Tuesday, February 19, 2008

How insane am I......

I decided that yesterday I would take all the kids to Bounce -U for open bounce and then to the movies.....BY MYSELF!!!!!!!!!!!!

This was actually the first time I managed to get all of them in the car in less than 15 minutes....Colin even Carried Miranda, and Adrian brought Jordan! They wanted to go somewhere! Anywhere! They were bored too!

The kids really love to bounce and I doubted we would all have survived if we had stayed home again (no school due to president's day!) ....and we all know my major parental desire is that school never be closed to celebrate anything ....accept maybe me winning the lottery.

So I decided to take them to BOUNCE-U and run off some of that energy that was so apparent and pent up due to the unseasonably cold weather lately. They had a blast!! Of course it is so different going to an open bounce instead of a birthday..... the kids actually have to wait in line.....and the best thing was NO one was givining Colin or Melea that much of a break!
Sounds weird....but I loved it when the kid yelled at Colin when he cut in line!
NO BREAKS!!!!!!! Ok at first I was paniced and I kept trying to get him to listen....but he didn't need me telling him....that he ignored like most things I tell him....but these little and big kids made a bigger dent (figuratively and litterally) than I ever could!
We actually had a blast and Miranda and Jordan sat in their strollers and had a blast listening to the music and watching all the kids!
I probably should have stopped there! But NO! I had to chance it..... the kids still wanted to see a movie and it was 3:30.
So insane mommy said...lets chance it!
Actually we made it through getting the tickets, changing all the diapers, buying the food, and getting a seat without a horrible issue (OK one family moved....but who wouldn't when a mom with 6 kids (three in strollers) sits in front of you.
First mistake was....I forgot the straws.....but Adrian ran back to get them (and I watched her...but don't tell her). I forgot to pack the milk for Jordan (URGH!!!!!!!!!) and I though I had enough cherrios for Eliza....but I was wrong!
Colin. Melea and Adrian were awesome! They sat in their seats (though Adrian & Melea got up and danced several times) they ate their food and shared the candy and were awesome....accept one time I had to take Eliza & Jordan behind the barrier.....Eliza was so bad......and Colin got up and brought me Miranda....who then got mad because she was loving the music and sound / lights!
It actually was better than our last trip to the movies....but I wish I had know what was up with Eliza! Nothing would satisfy here! And the movie...Alvin & the Chipmunks..... was actually not the worst 97 minutes of my life....I even wanted to get her to calm down so I could get back and watch it! (I am thinking it is like Sponge Bob....it grew / grows on me)
Course when I was getting them ready for bed. I think I figured out what was up with Eliza..... she had a huge "runny green pooey"! This type always makes her "grumpy" !
All in all we survived another "day off" and I can only look foward to spring break with all the joy and anticipation of a root canal!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Great Valentines Day for us!

We had a wonderful valentine's day at our household. Colin and Melea made Eric and I such cute gifts at school and real cards. Colin was so excited to give me mine!
They all seemed to love going through their Valentine bags and eating all the candy (of course), but it was just so much fun to see the light in their eyes.
I took Melea, Adrian and Mirnada to the mall for a girls night out...... and to get our birthday photos done for Melea and Miranda.
We actually had an amazing night .....this would be after changing outfits three times on Melea and twice on Miranda..... not mentioning about how non cooperative they were at wanting to get their photos done.
But we played in the mall play area, drank a cup of expensive coffee from starbucks and three glasses of milk and ate some cookies, then went to build a bear and bought some accessories for our bears and monkey!
Actually I was surprised....but Melea wanted to buy the wheel chair....she kept asking me about Nana. I was really taken aback because it has been over a year since Nana passed away and I didn't think she would remember her....let alone that she had a wheel chair..... but she was adamament her monkey needed a chair like Nana. SO I let her pick that one....and of course she also got another purse. Adrian picked out a Mulan dress and Miranda bought a pair of shoes and sequin purse. I am absolutely positive their bears have more purses than I do!
We then ate dinner at the food court! The girls had chicken strips and tots from Sonic and I ate a baked potato. I really do love food courts so we can all get something we like to eat. Course I am sure it will be more fun when they can go get their own food!
However it always seems to take us about 45 to 60 minutes to eat..... no matter how much of a hurry we are in. So in this time I did a lot of people / child watching.
I sat there again and realized how lucky my four little special ones are (mostly). They will always wear their disability in a way that most "resonable" people will recognize it and make accomadations.
I saw a mom fighting with her little guy for 10 minutes trying to get him to go ....he was fighting.... I heard a few people make a lot of ugly comments about what a "bad" parent she must be..... I on the other hand saw exasperation from her and saw the lack of eye contact, lack of speech (accept for a few not so nice word he repeated over and over).
As a parent of several disabled children who attend resource rooms...I have seen a lot of different disabilites that have no "immediate visual component" that is easily identifiable..... so I understood why this little guy was throwing a fit, I understood why mom couldn't give in, and I know she was not a "bad parent" just someone in the wrong place with a child with severe sensory issues and was probably autisitc among other issues...... but the rest of the crowd did not!
I realized at that moment how lucky all my kids are. Colin, Melea, Eliza and Miranda are easily identifiable as disabled! Allowances are made and there are certain expectations they have to live with because of this..... but in all ways this is somewhat easier than many of the other typical disabilities.
So I guess I have another reason to be thankful....besides a wonderful night with the girls (Eliza had a cold....and I am not that insane to take four tot he mall for photos by myself)..... persepective and understanding of other parents with "special" children.
So I may have not spent is with my "spouse" he sure gave me a wonderful gift though..... a night with the girls by taking care of the boys and the sick one (though..... I ded arrage for dinner and a babysitter to help him)
Hope you all had a great time with your loved ones too!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Happy Birthday Melea!

Melea is turning six today! It is so amazing to me to have lived with her these last "almost six years". She has changed and grown so much that she is amazing me each and every day!

Melea is currently talking in 3-5 word sentances consistently....at least for Eric an I on a regular basis. She can sign and say almost all the words she wants, though most days it is a challenge to get her to do it.

Her favorite question is still "whatzat mami" when she wants me to tell her some word or thing.... but ironically she knows the word....I think she just loves the sound of the phrase.

One of her favorite things in the world at this time is "Santa" and she has to come in to my office and kiss the santa pictures each day and tell him how good she is! (though I also think mom should get to weigh in on this....cause she is not always as well behaved as she thinks)

Melea loves to go to school and usually joyously shouts when she sees the school bus coming, and then you have to hold her back while we are waiting for it to stop. She is just so excited about going to school, seeing her favorite teacher "silly cochran" and doing the months of the year dance for her.

Melea so fiercely loves being a big sister that it is phenomenal to see her with her little siblings. She constantly wants to do what the "big" girls are at school and on TV that mom is actually starting to get a little scared of the emerging personality (though I am also proud and awestruck at the same time)

So Melea....today I remeber the day when Lori from Gladney called to tell me there was a beautiful little baby with ds that they had come into care unexpectedly., and were Eric and Colin and I interested in a new sibling and child? I was so excited I forgot to ask if you were a boy or girl or how old you were or anything.....all I remeber was how happy that thought made me and how long those next 6 weeks were till we could go get you!

I actually had to call back to get her to give me the information about you and how you were doing!

Happy Birthday Melea and I hope that you enjoy your trip for pizza to night and that we get spend them together each year forever! (but I know soon you will want your friends and not old daddy and me....but here is hoping!)

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Kids Drawings are so insiteful!

Melea is now drawing legs and arms and hair on her "little" people drawings. I just love looking at my children's art work....even if most end up in the file 13 basket (trash).
But I was really so excited to get this little copy from her teacher of her dry erase board from school.
That is an "awesome" M. She can actually write all the letters in her name....just not at the same time! Proof was when we were writing her valentines on Sunday! I wrote her name out and asked her to write it on her valentines.....she proceeded to write one letter on each valentine..... she got all the letter correct, just not on the same card! So I hope someone realizes that she is both "E" and "L" and "A" and "M".
Though ironically she recognizes any letter I give her (even if she feins stupidity for her teachers).
But it was so exciting to see her little "spider" person and though it has no shoes (Like Colin's) it is awfully cute and memorable!
Tommorrow my little pear will turn six and I can't wait to see how much she likes her new Dora dress!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Ironic as this sounds.......

it was really a boring week! After Miranda started school....and registering Adrian for KGTN and voting on Tuesday....and finishing our taxes (still got to do the trust for the kids though)......not much else happened here.

Eric was at a conference in FLA all week and I had the kids to myself.... so you can imagine the nulear bomb that went off in my house in my house, but it was absolutely boring.

I worked on making the birthday invitations to Melea, Miranda and Jordan's combined birthday, exercised a whole lot (about 10 miles walking / jogging this week) and for the first time in 7 1/2 years ..........


it was amazing! (and very quiet.... though Adrian really makes up for it when she gets home each day)

I also did a lot of laundry and thought about getting ready to switch out the spring clothes....but the fact I hate ythat and the 12 degree forcast for saturday made me wait for another week!

So this weekend, is finishing invitations, getting all the valentines signed by the kids.... and picking out what treats Mela will take to school for her birthday next week.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Miranda was off with her sisters

to school this morning! I swear she was all smiles and so excited that she couldn't quit squealing and making happy noises when the bus came!

I just couldn't get the five in one shot! One of them was always moving out of frame!

It was just amazing to see her about as big as her backpack! But I swear she could have fit in it Friday, but today she looks just a little bigger! I am so proud of our little girl!
What a big step for such a beautiful princess!

Sunday, February 3, 2008

QUIZ..... Jordan or Adrian.......

After going through the older photos for Miranda's birthday and talking to Daddy yesterday (he was wondering if Adrian was ever as chubby as Jordan) I was struck by the similairities that everyone mentions!

All these photos are either Jordan or Adrian at about the same age. Which is Princess Grumpy and which is Sir Peas-a-lot?





SO the question is....... is it just superficial (on the outside) or will my Peas-a- lot turn in to a Grumpy soon!

Well..... I thought I would list the steps in the "potty training guide" for/by my kids

I have five little ones in diapers or pull ups and a little princess who thinks should be able to wear a pull up cause Colin & Melea are older.... so there is way to much talk about urination and defication in our house so I will let you in on the steps and where each one is to date!

1) We figure out we don't like having our diaper changed! But we also don't like being messy either! (Miranda is here..... but she is well on her way to step 2)

2) We learn to take off our own clothes and start exploring what is on our bottom and have a lot of fun making mom put our clothes back on all the time (Jordan is here...... just today I have put his pants back on 11 times) as well as get really interested at putting stuff in the potty and playing in the water seems to happen here!

3) We now consistently take off all of our clothes and bottom covering and like running around butt naked and peeing on anything while mom chases us! As well as requiring me to be ever vigellent at locating the lost diaper(s) and missing clothes...... (Eliza is here)
This is one of my least favorite stages.... only trumped by the poop scooting & painting stage. It is also characterized by putting diapers in weird spots or making hats from them! Eliza is an actual master of gettin her diaper off through her leg or some other contortion I have yet seen her physically do.... but the clothes sometime stay on (or she puts them back on!)
Most of my children.... when in stage three........ get to wear pj's to nap in (cause it saves time and carpet cleaner). I just have to put it on backwards so they can't get out. This is the ironic thing from all that OT practice and learning to zip up your own coat.... you also learn to take of your clothes! Yeah (with a sarcastic note!) The backward PJ thing is after we have mastered safety pins, and safety pins through the zipper. If they are as good as colin was... eventually we have even had to safety pin the backwards pj mode.

4) The poop sco0ting and painting stage. Enough said.... no one is here now! Thank theLord! but believe it or not this was Adrians favorite stage! SHe stayed in it from 13 months till she was potty trained fully at about 27 months!
5) They I have to point to my body parts and ask you what they are called tell you what they do phase......
I pretty much thank heaven that Colin doen't talk cause he runs around signing penis and poop a lot and I am happy yhta most people do not know sign language well enough to interpret this.......
however this is a major break through cause at least he knows he poops & pees.... I think he was so confused for a few years about where it came frome.... he would always look at me puzzled and put his pout to the side and shrug his shoulders. (Colin is sort of here..... but at least he now keeps his diaper on at night! So I hope no more stage 4 cause he has outgrown most of the zipper one piece pj's and is so limber I have actually watched him wriggle out of them

6) We are trying to be potty trained and go sometimes ....WHEN WE FEEL LIKE IT!!! but other times we just fill up our pull up and say we do not want to be changed and protest at the top of our lungs if mommy makes us change our pants! (Melea is here)

Fun thing about this stage..... is there seems to be no rhyme or reason about when she wants to use the potty...... it is her idea. I am looking foward to summer when she can just wear her underware & swim suit outside to play and then if she "misses" she gets an immediate consequence that we can't do in the house.....

Ok really this mom is just dreaming for summer with diaper / swimsuit days and 1/2 the laundry I have in the winter!

7) The I wear underware inside my pullup so I know when I pee and mess up. (Melea is here on the weekends and after school) It really makes her remeber.... so I know when we can do this almost all day without the pull up .....she will be finished up soon

8) In the stage where we yell at the top of lungs in the mall...."MOM why don't you just pee in your diaper!" When I have just told Eric I need to find a bathroom NOW, and your daughter thinks a sanitary napkin is a grown up diaper. (ADRIAN IS HERE....again there are days I am glad Colin only signs and Melea doesn't always speak clearly!)

9) We actually wear underware and are required to make 8 trips to the bathroom when we are out for 2 hours..... just so we can visit the toilet, say hi, and make sure we know where it is in case we need it (Adrian also here!)

10) The day I am most looking foward to....... not carrying a diaper bag (OK mine is a huge back back) anymore.... but a real small and sleak purse! I am thinking 2015 to 2018 as a possibility! With my luck backpacks will be the rage then!

Saturday, February 2, 2008

We got to celebrate at our Favorite Mexican place

Miranda's Birthday today!!!!!

After digging out of the almost 10+ inches of snow; finding the van and getting all the children dressed and in the van..... we went to our favorite place..... to celebrate. I felt bad cause we didn't go yesterday, but the upper road to our house and the driveway didn't even get plowed till 4 pm friday.... and I wasn't in the mood to get us all killed for mexican food (though ADRIAN sure was)

The let Miranda wear the red velvet hat and gave ehr her ice cream and sang to her...... she hated the hate, but giggled the whole time they were singing!

And of course she loved the ice cream! SO did the rest of the children! Except for some reason Eliza would only eat it if I feed it to her (not daddy and she would not feed herself the ice cream) and Jordan eats ice cream like "DATA" from TNG in the one where he tastes it and it is revolting! Then asks for more.....he makes these amazing little cute funny, but goofy faces!

After that....we of course had to make a trip to walmart.... to get those last little school supplies, diapers, and new shoes, socks, and a new pair of laces for her old pair of shoes!

I actually managed a cart and COlin, Melea, Adrian and Miranda by my self...... three walkers and Miranda in the cart! Colin was the best listener and was so well behaved....Melea on the other hand ended up in the cart toward the end cause she kept wandering away in the shoe aisle .....side note also made I would not buy her or Miranda another set of "Dora" shoes..... OK really made I wouldn't buy them for her!

We had a great afternoon and it was so nice after being snowed in for almost 48 hours!

However the best surprise was getting home and finding a birthday package for Miranda from her birth grandparents! She and the rest of the kids were so anxious and Miranda has finally learned to love opening presents! I think she still likes that part better than finding out what is on the inside!

Friday, February 1, 2008

My littlest Princess is THREE TODAY!!!!

Three years ago today, a beautiful and precious angel feel to earth into the arms of a wonderful and loving couple. Our little girl was a complete surprise to this couple and for their own personal reasons they went in search of a family to raise her because they felt they would not be able to.

With the greatest love and joy Eric and I were accepted to be this beautiful angel's parents. We named her Miranda Olivia! with in an hour of learning about her! After four long weeks and a few days she was placed into our family's open Arms on March 4th 2005 throiugh the help of the Gladeny Center for Adoption.

So today we celebrate her third year on this planet today! I thought I woul lookback and remember how little she was and how far my beautiul "Manda's " has come!

We have been through one open heart surgery for her AV canal defect at 10 months; lots of prayers and worried nights; almost 450 hours of early intervention therapy, tons of prescription formula and hours fighting to make her eat and gain weight! 6 ISFP's; a developmental evaluation; her first IEP and conference, 3 different hospitalizations for pneumonia ( one was eleven days); 2 cardiac cathederizations, 3 sets of ear tubes; an adenoidectomy, a overnight sleep study (did not involve sleeping on her part); 2 MRI's, a cat scan; an EEG; a ton of xrays, lots of bloodwork, two ambulance rides, oxygen at home, monitors and sleepless nights listening for them to go off, and lots and lots of head colds, severalear infections , permanent excema, nystagmus that could make you dizzy if you watch it, a TIA and most likely a seizure disorder too! and of course gallons and gallons of snot!

BUT WE WOULD NEVER TRADE A MINUTE OF THAT FOR ANYTHING! SHe is happy and thriving and and utterly an amazing little girl! SHe laughs she makes her sounds for animals, she is starting to sign more words and becoming her own little person whose favorite word for her mom is "NO" or "NO WAY".

She loves to eat and to play and to be held and to be tickled and sung to. SHe always points to her swing outside and wants to be in it with the "big" kids! She is growing and changing so rapidly that Eric and I are anxious and excited to see where she will go from here and is in such a big way going to benefit from starting school next monday that even I can't imagine what the next year will bring for us all accept the joy of being part of it with her!

So Enjoy the photos of my littlest princess in the Grumpy Family! and see how she has changed....... and we have so much planned! I know we will be sharing with you!

So happy Birthday my dear Miranda! And remember
we all love you! Especially all your sisters!