Saturday, March 30, 2013

A Great Little Mommy!

The last play of the day involved Addie showing off her mothering skills.

We try not to take a thing for granted, especially with Monkus.
As we approached the swings, Addie held up her baby to me, wanting me to put her baby in the swing.
Once I got her baby settled, my sweet girl pushed her baby for what seemed like hours!

We were so proud of her!

A momentary time out to view her boo boo.

When the baby was all done swinging, Addie stopped to pose with her before we left the park.

I am thankful for each moment of progress and I am thankful for all the moments of joy I see on her little face!

March 17, 2013

Time Out Number Two

We all had a great time at the park despite Addie's two separate mini meltdowns.
Addie loved trying out the bigger slides, it just took a bit of prompting!

The second time out of the day lasted a little longer than the first.

Julien took it upon himself to have a moment of creative innovation and found a new use for the seat belt mechanism on the swing.

After Addie's time out, she became upset and needed a hug and a few minutes of reassurance.

Julien busied himself with dragon slaying until Addie was back to her happy little self.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

An "Addie Friendly" Play set!

I was absolutely thrilled that there was a play set that was Addie friendly!
It was small enough where one of us could stay on the ground behind Addie while she was going up the stairs.
That is HUGE in our world!

Although Addie has made amazing progress with stairs, it is still a work in progress.
I just love to see how amazing she is and the progress she has made!

Although Julien offered to babysit while Addie went up the stairs, Addie would hear nothing of it.
Check out the balancing skills as she made sure her baby made it safely to the platform.

If she was going down the slide, so was baby.

The other really awesome part of this play set is that once Addie made it up the stairs and over to the slide, we didn't have to worry about her falling backwards!
We truly were at ease watching her play.
It wasn't long though before she wanted to be near the other children and ventured away from this play set.

It was fantastic - while it lasted.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

"I'm MAD!"

The Little Monkus just amazes us.

There were a couple times when Julien failed to comply with Addie's demands wishes.
One in particular was when Julien bounded up the climber towards the entrance to the slide, leaving Monkus behind.
I tried redirecting Addie to the stairs, telling her that I would help her to the top and Julien would be there waiting on her, but that made her even more upset.
Instead, she walked away from me to an open area of the playground, sat down and said,
"I'm MAD!".

We were stunned!
Not only were we stunned that Addie put herself in time out, but we were also stunned that she told us she was mad!!!!!
That was most definitely a first.

I looked at Addie and told her that it was ok that she was mad, and she was a very smart girl to take a time out until she calmed down.
I was impressed!

She sat calmly for a few minutes, then got up on her own and started playing again.

Check out the amazing parenting luck I have...

Her self-administered time out occurred one other time.
That time, Addie's baby took the brunt of her emotions.
It was a rather interesting experience.

Hungry Hungry Hippo

There was no way that Julien was going to even think about doing anything at the park without Addie right beside him.
She had her meltdown moments several times throughout the afternoon, but all was calm and quiet as long as Julien complied with the Monkey's every wish.

When she saw him sitting on the hippo, she made her way over and 

immediately demanded his attention.

She is rotten.

Sunday, March 24, 2013


My family lost a very beloved furry member of our family today.

This little rat was rescued at the lake by my aunt, bottle fed by my aunt and members of her staff each day until she was big enough to move to her new home - at my Mother's house.
My Mother had resisted the thought of getting a new dog after the death of her last dog in 1999 and when this little rat was brought into her home,
it wasn't just my Mother who fell in love with her.
It was the entire family and every friend, family member, home health care provider and service tech who walked through her doors.  

Carli was - the saving grace - that we needed for Mom - to encourage her to get well after her heart surgery, and then again after taking up residency at UAB last August.

The details are rather minimal.
Carli and Mom were at home Friday night when Carli had a seizure.
Carli was immediately taken for medical care.
There was no trace of any toxins or disease.
Despite the medications through a continuous IV, and despite Dr. Fuller taking Carli home with him to watch  throughout the night Saturday night, there was no saving her.

The seizures were continuous and could not be stopped and she - thankfully - passed in her sleep early this morning.

The entire family gathered for graveside services this afternoon, and Carli was laid to rest in a casket (hand built by a friend), and surrounded by her favorite toys.
It brings peace to my heart to know how very much she is loved.

Thursday, March 21, 2013


Post Traumatic Stress Monkus

After she got over the initial trauma of the ice being placed on her boo-boo, she took the "Man Up" approach 

and was ready to head out and start our day.

We took a field trip to a "new to us" park.
This is now officially one of our favorite parks.
It has so many different Monkus-friendly activities and we will definitely be returning soon.

Monkus began play time on the swings 

and of course, Julien was there to assist at every activity.

Addie sat back and enjoyed a bit of people watching.

while Julien did all the work.

March 17, 2013

3000 more monotonous park pictures to come...

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


Last month Thomas had to go to the vet to get his teeth cleaned. 
He did very well and has been the sweetest kitty ever since his return home; we are assuming it is  because he is just so darn happy that we didn't leave him at the vet.

This month, it was Alley's turn to go and have her teeth cleaned.
When Julien, Addie and I went to pick her up, she did not appear overly thrilled with us.
She refused to say anything the entire ride home.

Addie - was on complete sensory overload - due to the number of dogs, of all sizes, going in and out of the office.
The dog that started it all - a Great Dane - Addie referred to as "Horsey".
Just about every dog wanted to say hello to Addie, and with each new dog that came in her direction, her anxiety grew.
By the time we left the vet, Addie needed a nap and I needed a drink with a high alcohol content.
Julien was satisfied with music therapy.

Next time, we will avoid routine kitty maintenance during Spring Break, thus avoiding yet one more drama filled encounter.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

On My Watch

Every child gets boo-boo's... 
More accidents happen in the home...
 It's a right of passage... 

 Whatever, whatever.

 I know all these things. 
I do have a fourteen-year-old who is bigger than I am that has not only taught me a few things about parenting, but who has also taught me how resilient children are. 
So, my word vomit below has everything to do with the fact that the Little Monkey got hurt on my watch, as opposed to a "my poor baby got a boo-boo spiel". 

 I almost feel sorry for new caregivers we encounter, because I throw a ton of information at them - and harp on safety, safety, safety. 
 However, in the confines of our home, I catch myself - from time to time - allowing the Little Monkey a little more freedom, (such as listening to music in her room while I fold clothes in the laundry room).
I want her to have some semblance of independence, but days like this are a bleak reminder of the reason I am always on guard.

Monkus is great at getting boo-boo's, but it is the ones directly related to her developmental delays


the ones that happen on my watch
that get me.

TMI...and you have been warned.

We were rushing to get ready for the day, when I took Monkus and helped her onto the potty.
Chris was a few feet away, as was Julien.
I had to run over to the other bathroom and in the 60 seconds that I was gone, Monkus learned she couldn't fly.

The best we can figure out is that Monkey must have tried to get down from the potty all by herself and completely forgot that she had to step down.
Although she is making progress, she still requires one on one assistance.

AND, she always tells me when she is "all done", so I cannot figure out what was different this time.

We think that she just went to take a step and fell face forward because when Chris heard the noise, he looked and saw her laying face down on the tile.

She did not cry.

I was right behind him and her little eye was already swelling like crazy.
It wasn't until Chris told Monkus that he was going to get an ice pack, did she start to cry.

The picture so does not do it justice.

After the round of ice therapy, we went ahead with our plans for the day.
I gave Monkus pain meds when she started to show signs of discomfort, but in all, she had a great day.
She is amazing and so tough!

The main potty area for Monkey is set up to take every safety precaution into consideration.
We have the perfect sized potty rails with an attached step stool,

and potty seat.

The only thing is that  Monkey has been doing so well, that we decided to remove one handrail about a year back in order to force her to gain a little more independence instead of relying on using two handrails.
With me always by her side, it has been working quite well, and without incident...
until the one time that I thought my bladder was going to burst and I just couldn't wait a minute for Monkus to finish her turn.

By bedtime, her eye had turned a painful shade of purple.
Of course it could have been so much worse, but I feel so bad for her.
Addie started Spring Break Camp today and she had a great day!
I don't think she even thinks about her boo-boo throughout the day, but I do.