Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Officially official!!

Yesterday was our finalization....about darn time :)  Everyrthing went perfectly... the judge was kind, our family was there with us, and our sweet girl smiled sheepishly as we all made a big fuss over her :)  Just like with Max, the flood of emotions caught me a bit by surprise, but how can you not be teary eyed in a moment like that?!  

We talked to Ellie a lot about what we were heading to the courthouse for but you know, things like adoption law get a bit lost on three year olds :). All she cared to know was that Stephen and I were "going bye-bye too" and off we went!  

Max behaved like his usual studly self and gave the judge a weird look when he asked if he was excited about his "new sister."  I could just hear his thoughts "new?  She's been around quite a while buddy!"  

So happy to have this last formal step done!  This little lady has long since been "ours" but it's nice to hear it declared "official"!!'

Thursday, June 26, 2014

One year ago....

So, turns out when you get out of the habit of blogging...... well, you can easily REALLY get out of the habit of blogging :)

Yesterday was Ellie's first forever family day!!  This past year has been full of very challenging times but has been worth every tear and moment of frustration.

Ellie is FULL of joy and such an incredible little girl.  We are so unbelievably blessed to get to call her ours!  I journal to each of the kids as a way of sharing my joys and concerns with things we encounter together.  I pray someday when they are older they will see them as a gift and a fun way to walk back through some memories.  I reread what I wrote to Ellie on June 25th of last year and remember the emotion of that day so clearly.  Though I can only imagine the hurt and confusion that she must have been experiencing, it was INSANELY difficult to be the sole source of her pain.  She found comfort in Stephen (which was a very special time for them) but couldn't even bare to have me make eye  with her.  I wrote to her "Take all the time you need baby girl, but trust me, one day our bond is going to be incredible!!" Boy, I had no idea!!  this little lady blows every dream of being a mommy of a girl out of the water!  She loves this flawed momma of hers something fierce!! 

We had to head to St. Louis for some dr's appointments so we decided to use the trip to celebrate our girl and do all the things she loves most.... eat, play outside and swim! 

Ellie we love you more than you'll ever know.  We are so blessed to be your family!!!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Already time for preschool?!?!

Oh these kids!!!  They grow up entirely too fast!  Since Ellie's three now, she's technically old enough for preschool next year.  We're not sure what we're going to do just yet, but we did want to have her assessed so we can learn what services she made need and qualify for. We are incredibly proud of our girl and man did she charm those teachers last night :)  Unfortunately Ellie had little exposure to some of the basic skills that most toddler in the US have mastered by her age so we're a little behind the curve, but she's working hard and we plan on giving her every resource we can.  Here's our sweet girl after her assessment....if they gave points for like-ability she'd be off the charts!!!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

The perfect girl's day!

This past weekend, Ellie, my mom and I headed to St. Louis for Disney Live!  It was awesome!!  Ellie was so excited to see Princess Sophia (she was ADORABLE in her princess dress) and had a blast!  The lights and music and dancing kept her attention the whole time (and the huge snow cone didn't hurt either!!).  She kept shouting "Mommy, look!"

It was such a special time for my mom and I.  We've talked for years about getting to have "girl dates" with my little girl and now here we are!!! 

 Lunch before the show....such a goof ball!

Who needs a tiara when you've got a Sophia baseball hat!

It was such a great day, and we made a ton of awesome memories!!!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Our girl is 3!!!

What an emotional weekend!  We had an amazing time celebrating Ellie's big day...but I found myself so many times just staring at her thinking "oh my word she's here...she's really here."  I remember celebrating her second birthday last year and longing to have her here and now she is and its more incredible that I ever could have imagined!  And then I get even more emotional when I think about her Thai momma and wonder if she's thinking of her today as well.  Does she know the blessing she is to us?  Does she know how smart and funny she is?  My constant prayer is that somehow she has God's overwhelming peace about her choice for life for our precious girl. 

Ok, now for the not so heavy, and much more!!!

Friday night we had a small family party...Minnie Mouse themed of course!

Practicing her "I'm three!!"

I think she LOVED the cake :)

Such a silly girl!

 Love these two!

Birthday morning!!  Starting it off with a healthy breakfast of donuts :)

My and my pretty girl heading to church

Time for presents!

Modeling her new slippers

Ellie has been OBSESSED with Max's laptop for the past she got her own "dap dop" as she calls it :)

One of Max's gifts!

Max's other gift!

Lets eat cake!!!

E's cake made by us (Max made a "minnie mouse", Stephen made a hair bow and I made a flower).  Professionals we are not :)

Well, it might not have been pretty, but she sure seemed to love it!!

Oh, what a weekend!  I LOVE these special days when we can stop and remind ourselves again just how blessed we are by these amazing little people in our lives!!  Happy birthday Ellie girl!!

Friday, January 10, 2014

Christmas recap

Christmas was a BLAST!  We had such a great time spending the week in North Carolina with Stephen's folks!!  We celebrated our family Christmas the Saturday before we left, couple that with actual Christmas day and then opening gifts with my parents after we were home and the kids ended up with 3 days full of presents! 

"Christmas Eve" night at our house!

The kids open "Christmas Eve pajama's" each year.  They are so stinkin' cute!

Christmas morning traditions....cinnamon rolls, hot chocolate and reading the incredible story of Christ's birth before we get to the presents.

Our cuties before Candlelight service at church!

Testing out one of their Christmas gifts, dual screen portable DVD player with headphones!

Christmas morning!

 Ellie's favorite gift!

Max loving his newest DS game

 Fun Grandpa and Grandma traditions!  Ellie got to plant her very own "Christmas tree" in their yard just like Max!  Max's has grown a TON since we planted it two years ago.

 And of course the tradition of marking the beam.  Max has grown about two and a half inches since last Thanksgiving!  And see Ellie's little mark way down on the right beam?!  Can't even think about how tall the two of them will be next year!

Now we're home and Christmas decorations are put away :(  But it was such an amazing holiday season having BOTH our kiddos home!  Ellie's still a bit unaware of the whole meaning of Christmas, though she did get good at singing "Happy Birthday Jesus", so next year will kinda be like a first again as we get to really share with her why we celebrate!!