Saturday, November 22, 2014

Same Blog-New Look

When I started this blog nearly four years ago, I designed it to look fun and playful, just like my sweet little boy who was not yet two years old. At that point Benjamin wasn't even crawling, and he was still very much my baby. Today, I have an active 5 year old who loves to ride the bus to and from school for his second year of Pre-K. He is being integrated more and more into a regular classroom setting. He is learning to follow the teachers' instructions. He is swinging and sliding at recess and is very familiar with his daily class schedule. He is making friends. Just last week two little girls from his class sent him home with homemade cards!

At home he loves to initiate play with Mommy and Daddy. He loves to wrestle with Daddy and dance with Mommy. He is feeding himself independently with our supervision. He is using some sign language and recently started with a new speech therapist to introduce him to a touch-screen talker that he has been using at school and home. Hand over hand we help him push buttons for daily activities such at "eat," "drink," "all-done," etc..., and an automated voice says the word for him. It is a communication bridge until he is able to articulate words on his own. And though Benjamin is not yet verbal, he is demonstrating in many other ways that his understanding and comprehension are increasing in multiple areas. In other words, my baby is growing up!

With all of this in mind, it only seemed appropriate that this blog dedicated to my beautiful son should take on a more "grown-up" look. As we continue to journey through "Holland" Benjamin will continue to learn and grow and surprise us with all that he's capable of doing. No matter how grown-up he becomes, though, he will always be my baby!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Benjamin and Bruno: Two Little Boys-Two Different Worlds

Benjamin was born in May 2009 in the U.S.A. with an extra chromosome.

Bruno was born in June 2009 in China with an extra chromosome.

After his hospital stay, Benjamin went home with his mommy and daddy.

After Bruno was born, he went to an orphanage.

Benjamin has a bedroom decorated just for him.

Bruno shares a room with lots of other children.

Benjamin loves to play with balls.

Bruno loves to play with balls.

Benjamin gets daily hugs, kisses and play time with his mommy and daddy.

Bruno is well-liked by the orphanage staff, and he often initiates finding them for attention.

Benjamin hears the words "I love you," every single day.

Bruno may have never heard those words spoken to him.

Benjamin will spend this Christmas surrounded by family members who love him.

Bruno will spend this Christmas at the orphanage.

Benjamin is blessed to have parents who love him and care for him.

Bruno deserves to have parents to love him and care for him.

There are families willing to adopt Bruno, but adoption costs are high. Reece's Rainbow raises grant money for the adoption of children with Down syndrome and other special needs from overseas. Bruno is part of the Christmas Angel Tree fundraiser initiative this year. Shawn and I have signed up to be his Angel Tree Warrior, which means we have committed to trying to raise $1,000 towards the cost of his adoption between now and the end of December. Please follow the link at the top of my blog and make your donation today. Every gift of $35 or more is eligible to receive a Christmas ornament with Bruno's picture on it. This Christmas, lets help make one little boy's dream for a family come true!

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.--James 1:27