7.19.2014

Elisabeth is Eleven!


Ok, Elisabeth is actually 11 years and 1 month now…but in the four weeks since we got the call that a birth mom chose us, I haven’t posted anything besides baby Baby BABY!   

But there has been other stuff going on here…and now that I can breathe again, I’m going to try to catch up and document other goings on in our family from the past few weeks.







My first baby – forever my "baby" – is officially 11 years old now. 






She has – seemingly all of a sudden – grown from a chubby-faced little imp into a beautiful and amazing young woman. 





As much as she loves soccer, this girly girl would rather wear a dress or skirt than anything else. 





Elisabeth's hair is right now longer than it has ever been in her life.  She is growing it out to donate it...and hopes to have it long enough in the next few months here.






Elisabeth loves to work in the kitchen, so she and I get to spend much good mama/daughter time together that way...but she and her daddy have a beautiful love/love thing going on also.  






This picture below makes my heart smile:  Jas - having just teased and messed with Elisabeth - is grinning and pretending nothing happened - while Elisabeth pretends she minds...but her adoring smile tells otherwise.





Jas and I are the most blessed-est parents, and this girl started it all.  Parenting her has always been such a joy.





We love you so much, Libeth - and we're so proud of you, baby girl.  Keep seeking Him, striving to know Him and make Him known.



7.18.2014

And....exhale





Midnight marked the end of the 10-day window where A could "revoke her surrenders." (The papers that the parents sign are called "surrenders", at least by our agency.)


And now I feel like I can breathe freely again.







I realized a few days ago that I was inadvertently "holding my breath" until that time period was over.  I couldn't bring myself to post anything (although I have much to post about...always).  I just wanted to get to the other side of that window.


phew


Getting to meet A in person and spending several hours with her over two days was - in a word - magical.  I will forever be so, so grateful we had that opportunity.



We didn't have reason to expect that A would subsequently change her mind about signing the surrenders...but I'm glad the window has expired.



And if she had changed her mind and revoked, I would have been heartbroken, but not upset with her...but I'm glad the window has expired.



I know I said that the Lord would be right there with us if she revoked - and He certainly would have - but I'm glad the window has expired.




7.14.2014

Abigail's First Few Days Home



Our girl has turned one week old and has been home for about 5.5 days now.

She is the sweetest thing and is such a good baby.  I always bragged on what a good baby Gabriel was (is?), but I do believe little sister may have even G beat.


She hardly ever cries, in fact yesterday my dad commented that it was the first time he'd heard her cry.  And yesterday was also the first time she ever spit up.  (Although I believe this is related to what a good burp-er she is - not very lady-like in the burping area - which is a good thing for her tummy!)

She is eating every 3-4 hours during the day, and sometimes goes 4-5 hours between feedings at night.



















Abigail sleeps like a champ during the day, we hardly ever even catch a peek of her pretty eyes.  But at night, she was having more trouble, just more restless.  It finally occurred to me after the second night that it was just too quiet for her.  It is decidedly not quiet here during the day, and of course she was used to lots of good noises in the womb.  So Jas downloaded a white noise app onto his phone, and now Miss A (and Jas and I) get to listen to "Gentle Rain" all night...with some "Tree Frogs", "Wind in the Woods", "Bamboo Chimes" and "Rolling Thunder" mixed in for good measure.  She now sleeps well in her bassinet beside our bed until somewhere between 2 and 4 a.m., when she no longer wants to sleep alone, and ends up on daddy's chest (I cannot sleep like that, so Jas gets to do the honors).  







During the day, when Abigail is not being held by someone, she is in her bassinet.  We just wheel her around into whatever room we're all currently in (hence the noise she is very used to).  But one of the children will usually ask if they can hold her, and see no reason to say "no."  Between having to take turns with one another, and with guests coming to meet Abigail, the children still feel like they don't get to hold her enough.  In fact, Daniel said the other day that he wants us to adopt more...so they can each have their own baby!






Someone commented yesterday about our children's interest in Miss A, that the newness would "wear off."  But after seeing my older four with Gabriel, I know that the newness is not going to wear off...and I'm so thankful!

The children were not digging her umbilical cord - thought it was pretty gross looking - and are glad that it fell off yesterday.


Noah and I will stare at her face together, and he will say, "She is just so precious!"  He is ready for little sister to be more active, though.  He asked the other day, "Is she going to be more active soon?  All she does right now is eat, sleep and poop."  Noah was glad to be reminded that G went through the same "inactive" stage, and it was so short (relatively speaking) that Noah apparently doesn't even remember it.  

Abigail has started opening her eyes a leeeeeetle bit more during the day now...and she has such beautiful dark eyes.  I've tried to catch a picture of those eyes, but haven't been successful yet.  

  




Thankfully, Miss A loves the Moby every bit as much as G did.  I'm not using it as much yet for several reasons:  lots of helpers who want to hold her...and...well, it is HOT here (being July in the deep south).    But usually in the mid-afternoon she will get fussy a little bit, and won't be happy until she's in the Moby.  But once I slip her into the Moby she *immediately* stops fussing and is fast asleep.  I knew babies loved the Moby, but it is still amazing to witness the transformation: the first time I slipped A in, Elisabeth and I just stared at each other in wide-eyed amazement.  It seems like magic!





















The first thing out of LK's mouth in the morning:  "Whez the baby?"








Daddy taught G how to lift the fabric on the side of the bassinet and see "Ahgail" through the netting on the side.


Gabriel is smitten with "Ahgail".  He is very sweet and interested...but then runs off to play.  This is perfect, I was afraid he might try to be too "helpful" with a baby.


I think he might like her

He's not so sure about the fussing and crying, though (thankfully she doesn't do much of either).  When he hears her fuss/cry he gets a stern look and says, "Stop!"  and holds his palm out in the "stop" motion.


He has not shown any signs of jealousy.  I imagine it is because he still has plenty of other people to play with, even if one or two are busy with Abigail.


Sweet kisses












LaoLao getting her daily dose of Miss A










She makes the funniest and sweetest little baby faces, and we all love to watch.




She does cry and let us know when she's hungry!





All our treasures piled into bed with us on Sunday morning.  Thankfully they don't all sleep here...or we'd need a bigger bed!



Abigail's first time at church.  G *is* smiling.




7.09.2014

Introducing Our Daughter






Abigail Kristine
Born 9:08 a.m.
Sunday, July 6, 2014
8 lbs
19.5 inches






 
Yes, Jas is a little jealous of all that hair!























We arrived back home at almost 11 p.m. on Monday night.

While she sleeps GREAT during the day, at night...not so much.  This is her preferred sleeping position.





The oldest four meeting Abigail for first time (G arrived a little later):







Comparing her to G's "Little Boy"





Checking out tiny toes





 


















Gabriel meeting "Ahigail" for the first time:


First kiss



This is his camera smile lately (Lord, how long will this phase last?)




Trying to show "Ahigail" how to properly suck a thumb.  Seriously. "Look!"




Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise;
His greatness no one can fathom.
One generation commends your works to another;
they tell of your mighty acts.

My mouth will speak in praise of the Lord.
Let every creature praise His holy name for ever and ever.
(Psalm 145: 3,4,21)

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