Catch Up: >>> It has been months since our last post, mostly due to a crazy amount of activity and little time to think and share. Eli has been growing in so many ways in recent months. I will jump around, but share what details I can remember for now.
Summer: >>>> Over the summer Eli traveled thousands of miles to Denver and back for Church, Elitch Gardens and other fun. He went from no-rides to roller-coaster-rides and loved everything about Elitch. He became famous and loved at our Summer Church in Denver, referred to as "the Denver Church". The teens loved him and asked to hang with him all the time. He loved to sing, dance, play and run around with the youth group. Another thing that was cool about this summer was how intimate Eli became with the other kids. He and Benjamin spent time together and Victoria really helped take care of him alot. Elizabeth and Hosanna also really connected with him. His cousin, Jeffrey, moved to Colorado and has taken a liken to him, which is a great surprise. Another summer change was Eli's love for skateboards. He began playing on a skateboard nearly everyday. Between a scooter and skateboard, that kid lived on wheels.
Fall: >>>> Last night we went to a concert with Steven Curtis Champman and other artist in support of ShowHope, an organization that gave us a grant for his adoption. While hanging out with the ShowHope staff person, who was sort of a road manager for SCC. He found out that Eli was about to turn 5 yrs old and kindly surprised Eli with a $5 dollar bill. Later while talking about school and school buses, this man, David, offered to take Eli to his bus. Eli doesn't understand, but of the 1200+ people at the concert, I'm sure few got to go onto SCC's travel bus like Eli. Another Fall surprise for Eli was an early snow. We had 5 inches of snow in early October and he went outside with Benjamin and Victoria all day to play in the snow.
School: >>>> Last year Eli had Mrs. Lynn and a team of D20 special teachers to learn from. He loved school, the bus and everything having to do with school. His language, sight and speech all get special attention. The ladies giving him this help fell in love with him and love teaching him. We decided to move to Denver for Church Ministry and left this preschool with much sadness. However, over the summer it was decided to reconsider the move. After months of prayer and waiting, circumstances unfolded that would leave us in the Springs and Eli back in the D20 preschool. Last week we went to an assessment with that team of teachers to review the plan for Eli and they once again expressed their love for Eli and commitment to his growth. They are working on his vision, speech and learning ability. They understand Eli and have taken special steps to make sure he learns all he can. One teacher said she would go to whatever D20 school we move to for Kindergarten to have the ability to work with Eli. We are so thankful and can't explain with words how special this team of teachers are to us and to Eli.
Eyesight and Glasses: >>>> Eli has been doing well with his vision, considering. We have an amazing doctor who gives Eli lots of attention and favor, once again, we are so thankful. One eye just is not working anymore. The other eye has 2200 to 2400 vision, which is legally blind. However, the kids runs around like he has great vision and is fearless on the playground, house and sidewalk. When we brought him home from China, he could barely walk, would not play on the smallest of playgrounds and could not walk from one floor texture/color without stopping to check each step. Now, the kids runs like crazy, and wears his glasses 24/7. We went to get new glasses recently and he wanted blue frames, so bless God, he gets blue frames. We are thankful that he thrives under the care of so many helpful people.
Friends and Fame: >>> Eli has girlfriends at Church and the Neighborhood. He loves to hang out with a few girls from the community and has special love for a little girl named Ansley from church. It has been great to see so many people become a friend to Eli. Even friends of Elizabeth and Hosanna love Eli and come to visit. They talk directly to him and he considers them all his friends. His full personality is alive and kicking, which has made him into a regular socialite....
Eli is a huge blessing..he loves for me to "tuck him in" every night and has stopped asking if we are coming back to get him. He still asks about where he will eat sometimes, but so does my other kids. He seems to love his home, family, church and friends. He has started asking about China, which has been good so far. He seems to love the fact that we call him SON, and that he has a mom and dad. And....make no doubt about it...WE LOVE HIM.....He has changed our life in so many ways....Bless God....