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Thursday, August 28, 2008

So what does all this mean?`

Some of you may have questions related to our last 2 posts. Here is my (Ryan's) Non-medical understanding of Zac's condition. I'll start by saying that I could be very wrong with everything that I'm about to type. Our official appointment with the endocrinologist isn't until September 30th. Until then, we'll have to guess.

Zac has a Human Growth Hormone (HGH) definciency. It affects around 10 to 15 thousand people. This has nothing to do with his "being adopted". It's just a condition that he has. He may have been born with it, or it may be onset. We'll most likely never know. His pituitary gland is simply not producing HGH. If untreated, he will not grow much. Specifically, he could be 4 feet tall and look like a small kid for the rest of his life. Most of you probablly know who Gary Coleman is. It's kinda like that. (Although, Gary Coleman actually has some other condition... something related to the kidneys) But you get the point.

Fortunately, in 1984, doctors figured out a way to mass produce HGH. This is wonderful news for our Zac, as this makes his condition quite treatable. A simple (yet painful) daily injection of HGH will get his body growing and he will most likely come close to reaching his full potential. (Whatever that may be... 5'6"? 5'10"? 6'5"?) Time will tell.

It should be noted that it didn't take long for athletes and muscle heads to figure out that a daily dose of HGH can do wonders for a person with already normal HGH production. (i.e. Mark McGuire)

Editor's Note: I don't want to minimize Mark McGuire's accomplishments.... I'm fairly confident that no amounts of HGH would be enough for me to hit ONE homerun in the majors.

I'm just so incredibly thankful that God led us to be Zac's parents. What could have been a BIG deal for him in Russia, will not be much of an issue at all here with us. (Again, I may be jumping the gun with the diagnosis.)

We'll let you know more after Sept. 30th.

Small.... but still really REALLY cute.... and a brave little swimmer too.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


Our doctor called us back tonight to tell us that Zac's "bone age" is that of a six month old and not a child that is almost 36 months old. He feels that the next best step is to see a pediatric endocrinologist for more testing.

Based on Zac's normal (to above normal) intelligence and being proportionate in his well below average height and weight it is likely that he has a growth hormone deficiency. I am jumping the gun a little bit by giving him the diagnosis before we even see a specialist, but everything seems to fit that diagnosis to me. So, I am already gearing up for daily injections until my son reaches his full, adult height. I'm sure he will not like this at all, but we are not the first parents to have to give their child injections for their well-being.

I am not sad. I usually (not always) try and handle medical situations very matter-of-factly. I am grateful that if HGH deficiency is the diagnosis that their is treatment available and that it is not something that has effected his mind.

Isn't it just crystal clear that God had this child in mind for us. We are so, so, so thankful that He called us to adoption, that we heard and answered so that Zac can get the treatment that he needs for this (along with countless other blessings for both he and us).

So, we'll keep you posted regarding the doctor's visits.


Well, after four months of being home, eating very well and nutritious, being very active with all kinds of activities and sleeping extremely well Zac has not grown one bit! Yes, that's right. We had his height and weight checked this week and he weighs the exact same and has not grown a centimeter.

We were sure we would have seen a growth spurt in this amount of time like so many other adoptive parents. Since we have not seen the growth we had hoped for the doctor sent us to get a "bone age" X-ray today at Children's Hospital. It was a quick trip and Zac did great with the X-ray (he is such a trooper). We will find out the results tomorrow. If indeed his bone age is less than his real age then we will be off to a pediatric endocrinologist. If everything looks normal then I guess we have a genetically little guy who will make a wonderful gymnast!

We'll let you know.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Potty Training

Well, as most of you know we successfully UNtrained Zac regarding the potty when he arrived home in May. Since then whenever we ask if he wants to use the potty he gets excited and does it well and yet we still haven't taken the diapers off to see if he can initiate a pee or poop and keep the underwear dry. That was until this week. I don't know what prompted us to give him underwear but when he saw them his face lit up and he was very content to be a "big boy" and wear his underwear. He went his first two days in underwear without an accident. Today we had two accidents, but it's obvious that he is ready, willing and able to be potty/poopy trained. That was easy....thank you Baby Home #1 in Russia for making that the easiest potty training ever (besides my mom potty training Hallie!).

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Zac's Vocabulary Explosion

We have said before that Zac is doing very well learning English but today he blew us away with all his new words and phrases. Usually, he seems to add about 1 word per day. Today was closer to 12 new words.

"I'm not happy, I'm mad." This said with arms folded across his chest and a big, pouting lip in response to a time-out.

"Mama, swing super high!" He wanted to swing really high at the park, I guess!

"Nope. Yep." We're moving even farther away from Da and Nyet.

"Hallie is a Princess"

"Hey! That's NOT Funny!"

"Hey Mom, I fully understand the parameters of Quantum Mechanics!" (OK - So maybe he didn't really say this last one)

Friday, August 15, 2008

Zac's I love yous

Check out this great video of Zac.

Translation for those of you that need some help understanding him: "I love, I love, I love Shawn. I love, I love Hallie and Jake. I love Zac Pavel Horner. I love, I love, I love... Hannah. I love Mommy and Daddy. And then, you, Pasha Hannah.

Isn't this the greatest! For those of you family members that were not included in the list, don't worry. He went through everybody, but by the time Hannah (our nanny) got out the camera this was the list of people that was left on his mind!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Hallie First Day of Kindergarten

Presenting the Kindergartener, Hallie Horner!

Hallie had a great first day of school! We had no tears and lots of smiles this morning! Hallie was excited to get dressed in her apple outfit and put on her Hello Kitty backpack. Zachary wanted desperately to wear a backpack as well. Jacob really wanted to wear his new school clothes too but we convinced him to wait until preschool starts in September.

We drove to the neighborhood that was closer to the school then walked the rest of the way.

It was a beautiful day and all the kids lined up behind their teachers in the grass. Hallie looked serious, but managed to give us some smiles too. She was happy to be with her new teacher.

As she walked away Ryan and I had a "sentimental moment" but the boys redirected our attention pretty quickly.

We spent the day thinking of Hallie and praying for her day. When we went to pick her up we were greeted with a face beaming with joy and a huge smile. The first words out of her mouth were, "Mom, I had Nacho chips for lunch and I liked them. I also had a banana and it was soooo good!" She then went on to tell us the details of her day. Ryan and I were thrilled that she shared so much and was so happy to have started this new phase of life.

When we got home we ate cookies and milk. After we were done Hallie said, "Mom, I want to go back to school right now." Well, at least getting her there tomorrow should not be a problem.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Zac's Latest Accomplishments

As many of you adoptive parents know, it is a joy to watch your new toddler do and say new things every day. Zac is doing remarkably well verbally expressing his needs, wants and affection. Here's some of his latest...

Today he got something in his shoe at the park and said, "Mommy (which is new instead of Mama), somethin' poky, shoe." Poky? Where did he learn that? This is just one small example of his ability to use descriptive adjectives to tell us what he thinks and feels. He also says it in such a way that others can often understand what he is saying, not just mom!

This week he also started using "me" to answer questions instead of refering to himself in the third person as, "Pasha".

Another fun thing to hear from Zac is his answer to the question, "what's your name?" He says, "Zac Pavel Corney (his version of Horner)."

Zac also can tell you his mom, dad, sister and brother's names when asked as well as his birthday.

One of the sweetest things to hear him say is, "in Jesus Name, Amen." at the end of his mealtime and bedtime prayers.

It's obvious he is a sponge and we are so proud of him!

Well, the next post will be coming soon as Hallie starts Kindergarten in less than two days! We will be sure to include some pictures of our sweetheart!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Most expensive Cities

I was thumbing through my Wall Street Journal yesterday and I came upon the 10 most expensive hotel cities in the world. I thought I'd share them.

10. London $305
9. Hong Kong $306
8. Bangalore $316
7. Mumbai $317
6. Stockholm $318
5. Milan $325
4. Dubai $326
3. Paris $339
2. New York $384
and the number 1 most expensive hotel city..... You guessed it right!

1. Moscow $540

(not just alittle bit more either... a lot more)

Monday, August 4, 2008

Bed & Birthday

We moved Zac out of our bedroom and into "the boys room".  Zac and Jake are now sleeping together and it is going extremely well!  I can't believe our wild boys actually stay quiet and go to sleep so well.  We were concerned that Zac would feel scared or that Jake would not be able to go to sleep and he would keep Zac up.  Fortunately, neither has happened and the transition went very smoothly.

(See below)

In addition to this, our big news is that Jake turned 4 on Saturday!  We had a handful of friends and family over for his birthday party.  (We got a little carried away with the yard toys).  He had a great birthday and we are so grateful for our adventurous, determined, athletic, spirited, sweet son!

(See below)

All the kids got to attack Ryan with water balloons to end the party!