Monday, April 13, 2015

Aubrey Says

At Aubrey's 12 month well check up, she had no words.  She babbled a lot, and even alternated sounds in her babble, just no words.  I was told to keep an eye on her speech and if she did not develop any real words soon she would need to be evaluated.  YIKES!

Luckily for me I have a few good friends who are speech pathologists so I called one of them to ask for advice.  I was aware that Aubrey did not have any words, but I didn't realize it was a concern.  My friend calmed me down, she wouldn't evaluate a child until at least 18 months so we had time.

Aubrey made some progress by her 15 month appointment, speaking 3 unusual words; shoe, jump, and doggy.  We were on the right track and I began keeping a list.  Any spontaneous word she spoke was written down.

When I was asked about her speech at her 18 month appointment, imagine the look I got when I told the doctor Aubrey has 75 words not including names and characters...  Wait, you mean everyone doesn't keep a list?

I have stopped keeping a list, but its been so much fun watching her language develop.  Now with stringing words and phrases together.  Aubrey began putting words together by saying a name and a demand.  Phrases have just begun now at 21 months.  Miss Independent told me while I was trying to brush her teeth the other morning "I do it".
And her cutest phrase she says with an evil face and wiggling her fingers "I get you" and chases you to catch and tickle.

This is the best age :)
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Thursday, April 9, 2015

Spring Break Fun

Growing up we never took vacations over spring break, it probably wasn't until I met Brian that we started taking a trip while I was off work for the week.  I guess since I haven't been working it has occurred to us to take a trip the past few years.

Liam is off school this week and with lack of plans and my new babysitting gig we also have J's sister here with us.  She is the same age as Liam so he was excited to play with her this week.

A necessity of surviving the day with multiple children is to have a plan.  My children will beg for television if they get bored, and with spotty weather forecasted for the week I made a list of things we could do.  But turns out it wasn't necessary because the rain has held out until night time.

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Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Are you sure?

A few months ago I was approached by a friend, asking if I would be interested in providing an in-home childcare for her son.  YES!  There was no hesitation with my answer. 

When we began discussing the logistics of how it would work, Brian asked me "Are you sure you can handle this?"  Yeah, it'll be great!

When sharing this upcoming experience with my neighbor, she asked "Are you sure you want to do that?  When will you sew?"  Yeah! I'll sew at naptime, it'll all work out.

My thought process during this time was, Jude (the boy I'm watching) is the same age as Aubrey, she will be able to socialize with someone her age.  I will be able to bring in some extra money, lets face it- Liam's bills don't pay themselves.  And of course I was really excited to do all this without going back to teaching.

So here I am 4 weeks into our new routine.  THIS IS GREAT!!!
I am very much as excited today as I was the day I said YES.  We have had some ups and downs.  Aubrey has struggled to adjust to sharing attention, but its okay.  This will be good for her.  Jude is an absolute joy to have around.  He is ALWAYS smiling.  These two will learn to love each other!

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Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Celebrating Normal

Once Upon a Time, I could have wall papered our house in hospital discharge papers.  I rarely read any of them because it was so routine.  Tuesday Liam had his first surgery of the year.  It was the most routine surgery he'd ever had, but it was anything but routine for us.

Unfortunately chemo caused a lot of damage to Liam's teeth, so much he will have to be put under anesthesia to do the work.  But of course it was not as simple as just scheduling the procedure.  FIRST they required us to prepay for the procedure, we would have to wait to be reimbursed by insurance later rather than insurance paying the dentist office.  THEN Liam had to be cleared by his doctor for anesthesia, this did not happen.

Liam was not cleared for anesthesia because his tonsils were too big.  He has never had any infections or problems, they were just naturally big. After we found that out, I spent all afternoon calling around trying to see if we could find an ENT that would be at the hospital the same day as the Dentist; no luck.

After a visit to the ENT, who agreed his tonsils were large but not that it would effect anesthesia, we scheduled the removal.  Even though the ENT did not agree that it would effect the anesthesia, he did believe with tonsils that large we would see problems in the future and they would have to be removed anyway.

We arrived at the surgical center not so bright but very early in the morning.  Liam was his fun loving self, making his nurse laugh.  After he received his versed (medication to decrease anxiety) his already imaginative mind kicked in to hyper drive.  Our bags at the end of the bed became packages he had to deliver, as Liam attempted to climb out of his bed to do so.  Luckily I was right there to catch him.

After he was taken back for the procedure, I went the waiting room and anxiety settled in.  The whole procedure was supposed to take 15 minutes, but it was an hour before the doctor came out.  Parents whose doctor came out after ours were taken back to their children before us.  I just wanted to hold my boy! 

When we were finally able to see Liam, we found him angry and irrational.  We knew were prepared for this from his past surgeries.  He wake up from the anesthesia angry.  It took some time to calm him down, but then we were able to take him home.

Liam has had a difficult week, he has been in pain. He just wants to be held and cuddle up, but that is a struggle with Aubrey running around. He is most miserable in the mornings, ready to play in the afternoons. I am hoping he will go back to his normal routine next week.

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Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Big Brother Duties

If there is one thing I know, its Aubrey LOVES attention!  When be drop Liam off at preschool she know just who to walk up to, arms out to be picked up.  If someone else decides to love on her along the way, she wont argue.  So when we went to see Santa this week, I knew we were going to have a successful trip.
Brian decided I was going to take the kids during the week instead of fighting the weekend crowds.  The mall parking lot did not look promising when we drove up, so I was pleasantly surprised when I saw the line to see Santa was super short.  We waited maybe 10 minutes, the whole time in line, Liam was peeking around the set, Aubrey was chanting "Sen-ta"... we were ready!

When our turn came, Liam walked right up and climbed onto Santa's lap.  Aubrey turned around and ran out.  As I carried Aubrey over to Santa, she help on so tight (girl can pinch with her grip!). 

Liam was so ready to help his sister out, taking those big brother responsibilities seriously.  He patted a spot on Santa's lap where Aubrey was to sit.  He continued to have a great time with Santa, laughing, smiling and giving high fives.  Liam was encouraging Aubrey to give Santa high fives and loving the squeak Santa had in his glove.

Aubrey still was not eager or willing to sit on Santa's lap, but I left her there and hoped for the best. 
Thank you Santa Max, this is the best picture we could have asked for!

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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Aubrey {17 months}

As I was sitting in the car rider line to pick up Liam last week, it hit me; Aubrey is 17 months old. For some reason I was waiting for December 16th for her to turn 17 months, probably because she was 16 months the 16th was on my mind.

This is the part I miss about blogging regularly- I haven't kept updates on Aubs in months.

As I reflect on the last few months, I remember a conversation I had with one of Liam's doctors when he was this age. She was telling me about her children, she would come to work each month, talking with the other doctors and nurses, announcing "this is the BEST age". It truly does keep getting better and better!

At Aubrey's 12 month appointment, she was babbling but had no real words. I was aware of this but didn't think it was a concern. So when the pediatrician recommended getting her evaluated, I was quite surprised. But luckily I have a few speech pathologist friends who told me to wait. By her 15 month appointment she had 3 words {doggy, shoe, jump}. They were odd words, no mama or dada, but they were words! By 16 months Aubrey had over 20 words! Little girl just needed some time. She continues to surprise me each day with new words.

Personality is no big shock, she was born with personality to the extreme! It's still fun to see the little quirks develop. Aubrey has never been my cuddly child- sure she will sit on your lap to read a book and wants to be picked up for attention, but she doesn't just cuddle and hug, there is no rocking her to sleep at night. This month she had began hugging. Not just laying her head into you, but wraps her arms around you and pulls you into her for a hug! The feeling really does warm my heart!

Even if it isn't on command.

Her enthusiasm is contagious.  When you say something she wants and she nods her head uncontrollably I can't help but smile.

This is the best age!!!

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Monday, November 24, 2014

Being Thankful During Difficult Times

Our journey with this blog began over Thanksgiving 4 years ago, so I thought this week would be a great time to try again.

Every November people begin making lists of everything they are thankful for.  It occupies your Facebook newsfeed, it inspires self-awareness and discovery. 

I have had some many great, life-changing events happen in the month of November. 
November 13, 2004- Met Brian
November 26, 2004- First Date with Brian
November 24, 2005- Met Brian's family during Thanksgiving dinner
November 20, 2007- Closed on our first house
November 22, 2012- Found out we were being blessed with an Aubrey (Thanksgiving Day)

Even with all the great things that have happened to us in November, it is still a month I struggle through.  The one date that takes the most significance in my life is November 19, 2010; the day we heard "your child has cancer".  The year Liam spent his first Thanksgiving in the hospital. 

So through all this I work to tell myself- I am thankful for my home.  I am thankful for my family.  I am thankful for all the experiences this life has offered me.

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