Another thing that I am so happy about is her eye contact - she makes and holds great eye contact. She smiles and laughs when it's appropriate, which makes me think she does so on a regular basis. Someone is making her laugh. She is a happy girl. When they ask her if she's ready to go back to her group, she says no and looks at us. She's so smart. She doesn't talk at all, except yes and no, but understands everything. She nods her head appropriately, responds to commands appropriately, et cetera. She is EXACTLY like David was with his language. I think she will pick up on sign language very, very quickly. Also, having her adenoids removed should make a huge difference in her speech. Her tongue is out a lot to help her breathe, which makes speech development very tough. It's hard to talk with your tongue hanging out of your mouth. They asked us if we'd like to have her adenoids removed here or wait until we're home. Um, wait until we're home, thank you very much.
Her orphanage is over 60 miles from the city, and it takes at least 2 hours to get there. The traffic here is unreal. As a result, we haven't had any opportunity to do any sightseeing at all - just drive-bys in the car!
This is a series of smokestacks we pass daily.
We've been assured it's not a nuclear power plant.
I still wouldn't want to live in the apartments right next door.
We were in a different room today for our visit - the sensory room. It's a FANTASTIC play area! We were told that the children don't spend "a lot" of time in here, but get one on one and group therapy in this room. She obviously loved it. She's a huge fan of the slide and the ball pit. She and David will get along just fine.
She's chatting on the princess phone, running down a sensory mat.
She spent more time with Chris today. It seems the only man at the orphanage is the director, who I assume does not have much day to day interaction with the children. The caregivers are women, so warming up to Chris has taken a bit longer.
As you can see, not much longer. :)
She was cooking some food for him, and pouring him a drink. She plays very, very well. And she also cleaned up and put everything back exactly where she found it. She's so smart!
And this child loves a mirror!
It is uncanny to me how much like Jack she is. He is just going to LOVE her.
We were told today that there has never been an adoption from her orphanage. Ever. Not only that, there has never been a VISIT there. They didn't know where to put us because nobody has ever come to visit! That certainly explains why we were such a spectacle. And the translator told Chris his shirt today was "exotic"! We cracked up! I don't know if it was the short sleeves or the plaid. . .
It makes me so sad, but the people there want to change that. They asked us to photograph some other children they want to find homes for, which we are more than happy to do. It is such a good facility - clean, great grounds, a staff that obviously cares very much for the children, and they have lots of opportunities there. But it's not a family. A group of little boys, probably David and Henry's age, was walking to lunch today when we were leaving. They were holding hands two by two, and the whole group of them waved to me and called out "Mama!" over and over. It broke my heart. They have told us over and over how well Katie will do in a family. They have all looked at our photo album we brought for her and said how nice our house is, how fun our family looks, and how lucky she will be. I think we're the lucky ones! Tomorrow is our last visit, which makes me sad, but is SO much easier because of where she is. We have lots more photos on the other camera, but the battery died!