I am growing up so fast!

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Amanda's age

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For Amanda

Our three T21 princesses

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Blog Award

Jennifer at Elliot's Nest has awarded me the Premios Dardos blog award. This award acknowledges the values that every blogger shows in his or her effort to transmit cultural, ethical, literary, and personal values every day.

Step 1: respond and rework -- answer the questions on your own blog, replace one question that you dislike with a question of your own invention, add one more question of your own.

Step 2: tag - eight other bloggers to do the same.

1) What are you wearing right now? Grey shorts, black tank, no shoes. It is warm here again.

2) What is your biggest fear? Losing one of my children to illness, especially after so many have been ill the past two weeks.

3) What was the name of your favorite pet? Gigi, a beautiful black cat who thought he was a dog.

4) Who is the last person you hugged? Amanda, when she went down for her nap.

5) What websites to you visit when you go online? Blogger, Care2 News, Mercola.com, Yahoo, Gymboree-Children's Place-Pumpkin Patch.

6) What was the last item you bought? Burt's Bees lip balm.

7) If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go? Back to Ukraine and Estonia.

8) If you could go to the Oscars, who would you want to sit next to? Clint Eastwood, I think he may actually talk to me.

9) Has a celebrity's hair cut ever influenced your own hairstyle? Once, Farrah Fawcett, in HS.

10)What is/was your favorite thing about being pregnant? Least favorite? Feeling my babies move, having to go to the bathroom all the time.

11) What was the last movie you watched? Dante's Peak.

12) What is the luckiest thing that ever happened to you? Wow, there are so many, but I would say winning a dental makeover, my teeth were a mess.

13) If you had a whole day to yourself with no work, commitments or interruptions what would you do? --Read a good book, catch up on emails, watch Gone with the Wind without the family complaining about it.

14) Is there a major goal you have that you haven't yet achieved? Completing college.

15) Drinks are on the house!! Ha ha, water! I do not drink soda or alcohol.

16) What is something that those in blogland might not know about you? I have been in a movie and a few local commercials. Been in them, not starred, LOL.

What is the best vacation you ever went on? Going to New Orleans on a road trip with my three youngest and hubby Mind you, I was having surgery, but I enjoyed driving all the way to LA from AZ.

I tag:

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Amanda is a tough cookie

Meghan and Kara were hit hard with a flu, and so far Amanda has avoided getting it, I am so grateful for that, two whining and miserable girls was enough for me. On top of the girls being sick, Tom and I were too.

She is doing well, her newest BIG thing is being able to climb up on furniture. She can get on everything now, go Amanda! She has been a trooper through her families flu bug, quietly sitting and playing. You can tell she is wondering why her sisters are not their usual selves.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Just thinking

Her hair grows so fast! I just trimmed it and it is in her face again. She adores playing outside, we have to pick her up to get her back in the house with us. She also loves to play in the dirt, and is getting pretty filthy. She often has black grime encircling her mouth.
Therefore, I am grateful she is tolerating baths better, no more abject terror, just some nervous singing. She does not having her hair washed either, she and Meghan both hate that.

She has had two sessions with the feeding specialist-OT. I think they want too much too soon from Amanda, I am happy with slow but steady progress, as professionals, they like measurable gains. I think we are going to have to agree to disagree with this one. She is bigger and taller, but still thin, maybe her bio mama was thin, her new mama is not, I definitely have some weight to lose.

We did a speech evaluation for her yesterday, truly could not do your typical exam with her, there was no pointing to pictures or responding verbally to anything. It was more of a question and answer session, but Amanda will begin speech too, so that is a huge relief for us, hopefully we can address her delays.

I have to be honest though, with all of these people looking at what my girls can do and telling me how to help them, I am feeling harried with all the demands placed on me for each girl. They all mean well and they are all kind and professional people, but it leaves me feeling inadequate and frazzled. “Feed her this way, hold her that way, do this when you play, use cards to help her communicate, use sign language, do you have this special spoon, do you use this book, that tool, this DVD?”

I remember going through something similar when Meghan had early intervention and joked then that she had 4 people raising her with me, her dad, the PT, OT and ST. While I joked, it felt extremely invasive. There has to be a fine line between helping your child to reach their maximum potential and interfering with their exploration and learning processes, how do children truly learn, and do we even know the best way to help them? If you read the post I deleted about schools, you will understand that I do not believe educators truly know how to teach children. They follow theories that in practice fall very short.

What has been interesting for me the rapidity that both Kara and Amanda have learned since coming home? Previously I followed along with the premise that without early intervention, a child with Down syndrome would not have the tools to learn, that perhaps their brains would fail to form the correct pathways for future knowledge without therapy. Yet both our littlest girls are learning what Meghan did, playing catch up. Yes, they are very delayed, Meghan is too, a full 4 years behind in many developmental milestones of a typical child, and she had early intervention. It begs the question, are the therapists and their ideas of what therapy should be failing the children? I know that I worked very diligently with Meghan, incorporating each task into daily living, we did our therapy homework on schedule with the exception of the year I fought breast cancer. I was not super cancer mom, you read about them, they cook, clean, and do everything they did before cancer diagnosis, surgery, and chemo despite their great fatigue. I had friends who did the same, most of them lost to cancer…I was so tired I could not stay awake for longer than an hour at a time. Would Meghan be further along without that break? I doubt it; she seems to learn at a specific pace regardless of what we try with her.

It was important to me to get both Amanda and Kara therapy as soon as I could and now I am thinking I should have waited a year to begin, they had enough to learn and adjust to already. Did I make a mistake? I think I did.

Sunday, February 1, 2009


I think this is a case of seeing her sisters walk and wanting to join them, Amanda is amazing us in the rapidity of her developmental progress, she is one determined little girl and we are so proud of her! She has a ways to go, but every new step counts!

My three little girls

My three little girls
Finally got all three to smile at once