Tuesday, April 8, 2014

April Showers................

I thought this was a beautiful photo as I was driving home from the grocery store on Friday. The storm was rolling in and I asked Rebecca to quickly take a photo. After all the light was green and I was turning left at the light!

The past couple of weeks have been busy with the orthodontist, pediatrician, endocrinologist, eye doctor, shopping, and school that are a normal part of our lives. It has kept me from being a weekly blogger. 

We have been spinning our wheels trying to get a simple social security number for our daughter. It has been a horrible nightmare and we will not be able to file our taxes on time as a result of our government! We have been in contact with the State Department, Social Security Administration, and Immigration...........we have exhausted every avenue. Our letter today form USCIS stated that we should have an appointment letter in a minimum of 45 days! That will allow us to make an appointment for Selah to take her citizenship oath (in Pittsburgh) then they will issue her the coveted Certificate of Citizenship. After that we can proceed to our Social Security office to apply for her number. Maybe we can then file our taxes.
Jeremy likes to mess with the kids. He changes the refrigerator magnets every few days and they cannot figure out who is the math genius.
Mariah helped me clean up the toy room. Before she came along the train table belonged to Ben. I can guarantee you he did not decorate the table like this. So much for my foam stickers!
Jeremy and Kyle went to Pittsburgh on day this past week for his dad's surgery. As I was helping Selah with some handwriting I noticed Kyle's desk was occupied.
It is safe to say she did not leave his desk as neat as it was before she occupied that seat.
She just ransacks a room! This summer I plan a major overhaul of my school room!

Jeremy is in charge of all of Kyle's Biology disections this year. So far they have disected an earthworm and a crayfish. He also teaches Bible to the kids. It is all new to Selah so he has simplified his teaching this year. No curriculum, just from the heart. I love his heart!
It is so important for Jeremy to show the kids how we serve others. It is not all about us! Please pray that Selah begins to understand these concepts that make no sense to her.

Tonight at supper Mariah dropped her spoon. She smiled and picked up her fork. When I looked a few minutes later I did not see her fork. I asked her where it was and she just pointed. We all broke out in laughter!
She was headed to bed the other night and had her "eep" in her arms and her army bag over her shoulder. We do not ask!
On Saturday our kids were invited to a birthday party at the skating rink. We normally do not go skating. Ben's neurosurgeon told us that repeated trauma to his backside would be harmful to him. So we have only been roller skating a few times. Since there were no other parties and the rink was solely for this party, I called Jeremy and asked him to bring the other four kids.
That photo above is Selah, Rebecca, and their friend Leah. It was obvious to us that this was not Selah's first time skating. She did really well!

Ben was very unsure of himself and was cautious!
These boys were only a little over 6 pounds each at birth. Where has the time gone? They are, at last measurement,  5'6" and 5'9" tall.
Mariah did not want me to hold her arm. She wanted me to hold her hand but since our last incident with her Nursemaid's Elbow I insisted on holding her arm.
We had a great day! I need a haircut so I just threw my hair in a pony tail.
are excited to be getting close to the end of a difficult school year. Difficult only because of the many snow days with neighbor kids knocking on our door all day long asking the kids to come out and play. Difficult because I'm teaching a 14 year old whose first two native tongues are nothing close to English. Difficult because homeschooling is just plain tough!

Selah continues to adjust well but still struggles with much. I think she is learning our parenting style is consistent. We could not operate smoothly without consistency. 

I notice when we read something in history that is not so flattering about China her entire disposition changes. From what my sister shared, next year's history is pretty tough on the Cultural Revolution in China. I can imagine it is very difficult to hear most of this for the first time.

Selah also still struggles to trust us. It will take a lot more time, I know. She is a lovely girl who now smiles much more. She is still very guarded. 

We have been blessed to be in contact with one of the girls from Selah's first orphanage. From what little information she has shared with us, it was very small. Probably 20-30 children. We asked this friend if she had any photos of Selah from her past and this sweet girl posted 16 photos we have never seen before! We treasure every clue to her past. She also has no idea we have these photos.

She shared with us that Selah doesn't open up very easily. We feel a little better knowing it is not just us that she doesn't open up with. 

We also found out from Selah's one social worker in China that she was a very good student. In a school of 3,000 students she stood out! 

Selah shared with me that in her 6th grade class for one term her marks put her in the first position of all 800 students. But she quickly tells me that it was only that one term. And she insists she is not very smart. 

We tell her constantly how beautiful she is. She still says, "NO!"

I get hugs that are so endearing. She wraps her arms around me and just stands there and hugs me before bed. The past few weeks I have also been getting kisses. 

While shopping with Rebecca for groceries I received this message from her. The blue text is mine and the gray is Selah's.
She is such a sweet girl! Love her to pieces!!!!