My March Baby :) and almost 6 mo. home!!

Happy 19th Birthday
to our sweet Nicholas!
Today we celebrated the birth of our 4th son,
We thought he was the last of the bunch...
Enjoy a few pictures of our early years..
Nick is the one with dark brown hair :)

Christopher's wedding...

Tonight he had 5 little brother's and sister's, 1 big brother,
and 1 Pop-Pop and Grandma
singing Happy Birthday to him with much 

We are so thankful for Nick!

Time has been flying by! It's hard to believe we have been home over 5 months.
At 6 mo. we have another post adoption report due to Ethiopia. We had one at 3 mo. with our social worker.
Ethiopia requires a 3, 6, 12 mo. report done by our social worker and then a yearly report done by us after that until the kids are 18!

Here are some funny happenings that have gone on....

We were driving down the road and saw a little Toy Poodle running on the sidewalk.
E. hollered out (because most talking is done in a very loud voice!)
"LOOK! There's a SHEEP!!"
I couldn't help but laugh and explained that was a poodle :)

Another time I had taken all 5 kids to the park. (which goes to show how far we have come in 5 months!)  Nick was with me but waiting in the van because we only had a few minutes before we were to meet Randall for dinner.
All of a sudden T. say's, "PEE, I have to pee!!" I'm running to the bathrooms which of course are locked. He's having a conniption
  and I'm trying to figure out a private spot for him to pee. (there's a girl's soccer team practicing several yards away)
Frantically, I had him come by the side of the bathroom and told him to pee right there. He starts to pull down his pants and squat. I was like "No, stand up!" Pee!
He's now in a panic saying, "Ca-ca!!!" (poo!)
Now I'm in a panic! "Pull up your pants!!" "Everybody in the van!!" 
By now the baby has wandered off and everyone is looking at me like I'm nuts.
After gathering the other 4 sad kids we rush to the van and pile in.
I'm hollering at Nick to help buckle them all in and off we go to the 7-11 up the street. 
We rush in and ask for the bathroom where T. sits for awhile and feels much better!

There is a song T. learned listening to Randall's I-Pod in Ethiopia and all the way (and several weeks after we were home...finally weaned him off of it!)
The words are" I feel so alive! For the very very first time! I feel like I could fly, fly, fly"
Well, T was singing, " I peel so a lion, for the berry  berry first time, I peel like I could fly, fly, fly!" I didn't even know what the words were till Randall told me and I just had to laugh!

I had thrown out some dead roses out the back door into the dirt. 
Well the kids found them and replanted them in a pot :)
They were convinced they were growing!

They are so enthralled with the hyacinths and daffodils blooming...
"MOM, MOM, look! Flowers!!! Let me showm (that's how they say show)

The girls are very observant of women and what they wear. If I get a Kohl's ad or they see women scantily clad they ask me, "You Like?" I say, "No, that's not very good to dress that way...too short shorts, etc. etc."
Now they tell me "not good" only my 4 year pointed a gal out in TJ max who was dressed and commented right next to her all the while pointing at her.
So we had a talk about not pointing or talking about people in front of them :)

We have had a few talks which the girl's initiated about our skin color...they are very big on what matches...clothes, plates at the table, colors, etc.
So E. was saying, "Mom, S. matches you (our skin) and me no match."
We talked about her skin being darker brown and Mommy's lighter brown.
S. told me the other day my skin was yellow :)

They have come so far since they first came home on behavior.
We would literally have meltdowns and wailing fits. 
They would physically shut down and refuse to move.
We know it was due to all the change, fear, grief etc.

Learning to use words has been a big focus and as they have learned more and more English it has been so much easier to communicate their needs.

Randall said the other day that 
was feeling more normal
our NEW normal is inching it's way in.
(He said that after taking the boy's biking which
is a big part of our family.)

We feel like our family is melding together and we can sense when the kid's are a bit off 
or regressing.

Thank you, as always, for the prayers and encouragement!
It is amazing how God uses His people to lift up, encourage and support 
one another!

As a reminder to myself and all of you:

So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.

~ 1 Corinthians 15:58 

Brother's digging up Daddy's horse radish!
Very proud of all the roots they dug up!

Luke's 25th birthday!

beautiful baby

riding the pump track!

biggest brother Luke at bike pump track

Mommy coiled hair!

3 kids loving the sunshine!

Nick's 19th birthday!

Love, Tracy :)