Journey to Kazakhstan

All about my international adoption from Kazakhstan

Archive for August, 2008

My “Journey to Kazakhstan’s” wordle

I saw this on another person’s website and had to try it.  I really liked how it came out.  All the important things popped up big.


Karina bobina fee fi fofina!!!! KARINA !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hi everyone!  So sorry for not posting recently.  Karina and I have been busy busy busy!!!!  So much has happened!  Karina is growing like a weed…she is losing her little belly (Mommy is sad) and getting taller and taller.  She is learning to say I,  instead of Karina,  when referring to herself.  Lately, the behavior issues are all about the tone of voice she speaks to me in.  We are working on using a normal tone of voice and not yelling, or whining, or giving me the eyes.  Who knew a four year old could have so much sass in her?  The best part is that she is starting to get it – we are still at the beginning part of learning to speak politely even when Mommy is asking you to get in your pajamas, or pick up your toys, etc. but I have high hopes because each step of the way when I asked her to change her behavior and reinforced that request she has met the challenge…at most it took about four weeks of consistency and voila!!!  I had a better behaved child.  So, I am looking forward to the point where she fully understands it is not okay to yell at Mommy.  Recently, after repeatedly telling her, “don’t talk back” she asked me what talking back was….I gave her a few examples from earlier in the morning and she said…”Aaaaah”  It is so hard not to laugh sometimes.  I love this little girl dearly!!!  She is the sun, moon, and stars.  I really think she is incredibly smart.  So inventive and creative.  Today she was telling me she was hungry and wanted an apple.  We only had an orange at work for a snack so she said to me, “Then I eat Mommy.”  And she started nibbling on my arm.  When  a coworker who was sitting next to me started laughing she leaned over and then said, “I eat Carol” and started snacking on her arm too.  We were both laughing hysterically.  There are so many points throughout the day that I laugh laugh laugh because of Karina’s incredible sense of humor.  For instance, lately Karina is hooked on The Big Comfy Couch.  She loves this show – originally I only had one VHS tape and she watched it so many times over that I went on Ebay and bought 13 tapes with two shows on them each.  One show is about time outs.   In it the dolly named Molly and the cat named Snickelfritz both get time outs and the way they have a time out is to have a scarf put over their heads…we do it differently in the Sharify house LOL – anyway so a few nights ago Karina is having her nightly bath and she has her plastic baby doll in there and the big rubber ducky, along with a tub full of other toys.  So I walk in to the bathroom and she says that Duck hit baby.  I said Oh that is not good.  Then she says, Yeah, duck hit baby and now has time out.  I look over and see that on the edge of the tub she has put the rubber ducky on his sponge and put her little orange washcloth over his head.  I am cracking up inside but trying to keep a straight face on the outside.  Stuff like this happens like ten times a day at a minimum.  For instance, last week we realized she had grown tall enough to use the big wheel that she had gotten from the Giles Family and she was on it riding around like crazy.  Well she got to one point and stopped and was sitting there with her arms draped over the handlebars, her baseball cap on sideways, and her baby doll riding on the back behind her and I was doubled over laughing….she looked like a mini cute version of a biker riding a Harley.  It was classic.

I recently started going to school again, working at a stressful job while raising Karina.  It is CRAZY how busy we are.  I feel like we are living our lives with wheels instead of feet as we are always on the go.  Fortunately, Karina is really the type of child who thrives on the action.  She just loves to be going new places and doing new things all the time.  So now in the AM we go to Mommy’s school for about an hour and Karina goes to the college’s day care for an hour.  SHE LOVES IT!!!!  I practically have to drag her out of there each day.  Obviously, she is more than ready for a more consistent preschool experience for longer time periods.  Of course, Mommy is not ready and never will be.  It just bums me out so much that some perfect stranger is going to get to spend time and experience all the lovely things about my little girl.  Very depressing.  And she is so much fun.  That is why it is so important for me to be sure about who is watching my child.  I know all children are precious but I am tasked with watching out for this particular child and so I want to know that whoever is watching her understands what an exceptional being she is and nurtures that exceptional being doesn’t neglect her in any way, doesn’t spoil her in any way, doesn’t get manipulated by her in any way, encourages all the things that will help her in life and doesn’t encourage the things that will harm her.  Don’t I sound fanatical?  But the truth is I know that every person in the world can always do better in life when they have a strong advocate, call it a parent, a family member, a friend, for some of us it can be a great teacher….whoever that person is that looks out for you.  I look back at my own life and think boy if someone had just cared enough to point out why doing A) would have been so much of a better choice than doing B).  I think I would have listened to reason and logic even as a teenager or young adult or maybe I wouldn’t have but it would have been nice to have someone there on my side…so to speak.  I want to be that person that is on her side…always…and I want her to be able to reach her full potential and have an easy and good life.  For what is the use and purpose of experience and hard times if you can’t illuminate the path for someone else so that they don’t have to experience the same things? 

Karina charms everyone she meets…in fact…I have to tell you honestly that I truly question the character of those people that don’t find her wonderful.  I know this sounds prejudicial but the fact is I have seen her charm a couple that I know that never wanted children and always were really negative about having children, perfect strangers I meet every day, even people with children of their own.  Gosh my kid is awesome!!  When I do come across a person that doesn’t seem to like her I really wonder about them….and then I keep my distance.  She is my walking litmus test.  In fact, I have to tell you how worried I was in the beginning that maybe she had attachment issues because she was so darn charming.  I mean you read all this stuff before adopting and the red flags associated with certain behaviors and so you kind of are looking to see if your child is displaying any of the signs that would indicate they have a physical or psychological disorder.  But it was hard to worry about it for too long because Karina was so affectionate and would stare into my eyes for a decent amount of time.  Now there is no doubt in my mind at all because I kid you not I must get 40 kisses a day from this cute little munchkin.  For someone that had so much attention and affection to lavish on a child I am sure getting more than my fair share back each and every day.  She is a hugger, squeezer, kisser, so much affection.  I hope that it is my tendency to shower her with it that has sparked in her the desire to return it. 

One of Karina’s favorite things to do is play with her baby dolls.  I must admit she has at least 8 of them at this point.  I favor baby dolls vs. barbie dolls for many reasons.  One is that I want her to play practice her mothering skills.  I want her to learn through play to model the behavior a mother would have caring for one baby vs. the behavior a caretaker charged with the task of caring for 12 babies at a time displays.  And she is so loving and caring of all of her baby dolls and stuffed animals.  She dresses them each morning (only one not all eight) and takes that baby to work with her.  If we go in a store she wants to bring the baby inside and if I say no she tells me the baby will cry in the car, she takes the all plastic ones into the bathtub with her at night and washes them, she undresses them and puts them in pajamas.  Last night she handed me her little fuzzy stuffed puppy dog and told me he needed to be put to bed in the little doll house I had gotten for her.  I complied and tucked doggie into bed while she changed baby doll into her pjs.  Recently, I went to this giant yard sale they have every year in my town and found four quart sized ziploc bags each stuffed full of baby doll clothes.  Each one was $2.  Now baby doll(s) have a wardrobe to be envied.  I need to go to the store and purchase one of those cardboard chest of drawers just so all the baby doll clothes can be put away neatly.