Friday, October 10, 2008

2 Weeks Home with Ellie

It is hard to believe that we have already been home for 2 weeks with our Ellie. She is doing so well that I can say that this has really been very easy - so far. Her personality is much calmer than Lilly's which is a very good thing. She is a sweet, easy-going child until she doesn't get her way. Then the head starts shaking "no" and the hands start pushing you away. However, those "fits" are decreasing in frequency and duration. She loves to eat, is a deep sleeper, and is a smart little girl. She is catching on to things very quickly. Ellie is trying to say lots of words and already can point to her basic body parts in English- eyes, ears, nose, etc. She has learned to do some simple puzzles and loves to have a book read. She already tries to "read" because she will talk the whole time I read although I'm trying to teach her to listen to the story. The other children all adore her except little Lilly. She lost her baby spot so naturally she is having the most difficult time, but there are really sweet moments shared by her and Ellie. There just aren't very many of them yet, but I know it will get better each and every day.

We have been to see Ellie's cardiologist and the Cleft Clinic. Her VSD/ASD heart repair was done well in China, and she does not have to go back to the heart doctor until 2010- praise God! The cleft clinic visit also went well. Ellie is scheduled for her palate repair on 10/28 at 7:30 AM. She will also get ear tubes at that time. I've never asked for advice here before, but if there are any cleft moms out there reading, please share the most important thing we should know before her surgery. Any tips on the 2 week liquid diet would be appreciated too. The speech therapist said Ellie could have applesauce and pudding, but the doctor said "liquid". I guess I'll know more when we are preparing for discharge. All in all, we are doing well and praising God for bringing this sweet little girl into our lives.

This is my very favorite picture of Ellie thus far. She is such a cutie and has a beautiful smile- when she chooses to show it to the camera! Much better than the next picture.

I tried to get some cute pictures of Ellie and of Ellie and Lilly. Ellie isn't real cooperative with picture- taking yet as she is always looking around. I guess she still has so many new things to see that she is easily distracted. This was the best one. I'll keep trying. I'm taking her tonight to Olan Mills for her 2 year old picture. I hope that she will sit and not be afraid, but if she is we will just try again later.

At first Ellie was terrified of the swing as Lilly was last summer. It only took Ellie a few days and then she was ready to give it a try and now she loves swinging.

Ellie really having fun with Lilly in the Cozy Coupe. The little girls are starting to get along more often although Lilly is still adjusting to having to share everything and more importantly, everybody with Ellie.

Everybody having fun in the sandbox. Well, actually, I should say that they were just posing for a cute picture! Shelby and Katie didn't stay there long! We have had this turtle box since Shelby was 18 months old.

Ellie has learned quickly how to put the shapes in the shape sorter bucket, but of course, her favorite part is using the bucket for a hat.

This was on Saturday, Ellie's very first day at home. She thought the Cozy Coupe was fun, and Lilly loved holding the balloons until she accidentally let them go- oopps!


Cousin Sheri said...

I'd been unpatiently waiting for news and pics, knowing you were very busy. Ellie looks like she can 'ham it up' like Lilly when she wants to! Love to all!
Oh, get on the webboard and send a shout to Melissa Francis about surgery.

Sharon said...

Okay, Jan, where are the "thumbs up" pictures??? LOL Everytime I took a picture of Ellie she did it. The pictures Lilly took of her are very cute. I will send them to you.

I'm so glad that Ellie's heart repair was done well in China! Praise God! Bailey is looking forward to Lilly and Shelby coming to spend the day with her when Ellie goes for her surgery.

My best advice for YOU when Ellie has her surgery is to take several shirts that you can change and something like a burp cloth. Ellie will want you to hold her and she will have some blood coming out of her mouth after the surgery. I was so thankful my friend Rachelle told me to do this. I never would have thought about it.

Ellie's doctors will tell you exactly what she can have to eat. After a couple of days it isn't hard to figure out. Vienna sausage was at the top of Brinley's list of foods she could have when she was switched over to soft foods. Soft scrambled eggs were Bailey's favorite. I would put things in my food processor and turn them to mush just so that they could have some food with flavor instead of the same thing over and over. Bailey loves ketchup so I let her put ketchup on anything she could eat if she wanted it. She was a happy girl!

See you soon!


Hayley said...

Glad to see Ellie is doing well.

Kim said...

We are praising God for Ellie's smooth transition to life with her forever family!! She is so blessed to be a Bryant! We are praying for Lilly and her adjustment to a new sister. We love you all!
The Sylvias

The Smith's said...

It is still amazing to me how much Ellie and Noah favor one another. It looks like her and Lilly are getting along very well.

Love the updates and pictures.


Beth and Ryan said...

Glad all is well in your home! Your family is beautiful. I have commented before. My inlaws met you in the airport the day you left for China. We followed your journey and have enjoyed doing so. We adopted our daughter, Mason-Kate in March. She had her cleft repair surgery in May. She was on a liquid diet for 6 weeks. Miserable but not unbearable. We did a lot of pudding and yogurt with milk added to make it more liquidy. MK wasn't allowed to have anything with any sort of texture(applesauce, grits, oatmeal, etc.) until 4 weeks post op. Please feel free to email me at with questions. I would take vaseline or aquaphor for her lips. MK's were so dry and cracked. Good luck!

Danny and Rebecca said...

Love the updated pictures and info on Ellie!! Praying for your family with Fulton's kidney stone and Ellie's upcoming surgery.
love ya,