Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Life with 2 girls....

I thought I'd post a little bit about what life has been with the girls here lately! As you know Hannah just celebrated her 3rd birthday. It is hard to believe that we have had Hannah in our home for 20 months now! I can't hardly remember when she wasn't here. She is such a sweet and beautiful child. She says the funniest things too. We have been told many times that she speaks at a 4 year old level. She not only knows alot of words but she knows how to put them in context. One day I asked her if she had done something she wasn't supposed to do and her reply was,"Yes I did. It was necessary." , she told Scott's parents that Makenna didn't "cooperate" with the doctors at Shriners! She had been doing so well with sleeping upstairs in her new room with Makenna but here lately she has decided that Makenna "bothers" her too much! For nap time, I allow her to sleep down in our room so they don't wake each other up.
We had been talking to Hannah about going to her big girl class at church since way before we left for China. She has been in the 1-2 year old class since we got her in June of 06! She was literally terrified if we tried to get her to go into the 2-3 year old class. She would shake and scream in fear so we left her in the little class with Makenna but told her when she turned 3 that she was legally too old to be in there and would have to go to her big girl class. Each week we did a count down, 3 more weeks, 2 more weeks, 1 more week... We had her birthday party on Saturday evening and she woke up Sunday morning declaring this was the day she went in her big girl class and off she went!! She colored pictures, sang song, played with Sammy the puppet that helps with story time, and had a great time! She has now gone 2 weeks in a row. In another huge event for her she has given up her pacifiers! We had also talked for the month before her birthday that on her birthday she had to get rid of her "plugs" because she would be too big for them. We gave her the choice of boxing them up and mailing them to China for the boys and girls that don't have plugs to have or give them to our friend Chrissy that is expecting baby Soapy (Sophia)in March. She chose to give them to Chrissy so the day after her birthday, we gathered them up and put them in a baggie. I asked her if she needed one last suck on them and she agreed. She took each one out and carefully put it in her mouth and sucked on it for 5 seconds or so then set it down until she had all of them out of the bag. She put them back in the baggie and cheered "bye bye pluggies" and that was it! She and daddy took them to Chrissy's house and handed them over. That night she was a little leary going to bed that evening and said that she couldn't sleep because she needed something in her mouth! I gave her a sippy cup of water and told her to take a couple of sips of water then lay there and rest. It worked and she slept all night! It does take her a little longer to fall asleep and she is not sure she wants to sleep upstairs now but all in all she is doing well. I told her Monday night that if she slept in her bed all night that she didn't have to take a nap on Tuesday and we would paint her toe nails and make a Kai Lan lantern. She was so excited and did great! So she now has purple toe nails and we have 3 Chinese lanterns hanging from our dining room table light!
I would have to say that the honeymoon is over between she and Makenna! She has gone from being very motherly to treating Makenna like a red headed step sister half the time! I think we are working through some jealousy issues so I am trying to spend more time with Hannah. Scott also takes Hannah with him if he goes anywhere in the evenings. This has helped some too. We have also been putting Makenna to bed and letting Hannah stay up for another hour and playing with her. All in all she is such a blessing. I love to watch her sleep and look at that beautiful little face and just wonder what she is dreaming about, what her dreams are, what she will be when she grows up. Daddy signed her up for preschool last week! I almost forgot to mention that! She will start next fall and she is very excited, not that she knows what she will be doing but she is excited about getting a book bag and going to school like Ryan!
On to Makenna Grace. Where do I start with this little spicey girl! She has had a flawless transition. I know that children do not just bond to their new parents but she honestly does not show one sign of not bonding to us. As long as she has her way she is a delightful child!! We have seen the spicey girl temper move up a notch or 10 in the last couple of weeks. She has gone from screaming if something is taken from her to throwing herself on the floor and literly screaming until she almost passes out! This usually happens when Hannah is taking something from her. She has never done it with Scott or I! IF she sees Hannah coming towards her and she knows that Hannah wants what she has (usually because she snatched it from her) she will begin screaming this high pitched alert the neighbors scream and flop on the floor. Being the great mother I am I usually just laugh at her because it is so funny. She will lay there until she is done then come to me for a hug.
Shriners asked us to break her of her bottle before surgery but that is not an easy task! She has refused to go without a bottle! The problem is that she has a hard time with most sippy cups. She just drools so much more with those than her bottle and it takes forever for her to drink from her cup. At night I have been trying to rock her to sleep because I think she will need to do that after surgery. SHe has acted like she enjoys it although sometimes she just wants to play with my face or hair instead of going to sleep! Her other little thing is pinching! The little snot will grab a hunk of skin, usually your cheek or even your hand and pinch the snot out of it. Hannah and I both have war wounds from her this week on our cheeks! I have been pinching her back but I don't know that it is sinking in that it is bad to do. She has been signing more and has also added a couple of words. She was signing baby to her book the other night and has started saying mum mum (num num what the girls call their blankies), hot, hi, mama, and what I think is Ryan. She was standing at the top of the steps this week yelling IIIIIIan, It did sound much like her other yelling but I have heard it a couple of times. She insists on feeding herself which is usually a huge mess but I guess she must learn. She wants to have her own fork but just holds it in her left hand hand and feeds herself with her right hand! Some how her hair is a showcase for what she had to eat!
Makenna gets upset when someone leaves the house. Since we returned from Shriners we have not taken her out of the house butjust a couple of times. She wants to leave so badly! She will get her coat and try to put it on. When we tell her no she will cry and go to the window in the dining room and watch them leave! It does break my heart but it is what is best for now. We have been lucky enough to escape all the flu and bugs out there. We have had some snotty noses but that is it.
Ryan has had a rough couple of months but seems to be doing much better. He started a new job yesterday and his dad is hoping he can get some free pizza from time to time! A couple of weeks ago, while we were in Chicago, Ryan's brakes went out on his car and he had an accident. He skidded across 4 lanes of traffic and finally came to a stop. We are so thankful that there were no semis coming. It could have been a much different situation. Because of him going through a fence and the damage that was done, his car was not worth fixing. We had just put 800 dollars into it in December so that is wasted as well! Oh the lessons of life!
TJ is doing well, although really sick right now. We appreciate prayers for him as he is batteling a nasty chest cold. He said he doesn't ever remember being this sick. TJ is set to graduate his school on March 21 and got his orders that he will report to Cherry Point NC afterward. We are happy that he will be much closer to home. He thinks that he will be deployed end of the year. He is hoping to make it home for Anna and Ryans' graduation this spring.
That is about all I have on the kids. I hope I didn't ramble too much, just knew it had been a while since I had posted much about daily life. I am sure there will be things I forgot but we'll save those for another day!!
God Bless!


Kathy said...

It's hard to believe that one day you were concerned over things like the size of a head! Oh, how I'm glad you didn't miss God in all of this! Life is certainly good.

Anonymous said...

Hi! I had to write when I saw your referral dates and travel dates. Ours were exactly the same! We traveled to bring home Katelin Grace and just couldn't believe some of the similarities.

God moved us to adopt at an age when most people would think we were absolutely nuts. But we couldn't be happier because we know we are doing what God called us to do. And we know that Katelin is the child that was intended for our care. She is a delight and we can't imagine life without her. She faces heart surgery soon and that will be a difficult time ... but without it she would not live.

So daily we surrender ourselves to the Lord for the strength to be her parents. And soon we will surrender her for surgery to prepare her for a full life.

So, God's blessing to you and your family. If you want to check out our website it is

We are Joan and Ken McKenzie and we live in the western suburbs of Chicago.