July 31, 2011

Post placement report

July 27th marked one year ago for us that a judge in Kazahkstan agreed to let us adopt Laura. 10 days after the judge said, "da" we were offically declared Laura's parents. Due to passport delays, Laura actually couldn't leave the counrty until 9 long weeks later.

We recently did our first post placement report with a social worker here in NC. These annual reports are done each year until Laura turns 18. A social worker came out to the house we are temporarly living in, and interviewed us all on how Laura is doing. Of course talking about Laura's JulyAAs we went through this July I couldn't help but think of

July 30, 2011

A letter to my Dear Leg #1

Dear Leg #1,

Thank you so much for your service. I am sorry to say, I have outgrown you. I will always remember you as my very first prosthetic leg. Thank you for helping me learn to walk, jump and skip! I had fun doing so many new things for my very first time while wearing you, things like jumping off of stairs, jumping on Mom and Dad's bed, riding my very first amusement ride, going to school, playing at the playground, fishing, taking my dog for a walk, grocery shopping and even dancing!

Sorry I kind of scratched you up a bit and colored on you. We did have a lot of fun!


April- bright, clean new leg.

April 5th. Learning how to walk up the stairs.

2 weeks after getting her first leg, Laura did a little "creative drawing" on it.

 "Look what I can do!"

July- hey, your leg shrunk!

Leg #1 drying on the handy dandy gate, outside.


This was Laura's idea. She is such a goof-ball!

Hopefully leg #2 will be ready next month! Hopefully leg #1 will survive that long : )

Fishing and crabbing

Laura's been home 9 months now. It's hard to believe just 9 short months have gone by! It seems like she's always been a part of our family! Seems like she's always been walking and skipping her way into the hearts of everyone she meets!

Recently, Laura answered a big question Patrick and I had been discussing. What was the question you ask? The question is: Where will we live once Patrick retires from the military? Now you're probably wondering how a 4 year old could answer such a question right? Well, we were fishing and crabbing down at the local dock the other night and Laura says, "I'm going to take my kids fishing here one day." So you see? Our little Russian princessa is a natural North Carolinian at heart! She loves fishing and crabbing! Alex does too! We go almost every night. But wait! There is more to the story! After she told me she'd like to bring her children fishing and crabbing I asked her how many children she planned on having. After all, as a future grandmother, I should prepare myself right? Hang on for the answer folks, you may be shocked. Laura informed me she's planning on having 9 boys and 1 girl! Whew! So, I'm thinking that Patrick and I better seriously consider retiring right here in NC. That way we'll be sure to see the 10 grandkids from Laura in addition to the ones Eric and Alex give us. Guess I better convince the boys to settle here too.

I forgot to mention our beautiful lab, Daisy. Daisy loves fishing and crabbing too!

I love you, Dad!

Notice the beautiful Sponge Bob bandaid on Laura's leg. More on that in another post.

July 28, 2011

Happy 17th Anniversary

We recently celebrated our 17th wedding anniversary. The boys watched Laura and we snuck out for a late dinner date.

July 15, 2011

Shriners #9- Greenville, SC

We recently moved from VA to NC. The closest Shriners to us now is in Greenville, SC.

I noticed Laura seems to be outgrowing her prosthetic leg. How could this be? She's only had it a few months?! Sure enough, Mama was right! I took her to Shriners and she needs a whole new leg! Laura was casted again and had the best time meeting her favorite cousin, Beth! What a wonderful a couple days we spent in SC. with my sister and my nephew and niece who joined us.

Laura's leg will be built and she'll have a fitting next month. Hopefully, Laura will be playing in her new leg by the end of August. : )

 Laura with cousin Beth.

 We called this the "Train Ride". Evan was so good with the girls.

Our future triathletes!

Leg Casting #2

Let me just say right now, this visit went way better than the last time Laura was casted! If you look at the pictures you'll see why! LOL!

The girls are as pretty as they are silly!

This is one of my favorite pictures from the day. Mr. Ray was so sweet with the girls. He was silly and explained everything so well. I asked him if he ever had an audience quite like today (notice the audience on the seat in the background).

"I've never had so many pairs of eyes watching me cast a patient before" said Mr. Ray.

"This is going to tickle a little."

We go back in about a month for a fitting. Laura should have her new leg by the end of August.

Playing at the Children's Museum

 The girls entertain themselves the next morning on the way to the museum.

Is this spiderman?

A little over a year ago, I met this amazing girl for the very first time. I knew after spending less than a week with her that nothing would stop her from doing ANYTHING she sets her mind to!

I spent so much time thinking and worrying durring the paper-chase part of the adoption. I had so many questions, how would she get around? Would she be able to use a prosthetic leg? How would a prosthetic leg work? Would a prosthetic leg work for her condition? Would she walk funny? Is anything wrong with her hips? Does she even want to walk or does she just sit still? etc... etc...

Did I mention her middle name is FAITH! We had faith in this little girl and she obviously has faith in herself!

Laura, You are AMAZING!

Evan helps Laura get down.

more coming....

July 4th- One Year Ago Today!!

 This was taken July 4, 2010, the day we met Laura.

One year later!

I posted these on Face Book and here are some of the comments:

    Amy Hittle We met our Princessa one year ago today!

  • Kathleen Shell Hodge She's was right - you did teach her how to find her beautiful smile. When we were talking about taking pictures she said you showed her how to make a beautiful smile. I'm betting that lesson was taught by example!
  • Penny Syracuse Evans What a difference a mommy can make! She doesn't look like the same child, Amy!
  • Karla Egan Wow! What a difference! Congrats!
  • Sharon Mahoney the 2 of you are beautiful....we miss you already
  •  Faith Michaels Watrous Look at that beautiful smile!! Now that's a little girl who knows what it's like to be truly loved :)
  • Sue Rupert What an amazing change in her countenance and Amy - you "glow"! Many blessings to you and your family!
Laura, I'm so happy you are enjoying being in your new family. Every night when we say prayers, you thank God for us and name each one of us (including our dog, Daisy). We love you so much and thank God for you too!  Love, Mama