3:50 PM

I love you more today than yesterday, but not as much as tomorrow

An amazing thing happened today.  Elora and I were snuggling.  She has become so snuggly in the past few days and I love it.  I was kissing on her, she was kissing on me, we were exchanging bear hugs, giggling and today for fun instead of saying "Mommy loves you", I said "wo ai ni" (mandarin for I love you).  She gave me her sign for more, I said it again, wo ai ni, and she replied MORE!  She was asking me for more loving!  Of course I obliged, and my heart burst into a million bits. 
It was not the first time I had told her wo ai ni, in fact in China I said it a few times.  We thought that she did not have very much mandarin comprehension, well nothing we were telling her, although she seemed to be perfectly clear on what her nanny was telling her.  I guess some where along the way I dropped off using any of my very limited amount of Chinese with the exception of her name.  Now we've hit some amazing communication cross roads where she can understand and also reply, but more phenomenally she knows the word love in Chinese.  That means some one showed her love, she has experienced love, some one else whispered those words in her ears too.  My girl has been loved.  It should not come as a surprise since she is so very lovable, we are not the first adults to fall for her hook, line and sinker and we won't be the last.  It is just SO reassuring to know, to be positive.  It has lead me to wonder what other mandarin words she knows, we are pretty sure she is not speaking any of them but I am guessing she understands a lot more then we gave her credit for.  I am going to work on testing that out soon, I just discovered google translate has a spoken option, I will try using it to see if she can follow simple directions.

Here are a few more things that have been working, I like this topic and think I am going to keep listing things I won't say weekly, but how about regularly?

Hidden veggies
I have the world's pickiest eater, my son.  Not only we he only consume about 4 meals, but he will only eat a few spoonfuls of even his favourite meal that he asked for.  Yes, I did say I will never be a short order cook to my children, I am eating my words, but vow that this madness will some day end, just not today.  In the mean time what's working is hiding veggies in favourite foods.  My son likes pasta, particularly mac and cheese in either orange or white varieties.  Thankfully pasta sauce, even the kind that comes out of a little chemical filled packet, is perfect for hiding pureed veggies in.  I use sweet potato or carrot in the orange sauce and cauliflower in the white.  I am trying to work him up to a rose sauce with "spices" the spices actually being tiny chopped spinach and broccoli.  Also we tried spinach hidden in brownies, although he is not much on sweets so this did not sway him.  The adults ate them and we swear you can not taste it at all.  Don't bother getting the expensive book with these hidden veggie recipes, they are completely googleable, or just cheat and add your spinach to a box mix, it worked perfectly.  Don't have time to blend the veggies and freeze them into ice cube trays?  It really is not that hard, but no worries, I know some of us are kitchen challenged, check your freezer aisle and baby food aisle you can find most of what you need there already pureed.

Watching the video of the first time we met
Elora is still having times of grieving, mostly it seems to arise after a nap.  She just sits on my lap and cries broken hearted tears.  These last some times as much as a few hours.  Nothing I could do seemed to help her come through the tears any faster or smoother.  I was pretty much resigned to just waiting them out when I got the idea to show her the video of our first moments together.  We were very lucky that her nanny was with us for the pass off that day.  Although the video is of us, you can hear nanny say (in Chinese) this is your mama and your baba, she goes on to tell Elora she is going to live with us and verbally walks her through this scary transition.  It worked!  Nothing else on the planet has ever worked, but mid ear piersing sob she stoped dead at the sound of nanny's voice.  She listened, we played it again, we looked at pictures of nanny and mama and Elora together smiling. The episode was over. Just like that.  What a great relife it was to both of us that I could show her I knew why she was sad and that I could help her remember.  We are using this regularly now, each time with a great success. Technology is such an amazing thing.  At the time we could only choose to film or photograph our first meeting, because we use our camera as a camcorder.  I decided on film since I worried about the flash bugging her.  So glad we did, this is such an invaluble thing to have, her nanny's voice right there on demand full of love and reashuring when ever we need it.  So thankful for this. 
p.s. we just took screen shots of the HD video that are the photos you have seen on this blog of that day.  A small compromise is the photo quality, but well worth it.

Just a cute photo, look I have pigtails!!


Theresa Self said...

So happy you two are having wonderful snuggle times! Your son sounds exactly like mine when it comes to eating. I laughed when i read your comment on being a short order cook. Isn't it funny how things change once you have children. i vowed never to be a Mcdonalds mom I believe my words were, "I will never feed my children Mcdonalds food" Boy did I have to eat those words : )