Tuesday, September 25, 2012

james: amazing things!

Man, oh man.  I can't keep up with the events of life on this here blog.  

I think of posts I'd like to write.  

One on the summer we had and it's conclusion.

One on school starting and how all that's going (the girls at home: great!...the boys in kindergarten: well, that's a post in and of itself).

One with photos from our vacation at the beach (yes, after the boys had started school.  Ugh.  We had planned it when we thought they were going to be homeschooled).

And, this one, on the enormous progress James is making!

Maybe I'll get to them.  One by one.  We'll see.  But, if not, I must get to this one!  Because you won't believe it.

Our sweet, determined, defying-the-odds, little boy is walking.

And he doesn't even have his prosthetic/orthotic for his leg yet!  Perhaps tomorrow morning.  He just stands up in the middle of the room and goes!

His appointments have not been fun.  Just take a gander.   

Poor baby.


He's being casted to have the molds made for the prosthetics.

The prosthetists don't hurt him.  They just press and bend and squeeze and tweak.  They come in and out of the room over and over again.  They come in the room: James loses it.  

They leave the room: he's happy.  

They come back: he loses it.  

And, occasionally, he's agreeable.

This is a good look at the prosthetic/orthotic for his leg.  Oh how I wonder if he'll wear this thing.  
He does not like it!

Notice the shoe under his right foot?  The foot in the shoe is a prosthetic foot that's attached under the leg brace's foot support.  It will give him the support he needs in his ankle and knee and it will give him the 2" he needs on his right leg.  Very cool.  

Photo from behind.

Measuring the lengths.

Not happy again.

Not quite there.  Still a little too long.

Just need a half an inch less on the right.

Pray that he'll let me put this thing on his leg.  He's very adverse to it.

Also, he did get his prosthetic arm for his right side last week and has been such a sweet trooper about wearing it.  He protests and complains (with a little tears), but I can easily start talking about him watching Elmo when we're done and he perks right up and is over the arm issue.  And then he wears it all day without complaint!  That's awesome.

I know James is on his way to amazing things.  Our dream is to see him run.  One day!

I so need to get some video of him walking and I'll get some shots of him with his prosthetic arm on too.  

On Sunday at church, James walked by himself into his classroom.  It was so sweet.  The director of our children's ministry was so moved.  We all are!

Go, Jimmy Jam, go!  

Sunday, September 16, 2012

back to the land of the living

We slipped away.

For a long overdue (in other words, waiting-patiently-all-summer!) week at the beach.

Of course, I have photos to share.

But not as many as I'd like.

I have sweet stories to share.

But not as many as I'd like.

I have treasured moments, too.

But not quite as many as I'd like.

Last week at the beach was...



JD and I can't entirely put our fingers on it.  Perhaps our expectations were too high?  Perhaps we were looking forward to it too much?  Who knows.

We had a nice time, for sure.

We thoroughly enjoyed our time with our parents and dear friends, but our kids?  Umm...I'm gonna be honest...


The bickering and arguing and screaming at each other is at an all-time high.  Even James is in on the action!  Screaming so loud when he thinks he's talking that our ears literally ring for minutes afterwards.  Or how 'bout just the non-stop talking in and of itself?!

Don't get me wrong, we had a nice time.  But we didn't come back rejuvenated or particularly refreshed.  We felt...hmmm...tired?  Odd.

But I guess parenting can be that way sometimes.

Thank You, God, for the beauty of the ocean and sunsets and breezes and sunrises to offset our ugly humanness that causes us to lose sight of You.

Because You're too beautiful to lose sight of!  

Thursday, September 6, 2012

whoops! i forgot!

I keep forgetting to mention that results of the Real Cute Kids Contest!

Sorry about that!

First of all, thank you to everyone who voted for James.  It was such fun!

Here are the results!

James was first runner-up in his age group (0 to 2 years)!  Isn't that so cute?

The funnier thing is that I couldn't understand why they even announced who the first runners-up are until I just got on the website to copy the link and realized as a runner-up we won a photo session at Real Life Studios!  Ha!

Would help to read the fine print, I suppose!

Anyway, what fun!

No free trip to Great Wolf for us, but I'm sure if we reeeally want to make it a priority, we'll probably go!

Thanks again!  Love y'all!

james: (final post)

This is the video that we just about wore out.  

Our sweet boy.

In his homeland.

But not yet home.  

Just look at his eyes.  His curiosity.  His uncertainty.

I believe this was the first video we ever saw of James.  And this is the video that I showed Dr. Lee when he said 'he has good concentration.'  :)

Here's another. 

Of course for many months, we were just glued to James in this video, but now I find my eyes traveling to the other children.  My heart breaks for them that they may still be in that very room as I type. Oye.  

And the sweetness of them.  

What are their stories?  

Why are they there?

Adoption is something that stirs up such intense emotion sometimes.  You want to save them all.  But know that you can't.  But I do know that our one, the one napping peacefully this very minute, is worthy of being home.  And yet so are the precious children in these videos.  

Why do some come home and some don't?  Because the supply doesn't meet the demand.  It's heartbreaking, y'all.

Here are two other videos.  These were sent to us just one month before we left to get him.  He looks like a baby.  It's crazy to me how much he's grown and how much stronger he is now!  

This one I played over and over and over again.  Probably for obvious reasons.  ;)

And this one...my heart!  I can see that little twinkle in his eye that I see now everyday!  He was clearly in the presence of a much-loved caregiver.

Remember these Gotcha Day photos?  Wow.  And we thought he was doing so well!  Ahhh.

I don't need to post current photos and video of James for you to see the transformation!  You see it on here all the time. 

He is changed.

And not by us.

He is changed by the love of a Heavenly Father who loves him more than words can express.  

He is changed by the grace of God.  

He is simply changed.

We are changed.


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