Sunday, December 17, 2006

Hustle and Bustle

Whew...Christmas time is so busy! We have one party after another from now until after the New Year. Saturday we had my mom's family party at my sister Kim's house. Tonight we had my niece Jenna's birthday at my sister Missy's. Friday night we have my dad's family at my cousin Jill's house. Sunday during the day we are having John's parents and siblings and our nieces and nephews over to our house, then later in the evening we will go to my Grandma's. On Christmas day we will spend the morning here with the girls opening their gifts from Santa, then we will head over to my mom's for brunch and will stay for dinner.

John is taking the week after xmas off, so we will be able to recoup for a few days, then we are having people over our house on New Year's Eve to ring in the new year. It's such a BUSY time of year, but I am totally not complaining. I love the holidays! I love decorating, shopping, buying presents for my family, and most of all, I love spending time with the people I love. I am a total sucker for family traditions, and I look forward to introducing my favorite traditions to my girls, as well as developing some of our own.

Unfortunately, I have been so busy that I'm afraid I have neglected to answer some emails and to return some phone calls. I've gotten more than one message this week from friends worrying about me because I haven't called them back. So, if you have sent me a recent email, or have left me a message, you might have to cut me some slack. Actually, if you really want a response, you might have to leave another message, cause I've totally forgotten who I need to call and my emails are so backlogged I might never get to them!!!

Along with all the hustle and bustle of the holidays, we continue with our usual schedule of therapy and doctor appointments. Holland and Eden have PT twice a week at home (once through Early On and once with a private PT). We're thinking of increasing Eden's private therapy to twice a week beginning in Jan. Eden also gets once a week services from our county hearing impaired program, alternating between a teacher consultant and a speech and language pathologist.

Eden has recently been making tons of progress with her communication skills, picking up several words and signs each week. In fact, I have to mention (even though I know she is reading this), that she made her speech therapist cry this past week with her perfect little vocalized "more" accompanied by the sign. The truth is that she has her mom (and her Nana) in tears almost daily with the cute, smart little things she does. She is getting so good at initiating communication and using words or signs to tell us what she wants. For example, this week at my mom's she crawled all the way across the room, raised her arms to me and said "up, up, up." I picked her up and asked her what she wanted, and she rubbed her hands together and said "wash" and pointed to the kitchen. She was telling me that she wanted to wash her hands.

Another time she was sitting in her chair next to Holland and they were playing with a stuffed animal. Holland dropped the toy and a bit later Eden started signing and saying "more, more more." I couldn't figure out what she wanted "more" of. I kept asking, and she kept telling me no. Finally she signed "baby." I picked up the stuffed animal off the floor and she got so excited that I figured it out! I didn't even know she remembered the sign for baby! We had done it together several times, with her imitating me, but never with her coming up with it on her own. I thought that was so smart. She was trying to think of a way to tell me that she wanted that animal (which happened to be a baby Tigger), and she came up with "baby" all on her own. Very clever if you ask me!

In addition to all the therapy, we've also had a few doctor appts mixed in. They both had a post-antibiotics check-up with the pediatrician last week and got the all clear on their double ear infections. Eden had an ear drum that had actually ruptured, but her peed said that it looks good as new.

Holland had an appt with her ophthalmologist on Monday. I was expecting the usual..."everything looks fine see you in a couple of months". Unfortunately, we didn't get the "keep an eye on it" news I was hoping for. We've known since, well pretty much since before they even left the NICU, that H was going to be nearsighted and would eventually need glasses. What I wasn't expecting was how suddenly it would happen, and that her eyes would get so bad so fast. She went from being a -2 in her right, and a -3 in her left in Jan, to a -3 in her right, and a -7 in her left now. Basically, that means that she can't see clearly more than a foot in front of her face, if even that far.

Now, John and I are both in the -3 to -4 range, and we absolutely can't function with out our contacts or glasses. The weird thing is that if we had not been going in for regular checks, I would have NEVER guessed her vision was/is so bad. Aside from the occasional eye turn, or that she looks a little unfocused when she is tired, she functions really really well. She looks at books, watches videos, recognizes people clear across the room, etc. etc. etc. She knows her colors, many of her numbers and letters, imitates facial expressions, and just seems very in tune with what is happening around her. It just goes to show once again at how amazingly adaptible people are, especially children.

So, on Wednesday Nana and I went with Holland to pick out her pink wire frames. I'm sure she will be totally cute in them. I just hope we can talk her into keeping them on her face!

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

I adore your little girls they are so beautiful =) and I adore you for the strength that you have to care for those 2 =)
The holidays sure is a busy busy time of the year but is as fun and exciting especially with kids around
I love reading your posts and updates =)

Pam said...

I am constantly amazed with all that you do for your girls!

But the real reason for this post is because we received a BEAUTIFUL holiday card from you, and I wanted to let you kow how meaningful it was...
I love that you included the comparison picture of their tiny hands along with their current holiday photo. Your girls have grown up so much and accomplished so much - the pictures were a wonderful way to help us all reflect on the miracles of life during such a hustle/buslte time of year!

Thank you.

sarah said...

I just knew Ededn would amaze us all, and it looks like she definitely is! What an amazing little girl she is, it seems like she is bound to defy all the odds. That is so great that she is picking up the signs so well!

It sounds like you all will be very busy during the next couple of weeks, have fun with all of your parties! I can't wait to see what Santa brings H & E!

I am sorry that Holland has to wear glasses, but I am sure she will be just precious!

Amy said...

Those are the cutest pictures yet!

Kendra Lynn said...

The girls were adorable at church yesterday! I was so glad to see them!
And I am positive that Holland will look gorgeous in her new glasses.

Kendra

Anonymous said...

Billie,

You really are busy! I am glad we had time to hang out today. I love Holland and Eden's Christmas Dresses and the pic of Eden is the tub is adorable! Holland and Eden are so smart and fun and cute! They are even more wonderful in person!

Amy

Anonymous said...

I am so glad you and the girls are finally getting to participate in the holiday whirl of parties! The Holland crazy hair and Eden in the tub pics are priceless. Here's to a great 2007!

Anonymous said...

Now THAT is a do I can relate to!!
Love you all!!
Jules

Anonymous said...

hi holland and eden look so cute in there xmas dressis sorry to holland for wearing glasses but she will still look as cute as she is now

Laura said...

I know that you don't know me but I found your blog off of Kendra Lynn's site. I grew up in MI (Canton, where Kendra lives), so I know about Children's (spent some time there myself) and St. Joe's. Being hearing impared myself, I can sympathize with your plight in that regard. Your girls are precious little miracles and I have enjoyed reading your celebrations of their milestones and memories.

Laura