Thursday, July 31, 2008
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
The heat is back. And the humidity. It's so humid this morning that the windows have condensation on them. Yuck! I know. It is July 30th. This is the worst part of summer though! In a weird way, I had a sign that the end of summer isn't too far off the other day. While driving back to Leesburg on the Toll Road, I saw some ragweed on the side. I said it was weird! And I didn't say I liked seeing it! My nose immediately started to burn. . .psychosematic, yes. The Queen Anne's Lace has been around for a while and is now in full profusion.
I was reading a blog yesterday that I follow, of a couple who adopted a little boy, also from Russia. They live somewhat in our area (must see about meeting them!), Quantico I think. She said something about keeping it real on the blog. She is absolutely right! I do tend to share all the good stuff and not much of the bad stuff that goes on around here. Okay, I did share the fever stuff, but I haven't really touched on the daily struggles that result in despair and triumph. So here goes:
Pretty much Aidan is a typical two year old little boy. He has a whole host of likes and dislikes. Two of his favorite things is to go bye-bye or to go outside. He says these to us constantly. Of course, Momma doesn't really like to go outside in this heat so I try to redirect him to going to play in the basement with his toys--trucks and cars, etc. (his inside obsession). However, this usually doesn't work right away. In fact, our little guy has got one heck of a temper! He will stomp his feet and scream and even throw himself on the floor crying, (real tears, too!) if he doesn't get his way. It's awful, to say the least. Most days, Aidan has at least one time out from the time I get him up at 6:40 until the time we leave the house at 7:15. It could be anything, really. He doesn't like the shoes momma put on him; he doesn't want to finish the cereal; he wants to feed the dogs his cereal and is mad because momma said no; he wants water and not milk; he wants milk and not water; he wanted a different sippy cup. . .you get my drift.
A friend of ours pointed out that he is actually showing signs of being spoiled. Not our Aidan!!! WE didn't do that. . .well, yes, we did. After thinking about it all, I realized that Pat and I have already made some pretty big mistakes in the raising of Aidan: we give in too easily and we gave him too much all at once early on. It was hard not to. We saw where he came from. We knew what his life would be if we didn't bring him here. And, he's so cute! The child is incredibly intelligent, too, which adds to our dilemma. How do we fix this? Well, we're trying anything that is suggested. We do the time outs, of course, and because he is so smart, I usually try and talk to him about what caused the time out when I bring him back out. So far I am sure my message sounds like this to him: Wa Wa Wa Wa Wa. . .love you, Aidan. (hug and dry the eyes) Afterward, you would never guess he had been crying or that he had had a time out! He doesn't immediately go back to being the whirling dervish, but he is back to testing the limits! Some days I sit in the rocker at bedtime with him and just relish the joy of having our son here with us. Then other days I am so exhausted from him I go to bed immediately and think to myself, "What have we gotten ourselves into???" I know this is not unusual, but it is intimidating and daunting, to say the least. We welcome suggestions on how to handle this as well as prayers that we can all survive until this phase passes!
Aidan is staying home with Daddy today. He has a doctor's appointment this morning to have the second in a series of three Hepatitis B shots. I feel sorry for Daddy. . .Aidan hates shots. . .I'm hoping they will weigh and measure him, too. I think he has grown again.
This weekend is the tax free weekend in Virginia. During that weekend, you made purchase shoes, clothing and school supplies tax free. I am taking Aidan and will stock up on winter clothes for him and possibly some shoes for Momma and Daddy, too. Should be fun!
Monday, July 28, 2008
Aidan has the second of three Hepatitis B booster shots on Wednesday. . .Poor Daddy has to take him to the pediatrician for that. But, we will make it all better that evening by taking him to the Loudoun County fair and having junk to eat for dinner!
Speaking of eating, our little Aidan is mostly a bottomless pit! He eats and then almost always says "More, please." The other day I gave him 5 miniature corn dogs for dinner along with some fruit. After cleaning his plate, he said, "More, please." So, I gave him 5 more miniature corn dogs. . ."More, please." After 15 of them, I told him no more. Tonight he had two bananas, a single serving container of Beefaroni, yogurt and two sippy cups of milk! And yet, he hasn't gained any weight! Perhaps I should measure him to see if he has grown more than the 1 1/2" that we already know he grew!!! I wonder how much he will eat when he is a teenager. . .I am beginning to have that prickle of fear in my stomach that we may not have enough to feed him every day!!! : )
And, now for the picture my sister Amy has been waiting for:
I fail to see what is so funny about that!
Saturday, July 26, 2008
Daddy is on the 3 to 11 shift right now. . .I heard him come in last night and, when he came up, go into Aidan's room. I smiled in my sleepiness. I know exactly what he was doing: staring in awe down at our little boy and thinking "Wow! I have a son!" It brings tears to my eyes and throat thinking about how selfishly long I made him wait for this time! But, we have Aidan now.
But, I want to tell you some funny and cute things about our little guy. Aidan has completely figured out his surroundings. We were driving home the other day and drove through town. We live just a couple of blocks from the downtown intersection of Leesburg and when we got there, Aidan said "Aya's Ows." I said, What, honey? And he said again, "Aya's Ows." He continued this and, in fact, he got more and more insistant about it and louder and louder. By the time we reached Ida Lee park, which is across from our house, he was super excited and I glanced back and saw him pointing. . .at our house! He was saying, Aidan's House! He knew we were getting close a two whole blocks away from our house! Wow! This is one smart little guy!
Last night, on the way to meeting Daddy for dinner, we stopped by a fabric store and bought a pattern for Aidan's Halloween costume--Mommy needs a couple of months to make something like this. He's going to be a Lion. We told him it is a BIG Kitty Cat and says GRRRRRRRRRRAAAAARRR!!! He is practicing. . .
Other words he is saying: outside, snack, cheese, snake, dog, shoes. Sometimes it takes us a while to figure out what he is saying because we are still learning Aidan-speak. But when we do figure it out, we are always amazed that he knows those words! He can only count to three, but we're working on it, especially when we go up and down the stairs. I think he understands the concept of five, though.
Check out the new skater cut!
A couple of things for you to contemplate:
What is the soul of a man? And, is your vocation also your avocation? More on those topics later. . .
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
At our pool, there is a funny large umbrella thing that has water cascading down that creates a wall of water. It's in the shallow kid section of the pool and Aidan took one look and went straight for it. So, Pat would go under and wait for him and Aidan would walk right through the wall of water to Pat! He didn't seem to care about the water slamming into his face and little body at all! Crazy!
Pat had to work on Sunday and when Aidan and I came home from church, Pat was in his work truck working on some trees that were in the VA Power right of way behind our neighbors house. I pointed and said, "Look, Aidan, there's Daddy." Aidan looked, but couldn't find Daddy. Daddy was up in the bucket of his truck so I said, "Up in the sky." Aidan finally saw him and from that point on, whenever Daddy is at work, Aidan points up and says, "Daddy sky!"
Aidan has figured out a lot of little ways to communicate with us. He calls anything that is mechanical and moves outside a BB. Daddy has a blue truck, that is also a BB; Mommy drives a red car (terms he also uses) that is also a BB, and so on. Last night he pointed to the sky and shouted "SKY BB!" He had seen an airplane and finally figured out how to tells us he saw it!
We have not discovered anything, yet, that Aidan will not at least try. He loves raisens, fruit, cereal, crackers, cookies, macaroni and cheese, and so on. This is his preferred method of eating watermelon:
It's messy, but he loves it!
Next time, pictures of my foot next to Aidan's. My sister Amy seems to think that will be funny.
Stacy, aka Crazy in Love with Aidan, Harrison
Saturday, July 19, 2008
Saturday, July 12, 2008
And, to top that off, how long do you think before Aidan is as big, or even bigger than Mommy? Hint: Mommy's hand is on the right. . . : )
Thursday, July 10, 2008
On Tuesday, Miles Harrison left his 21 month old little boy, Chase, in his SUV all day when he went to work and forgot to drop him off at daycare. The child did not survive. Miles Harrison collapsed when he learned about his sons death and was taken to the hospital. He has been charged with the manslaughter of Chase.
Chase was adopted from Russia in March, about the same time as we adopted Aidan. We first learned about Chase's existance upon our return when we took Aidan to the pediatrician. Apparantly, Chase was being seen by the same pediatrician as Aidan and they had remarked at the time how strange it was that there was another little boy from Russia with the last name of Harrison! I wish now we had pursued getting to know the other Harrison's as they live just in Purcellville, the town next to ours.
I can't even imagine what the Harrison's are experiencing at this time. My heart just breaks for them and for little Chase. Please keep them and the Russian adoption community/process in your prayers.
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
We have been noticing a lot of meltdown's by Aidan lately. They occur primarily at dinner time; when he doesn't get his way; when he's tired; when he is frustrated because he can't communicate what he wants; when Daddy isn't home; when we have to go to Day Care; when Mommy doesn't play longer; you get my drift! These are not fun. . .I have started tracking when they happen and what is going on so I can try and figure out how to stop them from happening, or at least know what has triggered it. I haven't been too alarmed until yesterday when I was told he had a complete meltdown at lunch time. . .this was followed by another one at dinner time. . .the What to Expect during the Toddler Years book has restaked it's claim on my nightstand and will now commence to be Mommy's bedtime reading for the duration. sigh. . .
Pat and I have already begun to think about our tithe for the church for next year. The annual stewardship campaign generally begins in the fall with the expectation that your pledge be in by Thanksgiving so the Vestry can prepare a budget for the following year before this year ends. However, this year our church is starting a Capital Campaign in order to do some renovations and to pay down some debt on buildings that have recently been purchased. Not exactly the best of timing with the way the economy is these days. Anyway, Pat and I had discussed it and had already decided to not increase our regular pledge citing child care expenses and increased gas expenses. We haven't totally decided what to do about the Capital Campaign yet. We're still thinking and praying on this one. Anyway, during the discussion, we had started talking about sending money, on a regular basis, to the orphanage that Aidan came from. We would like to do this because the need is great and it feels, to us, like a bit of a thanksgiving for the gift of our son. So, I contacted our agency about this and added that we would love to send a picture of Aidan for the orphanage--there is a wall with pictures of children adopted that is too cute! Well, we received a response that we would need to coordinate this with someone who is going to Russia and were given a contact in order to get this to them and we need to be sure to let the agency know so that they can let Dr. D know. In other words, it would be a one time thing. Not exactly what we had in mind! In addition, we were told that it would be good for us to have this contact in order to discuss our experiences. . .they are returning for a sibling to a prior adoption. . .I guess I didn't realize we needed additional people to discuss this with!
But, I gotta tell you, when my son looks at me, and there is that light in his eyes and the smile on his face, I just melt and know I would do anything for him. He is making me who I am today. Thanks be to God!
Sunday, July 6, 2008
Children gathered and waiting
in anticipation of the parade
about to start (notice how big my
two year old looks next to our seven year old neighbor!)
We had the usual signs of pride!
turn on the lights!
The rain held off until after the parade, at which time the sky opened up and poured on us all. But, the pork loin continued to smoke and we had excellent pulled pork sandwhiches later in the day. The firework display went on as usual, although the air was so heavy with moisture that the smoke did not dissipate as it should. But, the display was beautiful, none the less. Aidan, did pretty good. He didn't cry . . .but he really was happiest being held by Mommy and he plastered his cheek to hers and didn't move. He actually did best with the small fire works that people were doing on the ground. The larger ones in the air I think troubled him. We live close to the park and can hear them actually go up from our deck. So, it probably scared him some. But, now he has had a taste and I think in years to come he will really love this tradition of ours!
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
Prior to going to Russia on our second trip, I decided to take the Citizenship test. Pat and I are natural born Americans so we have never had to take something like that and Aidan, being our adopted son, became an American as soon as we landed on American soil, so he won't ever have to take a Citizenship test. But, because this was so close to our hearts and I believe in our country, I decided to take it.
I did pass. . .in fact I got a 100% on the 100 questions I answered. . .I do have a degree in history, so I would have questioned myself if I hadn't! But, from what I understand, most Americans don't even get 50%!! So, in honor of our day, challenge yourselves! You can get the test from the USCIS web site, or here is a link for a sample of twenty questions http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/25461301/. Let me know how you did!