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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Scrappin' 4 a Cure

Oh. My. Gosh! Scrapbooking is the greatest thing ever! And you are now hearing from the newest addict in the scrapbooking world! This weekend I attended Scrappin' 4 a Cure, a scrapbooking event to help raise money for cancer research. It was fun, fun, fun! It is so relaxing and stress free I didn't want it to end. You get to visit with friends, eat great food and work on different projects. This was my first attempt at scrapbooking and I am so sorry I haven't started it before. I almost love it more than going to garage sales! Now that's serious! And to top it off, I won the grand prize drawing! I couldn't hardly believe it! It's this really cool tote bag to carry supplies in. I love it so much I might use it as a purse too!

Some pictures of the scrapping crew...

My two first ever pages! One from Emma's birthday party...

And one from our trip to the CdLS Conference in Chicago last summer...

One of me with my Grand Prize!

My cool new scrappin' bag...

I have to give a big shout out to my hubby for taking care of the kids while I was scrappin. Thanks dear! And also thanks to the Relay for Life Team Our Family Tree for hosting this event. I had a blast!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Thursday 13 ~ Week 2 Edition "B"

What’s the Thursday 13?
The Thursday 13 is a weekly meme with a simple theme: each Thursday you blog a list of 13 things. What kind of things? Any kind! Just come up with a list theme and run with it. One week you may list “13 things on my mind” and maybe the next week you’d list “my top 13 favorite movies”.

Welcome back to Thursday 13. If you missed last week, I started out with the fabulous letter A. This week, we are moving on to ~ you guessed it ~ the letter B. And for those of you that saw the Special Exposure/Wordless Wednesday post from yesterday and are dying to know if I got a new dryer, the answer is yes. If you remember my saga from last fall about clothes hanging to dry for 3 days in my living room, you will know I desparately needed one. Of course we bought one just so the kids could have a huge box to play in. :o) Anyhoo ~ on with the Thursday 13!

1. Bacon ~ Gotta love it!

2. Band Aids ~ Can never have enough of them. They solve a lot of life's little problems!

3. Blanket ~ Shortly before my dad passed away, my mom had ordered him a "Snuggie". You know, the blankets that are like robes or something and you are supposed to be able to do all kinds of things with your arms while staying warm. My favorite part of the commercial is the family at a football game and they are all sporting their Snuggies. ;o) And if you buy one you get one free. Can't beat that! Anyway, my dad passed before the Snuggies arrived. Also mom ended up with 4, not just the two she anticipated. Go figure. And 4 handy dandy "free" booklights. Last week, I brought home two of the Snuggies. One for John (whose room is in the basement) and the other for whoever got to it first. Emma was the lucky one and she now lovingly refers to the blue Snuggie as her "Nuggie".

4. Basagna ~ I happen to be making lasagna for supper tonight. It always reminds me of Tommie when he was little. For the longest time, he always called lasagna "basagna". Coincidently, Abbie just told me a few minutes ago "Mommy, the basagna smells good!" It runs in the family I guess.

5. Blackie ~ the name of one of our cats. Original, I know. The funny thing is, he's orange. Just kidding ~ he really is black.

6. Blonde ~ All of the kids have blonde hair. Out of 5, I figured at least one would have black hair since my hubby's hair is black. Although it is mostly gray now. ;o)

7. Baseball ~ Tis the season. John has already had 3 JV games and Tommie is scheduled for a double header on Saturday.

8. Barefoot ~ A lot of CdLS kiddos prefer to be barefoot and don't like the restricted feeling of shoes. Not Joey. He does spend a lot of time in the house barefoot but he prefers to have his shoes on. He does a lot of great standing and taking steps with his shoes and braces on.

9. Batman and Barbies ~ Two of Emma's favorite toys. That makes them Abbie's favorites too. But she is taking a strong liking to Superman.

10. Baths ~ Joey used to hate them, now he loves them. He's come a long way, baby.

11. Bottles ~ Still washing them even though our youngest is almost 3. Joey drinks his Pediasure from a bottle. It's the only way he will drink the whole amount he needs too.

12. Blogging ~ Love, love, love it. I am grateful for all the friends I've made in Blogland.

13. Bacciferous ~ a random B word. It means "bearing berries". And that concludes the learning portion of today's post.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Special Exposure/Wordless Wednesday ~ Where are my sisters??

Joey is wondering where his sisters went...and how can I knock this big box over?

Here they are! We've got tons of toys but nothing is more fun than our huge box!

For more Special Exposure/Wordless Wednesday action, visit 5 Minutes for Special Needs, 5 Minutes for Mom, and Mom Dot.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Thursday 13 ~ Week 1 Edition "A"

What’s the Thursday 13?
The Thursday 13 is a weekly meme with a simple theme: each Thursday you blog a list of 13 things. What kind of things? Any kind! Just come up with a list theme and run with it. One week you may list “13 things on my mind” and maybe the next week you’d list “my top 13 favorite movies”.

I think this meme looks like a lot of fun. My friend Alisha over at Izzy 'n Emmy has been doing her Thursday 13's alphabetically and is up to the letter K. Check her out when you get a chance. After following hers for a few weeks, I thought I would give it a shot. Here goes...

1. Alphabet ~ As I am typing this, Emma is asking me how to spell everyone's names and writing them down. This makes it hard to concentrate! lol

2. Adhesive ~ This week John found some Gorilla Glue in the glove box of one of the cars and proceeded to glue a quarter to the dash while I was in the store. Yeah, it won't come off. Lesson learned ~ never leave kids in the car unattended (no matter how old they get!)

3. Amazed ~ Every day I am amazed at Joey's strength and determination.

4. Action ~ There is always a massive amount of action in our house.

5. Apples ~ I prefer green over red.

6. Arithmatic ~ Math was always my least favorite subject in school.

7. Ariel ~ One of the princesses the girls love so much.

8. Attitude ~ Where does a 4 year old girl get the attitude of a 15 year old?

9. Angels ~ They are everywhere.

10. Acceptance ~ is not always easy.

11. Anxious ~ How I feel about the future.

12. Armpits ~ My armpits itch if I wear the wrong brand of deodorant. (Too personal??) lol

13. Albumin ~ member of a class of water-soluble, heat-coagulating proteins. Albumins are widely distributed in plant and animal tissues. (Random A word from the dictionary. You see ~ this is a learning adventure too!!) lol

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Very special candy wrapper....

March is Developmental Disability Awareness Month. The terrific ladies at Joey's therapy facility, Wiggles & Giggles, made these awesome candy wrappers to pass out as parent treats. Of course, I already ate the candy (mine was Reese's Peanut Butter Cups - yum, yum!!) but I wanted to share a picture of the wrapper with you. Thanks so much girls ~ way to promote awareness!

To check out Wiggles & Giggles (and to find Joey's picture with his speech therapist!) click here.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Yes, it's a Barbie Mustang...

Emma turned 4 on Saturday. We had a family party for her at my mom's house. She had a fantastic time! If you can't tell, she loves the princesses so that was her "theme". Abbie had a great time too...of course everything that Emma gets she is sure it's hers also. So Emma will have to be a super sharer of her new stuff. Shawn and I splurged a little for her birthday and got her a Barbie Mustang that they can drive around. It is so cute and she loves driving it. It was 80 degrees here today so she had fun tearing up the neighborhood. For some reason Abbie chose not to ride with her today and ran along side her instead. She thought it was a big hoot. Enjoy the pics!

Emma's invitation (I made them with a little help from my friend Natalie...thanks girl!!)

Princess balloons...

Princess cake (made by Grandma Jerry...it was yummy!)


Time for a test drive!

Watch out for that car!

Joey and my cutie pie niece Aubree watching the action from the sidelines...

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Birthdays, balloons and dancing...Oh My!

Boy did we have a busy weekend! We attended our first ever Sweet 16 party on Saturday night. I used to babysit a little girl named Nikki starting when she was about a year old. Her sister Ashley was 5 at the time and they have had a special place in our lives ever since. Now, Nikki turned 16 and Ashley is 21! I can hardly believe it! As you can see from the pictures, they are beautiful young ladies. We had a lot of fun! On Sunday, Tommie's club basketball team played in the Hoops Mania tournament and got 1st place. Yay for the Mavericks! Oops ~ I forgot! Sunday was also my wonderful hubby's birthday. Happy belated birthday Shawn! And we've got Emma's 4th birthday coming up on Saturday. Enjoy the slide show!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Joey, a sweater vest and Velma

Joey and Emma had spring pictures at school today. I dressed Joey in his cute little sweater vest and Emma in a pretty dress. Never mind that my oldest John thought Joey's sweater vest looked girly ~ I happen to think it's adorable. Unfortunately Emma shed her dress before I could get her picture. She always takes her clothes off as soon as she gets home from school and wants shorts and a t-shirt on no matter what the weather is like outside. Anyway, the batteries in my camera are dead so I grabbed the video camera and caught Joey on the couch having a high time with Velma. I'm surprised he sat still this long ~ for him it's a record cause he sat there playing a lot longer than the video actually is. Shaggy better watch out cause Mr. Joe is in the house!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

You call this comfortable???

This is how I found Abbie taking a nap the other day. If you can see it, that is a blue push pop sucker in her right hand. I'm not sure where her other sock and shoe went. Oh well ~ when you're tired you're tired I guess! :o)

For more Wordless Wednesday/Special Exposure action, check out 5 Minutes for Special Needs, 5 Minutes for Mom, and Mom Dot.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Happy Retirement Mom!

On Friday, the girls and I attended a retirement party for my mom. She retired from her current job as Boone County Zoning Administrater a few weeks ago and Thursday was her last day. It was a very nice open house and lots of people came to give her their best. It was a hard day for her too as she has worked most of her life, previously spending 30+ years working for the ASCS office in Albion. As you can see, the girls spent about 5 minutes keeping busy with some coloring and the rest of the time running the hall. They certainly livened up the joint!

March is Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month. For more information, please visit the Multiple Sclerosis Association.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

National Rare Disease Day....

Saturday, February 28 was National Rare Disease Day. Even though CdLS is not considered a disease, National Rare Disease Day is used to recognize all rare diseases and/or syndromes that children and adults around the world are diagnosed with and living with every day. I have met many special families that have children affected by many different diseases or syndromes that I have never even heard of. Their struggles have touched my heart and I wish the best for their children and their search for cures. The following is something I wrote and submitted to Marie at the CdLS Foundation to share with the National Organization for Rare Disorders in observance of this day.

Our son Joey was born in 2004 with a rare genetic condition called Cornelia de Lange Syndrome, commonly referred to as CdLS. CdLS is a congenital syndrome, meaning it is present from birth. The exact incidence in unclear, but CdLS is thought to occur in approximately 1 in 10,000 live births. Common characteristics include: low birth weight, slow growth, small stature, and small head size. Typical facial features include thin eyebrows (which frequently meet midline), long eyelashes, a short upturned nose, and thin downturned lips. Personally, they are among the most beautiful children I have ever seen. Medical conditions include but are not limited to gastroesophageal reflux, seizures, feeding difficulties, eye problems, hearing loss, behavioral issues and developmental delays.

Unlike some other conditions or syndromes, we had no idea there was anything wrong with Joey until our doctor approached us the day after he was born. And from that day on, our lives changed dramatically. Therapy sessions, doctor visits and special education serevices have become our lives ~ our normal. Although Joey has CdLS, we are fortunate that he does not have a lot of the medical issues that can and do go along with it. Joey attends preschool 4 days a week, physical and occupational therapy twice a week and also speech therapy twice a week. He participates in equine (horseback riding) therapy once a week from May through October. Joey has two older brothers and has been to many baseball, football and basketball games. He also has two younger sisters that he loves to torment. We get an immense amount of information and support from the CdLS Foundation and do what we can to raise awareness about CdLS. We traveled to Chicago last summer to attend our first CdLS National Conference. It was so great to meet other families with children who also have CdLS. It was definately a life changing experience.

The last 5 years have been quite a journey. We have had to learn to watch carefully for the many signs we have encountered on the road we are now traveling. We have had to obey many detour, yield and caution signs, as well as watch for forks in the road, road blocks and dangerous curves. But you know what? We wouldn't change a thing. There have been so many wonderful people enter our lives because of Joey. People we probably otherwise would not have met. And now everyone that helps Joey is such a big part of our lives we don't know what we would do without them. Joey has taught us many things ~ patience, understanding and the true meaning of unconditional love. So even though we never know what a day will bring, we take one day at a time, hour by hour, minute by minute. And marvel at all the great things Joey is learning how to do.

For more information, please check out National Organization for Rare Disorders.

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