Monday, December 31, 2007

Last Post of 2007

Happy New Year's Eve! 11.5 months ago we posted our first blog about adoption. By March I was droning on and on about how long this is taking and my hopes and dreams for the future. By the beginning of May I was in dire straits, so anxious to hear who our new family member would be. Low and behold, May 18th we received our referral for an 11.5 month old baby girl, Terefech. We celebrated and you shared in our joy. Many of you contributed donations for the care center and helped us prepare by hosting and attending baby showers. We brought TN home on August 4th, overjoyed and overwhelmed. The months have passed so quickly we barely blink and TN has grown an inch or two and learned a bazillion new words. A few days ago, we celebrated our first Christmas as a family of 3, and tonight we celebrate and give thanks for a new year which includes our daughter, Terefech Nerys.

Happy New Year, Everyone!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007


It's only a few days until Christmas. Our first as a family of three, as parents. It's hard to know how to mark this special occassion... we wonder what traditions to start, which to keep from our family of origin, and how to make this season special from this point forward. Nevertheless, time will pass and we will determine the future in due course, over time. And, as the years pass, TN will likely tell us what she wants out of these special occassions.

Happy Holidays. I hope that all of you, who have supported and loved us through our amazing, wonder-filled and inspiring year find peace, love and joy in your annual celebrations.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Ah Wu Wu

What TN lacks in physical prowess, she makes up for in cognitive acumen. Our delightful 18 month old knows how to use her words. Surpassing her age expectations and showing a tremendous learning potential after being here a scant 4 months, having never heard English in her past, TN now speaks almost 60 words.

She tells us when she is hungry, speaks in multiple word sentences and likes to tell us stories... of course her stories are peppered with "words" we do not understand yet, but she likes to talk. A lot. She now points across the room and says, "dat ting?" or "that thing?" meaning, "What is that? What is the word?" She studies us with rapt attention, staring at our mouths, her lips and jaw practicing the subtle movements speech requires. She then attempts the word again and again, mostly until she is satisfied with her own pronunciation.

Her new favorite word is bubbles (which now sounds a lot like bub bo, emphasis heavy on the bo, where her voice raises in pitch as if to emphasis her finger pointing, rather than vice versa). She learned num-num this weekend, which she now uses every time she would like to eat. All liquid beverages are "pop!" which she says in a slightly squeally voice. Diaper (dii ter) means its time for a change, and she likes to tell us when she toots (tooo oot?!). So, I guess her basic needs are covered... she even likes to tell us when she is "home". :)

Each day TN brings a new word to our world, causing us to do much problem solving and hard listening... did you hear that? Did she just say...? The best one, however, is Ah-wu-wu... I love you.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Let It Snow!

Nerys briefly experienced snow over Thanksgiving, when we received a trace... enough to lightly salt the windshield of the car. She grabbed it and looked at me, seemingly perplexed by this white stuff that was cold and melted. Somehow in her 18 month old mind she'd determined this wasn't how things were supposed to be. Little did she know the things to come.

First, there is the pesky snowsuit, hat and mitten combination that never fails to turn a toddler into a colorful statue of sorts-- immobile, too hot, and cloistered. Also, you cannot easily remove yourself from this predicament.

Then, well, there is your inexperienced, first-time parents who do a more horrible thing to you. Beware: Scary first time parent mistakes illustrated below.

Of course, a couple of weeks later it happens that we get a BIG snow fall. That's right, our first real dumping of snow, enough to plentifully cover the hard ground and brown grass, enough to plow and cause misery on the roads. We excitedly proclaim this to be "Nerys's first snow!" and go about the normal child preparedness drill. First: warm under clothes. Second, does that snowsuit fit? It looks like it will fit. Well, we'll just try it on. Okay, well it's a bit (lot) tight, but it'll do for now so we can take pictures (pictures are VERY important). I vow to purchase a more adequate pair of toddler snowpants. Nevertheless, with beautiful TN properly stuffed into her snow suit, hatted, mittened, bundled to the core, we set out into the snow.

Terry finds our first sled we bought together a decade ago and properly affixes a rope. Being good parents, we place little TN in our ancient, blue plastic sled and set off... down the hill. All is well and fine, mommy is taking pictures, daddy is pulling the sled. Except then Terry decides that he is going to run down the hill. The sled hits a bump, TN bumps too, but lands rather sloppily in the sled, and promptly bounces right back out, face planting in the fresh new snow... all the way down to the leaves and grass below. Hmm... A cute scene turned horrible wrong, our poor TN is shocked. She is shocked and then she is mortified. She mortified and then sobbing while mommy digs the snow out of the hat flaps and wipes TN's face with mittens until she is nice and dry. And then, well, snow time is over and we have forever recorded that we totally ruined that which is... Nerys's first (really bad) snow.

At first, things went really well!

Being good parents, we do take a picture of the results of our faulty moments also (I'd dried her off already!).

TN and Dad do good sledding together!

Addis Ababa Time