Monday, January 20, 2014

She Plays!

When Vivian first arrived home one of the things we noticed about her was she did not seem to understand how to "play".  The first time we gave her a baby doll she did not have a clue what to do with it.  We now know that there were few to no toys in the orphanage, and we also know she had little to no time out of her crib to learn to play, so it all makes sense.  She has struggled these 6 months to figure out how to "play".  She basically just likes to spend her days following me around.  She rarely gets busy playing with toys.  She will do some puzzles and has gravitated to some baby toys, but not the things you would expect a 3 year old to play with.  We have a playroom with an easel, a drawing table, a kitchen, bassinets, and PLENTY of baby dolls but, unless Kate is with her or encouraging her, she has spent very little time paying attention or playing with these things.  And if she does pick up a doll, or pick up some crayons, it doesn't last too long.

Until now.
We seem to have had a bit of a breakthrough.  I noticed the other morning that she was not by my side and when I went looking for her I found her playing with her new dollhouse.  I was shocked she was playing BY HERSELF, but what was even more surprising is that this went on all morning long.  She had some "visitors" stop by and join her for a few minutes, but then they would leave and she just kept on playing.


Then a few days later she disappeared again.  This time she headed downstairs to our basement.  It is VERY rare she will go down there without me, so I was again surprised to find her playing with the dolls.  She was down there for over an hour.  I am not really sure what was going on between her and her dolls (she plays in silence  ... does not talk to them), but whatever it was she was really into it.

I have NO idea what was going through her head here, but she started moving chairs and I wasn't about to interrupt her.
Then the baby needed to be changed.  She even took the diaper up to the trash like she always sees me do with her diapers.

It is pretty cool to watch her begin to learn how to play and pretend like this.  These moments where she gets buys are still in the minority (following me is what she does the majority of the time), but I think she is on to something. I also believe that being in preschool two days a week is going to help her figure out how to play more.

Her language continues to improve, also.  She is really trying to talk, has tons of words, is starting to put several words together, and can communicate just about anything she needs with us. 

She is also playing better when we go out to parks. She loves to swing and slide and she will actually do these things on her own now. She continues to make such progress. 

We are pretty proud. 


  1. Love these photos! They really captured so much! Where did you find that dollhouse?

  2. She is super cute, Maureen, and very special. These are great pics!

  3. Vivian is absolutely adorable. You captured some beautiful moments (the picture of Kate smiling at Vivian as she plays is great) and it's been amazing to see Vivian's progress on your blog.

  4. So glad to hear that it just takes time! Our newbie also does not know what play is! She looks a dolls with a blank stare and finds more fun in a piece of paper, but the box of toys well what are those! We had to explain to grandpa so that his feeling weren't hurt when he gave her a teddy bear and she didn't take it that she had never had toys.

  5. Hello, I just came across your blog and noticed our 'gotcha's' were on the same day. Then I noticed we were both at the Marriott in Guangzhou! I do think I remember seeing you and your husband and beautiful daughter down at breakfast a couple times. I remember how sweet and tiny Vivian seemed. My husband and I were there with our oldest son, Rowan and were adopting our daughter, Avril (just turned three in November). Anyway, I loved coming across your blog and seeing how well Vivian is doing!! And your post was very sweet, I don't always have time to sit down and think about just how amazing this journey has been :-)
    Thank you!
    Dana Clayton