Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas 2009

Ok, so these were uploaded out of order, so you'll have to forgive the confusion. This photo was taken on Sunday, December 27th. We are going to try to take a family photo on Christmas each year. She was dressed up for church earlier in the day, but she went out to play in the snow, so we put her in jeans and sweatshirt. Anyway, this was the best of the bunch...cheesy smile and all.
We have a great picture from last year. Last year on Christmas, it was so cold the driveway iced over. We took the kids out and pulled them on sleds. We have this great picture of Daddy holding Grace. She is so bundled up you can only see her eyes. This year, I made sure we got a picture of me holding Grace in the snow as well. it was a great day, and Grace said "Having fun" while she was out playing. She had a blast!

Daddy holding Grace.

Grace was running through the snow and telling me she was having fun. She loves playing in the snow. The only thing that could have topped this is if the snow were good enough to make a snowman!

On Saturday, December 26 we went to my mom's house to celebrate Christmas. I loved that Christmas was on a Friday this year. Usually my husband has to work the day after Christmas, so this year was really nice because we got to spend the whole day with my mom instead of just an hour or so. We had a lot of fun-and argued about Cabbage Patch Kids!

Grace doesn't know Uncle Ray (my brother) that well, so I was really surprised when she let him hold her and read a book to her. Her cousin Raymond looks too!

Raymond and Grace. Since we don't see my brother and his family a lot, she doesn't know them very well. They'll just have to come up this way more often to see us!

Nanna reading a book to Grace.

Her little Christmas light necklace. The necklace lights up. You can't see it on the picture, though, because the flash cancels out the lights. She loved the necklace, though.

This was on Friday, Christmas Day. Her Aunt Sarah gave her Cinderella slippers for Christmas. I could never keep slippers on her feet, which is important because we have wood floors and down in the basement it's cold in the winter. This solved the problem! She loves her slippers!

Nana bought her a "My First Piggy Bank". The bank has coins that the pig counts as you put them in. It also sings. All weekend, all Grace could talk about was "my pig". Unfortunately, we had to put the pig (and all her other gifts) away because one of her cousins tends to hide things that she likes, and she took Grace's pig away first thing. Grace had a second Christmas when we got home and started unpacking everything!

Grace posing with her cousins. From left to right: Monique (8), Kiyana (7), Sarina (5 weeks) (all sisters) and Grace (2)

Grace loves to hold Sarina. I don't know how I got this, but little Sarina smiled for a split second, and I was able to capture it.

On Thursday, December 24, we celebrated Christmas at home so we didn't have to take all her gifts with us to Indiana. Here she is opening her stocking. She received some tights, a coloring book, and some sweets.

A few months ago, I found this Little People barn at a second-hand sale. I paid $3.50 for the big barn and two smaller barns-with two chickens a a few accessories like people. I called Fisher Price and ordered extra animals. I kept this all hidden until Christmas. It's her favorite gift. She is always playing with it and has already told me there is a "mommy goat, mommy horse, daddy horse, and baby horse".

Standing in front of the Christmas tree on Christmas Eve. Not all the gifts were hers; most went to Indiana. We took it easy this year-taking advantage of the fact that she's too young to understand. We also knew she'd be getting things from grandparents and such.

My father in England sent us some money to buy gifts for her. She has the Tag Jr. reader. We bought her some books to go along with it. We bought an Elmo book, and a Curious George book.

My friend Natasha in England sent her a book and this Jack-In-The-Box. Grace loves it!

Here she is in front of "her" tree. It's a little tree that I decorated "Russian" style. A friend of ours are missionaries in Russia (well, were...they had to come home because of VISA issues). She told us that Russians usually decorate their trees with white, silver and royal blue decorations. So, that's what I did. I also went to some Russian web sites and ordered a few Russian ornaments. On Jan. 7 (which is Orthodox Christmas), we will let her open her gifts from Father Frost and the Snowmaiden (I purchased some little Russian dolls off the internet). I think I'll make this a tradition each year. Each year she will get another ornamtent to hang on her tree, and a Russian gift or two.
All in all, I think we had a great Christmas. There were a few arguements, but that's probably normal. We are happy to be home, however, and we look forward to the start of 2010. Grace has come a long way since last year. Even in the last few weeks her language has exploded. She has been using sentences, telling me her feelings, and communicating a lot more. Since the last time I posted, she's learned to recognize more of her letters. Today I went up in the attic and brought down a bunch of toys. I used to be a nanny, and for the little girl I used to watch I bought a whole bunch of educational stuff. Her mother didn't exactly demand that all her toys be educational, but she did push education a lot. I had to care for J in my home for a few months while their house was being worked on, so we needed toys to play with. Anyway, I went to the attic and there was a jackpot of things that I can use with Grace. Since she's learning the alphabet, I thought I'd teach her the sounds. She has the refrigerator magnets from Leap Frog, so she's learning the sounds from there. Melissa and Doug also make a puzzle set. One side has the letter and the other side has a picture representing the sound the letter makes. For example, H has a picture of a horse. It showes the capital letter and the lowercase letter-which is what I like. There was also a three-letter Leap Frog refrigerator magnet that helps children learn how to make words. Since Grace loves letters, I'd figure I'd let her play with it. I know she's too young to understand how to make words, but for right now, she'll just like to put the letters in. There's more which I won't bore you with the details, but I think that instead of going shopping for her birthday, I'll just go back up into the attic and bring some things down from there. There's stuff I bought Grace for Christmas only to realize that I already had it up in the attic-obviously forgotten!
I hope everyone has a great New Year!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Helping mommy make cookies. This was the first time I had let her "help" me with cooking something, and she did a really good job! I was really impressed with my patience and with her enthusiasm!
This year I gave her her own tree. I decorated it with white, silver, and royal blue ornaments (I was told that's how trees are decorated in Russia). I also let her decorate it with handmade ornaments (also a Russian tradition) and I purchased a couple Russian Christmas ornaments from a Russian store online. Here she is putting the "Snowmaiden" ornament on the tree. The Snowmaiden travels with Father Christmas to distribute gifts.

She's getting in the Christmas spirit. She recognizes pictures of St. Nick. We are talking about St. Nick rather than Santa. She will recieve one gift from St. Nick, and next year we'll start talking about the story of St. Nick. We are also teaching her about Jesus' birthday. We've heard "Happy Birthday, Jesus" on the Moody radio station, and I try to sing it every once in a while.

The Christmas tree at the Brookfield zoo during Holiday Lights

Frosty gets a hug at Brookfield Zoo.
Well, it's been a while. I think I need to post more often! Grace has changed so fast! Since she started Playschool in the fall, she's learned all her colors. She's actually very good at it. I've also started letting her watch "Super Why" on channel 11. She actually loves watching it, and I've noticed that she can recognize about 20 of the letters. A,B,C,D,E,F,G,I,L,M,N,O,P,Q,S,T,U,V,W. Ok, so about 19. We actually aren't trying to teach her the letters. We have the refrigerator magnets with the Leapfrog thing she uses while I'm in the kitchen. She is also starting to get an interest in shapes and numbers. She knows circle, heart, and triangle-and she will point out the number two and say "number two". Her vocabulary is growing-but her speech and pronunciation are just a tad behind. We're not worried, however, because she is doing an amazing job catching up.
This year we will celebrate Christmas twice. We will celebrate on Dec. 25 with all our family and all. Also, on January 7 is when Russians celebrate Christmas. We will have a small celebration here at home. After Dec. 25, I will change the table linens to reflect Russian traditions. White table cloth to represent Jesus' swaddling clothes, a white candle to represent that Jesus is the Light of the World, some hay (although it won't be real) to represent the manger, and on Jan 7 bread to show that Jesus is the Bread of Life. Grace has her little tree in the family room that is decorated with Russian Christmas colors, and with a couple Russian ornaments I bought from an on-line Russian store (each year I'll add to the collection). She will have a couple gifts (not many) that she will open. I bought her two collector's dolls from the Russian store. One is a doll of the Snowmaiden and one is a doll in traditional Russian dress. Nothing really fancy-just a small celebration.
We are so looking forward to Christmas this year. She's going to be a lot more interested in opening gifts, and she's going to love being with our families. Also, since Christmas is over a weekend, we have a lot more time to spend with our families and won't be so rushed and crazy.
Have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, Everyone! I'll post pictures of Grace on Christmas later!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Where has the time gone?

Proud Aunt Dea holding baby Sarina minutes old!
"Nana and GiGi (short for Great Grandma) with Grace

This pumpkin was about 1100 pounds!

Wow. I can't believe it's been a month since I've posted! We had a fantastic Halloween. We went to Indiana and spent Halloween with our families. On Friday we went to go visit my mom and then later we visited my husband's grandfather at the nursing home. He fell a few months ago and broke his hip. The healing is going very slow. He's 96 years old.

Anyway, Grace had a blast at the nursing home. My mother-in-law would say "Grace, come here and say Happy Halloween!". Grace would run to the door and say "There's another Grammy! Happy Halloween!" Every time she would see a woman, she would say "Another Grammy!" She was dressed as a Care Bear.

On November 19 my Sister-in-law had her baby girl Sarina Nevaeh (heaven spelled backwards). The baby is doing well, but she has a sensitive stomach, so she requires a special formula. We are hoping she will be able to come home tomorrow so she is home for Thanksgiving, but it depends on how she's eating and if she can keep this formula down.

This Thanksgiving will be a little better than the other years. I will go out on Wednesday with Grace. It's always easier to travel with her earlier in the day. We will stop to visit my mom. Thanksgiving day we have lunch at my MIL's and then we go to my mom's for dinner. I usually stay the night and come home on Friday. I haven't decided whether I will do any shopping on Black Friday or not. We don't need any Christmas gifts, so I don't know. We do have to get back to the house sometime on Friday. I am doing a trial group for a new cat litter. I have to use the litter for two weeks, and each day I have to log in and tell the panel what I think of the litter. I have to make sure the litter boxes are clean so the cats will use this new litter. Either we have to rush home on Friday, or perhaps I'll put another litter box out so that we don't have to come back until Friday night or even Saturday. I haven't decided yet.

Enjoy the pics of Grace on Halloween and our family picture taken at church for our new directory. I think they turned out GREAT!

Monday, October 12, 2009

One Year on Tuesday

Gottcha Day October 13, 2008 Daddy, Dr. Ludmilla from Prokopyevsk Baby House Mommy, and Grace!
Grace at Johansens Farm petting a chick.

Grace at Johansens Farm

One year ago on October 13, Brian and I stood nervously in front of a judge in Kemerovo waiting for her to give her answer. Obviously, she granted us our petition to adopt! A few hours later (after going to the vital records office to get the birth certificate and adoption decree, and the post office for her passport) we were on our way to the orphanage! That three hours in the van was so hard! The translator tried to keep us busy by talking to us, but all we wanted to do was stare numbly out the window with anticipation!

When we arrived, the care takers were finishing up her dinner (it was close to five or so). We spent those few minutes talking to the directress about what had happened while we were gone and asking any last-minute questions. I excused myself to go to the bathroom. I saw a caretaker in the outer office holding Grace, waiting to be summoned in. I didn't want to freak her out by making a big deal, so I forced myself to continue on to the bathroom. When I got back, the children were in the room. Grace was sitting on Brian's lap, both of them looking VERY confused! The minute I walked in the room, Grace looked at me, held out her hands, and started crying! Now, I would like to believe that she recognized me and knew I would comfort her. However, It was more likely that she saw that I was a "woman" and wanted to escape from this "weird creature with hair on his face!". We were urged to quickly change their clothes and get them bundled up. We didn't have any time to cuddle them or get them comfortable with us. Change their clothes and go!

Grace was very quiet in the van. There are no car seats, and there wouldn't have been any room for on in the small van. I took a bottle out and filled it with some juice we had brought from our hotel room. While we were riding in the van, I gave her the juice. She not only drank it all...she fell asleep in my lap! She slept the entire way back to the hotel...a three hour ride!

When we arrived back at the hotel, the ladies were all in the hallway waiting for us. As soon as we walked in, they were oohhing and ahhhing over the children. They both started talking excitedly, first poining at Grace's nose and then at Brian. The translator said that they were saying that she looks like him. We got her upstairs and then gave her a really quick bath/shower. There wasn't a "tub" in there, so we sat her in the shower. The shower detached and we were able to wet a washcloth with it. We needed to bathe her because she smelled dirty. She hated the shower. We quickly dressed her in her pajamas and I spent a few minutes with her before putting her to bed in her crib. She fell right to sleep after rocking herself back and forth for a few minutes.

That was the day we had dreamed about.

Today, she is a happy, healthy (well, ok...right now she has a stuffy nose, but otherwise...) normal toddler! Most people cannot tell that she was adopted as she has caught up almost completely to where she needs to be. Most assume she was born premature (which she was...).

Right now she likes Elmo, Veggie Tales, Super Why and "the letter game" (Wheel of Fortune). She loves her Playschool class and the gymnastics class she is in. She is learning her colors, and a few letters. She is almost potty trained. She will tell me when she has to go, but I am still the one who initiates the potty. She still has trouble with the poo. I have learned that if I make her sit on the potty shortly after breakfast, I can usually catch her before she goes in her pants. The only problem is that sometimes she has one after lunch, and today she had one before dinner (it was more a result of the extra mucus...) She is wearing big girl undies, though, because she gets infections from regular diapers.

She loves to eat, but she is going through a very picky stage right now, she only has a few foods that are her faborites. However, she is getting a little more adventurous. I can usually coax her into eating dinner by offering her crackers to eat with her meal (a bite of food and a bite of cracker).

Her weight and size are still on the small size. She is wearing size 2T tops, but her bottoms are 18 month only because she needs the length. I have to take the waists in, which is difficult to do on jeans.

Over all, she is doing great, and I can't believe a whole year has gone by! We have watched her go from a very shy, quiet, baby-like girl to a talkative, loud (oh, so loud) normal toddler who loves to put mommy and daddy's shoes on! We are so proud of our little angel.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Court, Potty training....

After court. Feeling tired.
Grace with her Junior Deputy Star

Grace being served her papers.

Waitng for Grace to be served.

Rice Play

House play

Gym time

Good-bye song

Art time

Well, today we went to the court building in Downtown Chicago (the Daley Center) and had our hearing to "readopt" Grace. In order for us to get an Illinois birth certificate, we needed to adopt her in Illinois. It's nothing serious. It was kinda cute in a stupid way. We had to be at the Daley Center by 8am, so that meant Brian and I were up before 5 to start getting ready. Grace heard us and woke up at 5:30. We were at the train station on time and caught the 6:30 train. It was a mile walk to the building. Wasn't so bad, except Brian's back is really bad and he was tempted to get a taxi. We went in up to the 17th floor and met our lawyer, who had us sign some documents. She then went down to the 7th floor and filed our petition. We then had to meet her down on the 7th floor and be served with papers. Actually, Grace was served the papers. It's kinda funny. Grace is the one that has to be summoned, so she is served the papers. The Deputy acutally gave them to her while our lawyer took a photo of her being "served". We then had to go back upstairs and wait while our lawyer submitted our paperwork to the judge. When it was our turn for court, we went in and were sworn in. The judge asked how we were doing, and noticed that we had been home with Grace for almost a year and said congratulations. He signed the documents and wished us a good day. That's it. As we were leaving, a deputy offered Grace a sucker. We waited outside the courtroom for a few minutes while our paperwork was finished , then the lawyer came out and gave us our copy and that was it! We were done by 10. So, now she has to get a letter from our agency (which she says will be a challenge because she hasn't had good experience with getting paperwork in a timely manner from that agency) and after she gets that paperwork, she will apply for a new Illinois birth certificate for Grace, which will take about three months. We paid one flat fee, and that covered all the work she will do for us.

So, I will post the pictures from court, we have a picture of her being "served". She also received a little Deputy Star after she was served. Then we have a picture of us standing by the window with a really nice church in the background that Brian took after court. We would have liked to get a picture with the judge, but he was busy and we didn't want to sit around until the other three couples went.

I will also try to post some pics I took of Grace at playschool. I took video there, and was able to freeze-frame a few of them for still pictures. I'll see how that works.

Potty training is going well, but right now it's more about "parent" training. She pees on the potty no problem, but pooing on the potty is a whole other story! I am usually good about sitting her down when I know she should go (right after breakfast and sometimes after lunch). I have been trying to keep her in underwear because the pull-ups were giving her...problems.

Gotta go for now. We have AWANA tonight at our church, and I teach the Cubbies! Grace gets to come along as a practice Cubbie, and I appreciate it because otherwise I'd need a sitter because Brian has docotor appointments on Wednesdays. Go red table!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

School Time!

There are a lot of preschools in our area that have programs for 2-year olds. However, I was too lazy this spring (or maybe just not ready...) to register her on time. So, I still wanted her in a "class", so I contacted our local community center for a list of their classes. She's not old enough to enter their preschool program, but they do have a Playschool for two and three-year-olds. On Tuesdays and Thursdays we go to Playschool. Parents stay and participate. The first 45 minutes are free play. There are TONS of different toys. There are ramps for them to run up and down (Grace likes to actually run to the end and then jump off right into a pile of cushions), an airplane teeter-totter, a little play house, dress-up clothes, dolls, buggies, play vaccums, puzzles, oh, too much to mention! So, we play for 45 minutes (rather, she plays and I try to keep up with her!). Next, we clean up and gather in a circle for song time and snack time. Last, we go into the gym for gym time, or do an art project. It's an hour and 15 minutes max. It was really nice. She went to the first class, but missed the second because she threw up that morning. Nothing serious. She just had a ton of post-nasal drip in her tummy, and she had to get it out. I just kept her home to make sure it wasn't anything else.

I also wanted to get her into some sort of gym class or dance class. The only class our Park District offered for her age was a pre-gymnastics class. They learn about balance, rhythm, and such. It's cute. The class is about 45 minutes long, and the children go in the class by themselves, while the parents wait outside. Her first class went well, according to the teacher.

I will be taking a video camera with me for the next Playschool class and gym class so that I can get photos from them.

She is doing well. She started Sunday School again today. We had the summer off. She walked right in and grabbed a doll stroller. Didn't even glance back to say "good-bye". She does very well in classes and such. We hope it's because we don't make a big deal about it. The Sunday we were back, we took her to church and put her in the Church class for her age. Anyway....

We are looking forward to our fall and winter. We are very close to our one-year "Gotcha-Day" anniversary. She has gained about 7 pounds the last year, and grew about 6 inches or so. She is still having eating issues, but she continues to gain weight, and we are hoping that the eating problems are just a phase. There are other parents who bore their children that are having similar problems, so I'm not too worried at this point. I am sure I will write more next month, but for now I'll go. I'll post pictures of her in Playschool and Gym class next week....

Friday, August 14, 2009

Time Flies

The three of us at a wedding where I was the photographer.

Photography class practice...and experimenting with Photoshop!

Practicing my "portrait photography" and experimenting with Photoshop!

I can't believe that summer vacation is almost over for school kids! It seems that they just got out yesterday...

Our anniversary is this weekend. Last year for our tenth anniversary, Brian completely took my by surprise. He called me from work to tell me to dress somewhat nice for our dinner. He picked me up and took me to a nice restaraunt I had never seen before in our area. It had a little balcony. When we walked in, the server practically jumped to seat us. He took us all the way upstairs and out onto the deck, where there was one tiny table with a dozen red roses on it. All the servers were beaming. They all knew what was going on because the flowers were delivered earlier that day. We started to have a really nice dinner...until it started to rain. We ended up having to move inside after being on the balcony for only a few minutes.

This year won't be so romantic, but it will still be special. Brian is going to an AC/DC concert tonight. On Saturday morning, we will drive to my in-laws. Their community is having like a Family Fun Fest. We will spend the afternoon there or in their pool. We will then leave Grace with Nanna and Pappa (and Monique and Kiyana, her cousins) to go out to eat. On Sunday after church we will go see my mom before heading home.

Grace's potty training continues to do well. We had a little trouble last week when she had a few days of accidents all day, but we are back on track, and we added pooping on the potty! She took me completely by surprise yesterday. She said she had to go potty, and I assumed it was pee. She sat for a few minutes, and I wandered away because sometimes she like "privacy". Well, after a minute or so she started to whine and-there it was! She calmed down once she saw I was excited that she went on the potty. She got two MnM's. Today, she did the same. However, about a half hour after she went the first time, she said she had to go potty, but it was too late, she had already gone in her pull-up. I wasn't mad or upset, but I just told her to tell mommy next time she had to make poo. I guess that the fact she went twice willingly is a huge step forward. Everyone is telling me that training for poo takes a long time after they master pee, but she's starting now. Horray for that!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Cute Pics

Since this summer has been cool, I've decided to potty train Grace. It took her a good three weeks to really get the hang of it. The first week, she really did not want to sit on the potty, and when she did "go" on the potty, she acted all freaked out, like "wait, this isn't supposed to happen!". I made the error of taking her away from home for a stay at the in-laws. Up to that point in the week, she had been used to sitting on the potty and even going once in a while. However, she now had a new place (the same potty) and more audience (her grandparents and cousins). This means that she absolutely refused to go on the potty. She would sit for a long time and not go. Needless to say, we were there for about three days, and she ended up going in her diaper the whole time....a major setback.

That Sunday, I resolved to continue on as if we had been home the whole weekend. She did an awesome job of "going" on the potty that day. That next week, beginning Monday, I resolved to stay home and really work on it. By that Wednesday, she had very few accidents. I again had to go to the in-laws for a few days, but this time when I took the potty, she actually used it! I still had to keep her in pull-ups while we were there because my MIL would have been furious if Grace had peed on the floor. However, she didn't go through many pull-ups because she remained dry the whole time.

By the third week, she was peeing like a champ. Again, only about one or two accidents for the week. I must say, however, that this involves pee. She has not yet mastered pooping on the potty. I know when she is supposed to go during the day, and I try to catch her, but she either holds it in until she's wearing her diaper (or underwear) or she goes on the floor if I'm letting her go in the buff.

Last night I let her wear training underwear to bed for the first time. We had to have her wear a pull-up during church, but she came home dry as a bone. She wore the training underwear the rest of the day. This is the first time we've really let her go without a pull-up for the majority of the day. This week, we will be exploring outside the home. Any time I ran an errand in the last few weeks, she'd been mostly dry. Now, I want to try a longer outing and see how she does using public toilets.

I plan on taking her to the zoo this week. The bathrooms usually have "tot potties"...toilets that are smaller and lower to the ground for toddlers to use.

Otherwise, she is doing well. Her language skills improve daily. She is now using two-and three-word phrases. She can communicate her needs to us either verbally or with simple sign language, although speech is becoming more common and sign language rare, which is fine...the sign language was used to jump-start her learning of English and a way for her to communicate her needs to us. It really worked, but now that her language has progressed, she doesn't feel the need to use sign.

Sadly, Kiddie Land, which is just a few blocks away from us, is closing at the end of this season. I am hoping to take her there even though she's too young to really enjoy too much of it. I am hoping to have my nieces go along, so that they can go on the rides with her. I am sad to see this amusement park go. It has been there for many years.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Fourth of July

Swimming with Daddy. She loves the water!
Tired on the Fourth of July!

Although our day was cold and rainy, the celebration was great. Our Fourth of July was very relaxing with friends and family gathered to celebrate our freedom. Grace had a lot of children to play with. They certainly kept her busy!

Saturday was rainy and cold, so I kept her out of the pool. She didn't seem to miss it much. She did keep saying "pool" and pointing at it, but she didn't get upset when I didn't put her in her suit and take her down.

We decided to stay an extra night since my husband had a change of plans. On Sunday, we couldn't have asked for better weather! We visited a church and even my sister-in-law attended service (I think her mother just about had a heart attack!). It was so nice, the kids all went swimming! My MIL and SIL are taking my niece to get evaluated in Indianapolis, so I have my other niece here with us for a few days. It's great, because she keeps Grace busy!

All in all it was a nice weekend. Since we were all stuck indoors for the majority of the day on Saturday, it gave us all a chance to just sit down and talk to everyone. It was great to just catch up and relax. We hope next year brings fantastic weather. Of course, Grace was so tired from all the excitement that she went to bed early. All the noise from the fireworks didn't seem to bother her at all.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

One Year Ago Today

One year ago today-June 23, 2008, Brian and I walked into a Russian orphanage and met our daughter for the first time. When the caretaker placed her into my arms, she was so confused, but she didn't complain. We got to spend an hour and a half with her that day. It was so hard to say good-bye. I remember going back to the hotel rooom, and although we were very tired from the time-change and excitement, we watched our videos and looked at our pictures over and over again, wondering if this really did just happen! In the 8 months since we brought her home, I marvel at how much she's changed. No longer is she a shy, quiet, confused little baby. She is now a talkative, stubborn, smart toddler!