Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Avika at One Month

Avika has been home with us for one month and has changed so much.  When I think about the little girl that walked into the room that first time we met her in Delhi the changes are astounding!
Of course she has grown physically- she's gained several pounds and grown an inch.  She's up a shoe size and her 2T clothes are fitting much better.
It seems as though she is attaching well to the five of us.  She is content to be held by Matt or me and lights up to see the kids after school or Matt when he comes home from work.
She loves to play with toys, especially pressing buttons, turning levers, etc. working her fine motor skills.  We are working on "be gentle" as she likes to throw things around once she's done playing.  She is very sweet with her doll, Latika (or LaLa) and gives her hugs and kisses and pushes her in the stroller.

Looking at her favorite book (about cats and dogs).  She's not much in to reading yet, but likes to flip the pages and touch-and-feel books...
She's very much a typical two year old climbing on everything and trying to find trouble.  The first time she climbed the stairs it took at least five or six minutes.  Now she scrambles up them so fast!
Loves to be outside where she can run around and be LOUD!

By far Avika's favorite thing to do is to take a bath.  She screams with delight until we get her into the water.  She loves to dump water on her head and face over and over.  Can't wait to take her swimming.  She might be our only real swimmer.

She also loves our cat and dog.  She follows them all over the house.  Maeve and Mojo are putting up with her very well considering how obsessed she is with them.  She's not talking yet, but she has definite sounds for each of the pets: a guttural screech that sounds kind of like "meow" or "wow" for the cat, and yelling "bow-wow" for the dog.  It is adorable (to us, probably not the animals!)
So while she isn't talking yet she does a lot of vocalizing.  She has started saying "mum" and "bop" a lot.  I'd love to say that she means "Mom" and "Pop", but she says this about just about everything. 
I'm happy that she has taken to the stroller for longer walks and running errands.  We are about to take a big trip and don't think I can manage if I have to carry her (or chase her as she runs away) the entire time.

The first couple of days home Avika pointed at her high chair constantly.  She has settled into more of a routine with eating, and seems to only ask for food when she is hungry at meal times.  She is very picky, and we are having a hard time finding lots of things for her to eat.  We keep trying different things, though, and she seems to be eating enough for now.  She loves her milk, cheerios, crackers, cheese, oatmeal, bananas, and feeding herself.  Thankfully it is fairly easy to give her her thyroid medication with yogurt.
Overall Avika is doing really well!  She has a lot of personality and it's fun to see it come out more and more as we get to know her.  She can be playful and fun and curious, she loves to see what her siblings are up to, but she'll play by herself for small stretches of time.  It seems like she can get worn out by meeting lots of new people or a lot of loud noises, but it's usually not too bad.  She's napping about an hour and a half in the afternoons and wakes up a couple times at night.  She probably sleeps as well as the rest of the kids did at this age, so it's nothing new for us!

Everyone wants to know how the older kids are doing in relation to Avika.  They are doing great!  They love to spend time with her and show her off to anyone we see.  They are always looking out for her safety and love to introduce her to anything that might be new to her.  Miles does not like having his sister mess up his Lego creations and drool on his cars, but is loving her through this transition.  Going from the baby of the family to older brother is proving to be a little challenging for him, but I am always surprised at how gentle and kind he is with Avika.  
And the other question we get is, "How are you doing?"  We are also doing well.  There are many unknowns as we learn our new daughter: is she throwing a fit because she's two?  because she's tired? because she's scared?  because it's just her personality?  will she grow out of this? should we be concerned...?  The questions go on and on.  Basically we have a lot to learn about Avika and who she is.  I am reminded often that we are just getting started.
The biggest transition in this for me had been going from three kids to four.  I thought this would be much easier!  What is one more kid when you already have three?  Ha!  I'm (very) slowly figuring out how to be a mom/wife/friend/functioning person with four kids and all that entails.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

First One Gone

Delia and I were both surprised when she lost her first tooth this week!  When I picked her up from school one day she announced her tooth had come out.  When I asked if it had been loose she told me, "No!  I was eating a piece of bread at lunch and it just fell out!"  Easy enough.

It was so tiny- you can barely see where it was.

The school nurse gave her a little box to take it home in.

She's growing up too fast!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Wake me up before you go-go

This is what happens when a toddler falls asleep in the car- messed up nap schedule and crashing on the couch.  I could eat this girl with a spoon.

Parade of Cakes

Birthdays in the Bong house really do seem to go on and on.  This year I think it was great for Miles to feel the center of attention for a bit with all the changes happening to our family.  Here he is on his actual birthday celebrating with cake with extended family...

Muffins with his class at preschool...
 Miles had his first proper birthday party with friends from school.  He requested a monster truck party (details to follow soon on my crafty blog), so this cake is supposed to be a monster truck.  He had so much fun! 
Happy Birthday my sweet Miles!  We love you so much!

And then there were four

The best part about having Avika home is seeing her with her siblings!  This was our second day home- all four playing together.
Hanging out with Isaac...
The older kids want to hold her hand everywhere we go. 

Delia is especially thrilled to finally have her sister home.  When adopting from India you are encouraged to be open to either gender, but Delia told us that she was getting a sister, end of story.  So happy that Avika is that little girl!
Showing Avika how to draw...
Delia saw this dress at Walmart and insisted we get it for Avika so they could wear matching outfits...

Thursday, September 04, 2014

Back to School- Miles

Miles' first day of his second year of preschool.
This is our seventh year at New Horizons (not including when I was a student!)  We love NH!

 Miles was so excited to be back at school with his friends from last year.  No tears saying goodbye to us here.  He only cried when Avika and I came to pick him up and take him home.  Glad this guy loves school.

Miles is Four!

Look who's four!  Miles Moses...

Can't believe my baby is no longer my baby.  I love this kid so much my heart could burst.

The 411 on Miles at four years old:
Best friend: Asher
Favorite food: pizza
Favorite color: green
Favorite book: Nighttime Ninja
Favorite TV show: Paw Patrol
Favorite things to do with Pop: go golfing
Favorite thing to do with Mommy: just have fun
Favorite thing to do with Isaac:  play Legos
Favorite thing to do with Delia: help her with art stuff
Favorite thing to do with Avika: give her hugs
When I grow up I want to be: a rocket ship guy
If I could go anywhere I would go to: space

 Miles is FUN, helpful, kind, silly, snugly, easy going, funny, loyal and thoughtful.  He loves to play with Legos, cars, planes, and blocks.  He is super speedy on his scooter.  He is the pickiest eater.  He gives the best hugs.  He makes us all laugh at every meal.  He is amazing and we love him so much!