That is all I have to say! I am so very ready for a nice break from school...
I just LOVE this time of year. The weather, the food, the beauty, the decorations... I love it all.
We are doing well! I know it has been forever since I have given a legitimate update, but we are doing great. Gracie continues to learn more and more English and she is now reading some, too. She understands pretty much everything and can speak enough to communicate with us. I so remember just 4 months ago when we questioned how she would ever be speaking with us. People just kept saying, "you will be surprised." And we are. She amazes me every day. Her birthday is on Thursday (Thanksgiving!) and she could not be more excited! It will be a little interesting considering Thanksgiving is that day, so I am guessing we will celebrate early. She is very excited that Grandma and Will are coming to celebrate with her :) and she seems to know exactly what a birthday is, as she asked for a Rip*stik! I just can't believe she's going to be ELEVEN! Her birthday also marks the 1 year anniversary of seeing her face for the first time, so there's a lot to celebrate that day! She blesses us every day, and although there are hard moments, she has been an incredible blessing.
And then there's Charlie. I don't even think he would understand if you spoke to him in his Chong*qing dialect. He is talking so much and understands everything. He is such a sweetie and has molded right into family life. He is really SUCH a sweet boy. He definitely has his moments, particularly some baby-like actions, but he has really amazed us. It feels like we've had him forever and he hasn't looked back since the day we met him... 5 months ago already! (CRAZY!) He is such a loving little guy, a sweet big and protective big brother to Kate, and a precious little brother, too. What a blessing our little man is in this house full of girls :)
It's hard for me to believe that it's already been 5 months since we've met these 2. It's really quite amazing, actually. They have molded in to our family so quickly and they don't miss a beat. I can't believe how smoothly adopting 2 at the same time, out of birth order has gone for us. All the glory to God for that. The only issues we've had are just small adjustment issues, but both Charlie and Gracie have done SO well. And I have to say that I am amazed by how AnnaClaire and Kate have adjusted to adding two siblings. 5 months really is not all that long of a time when you consider all of the changes we've been through, and they have handled it with such love. There is nothing like seeing the 4 of these together. Life is crazy, loud, and busy... but I wouldn't trade it for the world :)
They are loving school and learning a lot. Our ant farm just came and they enjoyed setting that up this morning and are loving watching the ants. (That's what the bottom 2 pictures are from.) AnnaClaire went to a birthday party last week, which was the highlight of the week for her. Today, she and Kate went to a princess party and just had a blast. They loved dressing up like "Annarella" and "Snow Kate." I must say that my two little girls make the most beautiful princesses!
So life is good. We are all looking forward to see Will on Tuesday, as it has been since the first of August since we've seen our brother! We are missing him! We can't wait for Grandma to come, too! Thanksgiving at our house is going to be especially fun this year, and we are going to have to figure something out to fit all TEN of us at our dining room table :)