Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Sixteen-month vision screening

Addie had her follow up today with Dr. Metz. In the whole scheme of things, we received good news. Addie did great during the exam and didn't fuss at all! Dr. Metz explained that all babies have some degree of farsightedness, but Addie has a moderate degree of farsightedness. Basically what this means is we have added another item to our "wait and see world". Please don't get me wrong, the last time we saw Dr. Metz we were not certain that Addie would even be able to see, so this really is great news. I just don't want any additional limitations put on Addie. We have to watch her for a few different things and just pray that she outgrows this. She has been a bit upset because of her disorientation with her eyes being blurry after being dilated, but this should pass within 48 hours. I thank God that Addie can see and for those amazing blue eyes! God will continue to be with us and we will follow HIS path.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008


I have an "Addie folder" that I have saved on my email account. Each time I receive an email with a comment, compliment or just simply telling me that Addie has brightened your day, I archive the email. From time to time, I go back and read the comments. I want you each to know that your words do not go unnoticed and that I am forever grateful for the time you take to tell me how Addie is impacting your lives. I don't think you realize just how much your kind words mean to me!

There's no place like home...

I just keep clicking my ruby slippers, but nothing seems to be happening.
We are officially homeless, but grateful to have a temporary house to live in. Julien and Chris seem to be adjusting well. They have been fishing and boating everyday and for whatever reason, the mosquitos don't seem to bother them like they do Addie and me! Addie took her first (and second) ride in the boat yesterday. We all got up early and enjoyed the ride and the calm water. On our first outing, Addie just sat back and took it all in. We went out again close to sunset and halfway through, Addie just couldn't take it anymore and she drifted off to sleep. She is trying to adjust to our new surroundings, but throughout the day she kept saying, "bye-bye" was restless and just wanted to be held. I think things will be better this week since she is back in school and her day will be somewhat normal.
Everything has fallen right into place for our new house. The appraisal, inspection and all the nit-picky items are complete. Now we just sit back and wait for closing on the 4th. I talked to the current owner this morning and it is possible we could get in the house a day early! That would be GREAT!
I hope to find the time (and computer access) to post some pictures soon.
Hope everyone enjoyed their long Memorial Day weekend!

Thanks Jenn W. for posting this for me!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Oh so quiet

Chris and the movers just left with the first load of furniture. They're on the way to storage and then back again to finish up. Julien is at school for the last day of his third grade year. I gave him a big hug this morning and told him that I just couldn't believe how fast he was growing up! Addie will be at school all day today, we have to be out of the house tomorrow, so I just don't have time to take the afternoon off for therapy. As the moving truck left the driveway, it all hit me. This has been our HOME for the last three years. This was Addie's first home and the home in which Julien grew so quickly into a little man. This is a little tougher than I thought it would be. I'm looking forward to our new beginning, but it's hard to leave these memories behind. The first night in this house, we camped out in the master bedroom floor and this is what we will be doing tonight. I'll leave the marshmallows out for the kids (and me too!). Not a bad way to say good-bye. It's too quiet in here...I can't wait for the kids to come home tonight.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Don't forget!

May 31st is almost here! If you haven't voted for your favorite in The Birmingham Parent photo contest, please do so!

A very busy time

I am a little worried about these next two weeks while we are "homeless". Please keep us in your prayers. I worry because this is a major change for Addie. We will be going to the lake house on Friday and will have two weeks before we move to the new house. That is two big moves in two weeks. I know this is the best decision for all of us and I pray for a smooth transition for Addie!

Keep checking back in for updates. Even if I have to resort to WiFi at Starbucks, I'll give updates!

Goosebumps and another answered prayer

God is amazing! 
 I see HIS work in every aspect of my life and this story is one more testament to HIS work!

This is a long story, but I hope you will find it is worth the read:

As many of you know, our house has been on the market for thirteen-months.
For thirteen-months I have been praying that we would sell our house before Addie became mobile. 
Addie started crawling on Saturday and on Monday, we sold our house! 
 I know that God hears my prayers, but this was just amazing! 
 HE heard my ceaseless prayers as I begged HIM to show me the way and guide me and help me to determine what was best for my children.

As soon as we got the phone call from our agent, I started praying because after I checked the MLS I knew there wasn't a house out there that we cared to have. 
 I asked God to guide me and show me where we should be, to help me follow HIS path. 
 On the way to baseball practice, I asked Chris if we could drive through the same neighborhood where we built a house last year.
We really love this neighborhood and have been hoping for a house to come on the market. 
 The house we built last year just didn't work out and I realized it was because it wasn't meant for us to be in that house. 
 Three months after Addie was born, Chris and I started looking at plans to build a house. 
 We thought we needed a house that would accommodate a child with physical and severe mental delays, so we built one with those specifications in mind. 
We realize now, that God was leading us in another direction. 

 So, here we are feeling a bit unnerved because we don't know what to do. 
 As we were driving through this neighborhood, I spotted a FSBO sign in a yard of a house that is completely unlike any house that we have looked at before. 
 As soon as Chris saw it, he told me to call. 
 I spoke to the owner and she invited us to stop by. 
 Chris took us to the baseball field and went back to look at the house. 
 Over an hour later, he came back to the field and started telling me all the things about this house that would fit us perfectly and that this house "feels like home". 
 In the last thirteen-months, there has only been one other house that we could say that about and it sold months ago! 

 We made an appointment to see the house again the next day after therapy. 
 We went back and spent a good deal of time going through the house and then decided to get Julien and bring him back to look. 
 Julien is by far the toughest critic of a house. 
 He just about drove us mad in the search for a house! 
 Julien loved this house and we decided to bring our agent back the next morning to make an offer. 
 We found out from the owner's that their house went on the market the same day that Addie started to crawl. 
I just feel that God made this house available for us in answer to my prayers! 
 We had a long 48-hour wait for a definite decision, so we took that time to continue our search. 
 We looked at five houses on Thursday night in the pouring rain - that was fun... 
 We found one house that we have reserved as a back up just in case our first choice doesn't work out. 
 Our back up house is in Riverwoods and is very pretty, not entirely functional for us, but when it comes down to being looks quite nice!

I have been waiting for two weeks to post this part...

We closed on our house tonight!
The house that I am so certain God led us to is not available until June 9th. 
 We are officially homeless! 
My aunt has graciously offered to let us stay at the lake house until the 9th. A great little mini vacation in the midst of all the stress! 
 I know God has led us to this house and I feel certain this is where we should be. 
There are great things about the new house and what sealed the deal for me was the moment I put Addie down to talk to the owner of the house, she immediately crawled over to the window and was looking out at Julien in the yard. It all just feels right.

We feel this is our new start. 
 Our new start so that we can leave the past behind and focus on continuing to find the good in all that we have and all that we are. 
 God has been so gracious and giving to us and as each day passes, I realize more and more how lucky I am. I never would have seen this world in this light had it not been for the events that reshaped our lives on December 31, 2006. 
 This move is our new beginning and I am so excited!

To top all this off, we sold our house to some amazingly good people! 
They have graciously agreed to keep an eye out for Max and to call if he comes home (they're cat lovers too!). 
 I keep praying that I will have closure - one way or the other.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

An hour of pure joy!

Therapy today was filled with lots of joy and laughter! Addie, Trenton and Tucker were amazing today! They are all three mobile, but in different ways. They all three are speaking and meeting milestones that some people thought were unreachable! LOOK at our beautiful children! They bring such joy to us and the people who encounter them each day. I am so thankful for the friendship that I have formed with Dewana and Christy and couldn't imagine my life without their amazing children! They are growing and learning each and every day and we beg of you for your continued support and prayers!

18-17 and ready for the play-offs!

Our boys did GREAT tonight and are on the way to the play-offs Thursday night! Woo-hoo!!!!

Addie and Mary Beth

Addie was as sweet as ever tonight! She was all comfy cozy in Mary Beth's arms and was all about getting to go over to the next field to watch the big boys play! Mary Beth enjoyed spending time with Addie and even said that Addie was the "Lucky Charm" that enabled her son's team to win tonight. When they initially walked over to the field, the score was tied 4-4. Their team came back to win 6-4, all due to Addie's magical powers!

"A" Honor Roll - again!

Julien made straight "A's" again! I am so incredibly proud of him! This is a great way to end an amazing school year. I can only hope and pray that next year goes as well and that we are blessed with another teacher as wonderful as Ms. Hood - great teachers are few and far between and we just felt like we hit the jackpot this year!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Mess maker!

I allowed Addie to take full control of all the plastic cups in the kitchen cabinet. Apparently, she thought her organizational skills were much better than mine...

Going where no baby has ever gone before!

Addie was enjoying afternoon snack and making a complete mess in the process. She managed to mysteriously misplace her cheerios and toy on the floor, so I got her out of her highchair and put her on the floor so she could retrieve her toy. As soon as she got on the floor, she grabbed her toy, started "cleaning up her mess" and was crawling all underneath the table and her highchair! I am so proud of her; she is doing so well!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Happy Birthday Kelly!

We attended Kelly's 30th Birthday Party tonight! We enjoyed the time with our friends, but had to scoot out early to get Addie home and ready for bed...she's just not a night owl!
Happy Birthday Kelly and welcome to the 30's!


In order to encourage Addie to crawl, I bribed her with a balloon. She was a bit skeptical at first, but just couldn't resist! She did great showing off for our friends tonight!

Congratulations Corbin!

We attended my cousin, Corbin's graduation and birthday party today! It was great to get a chance to spend time catching up with our family! Addie was a big fan of the caterer and spent most of the party snacking...we're not giving Dr. Dudgeon ANY reason to order lab work before July!
Congratulations Corbin, we are so proud of you and wouldn't have missed this party!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Kim is amazing!

I knew Kim would produce amazing results from our miserable photo shoot! I can't stress enough how bad this session was, but yet the pictures are beautiful as always!

Thanks again Kim for ALL you do!

Friday, May 16, 2008

My beautiful Addie - fifteen-month pictures!

Julien - wow he's growing up fast!

Handsome as ever!

Addie and Mommy and "just us" :)

I was so miserable this day and it took all I had to even be at the gardens walking around. I refused to reschedule the pictures and wouldn't have missed the opportunity to have my photo taken with Addie and Julien (and Chris too). I look rough, but she looks just beautiful!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Julien and Addie

Addie and her Daddy

Re-check and a boo-boo

We saw Dr. Dudgeon this afternoon for a re-check on Addie's weight and ears. Her ears are clear - woo hoo - and Chunkus Chunkus is now up to 19 pounds 3 ounces! So, Dr. Dudgeon readily agreed that we could wait until the MRI in July to do additional blood tests. GREAT news! Addie got one shot today and will have to go back in two weeks for another (and then two weeks for another, etc...for a total of four shots over the next eight weeks).
I couldn't wait to go in and see Dr. Dudgeon today and tell him the amazing news about Addie crawling. When I told him, he seemed a bit surprised but thought I was maybe referring to commando crawling. After I reassured him (more than once) that she was actually crawling, he was ecstatic! He told me that I just made his whole year! I know that a lot of medical professionals never thought Addie would crawl, much less speak or sign and I think it was a really nice surprise! Sometimes I wonder if physicians justify actions with a scientific explanation and if they battle with science vs God. I really hope it doesn't become a gray issue for them. He told me that seeing a miracle such as Addie is very humbling to him. I pray that God continues to give Dr. Dudgeon the knowledge to accurately and compassionately care for Addie.


The May 31st deadline for The Birmingham Parent Magazine photo contest is quickly approaching! If you haven't voted yet, please do! Even if you don't feel Addie is the best contestant, vote anyway! There are three other special needs children who want the chance to win! See the information in the upper right hand corner of the blog for more information on how to VOTE!

Look at it this way, which is easier, deciding on a presidential candidate or voting for a beautiful child in a photo contest? Yep, I thought so...

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Hard to find the words to describe it

I got the CD of Addie's fifteen-month photo shoot in the mail today from Kim. I am trying desperately to keep Addie occupied long enough for me to browse through really quickly and this is the picture that made my heart just stop. I don't know what it is about this picture, but I'm fighting back tears. Here is this beautiful, special person who I helped to create. She is simply amazing.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Great win 20-8!

The boys did a great job tonight, there's not a lot to complain about with a 12 point lead! The other team did a great job too and had some great hitters!


Addie is following in Julien's footsteps! This was taken at school; Addie's teachers said she had the best time!

Trying to pull up!

Ms. Racquel works extra hard trying to get Addie to pull up! She will get it soon!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day!

This time the celebration was at Jim N Nicks and was for GaGa (my Mom). I swear I think I've gained ten pounds since yesterday! We had a great time and enjoyed spending time with family.

Julien bought me the best gift for Mother's Day and made me breakfast this morning! I am the most blessed Mom in the world!

Thank you...

Thank you for the extra prayers over the last few days. Chris and I feel like we have things moving in the right direction and will be able to fill everyone in on the news soon.

Absolutely beautiful!

We attended a very special wedding tonight! I will have to say that Ashley was the most beautiful bride that I have ever seen! We were so blessed to be part of this event! Congratulations Ashley and Josh!
Julien opted out of the wedding, which is completely understandable. Addie did very well during the ceremony...a little bribery from a bag of mini marshmallows seemed to help her demeanor along! During the reception, Addie was all smiles and was eager to test out the bride and the groom's cake. Life was good until it was time to go home...she sobbed ALL the way home, she has got to become better friends with that car seat!


As you all know, Addie gets very upset when other people hold her. At the wedding tonight, she decided to be Miss Social and was more than happy to let Julia hold her and then Holly and then she decided she was going to ham it up for anybody willing to talk to her!

The Cheesecake Factory

Today was Addie's first trip to The Cheesecake Factory. We took Granny (Chris' Mom) to lunch for Mother's Day. Addie had a great time and thought the cheesecake was the best part of the whole trip! Mmm!