Friday, January 25, 2008

Casting Call!

"Going from crawling to running! What a bright girl we have", thought the proud mama and puffy chested papa!

Absolutely wrong! Somewhere between last Friday night and this Tuesday at daycare, Devi managed to crack her wrist bone; the big one, the radius. With no permanent damage, except to our parenting egos, Devi now is wearing a cast on her left arm for the next three weeks.

The splinted arm - otherwise known as "The Club"

We don't know exactly how or when it happened. The doctor said it is consistent with a straight-armed fall which she sees all the time in toddlers, especially those who are pretty aggressive walkers and who are petite in frame. Devi went from crawling to running and stumbles frequently. The doctor figures that the injury happened over a series of falls, first starting as a small crack and then getting bigger over time.

We don't know when it happened because Devi has a very high pain tolerance and never showed signs that
she was hurt, which the doctor says is pretty typical of children who have lived in orphanages. She also said that children this age have soft bones and because we are not sure about her nutrition before we got her, this could also be a contributing factor.
We finally discovered the problem, when we noticed that when she would try and stand up she only would put one hand down on the ground to push up with and hold the other one up.

The doctors first examination didn't turn up anything. Devi still claps her hands, feeds herself, and acts totally normal even when you push on the wrist. It is only when baring weight on a bent wrist that she will
pull her arm back. The x-ray revealed the crack.
Patrick and I feel awful, terrible, we have basically beat ourselves up. I guess that means we finally are really parents.

After two days in a splint, today we went in for the cast. The only appointment available was smack dab in the middle of her napping schedule. So by the time we saw the doctor, Devi was rather punchy and stealing the hearts of everyone in the office with her silliness. Waving hellos and goodbyes to everyone, blowing name it, it was part of her act.

The ortho doc said this is the most common of little kid injuries. He applauded us for catching it, because it is not a necessarily painful injury so he figures about 50% of the them go undetected by the parents. It is
good to cast the arm to protect it from further injury, especially with toddlers who are continually stumbling, but he claims that it would have probably healed on it's own. They cast the whole arm, instead of just the wrist because he said that invariably the family would arrive home after casting, only to find the child in the car seat and the cast, intact, lying somewhere else in the car :) I assured him that would surely be us...we had this happen overnight with the splint all ready!!

Two nurses, cooing over our sweet baby girl, applied the casting material, None the worse for wear, Devi's tiny left arm, now encased in fiberglass, was nearly completed in about 10 minutes. I say nearly, as Devi quickly made a nice indention of her "bite" in it before it had an opportunity to harden! That's my girl :)
Interestingly enough, one of the nurses helping us also is an adoptive mother of a now 13 year old girl, Asha,
from Madras, India. She brought her home when she was only two. Sherri, the proud mama, showed us Asha's picture and we swapped adoption stories. The memories seemed to still be clearly with her some 10 years later :)

Noticing the clock on the wall as we left, we were nearly two hours past
our afternoon nap (boy, could I use one!) It was no surprise that Devi was fast asleep before the car ignition took hold, limp neck slumped into the soft stuffed belly of her riding companion, "Bunny", thumb in mouth. Playing on the care stereo was "5 Little Monkey's Jumping On the Bed" . I had to chuckle, with Devi's first and hopefully last broken bone mending, maybe we should pick safer music to play for our precocious toddler :)


Oh! How I've grown. I'm finally wearing some size 9 month clothing! This is a current view of my front side on the top. And my backside on the bottom! My feet continue to grow too.
I now wear a size 4 shoe when I decide to keep them on.

I love to read the paper with
daddy after Saturday morning waffles!

Bubbles are a new favorite thing. The perfect way to spend a rainy afternoon!
AH! The wonder of bubbles!

Today's activity was making paper hats out of daddy's morning News Tribune. Devi did all the folding. Once completed we had a parade around the kitchen island. I played the spoon and bowl...the spoon sometimes becoming a conductors baton. Devi played the tambourine and sometimes helped me by playing her metal splint on the bowl...all in time to marching music! It was great fun :)

Greyhounds are known to "Roo"...tipping their heads back, forming an "O" with there mouth and howling. We have taught Cayenne to do this on command. This is Devi attempting to get Cayenne to howl, all by herself. It is darling, so of course we encourage it and we end up the ones doing all the howling. It makes us laugh every time.

Best Buddies!

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Devi's Christmas Wish

A couple of days before Christmas the holiday dust seemed to settle long enough for us to take Devi to see Santa Claus. We got her all gussied up, complete with her black shiny leather shoes, and off we went to complete this very important task. It was no surprise that she toddled right up to the big man in red with no problem, Christmas wish list in hand. Santa opened it and read the note that momma had helped to write. Devi explained that she had been good all year and so thought she was deserving of frilly socks, bubbles and really would like to see snow. Now, anyone remotely close to the Seattle area knows that snow basically only comes in a spray can around here, but a little girl can wish. Apparently, so can Santa because after silently reading the letter exclaimed that he, too, would love to see some snow. With that, Devi placed her dwarfed size backside on Santa's large cushy knee, a photo was snapped, candy canes were exchanged along with an "until next year" kiss.

Darned if on Christmas morning we awoke to the most beautiful snow fall I've ever seen. That Santa!! The weatherman noted it was Seattle's first white Christmas in more than twenty years! The flakes were as large as sugar plums and light as a feather as they slowly swirled their way to earth. Beautiful! Best of all, it didn't stick, so the snow didn't interfere with anyone's holiday travel plans. (thank goodness...what would we have done with all the food we were preparing for Christmas dinner?) Thanks again, Santa. You made our first Christmas as a forever family THAT much more special.

Now I guess I would be remiss in documenting our first Christmas if I didn't mention the Christmas Eve church service. Devi was darling....a little ivory meringue...dressed in frills and lace. A very different look from her usual rough and tumble attire. Okay, so the first shoe and sock were off in less than 15 seconds of taking a seat on the pew. The program was decimated next, but a little fiber never hurt anybody, right? At this point, we are thankful that we'd chosen to forgo our typical candle lite service and attend the earlier one. Singing! Thank goodness. Singing was coming next...the girl LOVES to sing! When the music began she fell dead silent but was taking careful note of the fabulous acoustics's the high ceiling of the church provided. Devi chose to do her singing during the prayers so she would be sure to hear her own echoing voice! I'm absolutely positive God knew she was there! By the end of the service we were exhausted, but proud to say we made it through a Christmas service with a baby in tow. We'll keep practicing until we get it right! :)

I can honestly say this is the first time in my life that I've had to take a rest during the opening of our (Devi's) gifts...twice! People were so generous in welcoming her first Christmas with us. The hit of the day was a plastic slinky and a knobby dollar store ball. Well maybe the boxes that everything came in too, of course! She did finally get the hang of gift opening by the end of the day and try as we might, we could never convince her that tissue tastes bad.

Pat and I hosted the family Christmas meal for 15 of us and proved once and for all that even after being vegetarian for a number of years we can still prepare MEAT in our oven. And our oven, which has failed us many a time with it's temperature gauge issues has been wrangled into submission; the beef tenderloin was delicious.

For the first time, we have noticed glimmers of Devi's past, as she remembers those she spent her first 10 months with. We open the mail together, rather I open it and she eats it. None the less, as cards arrived from other adoptive families it became obvious that she knows the smiling Indian children in the photos staring up at her. She points to them specifically and smiles her classic "I'm so happy" smile. Jenya's photo brought the biggest response which included a gleeful squeal and a swinging of the arms too.

Merry Christmas 2007

Almost ready to give daddy his Christmas wish

He got his wish!

The family Ross singers....their rendition of Jingle Bells

A few memorable moments of the holiday...
1. The way Devi lights up when you sing Jingle Bells
2. Standing beneath the mistletoe with Devi and pointing to it knowing you will receive a very wet and wonderful kiss
3. Receiving our first "TO MOM and DAD" wrapped gift from her, care of the daycare...her hand print in
4. Hearing the cute way she tries to say Santa
5. Losing your daughter in the frilly fabric of her meringue dress while trying to fasten the belts of her car seat.
6. Watching her observe the snowfall through the family room window ON CHRISTMAS DAY!

7. Our first experience taking Devi to plead her case with Santa...won the big guy over :)
8. Our first invitation to the Christmas Mother/Daughter tea, hosted by our neighbor Carol.
9. Sipping a glass of wine and admiring the Christmas tree knowing that upstairs in her room, visions of sugar plums are dancing in her head.
10. After last years church service, imagining a child on my lap; having that vision come true this year (sort of because I don't think she actually ever sat down) knowing that this is only the first of many Christmases together as a family.

Day care December art projects

Small town perks! Santa does a drive by!