Wednesday, November 19, 2014

This, That, & The Other Thing.

It's been a little quiet here lately.  Want to know what I've been up to?!

I know at least one reader does.  I'm always surprised when I get comments from people that I don't know in real life.  I forget that actual people read my blog.  So to that sweet, dedicated, concerned reader who I don't even know - here is the answer to your question:

Pink or Blue?! from Ashley Gibson on Vimeo.


We will be welcoming a little sister into our family in March.  Carter has been working so hard on saying 'sister'.  Last night was the first time that it actually sounded like 'sister' and not 'bloddyter'.  I don't even know.  I'm pretty sure he's got 'baby girl' down pat, so at least we've got that to fall back on.

Carter has also been helping us pick out sister's name.  I don't know why, but it's important to me that he can at least kind-of say her name.  Maybe because if he can kind-of say it now, there's a good chance he will be able to say it really well in a year or two.  Maybe because there's so much that he can't say right now - I want his sister's name to be something he can say, and say confidently.

We've been cleaning out the office-turned-nursery, which has me kicking myself.  When we moved in back in March, I had a gut feeling that we should just leave the room empty.  I knew deep inside that it would be a bedroom soon...but guess what?!  We filled it with junk, anyway!  Stupid.  Always trust your instincts.

So I suppose you could say I've been nesting.  Or at least planning out my nesting.  With lists.  Lots of lists.  I will soon need a list to keep track of all my lists.  Which is, essentially, Pinterest.  Amiright?

My list currently looks like this:
Organize office in master bedroom
Set up crib (never too early, people!)
Decorate nursery
Wash windows (for some reason, this seems like something I should do before her big arrival)
Build kitchen table (this is on Jake's list - it should be done by Thanksgiving!)
Buy kitchen chairs (there's nothing more satisfying than crossing something off a list)
Organize Carter's closet (again, this just seems like a good idea)
Organize the basement (this keeps moving farther and farther to the bottom of my list.  Soon it will just be crossed off, purely for satisfaction's sake.  And I will put it on my 'Summer To-Do List')
Make info binder for whoever will be with Carter while baby sister is being pushed out
Pack hospital bag (I've got time, but it deserves to be on the list)
Arrange for baby to kick when Jake is around, so he can feel her

So that's it.  My month, in a nutshell.


Enough about baby.  Let's talk about Carter.

October and November are big months for us.  We do lots of reflecting and celebrating and crying and rejoicing and remembering.

We met Anton on October 7.  He became Carter Benjamin on October 24th.  We took him from the orphanage for good on November 9th.  And he came home - right where he belongs - on November 15th.

Six weeks filled with big emotions and all the feelings that one can possibly feel.  We watch old orphanage videos, and read his special life book.  This year he was able to verbalize some things that he's never been able to in the past.  Whether he remembers or understands is unknown - but we'll keep sharing with him.  Because it's his story.  And we are his only connection to his past.

And as we reflect on his past, we also see so many good things happening in the here & now.  Just yesterday, Carter's teacher sent me a photo that made me cry.  Hormonal?!  Maybe!

And these were taken at our field trip to The Little Farmer back in October.  I never blogged about it, although I fully intended to.  I wish you could have seen all these kids.

I think Carter gave 328 high-fives during our four hours there.  And they aren't given out of pity or obligation.

And then this, from his trip to the firehouse:

See where he is?  See who he's surrounded by?  This all makes my heart so happy.

The other kids really, truly WANT to know Carter.  They want to spend time with him at recess.  Does he do things that most Kindergarteners and First Graders don't do?!  Absolutely!  But they are part of an open, caring family-classroom.  The other kids know they can ask questions about Carter, and why he does what he does.  Education!  Advocacy!  It's all so very good.

We are so grateful for Carter's school - his team - his classmates.  Three years ago, I never envisioned Kindergarten being this good.  I think I was even fearful of it.  Everything felt so safe and cozy and protected in the Early Childhood setting.  I just couldn't imagine our sweet little guy moving on to the great big Kindergarten family.

While it's not perfect, and we're always working through little kinks, we couldn't be happier.  Carter is totally rocking this Kindergarten thing.  Duh!  I should have known.  He always, always, always surprises us.

Carter CAN!

One Thing I Know For Sure: Now you're all caught up.  And I need to go make another list - "Hosting Thanksgiving - 2014" :) If you don't hear from me for a while, now you know why!

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