Wednesday, February 24, 2010

A fine line

Just like there's a fine line between cutting her bangs short enough that I won't have to do it again anytime soon and just plain cutting them too short ...
There's a fine line in blogging as well.

I was talking to my brother yesterday and he commented that I don't blog as often as I used to.

He said he missed my posts because he was really encouraged to hear me write about my walk with the Lord.

And I have to admit, I had, um, noticed that my posts haven't had the spiritual depth that they used to. So I took some time yesterday to reflect on that.

When I was pregnant and Emma was first born, it was a VERY difficult time in my life, but it was also a time of HUGE emotional and spiritual growth. My prayer life was vibrant, my time in the Word was like water to my soul. I would read a chapter ANYWHERE in the Bible and find that it brought me comfort or encouragement. And I blogged about it.

But then once life settled back into "new normal," I noticed something happening in my relationship with the Lord. I would read the Word and something would strike home with me and instead of pondering it and working to apply it to my own life, I would instantly think about how to blog about it.

And many have shared with me that some of those posts were a blessing to them, so I'm not saying that blogging about my daily devotionals was a bad thing.

But I started to realize that I had entered a season where the blogging about my walk with the Lord had, in a weird way, over-taken my actual walk.

So for the last couple of months, I haven't felt like I "had permission" from the Lord to blog about some of the things he was working on in me because I needed to let them rattle around in my own life for awhile.

And that was good.

But talking to my brother made me realize that perhaps I had fallen into yet another problem. My blogging had been holding me accountable to actually DOING those devotionals! And now ... well ... I'm not in the Word NEARLY as much as I used to be.

So.

I'm NOT a pastor. I'm NOT a Bible scholar. I HAVEN'T read the whole book cover-to-cover.

But I think I might start occassionally reflecting about my Bible times out here again. It's as good a journal as any, right? :)

No worries. I won't stop posting pictures of cute kids:






Just might go back to throwing some Bible verses up here now and again and see what comes of it. Is that ok? :)

Ready? :)

Here's one that struck me this week:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Phil 3:12 - Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ took hold of me.


I'm in a season right now where the adrenaline has worn off. When you're in the valley, it's easy to find spiritual growth, and on a mountain top it's easy to praise His name.


But right now I'm just sort of doing life. It's busy and hectic and fun and exhausting. Just life.


And the terrible temptation comes from the fact that if I look behind me, a season of great spiritual growth isn't so far back there that it's disappeared over the horizon. I COULD think back over the last year and sort of rest in the growth I've already had.


But I have NOT "already been made perfect"


And if I fail to "press on," if I fail to keep working at my faith, if I fail to keep growing, there's a sense in this verse that perhaps I'll miss some of "that for which Christ took hold of me"


There are more blessings to come. More growth to experience. More struggles for Christ to carry me through.


And if I just coast, I might miss some of it!
So my prayer is that Jesus will keep me accountable to my desire to read more. And pray more. And love Him more. And love others more.
(singing Hokey Pokey in my head ...)
Cuz That's what's it all about! :)

Friday, February 19, 2010

The sun came out! Grab the camera!

It's been awhile since everyone has felt really 100% around here, but today, it seems was a good day. The sun is shining, the snow is beautiful, the kids are happy ...





She's leaning on my knee in these ... "look at me! i'm cute! play bounce with me again?"















So I throw her up and plop her down and she comes crawling back ...





"Again?" :)

I love that she's feeling better and playful again. As much as I love Emma snuggles I was beginning to wonder if she was just going to be plastered to my shoulder forever!



















And not to be outdone ...







Man, I love this boy!
















































We even tried going outside for a little bit today. Bundled up the kids ...

Emma was not amused.





"I PROTEST!"

Emma and I didn't make it much off the back deck for more than 5 minutes, but Charlie had fun with his Tonka trucks.

Climbing the snowbanks



"Hi, Mommy!"



So far, not a bad day!

God bless you this weekend. We've got some fun stuff planned, hopefully I'll post some pics on Monday of a fun-filled and HEALTHY weekend :)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Butterfly Circus

Got 20 minutes?

I stumbled across this short film somewhere in the blogosphere and found it to be pretty darn inspiring.

"Yes, you do have an advantage..."

(I was having trouble opening my browser with the film embedded into the blog; follow the link if you are interested)
http://www.thedoorpost.com/hope/film/?film=4dd298f102c77b625cf37a9e7744ac68

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Funny!

Especially in light of last Thursday's post.

Mommy wasn't feeling well this morning, so Daddy and Grandma took the kids to the zoo. Grandma was holding Emma and a woman walked up to them and had the following conversation:

Lady: "Oh, she's so cute! Look at all that hair!"
Grandma: "Thanks!"
Lady: "How old is she?"
Grandma: "She's 15 months. She has a genetic syndrome"
Lady: "Oh ... well ... I'm sure she'll get better"


We actually think she's pretty perfect :)

Thursday, February 11, 2010

oops!

I wrote a new post, but I started it last week and so now it's out of order on the blog ... here it is again in case you've missed it

It's titled "Dear Stranger"

Greetings! It's me, the woman with the adorable girl you met at the Children's Museum yesterday!

I'm writing this because 2 years ago I didn't know what I'm about to tell you and I would have really appreciated it if someone had told me.

Let me start by saying that I'm sure you're frightened that you offended me in some way. You didn't. You were very kind and obviously genuinely thought my daughter was beautiful.

When you first saw me and my family while our 3-year-olds painted their faces, you commented on Emma's hair and told me she was adorable. Again, thank you!

Then you asked how old she was. When I answered that my 12 pound girl was 14 months old, your smile changed. That's ok. It's happened before and it will happen again.

You weren't sure what to say next. And I TOTALLY get it! :) You know not to say, "What's her problem?" or "Man, what's up with THAT?" or "What's WRONG with her?" You're more kind, considerate, and thoughtful than that. And that's why I'm writing to you. The vast majority of the people who meet Emma are just like you. Interested, but too kind and polite to ask the obvious next question.

And that's why you and the three other moms around you perked up when the older woman walked up and asked the following question:

"My son also has special needs. What's your daughter's diagnosis?"

That's the word you were looking for. DIAGNOSIS. It's not "what's her dysfunction?" and it's not "what's her prognosis?" (that means is she going to die soon ... don't ask that)

But just a simple question about what makes Emma unique.

When I answered and explained about the syndrome that none of you had ever heard of, I LOVED that you listened and genuinely looked like you wanted to learn. I, like most Mommies of kids with special needs, WANT to share about Emma. I love spreading awareness about CdLS and I love breaking down the barriers that create that awkward silence between "typical" families and my own.

And did you notice your kids liked meeting Emma, too? Kids LOVE Emma, and they take their cues from their parents about whether or not that's ok. Thank you for your willingness to have a conversation. You have no idea the impact that will have on your little ones. You think they aren't paying attention at times like that, but they are.

So that's all I wanted to say. I wanted to give you permission in the future if you see another family like mine to try something:

"My friend has a daughter with special needs, what's your son's diagnosis?"

(seriously. if you're reading this blog, whether i've met you in real life or not, go ahead and consider emma and me your friends)

Ask the question. I mean, use your common sense and if my 3-year-old is about to pee his pants in a public place, don't stop us, but if you find yourself at what could be the end of a very awkward conversation, it's ok, ASK!

Because who WOULDN'T want to meet my little gift from God, my Emma? :)

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Love


Do you ever just have moments that NEED to be photographed?
This is a weird picture because it's taken in a mirror at night and the flash went off, but that's not the point. The point is that this snuggle from my Bear just needed to be documented.
For me. :)
Emma's goofy. She's all over the place and doesn't really care to sit and read with me or play peek-a-boo.
But she loves me.
I needed that

Permanent

Emma has hearing loss.

We're getting her behind-the-ear hearing aids and that will correct for the type of hearing loss she has.

Ok

I'm really sick of this ...

But it's something we can do something about, so ultimately, it will be ok

So here's what they found:
Emma has normal hearing in mid- to low-frequencies and moderate hearing loss in the high frequencies. This doesn't mean she can hear Daddy better than Mommy or anything like that. High frequency speech sounds are things like 'ss' and 'k' and 'th' and other consonant sounds that aren't voiced. 'mmmm' is voiced, 't' is not. So she can hear that we are talking, and she can probably hear us call her name from across the room, but she can't tell the difference between the words 'star' and 'car'

This is obviously a problem and we have already gotten molds made of her little ears to get hearing aids made to address this hearing loss. I have glasses. Emma needs hearing aids. It's not a big deal in the grand scheme of things. It will be ok.

But it sucks

Thanks for your prayers! She did fine during the procedure; no airway issues with sedation or anything like that.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Dear Stranger,

Greetings! It's me, the woman with the adorable girl you met at the Children's Museum yesterday!

I'm writing this because 2 years ago I didn't know what I'm about to tell you and I would have really appreciated it if someone had told me.

Let me start by saying that I'm sure you're frightened that you offended me in some way. You didn't. You were very kind and obviously genuinely thought my daughter was beautiful.

When you first saw me and my family while our 3-year-olds painted their faces, you commented on Emma's hair and told me she was adorable. Again, thank you!

Then you asked how old she was. When I answered that my 12 pound girl was 14 months old, your smile changed. That's ok. It's happened before and it will happen again.

You weren't sure what to say next. And I TOTALLY get it! :) You know not to say, "What's her problem?" or "Man, what's up with THAT?" or "What's WRONG with her?" You're more kind, considerate, and thoughtful than that. And that's why I'm writing to you. The vast majority of the people who meet Emma are just like you. Interested, but too kind and polite to ask the obvious next question.

And that's why you and the three other moms around you perked up when the older woman walked up and asked the following question:

"My son also has special needs. What's your daughter's diagnosis?"

That's the word you were looking for. DIAGNOSIS. It's not "what's her dysfunction?" and it's not "what's her prognosis?" (that means is she going to die soon ... don't ask that)

But just a simple question about what makes Emma unique.

When I answered and explained about the syndrome that none of you had ever heard of, I LOVED that you listened and genuinely looked like you wanted to learn. I, like most Mommies of kids with special needs, WANT to share about Emma. I love spreading awareness about CdLS and I love breaking down the barriers that create that awkward silence between "typical" families and my own.

And did you notice your kids liked meeting Emma, too? Kids LOVE Emma, and they take their cues from their parents about whether or not that's ok. Thank you for your willingness to have a conversation. You have no idea the impact that will have on your little ones. You think they aren't paying attention at times like that, but they are.

So that's all I wanted to say. I wanted to give you permission in the future if you see another family like mine to try something:

"My friend has a daughter with special needs, what's your son's diagnosis?"

(seriously. if you're reading this blog, whether i've met you in real life or not, go ahead and consider emma and me your friends)

Ask the question. I mean, use your common sense and if my 3-year-old is about to pee his pants in a public place, don't stop us, but if you find yourself at what could be the end of a very awkward conversation, it's ok, ASK!

Because who WOULDN'T want to meet my little gift from God, my Emma? :)

Friday, February 5, 2010

Emma videos

I finally got a chance to video some of Emma's latest skills.

video

Emma seems to have gotten the CdLS memo that occassional laughter for no apparent reason (even in mid-crawl...) is totally welcome! I don't mind one bit :)

It makes me really happy when she waves like this ... it's not consistent, but those of you with 14 month-old children, typical or not, know full well how they feel about displaying their tricks on command, right!?

And the bouncing at the end of the video seems to be a pretty consistent request for our "bouncing" game, which means Mommy throws her up in the air. I LOVE that she's communicating!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Ok, so this next one is a game that Emma loves to play with Charlie (and several of her friends at church, as well ... wow, we know some patient kids!)

video

And Charlie's a pretty big fan, as well!!

And lastly, this is Emma clapping:

video

The "help" sign doesn't show up nearly as often as "all done" because I think she's decided that she doesn't NEED it much. She could be over by the couch trying to get something up out-of-reach and start calling "mom-mom-mom-mom" (which, again, doesn't mean me, I don't think. I think it's just a syllable that means someone comes to her aid when they can't see her sign). I'll then come out of the kitchen and ask "would you like HELP?" while signing 'help'. She sees the sign, immediately calms down, and then will crawl over to me so I can help her ...

So, like in this video, she sees that help is on the way and she moves to the person offering it, as if to say "oh! yes! i would love some help!"

sigh ... at least she's cute :)

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

A birth story

http://enjoyingthesmallthings.blogspot.com/2010/01/nella-cordelia-birth-story.html

Make sure you have a Kleenex with you ...

This mother's honesty has touched me deeply.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

LOVE this boy!

Seriously! He's just so stinkin cute!!
Charlie is at a really cute age right now. He's so polite and conversational and engaging and I'm just so proud of the little person he's becoming!

Yesterday Emma took an extra-long nap so Charlie and I had a chance to do a non-Emma activity and he chose PAINTING :)
Notice Mommy even got into the action a little with some pink and purple bugs stickers.



Oooooh, the messy-ness. Love it! :)



This little man is so full of life! I just love it!





And he also had a very exciting first yesterday. Last night was Charlie's first trip to the dentist. I (Becky) am one of those really sick people who truly honestly LOVES the dentist, so I got to take him. I love the feeling of super-clean teeth when we're done!
Charlie was so polite to everyone there. He sat and read books and chatted with the hygenist while she cleaned Mommy's teeth. (He mostly told her about Monster Trucks ... hillarious!)
And then when it was his turn he did such a great job!




They had sunglasses for him to wear when they turned the light on, and he loved being in the big chair.















All-in-all, I am super proud of this little boy!


God has blessed us so much, we're so thankful