Woo Hoo…Happy New Year! From our family to yours we wish you a very blessed 2013!
That’s right…it is only 100 hours until the Olympics!
So as you all know I am just beaming with pride for my little super star swimmer. So yesterday when we were at the pool Eric shot a bunch of movies of her swimming. Once we got home we got to talking about the Olympics because we are all super pumped around here of the big event coming up! I got to giggling about how funny it would be to make a movie of her swimming with the Olympic song playing in the back. So of course I had to make it…
It cracks me up each time we watch it (and you know Zoey has watched it about a million times) how dramatic the music makes her swimming.
So enjoy my little Olympian!
What an exciting start to this week!!! My sister Kendall finally had her sweet baby girl…Amelia Blake Ansley. You can read more about her arrival and see her slide show here.
So this week we spent most of our nights at the hospital hanging out with Blake, Kendall, and Tim. Eric was out of town at Comic Con for the first part of the week but he made it home Friday night so he could go up to the hospital to see her too!
We also had a great weekend! On Saturday Zoey and I got up early to go meet Liz and Hannah at iJump. The girls (and us) had a great time jumping around on all of the inflatables. After our play session we decided to go and eat lunch at Urban Cookhouse then had a SUPER yummy dessert at Steel City Pops. It was a great day and both me and Zoey took a long nap once home!
On Sunday Zoey and I got up early and headed on over to the pool. She has really been showing interest in swimming without her floaties. Well I should say she has REALLY been showing disinterest in wearing the floaties! So I figured I would try to teach her to swim and after about an hour my baby girl was swimming!!! She swims underwater and comes up for breaths but it is SUPER impressive. I had my first “really proud mom moment”. It was this excitement and just pride beaming from the inside for her accomplishment!! She was extra proud of herself too because others at the pool kept coming up and telling her good job! ☺
The remainder of our week we were back being busy at work, visiting the hospital, and just our normal nightly routines.
I hope all of you had a good week too! ☺
My sister Kendall finally had her sweet baby girl…Amelia Blake Ansley. They are calling her Blake but I really want to call her Mills. Right now I am respecting their wishes but don’t worry my sweet girl I will call you Mills soon!
So after 9.5 months of waiting she found out on Wednesday that she would be having a C-Section on Thursday morning due to the baby being breached. I was SUPER excited but the only drawback was me starting my new job and not getting to take off. But since it was a scheduled C-Section then we at least knew what time. She was scheduled for 8:00 am and thought we would get to see the baby around 10:30 and she was just about right. So I made my work calls that morning then ran over just in time for the baby reveal to the family. And since I had to leave right at 11:00 all the family members said I could hold her first…what a sacrifice (especially for the grandmothers) but it was super special to me!
Now for those of you who don’t know my sister she is one tough woman…like really tough. She wanted an all-natural child birth but since she had to have a C-section she asked the doctor how to make it as natural as possible. They told her she could do an epidural only and no morphine so she said yes. I was like “You are a crazy lady! One thing to go no meds when you are doing it the way God intended but another when you are literally being sliced open!” but like I said before she is super tough and she did GREAT! I mean she was up and dancing in the hospital just days later with Zoey and the only thing she had taken since getting out of surgery was motrin! I am super, super impressed with her and think she really deserves a standing ovation for her bravery and determination!
Ok so back to the baby…she is SUPER cute and tiny and guess what?!? Not only is Zoey and the baby’s birthday only 4 days off from being the same day but Baby Blake was only 0.4 oz off from Zoey’s birth weight and the same length as her! It was so cool for me and Eric to see exactly how tiny Zoey was when she was born! And if she looked anything like Blake she was itty bitty then!! I left the hospital so in awe of how we are created and how our bodies work. I mean I “know” we all grow but to think Zoey just 2 years ago was that small and is now the size she is pretty impressive if you sit there and really think about! Us as humans are so cool!
We are so excited to have Blake as a part of our family. Zoey loves her already. She was cute “giving her massages” as Tim liked to call it when she was holding her. I am really excited about our girls being so close in age and growing up together. If they are anything like me and Kendall together we are in trouble! : ) I am envisioning these gymnastic tournaments in Honey and Granddaddy’s backyard…
Below is a slide show I made for Kendall, Tim and Black to document Blake’s Birthday!
One year ago today life as Eric and I knew it changed forever all with one special little phone call…The second best phone call I have ever received letting us know we had a daughter! Well it could be first…I don’t know both the referral call and travel call were pretty amazing!
One year ago today Eric and I became parents. Before we were just two people waiting but then once we saw her sweet, chubby little face in a split second I was a mom and eric was a dad. And for the next couple of months we became obsessed with our daughter so far, far away but so instantly close in our hearts. We received a two page sheet of information and 25 pictures. We memorized every single little thing she was doing in each and every image. It was a crazy life changing day and hard to believe it has been one entire year since that momentous experience.
Before I started this post and went back and read my post from this day last year and it made me start boo hoo crying. (You can read last years post by clicking here.) One year later and home with this precious little girl I can honestly say I am STILL in shock. Complete overwhelmingly shock that all of this really happened and this cute little one is mine for forever! There is not a day that has gone by that I have not looked at her and wondered how in the world we got so lucky to be chosen to raise her and be her family for forever. God sure knew what he was doing matching us together and I am completely overwhelmed with this sense of gratitude daily for her!
Just this past weekend it was just Zoey and me eating at Panera Bread and I looked over at her devouring this baguette that was half the size of her and she gave me this sneaky little smile and I lost it…like completely broke down like a crazy lady right there in the middle of the restaurant. How in the world did I get so blessed?!?!?!?
All I can say is that I am so very thankful for that one phone call that rocked my world forever!
I leave you with this quote one of my adoptive mom friends put on facebook today that seemed so fitting:
“Adoption is a miracle packaged up in a human body, that lets you see the heart of God.” – Karen W.
A couple of weeks ago I mentioned in our Christmas post that we got another surprise on Christmas that I would have to tell later. The big surprise was that my sister Kendall told us on Christmas that she was pregnant! And I can’t believe that I forgot to come back and tell all of you once Kendall was telling people other than family. But I am so excited that Zoey will soon have another cousin to play with. And I have to give big props to my sister for being so kind and considerate to Zoey too. She wanted Zoey to have the attention for her first Christmas since she is the first grandchild on my side of the family so Kendall didn’t mention a word of this through three christmas parties and patiently waited for Zoey to VERY SLOWLY open up all of her gifts and the day was winding to a close before she gave a present to my parents of her sonogram. So, so sweet of Kendall and I will be forever grateful to her for doing this. I meant the world to me.
So now let me be honest about what went through my head when I was finding this out…
#1: We said we were not doing gifts to my parents for Christmas so when Kendall said I have a present for them I was MAD! I was like “Of course she just HAD to change the plans and make us all look like kids who don’t care!”
#2: They opened the gift and my parents flipped out…like really flipped out. I of course was not expecting the pregnancy at all so when they were ecstatic I got even more mad and was like “They must have gotten them plane tickets somewhere pretty amazing for them to be this happy!”
#3: I finally figured it out after my mom held up the sonogram picture and I was no longer mad at Kendall! Ha!
I am very happy for Kendall and Tim and can’t wait to meet the sweetest new addition this July. Yep that is right new baby will share the same birthday month as Zoey. Kendall also apologized to me for them having the same birthday month (you know how much I like celebrating birthday’s all month!) I of course was totally fine with it and laughed when I noticed how stressed out she was about this!
And actually I have been fine with all the news of her having a baby. With me not having any biological kids I always wondered what I would think when my younger and only sister got pregnant. For those of you who are ladies and have sisters you know what it is like when it is your sister. Things are different than just your friend or neighbor getting pregnant. I of course thought that it would be a couple of years from now that she would be announcing this and always thought I would process that later but maybe having it catch me off guard was what I needed. Because honestly I am at 100% peace with never having any biological kids. I know that adopting was what God had planned for my life and I LOVE it! It is perfect for me and I have never been at such peace as the day we stopped trying and started the adoption process. I was ecstatic! We always knew we wanted to grow our family with adoption and the only reason we tried to biologically have kids first was unfortunately due to the cost of adoption but God knew what he was doing! He had one sweet little asian princess waiting for us across the world. Kendall getting pregnant has led to a lot of you to question me on things like if we will try again and honestly I do not think so. Neither Eric nor I feel the need to have a bio kid. We feel like our other children will be out there in the world waiting on us like Zoey. I am telling you once you adopt you get hooked because all your fears of adoption vanish in a second and all you see is this incredible amount of love you have for YOUR child…it is crazy! But just to clarify right now we are perfectly content with one child and do not plan on adopting again tomorrow or anything but whether bio or adopted who knows what God has in store for our family down the road! FYI- I am seeing a farmhouse on lots of land with TONS of adopted kids from all around the world all snuggled up in my super king size bed but let’s just say that is not quite Eric’s vision right now! Ha! So we will see…
So there you go…I know many of you have kind of hinted around those two questions so I thought I would go ahead and answer them for you. But enough about me…let’s get back to this baby! So on Friday we get to find out if she is having a girl or a boy and I can not wait to know! I am thinking girl! So we will see if I am right or not soon enough! But one thing I do know for sure is boy or girl that little nugget is going to be spoiled rotten by his/her Aunt Lauren!
My week started out by being one of those days that I love. It was my office day so we stayed in all day. I got lots of work done plus I didn’t leave the house at all…like not one bit to go to the mailbox or anything. That is so rare around here. We go, go, go and with my job I am typically driving 6 hours a day so sometimes it is nice just to chill at home. What I didn’t do is snap one picture! Which a goal of mine is to take a picture every day this year but oh well…I am obviously not short on pics.
Speaking of not being short on pictures on Friday when I went to pick Zoey up from school her teacher asked “Do you take a lot of pictures of Zoey?” I wanted to be like…”If you only knew…I took over 100 of her in a bandaid” or “We had to move pictures to the desktop because I used all the memory on my laptop with pictures!” But I didn’t want them to know how CRAZY I am so I settled with a yes and she began to tell me that she can tell because every time they get the camera out Zoey knows exactly what is going on and poses for the camera…Yep! That’s my girl!
After my work and Zoey’s school on Friday I worked the foster mom book we will be sending her. We did a shutterfly book of pics and I love it. I can’t wait to send it to her! Once home we had dinner, baths, and played downstairs a bit then put Zoey to bed so Eric’s parents could come over while Eric and I went to see a late night move. We LOVE having family nearby!!! We both ended up loving Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close with Sandra Bullock. I would recommend this movie for sure. The movie was long so we did not get home until 1:30 am. Upon getting home we found that Zoey had woken up around 12:30 and had not fallen back asleep. So after Gary and Susan left we tried getting Zoey back down too but she would not fall asleep. She kept baby signing hungry so we got back up and cooked pancakes, eggs, and let her have a piece of pizza…by 3:00 am we were honestly willing to give her anything to make her go to sleep. But she didn’t want to…not at all! It was just one of those nights! But I am trying to remember that all of this will pass and she will be a grown teenager one day sleeping all the time and I will long for the day when she wanted to stay up all night playing with me so I tried to enjoy it and that we did. We had a GREAT time just messing around with her. She did eventually go to sleep around 4:00 am and I thought for sure she would let us sleep in but NO she was wide awake at 7:00 am! Hello…you are not a newborn Zoey! That is one BIG advantage to adopting…I am supposed to have skipped the newborn stage! Let’s just say I wanted to sleep so I let her play in the bed and watch tv but we were not getting up! So we read books, did puzzles, and played with dolls until 9:30 when she fell back asleep. So back to bed Eric and I went too. We ended up sleeping till 11:30. The last time we slept that late was the first time Zoey slept in the week we got back from Korea and we were all so jet-lagged. Not sure what was up with her but I was glad she finally let this mommy and daddy have some sleep.
After sleeping all morning the Bush family came over to watch the Missouri basketball game. Zoey was all dressed up in her black and gold for the game. We had a great time playing with all the cousins too! School has been great for Zoey in some aspects but this weekend I saw a major drawback to school. She learned violence! Her cousin Mae had a toy she wanted and she was so nasty with her…just pinching and hitting. I have NEVER seen her do something like this! So it was off to her “thinking place” aka timeout with me she went. Not just once but 5 times! I want to nip this problem in the bud fast!
After the game I had my hair appointment at our neighborhood salon. It was the first time for me to get a color and cut since before my baby-shower which was 7 months ago! I kept putting it off and didn’t want to spend the money but when Eric asked if I was planning on being brown on top with blonde tips I decided it was probably time to go…especially since he has NEVER noticed anything about my hair before. So guess what…I got rid of all my highlights and went brown. I am really not sure if I like it or not but we will live with it a while and see.
So what did I take for my reading material…a discipline book on adopted children of course! Ha! She is certainly approaching 2 and trying to assert her independence in SO many ways. This is when the hard part of being a parent kicks in. I want to raise a Godly, well mannered, respectful child but how?!?!?! Especially without hurting our attachment progress. I have read lots of book and have started putting several tips into practice and have been praying on what is right for our family. But one thing I do have going is that both Eric and I are on the same page. We have really tried to never undermine each other and always have each other’s back even if we don’t agree. We discuss later…and not around Zoey. So I know this is part of life but somedays she just wants to make me pull my hair out! I love the fact that she is little miss independent and strong willed but I hate it too!
After my spa appointment Eric and Zoey met me up at there to eat at the clubhouse for dinner and then we went swimming in the indoor pool! You see if you get any spa service which includes a haircut you get access to the pool for the day. Zoey LOVED swimming around and I was happy we were tiring her out good so she would be sure to sleep that night! Which she did…praise the Lord!
Sunday we woke up and Zoey and I headed out to the botanical gardens to get pictures of her in her Hanbok for Lunar New Year! You can see more about Lunar New Year here: You Tube
We were going to meet up with some friends but they were out of town so on the way to the gardens I called my mom and dad and they were just leaving church so ended up meeting us out there. I was sure it was going to rain on us but fortunately we got LOTS of pictures that I just love before the rain started. Zoey looked so beautiful in the hanbok her foster family gave her. She wore it on her birthday too but she was crawling then and with her walking now it gave so much more life to the outfit. I just loved getting to see my asian princess play in the gardens with her super cute look.
Since I knew I would be out of town for work on Monday we decided to celebrate Lunar New Year on Sunday instead. So I cooked a Korean meal (no one ate it…not even Zoey) and also made a dragon cake! I found the instructions online and it was surprisingly super easy! And of course Zoey ate that! I still have tons left over if any of you locals want to come and get you a piece! To celebrate we listened to K-pop on pandora. Which is Korean Pop music if you are not aware. Zoey and I LOVE it and she can get down to it for sure. We made a shaker out of a paper towel ring and let her shake and dance the night away…she was too cute! I know we did not do all the traditions that a family would typically do in Korea but we are trying our best to incorporate the Korean culture as best as we can for her. I believe as she gets older we will be able to do more and more too.
Sunday night all the news stations were warning of inclement weather. We went to bed but before I dozed off I got “tornado ready” which means I packed a back with a change of clothes for all of us and diapers and bottle stuff. Got Zoey’s helmet in the house. Put shoes down in our tornado hole, etc. You may think I am crazy and I very well may be BUT after April 27th and the devastating tornados we had here in Alabama (Which you can read more about here.) I am not taking any chances and the weather men were all saying it was going to be a perfect storm type night so to be ready and ready I was! Unfortunately the weather men were right and the tornado’s came. Fortunately we were spared! It missed our house entirely…but we did have lots of lightening. But my grandparents were not so lucky. The tornado went right down their street. It did a good bit of damage to their house but did not level it completely like it did to several of their neighbors. Their neighborhood will forever be changed and some people ended up loosing their lives that night too. It is just so sad…it really is! Now that Zoey is here and we do not have a basement I am seriously wanting a storm shelter put in…oh if only we could afford it but like I am telling Eric…how can we afford not to! We will see who wins this one!
Monday morning we got up at 3:00 am with the storm sirens going off. I had to get up by 4:00 anyway to get ready for work so I just stayed up watching the news. After I was ready Eric and I both looked at the radar and saw a break in the storms and thought I could make it to south alabama ok so at 5:15 am I hopped in the car and took off for my 9:00 am meeting down south. About an hour into my drive the clouds started looking horrible…like really, really dark and scary and then the weather man broke into the radio and said a tornado had formed in the exact location I was and was about to cross the interstate I was driving on. I called Eric panicking…like panicking BIG TIME! I looked like I was having a seizure from shaking so bad. My entire body was shaking and I could barely push the petal because of the tremors my foot was having and then the hail came and then the crazy lightening. I was the only idiot on the road too! Eric was watching my location on the phone and watching the radar and said he thought it was right behind me so to keep driving as fast as I safely could so that is what I did. Not sure if it was the best decision but I am still alive so I guess it was. I never saw the tornado or anything but I was certainly in the same cloud as that tornado. I am not one to be scared of storms…at all! I honestly thought about being a storm chaser at one point in my life because I like storms so much and if you remember from this post here I was in something similar a while back and it didn’t really phase me. But now things are different…they really are since Zoey is around. All I kept thinking about was the loss that Zoey has already had to go through and that she did not deserve to loss another mother because of a stupid storm. It was a poor decision on my end and I should have NEVER left in that weather. No amount of money is worth Zoey not growing up with me around so I learned my lesson to say the least and am VERY grateful to God for protecting me from my stupid mistake. So Monday ended up being a crazy day especially watching all the footage from the mornings devastation around the state again but everyone in my extended family is ok so I am so thankful!
And just like every day after a big storm on Tuesday we woke up to a beautiful warm day! It was so gorgeous and on days like that I do enjoy my job of driving around all day visiting schools. Unfortunately a lot of schools are still closed due to storm damage but I went up north calling on schools that were not affected by Monday’s tornados. After work I got the honor of babysitting one of my neighbors sweet little boys. I had a great time hanging out with him while his mommy got a haircut too! It was also a day of recovery for my grandparents. They have said the outpouring of donations of food, water, cleaning supplies, and people to help their neighborhood has been tremendous. You can tell she feels very loved by everyone helping. They will need new windows, garage doors, roof, and the scariest part is the structural damage they are finding so who knows what else they will need to do but at least they are alive.
Well everything was doing good on Wednesday too and I was on the phone with my grandmother while driving around for my work when she said “Curt..are you ok?” “Are you ok?” and then I heard my granddad say he needed to go to the hospital. She quickly said got to go and that was it…I was freaking out and called my mom quickly. After he went up to the hospital to get his chest pains looked at (he did just witness a tornado so a heart attack is not out of the question) they ended up saying he just pulled a muscle real bad doing clean up around the house…another Praise the Lord! What a week it has been for sure!
But some good news for Wednesday was that Zoey’s birth certificate came in the mail. WooHoo! It says mother “Lauren Kristen Baker Bush’ and father “Eric Michael Bush” music to my ears…well words to my eyes or however you say that? You get the point…I am ecstatic for that little piece of paper!
Dana ended up coming over Wednesday night with Nothing but Noodles…you can’t beat a friend who delivers dinner just because! She got to play with Zoey a bit and then we watched a movie after Z went to sleep. Another good way to wrap up this week!
So thankfully Zoey and I survived Eric being gone. The first night was ROUGH! Poor Zoey stayed up all night calling DaDa. It was too sweet…but tiring. But after a long skype session the next day Zoey was back to her normal self and we made it. She was TOO happy waking up from her nap in the car to see Daddy driving. Thanks to all of you for your thoughts and prayers. We needed it for sure! Just keep the prayers coming because Eric will unfortunately be gone a lot over the next month.
So that leads us to what happened today…Zoey started school!!!! After weeks of thinking about it we decided to enroll Zoey in a school for a couple hours per week since she loves kids so much. She really, really enjoys playing with kids so when “THE” school we had been on a waiting list for since before we got the referral called and said a slot opened up we figured we would try it out. It will give her time to play with kids and Eric more time for work. We have quickly come to find out it is pretty hard to run a website with a one year old in your lap!
But you see for the past eight week Zoey has not left mine and Eric’s side. She has been with either of us at all times. We did go to two movies while Eric’s mom came and watched her but Zoey was already put to bed and sleeping so she didn’t really know. So at the meet the teacher day when the teacher said “How does she do with other sitters?” I said she never has. The teacher was like “I mean grandparents, aunts, etc?” Again I was like you will be the first. You should have seen her face. I know she was probably thinking crazy lady you think the first should be me!?!?! But we thought long and hard and we think having her left for the first time with lots of kids and fun things to do will be a lot easier for Zoey than having someone come over here why we leave her.
We prayed lots about this decision and after taking Zoey for a tour and she about had a come-a-part she loved it so much we decided to go for it. So after days of dread (on my part) this day arrived. I felt like I was like a little kid again. I was up ALL night with butterflies, woke up super early, got Zoey up and ready and cried all the way to the place. (Of course I didn’t let Zoey see me cry). By the time we got out of the car I was acting cheerful and kept telling her how it was a great place…which it is and how much fun she was going to have with her friends.
We walked into her classroom and sat her down at the table…the cool things was she set right next to a previous client of mines daughter. The two started babbling away and shared their cheese toast. Both Eric and I hung out in the room for for about 15 minutes stocking up her cubby, organizing her diapers, filling out last minute paperwork, etc. The entire time we were in there Zoey didn’t call for us at all. She was TOO entertained with the kids! So Eric and I told her bye and that we loved her. She just waved bye-bye and went right back to playing. So we left!
We stayed in the hall a while and peeked back in and every time she was FINE! I could not believe it. So we left…it was a VERY strange feeling. Driving home it felt so surreal and sad and proud of our little girl all at the same time. Once home we both went our separate ways for work. I was on the road today so that kept me pretty busy. Zoey’s teacher promised to call if Zoey cried for more than 20 minutes. So…when 11:30 rolled around and my phone rang I about lost my mind. It was her teacher calling to tell us Zoey had done great all morning but was tired and having a hard time going down for a nap. The teacher wanted a little longer to rock her so we agreed and baby girl went to sleep!
Once Zoey woke up she was in a good mood and they went to the activity room to play on the mats and other gymboree type activities and she did good there but when she came back to the room she fell apart again so I got one more phone call. By that point we were already SO proud of how good she had done. We were fully expecting to pick her up after just an hour. So we rushed out the door to get her. Once there she was not crying just rocking at taking her bottle. Her sweet smile and reach for me when going in the room was AMAZING! I was SO incredibly happy to have her back in my arms!
The teacher was so kind to laminate nine pictures from Zoey that day. We took it home with us along with her report card to show her Daddy. Once home Zoey kept looking and pointing at all the pictures from her day. Just smiling at all the kids in the pics. She looked very, very happy in the pics too! I know that she had a couple of hard moments but all in all I think it was a great day for her.
Once home is was some major reward time for Zoey. We gave her her favorite gummies one at a time after telling her how proud we were of her in each picture. Then we did lots of snuggling tonight…I mean hours taking it easy on the couch snuggling (she was VERY worn out from today) and fun long bath bonding time. We kept things really low key and tried our best to reassure her that mommy and daddy love her and will always come back for her.
So this leads to the hard part for me…when the is the entire “adopted issue” or “parenting issue” comes in my mind. I was warned that for the rest of our lives we will always wonder if she is acting certain ways because she is dealing with being adopted or because she is a typical child. And this scenario is for sure playing in my mind tonight. Did she feel abandoned? Did she worry that we were just like her time with her foster mom and was being passed along again? Or was this a typical parenting issue where Zoey was just sad to see mom and dad go but no hard adoption issues were even at play today? I guess only God knows. All I can really do is be the best parent I know to be and love her as much as humanly possibly and just continue to pray for her little heart!
So we will see how long it takes her to fully adjust to her school but we can already tell that she loved it with the kids.
But I must show you some pics we took as we were heading out the door this morning. Take a look at her feet. She is wearing SHOES! I have not wanted to put shoes on her yet because she looks so old with shoes on but school requires them so we have started practicing wearing shoes this weekend and she LOVES them. She points to them and actually WANTS to put them on. After looking at the pics you will see what a little heartbreaker I have…she is growing up SO fast!!!!
Today we celebrated Zoey’s first birthday with our family. We celebrated in typical Korean fashion (well kind of) by having her a Dol.
Here is some info from Wiki regarding the Korean Dol:
Dol or doljanchi is a Korean tradition that celebrates the birthday of a one-year-old baby. This ceremony blesses the child with a prosperous future and has taken on great significance in Korea. The birthday babies wear a hanbok and a traditional hat: a gulle for baby girls and a bokgeon.
In the past, the death rates for children were high and many children died before their first birthday, so it was an important milestone to the baby and parents. The whole village used to celebrate a baby’s first birthday, sharing foods and wishing for long life and fortune for the baby.
The highlight of the dol is a ritual where the child is placed in front of a table of foods and objects such as string, books, brushes, ink and money. The child is then urged to pick up an object from the table. It is believed the one selected will foretell the child’s future. For example, if the child picks up a brush or book, he is destined to be a scholar.
And celebrate we did. Zoey was all dressed up in her BEAUTIFUL hanbok that her foster mother gave her. The day we met Zoey she tried it on for us and LOVED getting in it. So this morning when I pulled it out of the closet for her to put on she got SO excited….it was too cute!
We did play the future guessing game too. And what did Zoey pick? The Pororo microphone to be “An Entertainer”! Of course we don’t really believe this will pick her future and I hope for her sake she decides to go a different route but for today I am guessing that was the most enticing! Zoey drew the name out of the winning cup and both my mom and Mam-ma one the bag of candy.
Another Korean 1st Birthday tradition is the photo board. I did start out by pasting her photos on a poster board but it was looking WAY too cheesy for me so I ended up decorating her pictures by stringing up some mats. I was very happy with the way this turned out. I set it up over the jars for guesses.
There is also another tradition of a blessing tree. So I spent time making these super cute trees but of course my mommy brain was in full force that day so I completely forgot to tell people to write down the blessings/prayers for Zoey and hang them on the tree! Oh well…at least they made for some cute decorations.
The decoration I was most proud of were these Dol Towers. They took FOREVER to make! So any of you mom’s that have not celebrated the birthday yet go ahead and start making them NOW! I completely understand why people pay good money for others to make them for them now.
For food we had fried rice and instead of the traditional Korean Rice Cakes which I had no idea how to make so I did my americanized version which was rice krispy treats as the dessert instead of birthday cake. I figured when else could you get away with no birthday cake. But we did get Zoey a cupcake so she would have something to get messy with. However she did not care to get too messy but did end up grabbing the candle before Eric even sat it down. Needless to say the birthday song stopped right in the middle and everyone gasped…Zoey cried but quickly recovered with not a bad burn at all.
We had a great time getting to hang out with our family and spend time just celebrating Zoey. It was so cool to see how comfortable Zoey felt even with all of the people there too! She also learned how to open up her gifts from her cousins. She was too funny with all the new toys. We just love our Birthday Girl so much and feel so blessed to have her in our family. We are also very grateful for all of our extended family that love her too. Both Eric and I left the birthday party with the biggest smile on our faces not because of the decorations, food, presents, or even cute Zo in her hanbok…What made us so happy was seeing how much our child is loved by our family. She is one of them 100% and they have welcomed her with huge loving and caring sweet arms and that right there is so priceless!