Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Rafael's first Christmas at home!!!

We spent Rafael's first Christmas at my parents house 2 hours away. Rafael just loved all the Christmas lights and music and of course opening his gifts. He also loved eating all the goodies that come along with Christmas. I found him hiding in the living room eating a handful of chocolate kisses with the biggest smile on his face. Adorable!! He also had lots of fun dressing up and dancing. By the end of each day he was totally exhausted and he slept in late every morning. Gotta love that!!! Now we are all back home and Rafael is enjoying playing with his new toys. Hope you all had a great Christmas as well!!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Exciting news!

Friends of ours who just live a few minutes away are leaving on Wednesday to pick up there 22 month old little girl, Emma!! We are all so excited for them and Rafael is going to love having a new friend to play with. They will even go to school together. Now how amazing is that!

We've all been super duper busy since I returned to work on November 1. There has been no time for blogging and I'm lucky if I even get time to check my e-mail. I'm loving being back to work but of course I miss chasing my little monkey around all day! He is loving the sitters though and is so happy there. There are two little girls for him to play with there and they have so much fun. Rafael is often dressed in a princess dress or tutu when we go to pick him up. I think he would love to dress in cute little dresses all the time if we let him!

Rafael is getting into the Christmas spirit too. He just loves all the lights and is always after me to turn on the different decorations that light up. The tree is his favorite though. We just put it up last night and he had the biggest smile on his face as he placed each decoration on the tree. When I put the angel on top he was so happy. Adorable!!

I hope that everyone has a great Christmas and I'm really hoping that Jennifer and Dianne and lots of others who are still waiting soon get their referrals. Hopefully Decemember is that month that you all finally get some good news.

Monday, October 31, 2011

It's official!!

Today we finalized Rafael's adoption. It is 2 days short of when we got our referral. Rafael did great at the courthouse and things went so quickly. So he is now Rafael Tolentino Michael Ash. Wow!!! That really is a long name! I hope that he is a good speller!

Rafael also had his birthday party yesterday. It was pretty crazy with 7 kids running around the house but he had lots of fun. I think his favorite part was all the balloons. As soon as he woke up this morning, the first word out of his mouth was balloons. He had a barney cake which he also loved.

Tomorrow I head back to work after 8.5 months off!! Crazy! I can't believe that I won't get to spend everyday with Rafael anymore. We had lots of fun in the past 8 months and now he'll have lots of fun at the sitters house. He absolutely loves it there playing with the other kids so I don't feel too bad about leaving him. I'm sure it will only take a day or two and it will feel like I never even left work.

It's a rainy, windy day here. Not the best day for trick or treating but hopefully we'll still get out to a few house with our little lion. He loves dressing up especially in dresses and tutu's. Maybe that will be the costume for next year!! That's all for now. Happy Halloween!!!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Happy 2nd Birthday Rafael!!!

Our little cutie pants turned 2 today!!!! He had a wonderful day and especially loved blowing out the candles on his cake! I'll post those photos later. This morning he had a halloween party at playgroup and Brian took the afternoon off work so that we could go to the park and go out for supper. Afterwards we came home for cake. Yum!! Rafael's party isn't until Sunday but we had lots of fun celebrating today. Isn't our two year old the cutest little lion???? I hope you all enjoyed your day!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

This photo should have been first!!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Welcoming Fall

I can't believe that in just one month I'll be heading back to work. Rafael had his first day alone at the home daycare that he will be going to while I work. He did great!! He loved playing with the other kids and going to the park. We're so proud of our big boy!!

We are also so happy that Rafael will have a new little Filipino friend to play with very soon. A friend who lives just five minutes away was matched with a little girl in August. She is just 3 months younger than Rafael and I'm sure they will have lots of fun together when she comes home.

Rafael now says more than 30 words. I just love hearing him speak. It's precious, except when he yells no. We hear that alot!! We aren't having much luck with the toilet training but we'll keep plugging along.

His birthday party is planned for Oct. 29. We are having a Halloween theme and all the kids are dressing up. Rafael will love it! We bought him a lion costume and he looks soooo adorable! I can't believe that he will be two on Oct. 25. The time is just flying!! On Oct. 29 last year, our social worker sent us the e-mail telling us that we had been matched with a little boy and now a year later we are celebrating his birthday with him. Soooo special!!!!

We have been so blessed to become parents to this wonderful little boy. He is so happy and social and outgoing. He definitely keeps us super busy but he always keeps us laughing and smiling. I can't imagine life without him!!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Home sweet home

Rafael has now been home for six months!! He just had his first haircut, since coming home, last week. We think he looks like such a cutie with his new do! Rafael has now started the "no" phase. Everything I ask him, he will reply no. I hope that this doesn't last long. He also started to say "mine" all the time and is no longer such a fan of sharing. We're going to have our hands full with this little boy. We haven't gotten too far with toilet training yet. I guess we'll have to be patient. That's all for now!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

6 months ago....

Rafael now (well a few weeks ago)

Rafael on Feb. 19, 2011. What a sweetie!

Meeting Rafael for the first time!! He initi.ally came towards me, but then ran away

It was six months ago on Friday that we first met out son. It is still hard to believe he has only been in our lives for six months. It seems like he has been with us forever! It seems to us that he is doing wonderfully. He seems to be well attached to us, he is saying more and more words everyday, he seems to be understanding more and more of what we say, and he is just the cutest and happiest little boy ever! We have been so blessed that Rafael was chosen to be our son. He is just perfect for our family. Yes, there are days when he drives me a little crazy. Like Friday afternoon when he poured the dog's water bowl on top of his head, then he marked on the walls in pen, and then he threw his supper on the floor, but I guess that's just part of having an almost two year old in your house! I'm sure there lots more of that to come so we'd better get used to it. The terrible twos are just around the corner!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

We had our final post placement visit a week ago. I can't believe that six months has passed since we first met Rafael!! Our social worker is very pleased with how well he is doing and she is hoping to have his report finished by the end of this week. We are really hoping to have his adoption finalized by Christmas but I don't know if this is realistic or not.

Rafael has been busy entertaining his little girlfriend. He is totally googlie eyed when she is around and he runs around laughing and smiling and does funny things to make her laugh. Adorable!!!!

We've also started to potty train Rafael. I'm not sure how long this will take. He still doesn't seem quite ready to me but we said we'd give it a try just in case. He doesn't mind sitting on his potty but he doesn't pee in it. We only started this yesterday! So far he will sit on the potty for 20 minutes, then he will get up and pee on the floor! Patience, patience, patience! Doesn't he look so adorable sitting on his potty!

Monday, August 1, 2011

All dressed up!

Here are a few photos of Rafael that were taken on the weekend at my cousin's wedding. Rafael LOVED the outdoor wedding, especially playing with all of his cousins. He loved hanging out with the older kids in the gazebo and I caught him eating handfuls of chips with a huge grin on his face!
Rafael also had his first horseback riding experience this weekend. He did great but he had an awfully serious expression on his face throughout the whole ride. Our little boy is growing up!!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Getting wet and dirty!!

The weather here has been cooler and wet the past several days so when the sun came out yesterday evening, we headed outside. Rafael made a beeline to the ditch and proceeded to climb right into it and then to lie down in it. He was having fun so who was I to stop him!!! He really is all boy!!

It was just over 5 months ago that Rafael came into our lives and it is now hard to remember life without him. He is doing wonderfully and is finally beginning to say more and more words although he still prefers to grunt to let us know what he wants. Our final post placement visit is on August 9th. We're hoping and praying to have the adoption finalized by Christmas but this may be overly optimistic. Does anyone know how long it takes for ICAB to give their go ahead once your social worker sends over the final post placement report? Our social worker said that once ICAB gives her the okay, she can get a court date for the following week!!! I just don't know how long ICAB takes to do their part. I'd love any feedback that anyone has on this issue!