Wow! The kids have been home two months... I've got to say--- it does seem longer! These are recent photos; the bottom one features my sweet 94-year old grandma!
For all of you prospective adoptive families out there, BE ENCOURAGED! This update is nothing short of a miracle!
First, the good:
1. All kids are sleeping well--- and longer.
2. All kids have stopped throwing major fits. Any tantrums are very short-lived.
3. All kids are responding to correction and discipline. No hitting, biting, etc.
4. All kids have pretty much stopped the famous "Ethiopian Pout." I'm sure we'll see it again, but it is not a first response any more.
5. Two of the kids are eating a greater variety of foods. The youngest is the stubborn hold-out....
6. The in-house sibling fighting is at "normal" levels now.
7. All kids can now ride bicycles!
8. All kids are quite affectionate with us; again, the youngest struggles a bit more in this area.
9. All kids really enjoy doing chores around the house; they even do many chores without being asked!
10. Even my strong-willed Guatemalan Diva is learning to serve her sister... and her attitude is much improved!
Now, the "it's gonna take time" category:
1. Can we stop screaming all of the time?
2. Can we sit to read a book... ever?
3. Can we stop running through the house?
4. Can we flush the toilet? Please? And can we aim it in the potty as opposed to around the potty??
5. Can we stay quiet for just a few minutes during (________ )? (fill in the blank with anything we might consider important.)
6. Can we stay together in a public place?
7. Can we sit on a chair or on the sofa, as opposed to jumping on it or doing headstands on it?
8. Can we FOCUS on one thing at a time?
9. Can we stop taking things out of other people's rooms (i-Pods, money, etc.)
10. Can we stop adjusting the bath or shower water to hot? And can we stop jumping in the shower?
11. Can you look at me when I talk with you?
12. Can you stop destroying or breaking everything you touch?
Obviously, many of the above mentioned issues are not exclusive to internationally adopted children! I know adult men who can't aim it in the potty, but that's another post.
We do home school; that has been a significant challenge. This is what the new kids' morning looks like:
1. Family devotions (antsy, antsy, antsy... G. will sometimes pray for a moment) 10 minutes
2. Color workbook (20 minutes)
3. Review of colors and numbers 1-20 (5-10 minutes)
4. New letter of the day and workbook (10 minutes)
5. Puzzle building (10-30 minutes)
6. Califone Card Reading System (basic vocabulary) (5-10 minutes)
In between all the "sit downs" and sibling squabbles, I'd say they do get in a good 60-90 minutes of school per day. I think that's really quite good! They are very much on the beginning preschool level of work.
My other kids have been real troopers during the school day. They have all learned to "go with the flow" and change up their day, as necessary.
Adoption has changed EVERY aspect of our day and family life... for the better!
Now, how's that for a fantastic 2 month update???