Hi everyone!! So sorry for the lack of updates--but it is amazing how much time is used up taking care of six kids and a dog--it really has put a cramp in my computer time!
Well-after a very exhausted start--we began our journey as a family of 8 quite smoothly! It took about 5-6 days for us to start sleeping normally- and after that Sam has been sleeping from about 7:30 till about 7 AM. He also naps for about two hours every day- so he has done so well in that department. He goes to bed with a bottle--and after rocking him for a few minutes, he goes in his crib and is out!
We had a very busy first week back--since summer had started, swim team practice, ballet rehearsals and recitals, 3 t-ball games, and cheer camp-----phew--what a way to break into the new family! We all survived--and now are just in swim season-and Sam has LOVED the pool-splashing happily in the baby pool- and enjoying all the kids around him.
He also went to a T-ball game, and sat through a three hour ballet recital without a peep! I totally seem like a braggy kind of mom--but seriously--this baby is a total dream! He goes with the flow- and is happy to adjust to new circumstances without any fuss. He is always smiling, and rarely cries. We are all totally smitten.
Sam has also formed a very deep attachment to Darrin and I. He lovingly wraps his little arms around our necks, and will reach for us if anyone else is holding him. His smile is so bright when we walk into his room in the morning- it could bring tear to your eye!!
He also is a busy little bee. He loves to explore the house-and has been exhibiting more typical toddler behavior--like splashing in the dog bowls, or unraveling the toilet paper, or pulling a lamp off the table (!) --you know--the usual! This is the kind of stuff that makes moms a little nuts--but truly-- it makes me so happy to see him being mischievous!! He was soooo terribly calm at first--content to sit for long periods of time. I am sure beacuse he did not have the proper nutrition or muscle tone. He has now gained close to 4 lbs in the 3 1/2 weeks that we have had him--and has so much more energy! His cheeks even jiggle when he crawls really fast!! hee hee!
Our MAJOR accomplishment is that he is eating solid food!!! We started with the baby food--and then he was quickly up to 2 containers a sitting--yet when I tried someting solid--he gagged. Then--while at Uncle Jeff's 40th B-day party--he just decided that he had had enough!! He grabbed a chip from me and shoved it in his mouth--chomped on it, and reached for more! He hasn't stopped since! He loves cheerios, cheese, bits of fruit, soup, and all of those Gerber toddler snacks. We are still giving formula, and stage 3 baby food to ensure that he gets the proper nutrition--but he is headed in the right direction!
We had a pediatrician appt. last week--and our Dr. thought that he looked wonderful! He had great reactions--eyes/ears/heart looked good--we are waiting on bloodwork--but hopefully no surprises there. We are headed to Philly on Monday to meet with a hospital that has a pediatric burn unit--so I am anxious to see what the Docs there say about his foot. Not exactly looking forward to it--I guess I like being in lala land--and pretending that he won't have to endure anymore pain in his little life. We are also going 2 other Docs to make sure we get all the opinions that we can!! Say a prayer that all goes well!
Lastly--- the other kids reaction to Samuel! All of them love him--and for everyone but one--they have not missed a beat! Our dear little Hope had a rough week and a half. She wasn't mean to Sam--but exhibited alot of the behaviors that she did when she was first adopted. She has sensory issues--so they flared up big time! She gets really hyper and spins her wheels- and has a really hard time setttling down when at her worst. She acted like this for awhile. Then--I think it sorta clicked that yes, we are home--we haven't abandoned her--she is still very loved--and she has a baby brother that she can "mother". So the past few days have been so nice--she has taken an active interest in everything Sam does--she always asks to help (feed,change.play) with him. Thank God--because I was a little worried that we had rocked her world a little too much!
Sam does have a favorite in the house, however. It is small and furry and "crawls" just like him. It happens to go by the name of Snickers (our dog--if you hadn't guessed!!) Sam is in LOVE with the dog. He laughs outloud at her all day--and will crawl after her head butting her--it is hysterical. He also pulls her ears and tail--and thankfully Snickers has the patience of a saint--but we are trying to teach him "nice" hands!! Snickers is not so certain about Sam--but is enjoying him more now that he eats and leaves her snacks on the floor!! :-)
So we end our two weeks home on a high note. Beautiful kids, summer weather, lots of noise and laughter throughout the house--good friends and family, and a true angel on earth that we have been so blessed to be able to call our son---our beautiful Samuel.
Thank you for continuing to follow our story. If anyone reading is interested in learning more about special needs adoptions, and/or toddler adoptions--please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I am going to be updating my favorites with some additional links to children that are waiting for their forever families.
Love to all--hope your start to summer is wonderful!!! XOXOXOOX