1997 DeFazio Family Updates

Well it's 1997 and things are going great. The kids are getting along wonderfully and Christopher is approaching the terrible two's.

Jennifer, Guy-Michael & ChristopherHere is a picture of the kids in their holiday duds and looking very innocent. Seriously though, they really are three terrific kids.

We're getting back in the swing of things after the holidays, which by the way, I thoroughly enjoyed spending at home with the kids. Getting back to work was very difficult. I'd much rather be home.

We will probably need to add an extension on to our house in order to maintain the toys. (Did you ever notice that kids toys are getting bigger and bigger?) Our den has been taken over by Little Tikes, Fisher Price, and Step 2. Fortunately, the older the kids get the smaller (and more expensive) the toys get.

February 1997

Christopher continues to develop well. He is communicating in his own way. We have also been teaching him signs to communicate. We have create signs for "more", "down", "drink", and "night night". When he has trouble forming words he uses the signs and it seem to work wonderfully. He has become and expert at going up and down stairs as well.

Eating has not been a problem at all - he eats everything. Some of his most recent choices have been pasta fagioli, quiche (different kinds), soup, and any kind of pasta. He is remarkable.

We really feel blessed with Christopher because we have heard of the problems associated with children coming from orphanages. The emotional scars suffered by some children are sometimes devastating. We are grateful to the orphanage where Christopher was.

I recently received an E Mail from someone who stumbled on my page. She grew up in Russia and had a very bad experience with an orphanage. Two children ran away from their orphanage and were taken in by this girl and some friend at a nearby dormatory at college. These two girls 8 and 10 had been treated poorly and were told that they weren't worth anything just like their mother. These college kids took in these kids and fed and clothed them. The cops ended up finding them and returnedthem to the orphanage where they were beaten and starved as punishment for running away. The girl who experience this married an American and now lives in the states and is thrilled to hear about stories of these adopted children since she knows the impact on their life. I cried when I read her story and thank God for allowing us this opportunity.

Sorry for the sad story but I wanted to share it.

Feb. 18 - Christopher has been learning new words everyday. He says fower (flower), piwow (pillow), down, Baaa (sheep), and communicates very well when he wants to eat and drink. He also has gotten facinated by trucks. Everytime we get in the car he is looking for trucks and shrieks with joy and does a driving motion when he sees one. He is hysterical. He is also showing traits of being a clown. Uh oh this could be trouble but he is so much fun to have around.

March 31st - Sorry I haven't been back sooner........ Things have been terrific. Christopher really enjoyed his first Easter. He woke up and had some help finding the hidden eggs. He got the Barney schoolhouse and a Barney video. It's amazing how much he loves that purple dinosaur. Christopher knows what he wants and can communicate his feelings very well. He knows which cabinets contain his favorite Pepperidge Farm "fishes" and which cabinets contain his cereals. He now says snow, cookie, barney, and loves trucks. Stay tooned.......

April 14, 1997 - I can't belive how wonderful it has been. The more articles I see about Russian Adoptions the more I realize how blessed we truly are. I just read an article in Woman's Day about several children adopted internationally who have severe emotional problems and have had a difficult time adjusting to the change. Then I look at Christopher and I cry with joy at how well he has adjusted. Everyone that has or is planning to adopt - you are always in my prayers.

Here is a picture taken on St. Patricks Day - Christopher made the hat at day care. We are so grateful that the nice weather is arriving. Chris loves to be outside. He loves the swing and the slide. Here he is playing in the grass (a little wind blown but having fun). He has been learning more words every day. This morning he went into a room and said "side" - my husband say HI - I let him know that "side" means outside. He wanted to go out and play at 6:30 this morning. He says bird, dog, coo-coo (cookie), car, car, car oh did I mention car? It's funny how Christopher is amazed by cars and trucks. He found Guy-Michaels match box cars the other day and plays with them all of the time. He also loves when we drive around where he points to all of the cars and trucks. He gets so excited. He is still "Hooked on Barney" and loves to dance to all of the songs they sing. Jennifer and Guy-Michael are just great with him and he loves being around them so much. Though as they get older they'll probably want him around less and less. Click here for Christophers updates.

I want to share a story of a very special friend I met on the internet. We have been corresponding for months. I first met Marilu and Cliff when they began inquiring about international adoption. Cliff has 2 boys from a previous marriage. Marilu would love to add a daughter to their happy family. They began the international adoption process with a private attorney but after several months and many heartaches they decided to attempt a domestic adoption. They placed an ad in a local paper looking for a birthmother. The first response was exciting but fell through. Last week I heard from Marilu. They have been introduced to another birthmom who is due in a few weeks. They met and even witnessed the sonagram. THEY ARE EXPECTING TWIN GIRLS!!!!! I am so excited for them. After reading this please say a special prayer for them. Marilu promised me pictures and I will share them as soon as I get them.

I know I went off track a little but I wanted to share this with the world. I'll be back with more updates shortly.

May 13th - Mother's day was very special. Grandma and Grandpa DeFazio and Great Grandma and Great Grandpa came over on Mother's Day. We had a great day! Christopher was showing off in front of his grandparents and great grandparents. The kids spent a lot of time outside on the swings. He is starting to learn his colors. Last week everything was blue, now everything is lellow. He also has a truck and car fettish. I found Guy-Michaels old matchbox cars about 3 weeks ago and I showed them to Christopher. He started jumping and clapping. He now has about 2 dozen cars and plays with them all of the time. I'll have more pictures shortly.

May 20th - I heard from my friend Marilu, they are home safe and sound with their two beautiful daughters Rebecca Leanne and Ashley Christina. Join me in congratulating dad and mom, Cliff and Marilu, and big brothers Drew and Michael. Email Marilu and Cliff well wishes. May you continue to be doubly blessed.

Now for more DeFazio stories. Christopher is loving the nicer weather. He always want to be outside "side". He loves playing on the swings and following all of the kids around the neighborhood. Here he is taking a lunch break. This weekend we went to cousin Julians communion and Chris was thrilled to be playing with his cousins Brianne and Lauren (kids his size). Grandma and Grandpa Jengo are back from Florida and celebrated their 40th Wedding Anniversary on Sunday, May 18th. CONGRATULATIONS MOM AND DAD!!!. I'll continue to provide updates but if there is something you think I should include that I haven't please Email me and let me know.
Picture taken at Sayen Gardens, Hamilton Square in Spring 1997

This has nothing to do with anything but I took this picture at Sayen Gardens in Hamilton, NJ last week and I thought it was beautiful. So enjoy the scenery until I can get back with more updates.

June 4th, 1997 - We've been pretty busy. Christopher has been talking more and more. We have run into one problem (probably left over from Russia). About 2 weeks ago Christopher started having severe diarrhea. After waiting for over a week we finally got the results. Christopher was diagnosed with Giardia Lamblia. This is a parasite infection that is transmitted usually through water. Since no one else in out family or at day care was effected we realized that it couldn't have been something he contracted with us. We found out that these parasites can be dormant. Which is evident since Christopher's original tests came back negative. He is on antibiotic and should be fine in 10 days. According to my research these types of infections are carried in 90% of the children that come from Russia. Other than this Chris continues to do great. He has brought great joy to our life. Christopher will be 2 on June 26, 1997. I'll have more updates by then.

Christopher with his birthday hat onJune 26th, 1997 - HAPPY BIRTHDAY CHRISTOPHER!!! Christopher had his 2nd Birthday Party on Saturday, June 21st. What a wonderful day. All of his Aunts, Uncles, Grandparents, Cousins and Friends came. We all had a grand time playing in the yard, swimming (I think Christopher was a fish in his first life). He loved when everyone sang Happy Birthday and he even blew out the candle.
Christopher is truly an amazing child. He is learning more and more each day. Oh, I almost forgot, he finished his medicine to treat the giardia lamblia and has been retested. His test came back negative. OK back to Chris. He surprises us every day with new things. His new one is whenever anyone sneezes he says Ah-Choo. He still has a car and truck fettish. He has all of the Little Titles Trucks. We went to Great Adventure (which he loved of course). Here he is on a boat ride with Jennifer, and here he is on the trucks.

July 18th, 1997 - We have had a few tough weeks. Christopher had scarlet fever one week and a viral infection the next. He was still his happy self so I guess we can't complain. Well now that he is officially 2 years old he is living up to the "terrible two" stereotype. We went to the Poconos, PA and boy did Christopher have fun jumping in the pool. For someone who hates when his face gets wet, he certainly didn't mind going under water. Oh well, I guess it's a kid thing. Christopher decided that it was time for a big boy bed so the crib was put away and he now has officially moved to the big bed. He has been doing very well. Next is potty training but we'll wait until he's really ready. Check back for more updates later this month and feel free to write me.

November 1997 - Sorry I've been delinquent in updating. We have had a very busy few months with both my husband and I changing jobs and Christopher changing day care. Anyway. Besides the changes everything has been going great.
In September we went to Grandma and Grandpa Jengo's new house. They just bought a house on the Delaware River. we had a great time. We pithced a tent in the yard and camped. We fished in the river Christopher fishing at Grandma and Grandpa Jengo's house(even Christopher) but only caught seaweed.
Christopher loves to read. Here he is Chris reading a bookreading a book at Grandma's but his absolute favorite book is the Christmas Wishbook (or any book that has cars, trucks, planes, and trains). Christopher continues to develop extremely well. He now can count to ten and loves songs like "Hurry, Hurry drive the firetruck", "ABC's", "itsy-bitsy spider", and "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star". Christopher really adores Jennifer and Guy Michael . It is great to watch them play and communicate. Christopher continues to adapt well to change. He is now in a day care center instead of with a private sitter and he loves it. He has made new friends and even loves the drive to and from school.

More November 1997 - Halloween was alot of fun. We weren't sure if Christopher was actually going to wear his costume but he finally caved in and had alot of fun. Here's Christopher and Jennifer as we leave to go trick or treating with cousins Nicholas and Lauren. I will try to be more timely with my updates but if you have any questions please don't hesitate to write.

December 1997 - This holiday season was wonderful. The kids are at a great age. Christopher was his usual happy self. I have decided to create an album of "Silly Christopher Pictures" since he seems to be turning into a comedian. As I said last year it seem that Christopher's toys are taking over the house. Well this year is no exception. Here are pictures of Christopher playing with his new train set and his remote control dump truck. He also got Little Tikes trucks (which are not so little). Jennifer's favorite gift was an electric piano and Guy Michael's was his Nintendo 64.
Christopher has been doing great in school. He loves his friends and has been learning at an extraordinary pace. We are very proud and truly blessed with this remarkable child.

Instead of exchanging gifts with my family this year we decided to have the entire family go away for a weekend. We went to a farm in Pennsylvania for some good old-fashioned fun and it worked.

The kids really enjoyed seeing the animals, playing the dredel game with Aunt Amy, and having a special candlelight dinner. We also celebrated Taylors birthday (which was actually Christmas Eve).

Picture of the entire Jengo clan

1997 was another great year and we look forward to 1998 which I'm sure will bring us more happiness and joyous moments to cherish and celebrate. Click here for the 1998 DeFazio Family updates (last updated August 14, 1998).


Christopher Thomas's Story(last updated April 30, 1998)

March 1996-When We Started

April 1996-How We Began

May 1996-Continuing Saga Of Bureaucracy

June 1996-Preparing For Trip To Russia

July 1996-Our Dreams Realized

1996-How is Christopher Thomas Coming Along(updated Dec. 30, 1996)

Financial Page

Other Helpful Adoption Links

Children's Adoption Network

International Adoption Clinic

Families of Russian and Ukraine Adoptions (FRUA)

Adoption Information, Assistance, Support

1996 janice.defazio@excite.com

Feel free to E-Mail me with questions, comments, (or suggestions for my site).

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