I can't believe how much she has changed in just 20 months. (this is the very first time I saw Francesca)
There are so many things Francesca can do now. She is walking, talking in sentence, though still rather hard to understand. "Poop" and "shoe" sound way to similar. The other day she said, "I want more fries, Mom".
She is almost potty trained and most importantly, she is totally and completely bonded to me. When she first came home, she would go to anyone. Now, she runs to me and calls out "Mama" with such joy, I want to cry, wondering what I did to deserve her.
She seems to have an affinity for numbers, as in "2 M&M's please!" She can even count to 5.
The three little ones all have such a special relationship. They are definitely partners in crime, always together, always getting into trouble. Francesca calls little Catherine, "beano" when she is happy or "ta ta" when she is tattling. If Catherine is gone for a little while, Francesca runs to hug her as soon as she is back. She worries about Victoria. If Francesca has a snack, she will say "Toria, eat?" She never wants to leave her out.
A few months ago, my friend, Anya, who lives in Ukraine, wrote to Francesca's parents and told them that she had been adopted. At first, her parents were angry. They thought it was some kind of cruel joke. Finally, they understood she really had a family. Anya told them about her surgeries and how much she was loved. Her mother had been grief stricken, worrying about her. Her father told Anya that they had wanted a baby for a long time. They didn't have any idea that Francesca was going to have Apert syndrome until she was born. They were devastated. Her mother was too upset to see pictures of Francesca or to know more about her.
I sure hope that, somehow, someday, they will know what a wonderful person Francesca is!
Francesca has such a sweet, kind spirit. She loves to help. I am amazed at her empathy. If I've lost something (which happens alot), she is the first to start the search. She sets the table, even if we aren't eating a meal. She brings me my shoes. She never, ever wants to displease me.
It occurred to me the other day, that I have never taken Francesca and Victoria to a museum. Pretty sad. Elliot was signed up for every class, learned Spanish, and attended symphonies before he was five, but number five and six are getting jipped. Francesca is going to be four soon, so I had to get cracking.
Sure, taking five kids to a museum is a little challenging, but I couldn't let that stop me.
First, we packed a few snacks.
We went to the Museum of Natural History in Atlanta. I practically passed out at the cost. It was actually cheaper to get an annual pass, so at least we can come back!
Cute rubber snakes.
At first, the "babies" (I'm not sure how much longer I can get away with calling them that) were a little stunned. Those are some pretty big teeth.
After a little while though, they really got curious. I loved watching the looks of wonder on their faces.
Victoria kept shrieking and pointing.
Of course, one of the first things we had to do was eat, because, you know, we hadn't eaten in over 5 minutes.
This area was all hands on experiments.
Catherine's favorite exhibit was the tornado. She is kind of interested/worried by natural disasters in general. She always wants to check to make sure that our smoke detectors are working.
Solemn Victoria. Though lately, she has been giggling alot more and we realized that she has dimples. They are very hard to catch on camera though.
The kids' area was amazing!
I won't mention the fit someone threw when they learned that we couldn't take the starfish home.
Victoria is getting a lot braver about letting me put her down out in public.
So, the next time any of you are in Atlanta, give me a call and we can all go see the dinosaurs, cause we are cool now and have a pass.
(Snack break #3)
But you all better bring your own snacks, because we certainly didn't bring enough!