Monday, March 24, 2008

Easter Fun

We had a great Easter yesterday. We went up to Wisconsin to visit Scott's sister and his neices. Noah seemed to have a lot of fun. We did learn, though, that no matter how tired Noah is, he won't sleep in the car. When he's extremely tired, he does this thing where he starts blinking constantly. He was already doing that at 11:30 AM yesterday. We thought for sure he would sleep during the drive to Wisconsin, but it never happened (both Jaden and Danielle fell asleep instead - and Danielle almost never sleeps in the car!).

Things have been going well around here. In general, Noah is a happy, fun little boy. I am definitely happy that Noah was able to come home to another three-year-old and a five-year-old. I've just loved watching the kids run around the house together - Noah fits right in!

On the other side of things, I do feel bad because I think that the words I say most to Noah are "pas touche" (don't touch). It's hard because there are so many things that Jaden and Danielle can do that Noah just can't. They play on the computer, but I generally have to keep Noah away from it because he just pounds on the keyboard and repeatedly clicks the mouse. The older kids can use the remote, but Noah tries to grab it at random times and ends up messing up the TV settings. He loves to play with the doors on the cabinet that holds DVD's - the doors are glass, though and I worry about him opening and closing it repeatedly - another "don't touch". The list goes on - poor kiddo. I really hate to make this our most popular phrase, but it seems necessary at this point. Hopefully that will change soon.

Another frustration is Noah's method of playing - it pretty much consists of dumping everything onto the floor (although, he was a bit better about it today - he played with dinosaurs with Jaden and Danielle and seemed to have fun actually playing - he then cradled his giant dinosaur and rocked it like a baby - so cute!). Whenever Noah is naughty, he gets this grin on his face and laughs - I think he got away with a lot at the orphanage by being cute, but it really just frustrates me when he knows he's disobeying and he's giggling about it. I have to remind myself that this is a learned behavior - the way he got what he wanted at the orphanage - and that it will eventually go away (I hope). Noah threw his first fit (which really just consisted of crying- no tantrum behavior) when we took away his Easter basket. Boy, does he love candy!! Not too bad, though - we went almost two weeks without a fit being thrown. I'd say that's fantastic! And Noah sleeps straight through the night, which is a big deal to me - I am not good on no sleep. I can't wait until Noah can talk a bit more so that communication is easier. But, otherwise things are good.

Anyway, it's impossible to describe everything that goes on around here - it's just way too complex. But, this post kind of gives you an idea of how this transitionary period is going. It's already starting to feel more and more "normal" - I'm sure we'll have more surprises along the way, though.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Monday, March 17, 2008

Home At Last

How do I even begin to describe life these past few days? I want to describe everything, but this blog would be about 40 pages long and I'd probably fall asleep here at the keyboard. So, I'll just try to hit the highlights.

Coming home was such an amazing experience for us. I was imagining that Noah would go back into his shell a bit once we were away from COTP, but apparently the days we spent there were well spent and he felt secure enough with us to be himself on the trip home. He LOVES airports, which was really fun. He spent most of the time pointing out the windows, yelling "avian!" (airplane) or "gade!" (look!). He never tired of looking at the airplanes or the little cars that carry baggage, etc. He was fascinated! Once we got to the US, it was even more fun because Noah was loving the escalators and moving walkways - every time we would get on or off of one, he would just laugh and laugh! I almost felt bad when we left the airport to come home - I just kept thinking how much he'd miss the airport. :-)

The transition home has been going amazingly smoothly so far. The three kids have been loving each other! It gets a bit wild around here at times - the older kids always tend to start bouncing off the walls at about 4:00 PM anyway. Now at 4:00, I would swear that we've added another three kids to the mix instead of just one! But, boy, they're having fun!

There have definitely been some adjustments for us all. It's interesting because even though Noah's three, he's like a much younger child in many ways. We've had to gate off the stairs again because he tends to head down at breakneck speed and he's really not good at navigating them. We've also had to make sure to keep the doors to the basement and the garage locked up. He's big enough to get into a lot and he really doesn't know yet what things are okay and what things can be dangerous (or what can be broken or turn into a big mess, etc), so we have to watch him very closely. So far, we haven't had any problems, but I'm kind of holding my breath, waiting for something to happen. And, of course, things like table manners, which we've gotten to the point of hardly worrying about with the older kids, are now works in progress (at the orphanage, Noah didn't really worry about making sure that food and drinks didn't end up on the floor). Meal times have gone pretty well, though. Noah seems to be used to eating anything that's put in front of him, but he's not used to picking up food with his hands and eating it. I have to take his sandwich or his hot dog apart so he'll eat it because he hasn't quite figured out how to take bites off of the food. But, he eats his fruits and vegetables - which is good since he hasn't had the best nutrition up to this point (they just don't have access to lots of fruits and vegetables in Haiti).

Noah is definitely scared of Sota, but he's starting to get used to him. They had dogs at the orphanage, but they're not really family pets. They're guard dogs and the kids mostly stay away from them - not because the dogs are mean - they actually put up with a lot - but I think the nannies are a bit afraid of them and that gets transferred to the kids.

Other than that, it's been smooth sailing. Noah's a good sleeper and he's been a happy little boy since he's been home! I'm sure there'll be lots more bumps along the way, but we can't ask for much more at this point. Here we are - a family of five!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Quick Update

I'm pretty tired, so I'm not going to write much tonight. But, I did want to give a quick update and let everybody know that we got to visit Ruthlande today. She seemed so big!! I honestly thought that she looked like she had doubled in size since she stayed with us. It's obvious that she's doing really well. Her mom says that she can scoot around now and that she talks a lot! We were really happy that she didn't cry when she saw us - she was definitely timid, but not upset. It was just so good to see her again and to see how well she's doing. Definitely an answer to prayer!

Other than that, we mostly just hung out with Noah today. He loves to play T-ball, so he and Daddy had lots of fun with that. We had an all-around fun day!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Dreams of Haiti Becoming a Reality

We're at COTP now. It's nice to see Noah back in his element. Obviously, the new environment in PaP made him a bit unsure of himself because he was SUPER quiet and almost bordering on lethargic - he really just wanted to sit in our laps the whole day. That was fine with us, of course, but he was just acting a bit odd. I saw him back in July and I had to tell Scott, "This is not what he's normally like." In fact, the first day that we met him, he did not make a sound - he was completely silent all day. When we got to Dr. B's (where we spent the night last night), Claudette said, "Did they tell you that he doesn't speak?" I had to laugh and say that I have heard him speak before! He did start talking on the car ride to the visa appointment.

When we got to COTP, it was a completely different story. Gone was the timid little boy who seemed unsteady on his feet. He was replaced by a rambunctious three-year-old who wanted to see what kind of mischief he could get away with! The kids were out on the back porch playing (what an amazing play area they have back there!) and Noah was having so much fun. And he was jabbering up a storm! I couldn't understand most of it, of course, but he was definitely no longer silent.

Our visa appointment went well this morning despite the fact that we were two hours late (apparently there was a mix-up and NLL thought we were supposed to go at 9:00, when in fact we were supposed to be there at 7:00). Luckily, they very graciously allowed us to do the appointment late. NLL went back in the afternoon to pick up the visa, but apparently the machine was broken today, so they will go back for it tomorrow. Luckily, we have plenty of leeway since we're not leaving until Saturday.

That's it for now. I'm feeling MUCH better after a good night's sleep last night and Scott and I are going to head to bed early tonight as well. We'll keep you updated!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Greetings from Haiti!

Well, we're here and our little boy is currently napping in Daddy's lap (actually, Daddy's taking a little nap himself). It's so surreal! The trip was hard - mostly because I have had the flu since Wednesday and I just can't shake it. I've had fevers off and on and I've now developed a really nasty cough that kept both Scott and I up all night. Literally, I didn't sleep at all last night. So that made for a rough day of travel today. Dr. B and Samuel from NLL picked us up at the airport and brought us back to the NLL office. We then waited here for about 2 and a half hours before Daryl brought Noah to us. I was feeling incredibly miserable and thought at a couple of points during the day that I might faint. So, I actually ended up laying my head down on a NLL desk and taking a nap! Luckily, Ibuprofin broke my fever and I felt human again by the time Daryl showed up with Noah. I was very thankful for that because I didn't want to be in a haze when I saw my boy again!

He's such a sweetie. He's been very content to sit on our laps and eat some snacks and play with his little toys. It was obvious that it was normally naptime for him - he was definitely acting sleepy! It's so amazing to know that he's coming home with us in a few days!!

Thursday, March 6, 2008

The Day is Here!!!!

We have a visa appointment!!! We will be flying to Haiti on MONDAY (leaving here on Sunday afternoon) and our visa appointment is scheduled for Tuesday morning! My mind is racing with everything that I need to accomplish before Sunday.

It's real - HE'S COMING HOME!!!

Sunday, March 2, 2008


Well, as often happens in life, God's timing is not my timing. And, like the Israelites, I've been grumbling. Just like them, I've found myself crying out, "God, you sent me on this journey, why did you have to make it so hard?!"

I honestly don't understand it and I might never understand it. That is something that I will just have to deal with. For now, I am trying very hard to be patient. To put an end to the grumbling and to trust that God didn't put me on this journey for no reason. There is an end in sight, even if only He sees it.

My sight is so very limited, after all.