Archive for November, 2012

Moo Cow

November 25, 2012

Mike and I went shopping with Grammy Thomas and Jillian on Black Friday afternoon. We were in Carter’s and Grammy gave Jillian a plush cow toy to look at. Once Jillian got her hands on that cow there was no letting go. I’ve never seen her react to a toy like that before. We have given her toys to “test out” many times and she usually doesn’t bat an eye when you take it away from her. Not this time. She cried and cried. Needless to say, we had to end up buying it. It was hard to even give it to the cashier to check out. But once it was hers and out of the box she was a happy camper.

Thanksgiving 2012

November 25, 2012

We traveled out to NJ to Grammy and PeePaw’s for Thanksgiving. It was a nice relaxing visit. Kids laughing and playing with each other and their grandparents, naps with Maxie, shopping, and lots and lots of good food. Mike and I even got some kid-less time to go on a date to the movies and to do some Black Friday shopping.

As always Mike and I have a lot to be thankful for this year. Our three healthy and beautiful children, good jobs that allow us to put a roof over our heads and food on the table, wonderful supportive families, an amazing dog, and great friends.

Our perfect little family… the most thankful for them.

Happy little girl with the same thanksgiving hair bow as last year.

Owen relaxing and watching the parade.

Jillian pointing to the float that looks like our Elf on the Shelf, Christopher.

She also loved the Buzz float.

Boys having fun.

Jillian checking out the new Rudolf toy.

Playing McDonald’s

Ready to eat.

Benny telling us he is thankful for his grandparents and Jillian.

Owen telling us he is happy for his family and his favorite holiday – Valentine’s Day.

All three kids in the big bath tub!

Time to play ball outside.

I wanna go outside too!

Time for a post playing outside snack of chips and dip.

A girl and her dog

November 12, 2012

I’m trying to get caught up downloading and backing up pictures from the past few months. I came across these from September I forgot I took and had to post them.

These pictures totally embody our daughters love for Maxie. Jillian just adores her and Maxie lets her love up on her, no matter how rough. Jillian is always climbing on her, giving her hugs by wrapping her body around Maxie’s, etc.

Maxie has gone through a lot this past year as she is getting older. We dropped a good chunk of change at the vet for her to have knee surgery and visits for a few other problems, and I would do it again in a heart beat. Our kids, especially Jilly, just love this dog. As do we. I’d spend whatever I needed to in order to keep her with us as long as possible.

Pirate Party

November 10, 2012

For the past few years, my sister has had an evening adult Halloween party. Now that her boys are getting older and have friends from school, she decided to have a day time party for the kids instead. She had a pirate theme and it was so fun. She had all kinds of food, drinks, and lots of games for the kids like bobbing for apples, bucket toss, and a version of “hot potato” with a little pumpkin. She even had glow sticks, 2 pinatas, and blow up swords.

I bought pirate gear for the kids to wear. Jillian even had leggings on with a glittery skull. I did bring the boys costumes too. All the kids at the party had theirs on for a while, then changed into regular clothes for the games.

Every kid there had so much fun. Lots of laughs were had by all. It was a really great afternoon and I look forward to the party again next year.

Mummy Roman

Pirate Sal wants in the picture too!

I’m ready for the party!

Ahoy, Ben!

Arrggh!

With the wonderful host, Aunt Jenny.

Sal helping his daddy get the bobbing for apples ready.

Roman dives right in!

Alex got one!

Jilly is thinking to herself “CHARGE!”

O’s turn.

Even Sal gave it a shot.

Jillian clapping for the kids playing the game.

Benny getting ready to play “Hot potato”

Jilly was all pirate partied out.

So I don’t forget…

November 8, 2012

This blog has turned into a memory book for our family. I like to include pictures with all posts, but I’m going to start telling some stories too. The kids are so funny and interesting and evolving and changing so much each day. There is many things that happen in our daily lives that I don’t want to forget, so I’m going to record them here so they don’t get lost in time.

Here are some updates on the kids to get me started. This is more for me to look back on, hence why it’s a book, but feel free to read my rambles.

Owen –
O is rocking school this year. I am an over the moon proud mama. Kindergarten was rough for him. He got in a lot of trouble, had far too many incident reports, and didn’t work to his potential. It was a struggle for him and us. Getting his Asperger’s and ADD diagnosis was a starting point and through the help of his therapist, Ms. Melinda, the sensory teacher at school, Mrs. Ritter, and all the other support he has been getting from WCH (like OT, speech, social skills, etc.) he is thriving in first grade. He’s had two small incidents this year, but nothing too major. They have a color coded behavior system. We went from seeing yellows and reds last year to almost all days being all green and he’s even received the “Can Do Kid” award 6 times for ORANGE behavior (which is the best you can get). He’s learning to love writing, drawing and coloring. All his work is coming back with almost no errors and he’s happy to be at school. As a parent this is a huge weight lifted off my shoulders.

We still have a long road ahead of us to make sure he stays on this path and are working through some new challenging behaviors that appear from time to time, but we’re making huge strides.

The boy loves his sleep, although he hates bedtime. There is teenager DNA in him already. He’ll put pillow and blankets over his face when he doesn’t want to get out of bed when you wake him up in the morning.

He started CCD this fall. He’s not a fan of church, so I was nervous he’d fight me on CCD, but the kid loves it. We had to miss it one weekend and he was sad. He looks forward to his Sunday morning with Mrs. Kern.

He loves his DS (which is missing at the moment… grrr), the Wii, playing at the neighbor’s house, and is starting to get into Star Wars and Legos. He’s a big boy now. Taller than Alex and comes up to almost my chin. Hard to believe.

Benny –
Some may think he is the forgotten middle child. Nope. We have lots of fun with Ben, he just hates to have his picture taken, but he is getting better. Over the past year I learned not to upset him and respect his hatred for the big black box. It’s not that I love Owen or Jillian more, I’m just letting him be a kid and most kids that age go through this stage.

Like Owen, Benny also had a hard time at daycare in the Spring and it lead to us removing him from the center where we work. He was home with Grammy Thomas over the summer and at the end of August he started going to River of God… the same place Owen goes for before and after school care and summer camp. At the time all this went down I felt bad for Ben and was really sad for him (and us)… it wasn’t his fault for the issues at the old school, it was the staff that wasn’t understanding or patient. But my faith in God that he has a plan came through again because indeed, this ordeal showed me once more that everything happens for a reason. Ben is doing so much better at his new school. His behavior problems aren’t as bad, he’s enjoying himself, and they are accepting of him for him. Having a child with Sensory Processing Disorder and ADD can be hard for outsiders to understand because it’s difficult to explain, but the teachers and staff at River of God listen to us, will work with us on new behavior techniques, and let him be a kid. He can bring a lunch he likes. He can bring a toy from home that makes him feel comfortable, and he can be dropped off and picked up with Owen. He’s actually learning things and coming home and telling us all about school. This never happened before. This new school is just what he needed.

Benny also started OT a few months ago to help with his sensory issues and some fine motor delays. We’re starting to see progress and again are thankful for the right people coming into our lives at the right time. It’s been a God send as parents to have such wonderful people guide us through this journey with the boys.

Oh and as with all 4 year olds (and 6 year olds for that matter… OWEN), we are going through the stage where certain words are just hysterical like poop, fart, punch, moo, etc. Ahhhh… I’ll be happy when this passes.

Benny loves what Owen loves… the DS, Wii, Star Wars and Legos. He’s still a comedian and sometimes the things that come out of that child’s mouth having us laughing tears. He is still the pickiest eater ever. The OT has us working on a 35 step program to try and get him to eat new foods. Progress is slow. I sometimes wonder how he can survive on how little he eats. I guess I better enjoy it while I can because before I know it, he’ll be a 6’3’’ teenager eating me out of house and home.

Jillian –
Little Bit is growing like a weed. I know I’m behind on updates from her… I never even posted her 12 month picture on the chair (I’ll have to postdate it when I get around to it…**hanging head in shame**).

She’s a babbling fool that little girl is. She acts like she is having conversations with you. Her facial expressions are so animated and put the biggest smiles on our faces. She is nodding yes when you ask her a question. She carries things around and brings things to you. Like yesterday morning she brought Mike his sneakers. She tries to be like us. If she sees the boys playing Wii, she’ll pick up a Wii-mote to act like she is playing too. If we are on the computer, she’ll get her toy one and play alongside us. She use to hate TV, but now she loves Sprout and sometimes Disney Jr.

She’s hitting the stage that just amazes me. The stage where you watch your child really start to discover the world around her. Like recognizing something is upside down and turning it right side up, or handing her a sock and watching her try to put it on her foot. She’s also a little problem solver. For instance, she realized the ottoman in the family room can open. She will try to push up on one side and if it doesn’t open, she knows to go to the other side to make the top go up. And today, I put soap on her hands and without me doing a thing, she started to rub them together. Every day is something new. It’s an amazing thing, but makes me a little sad b/c with each new thing she does, a little of the dependent baby disappears. This week she moves up to the 1 year old room at daycare and I know all these new discoveries are going to explode once she is around the older kids.

She’s not really saying any more words. So far we have Mama, Dada, Hi, and Oh. I think she tried to say bear the other day and her teacher said she thought she said “Melmo” for Elmo. She signs “all done” and “milk”, and has her own little “give me” sign when she wants something. She will reach her arms out and open and close her hand.

She’s gone from being a great eater to one almost as picky as Benny. She won’t eat meat. She’ll only eat pasta on occasion, but she’ll eat cereal, crackers, cookies, fruit and sometimes veggies. I had to put her back on Oatmeal and baby food to make sure she gets enough nutrients. The girl goes nuts over squeeze packets of baby food. She even knows where we keep them and will point to the cabinet when she wants one.

Her hair is curl city in the back, but the front doesn’t seem to be growing at the same pace. It’s finally starting to hit her ears and she’s trying to get use to it. If it bothers her, she’ll pull the strands of hair away from the side of her face. She’s thankfully still OK with headbands. =)

She is just starting to get into toys. She likes the play food at school and she just adores books. She’ll sit and just flip through them, page after page. Put her in a room full of toys and books and she’ll beeline for the books, guaranteed.

She’s doing good sleep wise. We’re starting to be able to put her to bed awake and she’ll put herself to sleep. Jilly is not happy with us for the first 60 seconds. She’ll cry, realize one of us is not coming back, and then reach down for a binkie from the stash in her crib, grab her blankie and go to sleep. Thank goodness for the video monitor. It lets me know she’s OK and I don’t need to go in to see if something is wrong.

The next few months should be interesting to see how she changes. She’s my last so I have to soak it all in.

So… if you made it this far, kudos to you for reading all of this. I know some (like my dear husband) will think this is a little over kill for the blog, but I know my future self will be thanking me in 20 years for taking the time to document these types of things.

Halloween Night

November 6, 2012

Many of the townships in our area switched Trick or Treat to be on October 31 b/c usually it’s the Thursday before. At first I was happy, but then Sandy came through and put a bad twist on the evenings weather. It was cold, wet and windy so instead of Trick or Treating, we went to the Harvest Party at the boys daycare (more coming to the blog on that soon… hopefully). Here is one picture of the kids in their costumes. We didn’t get “in to” Halloween this year like we have in the past, but they still look festive.

My Cheeseburger, Cupcake, and Golden Power Ranger.