What we did and when we did it. Sometimes.

What we did and when we did it. Sometimes. People, places and events to remember.

Thursday, February 28, 2013


Evan played "Aimless Sheep" in his second grade production of "E I E I Oops!" tonight.  He did a great job! 

 Check out that crazy hat.  I was responsible for the sheep shirt, but not the hat.  :)

He said his line clearly and loudly - and danced and sang for every song.  I am so proud of him!

It was fun to see his classmates and check in with his teacher.  I always thought I'd be super-involved when my kids started at elementary school, but since I have two other kids at home, I haven't been as available as I anticipated.  When Corrie goes to kindergarten next year, I hope to start volunteering at least twice a month.  

I want to know what's going on at the school anyway, but I also want to be very familiar with the administration before Ben starts receiving services from the public schools.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

The Boy Can Move

This Boy!

Physical Fitness

At practically 19 months, Ben isn't walking.  He's not exactly crawling either.  He is quick at army crawling, but until recently, he resembled a swimmer rather than a soldier.  He would put both arms out in parallel and use his elbows at the same time to pull himself across the floor.  

Ben has started to use his arms and legs in a regular army crawl!  He alternates his left and right arms and knees as he goes.  This may seem like a little thing, since he's still not really on his knees, but it is good developmentally for him to use his arms independently of each other.  

And ... drum roll please ... while Grandma was here, they made a game of playing on the stairs.  We have a short section with only two steps and Ben tried repeatedly to climb up both stairs.  He is motivated to bear weight on his knees and even tries to stand in order to get up those stairs!

Other Medical News (Praises!)

He attempts to do his own nebulizer treatment.

He had his cardiology visit on Tuesday, and he doesn't have to go back for six months!  The hole in his heart has not gotten any smaller, but he is growing and thriving, so the doctor said we don't need to monitor it as closely.  The plan is to help him grow so that when he is older, the hole can be closed by a cath lab procedure instead of open heart surgery.  We have seen the cardiologist every 6-8 weeks since Ben was born, and it feels wonderful to have six months until our next visit!

Ben was fitted for Sure Steps last week as well.  Sure Steps are soft plastic braces that will fit around his foot and under his shoe to help give his ankles more stability.  I think they will help him in his quest to dominate our stairs.  

Sure Steps are not covered by our insurance without a diabetes diagnosis, but after some running around on my part, and some letter-writing and form-submitting from assorted therapists and doctors, I believe our insurance will cover them at 80%.  So thankful!

Lots of good news for Ben lately, and I am glad.  He's having a developmental spurt, and it's delightful!

I hope to post a communication video soon.  He's been signing a lot, but he's been uncooperative on video.  And I'm still mastering our camera - that's why the photos are few and a little blurry.  :)

Monday, February 25, 2013

Corrie is FIVE!

I have been missing the blog!  Lately, real life has been busy and good, and I have failed to keep the blog updated.

Here I am with my Valentine of 18 years.  We were counting back, and I think this time we counted right.  :)  

I can't remember the last time we actually had a date on Valentine's Day.  This one was supposed to be on Thursday evening, but on Wednesday, Ben was diagnosed with strep and and an ear infection and a touch of bronchitis.  So ... we started him on antibiotics and waited till Saturday for our big date.

Corrie turned five!  Where did my little girl go?  I was so excited to make her a cookie cake - just like the one I made for Evan - when she told me that she wanted to decorate her own cake.  It was hard for me to give up my vision of the perfect cookie cake (LOL), but I let her do it.  The only part she let me do was writing the words.  And I was only allowed to put them on the bottom edge of the cake.

For the last 3 years (including this one), Corrie has had a simple weekday playdate for her party.  We invited some of her favorite girlfriends to come play and have lunch.  The girls got manicures (thanks to some helpful home-schooled older girls) and played with sidewalk chalk and musical instruments.  It was loud and colorful.  

I took lots of photos of the party, but forgot to ask if I could post pictures to the blog.  Oh well.

Here's my big girl opening some of her gifts:

And then our family (including Grandma!) went to Chick Fil A for dinner.  A birthday dinner called for milkshakes.

 So much fun!


The rest of the week included a cardiology visit for Ben and he got measured for Sure Steps.  I'll do a Ben update soon.

Maybe I'll try to do a DotMOM recap, too.  Corrie's birthday week ended with me taking off for Dallas for Lifeway's DotMOM conference with my great friend Beka.  I'm still processing all that I learned over the weekend.  It was challenging and encouraging and humbling - and so good to get a good night's sleep!  :)

The only thing that marred the weekend was the speeding ticket I got on the drive back.  Groan.

It is good to be home.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Random Thoughts on Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day!

This is the seventeenth year that Emmett has been my Valentine.  How sweet is that?  

I stayed up way too late last night so I could clean up a little and have some alone time.  Ben has been sick for a few days, so he's been clingy.  I finally took him to the doctor on Wednesday and it turns out he has strep, bronchitis and an ear infection.  I get the terrible mommy award (What's the opposite of award?  Reprimand?  Dishonorable discharge?) for waiting too long to take him.  Sigh.

After a long day of soothing a sick baby, I spent a couple of hours just being alone.  I did some dishes, read some blogs, decorated some cookies and did some Valentine's prep.  I set the table with our pink tablecloth and made cards for the kids and husband, so when they woke up this morning there would be a fun surprise.  No gifts or anything - just a homemade cookie.  :)  (Corrie and I made cookies for her preschool class this year.)

However, I may pursue cookie decorating as my new hobby.  I'm not great at it or anything, but I enjoyed making those cookies. 

Speaking of cookies, Ben is a smart cookie!  He army crawled over to the Xbox remote today, turned it on, and then grinned at me while signing "Baby Time" for "Baby Signing Time."  Ha!  He would watch Baby Signing Time all day long if we would let him.  Which might be OK, because he's learned several new signs, including "apple," "phone," "sleep" and "baby."  

I love all the signing!  Although I still can't always understand what he's trying to tell me.  You need a blanket?  Do you want to go to sleep?  Clothes?  A bath?  It's a guessing game.  

In other news, our house is hopping every weekday afternoon after school.  A couple of kids from the neighborhood have been coming over to hang out until their older siblings get home from the local middle school.  It has been fun to have the extra activity, but I have a lot to learn about setting limits with other people's kids.  One of the boys occasionally swears, and another one wants to bring over horror movies or play scary Xbox games.  I encourage everybody to use their nice words, and tell them that those movies or games aren't for kids at our house.  My limits are definitely being tested.

No pictures today, unfortunately.  Sick kids don't translate well to cheery Valentine's photo ops.  :)  Maybe this weekend!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Hello, February!

It's beautiful here in south Texas.  80's and sunny. 

We spent the weekend hanging out in our driveway.  Ben played with sidewalk chalk.  He drew a little bit, tasted a couple of colors, threw several pieces, and watched his siblings play around.

Can you tell that Ben's getting bigger?  According to the doctor, Ben weighs about 20 pounds!  This means that he is actually on the typical growth charts for the first time since he was 3 - 6 months old.  He's at the 5th percentile.  Yay for a growing boy!  I'm sure the chalk is very filling.  :)

What were Evan and Corrie up to?   Biking and basketball!  We also took a walk around the neighborhood and sampled delicious fajitas from our neighbors, but I don't have pictures of those activities.

Today, Ben and Corrie both had fevers and were really dragging, so we hung out inside and watched lots of Baby Signing Time.  We also watched our church's service online; the sermon spurred some good conversation with the kids.  Then all five of us piled into our bed for a nap, but that was totally unsuccessful.  :)

February looks to be full and fun - as long as the kids start feeling better soon.  We are looking forward to Valentine's Day, Corrie's birthday, a visit from Grandma, a paper deadline for Emmett and a women's conference for me.  I hope to do a better job of blogging this month, but I'm not making any promises.