Thursday, June 21, 2012

A really big box

When we got the surprise gift of a wagon from the Wenatchee School District music teachers last week, the package came in a really big box that we were saving for a day when we needed a good distraction for TongJie.  Today was just such a day.  We went to Lincoln Rock State Park this morning, where I worked for 11 summers in a row as a park aide.  This is my first summer not working there and I kind of miss it.  I mean, I'm glad I get to be home with my family, but at the same time I miss the park because it was an awesome summer job and I just like Lincoln Rock a lot, plus the staff members were all really great people to work with.  So we went there this morning and got to visit with some of my former coworkers and we were especially glad to see George, the park manager and ranger who was my boss for all those years.  He was also one of me and Jeff's references when we were filling out all the paperwork for our adoption.  It was fun to talk to him and for him to get to meet TongJie.  We also played on the playground and walked around on the beach and the docks.  TongJie had lots of fun, but on the way home he fell asleep in his carseat.  Because of that, he wouldn't fall asleep for his nap after lunch.  So he basically didn't get a nap today, except for the 15 or 20 minutes that he slept in the car, so he was really cranky this afternoon and nothing would make him happy.  So, we decided it was a good time to pull out the old box.  And that did the trick.  I cut a window in it for him, and now he has a very nice little house with doors and a window that open and close.  He loved going in and out of his little house, and peeking through the window.


And here's a picture of him sitting on his front porch:

My sister and her two boys are visiting from Montana (my brother in law wasn't able to come because of his work schedule with the Air Force), so TongJie has had a chance to spend time with his cousins.  That has been lots of fun!  They are staying at my parents' house, so we've been there to hang out with them a bit.  I seem to only have gotten pictures of one of the boys with TongJie, but they both played with him a lot and kept him entertained - he thinks his cousins are just great!

I like this picture of TongJie and Jeff chillin' on the couch:

TongJie has recently taken an interest in shoes.  On Tuesday evening, he did the sign for "shoe" for the first time, after I signed it for him and said the word when we were putting on his shoes like I have been doing for quite some time now.  On Wednesday, he consistently used the sign in the correct context, even without me modeling it for him first, and he continued today, so it seems he now has another sign in his vocabulary.  I think it's up to three now: "more", "all done", and "shoe".  If you count waving for "hi" and "bye" then it's five because he does that too.  He has also been trying to put on his own shoes himself, as well as my or Jeff's shoes if they're laying around.  I helped him put on Jeff's shoes (over the top of his own) yesterday and walk around.  It was very serious business for TongJie, and he probably would have kept going for a long time if we wouldn't have distracted him.

TongJie also had fun trying out a tricycle that's at my parents house that my nephews used to use when they were younger.  He can't reach the pedals yet but he does pretty well using his feet to scoot around.

Finally, I should mention that we had to take our poor dog, Albert, to the vet today because a piece of cheat grass had gotten embedded in his foot between his toes and had begun to form an abscess.  We couldn't get it out ourselves because the skin had closed over it, so they had to lance it to remove the cheat grass and then bandage up his foot after they removed it.  They also shaved the fur off of his feet and between his toes while they were at it, so hopefully it won't happen again.  There have been a number of times where we've had to remove pieces of cheat grass from Albert's feet with tweezers that were beginning to embed themselves into his skin.  I wish we would have caught this one sooner before we had to take him to the vet to get it out!  He's been looking kind of pathetic this afternoon with his bandaged foot, but in reality it doesn't seem to be slowing him down.  He's a very sweet dog.


  1. Awww...poor Albert! I'm glad they were able to get that nasty cheat grass out of there, though. Maybe he will be more like his old self again soon.

    TongJie is SO adorable in his little cardboard house! Those pics of him peeking out the window are my favorites, I think! What a cute and "contagious" smile he's got! The one where he's sitting there on his porch, with his little pillow and blankie inside, it almost looks like he lives in the slums or something. Of course, the rest of the room furnishings give away the truth! ;)

    The shoe thing was so funny! We've had so much fun hanging with you guys and getting to know little TongJie and his big personality! :)

  2. All of these photos are just awesome. The box... so dang cute!