Sunday, August 29, 2010

A Gracie Update

Here's sweet Gracie in her glasses! (and notice all of her jewels! :) I bought the girls each a necklace at the store I work at, and the bracelets she made with a beading kit that a friend gave her!) Anyway, I am so glad that she can finally SEE! I'm sure it's making a huge difference for her, too, as she had horrible vision! She picked her glasses out and they look adorable on! We had hoped she could get tortoise frames, but they wouldn't stay on her nose. I do think she looks adorable in her glasses, and most importantly, she can see!

Gracie also had her dentist appointment last week and did very well. She only has 3 cavities, which was definitely exciting to hear, as according to her paperwork, she had many more. She needs to have two of them filled and the other is in a baby tooth, so they are going to pull the tooth, which by the way is her only remaining baby tooth! Other than that, her mouth looked great and she will just need braces!

And for those who are wondering, Gracie is doing great! Her English is coming slowly but surely. She works on Rosetta Stone English daily (while Dad does Mandarin!) and really enjoys it. She has a notebook which she has taken lots of notes in, and it's fun to see all of these English words that she is writing!!! She is using more and more, and although it's still not much, there have been improvements! 
She is a girl who is all about her daddy, that is for sure! It's really sweet. She also lights up whenever Drew is home and loves talking to him in Mandarin. We have learned some really interesting things about her and have really loved that she and Drew can communicate! She is so smart and we are pretty sure she spent a lot of time in China talking with her foster brothers and father, as she is an amazing communicator and knows a lot about things that most 10 year old girls would be clueless about!

She and AnnaClaire are going to start school tomorrow! Age wise, Gracie will be in 5th grade, but one of the perks of homeschooling is that she can take whatever pace she needs to get on track. Obviously she won't be doing most of the things that you learn in 5th grade, considering she doesn't have much of a grasp on English yet. Mom is going to start AC with Kindergarten! She is SO excited! Although she's not technically the age to start kindergarten, she is SO ready for it.

Grandma was in town last week and Gracie loved that! She was closest to her foster grandmother in China, so she immediately loved Grandma and followed her everywhere. It was really sweet. She just loves her "grand-a-mother!" I was gone most of the week on my retreat, so I was only able to get one picture of her with the kiddos (and the lollipops she brought for them!)

So there's a little update on Miss Gracie! She is amazing! So sweet, obedient, beautiful, and loving. It is SO hard to believe that she's only been in our family for just over 2 months. Crazy. It literally feels like she has been with us so much longer. We never in our wildest dreams imagined that the adjustment with TWO kids, one being TEN years old would go this well. God has truly answered all of those fearful prayers we had and has blessed us in amazing ways!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

A few pictures

 At OTB on Sunday! :)
 Charlie man was ALL smiles on Daddy's shoulders!
 And Drew gave one to Booie!
First day of school! 

I don't have time for a long update... but I did want to share a few more pictures before I go again in a few minutes. Enjoy :) And when I get back, I promise a picture of Gracie in her glasses. They FINALLY came in today!

Have a good few days!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

I'm back!

I've spent the last few days on a school retreat in the mountains.Our first 3 days of school every year are spent here and it is always so much fun. This year was definitely the best, maybe because we're seniors :) The picture is most everyone in my senior class during the class competitions (which we won!)

Anyway, that is why I've been a bit absent lately! School starts tomorrow, and then I'm going back on the same retreat with the middle schoolers (some of the seniors go back to serve the middle schoolers). I'll try to share some pictures and a little update on everyone before then!

Monday, August 16, 2010

A fun weekend!

We have had some VERY exciting news in our extended family :) which caused for a trip to Aunt Linda and Uncle Peter's house! Mom, Kate, and I left on Friday afternoon to drive up to Atlanta. We brought Kate to ease Dad's load, yet still be able to get things done... she is SO good and plays SO nicely and quietly!
This is how we spent about 14 hours on Saturday... doing paperwork... ADOPTION PAPERWORK! There's an amazing story behind this all, but I need to wait to share it :)
On Saturday night, Aunt Linda and Uncle Peter brought us to one of their favorite restaurants, where we enjoyed burgers and AMAZING strawberry shortcake!
Kate loved the dog, Sassy! And she loves her Uncle Peter, too! They became the best of friends in the short time we were gone!
It was so good to give Kate some special time to herself. She really needed this weekend and some special attention!
On Sunday, we went to Church! Miss Cakers had a blast at the nursery there!
And she loved meeting all of Aunt Linda's friends, who were so excited to meet one of the kiddos they have heard so much about :) It was also fun because we ran into the family of the amazing girl who I went to China with and roomed with last summer. Sadly, she doesn't live in the area anymore, and I didn't get to see her. We also saw the trip leader at lunch, which was fun to catch up with him again!!

After Church, we went to lunch at a Chinese place. Of course, we had to have Chinese food to celebrate the start of the adoption process :) Here are Kate and Uncle Peter playing!
We went back to their house and Kate ran around to get some energy out and played a little more while Mom and Aunt Linda went over some last things about the paperwork!
We had such a fun weekend with Aunt Linda and Uncle Peter!!!
And we did not want to say goodbye! As we pulled out of the driveway, Kate said, "I miss them already!"
We stopped at the Hanna store in Atlanta to use a coupon (and not have to pay for shipping!) and then Kate fell fast asleep until dinner...
We were passing by the exit of some friends, so we planned to meet at a little Mexican restaurant! Ashton and I have been friends for so long, yet never met in person. It was so good to finally talk FACE TO FACE!! Oh and in case you are wondering, she is even sweeter and more amazing in person than she is on her blog! :)

Anna Grace and Kate hit it off fast! They were PRECIOUS together. At one point, AG said, "Can we be best friends?" and Kate answered, "Yes!! But what's your name again?" We were all laughing so hard. They were just so sweet together and had the best time talking, playing, and running around! Oh and they are about the same size, which is amazing considering how TINY Kate is! Can't wait to get these girls (and the rest!) together again!
So yes, it was a very fun dinner! Our moms had such fun too! They became fast friends, too. Crazy how this miracle of adoption works and how quickly you can become friends with people you've never met... They can't wait to get all of the kids together! We live less than 2 hours from each other, so we'll have to do it more often!!
Kate, Andrew, and Anna Grace! Such cuties :) Can't wait to see all 6 of our siblings together!
The big sisters and the littlest sisters :)

Thursday, August 12, 2010

The Swimming Beach in {too many} pictures!

We have a really nice park about 30 minutes away that has a lake with a swimming beach. Mom has been a couple of times this summer, and the kiddos always have a blast. Once again, we had such a fun day today at the swimming beach with the girls' best friend, Mia and her mommy! We also loved celebrating with them, as Mia's family just received LOA for Mia's precious big sister, Emily!!!! Yipee! Anyway, we had a blast playing in the sand and water and everyone was very tired out (and tan!) by the time we left! We are definitely soaking up these last few days of summer and the swimming beach was the perfect way to spend today! A little sad that this is the closest thing to a beach trip this summer, but to be expected considering we spent close to a month in China!

Anyway, enjoy the pictures. Since I joined along this time, there are a bunch!