Sunday, July 14, 2013

Adoption Week: One way we celebrate adoption (Gotcha day!)

Adoption week continues!  We have more posts to share with you so we are going to keep going this week too! 

Every year on the date that we got custody of our adopted children we celebrate their "Gotcha day" (ya know- because it was the day that we got-ya!).  It is different than their birthdays because it is a celebration of the day they became part of our family.

We adopted our kids from Korea so, they were a little bit older when they came home. My son's Gotcha Day is Nov 5th (almost 9 months after his birthday) and our daughter's is Dec 22 (8 months after her birthday). Since their Gotcha days are not near their birthdays, it makes sense to us to celebrate it at a different time.

Here is how we celebrate:

We don't do gifts.  We do lots of gifts for their birthdays so they don't need more gifts.  This is a family celebration day.

So far we have gone to a Korean restaurant on every Gotcha Day. Our kids love "Korea Food" (what they call the restaurant that we go to), and so do we, so it is an easy and fun way to celebrate their heritage. Since our kids are 3 and 5 we still pick the restaurant but I think as they get older we will let them choose where they want to eat. It might not end up being Korean and that is OK, it is about being a family!

Our Daughter, Nyah's,  First Gotcha Day @ Mirror of Korea

Our son, Kyan's, 3rd Gotch Day @ Mirror of Korea

Before we go to bed that night we tell the story of their journey home. We start back at the beginning - How they started out growing in their Korea mommy's tummy, how we wanted a baby so bad, how we had to do lots of paper work to get them,  how their Korean foster mom took care of them while we were waiting for them to come home.

We have photo books of our trips to Korea and we look at the books and talk about our first visits with them and how they acted.  We tell them how they acted on the air plane ride home. We show them the pictures of when they were crying because they missed their foster moms. We tell them about how much we loved them from the start!  My 5-year-old is just starting to get-it and ask some questions. We answer them as honestly as we can (age appropriately too).

Our son's book:
  Made using Snapfish

Our daughter's book:
Made using Paper Catorie
Our kids seriously love these photo books and look at them often.   

And that is it.  Just a day of being together as a family and reminiscing of when they came home to us.   We don't make it too extravagant but we do make it important.  And I think that is the key.

How do you celebrate adoption at your home?


Veronica and Daniel said...

My brother-in-law and sister-in-law are both adopted and we all get together to celebrate their Got-ya day each year. We do a similar thing with the food (one is from Korea, and the other is Chinese) and my Father-in-law tells the story of traveling to go and pick them up. They are both still young (9 and 5) so they love to hear the story and it is a special time for the whole family :)

Studio Carolina said...

We adopted our daughter in 1969, when she was just 3 weeks old. We have two older birth sons and wanted a daughter to complete our family. She is 44 now and is still a joy to be around. I think your celebration of the day they became part of your family is wonderful. We didn't do this, but I always told her the story of how we brought her into our family. From the day we brought her home, we always used the word (adoption), so it would never be foreign to her. She has always been very well adjusted about being adopted. I can sincerely tell you that there is absolutely no difference in a birth child or an adopted child. All of our children are special in their own way. I hope your children bring you as much joy as our have brought to us.

cathie said...

I have two daughters, both adopted as infants 27 and 23 years ago. We have always celebrated Adoption Day in our family-the day the adoption was final by going out to their choice of restaurant, talking about the circumstances of their adoption, and thanking them for choosing us to be their parents.

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