I know I've been pretty honest in previous posts that transitioning to a family of five is challenging. But I want to give Asher a fun update like his siblings. (Carson's was here, Sydney's, here. ) It's not always about adoption related stuff, not always difficult. Much of the time, he's just a normal little boy doing boy stuff! I will say: life is never, ever boring around this place, thanks to this crazy kid! He is two years old and into everything. And I mean? EVERYTHING. His curiosity knows no boundaries. This makes it really fun to take him to new places. (I don't say that with sarcasm. I love experiencing new things with him!)
Sydney's preschool class went on their annual pumpkin patch, so Asher and I went along. He was very unsure about the rain boots...but was a huge fan of the puddles! It was a typical fall day here in the NW--sunny for patches, then cold and overcast, then rainy.
"Why am I wearing this?"
The kids were really cute as they listened to the farmer talk about the apples. Sydney and Asher are developing quite a sibling bond. They are the ones home with me for most days while Carson is at school, and they play and fight like they've been at it for years. Asher has settled into a very clear and distinct name for his sis, and it is "Nonny." When she is at preschool, he asks about her frequently. He calls his brother "Car-car." Lots of times when we are driving around town, just him and me, he likes to list through the names of people he knows and I will answer where they are. "Daddy?" "Daddy is at work." "Nonny?" "Sydney is at school." "Car-car?" "Car-car is at school too." "Tata?" "Tata is at her house." And on and on it goes. I like that he wants to keep tabs on the people important to him.
Asher, like many toddlers, swings the pendulum from dangerously brave to very scared. Climbing to high places, eating strange objects, running into traffic? None of those phase him. Animals, doctors and loud trucks? Very scared. This day I was trying to get a picture of the kids in front of the goat, but Asher would not turn his back to the goat! Gotta keep your eye on the enemy, people.
(I had to thow in a picture of the Birdie, since it was HER field trip. Cousin Krista made that hat. Isn't it amazing?)
I love fall, but I'm sad we'll be losing a lot of outdoor time. Asher loves playing outside. This picture cracks me up. Safety first here in the T household. Please don't show this table to the social worker. ;) He's working intently on some rocks he brought over to the table.
Asher got some fun toys for his birthday that are really age-appropriate. This tower is light-weight and very fun to stack. Even more fun to knock over. He does really well interacting with toys and playing, especially if he doesn't have to share. :) He's still not that into anything on a screen (which is great!) but yesterday he sat on the couch and looked at the black TV screen and said "George." So maybe he's being converted to our American ways.
This crouching position is one of his go-to moves.
I found a bunch of pics on my ipod that are completely out of order and not related to this update at all. But I wanted to post them on the blog so you could see them!
This was the first day the kids went to school and we had some Asher & mommy time. Often it turns into errand-running time (why go shopping with three when you can go with one?). But morning is a good time for him. He is *usually* pretty good at sitting in a cart and gets a big kick out of little games I play, like making the cart go really fast or pushing it away and pretending I can't catch up to it. He also likes to grab and pull anything on the shelves around him, or random women's backsides. Nope, not making that up. Grabby Grabberson here. He also likes to talk LOUDLY and says "HI" to all the people in the store.
This pic was in the backyard when Asher was playing with Carson and Syd. I think there is nothing he loves more than running around and being wild with his big siblings. He mimics EVERYTHING they do and say, watching them intently, especially in closed situations like the dinner table. If they laugh, he laughs. If they put a noodle on their finger, he puts a noodle on his finger. Of course they think it's hilarious and will have him do crazy or naughty things just for a laugh. He'll also parrot them, so they'll say things like "Asher, say 'Carson is best.'" Or "Asher, say "I love Sydney.'" I think one of the best things that has come from this little addition to our family is to see these three kids interact with such love. Don't get me wrong, he annoys the crap out of them often, but there is quick forgiveness, and then they seem to forget and let him back into their inner circle again.
One thing we love about Asher is that he loves books! When he first came home, he wasn't interested in them at all. He wouldn't even sit in our laps long enough to read 2 pages, and he tore more than he listened. But now he'll often bring them to us and sit through entire books listening and pointing at the pages. This morning I made a wonderful discovery...Asher was ready to get up before I was ready for him to do so, and I put three board books in his bed. He stopped whining and sat happily flipping the pages! It was so cute (and made this mommy's tired heart happy!).
I have to say that at his core, Asher is a really happy kid. Yes, we're still struggling with behavior and attachment issues--the challenges vary by day. His grief and anxiety are present, and we still ache to help feel more secure with us. But in his element, he seems very content and easy-going. He loves to laugh, and is learning how to be silly. He is totally game to get right into the dance parties with C and S. He even has this amazingly hilarious move where he pretends to be singing--but no noise is coming out. It's like he's lip syncing to opera. He squints his eyes and opens his mouth and shakes his head back and forth while holding out his hand. I tried to get it on video, but I was laughing so hard the camera was shaking! I will try to get it again. Just for you people, b/c you must see it.
One thing I'm so grateful for is that Asher is a pretty good sleeper. He usually is good for about 11-12 hours at night and most often a 2 hour nap. That is a lifesaver for this mama, b/c my son has two speeds: 100mph and asleep.
We are seeing that he can have a very gentle side. When he hears another child crying, he perks his ears up and makes a sad face and makes the sign for "sad." When one of us gets hurt, he very tenderly kisses our owies. I have a bad ear infection right now and have to put drops in. He asks about it ofen and saids "Ear? Owie?" and then he'll give me the most tender little kiss right on my ear.
Life is still full of lots of challenges and frustrations as we all continue form our bond with one another, but we sure have lots of fun with this busy little man. Next? We're gearing up for his first Christmas at home! Woohoo!