Better than expected! Only two meltdowns so far (from the same child). Since we have done this before we are hoping the honeymoon phase is over quickly so that we can get down to business, and move on. :)
CLOTHES AND STUFF
Once again, the children came to us with only one pair of dress shoes. At least, these kiddos’ shoes fit them. So we only had to buy tennis shoes and sandals yesterday. Everyone has enough clothes except for Annie. We went shopping for a couple of warmer outfits today for her. I still need to find out if our school is a uniform school or not. That will help me better determine clothing needs.
Adam is busily hanging curtains and installing door alarms and a gate. Joey confirmed with us that he does sleepwalk quite a bit so we thought is was still a good idea to put the gate up. The girls and I also went out and bought each of the new children their own sets of crayons, colored pencils, and coloring books. I swear I am reliving Fall 2008, and that is an awesome blessing.
Annie–adorable, always smiling, used to having her way and not being told no. She mixes her English and Spanish really well, and parrots every English phrase that she hasn’t heard before. She has already started using yes and look in English (just in one day). She is a good eater. This one is so young and so outgoing that it won’t take long for her to acclimate.
Bri Guy–very shy and private, not used to a lot of positive praise, very much like a toddler, The kids picked out some sunglasses for him, and he wears them night and day. He holds onto them and won’t let go. I can tell that the past year has affected him the very most. He is caught in between the toddler years and beyond without the language and emotional capacity to express his frustrations. We have stripped it down to thumbs up and thumbs down, which seems to be working. He could potentially be my favorite once we get past the initial issues. I know what strides we have made with Juan, and how far he has come. I see that potential in Bri.
Joey–positive, smart, well-adjusted, happy. This kid is fluent in both Spanish and English, Amazing. I do not struggle at all in having conversations with him. He is eager to learn, to help, and to try new things. He latched onto Danny yesterday for guidance. And today he has bonded with Juan over coloring and first grade activities. It is really great to watch him take to both boys. I know that we will have tantrums or melties down the road with him. But we only had a handful that I can remember with Danny. Joey is a lot like Danny so we might escape his transition with few issues. Today, I asked him what his other foster mom told him about us. He said that he was coming to stay with us forever. I asked him how he felt about that and he said he was happy and glad to have a family. Who does that sound like? He is also very used to his brother’s meltdowns at the other house so it has not affected him here. He doesn’t associate the tantrums with us. That is a blessing.
Is there a little craziness here? Sure. But it seems like just more of the same. We run a pretty calm and orderly household so it is not as chaotic as one might think. The children are already calling us mom and dad. I knew I wouldn’t be able to stop that because of our other four children. But it still makes me a little sad because I know there is that slim chance that they will lose us. I want whatever permanent transition they have to be as smooth and seamless as possible. And I don’t want to add to any heartache that they already hold on to.
As I write this, Annie is running and giggling up the stairs saying, “Daddy, daddy!” How can that not make me smile. :)