Tuesday, September 30, 2014

9 Years Old Today! Happy Birthday Kyle!!

Another year, another "drive-by" post from Dad.

This time to recognize Kyle's last single-digit birthday!

He had a great time today - I think it met his expectations.  He is a little guy that really looks forward to his birthdays - and sharing them with his family and friends.  He treated his 3rd Grade classmates to some Cookies and M&Ms - they were reportedly very happy to partake.

Kyle loves his new teacher and he's psyched to be in 3rd Grade.  We had a great summer - another UMLY summer camp season - with Dylan and Ashley again!  He has developed into an excellent swimmer, who's not afraid to dive, either.

He enjoys bike and scooter riding with Dylan, and his friends from the neighborhood.  He continues to be a good big brother and he shares his MineCraft "World" with his brother and sister.

We enjoyed a spring Vacation in Cancun and a late summer trip to visit Lisa's cousin (Aunt Julie) in Southern California.  Yes, we did also manage to make it to Disneyland, Legoland, California Adventure, the San Diego Zoo and we did some whale watching in Dana Point.  Thanks to Mom for her extraordinary trip planning skills.

We visited Grandma, Poppa, Uncle Mark, Aunt Avery, Paityn, Logan and Luke in Michigan at Christmas and again in the summer.

It's hard to believe that Kyle is celebrating number NINE already - he's already planning # 10!!!

We love you very much Kyle.
Mom & Dad

Here are a few pictures...

In California...

 Tonight, blowing out candles...

At Bushkill Falls...

Whale Watching in Dana Pt., CA

 In Cape May, NJ...

At Valley Forge National Park...

Manning the Rudder - Sailing in Cancun...

In Cancun...

 On the Beach at Club Med, Cancun...
(The Birds just flew up and landed on his arms - yeah right!)

In Myrtle Beach, SC...

In Myrtle Beach, SC - recreating a wonderful shot with Mom...

Bringing out the guns at Ringing Rock Park...

 Cooling off with Ashley in the summer...

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Happy Seven Years, Kyle!!

If it's Christmas, it must be Grand Rapids!
Finally, some SNOW!!  We arrived to about 8" on the ground and we added a few more last night.
Today's been off & on - so we'll have a white Christmas.  First one in (3) years!

Just Dad here with a drive-by post to mark SEVEN years for Kyle on his Forever Family Day.

We can't believe that another year has passed, and a busy one at that.

Kyle's now firmly established as a second grader and he's been a great big brother influence for Dylan as Dylan navigates first grade.  Kyle continues to excel in Math & Reading and he's made many friends in his new class (even though many of his first grade classmates were moved to other classes).

He continues to enjoy Lego Projects, Wii, and learning about pretty much anything.  He's a jump rope expert, loves to play basketball in the driveway (thanks to Mr. Dave for the backboard!) and he throws a tight spiral.  Just tonight, Mom helped him discover "code.org" where he's writing basic (not the language) programs to direct "angry birds" though mazes to gobble up "green pigs".

Kyle would wear shorts to school every day if we let him and he can't get enough of the snow!

The family was very active again last year and the rest of the crew's doing well.
We're hoping to have another fun trip to Mexico this spring.

Congratulations, we love you and we can't believe that we're lucky enough to be your parents. Can't wait to see what next year brings.

Dad & Mom

Monday, September 30, 2013

Happy Birthday, Kyle!! 8 Years Old Today...

Hi all, Dad here,

Just checking in to mark the happy occasion of Birthday # 8 for Kyle.  Today was a very good day, and Kyle celebrated another birthday, at home with our family and Grandma and Poppa Wedder.  Grandma and Poppa are visiting for a little while - they really helped out while Ashley was in the hospital for a few days recently.

We had ice cream cake (Chocolate, of course) and Kyle got the camera that he'd wanted, as well as a cool Lego Set.  He's already begun to build the Lego set - and it won't be long before it's done!

Here he is in a photo from earlier tonight...


Kyle started 2nd Grade (!!) this fall and he'd really enjoying his new teacher and new class friends.  He excels at Math and has really done well with his reading skills.  It's been fun to watch.

When I told some of our friends at Goddard School that Kyle was EIGHT, they could not believe it!  We were joking about the first few days that Kyle was at GS - he had a hard time even moving around until he learned how to "scoot" on his little bottom!

Kyle is a very generous and kind big brother to both Dylan and Ashley.  He's showing Dylan all of the ins and outs of school routines at Oak Ridge.  And he's always keeping a close eye on Ashley, making sure that she's OK.

Mom and I just wanted to post a short Happy Birthday message to commemorate the day.
Happy Birthday Kyle.  We love you very much.


Monday, December 24, 2012

Happy 6 Years as a Lockhead! Forever Family Day!

Hi again,

Dad here again, and again from Grand Rapids, our home away from home during the Christmas Holidays.  Thanks to Gramma and Poppa Wedder and Uncle Mark and Aunt Avery for their hospitality.

Hard to believe that it's been SIX years...and that's it already Christmas again.  Merry Christmas to all of the Lockheads/Careys wherever you might be this evening.

We arrived on Saturday afternoon, and we'll stay for a week or so.  (Hopefully we'll see some snow this week...we have been very unlucky during the last two trips.  No snow on the ground when we arrive and none while we were here.  Darn global warming...maybe Al Gore's onto something?  Naahhh.  Maybe snow will get here on Thursday?

I just wanted to do a "drive-by" post to commemorate this day.  Christmas Eve will never be the same.

Kyle is doing great - safely asleep with his brother and sister - awaiting SC's visit.  Shortly before we herded everyone upstairs, we check on the Big Man's progress - and yes, "there's an APP for that".  It appeared that he was taking care of Portugal and Spain.

He's halfway through 1st Grade and he loves to learn - he's inquisitive and he's developed exceptional math skills.  He's really starting to accelerate his with his reading skills, as well.  He and Dylan love bike riding whether around the neighborhood or at local parks on the trails.  He's a very caring big brother and he really looks after Ashley and Dylan. That is fun to see.  He's also making a lot of friends at school and exploring more of the things that are interesting him.

He got his first chance to ride the school bus home from school last Friday! (Our schedules unfortunately don't permit this very often.)  Mom waited patiently for the Bus to stop and for Kyle to hop off - IT DID...BUT HE DIDN'T!!  It turns out he missed his stop - luckily the driver knows the route, the neighborhood, and the kids really well - he made second pass and Kyle finally made it off!!  Very funny - Mom didn't seem amused...?

It's been a great week so far.  We went to the movies to see Monsters Inc (3D) with UM, AA, and cousin Luke and Logan.  (Ashley passed out in about 25 minutes - a much better result that the last three times!)  We spent a few moments today with Gramma and Poppa also - showing them the kids' adoption videos and the musical collages we put together for them.  That was fun to do - they are all having a lot more to say about their experiences in China - mostly Dylan, since he had the longest and strongest ties.

Again, as the end of the night approaches, Merry Christmas to the families with whom we traveled to China to meet Kyle.

Just for the record, I have the Charlie Brown / Vince Guaraldi album playing in the background as I type - I make sure to try to listen at least for a few moments every Christmas Eve.

Thanks for checking in and...Happy Gotcha Day, Kyle.

Here are a few recent photos - be sure to check Facebook as well.

Good night and a Merry Christmas to all.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Happy 7th Birthday Kyle!!

Hi All, Dad Checking in...

Kyle turns SEVEN (7) years old today.

Happy Birthday!!
He is celebrating by putting together a pretty complicated LEGO set that he got as a gift.

Grandma and Poppa are visiting from Grand Rapids and we're enjoying a full "birthday weekend."  We had a small ice cream cake last night after dinner and we sang "Happy Birthday".

Kyle is doing really well and is enjoying 1st Grade - he would go 7 days a week if he could!  He like almost all of his school subjects and seems to excel at Math.

It's hard to believe how the time has melted away - Lisa and I were joking the other day that it was a few weeks after he came home with us until he could even scoot along the floor on his little bottom.  Now he's got tons of strength and confidence, is a great swimmer, has already outgrown his bike, and loves to visit any playground we see.

Here are a few more recent photos...

Walking with Ashley at the Fishing Pier at Seal Beach, CA, during our recent trip to California...

Riding a giant tortoise at the San Diego Zoo...

And Kyle, Mom & Dylan riding the Matterhorn (Very unexpected development, since Kyle is NOT a rollercoaster kid - the Matterhorn is somewhat mild, though and Kyle really loved it.  The most important thing at Disneyland was to "ride the Matterhorn at night".)

Here's to Birthday #7 - We hope you have a great day.

For any visitors,
Please bounce over to our Facebook page for more stories & pictures.

Happy Birthday, Kyle.
We Love You.
Mom & Dad

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Just a quick note...

If you've arrived here through a CHOP Adoption Newsletter link, this happens to be Kyle's Story...

Here is Dylan's Story...

Here is Ashley's Story...

Remember - they read from the bottom.

Enjoy and thanks for visiting.


Monday, August 27, 2012

Kyle's First Day in FIRST GRADE!!

Hi again, just another drive-by posting to note another small milestone...

Today was Kyle'e FIRST DAY in 1st Grade.

He's been anticipating this day for over a year, when he realized that he missed the cut-off to start last year.

Early in the Summer, he graduated from his Goddard School (this time for good...) Kindergarten class. That was quite a day - we were so proud of his progress and happy that he had made so many friends - and had such an impact on his teachers. It was a very emotional day for all of us...

Since then, excitement had been building toward today.  Kyle, Dylan and Ashley all attended the "Y" camp again for the summer and had a blast.  They really enjoyed all of the activities and the field trips (for the boys), too.

Last week, we were fortunate enough to take the California vacation that we had to postpone due to Ashley's medical issues upon her return from China.  We can't believe that was (2) years ago!  The upside is that we really think they all appreciated the trip even more, since they were two years older and were not completely jet-lagged from a 12 hour flight from Hong Kong.

We had a wonderful week <Check here for Pictures after we get a chance to load them up>.  We spent time in San Diego, saw the Zoo, did Legoland, and visited LaJolla, then we went to Los Angeles to Disneyland & D.'s California Adventure, and had a fun time everywhere (excepting a small number of mini-meltdowns).

We flew home on Saturday and had Sunday to recover (and to let the excitement build even more for Kyle).

Back to First Grade...
Mom took today off from work, to make sure he got to school and settled in.
He was all chattering as they left the house for the 2.5 minute drive to school, but Mom noticed a strange decline in the level of chatter as they got closer to school - until she shut the car off - that when I think it hit him (and there was an awkward silence).  They walked together up to the sign in desk, and Kyle began to well up - it was very overwhelming -- new place ("I don't know where to go...") - new kids ("I don't know who'll be my friend - I don't even know any of them.") - new teachers (this isn't Goddard School) - and no Dylan and Ashley...

Once she signed him in and looked down to his little face the dam broke for him...and soon for her as well.  He didn't want her to go and she didn't want to leave him like that - so they were immediately assisted by a very nice teacher who, along with Mom's help, was able to help him pull it together.  He was able to say good-bye to Mom, and he walked away to his first first grade activity: coloring.

Mom picked him up a little early and he seemed very content and pleased with himself that he was able to redirect his day to be a very good (and memorable) one.  By the end of the afternoon, when we reunited at dinner-time (over Mom's Mac & Cheese), we was confidently chattering again, telling us about all of the great stuff he did, about all of the new parts of his school, about his new friends and classmates, about his new teacher...and paying special attention to explaining 1st Grade to Dylan and Ashley.

And so it goes...Kyles's over the hurdle, he's on his way, he'll be fine.

As for me & Mom...we'll never be the same.
What an absolute joy it's been to watch him grow into the little person he is.

Thanks for visiting.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

A Big Day - Kyle Lost his first tooth!

Hi again, Dad here, just passing through with a drive-by post noting that Kyle has lost his first tooth.

He's been watching many of his school friends losing teeth (almost every day it seems) and now he can finally join the club.

It took a while but, after not being able to sleep one night last week, due to the major distraction of this loose tooth, Kyle finally (bravely I'd say) yanked the bugger out all by himself.

Here is the proof:

We'll be back, hopefully soon.
Until then thanks for visiting.


Saturday, December 24, 2011

Happy FIVE Years, Kyle!!!

Hi all,

Coming to you tonight, this Christmas Eve, from Grandma & Poppa's house in East Grand Rapids, MI.

As I walked by the clock on the way to the computer, I saw that time was short in order to be able to post this note while it's still, in fact, Chritmas Eve.  A little under two hours until the magic hour of midnight and calendar turning to December 25, 2011.

We drove from Phladelphia to EGR last night and so we're all still a little car-lagged from the trip.  We've changed our long-trip logistics with Ashley's arrival, opting to drive all night instead of calling it a night in Cranberry, PA.  We had very good luck and a cooperative crew last night an we pulled in around 2:30 AM.  This was about about 11 hours and 45 minutes after rolling out of the Malvern Train Station.  I watched every one of the over 700 miles pile up on the odometer.

It was a great trip by all accounts - kids went down early, and Mom only popped up a few times with her trademark "Are you OK?".   The weather cooperated almost the entire way.  It was colder that we'd seen in Philly (in the high 20's when we crossed into Michigan from Ohio). And there was only a slight hint of snow flurries with little impact (we dialed our speed back to 70 from 80).  We did see two cars that were not as luck.  One went down an embankment off to the right shoulder, while the other spun out halfway across the median to our left.  Both stayed upright on all 4 wheels, so were hopeful everyone was OK.

Five years ago at about this time, Kyle was spending his first night with us - his forever family- as the our first son. Here is a photo of him just shortly before we fell asleep:

What a wonderous Christmas present...

Five years has since melted off the calendar, and that day is still vibrant in my memory - you can read about it all as it happened earlier in this story- just scroll back to the post from Christmas Eve 2006.  I can still feel the warmth of his little sweaty body as we peeled off the layers of clothes to get to him so we could give him a bath...

I still have flashbacks to Kyle's first few days with us in Nanchang whenever I hear the Vince Guaraldi Chistmas album ("da da-da da-da-da da-da, da da-da...") - what a time in our lives it was!

We frequently flip through our adoption photo albums with all three of the kids - it's really fun to hear the stories they tell and see how they react to seeing their pre-Lockhead days captured forever in photographs.

Kyle turned (6) years old a few months ago - my last post before this one - and his personality is really unfolding.  He loves his Brother Dylan and Sister Ashley - and has taken on the mantle of "big brother" proudly and well.  He enjoys school and enjoys all of the friends he's made.  And he's anticipaing the excitement of FIRST GRADE this coming fall.

I just wanted to stop by briefly to mark the occasion of Kyle's first 5 years.  The pace of our family's life is accelerating and we're doing the best we can to mark the special days, like this one.  The times like we experienced on our Christmas Eve in 2006 are momentous, but fleeting.  We hope to never let these memories fade, or to let their anniversaries slip away without marking them...we don't want to have to carry around the regret of missing one.

To any of the families of our China travel group who shared our journey in 2006, and may be reading this, we offer a special wish for a Merry Chrsitmas and a Happy New Year.

I better turn in soon, I just overheard that the weather channel forecaster is picking up Santa's sleigh on radar over Newfoundland.

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.

PS We've migrated a lot of our online activity to Facebook - so please look us up under "Charlie Lockhead" for more news and photos.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Happy 6th Birthday, KYLE!!!

So here I sit again...a full year later...another blink of an eye.

Kyle turned SIX (6) today, and by all accounts he had a GREAT Day.

We had a family Birthday Party last weekend, with Uncle Sean, Aunt Laura, Alyx, Sean Andrew, Aunt Mary, Aunt Rita, Pop-Pop and Grandmom ("who live next to us", as they're known).
It was a lot of fun and Kyle loved being the center of attention.

Kyle had a great week this week building up to a countdown to Friday - his BIRTHDAY!

Kyle, Dylan and Ashley all helped Mom make Cupcakes for his school friends - and he was very attentive to make sure that everyone who wanted one got a cupcake (and a birthday goodie bag!).

Here are some pictures for this week...

It would be impossible to describe the last year and all that's happened...but...
Kyle has grown into a wonderful, generous, handsome, caring little boy.  It's been magical to watch how he has really embraced his important job as big brother.  He looks after both Dylan and Ashley and he really enjoys his role.

He continues to do well in school and makes lot of friends wherever he goes. He and Dylan took a break from Goddard School this year and went to "Y" Camp over the summer.  They both had a GREAT time - they were very sad that the summer ended - they were in the same group and still miss it, even as school has started up for the fall.

It really does seem like yesterday when we were getting ready to leave for Beijing to meet Kyle for the first time and welcome him to our family - wondering what it would be like.

Sometimes, looking back, I wish I knew then what I know now.

But that would have taken away all of the wonder and pure joy of watching how it all has unfolded.

Happy Birthday Kyle. We can imagine our family without you.
Love Mom & Dad

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Happy Birthday!!! Kyle Turns 5 Years Old Today

Today is Kyle's 5th Birthday!  It's been very long time since we last posted here, but thought we'd revisit...

Since then, Dylan's joined our family and we're a few days away from leaving for China to bring home our daughter Ashley home.

Kyle had a GREAT DAY today. It's truly unbelievable to look back at the first few posts from this story and then look at today.  I'm sure every parent goes through this, but it's almost indescribable to explain if you're not one.

He's really thriving at home with Dylan and at Goddard School.  His personality is really taking shape and he's growing up.

Kyle shared gift bags and cupcakes (Thanks Mom!) with his classmates at lunch today.  I had the opportunity to visit him on my lunch break today and saw how he interacted with everyone.  It was a unique window that I had a chance to peek through.  He made absolutely sure that we went to get Dylan from his classroom before anything got started so that Dylan could participate.

It was an exceptionally good day - one I'll never forget.  We cannot believe he's 5.
And it all happened in the blink of an eye.

I'll leave it at that.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Saturday at Christmas in Grand Rapids

Hi again,

We just got back from a great afternoon of bowling with Uncle Mark, Paityn, Logan, Luke, Mom, Grandma and Poppa (Grandma & Poppa were mostly cheering, not bowling!).

Kyle was the winner of both kids' games.

The "ramp" was a big key to all of the fun - although Luke was string enough to launch his ball down the lane unassisted! We clocked his ball's average travel time from when it left his hand until it made contact (sometimes nudging, but not knocking over) the pins, at 1 Min. 15 Secs.

We all had a lot of good fun.

Here are some pictures...

More to come soon...

Friday, December 26, 2008

Catching Up - Kyle In School

Kyle continues to make excellent progress in his Goddard school.

He's progressed from the "Leaping Lizards" to the "Thunderbolts". His teachers say that he really enjoys school and he's really developing into a great little student.

We had the chance to share some school events with him this year.
Kyle's Grandmom and Pop-Pop Lockhead visited his class for a Grandparents event.

He also had a lot of fun during the annual Halloween Parade.

Thanks to Grandmom, Pop-Pop and Aunt Rita for driving all the way out to school to see us. Here he is holding hands with Miss Jody, one of his favorite teachers:

Kyle parading with his classmates and scanning the crowd for Grandmom, Pop-Pop & Aunt Rita

And in the fall, Mom & Dad enjoyed a family night of music and fun.
Goddard School had a PotLuck after school and there was a live music group playing kid's songs - we had a lot of fun.

More to come soon...

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Now, For Some Catching up...

Hi again, just had a great visit from Uncle Mark's family and Kyle had a roarin' good time with his cousins...
He's just hit the sack and will likely be sleeping very shortly...

In February of 2007, Kyle, Mom, Dad, and Poppa & Grandma Wedder visited Walt Disney World in Florida. The plane trip was fun and we stayed at the Pp Century Resort at Disney. It was a very full week for us and we visited a lot of Parks. We had a lot of laughs with all of the Parks that we went to. The weather wasn't the best, but we had a great time.

We even got a chance to meet up with Kyle's Pop-Pop and Grandmom Lockhead and Aunt Meg, Uncle Curt, and Kyle's cousins Justin and Malissa! That was a LOT of fun, and we really had a good day.

We got to see the night-time Parade, went on rides, went to Brunch with Chef Mickey, went to a Character Dinner, visited Epcot, went shopping and saw the Finding Nemo Show. (We did a bunch of other stuff too, but too may things to mention...)

Here are some highlight photos:

Mom, Kyle and Prince Charming (Kyle's the One in the Bib!!)
(Mom's the one with the wandering eye!!!)

Kyle & Mom mugging in a Viking hat at Epcot - Norway

Kyle at Epcot - The Living Seas

Cousin Justin, Kyle & Grandmom Lockhead in 3-D!

Kyle enjoying some time just playing...

The Gang at the Magic Kingdom

Kyle, Mom & Tigger at Animal Kingdom

Kyle & Uncle Curt in line at Animal Kingdom

K-man enkoying Popcorn while waiting for the Animal Kingdom Parade

Hola, amigos - from Epcot - Mexico

Kyle, Dad & Mickey

Kyle just relaxing while waiting for Dinner at the Boardwalk

Kyle stealing a kiss from MInnie (at Chef Mickey's)

Kyle looking forward to a big day at the Magic Kingdom

Kyle and Mom share a relaxing moment on the Riverboat

Our family with the One & Only Lightning McQueen

Kyle & Mom gatting ready to head to the airport after our GREAT week

I hope this is a good start - more to come soon!

Be sure to tune back in...