A dear friend in Kenya just emailed me a bazillion questions and my brother called from Denver yesterday. Must be time to blog and answer some of the questions about how things are going our first week home.
We came home one week ago last night. When we arrived at the airport near midnight, our whole family was waiting for us. Monica and Kelly, my parents, Zach’s mom, Jeff, Kristen and their kids, Kristen’s sister and dad. It was awesome. Zach and I knew what was waiting for us and I couldn’t wait to see everyone. The first people I saw down the hall through the windows were Victor and Jesus. They were on lookout for us. As soon as we stepped off the underground transport, they yelled, “THEY’RE HERE!!!” I saw the girls giggling and bouncing in anticipation and I got tears in my eyes. What a joy it was to hug them! Everyone kind of stood around us, looking at Diego, not sure what to do. Kelly and Monica gave him hugs and then everyone else joined in, speaking all manner of Spanish, English and Spanglish. They had balloons and posters and chocolate! Diego was delighted to see everyone in person. What a trooper he was. After a 16 hour day of traveling, he was still smiling and calm.
The weekend was busy as we unpacked, shopped for tennis shoes that fit Diego, and had Sunday dinner at my parent’s house. The girls had a rough go jumping back into the swing of things with Mommy and Poppy. The three kids hit it off well, but Monica and Kelly definitely had to work out some of their own personal issues with each other. All in all, it was a rocky weekend for them. The good news is that only lasted for 2 days. We have had a wonderful week with no problems. Zach went back to work on Monday, the girls went to school, and I stayed home with Diego. I’ve taken the rest of the school year off so I can help all the kids with the transition, especially Diego. We had expected the girls to have a rough time for a long time but we keep praying and working with them so hopefully life will continue smoothly as it has this week.
Next week we will take Diego to the IAC at Children’s to check on his health and development. Then, on March 11 he will start Kindergarten. He’s been riding with us everyday to drop off and pick up the girls from school. I asked him if he was excited about starting school and he said no. However, the teacher he will have speaks Spanish and her name in Spanish is Senora Dulce, Mrs. Candy. He wasn’t excited about meeting her, but on Thursday after school we stopped into the office to say hi to her. She got down on her knees, introduced herself, asked Diego how old he was. He just smiled and held up 6 fingers. Then, she asked him what his favorite animal is. He didn’t answer. So she said, “Mi animal favorito es un gallotito.” (My favorite animal is a rooster). He thought that was hilarious. Then we toured her room and she showed him where the Spanish books are, the stuffed animals for reading, and how to sit on a carpet square. He was very obedient and seemed totally taken with her. All night long and the next morning he didn’t stop talking about his teacher Senora Dulce whose favorite animal is a rooster. He is excited about school now.
I am having fun with this houseful of children. I’m not exhausted, and it feels so natural to have these three kids sitting around the dinner table everyday. Zach and I are so blessed and amazed at how our family has come together. We think it’s beautiful and right. Thank you to everyone for all your prayers for our adjustment as a family of five. We know that the power of prayer is great and we believe that this is God’s perfect design for our family. We are prepared for the ups and downs of parenting these children, but right now, I am so very thankful that this week has been easy!
A few other quick and cute things. Diego used to say WOW to everything new. Now he says, “OH my GOODness” to all things new. Like the cold weather, the snow, slippers, hot showers, the dogs, Lena licking his face, the food we eat, Jungle Jims, long car rides, snow boots, a bicycle in a box, gymnastics meets, Abuela coming to visit, the shades on his bedroom windows, a winter jacket. And to many things he will point and say what we’ve been saying many times a day, “No touch.” To the locks on doors, the thermostat, the buttons on the dishwasher, sharp objects, the computer, the faucet in the bathtub, mommy’s make-up, the lights inside the van. He’s learning. He’s a good kid and he’s stinkin’ cute! Glad to have him home.
I’ll post a family picture tomorrow.