Sunday, September 21, 2014

We've known each other a whole month!

Our newest American has another week down, including three nights falling asleep in a pack-n-play in a green room while the orchestra played on and on. She loves the instruments, particularly (duh) the strings, and stares at each one as they warm up. It worked out for me to put her in bed at breaks, and like always she slept like a champ. It was fantastic to see all the orchestra folk and have so many of them come up to give our new girlie some love. I've been overwhelmed by the support they've shown us. 
A pillow that folds out into a blanket hand made by a fantastic friend in the orchestra! 
My parents, the kids and I all went swimming together on one of the days. The boys are great swimmers, thanks to community center classes from the age of 2. Primrose watched them dive for rings, swim laps, play with pool noodles and generally swim like fish. Pretty soon she was trying to dive and squirm out of my hands to do exactly what her brothers were doing. We’ll have to add lessons to her weekly obligations ASAP. 

Watermelon for the Dynamic Duo.
Planting plants and looking for bugs.
Yesterday, Isaac gave his sister his beloved pillow pet because she kept lay-hugging it and making high-pitched happy noises. Well, the fact that we bought him a stuffed turtle the size of Florida may have helped just a little to seal the deal. He has been quite generous with her, though. As the younger of her two older brothers, I suppose she has encroached more on his favorite things and status in the family. So far he seems not to mind at all. It probably helps that they are so similar in personality and both crave interaction all.the.time.

See? It is a seriously large stuffed turtle.
FangFang can almost say "turtle" now, though she often says fish in Chinese instead.
Isaac gives her rides on that thing on the hardwood floors.

I’ve come to the decision not to teach much this year. Between running our music academy and performing, I’ve achieved a balance in my life that it’s imperative I maintain. Without a few margins in place, I worry our homeschool, my running (nascent as it is), or my mental health will disappear screaming out the patio door, possibly with its hair on fire and wearing polka dot circus pants. I love teaching, but the weekly daytime commitment of it is just too much for the time being. 

Sock on hand antics! Whatever works!
We’ll have to wait and see whether any of the opportunities I’ve had will return when I’m ready to get back to them. It's kind of a bummer to have that hanging over my head. Sometimes I daydream about the idea of year-long maternity leave like the Scandinavians reportedly have. It wouldn’t apply in our situation, I suppose, since I haven’t been full time anywhere except with each of the kids in a long while. Thank God (really, truly) for my husband and whole family.

She's learned a lot in one month. Her language skills and skills in general seem through the roof to me. People ask us if we're sure she's only 20 months (we're sure). I can take no credit, so I just marvel right along side them. Check out how she says "tomato" and understands everything I say in my supremely annoying "mom voice" in this video!

One month into our lives as a family of five, I can say it's easier than I had anticipated. She sleeps well, she seems happy, we love her. It's a busy life with very few breaks, but it's working out. It was such a long wait, I think we each had time to be truly ready for her to take her place with us. Nothing is better than seeing her right where we wanted her all along. 

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