Friday, August 25, 2017

3 Years!!

Another year has passed since I blogged about Wren! Its crazy how fast time flies. I apologize for not getting a half year post completed. Happy 3 to our sweet, crazy, goofy little girl with the biggest personality a mom could ask for!

(I will add Wrens 3 year photos here when we get them done in a few weeks)

At Wrens 3 year check up she weighed 32lbs and was 37in tall. This puts her in the 64th percentile for weight and 49th percentile for height.

Health: Overall Wren has been very healthy! The normal colds, and a few ear infections over the last year but nothing major. At her 3 year check up I had the doctor check some blood work due to the scare last year when she had to have a blood transfusion because she was anemic. Thankfully her blood work came out normal!
Wren is about to have her first dental exam which she is super excited for! Hopefully she will enjoy it as much as she is anticipating it.
Wren also loves going to the doctor. Once time last year she was jumping on the trampoline and hurt her leg. She refused to put weight on it although there was no bruising or swelling. After a day of not putting weight on it and being very cautious we decided we should take her to the doctor to get a x-ray. When I told Wren I had scheduled her an appointment she was ecstatic and began running all over the house, not having a care in the world about her "hurt leg". At this point I decided to cancel the appointment and give it more time. Wren then became super upset and cried and cried. I had the nurse talk with her and tell her "mommy will schedule an appointment again if it doesn't get better" this satisfied partially. Needless to say Wren LOVES the doctor. I wonder if we will have a nurse or doctor in our family someday! Also at her 3 year appointment Wren had to get a shot. She said "ouch!" but didn't cry! She was very proud of this and all the way home told me who she was going to tell about how awesome she did for not crying for her shot.

Eating: Wren has gotten a bit pickier with her eating. It used to be she would eat ANYTHING! Lately she is more choosy but still enjoys and variety of fruits and vegetables so I am not too concerned. She still loves her chocolate and sweets and we have had to to set limits or only offer healthy things as she will typically choose the unhealthier option if given a choice. Some of her current favorites are cinnamon rolls, french toast crunch cereal, chocolate anything, noodles (plain!), and  rice and beans or anything Mexican really. A surprising dislike or food she is more indifferent to is ice cream. She never really ate a lot of ice cream due to her lactose intolerance. She is able to have more milk products just not plain milk. Because of this I think she never really developed a love for ice cream and so generally she might eat a little bit but she could take it or leave it. Recently Nile was drinking some cows milk, she didn't know it was cows milk, and Wren took the sippy cup and drank some. She made a disgusting face and asked me "mom is this cows milk? yuk!!" It is safe to say she prefers and enjoys her almond milk, especially when a little chocolate syrup is added.

Eating cold plain noodles and watching a movie while we worked in cypress office.

Sleeping: Wren sleeps in our bed still. She has a day bed by ours that we sometimes put her in after she falls asleep but typically she is with us. Awhile ago I asked Wren if she wanted me to move her daybed into Niles room and they could sleep together thinking she would possibly be ok with it because she wouldn't be alone. She was super excited! Come night time she continued to talk about how cool it was that she would be in Nile's room. I read them a story and tucked them both in. Then the screaming began. It started with Wren and was soon followed by Nile. Both screaming hysterically. I brought them both out into the living room deciding it would be best to just start the bedtime routine over. It took a good 15 minutes or so to get them calmed down and probably about a another hour until we got them both down for bed. Needless to say I won't be trying that again anytime soon although Wren did tell me the other day she wanted to move her bed into Niles room again. So someday we will transition her to her own bed and room but for now we will enjoy the nightly snuggles.
We have recently begun implementing a new bedtime routine in preparation for school and earlier mornings. We have struggled to keep routines with bedtime because both of our kids enjoy staying up late and with our job being a second shift job it works easier to put them to bed later anyway. We have been sticking to a routine though for about two weeks and it has been going great. I take both Wren and Nile back to our apartment around 8:30pm each night. They get their snack, then bath, then pick up their toys, read a bible story and then bed. I rock Nile to sleep first and then lay with Wren in our bed until she falls asleep. The whole routine takes about an hour and has been going so well. The kids have been doing surprisingly well with cleaning up their toys and know what to expect so their isn't any arguing from Wren when it comes to bedtime. It has also helped cut down on the screen time as she would often watch movies in the evening while Jesse and I finished up our work in cypress house. Jesse had stepped up more to do more office work that I often did so I can be with our kids for that hour. I am super thankful for his willingness to make it work!
Anyway Wren LOVES her sleep and snuggling. That has never changed and I am super thankful because I love sleep and to snuggle with her!

Potty Training: Wren is fully potty trained!! Yay. Our biggest struggle currently is trying to teach her that peeing outside is not acceptable. She loves to play outside in the summer so much she doesn't want to have to come inside to pee. She thinks its easier to just take ALL her clothes off and pee outside. She plays a lot with Ty our neighbor and she often tells me that she wants to be a boy so she can pee outside. We have had to begin talking through private parts being private and why peeing outside or taking clothes off outside is inappropriate. She now loves to ask for privacy when she is using the restroom and gets super concerned when I undress her that someone might see her privates. She doesn't quit understand yet but she is learning! This is especially important being at Gateway and having less privacy in general.

Talking:  Wren continues to surprise me as she matures. She knows so many words and puts so many things together cognitively that I am constantly surprised. She is super smart and remembers things very well and is able to make connections or pick up on things that I don't always pick up on. Recently I read her a bible story about the garden of eden and Adam and Eve getting kicked out because thy sinned. About a week later we were listening to the song Awesome God. One of the verses says "and the Lord wasn't joking when he kicked them out of Eden" Wren looked at me and said "what was the name of that garden mom?" and we continued to talk through the story of Adam and Eve again.
Wren also does very well with expressing and understanding emotions. She knows how to express when she feels sad, angry, had her feelings hurt, frustrated etc.

Preschool: Wren is about to start her second year of preschool at Grabill Missionary Early Learning Center! She is super excited. We went and got her school supplies the other day and she picked everything purple. Not sure she has a specific favorite color but purple might be it if she does. Wren also started Sunday school at church now that she is 3 years old. She has went twice and loves it! She will also be starting swim lessons at the YMCA in a few weeks. She did a pretesting for placement and although she was a little scared at first said she loved it and is excited for lessons to start. She loves the water so I am excited for her to learn to swim better and be able to make it to the edge if she would end up int he pool without a floatie. The puddle jumpers have been great for both her and Nile.

Personality: Wren is still a little firecracker. She loves attention and being wild and goofy. We often wonder if she will want to act in plays in high school. She loves to sing and dance. She can also be really sensitive as well. She is quick to tell us when we have hurt her feelings and consequencing often needs to be done in a gentle tone of voice. She does well with talking through the situation after the incident though and recognizing what she has done wrong. She is quick to apologize and give a big hug after talking. Unfortunately we do see her mean streak come out now that she has a little brother to pick on! I must say though he dishes it out as much as she does. Thankfully they have become more and more used to each other so they have a lot of fun together but there are still those moments when they both need a time out for bitting, poking, hitting, chucking toys at each other, stealing toys, and just being mean. Sin nature becomes quit evident when you have a sibling! She is very proud of her big sister status though and we are no longer allowed to call her our little girl. She can be such a sweet sister too though and loves to kiss/hug Nile goodnight and often wants to sing him a lullaby before I take him back to bed. Thats usually ABC's or something she makes up on the spot such as "lullaby lullaby etc". She will often follow me back to his room explaining to me to get Nile to sleep and don't let him cry and make sure if he cries I get him right away etc. She will make a great mom someday!

Things Wren Loves:
-Trolls Movie (recently after watching trolls one evening she was sleeping that night and yelled out "no troll left behind!" which is a quote from the movie. She thinks this is hilarious and will often remind me of when she said this in her sleep)
-Playing outside
-Playing in the sand box
-Riding her new bike!
-Scooby Doo (She loves movies that have a little suspense to them but being so little there aren't many that are appropriate for her age. I found Scooby doo at the library and let her watch it. She loved it and we have since bought 3 or 4 seasons of them. They are a go to when traveling and could keep her entertained for hours!)
-Helping me do anything (Recently I was cleaning a bedroom in cypress house and she was "helping" by wiping down walls with a wash cloth. I took a video for her older self of her stating that she loves to help mom clean and when she is older she will still love it and do it without complaining. We will see how that turns out!)
-Melted string cheese
-Getting new clothes or new anything really. She gets so excited and thanks me over and over sometimes even giving kisses. Then she loves to show off what she got!
-Sunday School
-Hot Chocolate

Things Wren Hates:
-Sharing with her little brother (although I will say they can play really well together!)
-Winding down for bedtime (she loves to stay up late!)
-Staying in our yard to play. She often is wandering to the other houses on campus looking for friends

I struggled to come up this list and asked Jesse for help. He didn't have many ideas either. Wren is such a happy little girl and has such an optimistic view of life!

Wrens Year in Review:
*I will post a few pics from each month of Wrens year between age 2 and 3
*Due to Nile not being adopted yet all his photos have to have his eyes blacked out.

September 2016

Wren and the gateway goat Bob!

The new play set put in at Gateway last year has been a hit!

Left: Wren and Ty two and half years of friendship and going strong! Recently we were talking about getting married someday and asking God to help show who she should marry. Wren promptly prayed "Jesus can I marry Ty" then she looked at me and said "He said yes!"

 First day of school last year 2016. Looking forward to this year preschool starting in about three weeks!

Fun at school.

Loves to make a mess!

October 2016

Learning to ride a tricycle

Pumpkin patch fun

Carving, and baking the seeds!

Getting to start spending some time with her potential "little brother" 

Left: reading books with daddy
Right: Trick or Treat!

 November 2016

Right: We caught her putting "lotion" on elmo. Turns out the lotion was cream cheese!

More bonding time! We were babysitting for Nile on and off while working on getting our home study completed in hopes he could move into our home.

          Right: decorating the tree at cypress house

Baby love! Our friends baby Zeb.

December 2016

Ice skating in Fort Wayne

First time really playing outside in the snow. 

Left: Getting messy with corn starch and water. Lots of fun if you have never tried this.
Right: Playdoh for Christmas!

Straightening Wrens hair for the first time! So funny!

Dollhouse for Christmas! She was ecstatic! Thanking me and kissing me over and over as I put it together for her!

January 2017

Nile was not allowed to come to our house until we completed our home study and had someone come and supervise us interacting him. During this time we visited him at his former foster parents home so we could continue bonding.

Right: playing doctor with our Assistant Houseparent Kristi

More School fun.

February 2017

Wisconsin Dells with her Steidinger Cousins

Preschool Class 2016-2017

March 2017

We finished our home study and set a date for Nile to move in with us on March 28th!

Left: Wrens real live baby doll :) Too bad he is about the same age as her!
Right: Hot Chocolate Lover!

Cooking with Kristi! One of the many things Wren loves to do!

Left: Grandparents day at preschool
Right: cousin love

More bonding time before the big move! 
We transitioned for 3 weeks before Nile moved in permanently.

Homecoming day for our little man!

Adjusting to this whole BIG SISTER thing!

April 2017

YMCA Swimming!

Left: Playing with the GW goats
Right: Haircut Time!

Easter Egg Rice Crispy Treats for school

Easter Sunday

Fort Wayne Zoo

Right: Gateway Barn Chicks

Fun with friends

Easter with the Steidinger Family

Hunting for eggs!

Picnic in the GW Woods

Leo Cedarville Park

May 2017

Left: Making a colored pencil garden

The GW pond

Left: Pajama day at school
Right: Last day of preschool
End of the year program at preschool

Left: Baby pigs born in the GW barn
Right: Homemade fresh goats milk ice cream from the GW goats!

Fun at Cypress House

Riding Horses at Pokagen State Park

Camping with Cypress House

June 2017

 Right: Niles classic cry face. 
Trying to get a picture for grandma of the clothes she bought the kids.

 Summer Vacation in Gulf Shores Alabama
With Karla's Brother/Sister in-law and their daughter

Dolphin Boat Tour! It was awesome! 
Got to see baby and mama dolphin and other dolphins jumping in our boat wake!

Out for Mexican food. One of their favorites!

Fun at the beach

Movie Night!! 

Wrens new hermit crabs Kirby and Jack be Nimble

Right: This is what happens when you leave three little ones alone in the kitchen!

July 2017

Playing Spider Man with Ty

 Fort Wayne Zoo

A much needed getaway in Chicago. No Kids!

Jesse's brothers wedding in IL

Happy 4th of July!

Left: Gateway shirts...getting ready for Auction day!
Right: Dumping the old Panera donation to the pigs to make room for the new donation!

August 2017

Right: First day of Sunday School!

Wren got her nails done at the salon! She picked sparkly pink polish


movie and popocorn

Birthday fun. We went to an airbnb in Indy over Wren's birthday that had 
a swimming pool and hot tub. The kids had a blast!

Left: Got a finishing pole from grandma Z. Wren had been telling everyone she knew that grandma was  getting her a fishing pole so I made sure to let grandma know! Wren wasn't disappointed!
Right: Once again this is what happens when these little ones are left unsupervised for a bit!

Left: Looking at the eclipse
Right: Gateway chickens!

Swimming at the Gateway pond. Nile pulled the wagon all the way to the pond by himself!

Another great year with our sweet little Wren! It's so neat to watch her grow a year older through these pictures. Crazy how much a child changes in one year! So thankful God gave us this sweet little girl and now our sweet little boy as well! More to come on Nile and how that is going in the coming month. One update is enough for me for now!