Friday, September 30, 2011

September 30, 2011

Well we had an eventful night. Jack has been so stuffy so we decided to take him in the bathroom and let the hot shower run. I think it worked pretty good, but the bathroom is pretty tiny so as Rob was bringing him out of the bathroom, the car seat bumped the sink and knocked it off of the wall. I didn't think much of it until I went to wash my hands and water sprayed everywhere. So I went downstairs and told them and Guillermo came back upstairs with me and fixed it. This morning when we got up, water was still spraying everywhere so they told us to move to a different room so they could bring someone in to fix it. Murphy and Jack watched Tinkerbell while Rob and I moved all of our things. We decided to go to Archie's for dinner today. We had been there in 2007 but Murphy was too young to remember. We've told her about it so she thinks she remembers. We went around noon which is early here so she was the only one in the room. The girl had her put her chin, nose, cheeks, forehead, ears in the flour. And then the girl tossed the dough and Murphy caught it. She really had a good time. They brought ours just as she got done and it didn't take long for hers to bake. So it was fun for all. 

Once we left we went back to Maku. This time, with Murphy strapped in. We found a really nice hammock that we think we will be a good fit for either the front porch or the back porch of the new house. We didn't buy it but will probably go back and get it later. We did get a musical instrument for Murphy, a bracelet for her, and a Colombian doll. She has one at home but we didn't bring it here. I tried to find some of the Mola shoes for her but they didn't have any small enough. We'll have to check back. 

By the time we got back, it was nap time for Murphy. And then we had our regular night...supper, no sleep, and lots of spit up. Tomorrow we are going to the new Ayudame which is in the country. A bus is coming to get us (as well as Dale, Diane, Luis, and Sandra) and we are going to the grand opening of the new orphanage. They won't actually be bringing kids for a couple of months. So we are excited about seeing it. We've heard about it from other people who have been there. Cecilia says it's cooler than Bogota and that we should wear sweaters. I don't have a sweater but I have a bright green Columbia coat that doesn't match anything! :) 

Watching Tinkerbell. It doesn't seem to matter that it's in Spanish. 

Our old room. (Not the big one at the top of the stairs!) Our sink broke and to fix it they had us move to another. 

The bathroom in the old room. 

I still forget sometimes but am not reaching in after it. 

The closet. Rob thought we had plenty of hangers. 

Her new favorite restaurant! 

Archie's signature trademark! 

She had so much fun making her own pizza! 

Making sure it tastes good! 

Ready to bake! 

Yay! Mama finally gets in the picture! (She's the one who can make him laugh the most!)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

September 28 & 29, 2011

Yesterday was a pretty lazy day. Jack is not what we'd call a good sleeper yet. Ayudame told us he slept from 10:00 until 5:00. They just forgot to mention that he wakes up about seven times between there. He has reflux and a cold so I'm sure neither of those are helping. His nose gets so stuffy he just can't breath. And then he is spitting up so much he gets hungry often then he spits up some more. For a person who needs a lot of sleep, I think I'm functioning fairly well. Poor Murph will whisper from her bed "Mom, can you get the baby?". She isn't getting much sleep either. Jack is up for the day around 6:00 so I take him downstairs and sit with a cup of tea (also my ritual with Murphy) while Rob stays in the room with Murphy. I feed him then around 7:30 he is ready for a nap (which has only been about 10 or 15 minutes...I don't know how this child isn't tired!) so we go back upstairs and get the car seat. Murphy is usually awake by then so we all go downstairs and eat breakfast. Hotel Paris has a full time cook, Juanita, and one of the maids, Sandra helps out as well. We have gotten into a routine of eggs and ham for Rob, french toast for me, and we bought Murphy some Lucky Charms so she has been eating those. We have freshly squeezed juice every day. Usually strawberry but we've also had pineapple and passion fruit. I've gotten so full from the french toast (they really aren't very big pieces!) but I think it's because I have plenty of tea and juice to go with it. On Wednesday's they serve a breakfast sandwich (like a grilled ham and cheese sandwich) and on Sundays they serve pancakes. Sandra also knows that Rob wants coffee and cold water, Murphy just wants juice, and I want tea and mineral water (the bubbly stuff). We are very well taken care of here! So by the time we eat and visit with Dale, Diane, Luis, and Sandra, it's usually close to 8:30 or 9:00. Then we go back to the room and get ready. Jack eats again and takes a catnap. So by the time we are actually ready to go do something, it's time for dinner. I had explained to them on the first day that I am a vegetarian and they have really had good food for me. Rob said the chicken they had one night was the best he's ever had. (Did I say that already?) We brought Ramen noodles and some Easy Mac for Murphy just in case she got a little homesick for her favorite foods and she hasn't even mentioned them. Juanita makes her way through the dining room (which doesn't take long since there are only two families here) to see if we are eating. So after we eat, Jack is ready to eat again and then we head out. Yesterday we went to Maku which is a souvenir shop. There are three levels and so much to look at! And so much to break! And Murphy was starting to wear down from a couple of days of travel, excitement, and no naps. So we basically made it in the door, to the back of the store, and turned around and came home. We walked by Zuetana, which is where we stayed in 2007, but didn't ring the doorbell or anything. We aren't sure if they'd even let us in. It was interesting walking our old route. The Tex-Mex place that we ate at the end of the street is now a furniture store. We stopped at Jacques and I tried to get a warm eclair and they wouldn't warm it up for me! They kept saying it would ruin it and I said I've had it like that before but they still wouldn't do it. So I had a cold one and it was still pretty good. We just came home then so Murphy could nap. Rob sort of enjoys those naps, too. Jack is on such a crazy schedule that I have been hanging out with him during nap time. He is so happy! Have I said that before? :) He really is. Even with a cold and spitting up all the time, he just smiles and smiles. He is also practicing scooting to the edge of the mat because he wiggle and wiggles. His hips never stay still. So hopefully that's a good sign and he isn't going to be pinned often! :) He literally can swing his hips from side to side like the bottom of a clock. And of course he would prefer to be naked. It's a little chilly here. Chillier than last time, at least at night, so I've been dressing him pretty warm. Which is a good thing because I don't want anyone coming up to me and telling me he isn't dressed warm enough! So after Murphy's nap yesterday, we just hung out here and let her play and let us all get more acquainted with Jack. It's odd that it seems he's always been a part of our family. We felt the same way with Murphy, too. It's like we were a part of the first four months of their lives. Which I guess we were since we prayed for them and loved them even before we knew them. We gave Jack a bath last night and the tub is a little small for him to lay down in, but not quite small enough for him to sit up in. The one we had for Murphy was a handy little thing that she put her legs over this little hump about 2/3 of the way down. So she kind of sat in it. He really wasn't thrilled with it but Murphy got in the shower with him and she can really make him laugh so it wasn't so bad after that. 

Today after our morning routine, Murphy and I went with Diane and Sandra to a little salon next to Carulla for  manicures and pedicures. Somehow in the translation, I didn't get one, which was fine. Murphy had both done while Diane and Sandra only had their fingernails. It cost me a whole whopping $13 for both. So that might be something we do when she gets antsy. We were going to go to the bank at Carulla (the grocery store) to get some money and Rob and Jack were just coming out of Carulla with the money! So we just walked back to the motel and hung out here. Another pretty lazy day. Jack slept little during the night again and then during his naps so we are all dragging. Except him I guess. The only time he gets cranky is when you don't fix his bottle fast enough. And then he will let you know he is not happy.   

Murphy's favorite thing to do is to play in the backyard. It's a small yard, but it has a swingset and she would swing and swing if we'd let her. There is a little play room on the other side of the back yard and she's been in there a few times, but she'd just rather stick to the swingset. She swings while we're waiting for our food then as soon as we are done eating. Fortunately it's nice enough during the day that she can be out there in either her pajamas or shorts and a t-shirt. It's dark by 6:00 so she can't go out then, much to her irritation. 

Sandra and Luis, the other two kids here, are 12 and 13 and they love Jack. They have been around younger kids their whole lives and are very good with them. Murphy has been around so many kids that age that she just is drawn to them, too. One of the women who works here has a daughter named Camilla and she spends time with Sandra and Luis once her homework is done. There is also a girl from Spain named Manuela that has been here on and off since we arrived. She is really good with Murphy, too. Her new brother is three and I'm guessing she has been waiting for a little brother or sister for a while. We have to keep telling Sandra and Luis that Jack throws up but it doesn't seem to matter. Maybe it will when they get thrown up on! 

Well, that's our pretty boring two days. Boring, but we are loving every minute of them. Even the sleepless part! :) 

How many Lewis' does it take to feed one baby? 

Deb, I see Marco in this picture! 

Binoculars! Her new favorite thing. 

Not sure about this bath. 

Maybe it's not so bad if Murphy makes me laugh! 

Just can't keep her hands off of him! 

Good morning everyone! 

Happy kids in the morning! 

She would feed him every time if we'd let her. 

Again with the "how many does it take" question. 

Always drooling. 

Finally found his hat! 

The lesser of two evils. (The pacifier, not the child.)

Part of the $13 manicure and pedicure. 

Sandra getting her nails done. She will be going home to Wisconsin! 

Sandra and Luis love, love, love the baby! 


Look back through the last week's posts as I am backdating the pictures I add to the correct date. So far I've added the consulate visit and our travel day. Next is getting ready and meeting Jack!

Sorry for the delay!

This is going to be a short one.

I used to update my blog during Murphy's naps. I'm still waiting for Jack to nap. Or sleep at night longer than an hour and a half. He has a terrible, terrible cold and his nose is so stuffy he can't sleep! Which means none of us are sleeping. The doctor is going to come over today and look at him. We're also trying to get a humidifier. It's pretty dry, which isn't helping. Rob is even getting bloody noses.

We love being at Hotel Paris. They staff is so very nice. I thought maybe I'd lose a little weight down here with all of the walking we do, but Juanita is doing her best to make sure that doesn't happen. The food has been fantastic. Rob said the chicken they had the other night was the best he'd ever eaten. They are catering to this vegetarian very well, too. I'm not very good with leaving food on my plate so I leave the table having eaten way too much.

He is a very, very happy baby. Even though he feels terrible. He smiles easily and laughs at all of us. I think once we get through this cold, he will be a very good sleeper. He is a thumb sucker and a spitter upper. So as much as it pains me, I'm encouraging a pacifier because I can take that away eventually. We are also trying to adjust his formula and switched to a slower flow nipple. It took him an hour to eat last night but he didn't spit up. Megan and Juel, it's Murphy revisited.

Murphy is a very good big sister. Overly helpful at times but we know it's because she is just so excited. She has calmed down since Tuesday and is settling into things well.

We are much busier than last time, obviously. We knew we would be, but we also thought we'd have afternoon naps to catch up everything else. Maybe next week! So be patient with me! I'll catch up! Next post will be pictures!

Oh, we meet with the Defendor of Minors on Tuesday. Much quicker than last time. We'll see how the process goes after that, but no matter the length of time we are here, we are going to enjoy every last minute. We'll be home eventually! :)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Getting to know each other - September 27, 2011

Still a little overwhelmed! 

Welcome, Jack! 

Time for jammies! Rob isn't so sure about the leg warmers! 

Loving his thumb!

The day we've been waiting for!

There are certain things I will never forget. Maybe when I can't remember anything at all, but until then, I will always remember October 23, 2007 at 10:37 a.m. and September 27, 2011 at 1:16 p.m. The days our children were lovingly placed in our arms. What a day this has been. I woke up and Rob was already awake. He said he'd been awake for about an hour. Not Murphy. She was out like a log. She was such a good traveler and really needed the sleep. I wasn't awake ten minutes and someone knocked on the door and said that we had a phone call. It was Cecilia, saying that she'd be there to get us at 10:45 but to be ready at 10:30 and that we'd be meeting Jack at 11:30.  We really wanted to get our stuff put away so we scrambled trying to eat breakfast, shower and get ready and put everything away. Fortunately, Cecilia called back and said that Maria Clemencia was going to be in a meeting and we wouldn't be meeting Jack until 12:30 so we had a little bit of time. At 11:30, Cecilia arrived at Hotel Paris and she said we had some time so we sat and chatted for a while. Mostly about Murphy but about her family, her time in New York... It was nice to catch up for a little before we left. When we got to Ayudame, we met Maria Clemencia right away and went to her office. She went over his referral with us, told us how much he weighed and how long he was, told us that he had jaundice at birth, which we knew, but said that the lights didn't help so he had to go to the hospital. While there, he got bronchitis and had to stay there for 12 days. We knew he'd been in the hospital for that long, but thought it seemed quite long, so now it makes sense. She told us which formula to use because he has reflux (and let me tell you...yes he does) and that he should sit in a carseat to sleep. And that he eats five times a day and sleeps from 10:00 p.m. until 5:00 a.m. every night. Murphy went to play with the kids for a while because she couldn't sit still for that long. And then finally Maria Clemencia got up and told Murphy to come with her and someone else took us out to the couches to sit. It wasn't long before we could see Cecilia with our video camera and she was talking so we knew they were close. They came around the corner and we got up and she brought him to me and he gave me a great big smile! It brought so many tears to my eyes. He is a very happy baby and smiles all the time, but that smile was meant for his Mama. Murphy was all over him...she just couldn't get enough. She wanted to hold him and touch him and talk to him. Such a good big sister. She's waited for this for a really long time. Poor girl...we've been talking about this for as long as she can remember. So we had a lot of "Murphy not so close" and "Murphy get out of his face" and "Murphy stop trying to pick him up"... She really has been fine but it was a little overwhelming for her. She keeps asking us "Am I being a good big sister?" and we tell her she's being a great big sister! Before we knew it, Maria Clemencia was gone and Cecilia told us we could go. So we all piled in a little tiny taxi and came back to Hotel Paris. We needed formula so they called the drugstore and had some delivered. What a service that is, let me tell you! And we walked to Carulla for a few groceries. It was nice to get out for a little bit. We didn't sit and stare at him for hours like we did with Murphy. It just seemed normal to have two kids. We are enjoying everyone at Hotel Paris. There is only one other family here and they are from Wisconsin. So we all get ALL of the attention! :) Everyone loves Jack and thinks Murphy is just a doll. The weather has been beautiful. Nice and sunny...just the way I like it. Everything is going really well and we couldn't be happier. Stay tuned! 

Passing the time with her puzzles. 

Mama and Daddy impatiently waiting while Murphy got to meet Jack first! 

Her first look!

Leading Maria Clemencia downstairs! 

Greeting Cecilia! 

The first of many, many smiles! 

Family of four! 

Thanks Klebsch's for the adorable outfit! 

Murphy picked out a toy for him! 

Making sure he sees it. 

I didn't tell them to use the flash, so it's hard to see us with Maria Clemencia. 

With Cecilia! 

We think this was one of his nurses. Another woman came and took pictures of them together. 

Here he is!!

The Lewis'...finally together.

Notice the arm around him! 

Mama's turn! 

She has been waiting for this day since she got her first baby from Santa in 2008! 

Change of plans already!


Presentation Day!!

Crazy day yesterday! We woke up to a phone call from Cecilia that we will be meeting Jack at 11:30! They are going to be here between 10:30 and 10:45 so we quickly ate breakfast, got our Internet information, and are now going to get ready! Will post pictures as soon as I can!

Monday, September 26, 2011

On our way to Jack!

Who knew a four year old would wake up at 4:45 a.m. and not stop talking the entire day? I guess we should have! Rob and I got up at 3:45 and finished packing and after getting everything in the pickup, we woke up Murphy, who slept in her clothes, and were out the door. I don't know what she was dreaming about because she literally woke up talking and wide awake and just kept right on going. We got to Aberdeen around 5:35 a.m. and were reminded why we fly out of Watertown. There is a girl in her twenties that was snotty to everyone should could possibly find. We tried to check in via the little kiosk and Murphy was in an exit row seat and it said we had to see a customer service agent. So by the time we got to the front of the line, it was close to 6:00 and she ripped us apart for not having checked in earlier. She couldn't get Murphy's seat changed so she finally just sent us through security. And then told us that our bags were checked in late so they might not make it to Colombia. Then yelled at the lady behind us and said that if we hadn't been so late, she wouldn't have let her on the plane since she was so late. We had two bags that were over weight and the cost went up just a little in the last four years. It was $50 then but $90 now. Oh well. We finally made it on the plane and Murphy and I were way up front and Rob was way in the back. Fortunately the flight to Aberdeen went really well. I was afraid it would be bumpy and we would need to drag Murphy on the next two. That didn't happen until the third flight! We had a couple of hours in Minneapolis and she and Rob played with her babies. The next flight to Atlanta went pretty good, too. She got a little sick during both landings but never threw up. Just said she didn't feel good. Once we got to Atlanta, we each found something to eat and exchanged a little bit of money. And all of the sudden it was time to go! So we found our seats, the second row from the back, and settled in for a five hour flight. Luckily they had movies! And food! Murphy watched Rio and I watched Bridesmaids. I have to say, it didn't do a whole lot for me. Rob was the unlucky one of the group because the connection to his headphones didn't work and neither of us was giving up our spot. They served supper and we were getting close to Bogota when the captain said "flight attendants take your seats". I didn't think we were close enough to land and all of the sudden the whole plane dropped. The flight attendant behind us, who didn't have time to take his seat, fell in the aisle and things went flying. I tell you...I was scared to death. I've never been on a flight where that happened and I hope to never be on one again. The captain came back on and said "Folks, as you noticed we went through a little bit of turbulence!". Really? We got in at 8:44 p.m. so it was dark when we got here. We got off the plane a little ways away from the airport and then took a little bus to the airport. We made it through customs OK, but were a little freaked out when they asked to see Murphy's Colombian passport and then needed to go talk to a supervisor for quite a while. We were afraid he was going to take it! Luckily he brought it back and stamped it, not the American one, and we were on our way to get our bags...all six of them. Twelve if you count carry-on's and backpacks. After taking the little bus ride, we got into the airport at 9:10 and were out the door at 10:10 and there was a little sign right in front that said "Lewis family" so we pointed at him and he came around to meet us. His name was Viron (like Byron) and he was very nice. He had to go get the van and I think it was a ways away because it took him forever to come back. He studied at the British Colombian High School in Bogota so his English was very good. Murphy finally fell asleep in the van but it didn't take us too long to get to the motel. We were here around 10:45 and put a few things away before we are all going to bed. We are all exhausted! For all of us, but especially Murphy, the whole idea of "Jack" has been so surreal and now it is all becoming an actuality. I don't think Murphy actually understood anything of what was happening before we left. She is such a pretender that I think she thought it was just another story she played with her babies. So we still don't know when we are meeting might be tomorrow and it might be Wednesday. We'll find out tomorrow! 

Leaving the grumpy airport lady behind in Aberdeen! 

No grumpiness here! 

One of the few quiet moments on the trip. 

Taking care of her babies in the Minneapolis airport. 

It gave me butterflies! 

She watched Rio on the plane. 

On the bus that takes you from the airplane to the airport. Lots of stuff to carry!