Thursday, April 23, 2009

Some pictures...

Hallo everyone

We are doing well. I am posting some pictures from Easter. We spent Easter at Jeff's mom and dad's house. We had a great time. Leah really warmed up to her family and was full of smiles and giggles!

Our friend LeAnn and boys brought us a trunk full of jewelery and princess clothes. The girls had a great time dressing up. Even Karsten got involved in the fun!

I took these pictures yesterday outside our house. It was such a beautiful day! I always try to get some pictures in the Spring when the tulips are blooming. Notice how Leah has her arm around Sofia. We have seen some good sister moments lately...I am hoping for a lot more of that.

Friday, April 10, 2009

We are adjusting to life at home!

We are working on adjusting. It has been a busy week as a mom of 4. I don't know how you all with more kids do it... I feel like I don't have enough lap space and enough hands...

Leah is doing well. She is playing and enjoying her life with us. She calls Jeff and I pappa and mamma now. She is so cute when she talks. She says some Chinese words (I think) and she tries to speak some English words also. Her little voice is adorable. Her biggest issue is that she gets these crying spells sometimes that can last up to one hour. It mostly happens during the night, but we have had one spell like that during the day also. She cries, screams and kicks, and nothing I do seems to be able to calm her down. I think of them as her adoption, grieving cry. I hope they become less and less frequent as times goes on. We actually had a really good night last night. It was the first night she didn't wake up at all since we got home from China. I don't think we are over the hump yet, but I am so glad to see that it can happen. I still woke up tired because I woke up several times waiting for her to wake up and cry.

Sofia is not quite as whiny any longer. I think she is feeling better from her cold and she is getting more used to having me home again. The girls struggle with jealousy and sharing. I am guessing that is going to be our issue for awhile. This is definitely a big change for both of them. Kai and Karsten continues to be great big brothers. I have to go now, my little one are calling for my attention... Have a great day!!!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

We are home!!!

We are waiting at the airport in Shanghai

These teenage girls came over when we were sitting there waiting for our flight, and wanted to know if they could get their picture taken with Kai "the lady's man"

The trip home went very well. Other than the flight being way tooo long. As expected we were very tired when we got home. It was great to fly home with several of the other couples in our travel group. We arrived in Des Moines late Wednesday nigh together with two other families from the area.

It has been a busy couple days at home. We have had Dr. appointment for Leah, soccer game for Kai, piano lesson and a piano fundraising event for Kai. Karsten and Sofia have been sick since we got home with fevers and upper respiratory infections.

We have not slept well since we got home because of sick kids and jet lag. Even Kai has been awake every night complaining that he could not sleep. Jeff and I have traveled to Norway many times and have never had this problem before. 13 hours time difference really makes it hard to get back on track. We are so tired! I really hope we will start feeling better soon.

Leah is doing very well. She continues to smile and laugh around us. But she gets very shy and quiet around other people. We have had several friends and family stop by to visit. Leah likes to quietly disappear when others are around. Karsten and Leah have become very good friends. They play so good together. It makes us smile to see them roll around on the floor and giggle. We are very proud of Karsten and how he has embraced his new little sister with love. Sofia is struggling a little bit more. She has not been feeling well and she has been very clingy to me. She and Leah have had some battles over mamma's lap and attention. I have been trying to make sure Sofia gets as much love and care as possible because I don't want her to feel like Leah is taking her mamma away from her. We have also had several fights over toys and other items. They are both very strong willed. Leah has had a couple time outs on our steps. It is difficult because we want to show her love and give her security, but we also cannot let her get away with unacceptable behaviour. I can tell we have a long road ahead of us. I am sure it will work out at the end, but it is going to take a lot of work to get everyone adjusted.

On a positive note, I am posting some pictures of the girls taking a bath together tonight. They had a lot of fun in the tub. They gave each other a wonderful loving goodnight hug before they went to bed. There is certainly hope at the end of the tunnel...

Thanks for all the visits we have had the last few days! Thank you to grandma and grandpa for bringing pizza over tonight. In the past I have read blogs where they talk about how they are so thankful for meals they were able to prepare and freeze before they left for China. Well, we had 1 week notice before we left, so there is no food in the freezer:) After three days home I am finally almost done with laundry. But the suitcases and souvenirs are still spread out all over the dining room. Mail and bills are still unopened. I am sure I will get to it eventually.

I am very thankful that Leah seems to be doing so well. She is a extremly funny and happy little girl. We are so blessed to have her in our family. I cannot wait to continue to see her learn and explore and bond with her family!