One week more

Amelie has now been a member of our family 1 week more than she was an orphan.  Her adoption trip was an adventure and it took a while for her to learn to trust us and be a part of a family. But now we have a 3 year old joker on our hands who wants to do every.single.thing. her big sister does – whether she is allowed to or not! She loves to color, read books and do everything barefoot. It’s been so sweet to see her change so much in the last 20 months.

We love you Amelie!

amelie china

Christmas Eve 2010 – the last photo we received of Amelie before we traveled.

china 2011

Amelie in China on the day she was sworn in as a US Citizen.

papa 02

Amelie’s 2nd birthday – home 4 months.

Amelie's 3rd Birthday Party

Amelie’s 3rd birthday – home 16 months.


On vacation at the beach in September 2012.

Amelie’s Gotcha Day 2011 – 1 year ago

Amelie Gotcha Day 2011
Click on the photo to see album

Click the photo above to see the Gotcha Day 2011 photo album, and see the blog post from that day.

It’s amazing to us that it’s been 1 year since we adopted Amelie in Yinchuan, China.

Gotcha Day 2011
Our first family photo.

Amelie’s swearing in day shortly before we left China.

Amelie has come so far in the last year that she hardly seems like the sad little toddler we met one year ago. She has grown 10.5 pounds and grown 4.75″ in the last year. Yes, you read that right. In China she was wearing 18 month footie jammies – last night she wore 4T footie jammies to bed. Now she is lean and strong and does everything in her power to keep up with Nadia. She doesn’t let her hands slow her down one bit and really I don’t even think of it as a special need. Amelie is very smart. In so many ways she was like a 12 month old the day we got her, but she has grown by leaps and bounds in every way. Now some quick stats about Amelie that I don’t want to forget.

  • She sucks her thumb when she goes to sleep. This is a vast improvement over her sucking her thumb 90% of the time when we got her.
  • She loves food. She still cries over food a lot, but instead of every meal every day it’s more like once every couple of days.
  • After 11 months with us she finally told me at a meal that she was full. It was startling since I didn’t think she would ever say that.
  • She loves sweets, especially chocolate. But eggs are her favorite food. Someone asked her that over the weekend and she said, “eggs!” right away.
  • She is a snuggle bug.
  • She loves music – any kind of music.
  • She loves to color and play dough.
  • She loves “choo choo trains”
  • For 7 solid months, every time we drove past a car dealership she would yell “balloon” (or at least her variation of it)
  • Now she obsesses over when we pass bodies of water or playgrounds and asks, “go? go?”
  • We see her smile so much now and she is even starting to make jokes.
  • She asks me everyday to do “cool cool” (school) so I have a set of toddler activities I pull out for her and she feels very important and says, “big guurrrlll”
  • She asks Mike everyday to do “woo back” which is a phrase she made up that involves being thrown up in the air and flipped. She would let Mike do this until his arms fell off.
  • She LOVES to be outside. And in fact asks to go outside constantly – rain, shine, day or night.
  • Books are her favorite toy. She will say, “ree ree ree” to anyone who will listen while trying to get a book in their hands so they can read to her.
  • She is stubborn and tenacious and feisty. And some days that really wears Mommy out 🙂
1 yr with Amelie
Click on the photo to see album

This was a couple weeks after we got home – she is thinking of giving me a smile.

1 yr with Amelie
April 3, 2011 – Amelie’s baptism day.

1 yr with Amelie
April 6th – about to have surgery.

1 yr with Amelie
The cast is off! Look at those fingers set free.

1 yr with Amelie
First trip to the zoo.

Mother’s Day 2011.

1 yr with Amelie
Banana themed 2nd birthday.

1 yr with Amelie
First trip to the beach.

1 yr with Amelie
4th of July.

1 yr with Amelie1 yr with Amelie

1 yr with Amelie
Water table fun for hours.

1 yr with Amelie
First Halloween.

1 yr with Amelie
First Christmas and all the fun that comes with that time of year.

1 yr with Amelie 1 yr with Amelie
Books and more books.

1 yr with Amelie
Our Amelie now! We love you sweet girl!

Ningxia photos

We had a camera sent to the orphanage while we were waiting for Amelie. When they handed it to us it appeared that it had been opened. So these were the only 3 photos on the entire roll that came out. I think they were taken for Chinese New Year.

Ningxia photos

Ningxia photos

Ningxia photos

Amelie’s Layers

The Chinese like to have little children and babies all bundled up. The day we got Amelie was no exception. This is how she was dressed on Gotcha Day.

Layer 1 – sweater and socks

Amelie's Layers

Layer 2 – topped with winter PJ’s.

Amelie's Layers

Layer 3 – Topped with snow pants, boots and a lined jacket.

Amelie's Layers

Amelie's Layers


And we were expected to bring a winter coat and hat for her to take her back to the hotel, which of course we did so the ladies wouldn’t come after us 🙂