Sunday, March 2, 2008

First Month Home

It is so hard to believe that one month ago today we introduced James and William to all our friends and family at the airport. In one way it feels like it was yesterday, and in another way it seems like it's been a long time. We are amazed and thankful to God for how well the boys have adapted to their new family. Not only do the boys have two parents that love them, but they also have four sisters that treasure them greatly. Caitlin, Chelsea, Corey & Claire have been such a huge blessing to the boys and to us. At 7:30 am when the boys wake up for the last time (after basically being up all night) the girls take them downstairs to feed them and play with them. All of this love and attention from the girls is rewarded with much excitement and smiles from James and Will. It is so sweet and encouraging to see how willing the girls are to share our attention with the boys.

The boys are both doing better in their car seats - they don't scream anymore. Bath time has also gotten much easier because they enjoy splashing and playing in the water. Having two babies at one time is much harder than we thought it would be, but it is getting a bit easier every day. God's grace is new every morning and we know that He will continue to give us what we need each day to get through these difficult days. We expect to look back on these first few months home and smile. We believe that any difficulties we go through now are going to be far outweighed by the joy that we are now experiencing and will have with James and William in the future. Even now, the smiles and laughs and fun times we have with them are well worth any disruptions of sleep or schedule.

They are 8 months old now and have grown so much in only a month of being home.


*is walking aound the coffee table

*now has two teeth on the bottom

*gets so excited when daddy comes home from work

*sleeps through the night with one small bottle at about 3am

*loves to be read to

*likes to eat all the cheerios off the kitchen floor

*has a real funny personality

*likes to blow raspberries

*wears 9-12 month clothes

*weighs 18 lbs

*waves bye bye


*can say dadada

*loves to play peek-a-boo

*loves to jump in his johnny jumper

*likes to play like he is shy but isn't

*smiles at everybody

*prefers table food over baby food

*wears 6-9 month clothes

*weighs 15 lbs

*wakes up 3-4 times a night

*attempting to crawl

* loves to be read to

Friday, February 8, 2008

One week home

It's hard to believe we have been home for a week. The jet lag has been harder than I had imagined. We get so tired at about 5:00 everynight, while the boys are ready to play. They have had a hard time sleeping but we were really encouraged last night. They both went to bed at 8:00pm and only woke up once for a bottle and then right back to sleep and then up at 6:30am. Hallelujah!!! It's amazing to watch the boys with the girls. They get so excited when one of them walks into the room. The girls are such a big help, too. They make bottles, feed them, play with them and try to get them to sleep. I have to remind them that I am the mommy and that I have to do these things so the boys will know who the mommy is. I am so thankful for how the girls have welcomed the boys into our family. Chelsea commented the other day that the boys already feel like her brothers. Praise the Lord! The biggest problem we are having right now is the car seats. William cannot stand the car seat. James does fine but when William starts to scream, it frightens James and then they are both screaming. It makes for a long car ride. Hopefully, they will get used to them soon because with 6 kids, we are in the car alot.
Thank you so much to everyone who have brought over meals, given gifts for the boys, called with words of encouragement or who have prayed for us. We can't wait until the boys are older and we can share with them how much they were wanted and loved. Not just by us but by everyone!!!!

Saturday, February 2, 2008

We Made It!

A beautiful sight! Our 3 girls who stayed home.
Such encouragement!
The flying is done!!

After 26 or so hours of travel we are home. It was a wonderful feeling pulling into the gate here in Louisville knowing that we were about to be reunited with our girls, our family and our friends. The overflow of Gods goodness and love that we've experienced through many of you and in so many other ways is amazing. We missed our girls so much and this such a sweet time of being together again. We were blown away by the encouragement we received at the airport. We are so thankful to be at a church and to have family that are so supportive of adoption. We're all exhausted as you can imagine, but in the best possible way. Thanks again for all your prayers, support and encouragement!

Friday, February 1, 2008

Last post from Vietnam!

Kenny & Martin delivered the boys visas this morning. We leave the hotel at 3:00pm and our first of four flights leaves at 7:00pm. We should be quite a sight for everyone at the airports...5 suitcases, 2 babies in bjorns on the front of us and backpacks on the back, 1 diaper bag and 2 camera bags. We are exhausted just thinking about it. William has a cold, so he has been very fussy today. Please pray that he will be content on the flights. Also, pray for me, Michele, because of am fearful of flying. Thank you to everyone at home who has supported us on this journey and who have taken care of our girls at home. It means so much to us. We are finishing up this part of the journey but are excited about the new journey we are about to start as a family of eight. May God receive all the glory and praise!!

See you Saturday Morning!!!

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Coming Home!

Our visa interviews was a piece of cake! The US Embassy rep was very nice. The interviews only took about 5 minutes. We also learned that because of the Lunar New Year, also called Tet, which is widely celebrated in Vietnam, we need to pick up the boys' visas early tomorrow! This is such a blessing because our flight tomorrow leaves at 7 pm and we will now have plenty of time to get to the airport in Hanoi. We can't wait to be home and share the boys with everyone. We are excited about them being folded into our families and our Clifton family! Our flight is scheduled to arrive in Louisville at 8:45am on Saturday. We can't wait to see all of you. Please continue to pray for us. The most pressing request that we have now is that the boys would be able to get some sleep and be content as possible on the planes. We've loved our time in Vietnam and have enjoyed the culture here. We are thankful to God for all of his blessings during our travels. We can't wait to see everyone.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Well, we went to the Cathay Pacific office today and confirmed our flight changes. We plan on leaving Hanoi on Friday night and arriving in Louisville on Saturday morning! We can't wait to get home. Vietnam is great and we've enjoyed our time, but it will be much easier to deal with two little babies in our own home versus a hotel room. We've had the boys now for 1 week and we praise God for all of the changes and growth we've already seen in James and William. Here are some of the positive changes we've experienced so far:

- James is no longer severely constipated.

- James is drinking formula now and loving it. For the first 4 or 5 days all he wanted was rice cereal, which probably contributed to his condition!

- James smiles, laughs and makes eye contact much more frequently now.

- James is now sitting up on his own for long periods of time. A week ago he could not sit up on his own at all! He seems to be getting stronger every day.

- William has grown very attached to his Mommy!

- William no longer wakes up scared and sad, but happy and smiley.

- William is content to sit and play by himself for awhile.

- William is eating well.

- William often smiles unprovoked.

- Both the boys seem very relaxed and happy now!