For Owen Xu Wei Hoyt it has been a year in the states. It is not easy to capture all the changes his mind, body, and spirit have gone through. I will try to capture in this writing a lot of the things that are important to him. It will certainly have its limits because these words do not originate from him. I believe every adoptive parent goes through this. They think “if I could only know what is going on in their little mind, I could do so much more”. This is the adventure the entire family goes through being a part of the adopted process.
For those of you who have been around Owen, you have learned some of his favorites. Without any contest, his favorite color is anything orange. The louder and more orange the better. I remember the first time we went to a rack store… I let him pick out any shirt in his size that he liked. Let’s just say nine out of the 10 shirts were either orange or loud in color! So if you’re ever deciding on something to buy for him and colors are an option, you know the way!
The next favorite item is of a very, VERY serious nature. We’ve all heard the adage ‘the way to a man is through his stomach’. We see evidence through Owen that this wisdom has not changed! Like Scooby Doo loves Scooby snacks, my boy likes the pizza. I remember we were sitting in a hotel in Nan Chung, and it was the Lord’s will that we find pizza! The concierge knew English well and guided us to Papa John’s. I exclaimed “we are saved!” At that point we were struggling to find familiar food that agreed with our stomachs… Our poor American stomachs! I rushed back to the room, to share the good news… And when I did, Owen lit up like a Christmas tree and exclaimed “pizza!” We still don’t know where he knew about pizza, but apparently pepperoni is international currency. If something weird happened in the world, and the only thing left was pizza and fruit, he would be okay with that 🙂
In working all day with senior citizens, I have gotten common questions: how does he eat and how is he learning the language? The first one now completed, his language has grown in leaps and bounds! Considering you can count on one hand how many English words he knew when we met him… He has a full vocabulary. I won’t make wild claims like he’s the next great Asian scientist or Nobel Peace prize winner, but he is certainly smart and creative. He loves making unique creations with Legos, and also raw craft items. You may remember a picture from one of the original blog writings… He took a balloon and cut out paper and attached it to the balloon in a very creative way.
Owen is not an overly introverted child, as some adopted ones can be. He will be quiet natured until he is comfortable, he is a quiet natured boy…until he’s not! Then the words start piling up like falling leaves at the end of fall season! He is learning simple things to communicate beyond what he wants like praying at dinner, explaining a situation, or describing something he doesn’t understand. Amaya has been a great help communicating in a kid friendly way. Considering how much Amaya talks, he has plenty of opportunities to learn new words!!!
This first picture is of Christmas this year and the second is while we were still in China preparing to come home. Wow he looks different!