Actually it's from Ohio to Ukraine, back to Ohio, then to China

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Blog Archive

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry CHRISTmas

Merry CHRISTmas from our family to yours

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

9 lessons I learned while not blogging the last three months

So I've obviously been MIA in the blogging world. To catch you up to speed in the DSW (Damon Staci Wesley) household, here's what I've learned in the last three months. 

Lesson #1
While I always figured Wesley would break a bone, I never knew it would happen in the middle of the night when he woke up to go to the bathroom. But it did.
We went to one hospital, but they couldn't treat him because he was a child, so he (and me by default) got to take an ambulance ride to a children's hospital. Wes was in a lot of pain, but not too much that he couldn't at least enjoy the ambulance ride a little bit.

He healed amazingly quick - just three weeks!  

I love this picture of my brave little guy :)

Lesson #2
My parent's rock. Now this "technically" isn't a lesson I learned because I've always known how great they are (except for when I forgot in my teenage years), but for our adoption benefit garage sale, they worked with me and Damon in our garage in humid, upper-ninety degree heat for three days straight! My mother-in-law was a big help as well.

Lesson #3
There is nothing more adorable than a boy and his dog.

Lesson #4
Wesley loves his Grandma's convertible.

Lesson #5
Dogs can get hives (seriously), but Benadryl and a super-expensive trip to the emergency vet takes care of it right quick.

Lesson #6
Being 33 is the same as being 32.

Lesson #7
Halloween and trick-or-treating is crazy-exciting even for a kid that doesn't like candy. {Wes was a spooky ghost}

Lesson #8
Go Bengals!! {I know this isn't a lesson, but I just wanted to post the picture}

Lesson #9
Don't go so long between blog posts. I need to remember that it's okay to just type a few lines.

So what have you been up to these last few months?

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

I promise to post a "real" update soon

So I know I have been remiss, not updating in MONTHS! I promise to post an update by Sunday. I also need to keep in mind that posts don't have to be forever long, a few sentences or photos is okay. I let posts get so behind that the thought of catching up seems too much.

We're all doing well. Still a family of three :( Hopeful that our referral will be coming in the next few months, but that isn't really based on anything (just what I have to think to keep from going crazy waiting).

Saturday, August 13, 2011

three years ago today Wesley "officially" became our son - my how things have changed

Damon and I were just talking at dinner about how much has changed in the last three years. I think pictures can tell the story better than I can.

And don't tell my husband he looks younger, he'll be offended. Not that I found that out the hard way or anything. His response: I was younger!!  

just makes me laugh

a man of many expressions

with Mommy (before you say it, I already know I look younger in this picture)

Court Day!! (also called day 31 in Ukraine)

Us after court (Yes, we were sweating a lot. It had to be in the 90s in the building, and Damon was wearing a suit. I had on a dress, but I get greasy easily :)

See...A LOT of sweat! (And yes, it was all the way up to his shoulder and down to his waist)

the court building

the courtroom (If I had been sure we wouldn't get in trouble, I would have gotten a picture inside the cell, but I was too scared)

the judge's seat. We sat at the table in front of her.

and Wesley now

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Matt Maher - "Turn Around"

Have you heard this new song by Matt Maher called "Turn Around"? I seriously cannot get enough of this song!! What do you think?

Monday, July 11, 2011

heaven and hell - conversations with a four year-old

So maybe this is normal or maybe it isn't, but we talk a lot about death, heaven and hell in our house. And by a lot I mean many conversations daily. We try to tailor the conversations to the understanding ability of a four year-old, which is difficult with this kid's questions. We also try to be biblical correct. I don't want to give him incorrect information, though it would be much easier than the research and remembering I've been doing! I also want to give him age-appropriate information, which can be difficult to gauge. Here's what we've said so far:
- once you go to heaven or hell, you stay there forever
- heaven is a wonderful nice place where you live with Jesus forever
- hell is a bad place (Wes also calls it dangerous) with fire and you are sad forever.
If you know of any good books or resources that might answer his questions, please leave a comment and let me know!!

This morning while driving (obviously it was me driving), Wesley started his daily question and answer session regarding heaven and hell...

Wes: Are there cars in heaven?
Me: I don't know. The Bible doesn't say, but I doubt it.
Wes: Are there cars in hell?
Me: I don't know. The Bible doesn't say, but I doubt it.

a few seconds later...
Wes: Do you wear clothes in heaven?
Me: I don't know, the Bible doesn't say. {are you noticing a pattern here?}
Wes: I hope not.
Me: Why?
Wes: I like being naked.

a few seconds after that...
Wes: Do you eat in heaven?
Me: I don't know, the Bible doesn't say.  
Wes: I'm pretty sure you have to eat in hell.
Me: Why?
Wes: Because its hell. {what else could I expect from the kid who HATES to eat?}
Me: (laughing) Okay...
Wes: (in a serious tone) It's not funny.
Me: Maybe a little?
Wes: (an even more serious tone) No, it's not.
Me: (still snickering in the front seat)
Wes: Still not funny, Mommy.

Silly, silly boy...

Saturday, July 9, 2011

soccer ends, Uncle Scott visits

Completely unrelated to anything, but "Big Brother" started this week!! I didn't start watching this show until about tow years ago, but I'm hooked now. Are people that crazy in "real" life?! Surely not.

Wesley's finished his first (and probably his last) soccer season. Maybe its just his age, but he really wasn't interested in kicking the ball, chasing the ball, passing the ball, scoring a goal. In his defense though, he did score a goal on his own team with another player. Don't think I didn't cheer too! I figure he can learn the basics later, or not.

Wesley with his Doda, Pawpaw, and Uncle Scott

Wesley and Uncle Scott (look how much Wes has grown!) The first picture was taken the weekend after we came home from Ukraine.

more fun with Uncle Scott

I'm getting all the vacation pictures ready to post, so get ready!!

Monday, July 4, 2011

updates willl be coming- I promise!

So many updates will be coming soon! I had trouble getting into my account for the last week, but we're good to go now.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Pediasure to the rescue

Thank you so much for the encouraging emails and comments I received after my last post. For obvious reasons I was nervous to put myself out there, but I am so glad I did.

We haven't gotten into Wesley's surgeon yet, but we did make the choice to give Wesley Pediasure. Back when Wes had a g-tube, he was given five-six cans of Pediasure each day, so we're using it now to supplement his oral feedings. With him getting the additional nutrition each day, I am stressing less about how much and how often he eats. It hasn't changed his desire to eat, but it absolutely helps me mentally. Damon went to a golf tournament today, so Wes and I went to the pool. I just took Pediasure for him to drink, then we didn't have the typical hot, tired, pool-time fight where he refused to eat and I threatened to take him home if he didn't. We had a meal when we got home, but the drink was enough to keep his blood sugar stable when he was swimming.

I have to be honest, I preferred it when insurance paid for the Pediasure, but thankfully we don't need nearly as much as we used to! And hopefully we won't need it for nearly as long.

I'll post some fun swimming pictures soon!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

the hard truth about our "non-eater"

I don't talk about this much, but Damon and I are really struggling with Wesley's eating (or lack thereof). I'm not sure how to explain the stress (serious understatement) we feel to someone to who hasn't experienced it with their own child. It's even hard for me to comprehend (and I live it every day) because I love eating and the whole experience of eating! It baffles me to try to imagine not enjoying food or the time spent eating with friends and family.

I find myself struggling to enjoy spending time with him due to the thought of a future battle to make him eat or the stress lingering from a past battle. It sounds crazy to type, but in all reality, his eating will often consume my thoughts. But at the same time, I'm numb to it. It doesn't phase me when Wesley makes the most horrible gagging sound at a restaurant, even if it's loud enough to hear three tables over (and yes, others look at you like you are a horrible parent for letting your child choke like that when you don't freak out).

If you do a google search on "a child who refuses to eat," here's the advice you get "wait until he gets hungry enough to eat. Children won't starve themselves." Um, yes they will. We aren't dealing with a picky child in terms of what foods he likes or doesn't like. In all honesty, there aren't many foods that Wes dislikes. I realize how strange that sounds because I'm talking about a child who doesn't eat. I'm not sure his dislike stems from the food so much, but more the act of eating the food. We have tried to make dinner time fun and enjoyable, but somehow it always comes down to us putting the food in his mouth or telling him he can't get up until his food is gone. No longer fun or enjoyable for any of us.

Damon and I have been talking, and we think he might need to go back to feeding therapy. I used to take him once a week, but it was horrible. He would show off and throw food and just misbehave in ANY way possible. I have to say, those were some of the longest hours of my life. I would have difficulty driving home because I was sobbing so hard.

At this point in our eating adventures, I am inclined to think that there must be something physically wrong with Wes that makes eating difficult. My guess is that it is something called dysphagia (because online reasearch has made me a doctor). The basic definition would be that he can't swallow effectively because he can't control the food with his mouth or tongue. It's also possible that his esophagus has narrowed in the area where his EA repair is. All past swallow studies haven't shown narrowing, but at the same time it hasn't been easy to get him to eat and sit still so the doctors could watch the barium go down his throat on an x-ray.

So the plan is to get an appointment with his surgeon as soon as possible and ask him to get us started on the process to taking care of these eating issues once and for all. We would really like to get this taken care of before we bring home his sister (which is taking longer than I had hoped, of course). Please pray for all of us during this time...and especially at dinner time.

Sorry this post is such a downer...I promise to write a happy one next time :)

Thursday, May 26, 2011

how time flies

How does the time get away like it does? Here in Ohio it has pretty much been raining for 40 days and 40 nights...not really, but it is beginning to feel like that. Wesley desperately wants to play outside (Damon and I also want him to), but it is going to take a long time for our back yard to dry out! I keep trying to put off the drainage issues in our backyard (so far I've stalled Damon for two years), but when it rains at more than a sprinkle, I'm reminded of why we need to deal with the issue. Somehow ignoring it isn't making the issue go away. Who would've guessed that? (I can already see Damon smirking at this paragraph...)

My ankle is feeling MUCH better! I am working out again, but so far, I haven't been running. The orthopedic surgeon I went to stated that I should bike for a while before getting into running again. I signed up to run the the Air Force Half Marathon in September though, so pretty soon I'll have to take the plunge and get running again. Turns out that I had five stress fractures in my heel and all the ligaments were severely inflamed. NO idea how  I did that much damage just running on an indoor track, so I'm not sure that I could prevent future damage. Except maybe for me not to run anymore...we'll consider after the half marathon.

We're currently still waiting with the adoption...feels like the waiting never ends. We got an email today from our agency stating that accreditation for agencies has been delayed due to political elections. No idea how long this will hold up adoptions in Moldova, but I jsut have to remember that it will all happen in God's time. The current delays aren't a surprise to him and they don't mess up our adoption plans (even though it can feel like that to us). I remember how depressed I was when some political upheaval in Ukraine delayed our adoption about 10 months from when we thought we would travel. I felt like everything was messed up and it wouldn't work out, but what do you know...our son just became available for adoption the day we saw his picture. Nothing was messed up at all.

Damon's boss graciously gave us his personal tickets to a Cincinnati Red's game in April, so Wesley got to attend his first real baseball game.  

Want Mom and Dad to get you a baseball at the baseball game? Nope, I'll take a stuffed dog thanks.

I think the game overwhelmed him a bit because there was so much to watch and see. When a Reds player hit a home run, they let off fireworks. After that, Wesley kept asking us when they would do it again. It didn't happen though.

Doda and Pawpaw got Wesley his first pair of binoculars in his Easter basket, and boy was he excited! He wears those things around his neck pretty much every day.

looking through his Easter eggs and gathering all the money (he doesn't like candy, so the eggs had money in them. Sure wish I'd caught onto that racket when I was younger.Naw...I loved candy too much!)

here's a wreath I made out of book pages  (after the cast came off my ankle, I did everything domestic I could think of)

Wesley preferred eating the peanut shell versus the peanut at Five Guys Burgers and Fries. We had to stop him thought because it was just too gross.

with Doda and Pawpaw for Pawpaw's birthday (notice how Dad and Wes have the same serious facial expression)

Wesley's first soccer practice

playing goalie in his first game

Wesley's lack of fear worked out pretty well when he was in the goal (it didn't seem to phase him that 4-5 year-olds were kicking toward his face)  

a traditional soccer pose (he sure does love his mom taking so many pictures)  

"reading" the program to his dog after the Antioch Shrine Circus was in Dayton. This was Wesley's first circus, and he just couldn't get enough of the animals. The acrobats and such didn't interest him much, but as soon as he spotted an animal he got excited.

(Staci side note: obviously I haven't been to a circus since I was much younger, I didn't realize how cruel they can be to the animals! The tigers above kept snarling at the trainer and it hurt me to watch. So if Wesley never wants to go to a circus again, it's fine by me!)

Damon and I had a night out, and we went to downtown Cincinnati and had dinner in the hood at Terry's Turf Club. From the outside this place looked like an antique yard sale gone bad and inside was lit by neon lights. The burgers were HUGE and greasy. Everyone raves about this place, but personally it was too greasy for me. I loved the atmosphere though! We had to wait about an hour to sit in a cramped restaurant at a table with two people we'd never met, but it was a fun date night.

LM&M Railroad in Lebanon had a few weekends where you could ride the train and visit with Curious George. Due to the fact that George is #1 in this house (or at least tied with WordWorld), we had to go. Unfortunately there isn't a picture with the "Man with the Yellow Hat" (George's owner)...when I pointed out the "Man," Wesley's response was "that isn't a man, it's a girl!" Sure enough, the "Man with the Yellow Hat" was actually a woman, so we didn't take a picture for fear of confusing an easily confused kid. I have to say though that I am proud of Wes - I remember that for a long time I was concerned that Wes would never be able to tell the difference between a man and a woman!

I know I have more to say, but it's almost Friday at this point and my brain is fried...

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