Monday, May 2, 2011

We are ALIVE...6 months Home Today

My First Birthday Party....I turned 4!

I have been EXTREMELY horrible with blogging. But today is a big moment...We have been home 6 months and it's been an amazing 6 months! Bryce is such a blessing that has filled our hearts with so much love, laughs and patience. Yes, patience. Bryce blossoms every day and some of those days are full of INDEPENDENCE and independence that a 4 year old is not quite ready to do.
A little boy from an orphanage with only 1 other child with DS (our sweet little Melanie to the Sader family) has learned sign language and uses it spontaneously now.
**Says "hi" "bye" "daddy".
**Pee and Poo-poo on toilet (still working on signing to let us know he has to go) but what an accomplishment.
** Has gained 2lbs and grown 2inches and 2 shoe sizes.
**Sweet to everyone he meets
**Lights up a restaurant,grocery store, anywhere, with his smile
** Learning to swim and LOVES the water
** Obsessed with closing doors....this child can not leave a room without every door closed.
** Started in Youth Athletes Program(part of Special Olympics for those 2-6yrs old)

He will start regular pre-school next month. We started him in January at a Charter school for mainly children with special needs, but that didn't turn out to be what we expected. He's not being challenged and this boy learns sooooo quickly so we want to give him a little more until he tells us no more.
He's had surgery for tubes in both ears, tonsils and adneoids removed; circumsion; we still have the dentist in 2 weeks and eye doctor next month. Let's see we've already had ER visit in January for falling into table at school and getting a nice gash under his eye, requiring Dermabond
(surgical glue)
Bryce will be in his first wedding in July and we just can't wait!! Chicago won't know what hit them:)
Well here are a few recent pictures of this AMAZING Ukrainian prince. We have never been so happy. Don't get me wrong, it's been challenging. Little hard to bring home a child that is a toddler and ready to go from the moment of waking; has gone through many different stages of developing but his smile, laugh, kisses and BIG hugs takes away all the challenging moments.
Mommy and Daddy are soooo in LOVE with you!!

Cool Dude!

First Christmas and Best Christmas EVER!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

One Month Home-12/2

Ok so I have been REALLY Bad with Blogging. It's been a world wind since coming home. First thing, Bryce is doing GREAT!!!
I sit here tonight pondering the thought that 9weeks ago, Bryce was just a picture we held onto and now he sits in the other room jamming to Itunes with his Daddy. Tom and I can't believe life without him. It's like he has been with us forever.
We've been busy running around to numerous doctors appointments.
Here are the updates, labwork all NORMAL (no thyroid issues, no parasites), weighs 31# and 35inch tall.
ENT: moderate hearing loss in both ears, has LOTS of fluid in ears, failed Sleep Study (yes, already had one of those done since being home), so we have follow up on Monday for scheduled surgery for tonsils,adenoids and tubes!

Cardio: well this was a little more disturbing. We were told that he had an ASD (atrial septal defect) that resolved on it's own. Well not quite like that. He still has the ASD, it's in a location that is not typical for ASD, but it luckily is only 1cm and not causing any deficits. Cardiologist is not sure if he had an AV Canal Defect that corrected itself or a very large VSD. He has developed a pouch in his ventricular septum. His mitral valve developed with a cleft in it. Again, another issue that is there but not causing any deficit. So bottom line, is no restrictions, nothing to worry about and we'll see her again next year for another complete ECHO. So much for a "quick" appointment for her blessing and never see her again! However, we knew this was a risk of adopting a child from another country.

ESE-Pre-K: we have this evaluation for school tomorrow. So wish us luck we get all the therapies we need.

Let me tell you the things we are just in love about Bryce

* The fact that he can put a smile on EVERYONE and I mean EVERYONE's face
*Hugs and kisses his 2 doggie siblings multiple times a day (big improvement after 5days home of screaming everytime he came near him)
* He will not eat unless he does it himself
* Understands commands we give him in English, after home only a week
* Wants to help you in anything you are doing; load and unload laundry
* Loves MUSIC!!!
* Traveled over 15hours and never heard a peep from him on the planes
* Loves to put his stethoscope on and pulls up his shirt so you can listen
* Gives the BEST hugs EVER!
* Loves wearing our shoes around the house
* Is so determined to learn and do it himself
* Bath time
* Looks so CUTE when in time-out; yes he gets timeout already
* Love the fact that finally we can call him OUR son!
*** Have I mentioned, how he makes EVERYONE he comes in contact with, SMILE!!! It's a beautiful thing!

We are just in such awe and MADLY in LOVE with this AMAZING gift!!
I will try to keep this blog updated. I will close with some pictures since being home!

Not Happy About His Sleep Study
Music Therapy at our local DS association
Dr. Bryce in the House
Meeting Scoobie at Universal Studios on DS Family Fun Day
Hanging with his BFF, Max (my godson)
Look, I am out of here, even if I just have a shirt and diaper on. I've got shoes on Mom!
Fun at the Zoo!!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Officially Home 1 week

We have been home for a week today and can't believe it! Bryce has been ABSOLUTELY amazing. Adjusting so well being with both of us. He is sleeping through the night, eating very well, LOVES the bath. Each day gets better and better with the dogs! That was his only difficult transition. The child even LOVES his car seat!
We thought the long haul and the misery in another country was going to put us over the edge, but it's all a distant memory now ( well maybe not sooo distant, LOL), He is just the BEST and MOST WONDERFUL and BLESSED thing that has happened to the both of us.
Unfortunately, we were so TIRED and overwhelmed getting home, NO ONE got airport pictures. But here are a few before leaving Ukraine and home pictures!


After---First Haircut

First Plane Ride and he was AWESOME!!

Rough night in Kiev, LOL!!!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Last Day in Ukraine

We have little mans important papers....VISA and the dreadful wait of Passport in HANDS! And we are off to the airport in T-7hours!!!
The last several days have been wonderful here, we've had a total of 6families in and out so we've all spent time sightseeing and having dinners together. Have really met and made some GREAT friends!!!
Here are some pictures of the last few days! You can see Bryce has had a GOOD time too! LOL----SEE you in the USA real soon!!!!

The Lorenz family(Adopted Leeza), Summers Family (Adopted Violet)

The New Family of 3!!!

Loving some Ukraine Ice Cream!!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Good news and Very Bad News!!!

Yesterday was the big Gotcha Day! Unfortunately the region Bryce was born in does not process their old passports, which take only one day to process. We were suppose to have it yesterday if that had happened, well after a 2hour drive and almost a hour of waiting....GUESS WHAT they can't do that passport now, so we are here waiting until Tuesday. Well we are PRAYING for Tuesday.
We went to the US embassy today and dropped off the needed paper work for his visa. Of course, they are closed tomorrow and also can't enter the information until they have the passport, so again we are waiting!!! I will say, it was neat to see a TON of people standing outside on line waiting to get in and we walked straight to the front and were the next ones to go inside, it was HYSTERICAL! And you know they were all ticked off!
Tonight we are meeting several other RR families that just got back to Kiev and are in the same boat as us, so it's dinner tonight at TGIF with the kids.
So speaking of kids, Bryce did GREAT yesterday considering he was in a car for over 5hours. Then gets to the apartment and was ready to ROCK! He was very overstimulated and had a hard time getting to sleep. He broke me in for being a mommy for the first time. We had elbows in the face, got kicked multiple times and slapped a few times. Poor thing was very restless, we're hoping for a better night tonight. We went to McDonalds today for lunch and he was sooooo cute! Sat and ate 4chix nuggets, however our child doesn't like the "fry" part, so I had to peel all the breading off.

He's taking in all the commotion of being in a BIG city! And is doing GREAT!
Tom and I are sooo in love!
We'll keep everyone posted as far as when we will be getting out of this country! It can't happen soon enough. An entire month tomorrow is just way too long and we are soooo homesick!

Looking so cute on his first day FREE!!!!!

Absolutely LOVED the bath last night!

Proud of his first car ride

Gotcha DAY!!!

Thought only in the movies...Cows were walking back from pasture at 5pm right in the middle of the road, must have been 50 of them.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Our Last Day of Visits

Well today is bitter sweet! It was the last day we will ever have to do orphanage visits! A very joyous day! It was also sad because we decided on our afternoon and very last visit to allow Bryce to play with the kids in the groupa. And they had a BLAST with Tom and I. That's where it gets sad.....It made me realize (well more than I already have) that these children may NEVER get the chance that Bryce has. I stood there at one point and said to Tom, I wish we could take them all home. To never have a Mommy or Daddy to dry their tears when they fall and hurt themselves, no family dinners, no opportunity to go to Disney or Seaworld or for that matter, just fly on a plane, no one to throw them in the air, like Tom did today with all 6 kids. Don't get me wrong, most of the caretakers are WONDERFUL with the kids, but you all know it's not the same. And it saddens me!!!

Tomorrow will be a day of running around getting papers and needed stuff to get Bryce out. We are hoping to have enough time for it to be Gotcha day but the way we were forewarned it doesn't look promising! But early Wednesday, he will be a free little boy and truly a Baumann and we'll head back to Kiev to get that paperwork needed to get HOME!
Well here are pictures of our bitter sweet day!

Bryce with his (and our) FAVORITE caretaker, Luda! She will be MISSED.

Bryce and his groupa in an outside "playhouse"

A mural painted on the wall of one of our inside play areas for the last 3weeks!

The Long Hallway to Bryce's Room!!!

Friday, October 22, 2010

It's Friday and Only a Few more days to go...

We have made it through the majority of our 10day wait. It will be 10days tomorrow, but because its the weekend, we have to wait until start of the week.
We can't wait, Bryce has been great but you can start to tell he gets bored after 30minutes with us. We do the same thing everyday. We try to bring different toys each visit but he is starting to notice "I've already know how this works".

He amazes us every day on what he learns! He already knows to sign "more" when we give him food and he almost has "all done" figured out. We are using mostly English to him and he recognizes those words now too. If you tell him "go to daddy", he runs to Tom and vice versa! Things he loves so far, he LOVES bags! He puts stuff in, takes it out and does this over and over again. And if someone else has a bag, he wants theirs. Yes, a little OCD...LOL :-). Loves yogurt and banana. Loves white grape juice, he's mastered the straw sippy cup. He is ticklish EVERYWHERE! Hearing his giggle is priceless!!!!
Loves COUNTRY music! We brought the laptop yesterday and played some Itunes. When country came on, he rocks out! Loves to dance with Mommy! He giggles and giggles!

Well that's enough of my admiration! I know everyday he is going to amaze us! So here are the pictures, I know that's what you all look for! LOL.
Miss everyone and say prayers that these next few days FLY by and we are home at the end of the week!

Rapper Bryce in the House!!! Poor overalls would not stay on him this day!