Tuesday, July 19, 2011

And They Lived Happily Ever After....

This will be my last blog post on Starfish and Stones since readership has dropped now that we are home. Wouldn't it be nice if life were a fairy tale and everything could be an easy happily ever after. We are still in the middle of transition stuff here. Isaiah seems to be doing better this week but I am sure we will have plenty more ups and downs this next six months to a year. Levi and Jacob continue to do well despite Jacob acting like a normal active four year old boy who loves to harass his siblings. Susu is her typical self on most days. My four children are a real blessing but some days parenting four children is just plain old hard work. No surprise really for anyone who has parented a few kids. Even on the hard days, I know this is the path we are meant to be on and that God is with us in this journey.

If you are a grandparent, you will still get email updates and pictures. I think most people who are reading this blog have my email so if you would like to get update emails on the boys, just send me an email.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Jacob Saves a Life

Our house has been overrun with these medium size brown beetles the last couple of weeks. They are a little bit bigger than fireflies and we get rid of about 10 or more a day. Jacob has no problem picking up any bug with his bare hands and so his job is to get the beetles and throw them in the potty. Tonight Susu was yelling about two beetles in her room so I sent our little beetle exterminator in to get them. He very proudly rushed in to save his big sister from the yucky beetles. Susu then came in and said, "Thank you for saving my life from the beetles Jian Wei!" and she gave him a big hug and kiss. Jian Wei takes his job of saving lives very seriously and is not afraid to battle the horrible brown beetles.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Levi's Top Five and Prayer Request

Tonight Levi and I were having a pretty long conversation about things when he lived in China and things here in America. I have learned quite a lot of Mandarin in the last month and Levi has learned a lot of English. It is so cool for us to be able to have a real conversation already! Anyway, the part I wanted to share was Levi told me some of the things he likes best in America. He listed playgrounds, our house, the beach, the food, and the music at church. I had to share with our pastor and his wife that the music at church made Levi's top five favorite things in America because I knew they would love to hear that.

On another topic, I would like to request prayer for Isaiah. The last couple weeks he has been having some issues. I thought it was just transition issues getting used to two new brothers but I have been surprised at the level of things we are dealing with that don't necessarily seem related. They certainly could be but I also realized that we stopped giving him his fish oil capsules for about eight weeks. Prior to traveling to China, we gave him the fish oil daily for the symptoms of ADHD that he used to have, especially before the gluten free diet. I won't go into specifics on Isaiah's latest issues for privacy sake but the gist of it is that his impulse control has completely gone out the window and we haven't had issues like this since before the gluten free diet was implemented. He has been back on daily fish oil for three days and it will be interesting to see if that helps in another week or so. I certainly hope so! I was really expecting Susu to be the one to have some big transition issues along with Jacob and Levi but I was not expecting Isaiah to be the one struggling. Please pray that we would have wisdom on the best ways to help Isaiah deal with what ever the problem is. I had initially tried giving him a lot more positive one on one attention and outings out alone with Aaron or I but that has done nothing to improve the situation so now we have implemented some big consequences for misbehavior. Parenting certainly can be challenging and sometimes it is just impossible to predict how a child is going to react to things or what the real cause of an issue is.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Cousins and Stickers

Jacob has this habit of putting stickers on his own forehead and on the foreheads of anyone else who will let him. It cracks us up. Here is his latest victim, my nephew who is obviously wondering why his new cousin just stuck a sticker on his head.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Levi's Photographic Perspective

Levi's Early Happy Birthday

Today was Levi's family birthday party and it was definitely a success. Grandma, Grandpa, aunts, uncles, and cousins all showed up to celebrate Levi. Levi was so excited to be having his own party and he even woke up early this morning all ready to begin his day. He was especially thrilled to get the camera he had asked for and he spent the rest of his party taking hundreds of pictures. I will do a separate post with pictures of the party from Levi's perspective. Here are some pictures that Aaron and I took.

This birthday would have been a sad milestone if Levi was still living in China. When a child turns 14 years old in China, they are no longer eligible to be adopted by anyone. I can not imagine my son never having a family to call his own. A few years from now he would have very likely been sent out to make his own way in China with practically no education and limited mobility in a country where nothing is handicap accessible. I don't want to think about what would have happened to my sweet son. This is truly a birthday to celebrate since Levi now has a bright future ahead of him. I wish more people would consider adopting some of these older children in China who are available for adoption, especially those with physical special needs like Levi.