Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Birthday Ice Cream

On Naomi's birthday, we celebrated with just our 5 family. 
(We will have further celebration this week with Andrew's family.)

We gave Naomi her own ice cream cone. She was equally delighted and confused by it.

Laughing at her sisters...

... but not laughing with her sisters. It was one of those nights where all 3 girls melted down. Glad we get the chance to celebrate more this week.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Hospital Visit

Last Thursday was Naomi's birthday. Part of our celebration was going down to the hospital where we first met her and where she spent the first 4 weeks of her life. We went to thank the nurses who cared for her and to show off how big she had gotten.

After our visit in the NICU, I found myself wanting to linger in the lobbies where pregnant women were waiting to see the doctor.  I found myself imagining Naomi's mother who was there one year ago giving birth. I found myself with tears in my eyes (and would have bawled if Malia and Davey weren't with us).

As we left the hospital, I also found myself full of joy. This little girl is a part of our family. And those days were she was so tiny and frail feel so far away.

Adoption is complex and beautiful. It is hard and rewarding. Most days I do not think of Naomi as being adopted. She feels so much a part of our family that I can forget that I did not give birth to her. But there are days when I am confronted with the truth of her adoption. I find myself worried about how she will process it as she gets older... I think of that woman who was her first mother...

We recently watched a documentary called Somewhere Between. It follows four young women who were adopted as babies from China. I highly recommend it. It was fascinating to watch these strong young ladies deal with their adoptions. It offered a great mix of reality and hope, what I think adoptive parents need.

I don't have all of the answers and don't know what is to come. But one thing is for sure; as we celebrated Naomi's birthday and reflected on meeting her, we again felt humbled and honored that God chose Andrew and I to be Naomi's parents.

Our first day meeting her...
.. and outside that same room a day shy of a year later. (It was either going to be Naomi with a water bottle in the picture or Naomi screaming in the picture because I took the water bottle away. I chose Naomi with the water bottle!)

But here she was later that day without a water bottle blocking her face!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Naomi's 1!

I really am having a hard time believing that our baby girl is 1 today.  We celebrate Naomi's life and this milestone with grateful hearts., overwhelmed by God's goodness.

Here is the lowdown about Naomi these days...

:: She loves being flipped on the bed.

:: You can usually get her to belly laugh when playing peek-a-boo, and she still loves being scared.

:: She is a very proficient army crawler and is starting to pull herself up on furniture.

:: She has great expressions - we get stopped all of the time in public by people commenting on her either beaming at them or because she has a super serious, contemplative expression.

:: She adores dogs and cows and, well, basically anything that is furry.

:: She is crazy in the pool.  She loves to splash and tries to climb out of her float.

:: She is currently getting one tooth on the bottom (she has two there already) and two teeth on top (not her front teeth like you would expect but two off to the side).

:: She loves Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? especially when her daddy reads it.

:: She is completely unreliable and would dive head first off of couches, beds, etc. if we let her (we don't let her).

:: She does not look like she was born at 4 lbs, 4 ounces (I think maybe her cheeks weigh that much now).

:: We call her Nomi (long "o") much more than we call her Naomi.

:: She has been screaming a lot lately (teeth) and sometimes I think she only has one volume (loud).

:: The hair is gaining momentum and she has curls along the sides.

Happy Birthday Naomi. We love you so much!

Last night at the County Fair.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Dress Like A Cow - 2013 Version

 Last Friday was one of my favorite days of the year - Dress Like A Cow day at Chick-fil-A.

 Our herd.

 Davey and Malia enjoying ice cream.

And Naomi got her first taste of ice cream (the third child gets sweets just 2 weeks shy of her first b-day!)  The first picture captures her initial expression... I think she was a bit confused by it!  But then she went back for more and more and more.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Davey and Pops in the pool

Both Malia and Davey are so much more comfortable in the water this summer than last. I am so grateful because it makes the pool so much less stressful for me. Davey decided a couple of weeks ago that she liked jumping into the pool. Here are some pictures of Pops catching her in Steamboat.

Also, I snagged this picture from Kendal. On the way home from a park in Steamboat, we saw a bear. A real bear. Just walking through the neighborhood. I have never seen a bear in the wild.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Steamboat Misc.

Here are some more random pictures from Steamboat. 

 Davey snacking on popcorn at the rodeo with her superstar shades on.

 Andrew and Naomi.

 Davey with a cheek full of tomatoes (she ate about 30 that afternoon), waiting to cross the creek.

 Naomi enjoying the creek.

 Malia is in the pink with her Emmie in turquoise.  I do not have many pictures of Malia from the week which is partly because she preferred to be spending time with her grandparents, aunts, uncles or cousins (not me)!

Des and Tess were quite a pair. With 6 cousins under age 6, there are lots of fun pairings when we are all together.  

Saturday, July 13, 2013

The Rodeo

This was our second trip to the 4th of July Rodeo in Steamboat.  

 Roping a calf.

 Bronco busting.

 During a break in the action, we took the kids down to see the calves who were hanging out nearby. (This may have been Naomi's favorite part of the evening.)

 The four oldest cousins were brave (thanks to the bribe of Pop Tarts afterwards) and joined the sheep chase. Malia and Davey in the middle of that picture - Malia in pink boots and Davey trailing behind in her red skirt.

 Afterwards we stayed to watch fireworks. 

 This captures some of the feelings towards fireworks.  Malia was a little unsure and Davey a little tired.  Cute moment: when Andrew told the kids that they could cover their ears so the fireworks wouldn't be so loud, Davey covered her eyes.

Friday, July 12, 2013

4th of July Parade

On the morning of the 4th, we headed downtown Steamboat for the parade.

 Our 5 family (as Davey and Malia affectionately call it)

Emmie and Pops with the grands.

A man riding a horned cow, a pony pulling a cart and a camel... its just like a parade at Disney World!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Family Hike

One morning in Steamboat all 14 of us set off for a hike. Hiking with kids is definitely a challenge and sometimes in the middle of it, as kids are whining and tired of walking, I wonder why we do it. But I know it is good to push them (and ourselves) and to explore nature. This hike ended at a stream which was a nice payoff.

 Crossing the stream to explore.

 I stayed with Naomi on dry land and tried to keep her from getting bit by mosquitos. 

 On the way back, Davey really wanted me to hold her and so I strapped her onto my back in our carrier.  She actually felt less heavy than carrying Naomi!

 In a beautiful field of wildflowers.

And since I had Davey, Pops carried Naomi the whole way out. 
She was happy despite her very serious look.

Monday, July 08, 2013

Self feeding fun

We just got back from another trip. We spent the 4th up in Steamboat Springs with Andrew's family.  Lots of pictures to sort through but since I am knee deep in unpacking, I am just going to share a picture of Naomi from before we left. She has been increasing interested in feeding herself which is both fun and very messy. Thankfully it is summer and so I can let her just be in her diaper during these messy meals.

Thursday, July 04, 2013

Ohio - MIsc

Just a few more pictures from Ohio. 

 Naomi getting a ride from Mimi in a laundry basket.

 Malia and Davey taking swings at the piƱata at my cousins wedding shower.

Amazing cupcakes that we ate.