Adoption Interview

Adoption Bloggers Interview Project 2012

Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy New Year!

Well, the Christmas season has come and gone and a wonderful time was had by all. We feel so blessed to have experienced our first Christmas as parents. Hannah had a great time socializing and even got into unwrapping her own gifts! She just couldn't resist all that shiny, crinkly paper! I spent a good amount of time making sure it didn't end up in her mouth! Besides surviving the holidays in one piece I have many new Hannah updates to share. My little girl has really been growing up and the past few weeks she has really matured. Even her personality is maturing. She expresses many more emotions now than she did a month ago. It's amazing how much she has changed and how fast she's done it!

First off, Hannah has now mastered sitting on her own. I still place pillows around her if I'm going to be further than an arm's reach from her to cushion her if she falls, but she pretty much can sit for as long as she wants. She actually thinks it's pretty funny to let herself just fall back onto the pillows when she gets tired of sitting or when she's feeling feisty :)

With her new sitting skills a whole new world has opened up to Hannah and she's been having a blast playing with toys and reaching for things that she couldn't get to before. It's also made her easier to dress and her hair easier to brush and style. It's also allowed her to move up into the big tub and ditch her infant tub altogether which is good because the last time I tried to use the infant tub she kept sliding off the seat because her butt was too big to fit on the seat anymore! Now that she can sit in the big bathtub with more water she has really been enjoying splashing with her hands and kicking with her feet and generally getting as much water as possible out of the tub and onto the bathroom floor. She's also decided she thinks water pouring or dripping out of a cup is VERY funny and goes crazy every time I do it.

Her hair continues to grow and grow and she already needs another haircut to keep her bangs out of her eyes. The sides are so long that they are even getting in her eyes now too so I've started putting the sides in mini pig tails. Kyle's not real impressed by them because he thinks she looks silly with the pig tails on the side and the back left free, but hey, it works! I can't wait until her hair is long enough to put in a real pony tail or to braid. That will really be fun.

Now that Hannah can roll all over the place I had pretty much said goodbye to her play gym, but yesterday I found a way to bring it back from the dead. I hung the toys from the arches and then instead of laying her underneath them I sat her down in front of them and she had a blast batting at them and grabbing them while I played with her hair. Now if she'd just show some interest in crawling we could set up the tunnel portion of the play gym so that she could crawl through it. Unfortunately Hannah seems to have no intention of crawling any time soon. She'd much rather roll around to get where she wants than even attempt to get herself up onto her hands and knees. She does think it's pretty funny to watch me crawl around the floor trying to show her how to do it though!

Another big milestone Hannah hit the other day was her first taste of strained baby food. We started off with sweet potatoes and she really seems to like them. They were lots runnier than I thought they would be so that has made feeding them difficult since Hannah is used to much thicker food because I make her cereal about as thick as oatmeal. Along with eating new foods, Hannah has started to throw tantrums when it's time to eat her cereal and will grab for the spoon or the bowl and knock it out of your hands. I'm not happy about this new development and am doing my best to stop it in it's tracks. What worked for the other day was giving Hannah her own spoon to hold. She then paid attention to the spoon in her hand instead of trying to swipe mine. Maybe the same thing will happen with the spoon as it did with the sippy cup. Maybe she'll teach herself to feed herself. Speaking of the sippy cup, I think Hannah is addicted to water. She LOVES to drink it out of her cup and would much rather drink her water from her cup than eat her cereal at meal times.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Ho, Ho, Ho! Merry Christmas!

Hannah has survived a whirlwind of Christmas activity already and it's only Christmas Eve! Actually tomorrow will most likely be the tamest day of her holiday season! So far she's attended 7 Christmas gatherings already. Of course, she's loved every minute of every single one of them because she LOVES to socialize. I actually think she gets enjoyment out of entertaining guests and just generally being a socialite. As was the case when she was born, she has received many, many gifts which we appreciate greatly. We have so many generous friends and family members who are determined to spoil Hannah rotten!

Ok, time for all the new Hannah milestones and updates. Her cold that appeared last week continued to linger on through this week so Friday we took her in to see the doctor just in case since we knew it was either Friday or wait until Tuesday. Boy were we glad that we took her in because it ended up being more than just an ordinary cold. When the doctor listened to her lungs he said that they sounded different from each other, but that in infants it was often hard to tell if they are really different or not b/c of how wiggly babies are. Hannah was acting ok and not running a temperature, but he decided to send her for a chest x-ray just as a precaution since it was a holiday weekend and we would be out and about and it would be difficult to get treatment if she got worse later. Anyway, it turned out that from the chest x-ray that the doctor was able to diagnose Hannah with pneumonia. It was in the very early stages and only in her right lung. She was barely showing any symptoms at all and since we managed to catch it so early the doctor said it wasn't a big deal at all. He even cleared Hannah to go ahead and attend her 2 holiday gatherings the very next day as long as she didn't take a turn for the worse. It seems that once again Hannah dodged the bullet on what could have been an extremely serious illness since she is an infant all because of the quick thinking of her doctors. We are so fortunate to have some wonderful doctors involved in her care.

Hannah's newest trick is drinking from her sippy cup all by herself. She will still let me hold it for her occasionally to help her drink, but mostly she wants to do it herself and she is totally able to do it! Every now and then she doesn't get it tipped up quite far enough and she sucks in a bunch of air, but really she's pretty much mastered the skill. She absolutely LOVES to drink from the cup. The other day when she wasn't feeling well from her pneumonia and was refusing her bottle, we managed to get all of her formula down her using the sippy cup instead of the bottle. The doctor had stressed that it was important for her to stay hydrated and that she really should not be decreasing any of her fluid intake while sick. So, we were quite happy that she was so willing to drink from the cup because it made our life much easier.

Now that Hannah's hair is getting longer I can finally put it in pigtails and she looks absolutely adorable that way! It makes her look much older with them in. I took a picture of her sitting up by herself looking at a book with her pigtails in and she looked just like a toddler instead of a 5 1/2 month old! Speaking of looking older, when she was at the doctor they took her weight and she is now up to 18 lbs 2 oz. I don't remember the exact weight, but my mom told me recently that I was only l8 or 19 pounds at a year old! Hannah's 7 months ahead of what I was as a baby! Then again, she was double my weight when she was born since she was 8 lbs 14 oz and I was only 4 lbs 7 oz!

This Christmas season has been totally amazing. Hannah has brought more joy to our lives than we ever could have imagined. At church this morning the pastor spoke about how in our society today people are never satisfied with what they have and are always wanting more. In general I agree with him, except with one thing. I prayed and prayed to God to bless us with a child, and while I would be thrilled with another child somewhere down the road, having Hannah has completely fulfilled me. If we never have another child or if I never get another material thing my entire life I will be happy, I will be content, I will feel completely fulfilled and satisfied because the joy we have known these past 5 months is like no other I have ever experienced. It is the most precious Christmas gift (and birthday gift, anniversary gift, or Mother's Day gift) I have ever received and it continues on and on every single day when I look over the rails of the crib and see Hannah's face always bright eyed and shining smiling up at me with a smile of pure joy and love for only me. This gift keeps giving and giving. God has truly blessed us with the most wonderful daughter in the world.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Sippy Cups

Hannah continues to amaze me everyday. Recently I started giving her a sippy cup about a 1/4 filled with water to play with each time I feed her cereal. Before I give it to her I tell her this is her cup and I say, "Mommy can drink from Hannah's cup. Can Hannah drink from Hannah's cup?" and then I show her how to drink from the cup. Usually she just chews on the spout when I put it up to her mouth and then pulls the cup out of my hands and plays with it for awhile, but yesterday she watched me intently as I drank from the cup. Then, when I put it up to her mouth she latched on and started gulping down the water! It happened just like that! She had an eureka moment and now she's got it down pat. She thinks drinking the water is pretty cool although she can't manage to hold the cup herself yet and still drink the water, but I still think it's pretty cool that she learned how to drink from the cup so quickly.

Another update is that Hannah is down to only 4 bottles a day. She takes 4 7 ounce bottles and has now successfully moved to 4 hours in between each bottle. She has also been eating 2-3 tablespoons of cereal twice a day. So far she has tried rice, oatmeal, and rice with apples. I think she likes the rice with apples the best and I can't say that I blame her.

Hannah has also recently started developing a sense of humor. She will now laugh whenever we do something funny like make a funny face or talk in a weird voice. It's like she finally gets jokes now. It's awfully cute to see her laughing hysterically over mom saying silly things. It makes me laugh when she gets going and then that just makes her laugh even more.

This weekend starts Hannah's holiday engagements. She has 3 Christmas get togethers this weekend and 3 next weekend (one of which lasts all day!). I have a feeling she's going to be spoiled rotten by all the attention before it's all over.

Hannah got her first cold on Wednesday and it's still hanging on. She's really stuffy in her nose and her chest sounds all congested too. She's been pretty lethargic and fussy and of course she's very tired but refuses to sleep. On Wednesday she did take a 2 hour nap which has NEVER happened before. I kept going in and checking on her after a 1/2 hour b/c I was worried since it was so atypical for her.

Hannah also continues to resist going to bed at night and naps in general. She's been throwing huge fits every time we try to put her to bed. It's quite frustrating because we really don't know what to do about it. I have no idea why she's started this new habit of hers and I must say I don't like it. I miss the good old days where she put herself to sleep each night.

Yesterday the adoption agency called and asked us if it would be ok if they ran a story about Hannah's adoption in the Associated Press! I was thrilled of course and said yes. They said they would let us know when it was going to be published so that we could get a copy of it. I think it's pretty cool and can't wait to see what they write about Hannah. :)

Well, I think that's about all the Hannah updates for now. Hannah is still feeling really crummy and is not liking me being on the computer so I had better go and cuddle her some more.
PS. The pictures you see are Hannah's 4 month pictures. Now that she's 5 months old I've finally got around to scanning in and posting the 4 month pictures!

Monday, December 11, 2006

5 Months Old

Wow! Hannah is now five months old. Time really has gone by too quickly. It seems like just yesterday I was bottle feeding her using the boppy as a support and now she's sitting in a highchair eating oatmeal cereal! Hannah's developing at an astonishing rate lately. Her newest accomplishments are sitting up unassisted for short periods of time (2-5 minutes), standing by holding onto the coffee table, rolling all over the house to chase the cats, and babbling so loudly that it's impossible to hear anything other than her! She is continuing to have sleep issues which make things rough for Kyle and I as well as her, but we have reccently decided that we think it is related to teething. We still don't see any teeth, but the other day when she was crying inconsolably and chewing hard on Kyle's finger we gave her some teething tablets and she was immediately knocked out. The funny thing is that there is a warning on the box that says that the child may fall asleep quickly after their pain is removed and we thought, "Yeah, right!" but it's true. Those tablets have brought almost immediate paccification and sleep each time we have tried them reccently. We tried them about a month ago when we thought her teeth were bothering her, but they had no effect. It must not have been her teeth that time, because this time they really worked! Hannah has been having lots of fun rolling around the house and chasing the cats and keeping me hopping. Twice now she has bit Sadie's tail (our cat) and continues to light up every time she sees one of the cats. It's quite cute to see her arch her back to see them and then roll around trying to get at them as they walk by.
I've got several new videos for your viewing pleasure. Just click on the links and enjoy! This video is Hannah playing with her Papaw Like. one is of Hannah playing with Kyle's Uncle Jimmy. This one is of Hannah playing with her friend Evelyn. This last one is just of Hannah looking generally cute!

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Mini Van Mom

It took me so long to actually write and post my last post that I eventually just gave up and posted it without finishing it! So, this post will hopefully contain all the news that didn't make it into the last one! First off, after so much driving with the new car seat Kyle and I came to the conclusion that we needed more space for Hannah in our vehicle. Plus, the jeep was becoming less and less reliable. Well, to make a long story short, we went to check out a car sale and just look at what there was to see and ended up coming home with a minivan. Now let me just say that I HATE minivans. They are so ugly and I swore I would NEVER drive one, BUT they are so darn convenient! Everything about this van makes driving with Hannah so much simpler. We ended up getting a smoking deal on a '05 Town and Country with stow and go seating. That's my favorite part. I can now wrestle Hannah into her car seat in the warmth of the vehicle instead of freezing my but off with numb fingers that can't operate the latches. So, I'm officially a minivan mom. I can't say I'm proud of it, but I have at least made peace with the fact and come to accept it as just another stage in life.

Since we've been back from vacation Hannah has been having a really hard time with getting to sleep and staying there. She's been fighting going down for the night and then when we think she's down she has awakened every single night at least once before Kyle and I actually get to bed and the other night she woke up at 3:00am and wanted to eat! That hasn't happened since she was 3 weeks old! Hopefully this new problem won't last long and she'll be able to get back into her routine. I really miss being able to lay her down drowsy and have her put herself to sleep as we lock up the house for the night and get ready for bed ourselves.

Hannah has now firmly grasped the concept of eating cereal. I'm now making it as thick as oatmeal and she chows it right down. Tonight she was eating so well that we ended up fixing her an entire other bowl which she ate even more quickly than the first bowl. The second bowl was a variation on the first rice cereal as it had apples pureed in with it. She really liked that! It's a bit of a challenge getting all her bottles in as well as cereal throughout the day. I feel like all I'm doing all day is feeding her! It's almost worse than when she was a tiny infant!

Hannah's newest accomplishment is that she FINALLY mastered rolling from her belly to her back! :) Every time she does it now she smiles a huge smile and seems so proud of herself. Of course I'm really proud too! Tonight she was really funny because she was practicing her new trick by rolling back and forth between her tummy and her back over and over and over again. She must have done it 8 or 9 times in a row! It was really cute and that huge grin came with each successful try. I've got some video of it that I'll try to post at some time in the future. I've still got to get it uploaded to the computer and then to the internet and who knows when they will get done with all Hannah's feedings going on!

Hannah has been hanging out with her pal Evelyn a lot reccently and the two of them have finally noticed that each other exist. It's very cute to see them studying each other's face and reaching out to touch each other. Hannah's a bit of a bully though. She frequently swipes Evelyn's toys right out of her hands and then smacks her with them as she swings them around! Another discovery of Hannah's is the fact that we have dogs. She's starting to pay attention to them and actually petted Ella for the first time the other day. I use the term "pet" loosely as I'm sure Ella would describe what Hannah did as something other than petting since she yelped and ran away in response, but still it was a big first step for Hannah. Maybe she's not going to be just a cat person after all.