Saturday, March 29, 2008

Nana and Poppi got a puppy!

My parents got a new puppy on today. His name is Sampson. He is a 13 week old Akita. He is beautiful. The kids think he is pretty cool and Poppi could not stop smiling! Poppi was like a child at Christmas!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Aunt Marty!!!

My sister, Marcea, came to stay with us tonight. She has a interview with SLU (St. Louis University) in the morning and didn't want to have to wake up super early to make it to the city on time. She stayed with us and we really enjoyed having her. The kids really like it when Aunt Marty plays this airplane game. Will kept trying to sit on her face while playing the game, not sure what that was ab0ut.
Marcea is graduating in May from SIUC with a degree in Healthcare Management and is planning on going to grad school in the fall. She said that her interview with SLU's Healthcare Management grad department went very well. Way to go Marcea!!

Tell her bye-bye

Today while checking out at Target the cashier was googling over Will and he was smiling and laughing at her. It was really cute. He was being so friendly and happy and the cashier was loving every minute of it. When we were getting ready to walk away I said to Will "tell her bye-bye." And he waved!!! This was the first time that he waved good-bye.

We have been working on him to wave since he was about 5 months old. I could not believe that he actually did it. I am so happy that he waved after I asked him too, that means he understands what I am saying!! Of course I had to get emotional about it. I had tears in my eyes and the cashier thought that there was something wrong with me! She gave me the look "got hormones!" Oh well, Will and I had a moment! I am so proud of him.

So I tried getting a picture of him waving (he did it again when we got home!!) but all I could get was him clapping for himself after he did it! Oh well, he is proud of himself too!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Something New!

Since switching over from Will's caringbrige site to our new blog several people have mentioned that they miss getting the emails saying that I have updated the site, well it is back!! I have figured out how to set up the blog where you can subscribe to get email updates. You will see it on the left side of the blog. Just put in your email address and you should be set up. I am sure that we will run into some kinks with me just figuring it out and all but bear with me! I hope that you guys like it!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Follow up appointment today

Will had a renal ultrasound done at the beginning of the month. He has these done every 3 months since his tethered spinal cord surgery to make sure that his kidneys are functioning okay after the surgery. Sometimes nerves can be damaged during the surgery that can compromise the function of the kidneys. All of the ultrasounds have come back normal until this last one. The radiologist stated in the "findings" that there it was "questionable for early detection of medical renal disease". I had no idea what that even meant. Our peditrication had us make an appointment with a kidney specialist, a nephrologist. We had our appointment today. The doctor said that everything was fine and there was no indication that there was anything wrong with how his kidneys are functioning. The doctor said that the radiologist should not have put that on the report, they should have let the doctor make a diagnosis if there is one. What a relief. He said that we should come back in a year and do a follow up ultrasound then.

So they wanted to get a urine sample before we left just to do a work up and make sure that everything was normal. The nurse but a bag on Will when we got there. The bag fits over his penis and testicles and sticks to his skin around that area and catches the urine. I know, my thoughts exactly, yikes! When we were getting ready to leave I checked to see if he had went, no luck. He had not gone in over an hour! So we waited around for about 20 minutes with no luck. So the nurse said that he could just wear the bag home and then put it in a specimen cup and take it to our local lab tomorrow. Great, no big deal. I can handle that.

***WARNING- POOP TALK TO FOLLOW read at your own risk!

We got home, I got busy. He ended up having the bag on for another hour. I went to take it off and you are never going to believe it!!!! He had diarrhea!!! The child never has diarrhea and wouldn't you know this is the one time that he decided to get it! We usually play heck trying to get him to go! Lets just say that I didn't get a urine sample. I am going to have to call them in the morning and see what they want me to do.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Easter Sunday 2008

Here is a picture of the kids with their Easter outfits on.

We went to my Grandma's house (Grammy Abell) where we had a great lunch and then the kids had an egg hunt. Here are some pictures from the hunt.

Will with his egg. He was so happy about it!

Caroline and Cousin Meredith (Meredith's Mom, Kelly in the background) finding eggs in the tree.

Caroline and Meredith going through their loot.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Dying Easter Eggs

Caroline LOVES to dye Easter eggs. The first two years that she did it she cried that when there were no more eggs. This year there was no crying but she had a blast while it lasted.

Here she is loading the cups with her eggs.
Caroline showing off her perfect egg!

Daddy, Will and Caroline showing off all of their eggs.

This is a picture from the first year that Caroline dyed eggs. She was very upset that there were no more eggs! This was taken in 2005.

Caroline and Daddy showing off their eggs in 2006.
Caroline last year in 2007.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

I'm Back!!!

Okay, so I didn't just fall of the face of the earth! The kids and I went with Josh on a business trip on Sunday and returned on Tuesday to find that our internet service was out. We finally got it working tonight. I have been playing catch up with email and everything. So I will be adding some new pictures and telling you all about our week tomorrow morning!

I have updated the blog and went ahead and back dated some of the posts that I missed due our internet issues!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

New place to hide

We are getting new counter tops and so in preparation we had to remove everything from our bottom cabinets and remove the drawers. This is where I found Will and Caroline playing this evening.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Caroline and Walter

On Monday while Josh was at work the kids and I spent the day with Lora and Walter. Caroline and Walter have the same birthday (they were born about 30 minutes apart!) and they lived just four houses down from us in Bloomington. Lora and I became friends really quickly when we discovered that our kids are the exact same age!! When we lived in Bloomington we would get the kids together almost every week. Caroline and Walter are great friends and it was so cute to see them play together again.

So the kids and I took a cab (that was an experience all in itself!) to their house on Monday morning and spent the entire day together until Josh picked us up after he got done with work. It was really nice to see Walter and Caroline play together again and it was also nice to be able to relax and catch up with Lora too. We miss our friends in Indiana!
Aren't they so cute!!
Will tricked Lora into bouncing him (his favorite thing to do!). Can you believe that Lora is pregnant? She is actually due in 3 weeks!! I can't even tell that she is pregnant in this picture! She looks amazing and definately has the pregnancy glow!
Thank you Lora and Walter! We had a great time, Caroline is still talking about it!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

On the Road Again!

Josh got word that he would have to be traveling to Bloomington, Indiana for work on Monday and Tuesday. As some of you know, that is where we used to live (where Caroline was born) so the kids and I decided to tag along and visit some old friends. We arrived in Bloomington on Sunday afternoon and we went to our good friends and old neighbors house, Barbara and Jim. If you remember, Caroline likes to play with Jim (Jose Jim). The kids were very excited to see them and so were Josh and I. It have been over a year since we had seen them and it was very nice to be able to visit and catch up.

Barbara and I used to work together and we also used to live just a few blocks away from each other. So when we would go on walks in the evening we would often stop and visit with them when they were out on their deck. We would also see them every weekend in church. Barbara and Jim are great friends and we were very sad to have to leave them when we moved to Illinois.

Of course, Will was crying in the picture (the only time that he cried while we were there!).

Thank you Barbara and Jim for your hospitality. I hope that we are able to visit again soon!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Spring, Are you there?

Yesterday it was a super nice day. My Aunt Cindy (My Mom's sister) came up to spend the afternoon with us. She brought lunch and we decided to go to the park so that the kids could get out some energy. Will enjoyed the swings, I think that his mouth was open the entire time we were there. I think that he was trying to eat the wind! Will also thought that it was fun to climb up the slide. He could get up on the end of the slide and turn around and sit down, then want us all to clap for him! Ham bone!

Caroline met up with a friend from school. The two of them played the whole time that we were there. They had a great time together. Notice Caroline's hair bow? I made it! My friend Laura taught me how to make them the other day and I have been having fun creating new bows for the princess!

After the park we stopped at Bobby's for frozen custard, yum-o! They just recently opened for the season so this was our first visit this year. That is Caroline doing a "happy dance" for ice cream!
We had a great day and the kids both slept good. Thanks Aunt Cindy for a fun afternoon!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

My Really Good Deal!

Hi Everyone!

I am completely addicted to The Money Saving Mom blog, here. She gives all of the really great deals. I have been reading her blog for about a month or so and have really gotten into getting some awesome deals.

So this week at Walgreens they had Jane makeup on sale buy one, get one free. I also had this coupon for $2 off 1, that I printed off 6 times (you can really do that!).

So here is what I got:

1 Jane Mineral Powder $6.99
2 Jane Eyeliners $3.49 ($6.98)
2 Jane Eye Shadows $3.49 ($6.98)
1 Jane Blush $3.79
Total: $24.74
Coupon Total: $12.00
Free w/BOGO:
1 Blush: $3.79
1 Eyeliner: $3.49
1 Eye Shadow: $3.49

Total out of pocket after Coupons and BOGO: $1.97

WooHoo! I think that is a pretty sweet deal! I was really excited about my savings and I hurried home to tell Josh about it. He wasn't as thrilled about the great deal as I was (you know, boys and makeup, they just don't get it!) so I had to share it with someone who appriecates a good deal, all of you! If you want in on this deal hurry the sale ends on Saturday!!

Look at what Will can do!

This picture is from yesterday during Will's physical therapy session. He is wearing his new braces with his new shoes and he is standing unassisted!! WooHoo! Go Will!
He stood like this for a good long while, at least a minute. He even took some steps, about 7-8 at one time. He is getting there!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

New Kicks

So I found Will some shoes, not without frustration. I finally found him shoes at Striderite, after looking at 4 other stores. They are New Balance shoes size 7 double wide. They sort of look funny on him, they don't look like should be on such a little boy. Not to mention that they are super hard to even get on his foot! But I am happy that they don't have any characters on them and they are kind of cute. He wore them for about 45 minutes today until he was screaming to have them off. I think that he will get used to them pretty quickly and may be soon he will take off walking!

Sorry, I couldn't get a picture of him standing in the shoes, he wasn't so sure of them when I had the camera out. Maybe tomorrow.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

On the hunt...

for shoes!! Now that we have Will's braces!! WOOOHOOO! I actually went and picked them up yesterday but today was the first day that I put them on him. Lets just say he wasn't too thrilled about them. We are going to gradually increase his wear time so that he can get used to them.

Today I had to go to Target so I took a look at there boy shoes. Yuk! They didn't have anything that would even work not to mention that none were cute. They had tons of really cute girl shoes but nothing for boys. Tomorrow I have to go to Walmart, I will see if there is anything there but I am not holding my breath. If I can't find anything there I will have to go to Striderite. My problem is going to be finding something that will fit over the brace. Will has wide feet to begin with and then with the brace, watch out!! So I am going to be looking for a double or triple wide shoe. Wish me luck!

So here are some pictures of Will with his new braces. Caroline picked out the colors and straps. She was very proud of her choices. I think that she did pretty good too! They have dogs and baseball bats and balls on them.

Stuck in NM

Josh left yesterday for a business trip to New Mexico. He was supposed to be home tonight late, around 10:30pm.

I got a phone call earlier, caller ID showed AM Airlines, my heart sank. They have never called our home phone before. No worries, they called to say that Josh's flight had been changed and he would not be getting in until midnight. I called Josh to let him know what they had said and to give him his new flight information.

He just called me to tell me that he wouldn't be home until tomorrow. There is a blizzard in Dallas and there are no flights going in or out of Dallas. So Josh is stuck. Lets hope that he makes it home tomorrow. They told him that everyone is having to change flights that were to go through Dallas therefore causing it to be really hard to find a decent flight time. He had already checked out of his hotel and returned his rental car, so let hope that he finds a hotel and transportation.

Pray for Josh's safe return home.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

ABC Adventure

Caroline and I had fun watching this video. Caroline gets so tickled watching it. Imaging her giggling the entire time you are watching it. Just click on the link and it should appear.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Reflections from the weekend

This weekend gave Josh and I much hope and eased our minds about Will's future. My biggest fear for Will is that he will not be able to speak. I know now that even though he may never speak, he will be able to communicate with us. Some of the kids were talking with no problems, others used signing and gestures and others used talking devises. Whatever the means, they were all able to communicate their needs. I don't care how Will communicates, I just want him to be able to tell me what he wants, what he needs, if something hurts or if someone was mean to him. I want to hear him say "I love you Mommy" but if I hear it come from a talking devise or if he uses sign language to tell me, I am cool with that.

All of the kids at the reunion were happy and healthy. That is all that really matters, right?

All the kids love life. They love everything about it and they also love everyone in their lives. Most of these children meet no strangers, they open their hearts to everyone that they meet. We could all learn so much from them.

I feel as though I have met folks that are my family. These parents totally get what it means to be raising a special needs child, there was no explination needed. They already know. I am already looking forward to next year. I can't wait to see everyone again and to see how big all of the kids have gotten.

More pictures

Here is Will with Little Kayla. There were two little girls with the name Kayla, so there was little Kayla and big Kayla. If Will had long curly hair him and Kayla could have been twins!

This is Addi with McKenna (Erica's big sister). These two remembered each other from years past and are best buddies. I didn't get a picture of Erica but here is a video that her awesome big sister McKenna did for a school project. McKenna's vision

This is Jesse and Will playing with a toy. Jesse's shirt cracked me up. It says "I do all my own stunts".

This is Jeni and Mark (Erica's Dad). Jeni was telling them about her favorite Tom Hanks movie Castaway. Jeni loves Tom Hanks and knows all of the movies that he has been in. Jeni was the oldest of the RTSweeties at the reunion, she is 25 years old. She is so very sweet. She went around and introduced herself to everyone and asked everyone's name. She looked at Will for awhile and said that he was pretty cute.

This is Hunter, he loved the bouncing balls that someone had brought from home. He wanted to have races, he told me to say "Gentleman start your engines!". Hunter is in a regular classroom at school and is doing great.

This picture turned out fuzzy but it was the only one that I had of Big Kayla. Kayla and Addi are watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, need I say more! Kayla is so sweet, she looks like a porcelain doll.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Pictures from the 10th Annual Midwest RTS Reunion

So here are a few pictures from this weekend. We had a great time. I am going to post more tomorrow (blogger is being really slow tonight) and I will also reflect on the weekend then.

Addi and Kenny watching videos. Kenny just had surgery to remove ingrown toe nails last week but he was walking around and having a great time despite the bandages on both feet. Addi is just as cute as a bug! She is a rock star at her signing, she is awesome!

Here is Caden. Caden was all over the place on Saturday evening, everyone was Caden's friend. I fell in love with his smile. When I would get out my camera he would sign "more" because he wanted me to take more pictures of him (my kind of kid!!).

Troy (Jesse's Dad) brought his guitar and played music for us. Caden stood right next to him the entire time that Troy was playing. Caden would even help Troy strum the guitar by holding onto his hand while he was playing.

This is Eric. He was cracking everyone up on Saturday evening. He is a big wrestling and basketball fan. He was upset that his team (the Bucks) had lost. He told us all about his job and what he does while at work. He is a pretty amazing guy, Eric will be turning 22 next week.

Here is Candy and Chris. Chris is a real cutie. He enjoyed running around the conference room playing with his brothers.

William and Max. Max is only a few months younger than Will and he also has an older sister that is 4 years old. Josh and I talked a long while with Max's Mom and Dad. They are super nice people and they are huge Brewers fans, they may come to StL and go to a Cardinals vs. Brewers game with us!