Saturday, February 16, 2008

Happy 18 Month Birthday Lilybug!

Yesterday Lily turned 18 months old. I know I've said it a million times, but I can't believe how much she has grown in such a short time. She has been such a precious gift to our family. Here are a couple of "then" and "now" pictures.

Lily in July 2007 while we were still in China. She was swimming in this 12 month size dress.

Lily in February, 2008. She fills this dress out much better now! Her hair has gotten so long and look at all those teeth! I fall in love with that smile more and more every day, if that's even possible!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Is This Lily?

I recently joined a Yahoo group of families who have adopted or are adopting from the same orphanage where Lily lived for the first 11 months of her life. I found these pictures someone had posted. They where taken in June, month before we got her. When I opened this picture, it took my breath away. Could this be our baby Lily? I don't know if I am thinking it's her because I really want it to be her, or if it really is her. I'd love to know what you think.

Look at that sweet face and all that hair. If it isn't her, it sure looks a lot like her!

Here she is again on the left. My heart just breaks seeing these precious babies looking so lost. I wonder if the other ones have found their forever families. Seeing them all sitting in those walkers, it sure makes it clear why Lily just hated sitting in hers; it also explains why she couldn't even crawl when we got her and why she had had no muscle tone at all. I am so thankful to have this sweet little girl home!

There are also several pictures posted of her orphanage (Yujiang Social Welfare Institute). It is such a blessing to see where she lived since we were not able to see it while we were in China. While we were there I really didn't want to see it...partly because I was afraid of what I would see and partly because I didn't want to travel there with Lily and give her any inclination that she would be going back there. Seeing these pictures, it gives me comfort knowing it is not at all as bad as what I had pictured. There are play rooms with brightly colored foam floor pieces and the cribs are all full of soft looking bedding. We had seen pictures of just horrbile places with only wood inside of the cribs and no blankets. There was also an air conditioning unit pictured, which I know a lot of orphanages don't have. Even if that isn't her in those pictures, I am grateful to know she was taken care of as best as could be expected for the situation she was in.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Finally...More Lily Pictures!

Lily is growing up so fast already. She is getting so tall and is starting to outgrow several of the things she wore when we first brought her home. She is quite the little chatterbox now. She knows many words and when she doesn't know the word for what she wants, she just makes it up! She is starting to do a lot more pretending now...pretending to talk on the phone, pretending she is eating the picture of the banana in her Elmo book, making Elmo do "river dance", and feeding her baby. Have I mentioned how fabulous we think she is? Here are some of the words she uses the most:

First, her animal sounds:

The cow says-"oooo"
The horse says-"neigh neigh"
The dog says-"fffffff"
The cat says a high pitched "mmmmm"
The sheep says-"ah-ah-ah-ah-ah"
The chicken says-"gah-gah-gah-gah" really fast
She does a really great groan sound for the lion

Her words:

Mama and Dada
Nai Nai (Robert's mom)
Lao Lao (my mom)
Baba=grandpa-Robert and I have pictures of our dads up on the wall and have shown them to Lily. She calls them both Baba, which interestingly is the Chinese word for dad. She loves to point at the pictures, say "Baba!" and give them kisses...too sweet.
Baby-she just loves babies!
she calls her bib "b"
oval-she knows several shapes but that's the only one she can say so far
Elmo (she no longer says "Emma" which I thought was adorable!)
Key-ka=kitty cat
puh-puh=purple...funny she knows how to say mommy's favorite color
sheeyna=Shayna (our dog)
Uh-oh-sometimes she drops things on purpose just so she can say that
No-no-no!=no explanation necessary...that's a fun one!
She now calls Larry "Weebee". How cute is that!
My new favorite is what she says after we pray. We pray with her before every meal and right before we put her to bed for the night. Right after we say "Amen", Lily says "A-nah!"

Those are a few I can think of off the top of my head. I am constantly amazed even more by how much she understands. I'll ask her to do something I've never asked and she will go do it. She just loves music. She starts bobbing her head back and forth when we ask her if she wants music on, and when I sing to her, she does the sign for "more" when the song is over. She LOVES her books and brings them to us one by one to read to her...she could do this all day. She did her first somersault yesterday all by herself...I'm thinking gymnastic classes may be in order pretty soon! She is such a sweet little girl and I thank God every day for blessing us with this little miracle. It feels like she has been with us forever.

Lily and mommy on Lily's first carousel. She was apprehensive at first, but she must have liked it because she asked to go again with her daddy!

Lily got this baby for Christmas from her great aunt Valerie. Once we opened it, Lily grabbed the baby's bottle and immediately pretended to feed her baby without us even showing her how...she is a genious I tell you!

Lily showing my grandma her favorite book...Ten Little Ladybugs.

Lily's newest face...we call this one "kissy-lips".

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

We're Still Here!

I have to apologize for the lack of updates recently. Apparently someone has decided to send us a belated Christmas gift...a new computer virus! Our computer is a wreck. Robert has to rebuild the enitre thing which doesn't sound like fun to me. I am not a computer person, so I'm not really sure I know what that means, however I am extremely thankful that we (meaning Robert) were able to find and backup all of our pictures. It would have been very sad around here if we had lost those. It just amazes me that there are people out there with nothing better to do than to write viruses for people's computers. Anyway, now that the pictures are on CD's, I (meaning Robert) will upload them onto my laptop so I can post them to the blog.

In the meantime, since it's Super Tuesday (and if you didn't know that, I'd love to know what rock you've been hiding under so I can come visit you!), I do want to encourage you to vote today. I won't get on my soapbox and tell you how blessed we are to live in this country and what a privilage we have as Americans to be able to participate in this amazing democracy, but I will just gently urge you to go to your polling place today and cast your ballot. Have a blessed day and I'll have more Lily pictures soon, since that's why you are really here anyway.:o)