Hello! Well, we survived a fairly lengthy trip back to good old Illinois to visit both our families. We've actually been back for over a week now, but it has taken us awhile to get back into the swing of things. We were gone for 8 days (that is counting travel days...we drove), which I think was about 3 days too many for Ben. His mood steadily declined over the last few days of the trip and hadn't improved much since we'd been home.....until today. Today he is at least becoming recognizable as the child I know. I love him with all my heart but the last several days have been very, very rough. Hopefully we've turned a corner and Ben will be back to his old self soon. Although stress-inducing at times, it was soooo nice to be back home. We were able to enjoy the company of family and friends which is always a blessing!
Here are some pics:
I love this picture of Ben and his cousin, Ava....
Ben with cousin Reagan:
And my personal favorite....Ben swimming at Grandma and Grandpa Reynolds' house. He LOVED it even though the water was freezing (only 78 degrees at one point). His little mouth was chattering like crazy, but he still had a great time.
In other news, we celebrated the one year anniversary of the day Ben's adoption became 100% complete. We bought him a little play kitchen as a gift to celebrate the day. Whenever he goes to the speech pathologist, he always plays with the toy kitchen they have, so I figured he would enjoy one here at home. It was a BIG hit. Poor Greg had to assemble it though. I had no idea it would be in so many tiny pieces. It took him a couple of hours to get it together, but I know Ben appreciates it :-)
It is finally cooler around here today. The weather in Illinois was nice and cool the entire time we were there, so I was hopeful that when we returned to Nebraska, it would be the same way. I was wrong. It has been wretchedly humid and still above normal temps for the past week. Today, however, has been beautiful!! We went to the outdoor mall this morning and it was in the mid-70's!!! I actually wore jeans. It was magical. Although the days have been hot (with the exception of today), the evening temps are starting to back off a little and I can even detect the tiniest hint of fall in the evening air. I love when that starts to happen. The "creeping in" of fall is one of my favorite things about living in the midwest. For me, fall has always stirred up something in me that makes me feel like anything is possible. I know it's weird, but it happens every year. I think it's because this is the time of year that school starts and I was always one of those kids who looked forward to a new school year; a new year of adventures and endless possibilities. I guess this time of year just takes me back there for awhile. It's a nice feeling.
I hope, wherever you are, you're feeling nice too :-)