Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Family Fun Walk Fundraiser

Family Fun Walk Poster

Spirit of Adoption Alberta is excited to be planning our very first fundraiser. This year it will take place in Edmonton.

If you live in Alberta and would like to join us for a family walk and picnic, we would love to have you join us! There will be some great raffles prizes to help support Christian Adoption Services and 100% of all pledges will go towards financial grants by SOAA.

You can register on our Spirit of Adoption Alberta website.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Emotional Literacy

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Emotional Literacy is made up of ‘the ability to understand your emotions, the ability to listen to others and empathise with their emotions, and the ability to express emotions productively. To be emotionally literate is to be able to handle emotions in a way that improves your personal power and improves the quality of life around you. Emotional literacy improves relationships, creates loving possibilities between people, makes co-operative work possible, and facilitates the feeling of community.
*taken from Wikipedia

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Lilah went to see our Psychologist again.


It had been three months since the doctor had seen her.   She was very impressed with the improvements that Lilah has made in this time.


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Lilah now seems to understand who her immediate family is and that this is where she belongs.   When asked questions about what she had chosen to put into the sand table, Lilah explained that it was our house in Phoenix and that it was a very fun place to go.   She smiled when she said that in Phoenix, she could swim in the pool everyday.   She laughed when the doctor asked if mommy liked to go in the pool too... Lilah knows that I will only go in the pool if it is very, very hot outside.

She understood that our family is a unit that sticks together.   We travel together, but we are always together, because we are a family.   And she belongs here with us.   Forever.

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This is, of course, something that we need to continue to work on.   We need to continue our therapy at home in order to keep her anxiety down.   She is doing much better with her anxiety... but we do still have our moments. The Psychologist said that this typically takes about three years to achieve.

And she will likely always be a somewhat anxious child.   She just needs to learn how to recognize it and deal with it when it does arise.   

I am learning about myself throughout this process as well.   I am a fairly anxious person.   I know what I can handle and what I can't and when things spiral out of control, my heart rate rises and my anxiety goes up.   I was  thinking some deep breathing and yoga would've have been good for me this past week!

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The Psychologist had Lilah and I dance around a little bit together... Lilah could handle a little bit of eye contact with me and then she would look away.   She could handle dancing near me a little bit, and would then back away a bit.  I had told the doctor that we are not fully attached yet (this has a lot to do with me ... even after four years together).   I had explained that Lilah shows very little remorse for other peoples feelings and will say some very blunt and rude things to other kids, and then not understand why that would hurt their feelings.   She can hurt someone here at home, get in trouble for something, say that she is sorry -- because that is what is expected -- but there is no remorse and she will run off and play like nothing happened.

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By continuing our therapies (yoga, massage, deep breathing, exercise) and by spending more time one on one together, we should be able to change this in her as well.   But it again, will take a lot of time.

It is very frustrating trying to explain to someone that you are upset or that one of her siblings is upset and she doesn't get it.   It seems like an impossible thing to change.   But Lilah has improved by leaps and bounds and we pray that God will continue to heal her heart and the trauma that she has been though... we will continue to do our best for her.

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Thursday, May 23, 2013

Picking Dandelions

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Everyday, this little one picks me bouquets of dandelions.

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Today, we headed to the river valley to take some photos amongst the cherry trees and when we were done, Zoe ran around gathering the dandelions.

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It took my breath away watching her.

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She finds such joy in the little things.

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While my other kids are begging to go home... they are so bored... this one makes the most of every moment.

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As long as she doesn't see a bug of any kind, she is good!   Otherwise, you will find her running and screaming in sheer panic!

Is a dandelion a clever yellow flower that turns into a galaxy of silvery stars or a weed?
 ~A. A. Milne, Eeyore from Winnie the Pooh

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Sunday, May 19, 2013

The Graduation Gown

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The friends.   The girls all looked beautiful.   Every dress was lovely.

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The boyfriend.   He looked sharp too.

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Young woman, my daughter,
my joy and my heart,
You've reached the end
only to find a new start.

The world sees the young woman
with her charm and her smile,
but behind the woman,
I will always see the child.

-- anonymous

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Friday, May 17, 2013

Commencements

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It was a great night.   A long night.   But a great night.

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The kids were all so excited that this day was finally here and the girls looked amazing.   You should have seen some of the shoes!

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The speeches were very good.   And everyone had really great things to share about this amazing school and all their accomplishments.

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It took a long time to watch 428 kids walk across that stage, but worth it when they called Abby's name.

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Congratulations to the class of 2013!

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Thursday, May 16, 2013

Lilah is Six!

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“Though she be but little, she is fierce!" -- William Shakespeare



Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Another two wheeler

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Zoe has learned to ride a two wheeler.

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This was a bit of a challenge for her.   She does have some balance issues and she had to work a little bit harder!

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I actually went and bought the bike and brought it home with training wheels on it.   She needed some motivation.   Once something is there in front of her... she wants it!

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I knew she would want this pretty pink princess bike with yet... another baby seat!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Oh, the things they say!

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When I got into the car with some baking from the store...
Zoe:  Mama!   Whatcha got there?!

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After I told her to do something...
Zoe:  Why?  Cuz you're a smart, smart, smart, smmaaaarrrrrt cookie?!

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When I rested my feet on her tummy, while sitting on the sofa...
Zoe:  Seriously mom!   You are killing me!

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My kids never listen to me... When I explained to Zoe that I would like her to put her Easter treats in one spot, so they wouldn't get mixed up with the other kids, I asked her to repeat what I had said to her...
Zoe:  Blah.  Blah.  Blah.

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*they saw a jogger and thought they should run too!

Micah:  Mom, why are there leaves in the soup?

Micah:  I need to go kill some cows, so I can have some leather.   (Apparently, he was playing Minecraft).

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Lilah:  Mom, do bears eat fish without cooking them?   That is soooooo gross!   They are soggy and they eat the tails and eyeballs and everything!   Yuck!

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Zoe:  Mom, you are the queen!
Me:  Okay.
Zoe:  (curtsying) Now would you please do something with your hair!

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I tried to explain to Zoe that I am the mom and it is my job to teach her what is right and what is wrong.
Zoe:  You are not being nice to me!   You are teaching me wrong and I want to be the parent!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Riding a Two Wheeler

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When Lilah first came home, and for a very long time afterwards, she did not want to do anything for herself.   She wanted everything done for her and if she couldn't do something the first time, would try to give up.

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But we pushed her.   Because we knew that she could do many great things, if only she would learn to try, try and try again.

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I am proud to say, that she now will ALWAYS try, try and try again.   She will take a task and spend hours on it, until she has figured it out.   I had told the girls this weekend, that if they learned to ride Silas' two wheeler, that I would take them shopping to buy them their very own two wheeler.

Lilah spent about five hours on Saturday learning how to ride a two wheeler like a pro.   We had to help her a little at first, riding a bike with brakes can be challenging!   But she did it!

So on Sunday, we headed out and she picked out her very favourite bike, in her very favourite colour.   As soon as she saw the baby seat and mini helmet on the back, the bike was sold!

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Saturday, May 4, 2013

The Art Party

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*The invitations are from Print the Party.

On Friday, we had the little girls 6th birthday party at our house.   They invited a few of their favourite people and they painted their own masterpieces and some little ceramic animals.

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They had their pretty little cherry chip cake, with the traditional Chinese birthday candle.

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*I wish all three girls came out clear in this photo, their little friends face is priceless!

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