Yesterday, we celebrated Alex's birthday. He was born twelve years ago in Vologda, Russia, the youngest of six children. He is now the oldest of seven! That sure adds up to a lot of siblings in the world. Alexander means "helper of mankind" and Alex has always lived up to that, and is a great helper of womankind, too!
Nine years ago, we received a huge packet of information about Alex, including videos and lots of pictures. Through tears I watched this little boy on the video, yearning to tell him "Happy Birthday--your family has found you and we're coming!!" I wish I could post those pictures here, but we certainly didn't have digital photos then. Just imagine a much rounder face and huge blue eyes.
Alex loves his birthday and talks about it as much as we'll let him as the day approaches. Fortunately, our family realizes just how important it is to him and they rally to celebrate it with him. Last night, we asked our whole family over and they all came, even the teenagers who normally have better offers! Alex was beaming, showing off his gifts to anyone and everyone who would listen.
The last year has been one with lots of growth in Alex as a student. His reading exploded and he spent hours and hours reading, something we never thought we'd see during those early years of struggle. He has willingly taken on more responsibility around the house, working diligently and with great care, as usual. He has discovered a love for ceramics and is thrilled to be taking a clay class this summer. Oh, and his hair has grown, too! I never thought I would let him have this longer hair, but he looks so cute in it that I find it hard to chop it off.
His greatest growth has been in his understanding and appreciation of the Bible. He has been eagerly waking each morning and rushing to read his Bible chapter and tell me all about it.
I can't wait to see what this last tween year holds in store for my oldest baby!