Tuesday, August 19, 2014

on the homefront

Things are crazy busy and crazy awesome here on the homefront. We brought a three year old home, started school, put our house on the market all within the span of three weeks. Ha. We roll with the crazy, and luckily our newest addition does too.

Some simple fun updates from the phone.

Nell is still working on her first English word, but girlfriend can communicate when she likes something. Whenever we give her something she wants to eat, we get a smile, a head nod, and this.... a thumbs up. This drives Brodie NUTS that she doesn't put her thumb up... but I think it's hysterical and hope she never out grows it. 

Toddler Adoption: another first... Her First Roo Cup. Kinda a big deal if you are a Brown. 

Brodie started baseball and I kinda DIE at the cuteness that is this kid. And um, he's kinda really good. 

ahh, these two, they have a crazy cool bond. I love it. 

a low grade fever means skipping dinner with friends and Pororo on the couch. Come to find out I think missy is finally cutting 2 year molars- joy. 

One of Nell's favorite things is "kaja!" which means Let's Go! One day all of us were getting ready except her... she comes walking in to my bathroom with just these crocs, the only shoes she could get on herself. She was ready... girlfriend does not want to be left. 

Chick-fil-a, we are slowly becoming a fan. 

She may not have much English, but she knows how to work a camera. Hold up your phone and you get this! 

Staying IN.YOUR.BED is a skill we are still working on. Sideways, but this counts! 

first time at church

We had been home just two weeks and decided it was time to go to church. We planned to just go to service, not Sunday School, and keep Nell with us. Since she is quiet as a mouse, we knew she would be ok hanging in big church with us.

My three amigos, dressed and ready for church. Nell is nailing the asian picture pose.

And she was a totally champ in service. The service was about the Sanctity of Life, a quite fitting first sermon I do believe.

And what's a Sunday at church, without lunch afterwards. Mexican where she could eat all the chips her little heart desired. Girlfriend loves her some chips and dip it!

Friday, August 8, 2014

#teamwill {the shirt}

Remember our little buddy, Will. You can read about the #teamwill movement here

Our buddy Will is about to begin his third round of chemo to kill the not cool cancer that decided to take an un-welcomed residence is his little 4 year old body. 

Will is giving the cancer the ole one two punch and is really putting up a fight. I knew cancer wouldn't stand a chance when it decided to pick on our strong oxen, Will. 

If you know me at all, you know I love a good tshirt. So when the news of Will's fight came out, I immediately told Julie, Will's momma, that a shirt would be in order. These got designed when I was in Korea and buried under the new mom of three-ness. But, as Will starts his third round of chemo, it's time to rally and show our love. 

So meet the #teamwill tshirt! 

They feature a saying very fitting of our fighter, Will- "where there's a Will, there's a way". This guy is making a way... just like I knew he would. He's running through cancer and not stopping- except those crazy side effects that have somewhat slowed and silenced him.... but don't worry, I see the light in his spunky eyes coming back. Will is back, cancer, ready for round three.

The shirts are being offered in both toddler, youth, and adult sizes. You can chose the grey or the blue, or both! They are a soft ring spun cotton. The shirts are $10 each with $3 shipping on your whole order. This will cover the cost of the shirts and any extra will be donated to lymphoma research so one day this mean ole cancer will just be something you read about in history books. Shirt orders will be taken until the 25th, when they will be ordered from the printer and shipped out to you! 

So, grab your shirt and support our little warrior! #teamwill

Toddler and Youth GREY


Toddler and Youth BLUE


Adult GREY


Adult BLUE


Wednesday, August 6, 2014

a {quick} update

I have about 2.2 million things I want to document for posterity sake... but durn, I don't have much time. Between the three toddlers, the fact my big girl job starts back Friday and all that I have to get ready for it, the fact our house is about to hit the market and just everyday LIFE... guess it's third child syndrome too! 

Nell is doing so remarkably well. Like for serious, best and easiest transition. We have some hurdles in the health and language department we will be looking to overcome, but for now we are just enjoying her being HOME! 

You miss out on a lot of life adopting a three year old, but this was a very important first... her first Sonic. 

She loves loves LOVES to go to TaeKwonDO and wait her brothers. The Master always talks to her in Korean, which she just eats up. She intently watches the boys and often does what they are doing on the side. As soon as they head off the mat, she hollars "OPPA!" and runs to them. 

We went to see Ms. Annie, our favorite hair cutter who happens to be a Korean Adoptee herself. She helped with a bang trim and some grow out perm advice.

When Nell saw the Pringles at Target she had a fit. She knew what they were and wanted them. So, of course, we got them! Girlfriend loves loves loves her some chips!

Shock of new food and new diet created a few less than stellar days surrounding a potty trained child who doesn't speak your language. We powered through and with the help of Mung Mung showing her some pointers I think we rounded a corner. 

My three. 

Nell's absolute favorite thing to help do is feed the dogs. She loves when it's time to feed Addie. 

We are working on loving the outside and sunshine. 

But we sure love our Mung Mung. And this is her "say cheese" face- smile and head cock- love it!

Our chip lover was double fisting at Moes!

Another fantastic toddler adoption first- swimming. She was happy and content to get just this far in the pool, but not an inch further

Daddy's work from home schedule means an early afternoon and a family trip to the pool. Missy was less than pleased with mommy's ideas of actually getting IN the water! 

Saturday, August 2, 2014

eating {or learning to eat}

We were told Nell wasn't much of an eater. And her weight and reports more than backed that up. We knew we had a long road of nutrition ahead of us, we needed some weight gain and for her to learn to eat. 

So momma was on a mission! 

Nell would happily and easily eat about 2-3 bites of her meal and then be "done". 

We tried to win her over with Sonic, but she didn't approve - or at least hasn't approved yet. 

Chicfila, also not a fan. 

But we kept working, and trying... and spending hours at the table for a meal. 

And sometimes with some pouting, and tears. But she slowly learned that she needed to eat and Momma was going to make sure of it. 

And was often rewarded with as many tomatoes as she wanted, within reason, straight out of the garden after dinner. 

There were some bumps in the road when little Missy decided she would just hold the food in her cheeks for hoooooouuuuuuuurrrrrs. 

She was more than pleased to show me her favorite thing in the store, which we bought, of course. 

Ever so slowly, progress was made! 

And she began to really and truly eat.... 

But would still glare at me on occasion, just to see if I really still meant business. 

I'm so so proud of our girl. Check it, first time being in the clean plate club! 

With a repeat performance. 
It's only been two weeks in, but she has made major huge incredible improvements in her eating. She even has the slightest tiniest little belly now! Keep it up little girl! Go, girl, grow! 

doctor day

One week home and it was time for her first check up here in the States. It's a basic once over, going over the entire medical chart with the doctor, basic blood panel, some poop samples... all the things internationally adopted kids get checked over for.

Nell was impressed with the fish tank while we waited.

But she was less than impressed with the doctor. HA!

It was confirmed we have a tiny tiny tiny girl. 11% for height, which is awesome, but not even on the chart for weight. Her weight was plotted down in the key of the chart. Bless. We know tiny at our house and getting her to eat and calories is the main priority now.

We also got our referral to the cardiologist for the heart issues and then a referral to the ENT because little sister failed BOTH of her hearing tests in both ears. I'm hoping this explains some of the complete lack of language.

And then the dreaded blood draw. She was super duper brave, but has veins the size of a strand of hair... so we were sent to the hospital to take the blood.
The blood draw at the hospital wasn't all rosey either. It took 4 nurses, one EMT, four sticks, three blown veins, two popsicles, and almost 2 hours and we hopefully got enough blood for the testing....

Thursday, July 31, 2014

nell day {in pictures}

One year, 10 months, and and 2 days.

670 days.

And the day was finally here….

Nell would finally be in my arms for good.

Bates’ foster mom found out when we would be there and stopped by with goodies for Bates. She is such an incredible woman and we love her so! I was glad to get to see her again!


And then it was time. Well past time, she was fashionable late….






Signing the last piece of paper. Transfer of Custody.


Heading down to clinic for one last check up.











Time to say our goodbyes as hearts began to break.





And facetime Daddy! We had her!!!


Without a single tear, my brave brave girl who was so prepared for us fell asleep in my arms for the first time.





Welcome home, my love, welcome home.