Archive for the ‘Adoption’ Category

On Little Brothers

Three of Ben’s friends who we hang out with are expecting little brothers (via the traditional way), so there has been a lot of talk about tummies and baby brothers.

This is how Ben is processing it.

Ben on pregnancy: “I have a big belly. I have a baby in my tummy like S’s mom. Mommy, where is your big belly? You have an elephant in your tummy.”

Ben on little brothers: “Mommy, where is my little brother? What’s he doing? Is he eating? Is he sleeping?”

I am pretty sure that he doesn’t grasp either concept, but it sure is cute to listen to him.

Sometimes we mention that one day he will have a little brother, too. It is insane to think that if timelines were similar to our last adoption, we would probably already have been matched with a baby or even have little brother home already. That is just CRAZY! There is no way any of us would be ready for that right now. I am so grateful that our first adoption went so fast, and I am grateful that this wait is sooooo much easier than last time. We’ve been in process for almost 14 months. These 14 months feel like a week did during the process for Ben.

If quoted timelines hold true (I know, what a joke), our baby has either already been born very recently, or will be born very soon. We are “expecting” a referral next June and currently the babies are about a year old at referral.

I have a whole other post planned about how I am already panicking about having two kids.


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Getting ready for Christmas

A few weeks into November, I got out the movie Elf. And it has been a lifesaver. Sure, Ben learned to start tickle fights, a snow ball fight without snowballs, says Francisco over and over, asks for syrup with his food, and has started to quote lines from the movie. But it has taught him to sing “Santa Claus is coming to town”, dance like Buddy in the mailroom, and it has acted as my babysitter. I also think that I can thank the movie for the fact that Ben LOVES Santa. He is obsessed with the man.

We’ve been able to do many Christmas activities this year and it is so fun that he sort of gets it this year.

So far we went to the local treelighting ceremony and singalong, watched Elf, looked at Santa at the mall, watched Elf, baked Christmas cookies that didn’t turn out, watched Elf, looked at Santa at the mall, made an advent wreath, watched Elf, had a little St. Nicholas themed gettogether with our friends, watched Elf, got boots filled by St. Nicholas, and sat with Santa at the mall.

We’re off to a great start!

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Catching up

I am so behing in blogging, it’s not even funny.

I’ve missed documenting so many of those little things that happen every day and I’ve forgotten most of them, but I need to record at least some of what’s been going on.

Ben is now talking in sentences that other people can understand (some of the time). For a while, one of his favorites was to say “me liking this” and “me no liking this”, but now he has graduated to saying ” I like this” and “I no like this”. Makes me a little sad. My baby is growing up.

Some of the funny things he’s said include:

“Mommy hair like Pappo”. We have a white cat. His name is Casper. Ben calls him Pappo. There you go.

“I hope nobody takes my food” upon getting up from the dinner table to run around the kitchen for a while

“Daddy old man” I love this one.

“Mommy lets me do this” (after being told by daddy that he is not allowed to do something)

“No touch, only look” (uh-huh)

“No,  I do it”

“Ben have it chocolate now”

“Mommy, time out” trying to send me to sit on the stairs instead of him.

And, the highlight of last weekend “I have it poopy” in the middle of mass.

He was always pretty good with the cats, but lately he has started chasing them around the house and yelling at them. Some days Casper can count his lucky stars that he is deaf.



He’s also developed a little ritual for when daddy leaves to go to work, which includes a hug, a kiss, and a handshake.

Ben loves to play tent in the bed, ride his tricylce (he still won’t peddle),


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For weeks Ben has been excited about Halloween. I don’t really think he knew what it was, but he kept on mentioning Halloween and that he would be a dragon “Me draaaagoooon”. I also don’t think he knew what a dragon was, but when I have him a choice of dressing up as a cow, a dragon, or a pirate, he chose a dragon. Of course he also had no clue what a pirate was, instead he thought I was talking about an airplane pilot.

We started the day off with a visit to our favorite children’s musician/band. The kid is OBSESSED. To his dismay, the drummer wasn’t there and he kept on asking and asking about him until he realized that he would have to make do with the guitar player/singer.

Then in the afternoon we went to a birthday party and rushed home just in time for our awesome neighborhood parade.

Ben and his neighborhood friends. The adoration is mutual. 

After the parade there were hot dogs to be eaten and Ben also enjoyed petting the live dogs that came out to the parade. And then it was time for trick or treating. We didn’t take him last year, so this year was the first time he went from door to door. We had been practicing saying “trick or treat” for weeks and he was really good about saying it. Ben didn’t really realize that he was getting candy, but he really enjoyed going house to house and getting something in his basket. He kept on saying “next house, next house”.

All in all Ben really enjoyed the day, and I am finally starting to like Halloween too. Oh, and my brilliant plan to only buy candy I don’t like kind of backfired. Now I am stuck with all of this Hershey’s chocolate I won’t eat.

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Christmas Cards – Done!

5×7 Folded Card
View the entire collection of cards.

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The holiday decorations are up at Macy’s, it’s snowing, and the Shutterfly holdiay card promotion is here.

When you have family overseas, it’s never too early to start getting prepared for Christmas. As a matter of fact, I am already running behind. In light of the insane shipping costs these days, I opt for compact and lightweight gifts, and as a mom who thinks that her kid is just the most adorable thing in the world, I think that everyone should have a gift with Ben’s picture on it. Or maybe just the grandparents… Shutterfly has tons of great gift ideas to choose from. I am also thinking of choosing something small to send to Ben’s foster family.

I send a couple of Shutterfly photo books to my parents each year, and last year they received a calendar that they loved.

Last year we also ordered our Christmas cards through Shutterfly and we got many compliments on them. My only problem is that they have so many to choose from (y’all know that I don’t like to make decisions). I think I have narrowed it down to just a few though (after spending hours looking at the designs and playing around with some pictures I may use). Have you noticed that some of their sample pictures include adoptive families? I simply love seeing families like ours on those cards.

My current favorite is this one:

I have a picture of my cutie pie that will match the color scheme perfectly. Oh what has become of me….

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A picture

If I were a parent by birth, I probably would have had about 250 pictures of my baby by the time he was a week old. As an adoptive parent, I counted myself lucky to have a handful of pictures of my son when he was approximately 4-5 months old. I never thought it would be possible for me to see what my son looked like soon after he was born, and then I lucked into a photo from when he was only weeks old.

This picture was in my inbox this morning and I have been staring at it on and off all day. It is unmistakable, this is my son. I feel lucky beyond words to have this photo. But I also felt something that I haven’t felt since Ben came home. When I was waiting for Ben to finally be ready for travel, I was aware that I was missing out on his life. Ever since he’s been home, I have been a little too busy to dwell on all the little moments I missed.

It only took one little picture to turn me into an emotional mess. All I can think of when I look at my sweet son is that I wish I had been able to be there and take care of him. He is so tiny and so innocent and by the time this picture was taken, he has probably already been through several caregivers. It simply breaks my heart.

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