For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


The best laid plans of mice and men (or something like that).... I have been trying to get back to blogging on a regular basis; however, our house is "adjusting" once again to an added member. Rather than get stressed, I have given myself permission to just take life as it comes these days, and sometimes that means that my "intentions" and "ideas" never get met. I am ok with that, I think... but sometimes my "ideas" get the best of me, and I want to accomplish so much more than I do in a given day, week, or month even.
As for Toby, he is adjusting better than we could have even imagined. He is the happiest little boy. He smiles and laughs. He shouts for joy when he sees his brothers and sisters. He loves to go, go, go, and then he loves to come home again to be with his family. There have been several occassions when Brad and I have had to run a few errands, leaving the teen to babysit. To keep from hindering Toby's attachment to us, we take him along. He is happy to go, to be with us and to see all there is to see in our great big world. There is nothing sweeter than to see his reaction when we return home! He runs around the house finding each sister and brother... racing around to deliver his great big hugs to each one.
This boy loves to eat. I tease Brad ,often, that there is only one thing Toby loves more than his daddy, and that is FOOD, FOOD and more food. He has begun to adjust to the volume of food and even stops when he is full. He just loves his meal times! He loves to try new and different foods! To this point there isn't anything he won't try and very,very little that he doesn't like.
He loves to sing and listen to music. He and I sing preschool songs a lot, and I can't help but laugh a lot as he loves to follow "hand signs" and make a few of his own to go along with our silly songs. He loves to sing along at church with all of the worship music. Most of what he sings is unintelligable, but you can make out a few words and most importantly "Jesus, oh Jesus". He is picking up on English rapidly, understands what we say to him, and sounds much like a parrot mimicking everything we say to him. He has learned most of the kiddos names, and is beginning to make them clear sounds.We are teaching him baby "sign language". He is very astute and picks up on the signs and words quickly. He can now sign and say "please", "eat", "drink", "thank you" and "diaper" (thank you sounds like "chank chew" and diaper like"deye der").
He is so very precious and sweet. His personality is gentle, but he is learning to make himself heard in our large crowd.  He has begun to love on momma again (praise Jesus), and allows me to care for him during the times that daddy is away. But, I have to say that I am "TOAST" when daddy is around. He is most definitely his daddy's boy! He has more than enough hugs for each of his family members, and we are thrilled that he is attaching and prefers to stay close to family at this time (sometimes this is not the case for adopted children, and they readily go to others because they are unable to form firm attachments to family).
As you can see, he is adjusting amazingly well! As a matter of fact, the only hard adjustment for him has been at bedtime, but he is trusting us more and learning to not fear sleeptime.  We have implemented a bedtime "routine" and he loves listening to stories, being rocked and cuddled with a bottle (we continue to give him a nighttime bottle to further strengthen bonding and attachment), and then ,momma,  or daddy, or both sing to him, kiss him good night, and then it is off to bed. He has begun to go into his bed without crying or "meltdowns". This is a big step, and we are having fewer and fewer wake episodes during the night as well.

As for the family, we are adjusting well, but it is an adjustment none the less. The other children are having to learn to share our time even further and for some this is harder than for others. Many times they don't want to have anything to do with us (busy with their own "little" world) EXCEPT when the newest member is needing our care and attention. Sometimes, the ugly "green-eyed" monster appears...more often than we care to deal with it. Many times there are several "temper-tantrums" (and not always the 2 yr old).  It is an adjustment for Brad and I too. We are having to remember what it is like having a toddler in our home. He is an active, ornery "boy" toddler who needs constant supervision. We are learning that when a sibling "wants to play" that they aren't always reliable at staying with and watching the said toddler. We are learning that he likes to explore, touch and play with anything he can get his little hands on.  He isn't potty-trained as yet, and so that means constant diaper changes (forgot about the added duty that entails). Many days nothing at all gets accomplished except for holding, loving and cuddling my kiddos and helping my newest treasure adjust. I remind myself often that nothing else matters except for those precious treasures that God has entrusted to my care. Time management is perhaps our biggest struggle...learning what we can and cannot accomplish at this time in our lives.  We are still serving as Children's ministers at our church. Brad still works for Sprint, and we still homeschool. So, we are learning to adjust our time, adjust our ideas and projects and adjust our attitudes. That is just it!  It is all a "time", a "season", that we will get through, and our routines will be back together and life will move forward in a new normal. It is our prayer that we will move forward serving our Lord in any way that He calls us. ...and, I cannot wait until our "new Normal" is challenged once again by yet another of His callings (whatever and whenever that may be)!