Wednesday, December 11, 2013
While adjusting to Life with Vi,
and Eden rocked second grade, and
the beginning of third. We were so lucky
to have a kind and amazing teacher for them last year, along with the continued
support of the rest of the team. They
learned so much, and were able to work through some of their challenges. They were also really lucky to be in a class
with a great group of about 10 girls who became good friends. It was pretty much smooth sailing over the
course of the year.
This year has gotten off to a good start as well. We chose to keep them together in the same class once again. They have two teachers who are splitting one job, but both seem to be good solid teachers and the girls don’t seem to have had any problems adjusting to the unique schedule. Our biggest disappointment at the beginning of the year was that none of their girlfriends from last year are in their class. I might have been more sad about this than they were. They have made a couple of new friends, but we have also had some “girl drama” that we had been lucky to avoid up until this year. It seems to be working out ok for now, and both girls are happy at school and seem happy when they get home. We had conferences last week and their teachers had a lot of positive things to say about their personalities and behavior at school, which is wonderful to hear of course. Both continue to struggle with math. It is coming along, but it certainly doesn’t come easily. They are both great readers and enjoy reading, but sometimes have a hard time talking about, summarizing, or explaining what they have read. This makes it tricky to know exactly how much they comprehend when they read independently. I am certain this skill will come with time.
Both girls are doing Brownies again this year, and finished up two seasons of Miracle League Baseball at the beginning of October.
started Choi Kwang Do lessons twice a week last February and recently tested
for and earned her gold senior belt. She
is doing an awesome job with that! Eden
continues to ride horses 1-2 times per week at two different barns, one for
hippotherapy and one therapeutic riding, though they are currently on hiatus for the winter.
Holland went to a week long drum
camp over the summer, and has taken a few drum lessons. Eden
has had one piano lesson with her aunt (John’s sister) and is interested in
continuing as we have time and can coordinate schedules. Eden
went to a sign language camp over the summer and really enjoyed that as
well. She would love to take lessons or
a class to learn more but I just don’t think I can cram one more activity into
our lives at this point. Not and still
maintain my sanity!
There are still so many holes in the blog due to the super busy nature of our lives.
I never talked about the horrible illness Eden had last March that caused her so much pain and loss of function, and brought our lives to a major standstill.
I never talked about us looking into the possibility of a second cochlear implant for
starting the process and the necessary testing. We are still on that path with
another appointment coming up soon.
I never talked about ordering and receiving
new pink power wheelchair, a Permobil M300, and its pros and cons. That was
quite a process (and still a headache).
I never talked about going to the Abilities Expo in
in June, and all the cool things we saw and the nice people we met.
I never talked about our super-fun summer vacation to
Upper Peninsula, and Mackinaw
Island . It was our first vacation as a family of
I never talked about
finally hitting a growth spurt and surpassing the 40-pound mark! I also didn’t talk about her newfound love of
mac-and-cheese for breakfast…everyday.
I didn’t talk about John and I celebrating our 15th wedding anniversary and our 20 year anniversary of being together as a couple.
What a journey it has been!
Posted by Billie at 5:01 PM
Sunday, December 01, 2013
Somewhere around the 5-month mark Violet turned into a super-delightful, good natured, sweet and silly baby. She is very affectionate and loves to give hugs and kisses to her family. She pats us on the back and says “Awwwwww.” She is a little mimic, with her head-tip, vocal intonations, and hand gestures, acting like she is having grown-up conversations with her jibber-jabber voice.
She has been a slow-starter with eating; not expressing a lot of interest at the 6-month mark when we started introducing some foods. She didn’t want a whole lot to do with food until closer to 9 or 10 months, and preferred to self-feed over baby food. Even now, it is somewhat hit or miss. Some days she feels like eating a lot, and other days she throws everything on the floor and wants nothing to do with it! She is a fruit-head, and will almost always chow down happily on blueberries, strawberries, watermelon, and grapes.
She still loves to nurse with Mama. She tugs at my shirt, says, “dis,” and signs milk when she wants to eat. She is an active girl, often trying to stand, bounce, and do headstands while she is nursing. She never had a problem going between bottle and breast, but if Mama’s around that’s what she wants. She sleeps in our room in her porta-crib, and still wakes at least once a night to nurse, though most night it can still be 2 or 3 times…or a million. I would love to sleep through the night again some day.
Here’s some shocking news for you…she is small for her age! She was holding her own, near the bottom of the weight growth chart until 6 months, then at her 9 month appointment she fell right off to the 0 percentile. Recently, at her 15 month appointment she was still at 0 for weight, but near the 20th for height, and near the 70th for head. Big brains, little body. It runs in the family. She currently weighs about 17.5 pounds give or take (isn’t that a hoot…I don’t even really know exactly).
She has also been a slow starter with gross-motor skills. At her 9-month physical the doctor expressed some concern that she wasn’t crawling yet, and suggested that I contacted early intervention to have her evaluated. I didn’t, but I did have 2 of
What she lacks in the gross motor area, she makes up for in cognitive development and language. At her 12-month appt we counted about 20 words that she was able to say. By her 15-month appt we lost track. She talks so much and gains new words and concepts every day. She knows most of her animal sounds (including “What does the fox say? ding, ding, ding, da-ding da-ding ding”), many body parts, hand motions to songs, and names of family members. She is learning tons of signs now, and recently learned to sign “nurse, please,” making it impossible for me to tell her no. She tells herself, “no, no” right before she does something naughty. She says “caca” before eating gross stuff off the carpet. She loves to empty all of our cupboards and cabinets, and the only time we have we have peace and quiet is when she is happily emptying one of her “stations.” She is SO LOUD! Her voice demands to be heard. She screeches so loudly that we are (jokingly) afraid our ears will bleed.
and Eden still sleep with a monitor
in their bedroom because we cannot hear them when they call for us, even though
they are right across the hall. We can
hear Violet clear across the house, no monitor needed!
She is gorgeous. We see a little bit of each of us in her, but she has a look all her own. She has big, bright eyes that strangers always comment on. They used to be gray, but are turning brown. She has shaggy, stick-straight hair, with beautiful blonde highlights that hangs right in her eyes. The moment she realizes there is a barrette or ponytail in her hair she yanks it right out. She has 10 teeth (6 on top and 4 on bottom), and it seems a couple more are on their way soon. 4 of her teeth were in at 6 months, and she has the most adorable toothy grin.
She is silly, silly, silly, and makes us all laugh every day with her antics. She is strong-willed and demanding, and annoys us every day with her antics as well (especially the food-throwing). She is most of all, extremely lovable. She adores her sisters and they adore her…mostly…when she isn’t grabbing their glasses, pushing all the keys on their computer, or screaming loudly at the dinner table.
enjoys carrying her on her lap in the baby bjorn when driving her
enjoyed walking her around holding her hands when she was first learning, and
now enjoys playing “chase” with her.
They both love watching her learn new things, and giggle at her
There have been moments of jealousy and frustration because she does demand a great deal of attention. Holland and Eden were used to being at the center of our universe for 8 years, so it has been an adjustment for all of us, but all in all, our lives have been enriched by having this little ball of energy and light join our crazy family.
We wouldn’t want it any other way.
Posted by Billie at 4:58 PM