Friday, December 26, 2008

Celebrating Christ's Birth!

Wednesday, we celebrated Christmas Eve at home with Susan's mom, Barbara, a.k.a. "Mema." We had a nice dinner of filet mignon, baked potatoes, asparagus, and pineapple upside-down cake. Oh, we also served Cheerwine, a cherry cola-type beverage found here in the Carolinas that contains caffeine. (We'll get back to that shortly.)

After dinner, William read the Christmas story aloud from the Bible while the children performed a re-enactment. Jeremy was Joseph, Marissa was Mary, Annika was an angel (demoted from baby Jesus in previous years), and Benaiah now had the part of Baby Jesus. Mary didn't labor as hard as she had in previous years, and Baby Jesus fled the scene as fast as he could. The holy scene quickly degraded into chaos! The Cheerwine had kicked in! The cast got too hot since it was over 60 degrees outside, and took off their clothes! We ended up sending them out onto the deck outside in their underwear to cool off and calm down. I'm marking my new calendar with a note to not give them any caffeine for Christmas!

Christmas morning, Mema came back for our gift exchange.

Jeremy was totally stoked to get an iPod shuffle! He is still SO EXCITED!! He only got the one package, and it appeared to be just 2 shirts until he took them out and found the iPod. What a happy boy!

The girls enjoyed wearing their new boots and playing with their umbrellas in the warm outdoors. They also got swimming Ariel mermaid dolls with which they were dying to take a bath!

got a rag doll that was made by another adoptive mama. We named the doll "Ezana." Benaiah loves him! I love it when he walks around with Ezana hanging out of his mouth by an arm or leg! Ezana frequently has baby slob on him! Benaiah also got a new top tooth for Christmas!

We were to celebrate with Susan's family later on Christmas day, but Barbara got sick, so we're hoping to see her and Susan's sister and her family on Sunday now. Then, we'll have another Christmas celebration next week with William's parents. We have just begun!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Happy 8th Birthday, Marissa!

Wednesday was our sweet, beautiful Marissa's birthday. She made blueberry muffins for everybody for breakfast. They were delish, of course!

Mr. Snowman came and rang the doorbell as usual. He likes to visit on Marissa's birthday. He used to be taller than her!

Jeremy gave her a Lil' Kinz cat that he purchased with his own money.

We went to our home school group's Christmas party. There were probably 70 kids there! William got to go too!

We celebrated at Mimi's for dinner. Her friend, Miriam, joined us for the festivities.

After dinner, Marissa opened her gifts. Daddy and Mama give her an add-a pearl and the next nesting doll each year. She got 4 Webkinz and was very, very happy!

Hoof and Mouth

This week we received some ornaments at our house. First, I had ordered a really cool ornament from another adopting mama, Kara. It came along with the really cool bib Benaiah is sporting in the photo. (It was hard to get a photo with him on the move such as he is!) Both cool items are for sale on her blog HERE! You can help them bring home their baby daughter.

At lunch time, we opened the package from Grandma and Grandpa that contained an ornament for each member of our family. The kids saw to it that they all were hung on the tree.

Later in the day, I caught Benaiah with something in his mouth. This is not unusual. Whatever he had was really good and he didn't want to give it up. Turns out that it was the hoof off of Santa's reindeer -William's ornament. Nobody claims to know what happened. I think the reindeer is in the shop with some super glue...

I just couldn't resist posting about the hoof and mouth.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Not everything that comes on a spoon is evil!

We have been trying to get Benaiah interested in eating some "real" food.  At first, he was totally uninterested in anything that didn't come out of the bottle. Then, one day, a friend suggested I create "banana foam". This is genius. I put a half a banana in a bowl and hit it with the stick blender. This turned it into liquid, and then foam. It was a big hit. Then we tried green beans the same way, and peas, then applesauce, and last night Shiro Wat (Ethiopian Yellow Peas). I'm not sure we have "turned the food corner", but things are definately looking up.  At least he dosn't push away the spoon and make unhappy noices when I try to put food in his mouth.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


We are adjusting pretty well. We went several weeks with night after night of bad sleeping. Benaiah was waking up every 1-2 hours.

While we were buying shea butter at the local African market, a wise man from Ivory Coast told us that the bumps on Benaiah's face were heat rash and shared that he also gets that. He cannot sleep with covers up past his waist. So, that night when we put Benaiah to bed, we did not cover him. He slept so well! No blankets or heavy jammies for him! He even gets uncomfortable when we leave on his socks.

Benaiah is comfortable with sleeping in-between us in the king bed now. We like having him there. We were taken aback that he didn't care to sleep with us right away, but now that he has claimed us as his own, he is good with it! He still uses the crib when he first goes to bed and for naps; however, yesterday, he managed to flip himself out of it! YIKES!

We have yet to declare publicly that WE HATE BOTTLES!!! Nursing is so much more convenient! Benaiah is getting 1-2 bottles of Susan's breast milk each day, but it is still a bottle. We are constantly rounding up the dirty bottles and running the dishwasher.

We have put 2 pounds on the boy in the 5 weeks he has been in our care! He is going on 17 lbs. now.

We are easing back into a school routine only to be derailed by the birthday and holidays in the next few weeks. Ahhhh! (Marissa's is the 17th, and Annika's is the 31st!)

The kids are dying to put up the tree, but William and I know the battle that lies ahead with Benaiah in the house. He is RUNNING, and he puts EVERYTHING in his mouth. This is an unbreakable ornament year for sure.

As you can see, Jasmine is taking it easy these days. She really enjoys a nice nap outside on the colder days. When she isn't sleeping on the deck, she is on the couch -sometimes, sunny-side-up! I just missed that photo!

Monday, December 1, 2008