Tuesday, April 28, 2009

It's been awhile...

Its been awhile since I've written.  If I was honest I would admit it is because we had a few rough days in there and after reading my last post, it is hard to post anything negative.  However, we're back to having good days again, so everything is looking up.  Miles has been doing some really funny things lately.  Yesterday he discovered that he could stand up on his feet and hands and look back through his legs.  I wish I got a photo of it, because he was seriously doing it all day.  But of course, he stopped every time I got out the camera.  He has also started waving bye bye to people.....ALL people.  At the grocery store, at Hobby Lobby, at the television, at Cooper our dog, Dustin when he leaves for work.  Let's just say he certainly knows how to draw attention to himself.  

Yesterday he got to go to his second artist reception and he seemed to have a lot of fun.  Mostly because everyone was looking at him rather than the art. :)  

Well, I'll close this post with some pictures of Miles, and my question of the day......Why can't I get this little boy to eat Strawberries - the most delicious fruit around, but he will put dirt and gravel in his mouth and chew on it all day long?
This is the cute outfit that my mom bought for Miles while they were out visiting.  It was perfect for our warm days this past week!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Miles in the Morning

**Disclaimer: At the request of Tiffany, I have been strongly urged to inform you that this post was not written by her. This was written by Dustin.** Proceed at your own risk. 

While Miles often wakes up from his naps upset (at least when I'm around), the morning is a different story. He quietly talks to himself until one of us gets him from the crib. Of course he does not cuddle with us, he'd rather squirm and wiggle...but that's okay. I'm not a morning person at all, but it's definitely worth getting up early for him! Maybe once you watch these clips you will agree. Anybody want to babysit? Anyone? Just kidding. Okay maybe a just little bit. 

When Miles is grumpy, as he was tonight for some reason, it is good medicine to sit and watch this and remember that he is not always fussy. I apologize for the shoddy and jittery camera work. 


We had a pretty good Earth Day today. Miles and I walked to One World for a meeting with students for their upcoming art show. I enjoyed some coffee while he opted for some warm tap water and a couple of bites out of the menu (just a snack). Of course he fell asleep on the walk home – that baby carrier really works wonders although I did feel a bit of a wet spot on my back where his head was laying. We had our first home visit which went really well. Miles showed off with his usual bit – 'How Big' and 'peek-a-boo' followed by chasing after the pets and then ending with climbing the stairs. Then to top it all off, he gave a nice round of applause (clapping is his new thing).

We continued our Earth Day adventures by working as a family out in the yard. Tiff pulled weeds and worked in the flower bed, I mowed lawn and reseeded some of the lawn that Cooper messed up. Miles sat and ate wood chips (with a dash of dirt and maybe some concrete). Then it was nap time. Yea!

Just so no one thinks I'm delusional with happiness.....

Here is the picture that was taken right after that lovely picture of him in the rocking chair. Do you think he wants down or something?? This is a classic Miles fit, and even though I'm not supposed to think so, and I'm sure this will change, I even think these are pretty cute. :) Maybe I am delusional.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Being a mom....

It's taken me a few weeks to get here. The first few weeks were filled with feelings of confusion, exhaustion, uncertainty, isolation, fear, and even a little bit of sadness. Of course there were the feelings of excitement and happiness and fulfillment, but they were overshadowed by these other feelings that totally caught me off guard. Anyone who knows me knows that I don't handle change well.......(I cried for four weeks before I got married) (I should say that it wasn't because of WHO I was marrying. :)) Well, despite all of that we are now on week 2.5 of being home and 1.5 of it just being Miles and me during the day. This is how it is going now.....

Being a mom is awesome. It isn't frivolous or convenient, but it is more amazing than I truly understood. Miles thinks I'm funny, even when I'm not trying to be. He cuddles up against me when I'm giving him a bottle, or rocking him. He sits quietly and plays with my hand while I'm reading him a story. Sure, he throws fits and tantrums, but right now, at this moment as I sit here listening to his monitor, I would venture to say that I got so lucky. He is everything I wished for, and more than I could have ever dreamt up. I think I got the best one. :) At this moment I think he's perfect and sweet and the best little boy I know. Right now at this moment I realize that being a mom really is awesome and having a hilarious, cuddly, energetic little boy is the best gift in the whole world.

It's Bundt, not Bunt....

Like many of you I'm sure have noticed, I spelled bundt wrong in the last post. This is a good lesson in following your instincts rather than Firefox's spellcheck. They obviously don't use bundt cake pans. But, enough of that........

Friday, April 17, 2009

Here Miles saw the need for a photo op right as I was getting ready to write today's blog......

Well things are finally getting on a schedule around here....a very loose schedule.  Basically it consists of eating, sleeping, eating things off the floor, mom vacuuming the floor so that he won't eat things off of it, climbing up the stairs, mom chasing him up the stairs and trying to teach him how to go back down them, and then playing in the trash.  
Today we mixed things up and went for a REALLY LONG walk downtown to the library to check o
ut my students' art exhibit that is up.  They did such a great job and won so many awards.  It was a great walk there - all down hill.  However, what goes down must come up again....and did we ever.  My legs still feel like jello.  Lucky for Miles he slept through the entire thing.  Now I feel like I could sleep into next week.  I make that walk all of the time, but never before with a stroller.  It's just another way my life has changed......just like the decision whether or not to make a "quick stop" at Target on my way home, or to go grocery shopping now or after Dustin gets home, or whether bath time should happen before The Office or after The Office.  The life of a parent is just FULL of moral dilemmas.  
Here Miles is playing with his new favorite toy - miniature bunt pans (is that even how you spell it?).  I'm just glad that he hasn't yet discovered the miniature ceramic bowls behind the bunt pans.  Thanks Nana for the cute monkey pajamas AND the miniature bunt pans! :)

Here is a picture of Miles after our walk today.  One funny thing that he has been doing...... whenever I pick him up and we walk up the stairs together (which is a pretty normal - run-of-the-mill activity) he looks right in my face and laughs and laughs.  Like he is waiting for me to find the humor in me hauling his 25 lb body up a flight of stairs.  EVERYTIME.  Inevitably I do end up laughing because it is so funny to see him laugh at it that I can't help myself. :)

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Better late than never....

I know. I know.  I have waited too long to post.  Nothing drives me crazier than a blogger that doesn't blog for days.  It has just been because Miles has done absolutely NOTHING cute in the last four days to warrant blogging about......okay, everyone knows that isn't true. :)  

This was a busy weekend for Miles because Grandpa and Grandma came all of the way from Ohio to come see him, along with his uncle Ike.  He had so much fun.  They taught him how to say "So Big!" and he loved doing it.  However, he did get lazy and resorted to a single hand raise everytime he wanted us to say SO BIG with lots of enthusiasm.  We did not disappoint.  Here is a picture of Miles' first Easter Egg hunt.  Each egg was filled with a Peep that we let Miles try, and he did not like.......I guess that is a good thing?

I could keep going, but let's face it...this is only my second day trying to get together a schedule on my own and I have to get back to my grumpy little boy that just woke up from a nap.  Maybe tomorrow when Dustin's home I'll get more done.....we'll see. :)

Thursday, April 9, 2009

We're getting there.....

Well, yesterday was frustration and successful all at once.  Miles didn't take his big nap in the afternoon.  It was hard because it was so obvious that he was SO TIRED!  Instead we had a bought of terrible crying on and off for about 2 hours.  We tried EVERYTHING.  Finally we went on a walk at around 3:00 and he of course fell asleep.  He can't last long in his car seat or stroller before he is completely conked out.  The only problem is that he wakes up the minute you lift him out of either device.  The good news is that we put him to bed last night at around 8 - just in time for LOST of course, and we expected him to wake up around 11 for the obligatory move from crib to our bed.  However, he never woke up!  Finally this morning at 7:30 I heard him stirring in his crib and went to go check on him to find him sitting there quietly waiting for me.  I was shocked!  Hopefully this is a trend.  However, I probably got just a little sleep because all night I kept wondering whether I should go check on him to make sure he was still breathing.  Although I can totally understand a family's choice to use the family bed, and we planned on using at least until we thought Miles felt safe and secure, it was REALLY nice to stretch out in bed last night and only wrestle with one person for the covers.  Anyways, here are more pictures of Miles over the last few days.  

We went over to Andrew and Becky's to watch the final game in the tournament and for Miles to meet some of his future playmates.  We hadn't planned on taking him out this soon, but we
 were getting major cabin fever.  This is Miles with Avery, who is only a week apart from him in age.  

Here is Miles just waking up in the morning in his cute pjs that Audra got for him as a gift.  Dustin always takes care of Miles in the morning while I sleep in, which is nice for
 me, and I think that he really enjoys that time of having Miles all to himself. 

Miles' favorite toy so far has been this little wagon with blocks that my grandpa Wyse made for him this last Christmas.  He is ALWAYS dumping it out and banging the blocks together and then dragging the wagon around.  

This is Miles with "Monkey".  You'll notice that Monkey has been in about every picture I've posted.  It was a gift from Isaac and Rachel when we got the referral and we sent it out to Miles in a care package for another couple to give him and his foster mother.  Monkey goes everywhere with Miles, usually in his mouth so that both hands are available for crawling, grabbing, you name it.  And for some reason Miles LOVES chewing on his nose and tail.  I finally just washed it today because the smell was making me gag.  It's still cute though. :)

Well, I can hear Dustin in Miles' room saying "See Miles, your crib is a fun place!" over and over again.  I'm not sure who he is trying to convince. :)

Monday, April 6, 2009


Well, for the first time Miles has taken a .....(gasp!) second nap.....AND (second gasp!) it has now lasted at least 45 minutes. I probably just blew it by posting it on our blog, but I am so happy I could cry.... literally. Steph and Dawn were just here playing with him and it must have really worn him out. It was also good therapy for me, and it felt good to talk to Dawn about her little Sophia (about 8 months old) and find out things like how much these little babies eat and sleep. (Since I have no prior experience.) Anyways, here are some cute photos of Miles that I'm sure you'd rather look at than my own ramblings.....

Sunday, April 5, 2009

They don't come with instruction manuals....

I just opened Miles' booster seat and Dustin installed it onto the chair. It was a total no-brainer, but came with this totally detailed instruction manual. Today we just bought a monitor at Target and brought it home. All you really have to do is plug it in....yet, it came with an instruction manual. Rewind two days....I brought home this complicated little creature who is the cutest thing I have ever seen, yet can throw a tantrum like no one else. Apparently he needs to eat and sleep - both which seem to be extremely complicated and sometimes painful......AND YET, HE did not come with an instruction manual. I have no prior knowledge of his habits, likes and dislikes, or soothing rituals. I have no idea what each cry means and I have no idea if I'm doing anything right. And just when I'm about to lose all faith in my ability to be a parent....he laughs, or smiles, or reaches for me. Huh.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Home Sweet Home!

I know, I know....everytime I'm following someone's blog that has traveled to Korea for an adoption I always get a little bit peeved on the day of their return when they don't post anything. I mean, you're only on the plane for 12 hours, it seems like in the remaining 12 hours of the day SOMETHING could be posted. Well, now I understand....these people are TIRED!

The morning we left went really well

- at least in the beginning.
The picture to the left is at our hotel room right before we had to leave to meet the driver. This picture to the right is of our driver with Miles while we were waiting for the other couple to check out of their hotel. Miles loved sitting up at the wheel and pretending to drive. Plus it was great because he was getting really hungry at this point and it was a good distraction while we waited for them.

Once we reached the airport it went a bit south - but just for a tiny bit because he was so hungry and we were stuck in immigration waiting for his paperwork. Finally Dustin got his bottle out and was able to fill it in their offices, but not before Miles caught a glimpse of it and fell apart. However, after eating he was happy as a clam and here is another picture to prove it. :)

The flight couldn't have gone better. Miles probably slept a total of 6 hours and didn't cry (by this I mean REALLY cry) once the entire ride. This was awesome considering the fact that he didn't really get to crawl around at all or move much. Here is a cute picture of him sleeping in the bassinet that the airline provides.
Nana and Papa came to pick him up at the airport and so we were very
grateful for that. It was the first time that Miles had ever been in a carseat and he did pretty well. They even had a delicious lunch waiting for us at their house. There Miles got to meet Cooper, our dog. I've had reservations about this, but when Miles saw Cooper he laughed and laughed - harder than I had ever heard him. He got lots of exercise exploring their house and finally being able to crawl. On our way home Miles sat in his carseat and we didn't hear a peep out of him because he fell asleep immediately. When we got home we were greeted by a decorated house and lots of balloons that Miles had a love/hate relationship with.

Finally we gave Miles a bath and called it a night. The bedtime kept getting pushed forward because we just kept getting more and more tired. Finally Miles fell asleep at 6:30, as did the rest of us.

Perhaps later I'll write about our experimentation with him using his own crib and how you can tell if a baby is REALLY REALLY hungry later. For now, I need to use this time when both "boys" are sleeping to get caught up on some very delinquent school work. :)


Thursday, April 2, 2009

Coming Home!

It is almost 6:00 in the morning here and we are just getting our stuff ready to leave for the airport.  The driver doesn't get here for another hour and 45 minutes, but we have absolutely no idea how long it takes to get a baby ready to leave, so we figured better safe than sorry. :)  Last night was a lot of fun, but also very sad.  Miles' foster parents love him SO MUCH.  To witness their grief will forever stay with me.  I can't really even put into words how sad and emotional the parting was.

However, as you can see from the video we had a good time once we got back to the hotel.  Miles slept in bed with us last night since that is what he is used to.  He was EVERYWHERE.  I think he successfully covered the entire surface area of the bed, including the parts that we were sleeping on. :)  

So, think of us as we get on a plane for the long trek home.  We're excited to get back and start this journey as a family. :)


Miles in action

The new family

Fun with Photo Booth! Is this for real?

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Well, the good news is...

Maybe since I am once again up at 3:30 am this means that I will not have any trouble falling into a decent sleep schedule once I'm back home.   Everyone talks about how bad the jetlag is coming home, but here Dustin and I sit at 3:50 am in Korea wondering if it could really get worse.  We even stayed up until 10:00 pm last night!  (Okay, that was after a near 3 hour nap that spanned from 4 to 7 in the evening.)  Just so you know Stephanie, we tried the restorative nap and cookies with tea and it was NOT good.  We had to FORCE ourselves up at 7 to go out to eat for dinner (since we haven't eaten dinner here all week so far).  The reason is twofold - I think we are so excited about seeing Miles again today, AND we did A LOT of walking yesterday.
Warning - this is not nearly as interesting or cute as video of Miles.

We started out the morning going to Itaewon - an area of Seoul where a lot of expats (I just found out what these were) live and own businesses.  There we found a lot of the American standard restaurants like McDonalds, Outback, Hard Rock Cafe, you name it.  We ended up eating at a place that the guidebook recommended named Thai Orchid.  It was very good.  Afterwards we went to a scroll painter that we've heard a lot about and had a sign made for Miles that had his Korean name, Yo Seb, painted on it.  It was so interesting to watch this man work with the interesting brushes he used.  Also, in case any of my portfolio kids are reading this, he didn't draw it out first in pencil!

After we bought the scroll, Dustin convinced me to go to one of the palaces for a tour.  I ended up being really glad that he did because it was very cool.  Completely different and opposite of other palaces I've been to, which is pretty much just Versailles. :)  We went to Gyeonbokgung Palace which the guidebook says is the grandest of the two main palaces and contains two museums.  Anyone who knows anything about Dustin knows how excited he gets at just the mention of "museum" - whether he thinks he'll understand anything they have in there or not.  What was so cool about the palace was the combination of ornate and simplicity.  The structures themselves are being completely rebuilt because they were burned down by the Japanese some years back.  I was surprised to learn this until I realized that their structures, minus the foundation, are completely made out of pine.  The buildings are so ornate, but the furnishings inside are completely simple and fit with the asian style that is considered so contemporary now.  We arrived just in time for the changing of the guards.

The strangest part, and perhaps the funniest was that for the first time in my life I felt like a spectacle.  It was some sort of crazy school day at the palace and so there were school-age children galore.  Since we've been here adults on the subway and such have just ignored us for the most part - unless we look lost then they are always coming up and asking you if you need help - which is great!  At the museum the children all wanted to talk to us in English.  We would walk by a group that would say "hello" to us in unison and we would say it back and they would all either start giggling or say "ooooooooo" really loud.  We had about 5 boys at different times come up to us, say "hello", ask us where we're from, and then run away to tell their friends.  I never realized I was so funny. :)

After leaving the palace we went to Insadong for some more shopping.  It is a very artsy part of Seoul, and my favorite thing so far.  Well, I've written enough.  In about twelve hours we get to see Miles again so I'm sure you'll hear from us soon!  Until then, here are some more photos for your viewing pleasure. :)  (I'm sorry, but they will just have to do until we can get some more of Miles.)