Monday, June 20, 2011

One Year Forever Family Day Anniversary

It's hard to believe, but it's been a year ago today since Luke walked through the revolving doors of the Holiday Inn in Hohhot, China, on Father's Day, June 20, 2010, and into our lives forever.


June 20, 2010


June 20, 2010

We've watched him blossom before our very eyes this past year.  In some ways, it feels like we were just in China, but yet it feels like Luke has always been with us.  It's amazing how God does that - gives us such a perfect fit of a little boy for our family!  From the very beginning, it has felt natural - just like he belongs with us.  I'm sad for the time we missed, but joyful for the time we have!


April 2011

Luke has become such a little man - taking himself to the bathroom and proclaiming "Luke-ah do it myself" or putting on his own flip flops.  He can handle himself at the table and his eating utensils like nobody's business.  He's never used a high chair or booster seat from day one.  Never needed one and never wanted one.


Easter 2011
He now plays in rooms away from us, instead of having to bring his toys from room to room, wherever we are.  He is much more secure and confident.  We're still working on getting him to stay in a church class without Joy or me.  When we teach in children's church once a month, he stays with us.  Otherwise, he sits in big church with us.  If he ever goes to the toddler/preschool class, Joy is working in there.  He is still Joy's shadow and I don't see that changing for quite a long time.  That bond from the beginning between those two is strong indeed.  


May 2011 

The only Chinese he ever uses now is calling Colt gu gu (guh-guh), which is big brother in Chinese.  To Joy's dismay, he rarely calls her jie jie anymore.....it's Jo-eh, which by the way seems to be a million times a day.  I'm sure she would be rich if she had just a penny for each time he calls her name.  He occasionally says "bo bo" which is his Chinese form of hold me.  Most of the time now, he says, "Hold me Pah-nease" (please).  Jason calls him our little English major.  He talks "up a storm", constantly, and likes to use impressive vocabulary with authority, like "It doesn't make sense", "Well, not really", or "Are you sure", "Are you kiddin' me", or "Well, I don't know bout that". 


June 2011

He's grown alot in a year!  It's obvious by looking at him that he still loves to eat and is not picky!  He is now very close to 41" tall and weighs 47 lbs!  He is solid and all boy.  I call him a chunk.  The doctor called him "a tank".  


Can you tell he likes to cock that head and smile when we grab a camera?

Things Luke loves.....

- Hanging out with his Jo-eh (Joy)
- Cutting up with his gu gu (guh-guh - Colt)
- Mama's lap
- Daddy playing with him
- 18 wheelers - Watching them on the interstate, playing with toy ones, watching DVDs about them and talking about them (alot).  Says he wants to drive one.
- Repeating movie lines (thanks to his brother and sister) - especially some from Nacho Libre.
- Going to Lowe's and pretending he's going to Lowe's.  (loading and unloading).
- Trains - We have to pretend we are one of his coaches "coupled up" (so he says) and get off at different stations.
- Being outside (playing in sandbox, swimming, riding his little bike)
- Eating 
- Bossing the cat (Bambi) - she's VERY patient with him.
- Singing - constantly.  He stays on tune well, too.
- Watching Bob the Builder, Barney, & Caillou
- Eating other people's food
- Being read to
- "Reading" books (memorizes them)
- Helping Daddy or Pop outside
- Praying 
- Taking medicine (beats all I've ever seen)
- Talking....talking....talking.
- Eating yogurt with Grandmama
- Ice cream
- Music (pretends to play guitar and drums)
- Riding in the car (does very well in his car seat)
- Sweet iced tea
- Older kids

Summer 2011

Things Luke doesn't like.......

- Tags on clothes - Almost to the point of a phobia.  This is to the point that he cries when its time to get dressed.  We cut out alot of tags!
- Bugs (he calls them all spiders - so we never know when he's spotted a spider for real).
- Socializing with other kids - Prefers his small circle of family.  We're working on this.  I'm sure it stems from what he's been through.
- His stroller (I just sold it as a matter of fact -  he didn't want any part of it).  He's a big boy that either walks or rides in the shopping cart.
- To wait.  Let's just say patience is something we're working on as well.
- Getting his hair cut
- Brushing his teeth (has beautiful white teeth but doesn't like to have them brushed)
- Snakes (but then who does?)
- Cheese
- Some spicy hot food
- Vacuum cleaner
- Dogs (afraid of them).  He wants them put in jail (We just figured out this weekend what he was saying there while in Alabama.....and he was referring to their kennels).
- Cleaning up his toys


3rd Birthday

He can count to 20 something (although he leaves out 16 or 17).  He can sing his ABCs, recognize quite a few letters, write a few of them, spell his name aloud, tell his family's first and last names, recite a couple of Bible verses, sing many songs (Barney and praise songs). We just discovered he does very well with puzzles.  He has an excellent memory.  He never forgets places we've been and gives us driving directions.  He recognizes our home tree, Max PJ (you can read about our home tree here).


Loves his 18-wheelers!

He is very affectionate.  He gives lots of hugs and kisses and tells us all daily - going through the entire family with "I love you Mama", "I love you daddy", " I love you Jo-eh", "I love you gu gu".  He loves his Grandmama, Pop, Paw-Paw and Amber too. 


Blowing kisses...
Luke is still very slow to wake up..... meaning don't really try to have much conversation with him for at least 15 minutes.   After that, he's a different child.  Same way with meeting him at first.  Give him a little bit of time and he'll go from unsociable to non-stop talking or entertaining.


Our little Emperor


He's been very healthy.  Thank the Lord.  As a matter of fact, we just had a check-up with the Spina Bifida Clinic/Neurosurgeon and he was amazed at just how healthy of a three year old he is.  We don't have another appointment with them for another year.  He gave us signs of any changes that would trigger bringing him in for early intervention.  We really have peace about his entire health.  We praise the Lord for this and give Him the glory.


Mr. Mischievous

Overall, it's been a different year with all of us adjusting to a new lifestyle and routine, but I wouldn't change anything about it.  We've been home alot more this year and that's been great for our family.  This was exactly what we all needed and the benefits for all of us are apparent.

I'm so thankful....we're so thankful.... for the blessing of Luke and just can't imagine life without him.  God is good!


Making a mini toolbox for daddy for Father's Day this weekend.
Our family is very grateful for your prayers in bringing Luke home and for his adjustment and for sharing this journey with us and celebrating.  Thank you!


And as always, thank you for sticking with me through my blogging and non-bloggin' moments, and for stopping by today!  Have a blessed day!  :) 

73 comments:

Elle Bee said...

Hi Tammy, this is a beautiful post! I was wondering if you'd mind sharing with me what adoption agency you used? Also, did Luke have spina bifida? Do you have a post that talks about that? If that's not something you want to broadcast, no worries! I'm thankful for the glimpse into your amazing family!

Elle

LynnMarie said...

What a double blessing! You are a blessing to him and give him the tools to grow. He is a blessing to you and gives you lots to be thankful for. Good trade off I say!

terrypi said...

Tammy, thank you so much for sharing your life with us. I always look forward to new posts from you. Luke is sure adorable. Your family is so blessed to have him in your life. Colt and Joy are also beautiful. Such a wonderful family. God Bless you all

Joy ~ Doodlebug ~ said...

To my beautiful, wonderful mama,

This was a good post! Things sure have changed with Luke around...for the better! I hope that Luke doesn't stop being my shadow anytime soon at all! :D

Have a wonderful day, Mama!

God bless you!

I love you!

8!

Love,
Joy :D

ohiofarmgirl said...

What a blessing for you and for him...he is just wonderful. So many memories!!! Blessings, Dianntha

Carmen C. said...

He just gets cuter all the time! Love that head tilt-smile, LOL, my son did that the whole year that he was 3, so strange, because when he turned 4 he stopped, LOL!!!! He has adapted so well and learned so much, what a precious boy you have:)

jennifer768 said...

Hi Tammy ,This is a beautiful,very touching post .Thank you so much for sharing so much of Luke with us .His pics show the joy and love that he receives each minute of the day. Your entire family is wonderful and inspiring.Luke is adorable and I really am enjoying getting to know the whole clan .May God continue to bless and keep you all!Hugs,Jen

Bama said...

Happy Anniversary! Tammy, it really warms my heart when I think of all your family has done to make Luke a part of your family. God truly IS good in all things! May He continue to bless you all.
~Carolyn

Sheila said...

God is good indeed! He has made sure that this sweet little boy had such a warm and loving family to go to. Blessings all around. Adoption is not for everyone and I so admire those who have chosen to. If circumstances were different for me I would love to adopt.
Thank you for sharing such a personal journey.
Blessings,
Sheila

Linda ★ Parker's Paradise said...

The Lord does work in mysterious ways. He has brought together another perfect family. I love watching the families adjust and grow, but I loved your family long before this journey began. I have been so proud of what has transpired within your family, as well as my own. I feel so blessed, knowing you and seeing the happiness you have created by adding this child. I feel so blessed to also have watched the same joy in my own family. God is good.......
Many, many more blessings ahead for us all, my friend!
Enjoy your celebration of life!
★Linda★

Paula said...

Awwww... Luke loves sweet tea? A boy after my own heart!!
He is such a doll, Tammy~ I want to pinch his cheeks off!

Dan said...

Tammy~

I cannot believe it has been a year since you first saw Luke. It seems like yesterday! He is so blessed to be a part of your wonderful family and you are so blessed to have him. He is a cutie!

~Dan~

horse loving lineman's wife said...

Thank you so much for sharing. He is quite an amazing gift. After reading your post, really got me to thinking about when our kids came; 16 and 15 years ago. Seems like yesterday!! All kids are truly gifts from God. Have a good day.

Sharon said...

I agree that you all have been so blessed.
He is a darling little guy and looks so very happy.
I have enjoyed reading the journey from start to finish.
Thanks for sharing Luke with us.'
Hugs

Audrey said...

wow I can hardley believe a year is behind us!! He is such a beautiful boy. God is good. How blessed you all are to have such a wonderful family. I will continue to keep you in my prayers and look forward to the future posts.

Tanya said...

Hi Tammy,
I thoroughly enjoyed this joyous blog! Very hard to believe it's been a year...I began following you about the time when you were in the process and as you say it seems so short of time and yet so long. That is always so hard to describe. I can tell the joy he brings to your family!
Have you been enjoying your summer? Plans for a wedding? How is the "apartment" coming along? I need to get over to email to chat with you!
Hoping your days are bright and sunny!
Blessings and hugs,
Tanya

blessedmom's simple home said...

Wow, it's hard for me to believe it's been a year too. Luke has grown so much. What a blessing he is to you and you are to him!
Blessings,
Marcia

Karen/My Colonial Home said...

Hi Tammy,
What a fun and beautiful post.
Luke has grown with all of us this past year and before. We followed your journey with him and are proud of and for you in our hearts.
Happy one year Luke!
Karen

Blessed Beyond said...

What a super special post!!! He is such a special blessing! As are all of you to him!! And I'm so thankful that God brought all of you together! He is so cute! And I bet tons of fun!! Hope yall have a wonderful weekend!
Hugs and <3

Susan said...

What a wonderful, beautiful post, child and family!!! You are indeed blessed.

Melissa said...

Happy Belated Family Day to you all! I can't believe it's been a year already...Luke has grown so much. I loved reading about all his likes and dislikes and all the little bits about his personality.

Such a handsome boy!

Sandi @ The Primitive Skate said...

Thanks for sharing this wonderful post with us. I can't believe how much Luke has grown. It's hard to believe it's been a year already.
What a wonderful Blessing. Luke is adorable!!

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