Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Sweet 16---a little phlegmy, but ok

Today is Karina’s 16 month Birthday.  I had planned on taking some “fancier” pictures, but she woke up last night with the beginnings of a cold—so, we’re just hanging out at home today, wiping her nose, watching the Muppets (right now, the Muppets version of the Frog Prince on an old VHS tape—the original with “sweetums” as the ogre)and staying warm.  We’re ok—no fever, just a cold with a red nose, and hopefully better soon!

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I should introduce you to someone very important in these pictures.  This is (tah-dah!) Slicky Bunny.  Well, technically, this is Slicky Bunny’s sister, Slicky Bunny.

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Slicky Bunny was one of the first things that I bought for Karina—a long time ago, when we were very early in the process.  She lived in our bedroom for a long time, since I had read that you should take something over for an adoptive child that smells like you and your house so that they can get used to the smell.  Well, there were several nights that the bunny and I snuggled and prayed for things to work out as God wanted them to!

When we got ready to leave on trip 1, I decided that the bunny would definitely be one of the things that went with us.  In case she was left behind in Russia, I ordered a second bunny that was much like her, so we would have a back up at home.  K was not really all that interested in her until trip 3---when she became an indispensible part of our going to sleep routine:

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Karina would rub the “silky” lining of the bunny on her face, and then suck the three fingers of her left hand.  She still does this every once in awhile (especially if she’s been upset or over-tired) but much less than she used to.  In fact, I just looked over and saw that SB has fallen to the floor---not needed right now.  Hopefully that means that K is feeling better!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Hope a Happy Valentine’s Day you had. Yes……


Just pictures this time.  In case you’re wondering what Yoda has to do with Valentine’s Day (or, in case wondering you are), he was Karina’s Valentine gift to Steve.  They’re almost exactly the same size!

(Thanks to Sus and Brad for coming over Sunday night and babysitting so Mom and Dad could go to dinner together---we love them both SO much!)

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Monday, February 8, 2010

Fun with Mimi and Papa Tom…

More pictures from my Mom and Dad’s visit on Saturday:

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 We also enjoyed a yummy (messy!) cookie later on:

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Update:  today we went to the county health department to have K’s TB test done.  We had to wait 30 days after her vaccinations, and today was the best day for meeting that schedule.  We’ll go back on Wednesday to have it read.  She was a trooper---she cried when I held her arm and the needle went in, but once it was over she was ready to go.  We celebrated with a trip to Barnes and Noble and then came home to be out of the snow!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

the “face”

Karina has this face she makes.  Well, ok, back up.  She makes LOTS of faces.  The child is just incredibly expressive.  But the other evening we were playing a version of “peek-a-boo” where she covers up her head (or I cover up her head) with this little blanket that she has and then she pulls it off.  She started making this “surprised” face that just cracks me up every time.

I’d been telling people about it, but haven’t been able to get a picture of it until this afternoon.  Mom and Dad dropped by after Jack’s wrestling meet, and she did it for them.  Lucky me (because I hadn’t planned on this) the camera just happened to be close by, and I now have at least 1 really good picture of this for posterity.

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This isn’t quite it---but it’s almost there.  What a snickerdoodle!

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Thursday, February 4, 2010


In the last picture I posted, K looks more like a sheepdog than she does a little girl.  These are more from that same night:

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This is partly because, when we met her in September, her hair (especially her bangs) was incredibly short:


I thought she looked like Moe.  But in a good way. (Please, no comments about MY hair, or the fact that I look like I haven’t slept in several days---I hadn’t, but I have since then! :-))

So, we’ve been glad to see her hair growing out.  However, due to the sheepdog pictures, and the fact that she won’t put up with bows or pony tails in her hair (they get yanked out, unless we use those really tiny rubber bands that they put on dogs!)

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(Thank you, Auntie Susan, for the fabulous do!)

We decided it was time to have the bangs trimmed.  So it was off to my friend Danella on Monday.

It was, I should state, not a “fun” experience.  Danella was valiant, but it was much like trying to cut the cats’ hair.  But the end results are really cute!

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Many thanks to all of you for the suggestions about the Aveeno---we love it!  you can tell that her face is looking much better.  It’s still a bit dry and red, but not nearly as bad as it was.  Her skin all over is much, much better. 

We also found some really good stuff by a company called “California Baby”—they make an aloe vera cream that not only isn’t really greasy, but K actually likes it on her face.  We slather it on all the time, when we remember to.

Love to all of you!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Things I have learned in the last 5 or so weeks…

As a college graduate, with more than one graduate degree, I used to think that I pretty much knew all that I really needed to know, or would know.  Not that I wasn’t open to new information—as a professional scholar, that’s part of the job.  However, I had no clue that I would learn the following, and that I would be initiated into it SO quickly! :-)  I’m sure that you can all add to this list, and perhaps the fact that I didn’t know them shows how naive I am.  Fair enough :-)  It has been FUN (mostly) learning the following:

1.  no matter what toys you buy for your child (educational, best reviews on Amazon or in magazines or wherever), they probably won’t like what the educators say they should.  They will, instead, have more fun with the boxes and bags the toys come in, the paper they are wrapped in, or they will have the most fun with something you were going to throw away.  Karina’s absolute favorite toys are (1) an empty ice cream tub and (2) the teething toy she refuses to chew on but loves to put into said empty ice cream tub.  Tonight we added two wooden spoons that can be used to (A) beat on the empty ice cream tub and (B) chew on.  She won’t chew on the teething toy but LOVES to chew on the wooden spoon.  Hmmm…..

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2.  articles of clothing can complete disappear.  Quickly.  I took Karina to the history department a couple of weeks ago to meet with a former student (who wanted to appeal his grade from last semester) and to meet the secretaries and some fellow teachers.  When I got her into the car in the parking garage, I noticed that one of her shoes was GONE.  She has learned very quickly about velcro in the past 5 weeks.  I looked all through the car, under the carseat, in the diaper bag, and have torn our house apart thinking perhaps it never actually made it to the car in the first place.  No dice.  My sister’s theory is that Karina cunningly constructed a catapult from assorted stuff in the diaper bag (a la MacGyver) and shot it out the window when I wasn’t looking, not being fond of black Mary Janes.  I think it probably fell under the car in the parking garage, and is now one of those random lonely shoes that you see in odd places. 

3.  continuing on from #2, you start to lose parts of your mind.  Case in point.  Saturday I went shopping with my sister and bought a pink jacket to match a skirt that I have at home that nothing else matches and a new pair of running shoes (in the hopes that they will guilt me into exercising again).  When I got home, I realized that (1) I had bought the wrong size shoes because I mistook the large B on the tag of my old shoes for an 8, and I really needed an 8 1/2 and (2) the skirt that I thought I had to match the jacket was not in my closet, and was a victim of my “it’s too big” closet purge this fall.  Today, K and I went back to exchange the shoes and buy something to match the jacket (which matches nothing else in my closet).  When I got home and went to hang up the new skirt, guess what I found?  The original skirt!   Perhaps the part of my brain that used to contain this stuff is now occupied by things like the words to “Abby’s Flying Fairy School” and “Murray had a Little Lamb”? 

4.  you look forward to the window of time in the middle of the day called “nap time.”  Really.  I love my daughter dearly, and I am so glad that she is here, but I get very little done when she is awake except to play with her.  I realize that this is mostly my problem—playing with her is fun.  I’m working on this process, but I have a huge pile of Thank You notes to write that just isn’t getting the attention it needs, plus the blog, etc. etc. etc. 

5.  diaper blow-outs happen most often when (1) you’re just ready to walk out the door and you’re already running late and/or (2) you just dressed your child in the “cutest” outfit ever in hopes of impressing people with how cute your child is. 

6.  you may think you’re ready, but you’re not.  You’re not ready for how tired you are going to be, how much extra laundry there is to do, how disorganized and messy your house can get that fast, how you never get to eat unless you make time to do it (unless it’s stuff that’s bad for you, then you find a huge amount of time to eat that!) or how much you’re going to love them. 

Anyone want to jump in here?  I’m sure you can add to this list :-)