Wednesday, August 18, 2010

State Fair

We went to Indianapolis to have our 1 year post adoption follow up visit with our social worker last Friday.  A couple of the ladies that helped throughout the entire adoption process came out to meet Bella.  It was bittersweet for us all.  I can't imagine what their jobs are like.  So wonderful to see so many children united with their forever families ... I would LOVE to be a part of that someday!

We decided that since we were Indy, we should make a weekend of it.  We visited some dear friends we went to college with and had dinner with them.  We enjoyed seeing them and are looking forward to another visit soon!

We spent the night with my sister and her family and headed out to the State Fair the next morning.  We weren't sure we wanted to brave the tremendous heat, but there was a cloud cover and we got an early start.  Let me tell you, we had a blast!  Probably the best state fair experience ever!  The kids loved it and enjoyed seeing all of the animals, playing the different games and doing the activities they had set up and just being farmers for the day.  Michael and I both grew up in 4-H and it is sad for me to know that our kids probably won't get involved just because of the area we live in.  It would be pretty hard to put a barn with cows and pigs in our backyard!  But at least with the fair, they get a taste of the experience.  The thing they haven't stopped talking about it the largest pig - wow, he was huge this year!

Here are some pics from our day...

Miss  Bella loving up to the baby goat

Keenan is such a sweetie with the animals

Bella feeding a goat a carrot

My precious boys

Bella, Keenan and I doing some fishin'

Aidan ... a little too small to take on the combine

Keenan being a farmer for the day

What a cheeser!

My precious niece Addy ... the hat was a little too big, but gosh she is adorable!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

What happens in One Year?

This is a question I have been asking myself and thinking about for about a week now.  Why?  Because 1 year ago today, Bella joined our family forever.  One year ago today I saw the most precious, beautiful little girl walk (almost hopped) into our lives forever.  She was just so happy and thrilled to be apart of this new adventure although I don't think she had a clue what that meant ... leaving the only family she knew, leaving the only home she proabably remembers and leaving her home country. 

We went out tonight and celebrated by eating some Chinese food.  Even though PF Chang's is one of our favorite restaurants, the food there is nothing like the food we experienced in China.  But nonetheless Bella devoured noodles and rice and even dessert.  We then came home and the kids jumped into the pool.  All in all it was a great night!

One year has flown by in so many ways and yet one year seems like forever.  It seems like she has been part of our family forever and in a way she has, she has always been in our hearts, we just did not have a face to put with the little girl we knew God had planned for us. 

I have been trying to think of all of the things she has experienced and done in one year.  It is hard because I am with her everyday, sometimes I don't see the changes.  It isn't until someone says something, or until we sit back and really think about it.  Bella has grown so much!  She has gained at least 5 or 6 pounds, which is a lot for such a little thing.  She has also grown so much taller.  I went through 3 pairs of shoes this past Sunday to find a pair to fit her.  They seemed to fit her just days before! 

She has been through 3 surgeries with another one scheduled for this fall.  She has learned to speak a little and also use signs, but there is never a question of what she wants.  She understands everything!  She is very vocal and demanding and STUBBORN!  She has such a little personality.  She likes to test her boundaries and loves the word "NO!"  She loves to sing and dance.  Watch out American Idol!  She loves to read books and she loves pandas.  She enjoys playing with puzzles and could live in the water if we let her.  She loves her brothers and they love her.  She wants to be outside whenever possible riding her bike.  She has learned to run and jump.  She loves to be tucked into bed and gives great eskimo kisses.  She squeals when she knows she is going to her grandparent's houses.  She eats almost anything that is put in front of her, but her favorite things are cottage cheese, fruit, pudding and mac-n-cheese.

These are just some of the things we have learned about our little girl in the past year.  She is fearfully and wonderfully made by our Lord and she is our precious gift.  Happy Bella Day!