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Coming Home
June 18, 2005
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January 6, 2006  |  January 14, 2006  February 18, 2006  March 16, 2006  April 19, 2006  June 22, 2006  |
July 30, 2006  |  October 11, 2006  |  December 26, 2006  |  March 17, 2007  |  May 27, 2007  |  December 24, 2007

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Isabelle continues marching toward her goal of capturing “Champion of Rapid Progression.”  She claps whenever we say, “yeah!”  She has learned to crawl well (so well we had to install a baby gate over the weekend) not only when laid on her stomach but also when she is in the sitting position.  She is an accomplished “signer” -- she can sign:  “Mama”, “more" and "no no.”  Right now we're working on "dog" and "bottle". She has also learned to pull herself up into a standing position (July 19th).  WOW; so many milestones in such little time.  It is great to see and experience as she rapidly develops her personality and physical prowess.  Still waiting for the talking but every once in a while she will distinctly say Mama.  Probably saying it to the light post but who cares it is still Mama.

On the sleeping and napping front our precious daughter has mastered the art of the all night sleep.  She normally indicates, in her own quiet way (yeah right – she squawks like a banshee), that she is tired and Stefanie carries her off to bed around 9 p.m. after we all serenade (OK shout from under a pile of boys that wanted to wrestle with Pops) her with “good night” and then she falls asleep right away.  She usually sleeps without a peep until 7:30 or 8 a.m.  Miss Isabelle also naps twice a day at an average of 1.5 hours per nap.  She usually is laid down at 11 a.m. and sleeps until 12:30 or 1 p.m. and then again at 4:30 or 5.  She is a true champ!

As far as eating goes she is adventurous and tries many different things once.  She will demonstrate her distaste for something by either acting as though she is choking or spitting it out.  Of course, there have been times where she did both and then continued to eat the offending food.  She eats different types of noodles, some baby foods (didn’t care for pears with chicken), zucchini, sweet potatoes, yogurt, different cereals, and, of course, ice cream.  She is still drinking formula but has experimented with water, soda, and milk.  She now recognizes the boys “clockie" cups (chocolate milk for those wondering) and attacks the boys with a fervor to get some.  She seems to be gaining weight and actually is getting some meat on her legs and rear end.  Her stomach really protrudes when she has eaten which even led Asher to ask, “Why is her back so flat but her belly looks like a hill?” (good thing he wasn’t asking Stefanie the same question!)

The boys have learned that she is still fragile but they are also learning that she won’t break.  They have begun to ‘roughhouse’ with her but as gently as they can – she doesn’t wrestle yet but that can’t be far behind.  She is very ticklish and the boys love the opportunity to tickle her.  Dalton seems particularly fascinated with her and loves to get in her face and talk to her – I suppose he thinks she can’t hear him or pay attention unless he is in her grill (face).  Asher loves his sister tremendously and is a source of great help to Stefanie.  He has learned to dress and undress her and takes every opportunity to help Stefanie with anything that has to do with Isabelle.  Our latest routine is for Isabelle to take a bath with the boys and she loves it.  She is fascinated with poured water and takes bath time to mean time to grab the water coming from the faucet or the water from the cups that are being poured toward her; hard to explain but a hoot to watch.  She is very good in the bath and loves to have a cup in her hands so she can chew on the edges.  She hasn’t learned to fear the water yet which can be good and bad.  Good because she is carefree but bad because if she isn’t careful she will lean forward, while chewing her cup, and start sucking down bath water.  She sputters and then it’s right back at it.  I’ll take her out of the tub in her pink poodle towel and with it wrapped around her she is a beauty the likes of the world has yet to see.

On the tough side of adopting a special needs child, Isabelle does still have a “very large” hole in her heart that will likely require surgery.  It is approximately 15 mm and has minimal edges so it is likely that she will require open heart surgery when she is 2 or 3 years old.  The lack of edges and size of the hole mean that the catheter patch is not a likely repair possibility for her.  The cardiologists at Cardinal Glennon Hospital in St. Louis are fantastic and they have been excellent about answering our questions and providing contact information just in case we have questions.  We continue praying for Isabelle’s heart and appreciate your prayers as well!  Her heart is enlarged to compensate for the ASD but that is to be expected according to the docs.  She is also now taking Digoxin twice a day (8 and 8) which helps make her heart contractions more effective.  Our daughter is amazing and she brightens every day.  She has made falling in love with her effortless for all of us!

Isabelle enjoys the tradition of "family fun night" (watching a movie on the pullout sofa)

 Having fun at the park

Wonder what she's thinking

Crawling and smiling

I can pull up now!

New family photo - we have five kids!

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