Sunday, March 28, 2010

Our Girly-girl Tomboy

Avery is growing up with 2 older brothers so she is getting quickly introduced to all sorts of boys stuff: Race tracks, sports, cars, trucks, etc. This weekend, she tagged along to soccer games, lacrosse games and attended her first drag race at Lowes Motor Speedway. She shows early signs of being quite an athlete herself...she can run very fast (probably faster than her 5 year old brother---shhh!), she can just about bend herself into a pretzel and climb anything. She is super flexible, which obviously she didn't get from our family! :)

These are a couple photos of her enjoying the view of her first drag race...and notice this "Tomboy" didn't leave home without her all of her glittery princess jewerly on!

Update Two Months home:
Avery continues to do well at home. We rarely have any issues with her behavior at all. She doesn't like to share with her 2 year old cousin, but I don't think her 2 year old cousin likes to share with her all the time either! :) So it's typical two year old stuff. She also doesn't appreciate anyone taking food out of her hand or off her plate, and given her prior exeriences that makes sense. She sleeps VERY well, so well, I think it's a tad strange. I can put her on her bed any time of day and she will sit and/or lay there and not make a peep until I tell her she can get up. If I want to run for 30 minutes on the treadmill at 4:00 in the afternoon, I'll put her on her bed and she will just wait there patiently until I finish. I give her a couple toys to play with and she is content to stay as long as need be. I find this strange. None of my other kids would ever stay put like that in an empty bedroom while awake. But, maybe she likes the quiet time, or her comfy bed. I haven't figured it out yet.
She never seems to rock back and forth anymore (she did this here and there when she was upset.) She does cry loudly, and sometimes can carry-on for a few minutes longer than seems appropriate...but these episodes are few and far between.
Her speech is not really improving as quickly as I thought it might. However, she understands almost everything we tell her. If I tell her to go upstairs and get her pink shoes off of her bench in her bedroom, she will do just that. If I tell her to go downstairs and get her cup, she will come back up with her cup. So right now, she understands about 80% of what we tell her but can only say about 10%. We are hoping her speech will come around as she continues to process things around her.
Eating has gotten better but still just hit or miss with what she'll eat. One day she'll eat pasta and the next day she wants nothing to do with it. So we are flexible and just let her eat what she wants. I think she has gained 1 pound in 2 months, which isn't much, but given how picky she was at meal time for the first month...I am not surprised. She is of average height for her age and a little below average for weight but very much on the growth chart! If there were a growth chart for feet size...she would be off the chart! She almost wears the same size shoe as our five year old!
Some of her favorite things: Nutrigrain bars, brushing her teeth, pushing her doll stroller, singing/babbling in the car with the radio, playing on playgrounds, and bedtime! :)

Sunday, March 21, 2010


Caden has been diabetic for 6 1/2 of the 8 years of his life. Since he was diagnosed our family has raised thousands of dollars for Junvenile Diabetes Research and we are still very passionate about this organization. Currently, we are caught in the middle because his school was #1 in the nation last year for the amount of money raised for the American Diabetes Association. We don't "dislike" ADA, but we have always felt a stronger connection to JDRF given our son has Junvenile diabetes (which is out of his control) and not Type II diabetes. Either way, the past couple years he has chosen to raise money with his school which is understandable, so we are supporting his decision. Plus, our school does ear mark the money for children to attend summer camps (diabetes camp) which is a great cause and Caden LOVES going to diabetes camp each year.

If you're at all interested in donating (even a dollar is super exciting for him!) here is his personal URL that will allow you to donate online:

His school gets VERY into this cause and last year raised about $50,000 which put St. Mark as the top school in the nation. Thanks in advance!!!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Adopted kids and speech

So, we are making great strides with Avery over the past week. Her diet which basically consisted of oatmeal and goldfish crackers now includes: soup, mashed potatoes, spaghetti, meatloaf, peanut butter sandwiches and yogurt! The other day she even ate rice with broccoli! She is really starting to try all sorts of foods and that is a HUGE relief. When we were away in NY she literally only ate goldfish and NOTHING else for the 2 days we were there. So I was starting to panic. Since we returned home, each day she is eating really well so we are hoping this trend continues.

Her tantrums are few and far between. I haven't really seen any this week. I know she has a few during the day when I am at work as she and my 2 year old niece attempt to "share" toys! :) But, other than that, she is behaving VERY well.

Our main concern right now is speech/language development. I am not concerned enough just yet to start any formal therapy, but I do see that in the near future. Just curious how many others with toddlers home from Haiti are experiencing the same thing. Avery tries to repeat almost everything we say, which is great. However, everything she says sounds the same. For example, love you is da do. Thank you is ta tu. Doggie is da da. Papa is da da. Please is dee. Pretty much everything she says is starts with the "da" sound. The only exception is Mommy which she says Nonny. It seems like she can only make a handful of sounds and can not make most sounds at all. Anyone else out there experiencing this? Honestly, she prefers to get through the day by pointing and saying "da". I correct her and tell her what to say, and she tries, but it doesn't even come close to sounding like the right word. Just wondering if this is normal/beginning to learn a new language stuff or sounds more like a major problem that needs intervention sooner rather than later.

Any input or advice?

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Avery - Home 6 weeks

Can't believe it's already been 6 weeks since Avery came home! I guess because we have been so busy with work and doctors appts, time just flew right on by. Today we had another doctor appt for Avery's first round of immunizations. We got lucky and she only got one shot today. She is now limping around as her little leg must be sore. She will barely put any weight on it and she whines every now and then if she does.

She is 35 inches and up to 26 pounds. So even though she is not a big eater, she did gain a pound. Yesterday she ate lasagna, and today soup, so things are looking up! Even more exciting, she sleeps in her own bed for 11 hours and never wakes! A very sound sleeper! We are still dealing with poop issues...right now she is positive for C. Diff. and being dewormed and treated with some other meds (like Flagyl.) I sure hope these issues get resolved and don't end up hanging around forever. This week we are collecting stool samples and turning them into the state lab to see what else they find lurking in there.

She is attemping English but has a severe problem with pronunciation of most everything. For example, Mommy is "Nonny", Papa is "Tata", and shoe is "to", etc. There are some sounds she just can't make at all.

This past weekend, she and I flew to NY to visit Mike's mom and to attend a party for Avery. She did GREAT on the plane, no problems at all. She behaved just as well in NY and we escaped the weekend without a single meltdown or tantrum. I was shocked! :) She received so many nice things, and this girl has enough clothes to wear a new outfit everyday until next year! One of Granny's bestfriends made Avery a teddy bear out of Poppy's old shirt, so she'll always have him close even though she never got to meet him since he passed last June. She also got an embroidered blanket that says "Avery: A little lady from Haiti" So cute!

Overall, although she can be quite hyperactive, she is doing super. Way better than I ever imagined
That's the latest!