Ella's personality has really started to come out. She has gotten much chattier, though for the most part she says mama (for many things like go get that, hold this), the orphanage staff told us yesterday her speech seems delayed likely due to her cleft palate. As far as physically, she seems to be in perfect shape, though developmentally behind where us American's would expect a 2 year old too be (which we expected being she has been institutionalized her whole life). She walks, though not steadily and prefers to hold a hand. All the sudden today we realized we weren't sure if she could stand up from the floor and sit down to the floor or crawl to reach an object. If something she wanted got out of arms reach should would point and say mama and we would hand it to her. Not sure if she was working us or not but German started a little "baby boot camp" of sorts and would spread items well behind her reach and when she asked he would say no, Ella go get. At first she scooted on her bottom and we thought, maybe she never did crawl, but after several round of the game she was crawling over to the objects. She also starting pushing herself backwards from a sitting position to stand up and fell down quite a few times leading us to believe this was likely a new skill or more use of a skill not used often. It is amazing to watch how different toddlers can be in just 24 hours!
Nap went ok, she fell asleep on our bed lying against me and woke up once and fell asleep on me for the rest (she slept about 3 hours total). She sucks on her 2 middle fingers of her left hand but so far only after she is asleep not to help sooth her during stressfuel time or to get to sleep
Bonding seems to be going great, no issues with eye contact, she comes to us with smiles, etc, but with this comes grieving for the loss of her old life and that hit hard at bedtime tonight. I held her for quite awhile while she cried (screaming at times) but she never pushed me away and was grasping my hand the whole time. Absolutely heart breaking to no there is nothing you can do but ride it through (I was soon crying with her). German took her for awhile and she is now asleep in our bed. We'll see how tomorrow night goes but I figure it is likely to be about the same for awhile since we go to Guangzhou (and a different room and environment) starting Fri night, then to my parents for a night and then finally home on 4/2. I have a feeling it may be some time until she is back in a crib of her own.
We're trying to keep a good outlook of enjoying the good times during the day and surviving 1 night at a time, we'll see how that goes :) Our next 2 days in Nanjing are free days while we wait for Ella's Chinese passport. Luckily the rain seems to have stopped and temps are rising to highs in the 50s versus 40s as they have been so we are hoping for some outdoor sightseeing time.