Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Brooklyn Graduated

Last night was Brooke's kindergarten graduation.  We spent the time between school and graduation at my sister's house and took advantage of their pretty yard to take a few pictures.

All of the girls wore white dresses for the first part of the program. 

Brooke received two awards as part of the ceremony.  She was "Most Improved Student" and had zero discipline marks. 

Brooke with her incredible teacher, Janet Garrison.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Brooke is a Great Teacher

This week we will be home from China for two months.  At times it seems like Brooke has always been a part of our lives and at other times it hits me that we are parents.  We are all learning and growing together. 

I am learning new life lessons all the time but here are some of the highlights.

  • I’m learning to slow down and live in the moment. 
  • I’m learning most things in life can wait.  This includes reading email, surfing the net or placing phone calls.
  • I’m learning that there is no such thing as a “quick errand” when you have a seven year old with you.
  • I’m learning that it is more important to listen to stories or fears in limited English than almost anything that is attempting to grab my attention.
  • I’m learning that long hair, pretty bows, ruffles and all things girly are what can make or break a day.  (This is news to a tomboy mom.)
  • I’m learning scary things can hide in closets but having a dog in the room or tying the closet door shut can help keep them at bay.
  • I’m learning a bike ride or trip to the park is far more rewarding than a clutter free kitchen at the end of the day.
  • I’m learning dogs can eat crayons with no side-effects.
  • I’m learning that you can listen to the same children’s CD everyday on your commute and survive. (Keep in mind our commute is 45 minutes one way!  I no longer have clue about what is going on in the world as talk radio is a thing of the past.)
  • I’m learning it can take months to read a single book.  (To be honest, I haven’t read a whole book since Brooke came into our lives.)
  • I’m learning you can never reassure an adopted child too many times that you are there to stay and won’t be leaving her.
  • I’m learning that love needs no words.
  • I’m learning how an incredible teacher can love a child and help her learn about Christ.
  • I’m learning that the gospel of Christ can be planted in the heart of a child even before their language is fully developed.
  • I’m learning to be thankful for the little things in life as I hear our daughter pray and thank God for them.
Most of all, I continue to learn how a gracious and loving heavenly Father answers prayers in ways I could never even imagine.  Ephesians 3:20-21

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

New International Version 1984 (NIV1984)

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Playing Around

We have been having fun playing together as a family.  I absolutely adore hearing Brooke giggle when she is playing with her daddy. They are quite the pair and she loves the rough and tumble play they do together.  She is getting so strong too.  It is amazing to see how she is growing in strength.  

A few days ago we went to the park by our house.  It was a warm evening and we enjoyed playing on the playground equipment.  The slide was producing a lot of static and we laughed so hard at what it did to Brooke's hair.  

Tonight was another first for Brooke, her first ride on her new bike.  We picked up her bike at the store tonight and she could hardly wait to get done with supper and try it out.  She loved it.  

We practiced stopping as she rode.  By the time we got home, she was getting pretty good at stopping.  She is very conscious of traffic around her.  If you have ever been to China you will know why.  In China, cars do not stop for pedestrians or bikes.  

School continues to go well.  She is starting to read some simple words.  Her language it growing rapidly and she even uses sentences from time to time.