Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Today Was a Gift

Last Spring we took a day trip to the aquarium with two other adoptive families who had recently brought little ones home from China. We had such a good time, and all day I especially watched one family's two-year-old little girl (who I don't have a photo of!) and imagined what it would be like when we came back to visit the aquarium with our two-year-old Charlotte in just a few months.

Just a few months after that, we were in China. There were lots of activities planned for us while we were there, including a trip to a beautiful park and the city zoo. While at the park we saw a pond where children could feed these swarms of huge fish. It was amazing to watch! And of course, at the zoo we saw all kinds of animals including my favorite, the pandas. But Charlotte had zero interest in any of it. We couldn't get her to really even look at the animals anywhere. Nothing of any entertainment value even showed up on her radar. Her mind just wasn't geared for that. All she was concerned about was getting food and staying very, very, very close to me. She refused to sit in the stroller and would only stop screaming if I carried her (in the scorching south China heat). This sweet baby had no idea how to enjoy a trip to the park or the zoo.

I was afraid for Rylee to get too close for fear they would gobble her up!

Not sure how we got this smile, but it was certainly NOT the fish!

When she wasn't screaming at the zoo, this was the expression she had!

What?! Mommy can't carry me 24 hours a day? Seriously, though, this was the first time Scott held her in public and she was in total shut down mode by this point!

But TODAY!!! Today, we went to the aquarium. And today ... my baby "oohed and aahed" over fish and otters and penguins and turtles all day long! Today she refused to sit in the stroller because she wanted to run and climb to see everything with her brothers and sister. She wouldn't even let me hold her hand!! :) Today was a gift.

Sorry this one's blurry ... that's how fast she moved all day!

Petting the stingray ... I think she would have jumped in if we'd let her! :)

The little red bow in front of Jackson is Charlotte!