Posted by: Tracy Barsamian Ventola | September 6, 2012

Adoption Journey: Home Six Months!

Keira and Lauren at the park.

Only six months?  It’s hard to believe there was ever a time when Lauren wasn’t in our lives.  She is one amazing little girl.  She transitioned almost seemlessly into our family.  New family, new culture, new country, NO PROBLEM for our little rock-star!

1. Totally potty trained during day. Usually has dry diaper in morning.

FEW WEEKS UPDATE:  Due to the tried-and-true OFF KLTR parenting methodology (the anti-potty training module), Lauren is no longer potty trained.  She pees and poops occasionally on the potty and uses her diaper like a champ!

SIX MONTH UPDATE:  Our girl has long forgotten those two years of intensive potty training in China!!  She is no longer potty trained AT ALL.  She is, however, starting to ask to use the potty (with a very poor record of success).  She’s pretty much right in line with other two-year olds without those two years of previous experience…

2. Does not enjoy bedtime at all. Can cry for up to an hour.

FEW WEEKS UPDATE:  Due to the tried-and-true OFF KLTR parenting methodology (the anti-sleep training module) — rocking the baby to sleep or driving her around in the car ’til she falls asleep and then co-sleeping with her — Lauren takes up to two hours to fall asleep and wakes up regularly during the night.

SIX MONTH UPDATE:  Lauren is in her own bed!!  Keira and Lauren are sleeping in the same room.  This is working out beautifully for Keira as she’s never liked sleep in general…but, finds night-time more appealing with a little sister in her room.  The downside, however, is that we don’t let Lauren so much as whimper in fear that she’ll wake up princess #1!  As a result, princess #2 has very little experience with and/or ability to self-sooth, so she does not sleep through the night.  A wicked-awesome night is one waking.  A more typical night is two to three.  Again, see OFF KLTR parenting methodology above!

3. Likes noodles. Not crazy about rice.

FEW WEEKS UPDATE:  Due to the tried-and-true OFF KLTR parenting methodology (the unhealthy eating module), Lauren now loves chicken nuggets and hot dogs (organic, of course — oh dear…).  But soup and dumplings are her all-time favorite.

SIX MONTH UPDATE:  She eats pretty much anything.  Still loves noodles.  Vodka sauce is a new favorite (why are we eating Vodka sauce, you ask?  It’s the only jarred sauce that Rob’s royal Italian palate can tolerate!! …  Thank God both girls like it!).  WARNING:  DR. GRACE, PLEASE STOP READING HERE!!  Lauren is especially fond of processed meats:  ham, bacon, sausage, hot dogs and her new favorite – for which she would reject any of these lesser processed pork products – is pepperoni!

4. Favorite party trick is throwing any and all objects into floor.  Second favorite trick is putting her fingers in your mouth and trying to rip your face off.

FEW WEEKS UPDATE:  Lauren has added the raspberry to her repertoire!

SIX MONTH UPDATE:  She doesn’t really do any of these party tricks anymore.  I guess that she’s out-grown them.  But she has become a dancing machine!  She sings and jumps up and down, shaking her head, whipping her ever-growing head of hair around!!  And she loves to say, “1, 2, 3 Jump!” and get about .125 inches of air.  Also very cute.

5. Has some Chinese words. Sadly her parents do not understand any of them.

FEW WEEKS UPDATE:  Lauren can now say “no!” (thanks, Keira, for modeling that so well!!) and “hello!”.

SIX MONTH UPDATE:  Lauren is now fluent in English.*  She talks in sentences.  Her cutest phrases include, “I help you.”  “Bye, bye.  Have a good day, Baba.”  “I’m hungry.”  She says this last one, about once every five minutes.  She does not stop eating!!  She finishes a good size meal, plays for five minutes, and toddles over to announce, “I’m hungry”.

6. Has teeny, tiny feet. Wears a size 5 with thick socks.

FEW WEEKS UPDATE:  None, they’re still tiny.

SIX MONTH UPDATE:  Still tiny.  Maybe a 5 and a half.

7. Has a shaved head. But she has such cute little features, she can pull it off!! Our best guess is that it is for ease of care by foster family.

FEW WEEKS UPDATE:  Her hair is really growing in!  And she has ALOT of it!!

SIX MONTH UPDATE:  Lauren’s beautiful, thick hair has grown just enough to be directly in her eyes!  She screams “hurts!” when I try to put any sort of clip in her hair, so she’s looking a little (okay, a lot!) shaggy…

8. Shakes her head no! Like a champ.

FEW WEEKS UPDATE:  No change.  Still really good at it.

SIX MONTH UPDATE:  She has added words to her world-class head-shaking.  “No Teecha (Keira)!!”  “No Mama!!”  “No Baba!!”

9. Has no choice but to stay in bed all night because her core is so weak that she cannot get herself from laying to sitting (or from sitting to standing). Poor little thing.  (Update:  she stood up all on her own yesterday — she was heavily applauded by all of us).

FEW WEEKS UPDATE:  Lauren can go from laying down, to sitting up, to standing up, all in one swift move.  She learned to do this over a couple of days of doing nothing but practicing!  She quit eating, sleeping, and playing — just got up and then threw herself back on the ground and did it all again.  This is one determined little girl!!

SIX MONTH UPDATE:  It’s awfully hard to believe that it was only months ago that Lauren couldn’t get up on her own!  Now, no play structure is too high for this little dare-devil!!  And everyday, she jumps with her sister from the ottoman to the couch shouting “Watch Fei Fei (Lauren’s nickname)!”.

10. Has an adorable little giggle that makes us all laugh!!

FEW WEEKS UPDATE:  Pretty much everything she does makes us laugh!!  And we just found out that she LOVES the water.  She loves the tub, but with the warm weather, she’s spent the past few afternoons playing with the water table.  She picks a spot and then doesn’t move from that spot for over an hour!  She dumps the water right over her head and LOVES it.

SIX MONTH UPDATE:  Same adorable giggle.  Same adorable smile.  Same ability to melt our hearts in a matter of seconds.  We are a very lucky parents.  Thank you, Universe.

*We attribute much of Lauren’s tremendous verbal success to Dr. Krebbs.

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Responses

  1. Love hearing about little Lauren! She looked so grown up today with her hair so long and beautiful.

    • She fell asleep in the stroller on the 5 minute walk to the car!! For better or worse, that was her nap for the day!! So great to see you and your cutie-patooties at the picnic, too!!

  2. Yeah! What a fabulous update!

    • Oh, thank you! So great to see you and the girls this weekend!!! I’m looking forward to your reply to tonight’s post, as you are the master of children’s literature!!

  3. This is such a happy post Tracy. Since you mention a favorite guilty pleasure of mine; processed meats, I have to share my all-time favorite: Boar’s Head Soppresatta. Not sure about the spelling.

    • Boar’s Head Soppresatta, huh?! I suspect that my little cold-cut lover will be an instant fan! We’ll have to try it!! Hey, I’m so sorry to have missed you on Monday at the party. What a bummer! Hopefully we’ll catch up soon!

  4. How amazing and resilent the lil’ babes are! It’s amazing what they can accomplish when they feel safe and are sourrounded by so much unconditional love;o)

    • Ugh- please excuse the typo’s I made in my rush:o/

    • You are so right, Andrea. Kids are just so resilient!! And it makes life so much easier that this particular little kiddo is just so happy! Her new dance moves will crack you up!! She’s one easy little baby girl to fall in love with!!


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