Welcome to my blog!

A blog about our busy family with two amazing kids, one of whom happens to have Down syndrome!

Sunday, March 30, 2014

The last 2 months: photo highlights

This post is mostly a photo dump. I can't believe I haven't blogged in 2 months!!

 Everyone's favorite dog, Maizy!

 Lauren was not impressed with her new shoes. I think they're growing on her.

Ryan finally getting to play outside!
Everyone's favorite dog, Clifford!

And to think I was afraid she wouldn't be able to open her own birthday presents!

Proof that they actually do like each other (sometimes).

2nd birthday cake!
The best looking couple around.

Doesn't everyone brush their teeth this close to the dog?

I'm baaaaack!

I haven't updated in forever. Largely because my Blogger app crapped out on me and I can no longer blog from my iPhone. Oh the horror!

Girlfriend is two now! She's the cutest little toddler around. She's cruising on the furniture, she can walk sideways and forward (if she feels like it) while holding onto both of my hands. Some times she gets really excited and has to sit down to clap for herself after about 3 seconds. She's also started singing (total nonsense, but with a tune) whenever we sing to her. She can now sign more, eat, drink, apple, spider, dog and she waves hi and bye. She also says a handful of words and will occasionally bust out with a couple of words strung together. She told me happy birthday last week, no joke!

She starts preschool in the fall! (What?!) I'm excited because I think she'll love it but panicked because it's 4 (half) days a week. I'm still kind of in denial.

We celebrated her 2nd heart-day on Saturday! She had her heart surgery 2 years ago, it's so hard to believe. At the time it felt like she'd never get better. And today you'd never ever know she was so sick. We are so incredibly blessed!

Ryan is a crazy 4 year old and SO much fun. Today he finally got to take a coat-free walk outside without the risk of frostbite. He's loving school and asks to go every day. Lately he and Lauren have been so sweet with each other, it's so amazing to watch. And obviously Jesus, my adorable baby nephew most often known as "Baby Cousin" makes almost daily appearances at our house. The best part is that by late September, the cousin brood will grow by two more kids. Both of my sisters are pregnant!!!

It feels great to be back to the blogging world!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

It's almost birthday time!

I've started planning Lauren's 2nd birthday party!!


I can't even believe she's almost 2! We're having a little party at my amazing in-laws' house. I can't wait to pick out decorations. And I'm pretty sure a girl needs a new dress for her 2nd birthday :)

She's seeing physical medicine and rehab tomorrow. It's known as our area's Down syndrome clinic and the doctor has a son with Down syndrome! I'm excited to hear their recommendations. What we actually decide to do is largely based on what our medical insurance will cover. Out of pocket costs for therapy is craaaazy when insurance doesn't cover any of it. Lauren's Medicaid coverage ends on Friday. 

I'll update after our visit :)

Monday, January 20, 2014

They're always so sweet....

Could someone PLEASE pass Lauren the memo that kids with Down syndrome are always happy and sweet? Snuggly and adorable?

Okay, she's almost always adorable. But now that she's almost 2 she is crazy! Does it magically occur to kids right around their second birthday that they can wreak havoc in many ways?

Those are chips. It's like a chalk outline from a crime scene! Look how proud she looks? She's not even kind of sorry. In fact, when I saw her I immediately exclaimed, "Lauren!!!" and do you know what she did? She clapped and asked for a kiss.
She's like a tiny, chubby, baby monster.
She also managed to lock herself in the bathroom this morning by getting in (with a suspected accomplice of about three and half feet tall). She got in, opened the drawer to the vanity and blocked the door from being opened. I tried to shut the door through the tiny opening with a straw. She took the straw. FINALLY after much coaxing she shut the drawer and I grabbed my make-up and deodorant covered baby out of there.
And now Ryan is kindly sharing a snack of sparkly hot-air balloon stickers with his baby sister. Who are these tiny creatures and how the heck did they get in my house?!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Almost 2

I haven't blogged in forever. We're busy! Were about to get busier... Come this fall I will be in school (I'm getting my bachelors degree in nursing. Not necessary but I want it), my husband is going back to school full time and BOTH kids will be in preschool.

Yes, we are crazy.

Lauren is likely starting preschool in the fall!! She'll be 31 months. Our district says that kids in special Ed can start preschool at 29 months. So we're getting a year less of early intervention than we thought. I'm terrified.

I am pretty sure Lauren will love school. She's a social butterfly! But she's my baby, I don't feel ready and this is a big jump outside of my comfort zone. Good thing we have all the way to September.

Lauren also recently had her 2 year checkup. Yep, she's almost 2!! She's doing well. She's healthy ( she had pneumonia but recovered well with antibiotics and didn't need to be hospitalized) and loved the doctors office.

Ryan wa sick too so we took him to his pediatrician yesterday for a re-check. He's A-okay and barely cried! He played with baby sister really well and even found a group of kids to talk to. He introduced Lauren to them (without any prompting) because she was waving like crazy and saying hi! He's such a good boy!

She's obviously pretty delayed. The one thing she scored on age-level were her social skills. If you've ever met Lauren I'm sure you're not surprised! 

She's pretty delayed in motor skills, even for a kiddo with Down syndrome. We're having her see the physical medicine team to find out if there's a "why" other than her already diagnosed significant low muscle tone. I'm sure they'll make some physical therapy recommendations. Unfortunately, Lauren hates physical therapy and our insurance doesn't cover it. I'm not paying a bazillion dollars for something she can't/won't participate in. Maybe I'll sign her up for a toddler gymnastics class or something, I don't know. We're going to have to be creative! Her Medicaid coverage ends in a couple of months and we can't afford to pay out of pocket for therapy.

She is crawling like a maniac as cruising on the furniture like a champ! She even took a few steps with a push toy a couple of times. I think that some kids will do things as they're ready an as their muscles mature, regardless of how many therapy interventions we throw at them. Or maybe I'm just telling myself that to make me feel better. 

I'm eager to see the physical medicine peeps to get their take on it! 

Monday, December 23, 2013

The luckiest

Tonight as I was rocking my sweet baby girl to sleep I couldn't help but think how lucky we are. How many almost-two year old girls still let their mommy rock them to sleep? 

She was laying with her head on my shoulder, sucking her left thumb and using her right hand to play with the hair at the nape of my neck. Then she reached both arms around me in a hug and said "Hi! Hi! Hi!" Then she leaned up and kissed me, resting her head on my shoulder once again. She sighed a happy  sigh, "tiss" and snuggled me again. (Tiss is how she says kiss.)

Who on earth wouldn't want this? How could anyone feel she was more they could handle? And yet I felt the very same way when we got her diagnosis. 

As we approach this Christmas I am so incredibly thankful for miracles. And I pray that many, many more people choose this beautiful, windy, imperfect and blessed path we're on.

Merry Christmas.

Just us

I haven't updated my blog recently. I think when I first started this blog it was supposed to be a Down syndrome blog. I thought I'd have a lot more to say! It's hitting me lately how little Down syndrome plays a role in our daily life. I thought it would encompass our family...Define us. But really we're just a family from the Midwest living life. It's pretty amazing.

Lauren and her baby cousin (he's actually bigger than her now but she'll always be five months older!)

Lauren loves books!

Lo saw Santa at school!

And Santa also paid a visit to the mall ;)

Check out this happy guy at church!

We're enjoying winter and playing in the snow. We've had school, church, work, all the stuff that is life. Merry Christmas!