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Tuesday, December 09, 2008


Today I am beginning to understand the important of making the world of Kristina & Keith small. For some reason it hadn't really dawned on me beforehand. I guess some things come faster than others within the realm of adoption, but today it just "clicked" in my mind that these kids never did much more than stay in the orphanage, so anything more exciting than that could work them up. However, to be honest - it doesn't affect Keith NEARLY as much as it affects Kristina to be out and about. But church was still too long for Keith. Being LDS, we're in church for 3 hours, which is pretty taxing on these young ones. For you church go-ers - how did you manage that in the beginning?

So today I was going to go to the store, but we had planned to go to FHE (family home evening - mondays are set aside to spend family time together and sometimes we combine with another family) at my friend, Nicole's house - so I didn't go to the store. I don't know why - but I'm so proud of myself for recognizing what should have been easily recognizable, but wasn't. Anyhow, this evening at Nicole's house was great. We had soup, rolls, and cookie sundaes. One funny thing - we gave Kristina ice cream. It must have been her very first time having it because she said it was "too cold" and wouldn't eat any more!

Anna with her friend, Celeste
Kristina with a "machina" (car) - she LOVED playing in this. She loves cars and is constantly pointing out all the "machinas" everywhere we go. Perhaps Santa might try to find one of these cars for Kristina...?
Look at that smile! So cute!
Nicole and our Keith. I must say that Keith is really warming up to people in general. When we first visited him in the orphanage, he was very cautious and certainly didn't smile at all. Now he's becoming more friendly and it warms my heart to see him smile more easily. :o) Thanks for a great night, Nicole!


Conethia and Jim Bob said...

One suggestion, maybe you should slowly break the kiddos in to the whole church seen. Trying doing Sunday school for a while, them perhaps just doing the service part of church. We have some families that do this at our church. It is not as hard to keep the kiddos entertained if they slowly get accustomed to what is going on. Our friend just came back from Russia with a girl and this is the approach she used. It seemed to work for her.

Melisa said...

You are such a good mommy. Looks like you all had fun!

Diana said...

Don't beat yourself up for not "getting it" right away. Learning to parent special needs, post institutionalized children is a journey and it takes a while to learn the ropes. I'm still learning how to do it even though we've been home almost 18 months!

One thing I can share with you, though, is that traditional parenting techniques (including many popular ones like "Love and Logic") DO NOT and WILL NOT work with special needs children - especially if there is any history of abuse or neglect (which pretty much all PI kids have been exposed to to some degree.) In fact, parenting in this way will make the problems worse and will only lead to more stress, frustration.

A few books I HIGHLY recommend (and in this order) are:

“Learning the Dance of Attachment An Adoptive Parent's Guide to Fostering Healthy Development”
Author: Holly van Gulden, Charlotte Vick

“Beyond Logic, Consequences, and Control” – both volumes
Authors: Heather Forbes, Bryan Post (volume one) & Heather Forbes (Volume 2)

"Building the Bonds of Attachment" by Daniel Hughes

“Parenting the Hurt Child: Helping Adoptive Families Heal and Grow”
Authors: Gregory Keck/Regina Kopecky (Though there is a lot of great advice in this book, do use caution with the holding therapy the preach, as it is illegal in some states, including mine. It would also terrify kids!)

Some of these books may be available in public libraries, but it may be hit and miss. However, most states have a lending library available through DCFS specifically designed for books like this. I recommend purchasing all but maybe the last one as they are valuble references that you'll want to read over and over again.

Karen said...

One very concrete way of making our girls world "small" is the use of gates in our house. They dont have access to every room all the time. Also, limiting the amount of toys they have access too. And sometimes, if they are really wound up and they (and I) need some quiet time, I gate us all into one room, the family room, with a quiet movie and we all snuggle in together for awhile. :)

nicole said...

Thanks Jill! I can't believe how sweet your little babies are... they're both absolutely precious. We really enjoyed spending time with them... and you too of course! ;)

April said...

I love the pictures Jill Keith And Kristina are way cute I am glad that they are slowly starting to adjust. You all look very happy. It is nice to see that it is working out for you!!