Welcome - ยินดีต้อนรับ

Hello all family and friends!

With great excitement, we started our adoption journey in August 2008. We are now first time parents through adoption of an 8-year-old son from Thailand. We have chosen to build our family through the adoption of a son from Thailand because this is where we feel God is leading us right now.

It took 1 year and 9 months to bring Ray home and it was totally worth it!

We appreciate all of your love and support. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!
Ann & Bryan

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Six Weeks Home

Wow!  Is it really the end of June already?!?  Time sure does fly!

Ray had fun the week of June 14th going to Vacation Bible School (which he called Cross School) learning about God's word and making new friends.  He enjoyed singing some songs for us at home that he learned but then froze on stage when the children sang for the World Mission Festival on Sunday.  He did do some of the hand gestures for the last song so he must have just been warming up when they were finished. Oh, well...he did enjoy the food from around the world...especially the sushi from Japan and fruit from Thailand!  And Daddy was beaming with pride as he shared in the love of God with his son on Father's Day.  Ray bought Daddy a new helmet for riding bicycle with him and we all enjoyed "Toy Story 3" at the movie theater.

The next week he started summer school at the public school.  He was shy and nervous the first day but the next morning he woke up an hour and a half before we needed to leave and was ready to go to school "fast"!  He loves the word fast thanks to Aunt Sara teaching him how fast she can go in the convertible!  Being in a classroom has helped his English develop and introduced him to how schools are organized in America.  He has also made some more new friends which we are hoping will help him feel more comfortable in September when he starts full time school.

Yesterday Ray decided he was ready to take the training wheels off of his bike and ride like a big boy...he is doing great!  This weekend will be exciting since Ray will be introduced to lots more extended family and close friends all arriving for Independence Day celebrations.  We already know that he loves fireworks since we took him to see the ones in Ephraim for FyrBal Festival so he's super excited that we'll get two and maybe even three days of fireworks this weekend.

Tuesday, July 13th is our first of three post-placement visits.  It will be interesting to see how Ray responds to her questioning.  We are not too worried about it though...more curious as to what will be asked/expected.  Ray's test results came back from Children's Hospital showing very little to be overly concerned about (also nothing surprised us...reports from Thailand were very accurate).  In fact, most of his US-born cousins and friends have more allergies and ailments than he does!

Our summer calendar is full of fun and learning.  Summer school ends July 15th.  Hopefully we'll make it to see our nephew's baseball game on July 17th in Burlington.  If schedules work out, we may visit with another adoptive family on July 19th to meet Ray's friend who was adopted from the TRC a year or two ago.  We will have a re-affirmation celebration of Ray's baptism in church on July 25th.  The last soccer game of the summer is on July 27th.  Daddy and Ray will check out Packer Stadium and Hall of Fame on July 29th.  Ray, Mommy, Grandpa and Nana Jeanne plan to visit EAA Airventure in Oshkosh on August 1st.  We're thinking he might like swimming lessons from August 2nd through 13th.  A group of friends will be meeting at Bay Beach in Green Bay on August 8th for fun park adventures.  Ray's got a gift card he can't wait to use to see a musical at American Folklore Theatre sometime in August.  And of course there are many new friends and cousins to have play dates with before the summer is over.  Phew!

How is his English coming along?  This is the most common question asked of us.  Although it is important, it is not the focus of everything we do on a daily basis.  (Yes; we do have reading time and alphabet time each day.)  Attachment and bonding are top priority at the moment.  Without these things, learning can never really happen properly. This sentiment gets grounded into every adoptive parent in required pre-adoption educational classes and books but you really cannot grasp the true importance until the child is in your home.  We find ourselves trying to get close to him each day to let him know he is loved unconditionally, that he is safe, and that this is his forever family.  Recently, Ray has decided to open up and share his past with us by telling us stories from events at the orphanage or his Thailand school.  It is a little hard to understand since it is told in broken English and lots of hand gestures and noises but most of it comes through.  We feel honored that he is comfortable enough already to begin telling us his life story.  This is a milestone that far outweighs language.  He is connecting with us emotionally and that's exciting progress!


Ellie said...

It's great to read about Ray's adjustment. Glad to hear things are going well. Sounds like you've managed to do quite a few things in six weeks!!! Enjoy the rest of your summer!!

I'm trying to remember how old Ray is... I forgot that he's from TRC. I'm sure we've discussed this before, but I have forgotten. Our Jacob is from TRC... adopted just before he turned 5. He's now 10.


Jay and Chandra and Penny Regan said...

So glad to hear about the great progress that your son is making in just the first month. Praying for all of you through the big changes. So thankful for your newest family member! May he just continue to grow and blossom under your care!

Why are we adopting internationally and not domestically?
While we think adopting domestically is extremely important, our hearts are drawn to the waiting children in other countries. Some of our closest friends and relatives have adopted, are adopted themselves, or are planning to adopt internationally. This has been a wonderful experience for them, as I am confident our adoption will be for us.

Why are we adopting from Thailand?
The number one reason is simply...that's where our son is living right now. Also, the Thai people are extremely laid back and friendly and the adoption process is very straight forward in Thailand and has been around for decades so there should be no surprises or corruption. After researching our other options, the requirements to adopt from Thailand fit our requirements. If we decide to adopt again, we will reevaluate the different countries and domestic programs.

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