Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Bowling Nite

My Firefighter and I went out to dinner and bowling - adults only.


Then, a few days later, we took the girls. It was Apple's first time.

I was there, too, but since I'm the photographer, I'm invisible.

Gymnastics Fun


You call this fun? Too scary! Apple's fingers can't bend so she can't really hold on to the bar, but using the muscles in her arms and putting weight on them is very good for her.


Yep, more arm strength exercises. Get those legs up, too!

Thatta girl!

This is more like it, something she can do "All by myself," as she loves to say.


Jie Jie wants to learn as much gymnastics as she can and make videos of herself doing gymnastics before her spinal surgery.


Blossom has been working hard on her bridge
and can start standing up and bend backwards into it now.

Sissy is also in gymnastics but got off the floor before I could take her picture.

Another Medical Trip


This is Shriner's Hospital for Children Northern California. We came back up here on July 8th to check on Jie Jie's scoliosis, Blossom's feet and Apple's hips. Everyone is great here, very friendly and no waiting in the x-ray department! Everyone commented on Apple's painted toenails. I'd actually painted all the girls' toenails and it helped them have fun when they got examined.

The news was mixed:

Blossom's feet are doing fine.

The surgeon here disagreed with the Kaiser surgeon about Apple's hips and suggested a "wait and see" approach because, while they are deformed, her hips are not dislocated.

Jie Jie's spinal fusion surgery is being planned and scheduled and it will take place in less than four months. In the last 6 months, the thoracic curve increased and is now at 47.5%. She's also developed a significant lumbar curve. We can't wait for her to grow any more, lung function is now going to start being compromised. She's worried and scared and it's been very stressful for her, but she's working through it all in a very healthy way.

Part of me wonders if the surgeon said what he did about Apple's hips just to put my mind at ease so I can get through Jie Jie's surgery first.

Apple is Growing

Apple is 1/2" taller, the same weight and 2 shoe sizes bigger (at age 4.5 yrs.) than Jie Jie was at age 7 yrs. 3 mon. Apple is now in all the clothes Jie Jie wore when I first got her. Here they are wearing the same outfit.


July 4, 2016, Apple age 4.5 yrs., 33 pounds, 32 inches tall.


May 2011, Jie Jie age 7 yrs.


Jie Jie age 12 yrs., Apple age 4.5 yrs.


June 26, 2012, Age 8 years.

This darling Land's End bathing suit was a gift from another single adoptive mom who has a daughter from China and a son who was adopted domestically. It was for Jie Jie but she was never able to wear it. I've been saving it all these years. What do you think, Tiff?

Showing off her first pedicure with toenail polish. She was thrilled! She woke up in the middle of the night needing a drink of water and when she laid back down, she said with a dreamy grin, "I like my pretty toes." Those were also the first words she uttered in the morning when I woke her up.

Apple is still one of those kids who falls asleep anywhere when she's tired.

Our 4th of July Celebration

We had a low-key backyard swim/bar-b-q party with a few friends at My Firefighter's place, then had a front row seat to the town fireworks from the front yard. I made a fruit pizza.

Jie Jie is my best swimmer, though all three older girls can swim. Sissy is the best at diving from the side.

Apple is learning and can swim underwater about 6 feet, but can't come up for a breath yet. For some reason, all my girls learned to swim underwater first and learning to swim with their heads above water was hard. Sissy is still working on it, but chokes a lot, Blossom can now do a real doggy paddle. Jie Jie can actually tread water.


The girls showed off their cartwheels. Jie Jie is the only one who can do a one-arm cartwheel.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Medical Trip June 24-25, 2016

Here are a few pictures of Apple from last June. We were in San Jose, at our hotel, on our Three Medical Centers in Three Different Cities - For Three Kids - In Two Days - Medical Trip.



We went to my favorite restaurant in San Jose and shared their signature dessert.


On the way to gymnastics class a few days before our trip.

Family Day Anniversaries

It seems like the girls' adoption day anniversaries, what we call their Family Day, passed in a blink this year.

Jie Jie celebrated 5 years on March 28.

Age 12 years

Apple celebrated 3 years on June 17.

Age 4.5 years

Blossom celebrated 1 year since her adoption finalization on June 5, though she's been with us nearly 4 years now.

Blossom is now sporting glasses, age 15.5 years.

Sissy celebrated 4 years on July 16.

Age 17.5 years