Archive for July, 2009

A First Birthday


This is still just an adoption blog, not a blog of Grace’s life. But she’s been home two months and had her first birthday a couple of days ago. We thought her first birthday was a good excuse to sign off (again) with a progress report. (She’s only been home two months?! That’s how long we were in Kazakhstan with her!)


We’re incredibly lucky.  Grace is healthy and happy and she sleeps through the night.  Twelve hours!  (With two bottles and changes.)  She’s transitioning from two naps a day to one.

We’ve seen a lot of firsts.  When we met Grace, she was a lump who wouldn’t even try to crawl for an out-of-reach toy.  Now we’re chasing her.  We’ve seen her progress through sitting when placed, commando crawling, sitting up, and knee crawling.  Now pulling herself up to standing and sitting back down again is a favorite pastime.  Over and over.  Up and down.  She walks holding our hands or along the couch or from support to support, but not by herself yet.  She’s already exhausting us.  What happened to our quiet, little lump?

Much of her movement and climbing is about touching things.  She’s compelled to touch things.  Apparently, the whole purpose of standing up is to put more things in reach.


She’ll pull herself via the chair or couch your sitting on and let you know that you should pick her up.  As soon as you do, she squirms to reach the stuff on the end table she couldn’t reach from below.  Nice.  I thought you wanted to see me.

We recently caught her climbing a child size chair to get on the couch.  Why?  To reach a remote control left there.  She wasn’t consciously trying something new.  She probably didn’t even realize she was climbing.  She just really wanted that remote control.


She appears to understand what “no” means — sometimes.  She likes making a good screech or motorboat sound.  She’s waves hello and goodbye occasionally.  She says “ma ma ma” and “da da da”, but it’s not clear if she really understands what they mean.  She says “ma ma ma” a lot when she’s hungry. 🙂

She eats table food now.  It’s not mess free, but she can now put food in her mouth faster than she can eat it.  We have to watch that.  She uses a sippy cup all day and her nightly bottles are switching from formula to milk.

She’s flown to see one grandma and the other one’s coming to visit in a few days.  She’s met a lot of family and friends and she is very outgoing.  She likes attention.  She knows she’s cute.

She goes to swimming lessons, Gymboree, the Sprayground (a “water-enhanced playground”) and the beach.


She became a citizen when we touched down in the U.S.  Since then she’s gotten her citizenship papers, social security card and first bank account.  We’ve applied for her U.S. passport.  (She has a Kazakhstan passport.)


Grace is having fun and we’re having fun with her. Mom’s enjoying being home with her for the summer.  Dad’s still learning to get home by six.


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