Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.

James 1:27

He predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with His pleasure and will— to the praise of his glorious grace, which He has freely given us in the One He loves.

Ephesians 1:5-6

Learn to do good. Seek justice. Help the oppressed. Defend the cause of orphans. Fight for the rights of widows.

Isaiah 1:17

Monday, December 9, 2013

Home a Little More than a Week!!!

We are HOME!!! I was hoping to have a post written after a week home, but life is a bit...busy to say the least. Our home coming was sweet! Our flight to America was uneventful and really not too bad. We ended up in the way back which was to our advantage as the staff was close by and couldn't keep their eyes of the kids! They talked to them and gave us drinks. Thankfully we had our own row because Nina made MANY trips to the bathroom. i think she really just wanted to get up and walk, which I dont blame her. One flight attendant looked at Isac and said, wow he is big for his age, he is like what, 9 months? I said no, 2 years old, then he looked shocked and said OH THEN HE IS SMALL! When we got to Chicago we had to go through security, where the woman had a lot more sympothy for Nina's crying and rushed Josh and I through. Then we had to go through customs and sadly we had to go get our food checked because we had brought breakfast off the plane for Nina since she had just fallen asleep towards the end of the flight (of course) and meat from other countries is taken away.This got Nina pretty upset as I think she thought we were going through security again but the woman working told us that she had been through enough and that Josh could walk away with her. What a relief!
The short flight from Chicago to Tampa seemed the worst. After not getting even a minute of sleep on the long flight, and the kids getting maybe about 2 hours, we were ALL DONE! Isac cried pretty loud for the beginning but thankfully he settled down and fell asleep. The ride foe me was torture! I felt more done I think than Isac. Even though the ride was only 2 hours, I was just SO DONE!
I was an emotional mess when we landed, knowing I was going to see my children's faces again! I felt like I couldn't say hi and give hugs to each of them enough! It was so good to be home!!!
The first few days Josh and I could tell Levi was being a little distant from both of us. We aren't sure if maybe he didn't understand why we had left and maybe he was confused or angry, but he came around pretty quick and was his old self. We were both VERY impressed with how well Levi acted towards Nina and Isac. Very willing to share and want to play with them both. Isac on the other hand wasn't too thrilled with having to share mommy and daddy, and I think some of it also had to do with the fact that he didn't understand Levi. Levi would try and get him to play and Isac would just get mad and run away. I have seen some changes in that though. There have been moments when Isac and Levi will be boys and run around in circles just giggling away! Giving me hope that they will be best friends and partners in crime in no time!
The girls have loved on and spoiled both Nina and Isac. Though Isac is eating the attention up! He loves being carried around and given kisses by his big sisters!

Isac is a fun loving laid back boy. He giggles and laughs and is so silly at times. His sleep is coming, he usually only wakes up once sometimes two times a night, but is pretty easy to rock back to sleep. We started putting him in the room with Levi. It seems to be working out so far since Levi sleeps pretty hard in the middle of the night when Isac wakes up. Isac's medical appointments have gone pretty good. He cried through the blood draw, but didn't fight, he smiles through the doctors appointment where we found out he is a healthy boy other than his high lead count. The doctor said she has never had a child with a lead so high so she is looking into what is the best action to take for him. Isac's little fits are less often. He still has them every once in awhile, but being home and some sleep (and NOT being on a plane) has made them much easier to handle!

Nina is defenetly coming into her own. When we first got home there was a lot of not trusting us, snatching things from our hands if we were handing it to her, not wanting us to touch her without being very slow and careful and trying a few times, and being very unsure about listening to simple commands like come or sit or eat. I have seen simple commands become much easier for her to obey right away, she gently takes things from us and when we reach for her hands she doesn't pull away. She still does have moments of stubbornness when she decides she doesn't want to listen, but those moments have been a lot fewer. She cracks us up when we put her in time in (like timeout only we sit near her instead of sitting her alone somewhere so she can learn we aren't sending her away, she just needs a break to obey), what seems like the end of her world quickly turns to an I love you and lots of kisses. Kisses-Nina LOVES kisses! She still hasn't figured out how to give them, but she doesn't mawl us quite like before. Watching life through Nina's eyes has been SUCH a joy!!! Her first bubble bath her eyes got so big and her smile just as big! I hated taking her out, but the water was getting so cold. Going for a walk and seeing her eyes wind with wonder watching leaves fall. Walking on the grass without shoes, it took her some time to step out on it and for awhile it was only on her tip toes, but eventually she was running! Going for a ride in the car look equally as fun as she enjoys watching everything outside as it goes! THe whole world is so new! We take for granted everyday the things we do on a normal basis, stickers, ice cream, bubbles and grass, all everyday things children play with but all so new to Nina. Nina wasn't as much of a fan of any of her doctors appointments, she screamed through everyone. She really tried to be brave, but it was too much for her. At her neurology appointment we learned that the seizures are coming from all lobes of her brain and that her brain is underdeveloped. The doctor gave us an idea of what she thinks it might be but she said she wont be sure until she has an MRI (scheduled for this Thursday).
Life since we have gotten home as been a whirlwind. Josh and I have both had moments of  being overwhelmed, exhausted and tired. Unfortunately the jet lag hit me pretty hard making me feel like I had the flu at times, but thankfully that seems to have settled down. We are all getting used to each other and medical appointments mixed with uncertain diagnosis, lack of sleep and teaching both of the kids how our family operates, all equal a LOT of work, but even with all of this, there isn't a moment when either of us doubt this is exactly where God wants us! Just like Our pastor preached on  Sunday, Moses wanted to just stay a Shepard, he didn't feel equipped to do the things God was asking of him, but he went never the less, and God did GREAT things through him. i praise God for asking us to step out in faith, though definitely not easy, it is a true honor, I just pray we will survive! LOL

Prayer request-Nina's MRI she will be sedated, but because we had to do it this week they fit us in in the afternoon, which means Nina can't eat till after. It's going to be a loooong morning! Also keep praying everyone will keep working on bonding, Isac is there, he knows who mommy and daddy is, Nina is getting there, but there are still times when she would go to anyone who would pick her up. We have been and will be staying close to home for awhile to help her work on this.

our Thanksgiving blessings and new American citizens!!!

done with all our flights-mama trying to wake us up to meet our family! I am trying!

I on the other hand am not trying-I just sleep with one eye open.

Our sweet family who came and met us on Thanksgiving!

Part of our Hernando adoption group came and met us on their Thanksgiving! Thank you Michelle!

We have alll of our babies together at last!!

First ride in her car seat-they both did SOOO much better than I thought they would!

Double trouble

Relaxing after a looong day!

The next day we tried to stay outside as much as possible to help the jet lag.

I see crazy things in our future!

A quick visit to Nana and Papa's-in the tree house

Meeting the donkey's

And tractor rides.

Worn out!!!

Fell asleep on the floor while mommy and daddy fought to keep us up till 8pm

Snuggles with big sister

I'm such a cheese

Our first but VERY COLD AND QUICK trip to the beach

My family