Nasko's favorite things (as of this moment): 1. His new sunglasses.
We bought them for a dollar at Dollar General. Best dollar we ever spent. He even sleeps with them. He likes to point out that he has glasses now, just like his mama and taty. He has even learned to sign "glasses" when they go missing (which is rare, since they are usually on!)
After going to the zoo yesterday, and almost being eaten by a goose, Nasko is very interested in all animals. He has really calmed down around Allen, but we still have to remind him not to kick or throw things at least ten times a day.
3. Making the sound "Ah-awwww."
Whenever we tell Nasko "no/nay" (which, you can imagine, is all the time), he says "ah-awwww..." like we've just crushed his hopes and dreams. It's hillarious. It doesn't matter if we are telling him "no" about taking third bath or plugging a nightlight into Allen's rear or jumping on the trampoline naked, it's the same response!
Thanks to Amy Alderman, we were informed of an open gym at the CheerZone in Springfield today. Perfect! We paid our $5.00 and jumped and ran and moved and danced to our hearts' content.
Well, more than Mama's heart's content, but that's not important. This child is going to put me in the best shape of my life. Holding him while jumping on a giant trampoline is the best calf workout ever!
Thanks for the suggestion, Amy! We'll be back next week. And the week after. And the week after! :–)
Also, thanks to our friends Mike and Jeni Twist, we now have a borrowed trampoline for our living room. Mike and Jeni have been our resource for all things sensory regulation disorder, so they thought Nasko would benefit from a small trampoline. They were right! (See also; jumping on trampoline naked.)
5. The effects of a nap.
Now, notice I did not write "napping" or "naptime." Nasko fought me for 1.5 hours, but he finally took his first nap today. It was beautiful. He was SO tired from all the running and jumping, he could hardly keep his eyes open. I just knew that he had to take a nap, but he didn't seem to agree. He slept from 3:30 until we woke him up at 5:00. At 5:00 he wasn't ready to get up, so we snuggled in my bed for a long time.
This evening has been our BEST time yet. Chance had to go to his public speaking class tonight, so it was Nasko and my first time home alone. Because of his nap, he was so calm and so wonderful. We honestly had the best time.
6. Painted fingernails.
Nasko really enjoyed having me cut his fingernails last night. He keeps asking me to do it again. Since his nails obviously don't grow that fast, I decided to try to paint his nails tonight. Why not – Taty was gone and Nasko was calm!
We started by painting them clear, but my clear polish had gone bad, so Nasko's nails may or may not be a little shimery at this point... ahem...
We, of course, had to send pictures to Taty to show him.
Nasko fits into our family perfectly (except for his hatred of naps... Mama and Taty LOVE naps). His love of fruit matches ours completely though. Tonight, when our food ministry arrived (thank you ACC!), he was so excited about a salad of grapes, kiwi, and fresh pineapple. He could have eaten the whole bowl. It was great practice for the signs "more" and eventually "all-done!"
Nasko is eating up the fact that his voice and his opinions are now being heard. He uses the signs that we have taught him, but he also works to act out what he wants in mime.
He really began signing spontaneously during naptime today. He was asking to eat, drink, go in the car, put on his shoes, etc. Everything but sleep. We obviously need to work on that sign!
Yesterday, I emailed Svet the video of Nasko singing "The Clean Up Song." He was as impressed as we were about Nasko's imitation of an English song. He also commented on the goggles that Nasko had around his neck. They are from our dress-up box, and before Nasko got his new sunglasses, he was wearing them all the time. Svet reminded me that Nasko had a similar pair on during his going-away party. Svet said that many of the orphanage workers wear their reading glasses around their necks, so Nasko thinks he is doing the same. It all makes sense now!
The coolest part was tonight though. Nasko came to me with his sunglasses and pointed at the screw holding them together. It was a little loose, so I took him to our toolbox and I tightened it for him. He continued to point at it, and then eventually used his finger to imitate a necklace. Ah-ha! He wanted to wear his sunglasses around his neck!
So, we then moved to my box of yarn. I quickly cut a piece and made him a "necklace." He was SO happy. He could not stop smiling. He kissed me and danced around the house.
God knew what he was doing, because I desire to know what children are trying to communicate (it's part of my job). Nasko desired to be heard, but never had someone willing to try to understand.
(You may all leave comments about making you cry now... blah, blah, blah. Like, you think I'm not crying twenty times a day?! My boy is home! I haven't cried so many happy tears in my life!)
9. The doctor.
Nasko was supposed to have his first doctor's appointment today, but because of the way he was pulling on his ears, we actually went to the doctor earlier this week. We kept today's appointment though, so that we could discuss transition, referrals, and overall wellness.
We went to the office a little early because we knew that Nasko enjoyed playing on the fire truck the other day, and we wanted him to have adequate time to play before being called back to the examining room. The funny thing was though, Nasko recognized that we were at Dr. Phillips' office, and he really wanted to go back to the examining room to see her.
We brought his pretend doctors' kit again, and he kept pointing to her exam room, and using the stethoscope on himself. The combination of his exhaustion from open gym and the fact that he was communicating, but we weren't able to give him what he wanted, caused him to throw a nice little tantrum.
Chance handled it SO well, though. He took Nasko into the coat room (small, enclosed space with no other people) and he began to rock Nasko. He rocked him and spoke to him in a soothing voice. Nasko finally calmed down, and let Taty continue to hold him. When the nurse finally called Nasko's name, he screeched with joy!
Dr. Phillips is so kind and so good with Nasko. He wanted to touch her, hold her hand, and eventually use her real stethoscope. She obliged to all of these things. We love Dr. Phillips!
In case you were wondering, Nasko is very healthy. He weighed 37.8 pounds today, and he was 42.5 inches tall. He's in the 14th percentile in weight and the 18th percentile in height. (Had to teach Chance all about percentiles on the car ride home!)
He had his adenoids and tonsils removed when he was little. He had GURD and other feeding issues when he came to his most recent orphanage, but they worked a lot on his feeding, and he eats like a horse now! :–)
We had him referred for Occupational Therapy and Speech Therapy at St. John's. We'll also be seeing an ophthalmologist about some issues with his eyes and his vision.
Dr. Phillips said that she was so impressed that he was not afraid of her, and that he was willing to lift his shirt, pee in a cup, open his mouth, let her look in his ears, etc.
10. His Taty.
We missed Taty tonight, but it's a reminder of the sad reality that he has to return to work tomorrow. :–( Chance called multiple times to check on us, so I think he missed us too! He said that he thought he'd enjoy the break, but instead has found himself thinking of home constantly. He's really a dad now, isn't he?
At one point, Nasko and I sent Taty a picture of us.
Then Taty sent one back.
When I showed Nasko the picture, he repeated, "Hi Taty!" and kissed my phone. I think we're doing pretty well in the attachment department!
I'm sure this list will continually evolve and grow, but for now, those are ten of Nasko's favorite things!