Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year

Well, the family has been all here for 2 weeks now, and we are settling into somewhat of a routine, which is comforting for everyone! Lots of medical appointments have been accomplished (including one trip to the ER when Deyan had a seizure on Christmas day...he is ok, and we are going to continue to watch for any additional seizure activity. If he has any more, we will visit a neurologist), and many more have been made for January into February (and March for Opthamology)
The weather has been mild off an on, allowing for some time to be outside for a while at least. Martin LOVES to be outside. Doesn't matter if it is cold or not, he likes outside. I know when Jacob first came home, he LOVED to be outside, even in the rain. I think it is just feeling these things after having never been experiencing anything like this. I don't do well in the cold, but the boys sure do love it!
We brought the porch swing frame into the basement and hung a toddler swing from it for indoor swinging time. We did this for 2 years with Jacob. It took him a month or more to finally feel comfortable sitting in the swing when it was hanging from the frame. He would sit in it on the floor, and even while I was holding it up (coul;dn't do that too long) but not on the frame. We figure he had been placed in it and left for a long period of time and didn't trust he could get down. So we put him in and took him out again, over and over, and eventually, he got to liking it.
Well, this time, Deyan LOVES the swing, and will swing as long as someone will push him. Martin will not even LOOK at the swing! He is such a scared, timid little boy. Right now, we are working on just having him look at the swing, and maybe push it empty.
I have an IKEA swing to hang in the basement from the ceiling, and the special bolts to hang it, but have not gotten anyone to do it yet. It is not in Jim's area of expertise, so we must contract this out. Jacob will love it when we get it hung.  ANd I know once Martin is over his fear, he will also love to swing.
We are getting a bedtime routine that seems to be working. Deyan falls asleep easily, in his crib, with no crying. Martin fights it tooth and nail. I cannot just leave him in the crib, as he will hit and scratch himself, so I am sitting with him (after both get some nighttimes rocking/snuggle time) until he falls asleep. He is not happy with the program at all, but will get used to it. Both sleep through the night, awakening anywhere from 5 to 7 am.
As the days inch by, Martin is showing his temper more and more. I'm glad he has one, as it is probably the only thing that has kept him going. He otherwise is so afraid of things. We have made their "world" pretty small by keeping in the family room mostly, and Martin wants to be out and about much more. We take them on short trips (went to get shoes for Martin, Deyan and Jacob the other day. Went to Stride Rite. I must say...the sales rep was SOOOO helpful. We got in and out, with 3 pairs of shoes, in less than 15 minutes, and a promise that during their spring buy one get one 1/2 off sale, if we call ahead, someone will come in before the store opens or stay after closing time, to accommodate us with no crowds. How nice is that??)  and practice walking up and down the steps for Martin, swing for Deyan, occasional outside for all, but other than that, we are in the family room, playing or chilling. 
Oops gotta cut this short. Martin is up from his nap. More hopefully soon, and I will ask Jim to help me with photos.
in the meantime, visit his blog for pictures and videos


Friday, December 23, 2011

At Home Update...Merry Christmas

I've been totally neglectful of blogging, but with good reason....we are B.U.S.Y with the kiddos in our home now.
Homecoming was awesome! They were on the last flight in, and were the last ones through security, so we had a very quiet reunion. It was heavenly. I missed my family so much, and to hold my little boys once more, well, it was just perfect.

Each day shows us more and more what these guys are all about. Deyan has cornered the market on cute/cuddly and we are all smitten. He still scoots to propel himself, but can now climb up on the couch, chair and ottoman but cannot yet (safely) get down independently! He prefers to sit atop the furniture...probably feels safer there with all of the hubbub going on. He is a very small guy, weighing in at just under 23 lbs, wearing 12-18 month clothing, but being almost 6 years old! His belly is quite impressive....very large. We have already had our first check up at the international adoption clinic, cardiology, and GI for Deyan. GI noted that he has very lax muscles in his belly and they think much of the enlargement is from air...he swallows A LOT of air. They were concerned with his size, and want us to feed him 5 meals (full meals, no "snacks") PLUS 4 cans of pediasure a day! He does eat, and we have rarely seen him indicate that he is full, but his belly gets SO big, I just cannot imagine getting this much food into him in one setting. We shall see.
He is a great sleeper at night, and all around, a joy! He makes me smile.

Christoper Martin (STILL are arguing over his name. I like the name Martin, and Jim has taken to calling him "Marty Moose", but then Joey and Matt both correct us saying "Christoper". More like "Chrit-o-per". ) He is such a scared, timid little boy. New things are not cool according to him, and boy, his life has just sprouted a TON of new things. We are trying to keep it simple. I have noticed that although he is self abusive at times (when stressed or bored) he is easily redirected, AND those times are decreasing daily. Many times today he was poised to smack himself in the head, but found something else to do!  One great thing about his timidity is the fact that he looks to us to reassure him. He wants to be carried when out and about (we are not going out much, but a quick trip to the grocery store, and today, we went to IKEA to get him a crib) and really looks to us to provide that stability. He loves to "do laundry"...folding whatever clothing items he can find...mostly washcloths.

Overall, the transition with these two is going very well, and we could not be happier with them.

I must publicly thank Marie for going with Jim and James to pick these treasures up, and continues to lend invaluable support at home. And Emily, who is finding lots of time between school and work to help out.  And James, and Joey, who have been playing with, getting supplies for, and overall just being here with us during this transition time. Julie for coming over to visit and bringing Allie to see her new uncles, and helping out where she can. I can't wait for Catie to be able to make it over to meet her new brothers! We tried a couple of times but could not coordinate schedules...well, the boys' schedule keeps changing nap times!

Merry Christmas to all!


Friday, December 16, 2011

Last post from Bulgaria!!

Even though the kids went to bed early they slept in until just about 7!  Typical breakfast routine; Martin sat in the bath tub this morning, too!  YAY! He needed to be prompted in Bulgarian to sit down then needed physical help but did not resist at all.  I poured water in front of him, not too high and kept it in the same spot each time.  One time he got brave and put his hand under the water but other than that his hands stayed glued to the sides of the tub.  Deyan was, of course, jealous/upset/snotty about Martin being in the tub and me playing with him.  He was told he has to share the tub and his “rie rie” and he actually pouted a bit!  Little stinker.
After some packing done by papa we packed up the kids and walked to a traditional Bulgarian restaurant.  Martin was overwhelmed and scared so dad took him back to the hotel while James and I stayed with Deyan.  Luckily we had 2 Humana yogurt things in the diaper bag because it took close to 40 mins to get our food and the woman misunderstood that we wanted a baked potato with cheese and we got fried potatoes.  James and I enjoyed them but once our food came, the most delish fire roasted pork on a spit I’ve ever had!!!!, I was able to communicate that we wanted a baked potato with cheese, but instead of cheese we got butter.  That worked well for Deyan, though.  He ate the equivalent of 1 medium sized potato plus 2 rich in nutrient yogurts.  He was a bit squirmy throughout but  nothing that couldn’t be handled with some one on one time.   Our meal took longer than we planned and dad came in right as the woman was boxing up the left overs.  He had gotten a cab tour set up through the hotel.
This was the best tour I’ve ever done in a foreign country.  Our driver, Dmitri, is Russian by blood, grew up in Bulgaria and spoke FANTASTIC English!  He’s married and wants to have children and was sooooooooo good with both boys.  He would turn around and tickle them and talk to them, he drove us around for close to 3 hours showing us all the sights and telling us about the history behind all of it.  He also took us to a church that was built in the 10th century.  While on our drive up to the church we stopped at Starbucks, which was nice but very different from the ones in the States.  Luckily the barista spoke English and was able to tell me what they did and didn’t do.  It took close to 10 mins just for a drip coffee and an iced green tea.  Deyan fell asleep on my lap while playing with my hands.  He put my hands over his in a praying position and then fell asleep on my lap.  I LOVED it.  Plus Martin had his hand on mine and it was so sweet.  I asked James to take a picture so we’ll see how it turned out! 
After we got back to the hotel we did some more packing and played with the boys.  Deyan loves to stand on the bed and have your thumbs to stand up, comes in for a hug then puts both of his hands up and falls backwards.  I always have my hands on his back or sides as he’s going down, just in case, but he laughs and LOVES it.  So MAMA BE WARNED..HE WILL TRY THAT AT HOME!!!  When I ask for a kiss in Bulgarian he will sometimes give me his face, sometimes pucker up and sometimes pull away.  Sometimes he just sits there and I take a kiss from him. J  He’s spontaneously come up and put his mouth and lips on me 2 times tonight and I tell him in Bulgarian “thank you for the kiss!” 
I am so glad that I know what Bulgarian I do know.  I will keep studying the phrases because I know they will come in handy at home.  They respond well when some things are in Bulgarian. 
I went down to get the passports and visas with Martin while James had Deyan in the tub and papa was at the Billa. (grocery store) Martin, the man with the passports and such, went right over to baby Martin and picked him up, talked to him and joked with me that the passports were his.  I joked back and said they were mine and that baby Martin was mine; he laughed and we shared a moment with baby Martin.  Then the hotel did something so sweet.  The receptionist came from behind the counter and gave me a bag of goodies for the boys.  She told me that the Mickey Mouse stuffed animal was specially for Martin and that Winnie the Pooh was for Deyan.  There was also a bag for each boy of chocolates.  Then when I got back up to the room, another person brought up a plate of dessert pastries for us, as a congrats J  I don’t know if this is typical but it was very sweet and much much appreciated! 
After another quiet evening and bath the boys were ready for bed; I went down to the restaurant and here I sit, typing and eating my last dinner..Shopska sala and spick Hungarian goulash and beer.  We are up at 4:30am tomorrow for a LONG travel day.  I am very excited to be home and see my husband and dog as well as Jake, Joey, Matt, Emily, Julie and baby Allie. 
Prost to a safe, easy, calm and stress free near 18 hours of travel!
Deuces everyone J

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Full day of running around..with AMAZINGLY behaved children!

Woke up with everyone at around 7:50am, which was fantastic except we had to leave at 9:00am for the doctor!  Sent James down to  get his breakfast and he brought it up to the room so he could help watch the boys while I ran downstairs to make the boy’s pouppri/mish mash.  Deyan ate more this morning than he has every other morning, other than Saturday morning when he at like 5 pieces of coffee cake and about ½ cup of milk to make it mushy!  While he ate more than usual he did not eat a lot at all; maybe 8 bites.  MAYBE.  Martin, however, ate really really well!  Dad showered while I changed boys, got them dressed, finished feeding and packed up the boys.  I left my jacket and just took my scarf, an afgan from India; a gift from a friend.  I get so hot so easily and HATE being sweaty.  I’m glad that I didn’t wear my coat.  It was FLIPPING HOT in that stupid building! 
Okay, going to get political for just a sec, mom feel free to delete this part from the blog if you want to because it is my own personal view and rant…This morning was the perfect example of why Obamacare is stupid.  It was 1 building with all the doctors on different levels.  It was so impersonal. (I realize we are never going to see the doctors again, and that we are just here for an okay to enter the States but still)  The building had just about every type of doctor and was full of people at 9:20am.  Hot, over crowded building full of people with who knows what’s wrong with them or why they’re there..not being able to pick my doctor or an appointment time is NOT okay.  And apparently this was a PRIVATE clinic! Screw a “for real” public one.  And SCREW OBAMACARE. There, I’m done J And see, mama, I put it into a paragraph all its own so you can just highlight and delete if you want J 
One level down from the peds was the obgyn clinic.  I had Deyan down there while he practiced walking.  He got lots of loving looks and a woman even played ball with him for close to 5 mins.  She talked to him in Bulgarian, I could understand some of it.  She was telling him he’s handsome/beautiful, that he’s good and sweet.  She had tears in her eyes when I told her that he’s being adopted and going back to the States.  She spoke English very well and we talked for a bit.   Eye doctor, did not get their eyes dilated.  I asked if we had to and we didn’ sense in ruining their vision for a few hours and making things uncomfortable especially when they are going to have another car ride later.  Next was the what I’m assuming was the ENT, but she just looked in their ears and sent us on our way.  I know at least Deyan has an ear infection, probably Christopher, too, because I can see some drainage in his ear.  I am really mad that they didn’t say anything.  I wasn’t expecting a prescription or anything but just a “hey, he is probably in pain, try some Tylenol” is the least I expected.  The pediatrician was a very lovely gentleman.  After waiting for close to 1 hour to see him we went into his office.  He had propped a window open by using a toy block from the waiting area (which I am completely okay with) and I could see an immediate difference in both boys from even just 30 seconds in a cooler room.  Before we went in I was pacing, playing and walking with Deyan while dad walked stairs with Christopher/Martin/Marty. 
Deyan apparently had an ultrasound in August and only has 1 kidney.  From what I remember, neither of his testicles have descended either.  I’m not too worried about his kidney right now; I change his DRENCHED diapers more than Martin/Christopher/Marty.  Every morning he wakes up soaked through his diaper, onsie and footie jammies and on to his sheet.  I change him RIGHT before he goes to bed, too.  Martin/Christopher/Marty is fine, according to his “check up.”  Nobody even looked at his face from his SIB.  He’s been getting Neosporin with pain relief on it and we’ve been really good about his hands.  He gets in a few baps every once in a while but you can tell with the way he hits himself that he has to go at it for a while to create that kind of damage. 
Back to the hotel for the boy’s quick lunch, both ate well,  and caught a cab to the US Embassy.  Martin LOVES taxi rides!  He sits in the middle seat in the back so he can see out the front and will sit there with his hands on his lap and just watch; makes an occasional clicking and popping sound but very very well behaved!  Deyan saw that Martin was sitting in a seat so he wanted to sit alone, too.  After about 3 mins sitting in front of my legs that was not good enough and he wanted to sit alone next to Martin.  He sat there very nicely!!!  We met Dani at the Embassy.  After security with the boys, which was a breeze compared to any other security I’ve done (and I still felt very very safe…they just were fantastic and understood the needs of the kids and were so GREAT.) We were the first called to see the whoever we had to see to be able to come home. 
While waiting I was talking to a woman who was adopting a 5 year old boy.  The boy, she said, was classified as moderately mentally retarded.  The boy spoke clearly, though loudly, made eye contact, walked, ate well and communicated with everyone around him. The only difference between him and a typical kid that I could tell was his voice was very very very very loud.  He LOVED Deyan; wanted to give him some of his drink and share his cookies.  It was so sad to tell him that Deyan doesn’t chew and drink well at all.  He said that he would give him a drink and a banana tomorrow. J 
After 5 mins in the interview room, and the man telling us it was nice to talk to US citizen that aren’t criminals, we were on our way with the paper work in hand! Caught a cab back to the hotel and played with the boys while papa got a nice break and dinner.  I showed Martin how to pour coins from a cup to a bowl and other things like that, and he LOVED it.  HE did it with me for about 3 mins before Deyan scooted over and wanted all of my attention.  Martin was okay with James playing with him so I snuggled with Deyan. 
I am in the hotel restaurant right now having dinner, at close to 9pm, and apparently both boys went to sleep about 40 mins ago!!!!!  Deyan was POOPED, plus he got a melatonin and a Triaminic cough strip for his cold.  He was out in about 5 mins and Martin/Christopher/Marty followed suit.  James came down and helped me finish my dinner, pork medallions wrapped in bacon, broccoli (maybe the best tasting broccoli of my life) and tater tots made with for real mashed potatoes, not shredded taties.  Hopefully bed time is early tonight; I’m tired and I’m guessing that it will be an early morning because of such an easy going, early night!
Tomorrow is our last day here and dad and I were talking about doing a cab tour of the city; hopefully I can get out and take some pictures at some places.  Plus there is a Starbucks out there.  I’ve had really good coffee here at the hotel but a nice, comfort coffee (Christmas blend!!!) will be nice.  I also have gifts to get, and the Christmas-mart is still open.  Both boys like the car and both enjoy being out in the fresh air so hopefully we can get out!  There is also a traditional Buglarian restaurant down the street, as well as Happy Grill.  I vote traditional, we’re hoping the boys will be good out to eat..i guess we will find out!  Well, I am off to the room, dad says Deyan is sleep singing (I LOVE IT) so we have to be super quiet…I am going to make photo books and stuff tonight before my coupons expire ..then hopefully an early bed time!  

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Where have all of the comments gone?

Mary here....
I don't know where the comments that folks are leaving are going. I have reports that people are leaving comments. I have my blog set to moderate comments, and they should come in an email to me. I've gotten 2, both of which I have published.  There are none in my "un-moderated" comment section, and none in my spam section.  Anyone have any suggestions? Email me, because apparently if you leave a comment, it won't get to me!


2 day update (the power is off..yay);

Yesterday was a full day of no appointments, just chilling in the hotel with the 2 boys.  Breakfast is a mix we are calling poupourri –just because that is how it looks like it would be pronounced in English.  It is a mix of (yay power is back on!!) bread, green tea, sugar, cheese and butter. I know, iew, right?  I took down the paper schedule that Deyan’s orphanage gave to us; my mom said that the schedule is a country wide outline that each orphanage is supposed to follow.  So, assuming each director did their job, each boy should be pretty close to the same as far as schedule expectations and such.  I think Deyan is just not a big breakfast eating type of guy.  He takes a good 20-30 mins to wake up completely.  During this time he babbles to himself and gently tickles and rubs his arms and belly, especially around his belly button.  I help him out a bit but he mostly just wants to sit on my lap and do it himself.  The kindly man who works what seems to be everywhere in the hotel made the mish mash and brought it up to the room with James.  Martin LOVED it.  The cheese is as close to Feta as I can describe; it’s very crumbly, solid white and thick.  Deyan didn’t eat any of it but ate a yogurt at around 9:30 or 10.  He’s been rubbing his ears a lot and after about 30 mins of a dose of Tylenol he stops so I’m guessing it’s an earache.  He’s got a cold; green snotty nose, congested and phelmy cough so earache fits the shoe quiet well.  Snacks are a yogurt, half a banana and sometimes 8 little vanilla wafer like crackers, or no cookies.  Martin loves walking up and down the stairs; he more likes being carried but he can walk and he will.  I give in and carry sometimes but tell him in Bulgarian to say “up”.  *FAMILY: ANOTHER THING TO LEARN TO SAY IS “say” IN BULGARIAN* that is helpful.  After only a few tries he successfully says “uhh” and puts his arms up to us when he wants up.  He can vocalize and has the ability to talk so we are requesting an “uhhh” sound (at minimum) for any up motion coming from us.  He can be stubborn, but what kid isn’t at times?  He definitely prefers James and my dad; dad more than James and James more than me.  I’m the last resort, pretty much, but that’s okay because he needs to get really attached and familiar with James and dad.  He picks me last usually because I am pretty demanding of vocalizations.  Call me “Mrs. Meanie”.  Martin raged again, but it wasn’t with as much force and intensity as the first night.  Deyan kept putting his arms and hands out to me to be picked up; how can I turn down a kid who spent 6 years being ignored and left alone to cry for who knows how long?!  I picked him up every time; first I kissed him and told him “I love you” in Bulgarian.  He would put his head on my shoulder, give me his mouth or cheek to kiss and put his arms do you say no?!  Earlier in the day we went out for a walk..Martin was with my dad in his arms and I was pushing Deyan..Martin was overwhelmed with all the vehicles (he LOVES watching them from the window) so dad and James took him back to the room..within 3 mins of them being gone Deyan fell asleep in the stroller.  I walked back to the hotel and sat in the lobby with him sleeping in the stroller for about 40 mins..about an hour nap.  At about 20 to midnight my dad woke up and suggested a warm bath.  I went to run the water and when I came back out he said to let him be; to watch him but that he is looking like he’ll fall asleep.  Luckily, around midnight he did.  I tried putting him in the stroller again and walking the halls but apparently people can smoke in the hallways.  I am out of network with my insurance and I cannot go to the hospital here so we stayed in the hotel room. It was 1am before I got to bed; I showered, did dishes, washed clothes and hung them, folded dry clothes and collected my sanity. 
Last one asleep but I got to doze in and out for about 10 mins, which was nice.  I made mish mash this time and again Deyan didn’t want breakfast but ate a pudding for snack and chowed down on lunch, afternoon snack and dinner.  Dad made a few trips to the store, which was a nice break for him.  I walked 8 flights of stairs with Martin I’m sure what had to be close to 10 times today.  Up and down, up and down.  He loved riding the stroller…he wore gloves and didn’t throw them; just watched all the cars, trucks, busses and trollies go past.  Deyan slept for about an hour with dad in the room while James and I had Martin out for a walk.  (lucky dad!) At lunch we gave Martin a Dramamine, sometimes it can hype kids up.  He sat nicely for the stroller and a few hours after; but he’s getting Deyan’s cold and feels crummy.  He’s given himself a bruise where is old open wound was.  I think that area is still sensitive and doesn’t take a lot to bruise…just 1 hit in the right way.  James played with Deyan while I walked with Martin up and down the stairs some more.  Every step we took I exaggerated my steps and said, “dobre, bravo Martin!” Then with the next step translated it to English, “Good, good job Martin!” Gotta start working on that English little guys!  Deyan does not like to share!  Every toy that Martin gets, Deyan wants to take.  Luckily Martin doesn’t mind Deyan taking it (does he notice he’s younger? Fear of reprimand? Doesn’t give 2 monkies butts about the toy??) and Deyan will slowly move all the toys into “his section” of the room; which is pretty much wherever Martin is not.  Because Deyan does not walk he needs to move things in shifts..1 toy at a time to different “pit stops” while he brings the rest of the toys..then keeps going.  Pretty fun to watch but need to now study my cheat sheet for “share with your brother” sayings.  *FAMILY..STUDY!!!*  Martin was fading fast in the evening; we managed to sneak in some Tylenol; hi s scabs were hurting him and he was uncomfortable.  He ate 2 pudding cups, with Tylenol and melatonin, and got rubbed down with night time lotion.  I took Deyan in for a bath but when I brought him in to his crib, Martin woke up full force.  After the power went off and came back on I changed Martin.  Come to find out, I think he has worms.  Poor baby has been getting Mirlax, or something like it, the past few days and has only had 1 good sized BM.  Mom and Em agree it is probably worms; but there is nothing we can do until he gets here except feed him and love him.  He’s getting a lot of both!  It is now almost 1 am and Martin is still awake; the Dramamine had adverse side effects afterwards…we tried it now so we’d know these things.  Dad asked me to take a turn with him for a bit; I got him to sleep after a bit but then he woke back up when I tried to put him in his crib.  Dad got him laying down while I was just skyping with my husband, Sean, and we had all the lights out and I bumped into a bottle that clanked into another bottle.  Nothing fell and broke but 1 clank was all it took to wake him back up. I’M SORRY PAPA!!  So it looks like I’ll be waiting out the storm before I go to sleep…I’m with you, pop!!! Tomorrow we meet with the doc in the morning; hopefuilly he can look in ears and stuff and prescribe meds so the airplane ride doesn’t make their heads want to explode.  We also have the Embassy meeting at 1:30pm.  I’m still hoping to get to see some of the city before we leave..tomorrow may be the last day!! Here’s hoping!!! 
Catch you all on the flip side J  

Monday, December 12, 2011


Jim and Marie had quite the day with the boys today.
Perhaps "Martin" would do better if we called him by his new first name "Christopher".

Just sayin'.....

(Can you guess who wants to call him Martin, and who wants to call him Christopher?)


 Martin, my darling, you are safe with us and we all love you.  You are a good boy.
That’s all I can say to this poor baby. L He had a 2 hour raging session this evening after I held him and got some Tylenol with melatonin in him.  During this he/I managed to break one of his scabs on his face.  He has displayed self injurious behavior recently; his cheek is scabbing over finally but it looks like he scratches and hits his cheek.  Tylenol was given in hopes to help the cheek; but I fear I did more harm than good.  He needed to be held in the nurse position for the syringe.  I melted the melatonin in a drop of water and added the Tylenol and sucked it into the syringe and gave it; more forced it.  He is good at resisting; I found the gap in his front bottom teeth and he got about ½ of the 5ml dose. 
HOWEVER, he spent over 2 hours raging.  And I mean RAGING.  Self abusive, screaming, crying and all.  It was a change of pace not having to bob and weave per Jacob method but broke my heart to see him so distraught.  And that’s exactly what he was.  Poor baby has NO clue what’s going on.  If I could change 1 thing in the adoption process so far it would be to have someone with us closely to be able to explain to the children what is going on.  The people here on the “team” are great;  I love them all for what they do and I can tell their heart is really in it!  But to just be able to have someone who’s sole job is to tell the children they are safe and with their new family; to be able to tell us if any of their communication is in Bulgarian or gestures that maybe we are not familiar with but are customary in their country. 
Dad did a FANTASTIC job with Martin!!!!!!!!  I am very impressed and Martin, while mad at the situation, clearly displayed comfort when in dad’s presence.  Papa asked me to be with Martin once while he went to the restroom.  At this point it was to the point of no return; Martin needed both hands held or prevented from going to his face to smack/punch/scratch/hit himself.  Plus he was banging his body and head on the crib and trying to climb out, all while screaming.  GOD BLESS Deyan; baby fell asleep during the commotion! 
Deyan and I kicked it for a couple hours while dad and James went to get Christopher.  I was VERRRYYY distraught that he was not eating.  I took him to breakfast in his stroller.  We were the only people there; it started at 7 and we were there at about 7:30.  I took him into the breakfast nook and faced him out so he could see me.  I got my coffee (the most important thing to start the day; ask anyone ;) ) and filled my plate so I wouldn’t have to go back for things for me.  (I had 2 small rolls and put ham, turkey, cheese, jam and butter on my plate along with slices of kiwi, oranges and grapefruit.)  I got Deyan breakfast; he’s been LOVING the coffee cake with milk and has eaten 3 pieces the past 2 mornings.  Well, this morning he flat out refused food; anything.  No matter what.  I tried a glass of milk just to get some protein in him and that was a no go as well.  I finished my breakfast and played with him while I did so.  We killed close to an hour and a half in the breakfast hall; complete with stares from just about everyone.  I was wearing my Reece’s Rainbow shirt  that says something like “It really is that black and white.  Every child with Down syndrome deserves a home”.  I’m sure the shirt helped with the stares.  I’m still in the middle of my tattoo design that is in memory of Jacob Henry, who passed before he could be saved from the despair of hunger, loneliness, fear and anxiety as well as to forever keep with me those who my family has been able to save and that we have been blessed with in birth. 
That brings me to my next topic.  Sadness.  I felt it all day today.  I cried this morning every time Deyan refused food.  He is so small and I know he needs what I am offering him and I don’t know why he won’t take it.  Every time he refuses I think of Jacob Henry and how he died.  I look at this precious kid sitting with me and know I can’t force him to eat even though I know he needs it and I know Jacob Henry died from lack of food at a child’s age.  Think of it; to die from starvation before you are 8?? Unfathomable and yet he did; and he was alone, scared and helpless.  Nobody to save him, nobody to feed him.  And here I am with a child who so desperately needs it.  On top of refusing food last night and nearly all day the poor kid has also been constipated.  I can watch his belly get even more distended, I swear it.  I have nothing to give him and even if I did, he would refuse it. Sadness again. 
We met papa, James and Christopher at the passport building and quickly got pics taken and out of there.  It is GREAT that Toni’s mom went ahead and filled everything out for us and waited in line. (she also shoved some people out of line who tried to take our spots..Go grandma, go!) Martin’s picture was first, which is great because he screamed so loudly it made peepaw,, grandma and even Mu roll in their graves in joy to the family addition!  Toni’s mom told dad to take Martin outside after his picture was done.  Deyan’s took a bit longer; 3 tries.  We got everyone back to the hotel and dad made a trip to the supermarket.  It took a while to get a cab back so James and I were with the little guys for a while alone. 
Deyan finally pooped..3 times..large each time!  He must have been changed standing up in the orphanage because that’s how he automatically prepares.  I go with it and he holds still enough that it only takes 1 person to change him.  When he’s wet I can just sit him in my lap while I’m in the boat position (yoga people know what’ I’m talking about) and he complies with every move I make.  After going to the bathroom he ate enough for an entire day’s worth of food in about 2 hours.  He LOVED getting banana yogurt fed to him through a syringe!  5 mls at a time.  I’m sure it’s because he doesn’t have to do anything but open his mouth.  He tries to push the syringe back so far in his mouth that the yogurt slides down his throat.  I make him work a bit more than that to get it; though I admit not much harder.  Any food in his belly is a bonus so I’m not fighting it.  Any way this kid wants food he gets it.  If I have to dance on the ledge of the Earth I will do it for him or Martin..or Jacob, Matt, Joey or James.  Hell, Emily, Julie, Dan or Catie, too.  Even if some of them refuse to speak to me.  Family is everything and one day everyone will come to that understanding and apologize for wrong doings. my soap box.
Deyan and Martin both took baths. Deyan LOVES the bath and would spend forever in there.  He knows a bath is when you wash your body and hair.  He must not have had time to play in the tub because every few mins he stands up, rubs his arms and tummy and hair and looks at me.  Martin, however, was terrified.  HE stood in the tub and watched Deyan but would not sit down.  In time little guy, in time. 
I held Deyan while dad held Christopher this evening.  Deyan looked at the photo album that was taken to him. I’ve only been showing him mom and dad’s pictures.  To each of their pictures, at different times, he has put his lips to their photos.  He also gently taps them.  I tell him who they are and that they love him, that I love him, and that we are his forever family; here for everything and anything.  And then I cry again. LOL.
Deyan and I walked and bounced as he fell asleep.  At one point he had his head on my shoulder and fell asleep.  However, he woke up because he dropped his ball.  I looked over at Martin and Deyan put his hand on my cheek and pulled my face back to look at him…anyone that knows Jake knows that is what he does when he doesn’t have all the attention.  Well, Mister Deyan, a bit selfish are we?! Bring it on, baby, bring it on.  There are so many people to spoil you and your new brother. J
Well, now that it is going on midnight I should get to bed.  Rumor has it Martin wakes up at 4-5am each morning.  And his crib is right by my bed. J
Leka Nosh everyone!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Sunday Goings-On

What a fantastic day!
Need to figure out how to link the youtube video of Deyan and me playing behind the curtain , dancing and playing for close to an hour.  Papa took a long nap today and Deyan was NOT having the nap time; how can you turn down a precious little boy who holds his arms out to you begging to be picked up?  Especially after he spent 6 years in an orphanage?  He has the rest of his life to take a nap; now is the time for snuggles, playing and laughing.  And that is exactly what we did for 3 hours together.  I walked with him, bouncing him and talking in Bulgarian; well, what Bulgarian I know.  I am able to say with confidence “good night” ,“I love you” , “you’re a good boy”, “you’re so handsome”, “it’s okay, it’s alright”, “give me a kiss, please”, “good day”, “good night”, “pee”, “poop”, “sit down”, “good” and “good job”.  These words, along with a few more that may be helpful in the near future, are serving me well.  I can tell Deyan responds to my Bulgarian.  Today we took a cab to church; English Mass right by the British consulate.  Deyan was clearly confused and a bit concerned with the cab ride.  He makes a throaty noise when he is unhappy, sad, discontented.  I tell him in Bulgarian “it’s okay, it’s alright.  I love you, I love you.” And give him a kiss and he stops making the sound and snuggles into me a bit.  Not a lot at all, but just enough to let me know he hears me and understands he is safe with us.  He went into a giggle fit as soon as Mass started so papa took him outside while James and I stayed for Mass. 
Mass was interesting, to say the least.  Parents just let their children run amuck.  Seriously.  There were maybe 40 folding chairs in the entire church and practically all the children just ran up and down the aisle like it was nothing.  I noticed this the other night at dinner, too.  We went to the Christmas market, which was fantastic except it was sponsored by the country.  No Bulgarian ornaments to be found, but we will keep looking!!!  Deyan did much better away from the crowd; enjoyed sitting on a lap or walking holding 2 fingers on a sidewalk behind the market.
For those who don’t know, Deyan can’t walk alone yet; he gets ahead of himself quickly when he’s walking with a finger..he prefers to just hold 1 or 2 fingers with 1 hand and have the other to balance himself but he gets so excited about walking that if he were just let go with just holding those fingers he’d fall on his face…so he needs help regulating his speed, which he doesn’t really care is his speed.
After a jar of salmon and veggie baby food we got a cab home so he could eat more; we got beer and brats on a bun for lunch which were DELISH.  Cabbie tried to pull another fast one on us; I was riding in back with Deyan and James.  Deyan was making his throaty noises again so I told him I love him and that it’s okay in Bulgarian and he calmed down again and sat quietly on my lap with his head right on my chest. ( <3 ) Got to the hotel and I took him right inside because he was nearing time for another dose of tylonel, poor baby has a cold.  Apparently cabbie didn’t start the meter and told papa it was 10 leva for the2.50 ride it should have been.  Dad told him “No” and the guy insisted.  So dad took out his phone and told cabbie he was going to call the police after taking a pic of his cabbie license.  He took off without any payment at all.  :-P
Deyan and I spent about 3 hours together just the 2 of us this afternoon.  He wanted to look out the window but seemed to be in sensory overload when he did, along with the hotel room being full of stuff.  I pulled the curtain around us to make a cave and that’s where we spent most of our time.  We danced, talked, looked at each other, sang and just enjoyed each other.  I’m so sad that it could not be my mom here to do this with him; but at least I am the mean lady who took him from everything he knows and mom can be the familiar face (hopefully) that he sees when we finally get back home. 
He ate another 2 jars of baby food after getting another dose of tylonel and finally went down for a nap at 5.  We skyped with the family for a bit and he woke up around 6.  He was not hungry tonight, which I am assuming is the cold.  I tried everything and he was able to communicate that he did not want anything I was giving him.  Good for communication, bad for nutrition.  He got a Triminic cough strip, which he HATED but worked wonders, as well as a melatonin crushed up with some water in a syringe.  He takes meds nicely, which is always a bonus.
He played so well with papa tonight.  He had a baby toy that you pull down like 5 inches and it vibrates as it goes back up.  He gave it to dad and put dad’s hand in the air up high so he would have to reach for it to pull it.  Then he turned himself around, leaned back on my dad’s chest and stomach and played and played; laughed and laughed. 
He needs mineral oil or prune juice; poor kid has not had a BM in almost 2 days. L  Toni said she’d take my dad somewhere to get him something tomorrow.    
I sang him the song, “I love you, you love me.  We’re a happy family.  With a great big hug and a kiss from me to you.  Won’t you say you love me, too.” And he seemed to try to clap my hands to the beat at times.  I sang for close to 20 mins while dad and James were out getting KFC for dinner; which was surprisingly good. 
When he gets tired Deyan gets giggly or throws toys wanting you to give them back so he can keep throwing.  I tried to teach him to throw to me so he could get them back but that will take time.  Slowly but surely.  After about 50 mins of him tossing toys and drinking about 4 oz of water from a cup he finally went to bed, close to 9:40 I think.  He wanted to hold his cup, so I gave the lightest amount of pressure possible while keeping control of the cup.  He drank pretty well; better than from a sippy cup.  He knew to wipe his mouth with the wash cloth but threw it after he was done.  Gotta work on that, too. 
Down side; the Bengals blew their amazing game against the Texans.  We were able to get a live video stream of the game.  It got iffy towards the end so we switched to audio only.  We are a freshman team; brand new players.  I will give them the grace of this year to allow time to get to know each other.  We are going to KILL it next year!  Papa sent mom the link so Matt was able to watch the game online, too.  It didn’t sell out so it was blacked out.  That is the stupidest rule of the NFL.  EVER.
Joey learned how to Skype today!  I tried to call mom while dad and James were out getting dinner.  Joey figured out how to answer, without video but that’s okay.  He was able to tell me that Emily and Jake were sleeping and that mom was at the store.  Matt confirmed this information.  Then Joey was able to relay to mom that I called; without me asking him to!  I was typing this blog message when I got a call from “Mary Stolz” on my dad’s skpe.   Keep in mind, his skype is under Marty Thompson, I believe.  So I answer the call thinking it’s my mom.  Nope.  It’s Joey!  He figured out how to call, without video.  He asked for “his James.”  When I told him James was asleep he said, “Okay, good night!” and walked away!  I had texted my mom to let her know so she came in with Jake and we were able to say hi.  The poor baby, Jake is having such a hard time with this whole situation.  I can’t wait to get back home and spend some time with him; he’s going to need it!
Well, papa and James are off to get Christopher Martin tomorrow so it’s just Deyan and me for a few hours!  Passport office closes at 1pm tomorrow so we all have to be there before then!  Wish me luck with the cabbie; let’s hope I don’t have to threaten to call the police; though I will if I need to. 
=We are so much closer to getting our whole family together; I can’t wait!  What a wonderful Christmas gift!!!  I will send videos and pics to my mom for her to upload!  Be patient though, she’s practically all alone with all the kids which is very hard; I know! 
I miss you all and love you!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Mary's Turn

It is 9:30 PM EST, I just got Jacob to sleep (Very rare that he is up this late...he is missing papa!) and I came in to post Marie's post that you will read next. For some reason, she is having trouble getting it to post from the Budapest, so she sends it to me in an attachment, I post it from home.

Notice, her first she cannot wait for him to wake up tomorrow...well, at 9:30 PM EST, it is 4:30 AM Sofia time, and guess who is awake????

That will teach her to say things like that. It is like he KNOWS!

I can't wait to get my hands on this little stinker!