Sunday, May 23, 2010


Another first for Jack this weekend as we just took him camping for the first time! Michelle, Jack and I met my sister, Carolyn, and her family (Jeff, Jeffrey, and Emily) at a state park near Richmond, VA for a weekend camping excursion. The campground was great and surprisingly empty despite the gorgeous time of year. The weather was great temperature-wise, but it did pour down rain on us last night as we hung out around the fire. We just moved the party under the canopy and didn't skip a beat. The rain kept the bugs in check, so everything worked out for the best.

As for Jack, he loved the weekend despite the fact that he is dealing with some really painful teething issues right now. For about 10 days now he has really been in some pain, and thanks to the absolute perfect timing of the Tylenol recall, we have not been able to really medicate him other than with baby Orajel and teething rings. During those 10 days or so, he has been waking up at night and just been very uncomfortable overall. Michelle and I were concerned with how this would affect him while camping since he was already going to be away from the comfort of his own bed/room/house, etc.

But Jack is a trooper and loved exploring the campsite with his cousin Emily. They had a blast playing in the tents, playing ladder ball and bocce ball (sorry for the bruise from Jack's bocce ball throw Aunt Carolyn!), and climbing all over the camping chairs and things. He definitely kept us on our toes. He is working on gaining the title of "World's Most Curious Boy" which means Michelle and I had to monitor his every move to make sure he didn't wander away for a second only to come riding back to camp on the back of a bear or something.

When bedtime came around, we had some trouble getting the little guy to sleep. Between his teeth hurting and the fact that he never wants to miss anything, he just didn't want to go down. Michelle some how channelled the patience to rock him to sleep, then she re channelled that patience a couple hours later when he woke up and cried for an hour. She finally got him back to sleep, then he was up before the sun this morning. Luckily for everyone, he slept the whole 2 hour drive home this morning though.

We had a great time camping and are really fortunate that Carolyn and Jeff have a great supply of awesome camping gear that they don't mind us using. We will definitely be hitting them up for another camping trip in the future, but maybe not until Jack has all of his teeth!

Monday, May 17, 2010

A SS# for Jackson!

Yes, after 6 months of fighting with the Social Security office - Jack finally has a SS#. We were close to setting up camp in the front of the SS office until they cried 'uncle'. So glad that he finally did receive this #, and not just because it is off my 'to do' list. We were also able to file for our Federal taxes last night (although we won't get the full Adoption tax credit), and we can also begin to move forward with finalizing Jackson's adoption in the U.S.

On a side note, our adoption agency was WACAP. This is also the agency that was recently suspended in Russia for the Hansen case. We worked well with WACAP, and actually had no issues to speak of. We have suggested WACAP to families starting the adoption process, and will continue to do so. Reading online tonight, I noticed that WACAP filed a petition in Tennessee to investigate the Hansen case. Apparently, the petition was filed due to no local agencies investigating the situation. We feel this should have been filed immediately with the local jurisdiction to show good faith to Russia. There are too many children and families stuck in the middle of this situation to allow for speculation.

Sorry for the rant....back to the best little boy in our world. Here is a list of new words he is saying. He has gone from 1 word "mama" to several.

Jacks Word list & Interpretation

Mama - Mama
Ball - Mall
Hi - Hi
Hello - Yellow
Daddy - Da-Da
I Love you - La lu
Night Night - Nigh Nigh
Hush - Hussss
Meow - Meeeeeeeeeew
Hop - Hop
Yes - yaaasssssss
Go - Go

He also knows a lot of signs.

Comb hair
Brush teeth

This weekend we are taking Jack on his first ever camping trip. His BFF (cousin Emily) will undoubtedly lead him all over the place while holding hands. It is pretty cool to watch these two interact. He immediately goes to her and they hold hands and walk around and play. Not sure how this got started, but it is super cute so we will try to get some good pictures this weekend to post next week. Emily loves being a big cousin to "Baby Jack" (we joke he will be "Baby Jack" even when he is 20 yrs old!), so I am sure they will have a blast this weekend!

Until later, here are a couple older pictures of Jack with his BFF Emily and his 2 doggies.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Road Trips and possible helpful medical news for adoptive families..

Michelle is currently on a week long trip for work and for those of you who are Facebook friends of Michelle's, you know that she found a dirty pair of mens socks in her hotel room last night. Nasty right? Anyway, Jack and I miss Mommy terribly when she is gone. Things aren't the same without her, but she and Jack had the cutest phone conversation tonight. The phone was set on "speaker phone" and the two of them chatted for a couple minutes, including Michelle saying that she loved him, and Jack replying with his version of "I love You" which sounds like "I la la". Jack and I went to the Aquarium today and are doing very well to keep out of trouble (so far). We can't wait until Mommy gets home!

On the medical front, I saw an interesting story on the news today. There is an over the counter test coming out this week that tests a persons' DNA to give them an idea about their likelihood of being genetically predisposed to certain medical conditions.

From the article below it looks like the medical community is leaning towards this test being a gimmick at best and it is not yet approved by the FDA.

While I doubt many of us will be rushing out to buy this particular test, maybe it provides hope for adoptive families who desperately want and seek insight into their childs' medical history. Maybe this is the forerunner of better tests in the future.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mothers Day!

Today is Michelle's first Mothers Day! I know that I am a little emotional just thinking about what that means, so I know Michelle has to be feeling a bunch of emotions too. She worked so hard to bring Jack to us, and she continues to work so hard for our family every minute of every day. We wouldn't be where we are today without the devotion she shows to Jack and I and we love her so much for that. Thank you Honey, Jack and I love you so much!

We also want to take a the opportunity to wish our own Mom's, Sherri and Reggie, a wonderful Mothers day. We love you both very much.

To all the other Mom's in our lives, from our Grandmothers to our Aunts to our Sisters to our friends, HAPPY MOTHERS DAY!