Thursday, June 25, 2009

Tennis, an Antibiotic and a Two Year Old!

Hope with Matthew and Uncle Stevie

Hope meets Pawpaw Payne
Hope playing with Abbie and Emma

This past week has had its challenges but good times as well. Hope, Beth and I headed to Inverness Country Club last Thursday for a tennis tournament. Beth played at noon! Remember how hot it was? Hope and I found a sliver of shade and Hope entertained herself with sticks and dirt. Andy’s parents were also there. Then the three of us headed to the Galleria to shop. We entertained Hope by feeding her those yummy fries from J. Alexander’s. Thanks to Beth, Hope will always be well dressed and have plenty of clothes. Beth just finds all sorts of “adorable” things for Hope.

Friday was a big day. Hope got to meet her Mimi and Pawpaw Payne, Uncle Bart and his family, and her great grandmother. She also got to see her Aunt JoJo and cousins again. We had such a good visit. Once again, Hope went immediately to my brother but would never let any of the “women folk” hold her! Then it was back to the tennis court in Inverness where Beth won her next two matches to clinch the consolation title. For the first match at 1:30, Andy, Dow, and Andy’s sister, Robin and family, were there. For the last match at 4:30, I was on my own. Hope was tired, hot, and basically miserable. I wasn’t able to watch any of Beth’s match. Overall, she had been a trooper but just reached her breaking point.

Hope started a really strong antibiotic on Saturday and completely stopped eating. In the mean time, Andy and Dow were in Macon, GA for the Boy’s Southern tennis tournament. Monday morning, the girls and I headed to Macon. Dow was still in the tournament and Andy had to be in New Orleans Tuesday morning. Another hotel room! At bedtime, Dow was asleep, so I drove Hope around Mercer University to get her to sleep. Otherwise, she would have screamed and disturbed Dow’s slumber. She still had not eaten anything except for a few fries.

On Tuesday, Hope began refusing her antibiotic and I mean gagging and spitting and slapping. I never knew she was so strong!!! By noon, I had gotten some in her along with apple juice and a few Goldfish. While in the van, waiting on Dow’s next match, I got all of that back. Hope vomited and guess what, I only had some tissues to get it up! Fortunately, Dow had gone to sign in and didn’t have to witness this right before a match in a 100 degree weather. Sadly, Dow lost his match, but we are so proud of how well he played throughout the tournament. There were six southern states involved. Dow was one of 11 from AL. We headed home. Hope did great on the three hour drive home. I tried the medicine again but with no luck. That night, she finally ate something.

I talked to Hope’s doctor and was informed we have no choice but to continue with the antibiotic. Andy returned Wednesday evening and we were able to get two doses down. We are so glad to all be home and together. Hope is now saying “uh-0h” and “Bet” for Beth. We can’t wait for her language and speech to develop.

We are on our way this evening to eat veggies at Chip and Christy Colees. I for one, can’t wait!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Birthday and Other Fun Times!

Hope loves her new rocker
Hope registering her new Build a Bear
Samantha Grace and Hope
Hope turned two!

Hope celebrated her second birthday on June 13th. The celebration was low key. We baked some special cupcakes (given to us by the West family). As you can see in the picture, Hope was not sure about the candles. We took her to Build a Bear where she got a lamb dressed in froggy pj’s . Andy and Beth rode the carousel with her but she refused to ride one of the horses. They settled for the little carriage on the carousel.

Hope also enjoyed her first play date with Samantha Grace Duke. They played well together and enjoyed a grilled cheese for lunch. Hope attended her first bridal tea (Elizabeth Hart) tea last Sunday where she thoroughly enjoyed munching on cheese straws. She went to Sunday School for the first time last Sunday as well. I got a very good report on her. I enjoyed being back in my Sunday School.

She continues to do so well and seems so happy. She loves her family and enjoys giving really big neck hugs. She is keeping us busy. She has added “uh-oh” to her English vocabulary which now brings it up to two words including “cat.” She seems to understand a lot of what we say. Communication hasn’t really been a problem. As two year olds go, she is pretty easy. I can’t imagine adopting a child with issues or medical problems. My admiration for those who have has gone even to a higher level.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Life with a Two Year Old!

First boat ride
Our family with our pastor, Jay Wolf
Hope meets Mimi Carole
Hope meets Pawpaw Tony
Hope meets cousins, Abbie and Emma
Big brother, Dow, swinging his new sister

Oh, how I forgot the demands of a two year old! Life has been very busy at the Birchfield house since returning from Moldova. We took Hope to the International Adoption Clinic in B’ham on June 3rd. The doctor and the family therapist both thought Hope was doing well. She did have a really bad cold and possible ear infections. She had the lovely experience of having her ears cleaned out by the doctor. They had to draw blood from her arm to test for a lot of different things. We will get the results when we return on July 8th. We now need to see a pediatric audiologist and ophthalmologist just as a precautionary measure.

Hope enjoyed her first boat ride this weekend. She loved it and didn’t even mind the dreaded life jacket. She was all over the boat and liked to stand up and feel the wind. She also met one set of grandparents, Mimi and Pawpaw Tony. They brought her surprises from their mission trip to Costa Rico. Last Sunday night, she made her first appearance at church and met her sweet pastor and many other friends who had been praying for her. We plan to experiment with Sunday School soon. This past Sunday she met some more cousins, Amy, Abbie, and Emma, and her aunt Joanna.

Hope continues to adjust very well. She is getting much more selective with her eating, so we are sticking to a few favorites right now. She loves books and just jabbers as she looks at the pages. She was pretending to feed a doll with a spoon today. Like most two year olds, she wants every electronic item in our possession. This has caused a few “little tantrums.” We are still working on our sleep schedule. She hates being left alone and really doesn’t understand the meaning of “just a minute!” She likes the challenge of climbing up in chairs and on sofas, because she has never gotten to do this before. We are having a little trouble with biting, hitting , and throwing, but overall, she has a very sweet temperament.