Thursday, April 22, 2010

Return from Paradise





After our long and emotionally draining winter that Mike and I had, we just knew that in order to "regroup" and "re energize" we had to get away.
Mike's parents own a condo on Fort Myers Beach and we got super cheap airline tickets so off we went.
We are so blessed that Mike's dad and my mom agreed to watch the kids so we could do just that.
Watching the kids, house, and two dogs is no easy task. This we know. I loved the fact that the kids were just as excited to spend time with their grandparents as we were to get away.
The homecoming was awesome!! To come home to my sweet kids was so nice. It was worth leaving paradise. Because you know, for a while there, I wasn't sure I wanted to come back. Vacation never seems long enough.

We got it late, late last night so we went right to bed.
I woke up to Molly's voice. I went in and took her out of her crib and she gave me the BIGGEST hug ever. Then she realized that since mommy was there, daddy is there so she took off running to our bedroom yelling, "Daddy! Daddy! Hi, daddy!". By the time I got in there, she was snuggling her daddy, rubbing his scruff. Like always. Ahhhh....
Maggie and Gavin followed. Big hugs and kisses and more hugs!
Austin is 15. Not sure how many hugs I will get out of him when he gets home.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The Siblings Of Down Syndrome

Last weekend, Mike and I had to honor of attending the regional down syndrome conference. For the most part, it was fabulous. Some sessions were better than others and learned a lot about the "little" things and some about the big things.

But one particular session really touched me.

It was a panel of three young adults that grew up with a sibling that has down syndrome and they told their story. Their view of what life was like growing up with a sibling that had Down Syndrome.

Some of it put a smile on my face. Some of it made me shed a tear. Feelings of anger, fear, joy, hope, and excitement were all felt during that 45 minutes.

It really made me think about Maggie, Gavin, and Austin and what this means to them.

It's not that I haven't thought about it because I have. Especially for Maggie. My worst fear when they were newborns was that the world would make fun of the fact that her twin sister was a....well you know. I vowed to change the thinking of the world.

During the three speeches, I heard the following:


  • Embarrassment: With their inappropriate behavior. The mere fact that they had DS

  • Jealousy: The sib with DS was "Mr. Popular" and he felt like he was in the shadow of his brother

  • Fear: Of having a child of their own with DS. Fear that they would have to care for the child when mom and dad were gone.

  • Resentment: Certain things had to be altered or changed in their life because of the child with DS
  • Frustration: Inability to communicate fully and appropriately

I guess I was in denial. I was denying the fact that Molly's siblings may feel these not so good feelings because of her. I feel that I am more aware of these emotions now.

They are all normal and I really appreciated hearing it first hand from someone who has lived it.

At the end of the day, they all embraced the "challenge" (their words, not mine) of having a sibling with Down Syndrome.

One statement made me cry (because it is so true) "Having Jake opened my eyes to a world that I wouldn't have otherwise known".

Friday, April 9, 2010

Help Get Freddie Home!

Let's talk about Freddie.

Freddie is sittin' in an orphanage in Eastern Europe somewhere. It's all so secretive and I really have no idea where he is but what I do know is where is GOING.

He is going to a loving family; The Shupps. Right here in America. What a great gift this family is giving this boy. Oh, he has no idea what a great life he is going to have.

Everyone that reads my blog knows that I have a passion for DS orphans, right? Well Lyndi adopted a little boy with DS last year that they named Patrick. Lyndi's blog was one of my favorite "post adoption" blogs as she really talked truthfully about life with Patrick.

Patrick has truly thrived in his new home and I have enjoyed watching the journey. Did I mentioned how darling this little boy is? Sooo stinkin' cute!

Now, they have been called to adopt this sweet 15 year old boy who really needs to come home.

They will be set to travel soon and are still in need of funds to complete the adoption.

So, please, if your heart and pocket book allow, donate to their fund.

Heck, skip two lattes this week and give that money to Freddie. He needs it more. Really.

Ready to help? Just click HERE and he will guide you to where you need to go.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

For the love of ((Chinese)) food

It drives my hubs crazy when I use the word, "seriously" but...

Seriously! Have you ever known a three year to have a love for Sesame Chicken and Rice?





Seriously?!

Chinese food is a rare find around here and that is what makes this so crazy!

Mike will stop and get himself some Chinese on the way home if he works late and we have already eaten. Every. So. Often.

Maggie's eyes widen every time she sees the box.



It makes her day to indulge in some good 'ol finger lickin' good Sesame Chicken with white rice!


Seriously, it cracks me up!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Sunday, April 4, 2010

A thought on Easter Sunday



"We don't have to have it all together or keep up with someone else's priorities -- we can find beauty and peace living the life God intended for us. Our life might look a little messier or less "put together" than our neighbors, but we can find fulfillment in being authentic and true to who we really are. Let yourself ...discover and develop the passions God gave you" (Author unknown)


May you all have a blessed Easter♥

Saturday, April 3, 2010

The Dental Visit

This past week, the ladies had their second dental visit of their short little lives. The first one was not so good for Molly. And Maggie did great. This time, however, not so much. God forbid we would have consistency in our lives. They are always throwing me for a loop.

The hygienist said that Molly was first. I figured that would be perfect since she was the one that had the hard time the first time around. Maggie was standing there so proud of being a "big girl" and she was going the "let" Molly go first.

Molly did fabulous! She bucked a little, like she always does but allowed the dentist to count all of her teeth and polish them. She even let her paint fluoride on her teeth!

Like I said, she did get a little bucky screaming, "oweeeee! oweeeee!" which is her interpretation on "No, I don't want to do it!" And well, OK, a little bit of mommy restraints had to be enforced. But in the end, we had accomplished our goal.

Now it was Maggie's turn.


I put Molly down and looked over at my "big girl" whom was smiling and so proud just 5 minutes earlier.

You see, I didn't think about the fact that Maggie just got done watching her sister's drama.

Poor Mag Pie. She was shaking in fear, with silent tears falling down her precious cheeks, and when I went to pick her up, I felt her heart just raising! Oh, I felt so bad. Talk about a toddler anxiety/panic attack!

I couldn't put her through it. I just couldn't! After watching her twin scream "oweee!" and buck the dentist, I knew there was NO WAY Maggie would sit in that chair. She had her teeth clenched so tight, there was no way in !@#$ we were gettin' in.

So we left. We will try it again in a month. She can go with her big brother, Austin, and see how easy it really is.

Note to self: ALWAYS have Maggie go first

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Looking back...


This morning, I came home to find Miss Molly Kate watching Dora in my bedroom.
I asked Molly (like I do all the time, all day long) what she is doing. She responded with,
"Watchin' ma show, mama!"
Note to self: Never underestimate Molly! NEVER! The words are in there--just laying dormant until she is ready to surprise the snot out of me!
The first year of her life, the song Wonder by Natalie Merchant was my theme song. It is such an uplifting song for families with a child with DS. I loved it so much that I created a video of her first year and half to promote her very first Buddy Walk.
As with any song, not all of the lyrics fit but most did.
"People see me
I'm a challenge to your balance
I'm over your heads
How I confound you and astound you
To know I must be one of the wonders
Of god's own creation
And as far as you can see you can offer me
No explanation
O, I believe
Fate smiled and destiny
Laughed as she came to my cradle
Know this child will be able
Laughed as she came to my mother
Know this child will not suffer
Laughed as my body she lifted
Know this child will be gifted
With love, with patience and with faith
She'll make her way"
Three and a half years later, Miss Molly
  • Is definitely able.
  • Has definitely not suffered
  • Is definitely gifted
  • And has DEFINITELY made her way

Love her...