Welcome!! Grab a cup of coffee and visit with us! We hope you enjoy our story! (((HUGS)))

Welcome!! Grab a cup of coffee and visit with us! We hope you enjoy our story! (((HUGS)))

Monday, June 29, 2015

Reason number FIVE why I LOVE Bulgaria!

Last but not least!
 Paul Follower. We call him Pauly. Pauly is our only Bulgarian with blue eyes and blonde hair!  He looks as American as apple pie! 
Pauly has Autism. A common thing that happens to children with Down Syndrome who suffer trauma. Pauly had heart surgery as a baby. He was in an orphanage. The orphanage was very poor. There was no momma or pappa to love and hold him through it. He recovered physically but not mentally.

 We adore him. He hates to have his picture taken. Kind of a silly thing because he LOVES attention. Pauly will find humor in his mind no matter what we are doing! It will send him into fits of giggles! We can't help but laugh with him! Unless it is bed time and he keeps his brothers up!

 He works so hard to understand and do what we ask. But every once in a while he decides for himself what he should be doing! Those times he will either go upstairs all on his own to....? Or he will scoot down stairs to find me!

We may never know what he is thinking. But he is the sweetest, gentlest boy. He doesn't argue. He always shares. He lets the nurse take his blood with minimal "squeeks" in protest. 

So those are the FIVE reasons I LOVE Bulgaria! Noah, Moses, Jacob, Julius & Pauly! Thank You Bulgaria! Thank You!
Thank You God for Blessing the union of 5 precious Bulgarian boys and our family! We Praise You!! We sing Your Praises with our boys!

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Reason number FOUR why I LOVE Bulgaria!

Julius Believer age 8. 
His name comes from Acts 27 and the Roman Centurion who helped the Apostle Paul. We knew we were naming one of our boys "Paul" after my mom's best friend since high school- my "Auntie Lena". (Pauline) Who was Greek. After reading Acts the name Julius seemed to be the answer to what our 2nd son's name would be. And we LOVE his name. Altho he is often more like Julius the monkey! ;o) LOL!

 Julius is such a handsome boy! He's very smart too, which often gets him into trouble- like "curiosity killed the cat". ;o)
He was so tiny when he first came. Now he is quite tall for having Down Syndrome and he is "built" slimmer. His legs are not as short as the other boys legs, compared to their torso.
So he can run like the wind! LOL!
He is the 2nd youngest boy of the five, but the tallest.

He has the confidence of knowing he is smart! So he doesn't easily get offended when he's corrected. He often challenges the rules, A LOT!!! Good thing we are crazy about him! LOL!

 Moses LOVES to "help". But Julius LOVES to do tasks, to have responsibility. Just tell him to "set the table" and he is in heaven! It may be a little unusual or not complete. But he feels great joy in doing "it"! Each year he can do more and more. He is going to go far if he can learn to stay on task and not let his curiosity get the best of him!
Sometimes he can be mean to his brothers out of boredom. Eventually after being tripped one too many times by Julius, Moses will now go back and hit him!!!

He makes my heart melt! He is a momma's boy through and through. Always kisses and hugs for me! And he LOVES to sit with me doing learning projects. He gives everything we do together his full attention.
All of my boys from Bulgaria are filled with LOVE! Just like the Bulgarians who allowed us to adopt them!

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Reason number THREE of why I LOVE Bulgaria!

 My beautiful Bulgarian son Jacob Angelov now 10 years old. (he is 1 month younger than Mosie)
Jacob has confidence, chutzpah, cockiness and a stubborn iron will. All strong Bulgarian manly traits! ;o)
Jacob wants no part of dressing in his costume celebrating his heritage! He protested loudly!!

 Crocodile tears faded and he is curious as to......why?.......are we doing this? LOL!

 Jacob fiercely fights for his independence. He does what he wants, when he wants. He does not like compromise, and he prefers to be alone. In fact he thinks he's invisible??!! Poor guy! We can and do see him. More than he'd like. 

And there's no way we are giving up on him! :o) 
We are so proud of how far he's come!

 Ooopsie! A little melt down here! ;o)

This is how he prefers to stand up, without holding on to anything. When he came home his legs were thin and weak. His left leg was much smaller. As he grows and puts on weight his left leg has gained tremendous strength. He has learned balance and he works on it every day! Taking baby steps. But not walking.

 It was his idea. And when it's his idea he gives it 100%.

Isaiah adores Jacob. Isaiah doesn't have a favorite sibling, but he LOVES spending time with Jacob. 
At lunch yesterday Jacob picked up Isaiah's piece of cake at the dinner table to throw it on the floor! Jacob is very practical, he had his own cake, there was no need for another piece near by. Huh?!

Isaiah had to leave the room to laugh hysterically! He thought it was incredibly funny. I however did not. I firmly told Jakie that it was not nice!! Jakie tunes me out. And then I watched him like a hawk. Of course he was mad about the extra attention from me! So he pouted. I was not in the least bit surprised by Jakie's actions- he is that mischievous! But I wish he'd at least try to be nicer!?

And then it was bed time! And Mr Jacob was thrilled to remove the outfit, get into his scooby-do pjs and sleep sack to get ready for bed! So he gave us all his beautiful happy face, the face we live for!

Friday, June 26, 2015

Reason number TWO of FIVE reasons I LOVE Bulgaria!

My second oldest son from Bulgaria. Moses Chosen. You can see his picture (upper right of my side bar) when Tom saw him at 15 pounds and 7 years old. He is now 10 years old. He is the smallest of his 5 brothers. But he is the first to "help". He is the "biggest" in ability and possibility if that makes sense! :o)
Above he is dressing in the spare bedroom with Isaiah, so the girls can't see! LOL! ;o) 
We never in a million years thought he'd be able to walk. He was so weak he could barely sit. After his tonsil/adenoid surgery he wanted to die. He had little will to live. He had nearly died the year before in Bulgaria, when we were bringing home Julius and Pauly. 

Such an incredibly handsome young man! 
It takes 2 nurses, mom and the Dr to hold him down to take blood. He is stronger than people realize! I tell them that's how he survived.
He is so smart. He has learned to trust those who can help him get what he wants. He does get frustrated when they don't "listen" to him. Because he can't speak, too many people will not watch, or pay attention to his body language and they turn away dismissing him. That frustrates him AND us!!

We've realized when we are in public with the boys that the world is so full of electronics and moves so fast, that the face to face time the boys need is almost non-existent. Unless they visit us in our environment. Other wise the boys are expected to speak up or move on. There is little patience for them. :o(

So far Moses has learned that having us there to speak up for him helps a lot. He understands he needs us for that. It's not the same as needing us as his family, because he'll never understand what family is. But it is the gift of a bond with him he allows us. He's not like Noah who adjusts and LOVES whoever he is with, and whoever LOVES Noah. Moses is more discriminating. If you ignore him, Moses remembers. But then you can always apologize and he will forgive you! :o) 

How do I thank Bulgaria for my five priceless gifts. How do I repay them for my sons, their sons, our boys. I tell my boys every day that their heritage is one of LOVE and beauty, gifted from God.
My five Bulgarian Angels ;o)

Thursday, June 25, 2015

One of the FIVE reasons I LOVE Bulgaria

 Look up the word LOVE in the dictionary, and you will see a picture of Noah. My oldest son from Bulgaria, now 12 years old.
Noah is only capable of loving. He is a gift from God and Bulgaria.

 Bulgaria was not a Country that I previously knew much about, I'm ashamed to say. But now it is on my mind constantly. Because we LOVE Bulgaria. We LOVE the people. We LOVE the country side. We LOVE five of their most precious citizens, who are now American as well.
Now we listen to Bulgarian music. We keep updated about their news. We cook recipes from our Bulgarian cook books. :o) We decorate with Bulgarian pottery and beautiful Bulgarian crafts we find.
We pray for them every day.

 You don't have to tell us how smart Bulgarians are, or how beautiful they look, or how kind hearted they are. We know first hand.
We know their hearts. They bless our lives each and every day.

I only wish they could all see how much we LOVE them.
How much we respect them.
How much their carefully placed trust in us is cherished by us.
Because we have five very big reasons to LOVE them.
This very handsome young man is reason number 1.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

You can never have too many boys! ;o)

Julius left, Moses right. The play house. It has been here on the deck since 1995. A few years later we got the sun setter so we could actually survive the heat out here without melting in the sun. ;o)
Inside the play house the empty plastic bucket from pork rinds. Julius has a fascination with containers, filling them, getting his hand stuck in them. :o) Taking them everywhere.

Years ago we were often at the lake when weather was good here. Since MA was sick we can't go as often.

We don't make the boys wear shoes. They have learned to walk, balance and stand much easier without them. We keep the deck clean. Noah's feet are pretty darn cute!
He wears his shoes in the yard, or on outings.

Julius pretending to wash his hands in the play sink. 

Inside our house after meals the boys line up to wash hands standing on a stool. It's their favorite part of meal times!! Water!!
You might see Mercy in the background (left) has shoes on. She wears a path down on the deck running back and forth. So to keep blisters away we put shoes on her. People with Sotos have soft skin. She bruises/cuts easily. And she has a blood disorder.

She is very interested in Chinese Jump Rope! ;o)

At 5 a.m. most people wake to the sound of the birds singing. At our house Mercy YELLS as LOUD AS SHE CAN!! Telling us the sun is up, NOW "GET ME OUT OF BED!!" Of course she can't talk so it sounds more like a crying/tantrum. Some mornings we wonder what the neighbors think in this very quiet neighborhood as the sound travels. I ask her to be quiet and sometimes she stops- but sometimes she doesn't stop. She is developmentally about 4, so a little stubborn! 
I let her know she'll be last to get up if she doesn't quiet down. 
We don't mind her making noise, talking, singing etc but YELLING is highly discouraged!
I have seen her 3 big sisters run to my bed to catch a few more winks (after they shut the bed room door behind them) if she refuses to stop.

We don't take it personally.

And we do not get up until 6:00 a.m.!! We need our sleep!
 Julius "on the phone"! LOL! He really doesn't understand phones. The toy phones play music and for the life of him he can't figure out who is talking to him on the real phone!

 But he enjoys accommodating Isaiah for the photos!

 And as he snoops around he seems to think he can't put it down now! LOL!

 The bigger they grow the cuter they get! So much personality!

 Jacob decides to come in and "see" what's going on.

Did I ever dare dream that I would be so blessed with so many handsome boys?!! I know my Mercy is as cute as cute can be, but you just can never have too many little boys! LOL! 

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

The Cafe Deck part 2

Julius is looking like such a big boy now at 8 yrs old. We have scheduled his psych appt. for August for ADHD medication.
Please pray for our little guy that this helps his impulse control that only gets harder as he gets bigger. We can handle it at home, but in public he has waaaaay toooo many temptations.
I LOVE this boy so much, I can not remember a day he was not my son.
It was 89 degrees so we cut hair! :o)

 Mosie, 10 yrs old last Feb. Oh the JOY he brings us. Oh the sweetness of kissing those cheeks! He is unbelievably bright. He wants to help everyone with everything.
He "worries" when his brothers aren't eating independently and tries to help. So we sit him here.

This is also a good spot where Mercy won't trip over him. If Merc (yes we call her "mers") runs she does not watch for people!! And she loves running the length (25') of the deck back and forth. I'm glad because she can burn off energy without running away!

Mercy and Pauly will see the psych too. Pauly for anxiety. Mercy for SIBs and difficulty sleeping. Our new pediatrician HAS his own psych! Woo-Hoo! And if you go to the clinic you don't need to see the pediatrician to see her first! But she is booked till August.

 Nope, Mosie is not gonna eat till Isaiah stops the picture taking! LOL!!

My beautiful helpers. Their hearts are filled with LOVE! Jacob and Kitty here. Lysa further down.

 My very favorite picture!! Everyone seated eating! :o) Our youngest BLESSINGS all in a row!

(Mercy's leotard over clothes to deter diaper digging.......sigh)
These benches are the best thing ever! :o) Super easy to clean up too!

Moses still learning. But doing better every day. He hates making a "mess" so he welcomes help. He uses the napkin multiple times independently! ;o)

It's a little tricky helping him in the high chair. When inside he sits in a booster chair. 

We are so excited to have new health insurance allowing us to see our "old" Dr at her new location. And to have access to psych visits, before we did not. It is all costing more than we had hoped BUT we are so excited to move forward with the medical stuff again!!
Please join us in REJOICING with God today and everyday!!!
((((BIG HUGS))))

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

The Cafe deck

 The weather was beautiful. We had the awning out to keep the sun off of the boys. This high chair was donated to us. It has always been kept outside even by the previous family. So the weather has stained it. But believe me Isaiah cleaned this thoroughly with scrubbing bubbles. 

I would have helped but I broke my foot on Saturday.

Moses has transitioning anxiety. He still fears going outside, going into strange buildings etc. He does like to get in the van to drive. But he still is haunted by spending 7 years in one building on one floor.

 I love these benches. If you put them together they make 1 picnic table. But that size overwhelms and distracts the boys. When they sit this way you can swing the table over to make a bench, or a half table like this. The boys love the half table size. They can also watch the cars drive by here! On the other side of the street is a park that we watch festivities at too. The boys feel safer watching from a distance.
(Jacob right, Noah and Lysa left)

Last year they were eating on a little tikes picnic table. Look how much they've grown! Jacob's feet touch below! And in the bottom photo you can see Noah is built so "solid" now!

                                         Mosie being shy!

 Isaiah was trying to catch cars in each photo too - crazy kid!

 They really don't enjoy having photos taken, but they are good about it. Mercy throws tantrums and runs!!

 Julius and Pauly were done eating and playing in the play house on the deck.
To the right in the back you can see a beautiful gate my Son in Love made for each end of the deck so boys can't escape! Dan even checked them for wear and tear on our Family Friday dinner night last week. He is such a blessing!

My helpers Lysa in pink, Kitty in blue. All four helpers (Isaiah & Faith too!) help the boys with hearts filled with LOVE! 
The boys and Mercy motivate the best in all of us.
God is good!