Summer Fun

Here are a few pictures from the summer.  It was a pretty low key summer around here.

We stayed around the house most days and just got used to being a family of 5.

Clara Mei and Xander

Clara Mei loves to take a bath!

1st time in her high chair

Xander taking care of his baby.

Xander, his baby, and Clara Mei

Ariel, Patrick, and Xander went camping. It was Xander's 1st camping trip and he loved it!

Xander really liked eating outside on their camping trip.

Ariel moved to Miami University at the end of August

Ariel in front of her dorm

Ariel's desk

Ariel's got the top bunk

Clara Mei and Baba

Working to get those toes into her mouth

4 Months Old

Our girl is getting bigger!  At her 4 month well check she weighed 13 lbs. 3 oz and was 24 inches long.  Clara Mei has officially moved into 6 month clothes and they fit her great (I probably should have made the switch sooner)!  She loves to grab things and once she’s got a hold of it she puts it into her mouth.  Clara Mei is very good at holding her head up and loves to sit on your lap and watch Xander play.  This month she has also master the skill of sucking on her big toes.  She is constantly holding her feet and loves to get that big toe into her mouth.  Clara Mei has gotten much better about driving in the car and we can actually go on car rides with no screaming :)  She still does no t like getting into her car seat but if I sing the wheels on the bus as I put her in she will often get distracted and smile and sing along as I get her buckled in.  Her are pictures I took on September 14th.  Enjoy!

4 months old today!

3 Months Old

Time to play catch up! The big news this month was Clara rolled over a few days before she turned 3 months old! She was on her tummy and she rolled to her back and was so surprised. Once she saw me cheering for her she got a huge smile and then rolled back onto her tummy. I was not expecting this and I couldn’t believe she rolled both ways. This month she has also discovered her feet and likes holding onto to them. She is also using her fists and her feet to hit the toys hanging from her floor gym. Here are the pictures!

Look at that smile

2 Months Old

On Sunday, Clara was 2 months old.  In the last few days she’s become so much more aware of sounds around her and startles much easier than before.  She also discovered her fists and now puts them right in front of her eyes to study them.  Clara is also much more interested in her “toys.”  She watches the mobile on her swing and tries to hit the bears that hang from her bouncy seat.  She also really enjoys laying on her floor gym and studying all the things hanging from it.  Clara also seems really close to rolling from her back to her tummy.  She has been very close to doing this several times, but just hasn’t put it all together.  She still doesn’t really like tummy time and is still working on really getting her head up and turned while on her tummy.  This month Clara also started sleeping through the night on a regular basis starting at 6 weeks.  She decided her bedtime would be right around 9pm and most nights she sleeps until about 6 or 7 am.  Of course every once in awhile she does still decided to wake up for a middle of the night snack :)

Clara loves it when you talk with her and will get the biggest smile.

2 months old

We needed an outfit change later in the day and I took a few more pictures.

1 Month Old

OK, so I need to play a little catch up.  Here are some pictures taken of Clara when she was 1 month old.

1 Month Old

Clara loves to stretch her arms up over her head.

Pharyngeal Flap Surgery

On July 3, 2013 Xander had Pharyngeal Flap surgery.  This surgery should really improve Xander’s speech by stopping the air from coming out of his nose when he talks.  Xander was all ready for this surgery and was awesome when the day came.  He didn’t once complain about not being able to eat and even said we were going on a date when Baba, Xander, and I got into the van to go to the hospital.  He was so brave when they wheeled him into surgery and said “bye, bye” to us with no tears.  The last thing he said as they wheeled him in was, “I love you!”  Everything went well in surgery and the days following in the hospital.  This is a VERY painful surgery and I can’t imagine going through it myself.  Xander had a few days in the hospital that were rough but on Saturday things turned around.  We got him out of bed, up to the playroom, and then he started to eat and drink.  Xander was released from the hospital on Sunday and has been doing really well at home.  Here are a few pictures from Saturday and Sunday in the hospital when he was feeling a little better.

Xander and Pingue get a ride to the playroom.

Xander out of bed for the 1st time.

Xander enjoys some ice cream after playing for a while in the playroom at the hospital.

He really did like it, I promise!

Going for a walk with his IV latter in the day.

Xander with his IV on Sunday. He really liked his IV for some reason.

Xander and the awesome nurse he had on Saturday and Sunday. She really got him up, moving, and feeling better.

June Pictures

Xander makes Micky cookies

Clara at 1 month old

John & Tammy come for dinner to meet Clara.

Look who`s smiling now!

Father's Day

1 busy Baba!

Play time!

Getting ready for church.

Xander's train all finished

Holiday World

At the beginning of  June we went to Santa Clause, IN for a reunion with our adoption agency at Holiday World.  It was a great weekend & we had so much fun.  We decided this should be a yearly trip even if our agency changes how they do their reunions.

REading in the hotel room.

1st ride of the day!

Free drinks all day! It was awesome!

Xander favorite ride... the train

Ready for lunch

Clara in her hat. She did awesome on this trip. She was 3 1/2 weeks old.

Xander riding the train again.

Clara 1st ride, the train.

Xander outside of Santa`s Lodge.

The Rest of May

Here is a glimpse into the rest of our May.

Clara takes a nap.

Grandma & Grandpa bring us some dinner & visit.

Jing Jing meets Clara.

Aunt Laura meets Clara.

Uncle & niece.

Kal-el & Xander having fun.

Like Father, Like Daughter

Baba & Xander go to the zoo for the last day of preschool.

Mrs. Henderson & Xander

Xander & Ms. Mandy

Clara tries out her swing.

Grandpa meets Clara

Grandpa & Grandma Warwick get Xander a new bike.

Ariel's graduation party.

Clara & Grandma have fun together.

Clara hanging out.


Xander makes a train out of a box.

Ariel’s Graduation

Ariel graduated from High School on May 23, 2013.  We are so proud of her!  Patrick was able to go to the graduation ceremony while Xander, Clara, and I were able to watch it from home on TV.  We are so proud of her and can’t wait to see what is in store for her in the years to come in college!

Patrick and Ariel

Grandpa, Ariel, and Grandma

Adoption Timeline
  • Summer 2010 - started talking about adoption
  • Aug 19, 2010 - participated in webinar
  • Sep 22, 2010 - mailed in adoption application
  • Sep 28, 2010 - adoption application accepted
  • Oct 8, 2010 - fingerprints for home study
  • Oct 14, 2010 - fire inspection done
  • Oct 25, 2010 - Patrick & Kimberly complete physicals for the adoption
  • Nov 4, 2010 - finished Heart of the Matters Parent Education
  • Nov 9, 2010 - Ariel's physical is completed
  • Nov 15, 2010 - 1st Home Study Visit
  • Dec 10, 2010 - Kimberly's Individual Interview with Social Worker
  • Dec 16, 2010 - Patrick & Ariel's Individual Interview with Social Worker
  • Dec 19, 2010 - Received rough draft of Home Study to review
  • Jan 7, 2011 - Received Final Home Study
  • Jan 7, 2011 - Sent I800A form into USCIS
  • Jan 18, 2011 - We see our son's face for the 1st time!
  • Jan 21, 2011 - Submit Letter of Intent to China
  • Jan 27, 2011 - Receive Pre-Approval from China
  • March 7, 2011 - I800a approval
  • March 24, 2011 - Dossier to China
  • April 2, 2011 - Log In Date
  • May 16, 2011 - LOA
  • June 2, 2011 - I800 Approval
  • June 10, 2011 - Cable sent by National Visa Center
  • June 13, 2011 - NVC Letter & final paper work sent to Agency!!!!
  • June 23, 2011 - Article 5 papers dropped off
  • July 8, 2011 - Article 5 pick up
  • July 19, 2011 - Travel Approval!!!!!!
  • August 15, 2011 - Forever Family Day!!!!!!
  • August 25, 2011 - Arrive home; Xander becomes a US citizen :)