Friday, August 31, 2012


Yesterday morning before school Eli wanted to go for a ride in my car, so I took him over to the play area in the Cherry Creek Mall before the stores opened.  I thought it would be a fun thing to do, and a good way for him to see the mall without the hustle and bustle of thousands of people.  I'm not much of a mall person, but if we have to run in there sometime on a Saturday afternoon at least it'll be somewhat familiar to him.

When we arrived at the play area I realized I forgot my phone.  Huge bummer because I was hoping to sneak some photos of our camera-shy kid.  Actually, he's not so much shy of the camera as he is angered by it.  Lately the sight of a camera on him can throw him into a rage.

So maybe it was better that I forgot my phone.  The temptation would've been too great because he was so adorable there.  And I maybe would've ruined a perfect morning by trying to take his picture.

He enjoyed the play area at first, but quickly became bored; it seems designed for younger kids. After he was done playing, he came and sat by my side (no touching!) and played with this shark bath toy Brad had bought him the day before.

The fish in the shark's mouth is on a string; you pull it out and the shark "swims" to get it.  It's kind of a bust in water, but Eli loves pulling the string and watching the fish go back to the shark while the shark thrashes its tail.  Since Brad gave it to him, Eli has taken this shark with him everywhere.

Within a few seconds, Eli had a whole crowd of younger kids in a semi-circle around him, fascinated by this shark toy.  Eli demonstrated how the toy works, then handed it to one of the littles to try.  When the fish was back up at the shark, the little handed the toy back to Eli, and Eli again showed how it works and handed it to another little.  This went on for a good ten minutes.  And when one of the littles wandered off with the toy, Eli wasn't worried.  He kept an eye on this boy and his shark and waited for the boy to bring it back (which he did).

According to Eli's paperwork, he has no younger siblings.  So my guess is he learned this tender behavior during his time in the orphanage, when he was surrounded by mostly younger children.

We adoptive parents are taught so much about the negative affects of orphanage care on children; and, indeed, I agree the world would be a better place if no child ever spent a single night in an orphanage.  But here was an example of something beautiful that likely came from his time in the orphanage.  He was so sweet and caring and patient with this group of littles.

Eli would make an excellent big brother.  (Somewhere Brad is groaning while reading this, and maybe rolling his eyes, but with a smile on his face.)


  1. How sweet! Goes to show that, sometimes, something beautiful can come out of something negative. We have so much to learn from children.

  2. So precious. I hear Grandma Dee is already praying for her grand Holden in Ethiopia. ;) Maybe there is something to Eli being and older brother!