Thursday, April 19, 2012

Spring time!

Things have been skipping along in our house. We have been enjoying spring time in Texas ... a very short season in Texas so we need to make the most of it!

We took the boys on a car ride into the country and had a picnic by a creek. We picked up Rudy's on the way and enjoy BBQ sandwiches on one of my grandmother's quilts as we listened to the stream run beside us. It was a pretty perfect afternoon. After lunch, we parked Addison's stroller on the bank and waded in the stream. The boys 'accidently' fell in. Ahem. Addie got her feet wet too, her first time getting her feet wet in a natural source of water. She seems to like it... another water baby it seems.

Addison had her follow up ENT appointment and everything looks great with her tubes. Her PT noticed that she has uneven thigh folds which can be a sign of hip dysplasia so we ran into ADC for a hip x-ray that thankfully was normal. We feel like it's her muscle tightness in her left hip that is pulling her leg up into her hip socket, giving her apparent leg length discrepancy. Her left leg seems shorter than her right because of the difference in her muscle tone from one side to the other. She is getting a referral to a spasticity clinic to see if she needs an official diagnosis of Cerebral Palsy - hemiplegia or not. It's just another label that doesn't define her... but sometimes the labels do open some doors for her. There is a possibility that she will need to switch PTs to a clinic setting that is more specialized in CP kids and understand how neuro development affects gross motor skills, especially when there is so much going on in a hydro brain.

Our last week and half have been blissfully free of medical appointments! Something I am fully enjoying ! I went to Target all by myself Tuesday, April 4 and helped the Easter bunny out some (ahem) and picked up a hot off the press copy of Kelle Hampton's book Bloom. If you don't know who she is, google her for goodness sake! She's a mom that is only a few months older than I am, that has a daughter that has Down Syndrome. Unlike my situation, Kelle had no warning, no preparation for her life being turned upside down the day her daughter was born and she found out that Nella had an extra 21st chromosome. The eight weeks I knew about Addie's hydro before she was born were hell, but I am thankful that I had some time to prepare and wrap my mind around what was going on as much as possible. Kelle had a little family blog that went viral when she posted the brutally honest yet beautifully hopeful birth story of her daughter that was born with DS. Since then her blog has grown leaps and bounds and she has now published her first book, a memoir through the first year of Nella's life. Check her out here !

I opened a bag of Reese's peanut butter eggs (ha!) and opened her book while still sitting in the parking lot of Target and was crying at the dedication... it's that good. I read a bit more sitting in the drive way and then again in the bathtub, on the couch, in the bed... you get the picture. I stayed up til 3am reading and woke the next morning with swollen eyes but they were so worth it. I finished the book the next night before we had to head out of town. I bought two copies, one to proudly display on my bookshelf (Kelle's also a photographer and the book is beautiful and full of pics) and one that I keep hidden, with underlining and notes in the margin that I will re-read years to come and make all new notes as I grow in the journey of being a special needs mom.

We had to reshedule two of the therapies the week of Easter because we left out of town on Thursday. Grayson got sent home with an ear infection on Wednesday and had to start antibiotics. He was home from school on Thursday so we were packed and ready to go by the time Melissa got here. We loaded up 5 people and a billion pieces of luggage into Melissa's little VW and made our way through a list of errands and finally to mom's house.

On Good Friday, we went back roading looking for bluebonnet fields worthy of a photo op. And we found plenty!

We drove all the way out to Castell and then back up a back road that ran beside the Llano river, then across a slab crossing and then stopped a creek crossing where we got out to walk in the clear stream and take some more pictures.

The back road led us back to mom's road and we made a big loop back to the house. Three hours! The kids were all well behaved and seemed to enjoy it. Melissa took the boys in mom's car and I had Addie, Raychel and Mom in Melissa's Jetta. The kids enjoyed the creek so much... and after hearing my nephew Jared declare that he had never had a picnic, we decided to head back to the creek on Saturday - the short way this time - and pack a picnic lunch.

We took towels, a table cloth, peanut butter sandwiches, cookies, and a cooler full of sodas. Addie chilled in an umbrella stroller most of the time and we kept her underneath a golf umbrella, out of the sun. The boys and Raychel walked way up the creek and I sat on a rock in the middle of the water and put my feet into the running stream. Great afternoon!!

My brother, sister in law and nephews drove in from San Antonio for the weekend and I had texted them directions to where we were. We had the creek all to ourselves for two whole hours.

We returned back to mom's in time to play some mean 42 and enjoy mom's fried chicken for dinner. Addie had her first taste of rice and gravy!! Southern staple ! She liked it. It didn't take long before I realized how sun burned I was... my arms and thighs. Jack had a red face and Addie even had a bit of sun kissed skin. Very thankful we kept her under the umbrella as much as we did if she turned a little pink from no more in the sun than she was. ( I bought baby sun screen at Target this week for all our summer plans!)

We stayed up very late, dying eggs, bathing Addie, and threatening boys to go to sleep so the Easter bunny could come see them!

Alarm was set for 9:00am and we managed to get Easter eggs found, breakfast eaten, and all of us dressed and ready for church by 10:30am. Whew!

Addie was VERY good in church (as were my boys :) ). She was passed back and forth between me, Raychel and Jacob and fell asleep for about half of it. She didn't quite know how to take the first time we all stood up for a hymnal. I sat down with her and she was fine. So glad that her aversion to loud music like at the football game seems to be an occasional thing and not an every time thing.

We returned home after church and took a million pictures out in mom and dad's front yard.

Easter lunch was YUMMY! Melissa stayed home and cooked all morning while we all went to church.

Mom, Maurie and I all got the giggles... about something that isn't quite appropriate for blog posting... but was really funny nonetheless. There's no better feeling than laughing like idiots with your family that 100% gets you. (and your crazy sense of humor)

More dominoes were played after lunch. I edited photos and had to start packing a full hour before it was time to leave. All too soon our weekend away was over and we were heading back to Austin at 5pm on Sunday. The silver lining was that Adam was off work and waiting for us when we got home!! Hate having holidays without him.

Last week was pretty normal. The cleaning ladies came after a 6 month hiatus. I finally broke down and called them back and said HELP! Addie is doing so many wonderful things but I have to watch her all the time. She's pulling up which is amazing... but she's not very stable and falls a lot. So I can't put her down on the floor and not follow her around everywhere. Nor can I leave her in her crib because she's pulling up in there and I don't want to lower her crib cus it's such a great therapy spot for pulling up and cruising, so she can't be in her crib without being supervised. Long story short, I don't have a lot of time to do anything around the house ! I'm doing good to keep the dishes done, laundry going and to sweep and spot clean the boys bathroom before  a therapist shows up!

So.... seven hours later, two cleaning ladies had our house looking amazing... and said they really wanted to come help me once a month and would give us a pretty substantial discount because they felt good helping us since it was VERY apparent (my words LOL) that I was failing miserably at keeping the house clean!! So blessed to have those two cleaning ladies. Complete happenstance that I called them when they put their business card on our door last summer.  I have them scheduled again for the day before Addie's first birthday!!

Did I just type that?
First birthday?!!!

It's coming round the corner!

Addison will be 11 months old this Friday which means we have a month to get her party planned! Yikes! I ordered the invites Friday night and we have started to pick up a few things here or there. Melissa and I will be going to put an order in for her cake next Friday. Thank goodness for Pinterest. How did I ever plan a birthday party (or anything for that matter) without a pin board to put all my ideas and inspirations on?! LOL

I'll be sure to post pictures of Addie on her 11 months birthday this Friday.

~ Aimee

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