December 31, 2012

Last Post

Here it is, the last day of 2012 and I haven't posted since March!  I think it is time to print the blog to a book for my Princess and say goodbye . . . for now.  But stay tuned.  I'm doing a lot of praying.  Janissa is begging me for a little sister, so God Willing, there may be a Mona Plus Two blog in the near future.  Please join us in prayer that the Lords Will Be Done.  We wish all of you a blessed 2013!!

March 14, 2012

Party Animal

With Janissa feeling better, we attended two birthday parties on March 3.  We literally partied from 1 in the afternoon until 8 at night!  Probably not a great idea so soon after her surgery, but it did make for a nice relaxing Sunday.

Mommy's adorable girl-pirate


Swinging at the pirate pinata

Eli, the birthday pirate

Janissa and Melat

Gathering for the treasure hunt

The Cutest Pirate Ever!!

Dancing up a storm at Elizabeth's party

More dancing (she loved Shakira's Waka Waka)

I couldn't get her to stop dancing

I'm sure it was too much partying too soon, but she was having so much fun.  Two pinata's in the same day - what a lucky girl.  We have enough candy to last two years! 

Janissa continues to amaze me with her strength, compassion and inner beauty.  She is a very special little girl.

February 26, 2012

Janissa's Surgery

On Friday, February 24, Janissa underwent surgery to fix her ears.  Her hearing had become increasingly worse.  I was having to repeat myself constantly and she was always asking, "What did you say, Mommy?"  After three rounds of antibiotics and an ear infection that would not go away, her doctor finally referred us to an ENT specialist.  Two minutes into the appointment he said, "I hate to say this so soon, but she needs to have surgery."  So it was scheduled for the 24th of February.

My little girl was so good!  She did everything the nurses asked of her and she was so brave.  Here are a few photo's in pre-op.

There were four little gowns on the bed and she got to pick which one she wanted. 
She picked the soft blue one.  She wasn't quite sure of what was going on.  I think she thought we were just going to the doctor's office for a regular visit.

 She liked the booties and the bracelet with her name on it.

 Thank God for portable DVD players.  All the nurses stopped by to see what she was watching.  That's a thermometer on her forehead.

They gave her some medicine to make her groggy, so she really wasn't aware that they had wheeled her away with out me.  My parents were in the waiting room when I went out.  It was a welcome distraction for me.  It seemed like only a few minutes had passed when the doctor came out to tell me it went well.  He said her tonsils and adenoids were huge and the ears were really bad.  He said I would notice an immediate improvement.  Shortly after that the nurse came to get me.  She said Janissa had come to and was crying for me.  When I went into the recovery room a nurse was hugging her.  They had me sit in a rocking chair and they handed her to me.  It was so strange, I was holding her and telling her I was there but she didn't recognize me.  She was pushing me away and trying to get out of my lap while she was crying and and saying "I want my mama."  I was told this is normal for children coming out of anesthesia.  They don't know where they are, what has happened, and their vision is blurry and they can't see well.  I held her tight for 10 or 15 minutes while she cried and kicked.  She calmed down a bit and we put her back in the bed.  She slept for half an hour or so and then woke up.  When she saw her Nana she got a little smile on her face.  They made us wait an hour before we could take her home.
Coming out of the anesthesia in recovery

That afternoon and into the next morning were rough because she was in so much pain.  She just wanted me to hold her or sit next to her on the sofa while she watched her favorite movies.  Her Auntie Mimi and cousin Lisa came to visit and she perked up a little.  She cried in her sleep every time she swallowed and woke up in terrible pain.  It was so hard to get her drink anything.  She finally had some vanilla pudding.  Our friend Dana came on Saturday and was a godsend.  She not only got her to drink her juice, but got her to eat some more and take her pain medication.  Almost immediately she was her old self again.  Dana even stayed and gave her a bath while I rested for awhile.  Thank God for great friends!

This morning she woke up in great spirits.  She's eating her pudding, drinking apple juice and watching movies.  My parents will be here soon to stay with her while I go to church.  I will be working from home tomorrow so I can stay with her another day.  I have my Mom and two friends lined up to come during the rest of the week so I can go to work.

True to the doctors words, her hearing has drastically improved.  Not once have I had to repeat myself.  I can talk while the movies are on and she doesn't get mad because she can't hear (and the volume isn't nearly as loud!).  She had a great disposition before, but I think this will improve it even more.  She has lived with these problems since birth and has been sick more often then she has been well.  Life is going to be good for my sweet Janissa!

February 25, 2012

February 2012

 The month of February has been a lot of fun.  We celebrated Valentine's Day at The Great Park with our Adoptive Families Group.  Janissa had a lot of fun playing with Kwali, Joseph, Oliver and Taye.  It was too windy to go up in the big orange balloon, but we did get to ride the carousel.
Rock Climbing

Janissa and Joseph

Taye and Janissa

Janissa riding the carousel

The next day we celebrated Kwali's 4th Birthday at Bounce U.  Janissa jumped to her hearts desire and had so much fun with all the other kids, especially her pal Oliver!

Janissa in action

Look at that form!

Sliding with Oliver and Miss Elisa

Group Photo

Happy Birthday to Kwali

McDonald's play date with Kwali

Last week Janissa had her very first dental appointment.  She was such a good girl.  She has 20 beautiful and healthy teeth!  I've already been informed that Miss J is going to need braces.  As I've known all along, her finger sucking has caused some big problems.  

Open wide

Meeting Dr. Toner

1, 2 3 . . . 18, 19 20!

February 4, 2012

Fun Stuff

Earlier this month we got to spend time with some friends who were visiting from Washington.  We went to see Beauty and the Beast in 3D, had some great cupcakes beforehand, and then a wonderful dinner.  I sure wish we lived closer because Janissa just adores Clair.

Clair and Janissa

Sharing cupcakes

New movie in theaters soon

Yummy!  Cold popcorn
Janissa's first dinner dance.  She is dancing with Ben (Clair's cousin) with Rose on the left and Anna in the background

Yesterday we spent 11 hours at Disneyland!  Our very good friends, Tania and Sabah, were in town so we met up with them.  It was such a great day!  The weather was perfect and the lines were short.  Sabah and Janissa were at Le Toukoul together in Ethiopia and have had the opportunity to see each other on several occasions since then.  Tania and I would love it if they were friends forever!  We also met up with other friends, Lisa, Zaela, Christy and Eli for a few hours.  Char and Kwali, we missed you so much, but know we'll see you soon.
 Janissa "goofing" off

Sabah and Janissa on the Teacups

Janissa on the Carousel

Sabah and Tania

Janissa, Zaela and Sabah

Zaela, Sabah and Janissa waiting for the Tiki Room doors to open

Sabah, Tania and Janissa in line for the Rockets!
I had to add this photo from the Portland Zoo taken in Summer of 2010.  It's why we took the previous photo.  How they've grown!!!

Ready for take off

January 31 was the third anniversary of receiving my referral of Janissa.  That moment is etched in my memory forever.  This photo was taken by Jenna Zimmer when she was there picking up Addia. It is one of my favorites.