Thursday, November 17, 2011

In our new home...

We're here in Maryland! We still have no internet at home so I haven't had time to post pictures of our new house yet. And it's been a crazy week, trying to unpack and adjust to Steve's new commute and schedule. But we're blessed in many ways, and will write more soon!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Picky Ethan Prays

Ethan has given us trouble over food for a long time now. When everyone else is happily eating, he complains about the "yuck" food. I've tried all kinds of reactions and strategies, but here he is, almost 5 years old and still as finicky as ever.

Tonight Mimi had made a new recipe, and it was completely child-friendly, healthful and tasty. Ethan rejected it, as usual, without even tasting it. I decided to be extra-strong. I told him that not only would he not get any crackers or the candy he'd been told he could eat after dinner, but I said he'd also not get anything else to eat later in the evening, not even fruit. And while he didn't seem to care about all that, I added that he couldn't get down from the table either, though his siblings were watching the last few minutes of a Magic School Bus video begun earlier.

He was not a happy camper. He cried and pleaded, but I stood strong. I made small goals he could easily accomplish in order to get one cracker at a time as rewards. But he still complained and refused. I left the room to get other stuff done, and after being called back numerous times for him to plead further with me, I told him to only call me again if he was ready for me to watch him eat his bites (to verify he deserved the cracker).

I was gone again for a few minutes and wasn't happy to hear my name called out again. This time he said that he wanted to tell me two things, whispered in my ear. His first whispered phrase was, "I love you." And his second was, "I prayed to God to help me eat my food."

And wouldn't you know it, he ate that dinner! Not every bite, and not enough to get his piece of candy. But almost all of it, which was enough for him to get some nutrition, not have an empty tummy, and to be rewarded with a few crackers. And best of all, it was because of sweet prayer!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Things are Changing...

Steve got the job at Georgetown University, and we're moving to Capitol Heights, Maryland (D.C. area) in just 11 days! The Center for Contemporary Arab Studies (CCAS) at Georgetown has offered Steve the job of "multi-media editor," which will be a full-time, 9-5 job, and which will support him in his endeavor to begin PhD research this January (long-distance through Exeter University). We're all very pleased, as you can imagine! It seems to be a great fit for Steve's skills and interests, and will also finally give us a chance to grow some roots. Who'd have thought we'd be planting ourselves in Washington, D.C.?

Also, Ethan's speech evaluation testing is finally done and we had the official meeting today, determining where he'd go from here. He's been "diagnosed" with Speech-Language Impairment, which means we'll be able to go to any school district in the U.S. and get speech therapy provided for him. The therapists admit that Ethan is a unique case -- he tested at above-average in his understanding and expression, and average in his articulation, and yet while speaking longer sentences, he can only be understood about 50% of the time, at best.

Steve starts work on November 7, but we don't move into our new home until November 13. So he'll be staying with friends for his first work week, and then coming back to Lexington (3 1/2 - 4 hour drive) to help us move. We're grateful to have found a house already which we'll rent for 12 months, and then re-evaluate our situation. Next we need to find a church!

Though we're excited about all the upcoming opportunities, we're also sad to leave this beautiful location and dear friends and family. I still enjoy every time I drive through the abundant trees, with wooded hills in the not-too-far distance, and past green pastures and grazing livestock. City will be a bit of a shock to my system, but at least it's an American city, complete with public libraries, free museums and a zoo!