Sunday, December 31, 2006

2006 in Review

Thoroughly Mormon Millie used this idea on her blog and I decided to copy it. Take the first two sentences of the first post for each month and you'll have a fun review of the year 2006. I didn't start blogging until May so that's where I'll start:

Crew's therapist brought us some new equipment- a creepster crawler made by the Assistive Technology lab at USU. After Crew's gym class we came home and tried it out.

We've had swim day, field day, awards assembly, water parties, and to top it off..... a pizza party. Yes, this is what my kids have been going to school for this past week.

As a child, my school district asked the young people to write something (essay, poem, etc) about "What America Means To Me". Being only 8 years old, I sat down and wrote my feelings of living in a free country.

We celebrated H's Birthday this past week. He is the big 7 now! It was a fun weekend.

When life gets you down.... It's a good idea to reflect on those things that I'm thankful for. Here's a few:
Good health. (So I can take care of my fam)
3 fantastic boys (I couldn't be more proud)
great therapists & doctors
Sonic mozzarella sticks & cherry lime slushy

I think it's been two weeks since I've had a chance to sit down at the computer. Last week we took the kids on a long needed vacation.

Tis the season to break out of the "fog". Even though I truly treasure staying home with my kids, I feel like my brain is falling out.

DECEMBER - Neurology Again
I took Crew to Primary's for his Neurology appointment. Everything was fast fast.

So there you have it! A quick review of the Gizmo family.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Family Ski Day

Yesterday we took the boys skiing. Actually, it was a first time for my DH and our boys. My 3 wonderful SIL's took care of Crew while I kidnapped my brothers to help teach the first-timers the basics of skiing.

My brothers were great... very patient and helpful. Carl and S caught on okay. H didn't have fun! Apparently, H wasn't feeling well yesterday because today he has the flu. S caught on quickly. In fact, by his 6th run down the mountain he was flying so fast I thought he was going to smash into something or someone but he was actually in control.

We would really like to be a "skiing family" but realize that it's not going to happen anytime soon, if ever.

Friday, December 29, 2006

Shriners- December 27

Crew had his first appointment with Shriners Hospital on Wednesday. We are so blessed to have this awesome Orthopedic Hospital so close to us. The entire staff was pleasant and treated our family great. Upon arriving, Crew received an X-ray of his hips. This is something that we are suppose to have done every year but I've been putting it off and its almost been two years. His hips looked great.

Then they sent us to a room to have his molds made for new AFO's. He has already grown out of his second pair. The AFO's give him the support that he needs for weight bearing and keep him from "toe walking". I've been stressing about how to pay for another pair of braces and am so thankful for our acceptance to Shriners as it is a FREE hospital.

Also, Shriners is accepting Crew for weekly therapy. I was not expecting them to offer such great services. However, with him moving out of the Early Intervention program I am thrilled at the opportunity to continue getting great services. This is just an example, again, of how things work out when you least expect them too. I am so thankful!

Media crazed!

H asked for two things from Santa; an MP3 Player and a new video game. Okay, I don't even own an MP3, but H does! This picture was taken moments before H decided to take it upon himself to "DOWNLOAD" music from my computer.

As I was putting the Ham in the oven, Independent H crashed my computer! Yes, I found him sitting at the computer, MP3 plugged in, screen frozen and completely locked up. I was a bit stressed out for a portion of the day until I was able to get it going again. Posted by Picasa

Christmas Eve

Sunday was a nice relaxing day. After church we had plenty of time for naps, wrapping last minute gifts, and Carl and S even took a walk. The boys made cookies for Santa.

Christmas Eve traditions also include: Reading "I Believe in Santa Clause", an eye opening comparison of Santa to Jesus. We talked about the life of Jesus and also his birth. The book also includes the meaning of the Christmas symbols, such as: the star, bows, wreaths, etc. It was fun and I was amazed at how much the boys already know and understand.

We had our traditional opening of one gift from Carl and I. S & H received robes and Crew some new jammies.

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New floor- Dec 23rd,

Two days before Christmas we decided to rip out our carpet and install this pergo flooring. We bought the flooring months ago but haven't had time to put it in.

We decided at 8:00 pm on Friday to tackle the projects. We removed the carpet that night and started working again the next morning.

Our neighbor, Ben, came and showed us how to do it. He stayed and helped for 4 hours. What a nice guy! Carl and Ben worked hard and finished the room that afternoon.

We still need to do the hall but will wait until the holidays are over. We left the carpet down until then.

The floors feel so much cleaner. I love it that the kids can be kids without me stressin and worrying about stains.

The new floor will make it easier for Crew to use his walker. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

This years card

This is the picture that ended up on our Christmas card. Aren't they handsome! Posted by Picasa

A friend for Life!

Throughout my life I've been blessed with one very dear friend. P and I have been friends since we were about 3. We grew up together. I, the tomboy, and P a girly girl. As a child I was shy and insecure. P was outgoing, graceful.. popular. Memories with P include playing with dolls, building treehouses, riding horses, snowball fights, Lake Powell, bike rides. P and I were naive... a bit sheltered by our small town farm life. Together, we pieced together the story of the birds and the bees. Together, our testimonies were built. Together we survived a car accident where the car P was driving rolled end over end. P is like a sister to me.. or more. She understands me. She knows where I am coming from. She knows my heart. I love her.

P was my roommate during our first year of college. P quit and married her High School sweetheart. I continued to date and go to school. About a year after I graduated, I got married. One year later... had a baby. We went our separate ways. I moved south. P moved north. The distance and our crazy family lives made it difficult to get together. Over the past 10 years we've managed to get together 5 or 6 times. It's not enough. However, when you have a friend like P, it doesn't matter how long its been. We always pick up right where we left off. There is no awkwardness.

Today, was one of those precious lunches. My schedule felt packed but when P called and suggested we get together... I really wanted to. We had less than one hour. We ate lunch and chatted. P brought her two youngest. She is the cutest mom ever! All five of her kids are adorable, talented and WELL BEHAVED! After lunch she surprised me with a homemade gift. Sorry, P but I opened it! She made me a gorgeous wooden sign with this saying, "Courage does not always ROAR, Sometimes it is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, I will try again tomorrow". She also had a handmade card stating that when she saw the saying it reminded her of me. I almost cried!

I love you, P!

Preschool Assesment

Crew had an appointment today with the speech therapist and OT at the school district. In just over a month he turns 3. When these little guys turn three they transition from the Early Intervention program to the School District. The EI team has been awesome. They are like family. They care about my son and will bend over backwards or jump through hoops to get him what he needs. The services with EI are incredible. Rumor has it that the School District isn't very impressive and I've been trying to ignore the fact that we eventually have to face this transition.

When I first entered the room I noticed right off that my child was the only one with obvious disabilities. The moms looked at me with that, "Oh, and I thought my child had problems" look. I sat down to fill out the mountains of paperwork and one of the workers could see me juggling with an active thrashing kid and an oversized clipboard. She came over and took Crew from me. She sat on the floor and played with him. I was happy to see that she was so willing to get to know him.

The OT called us back to the room. She put Crew in his walker and helped him down the hall. Once we were situated in the room and she started working with Crew, I mentioned that we needed to convince the school that PT was needed. Immediately, I sensed her distaste for me. See, in our school district they don't have a PT. If there is a need they are required, by law, to get one. At our previous meeting I was told that if the OT felt there was a need for PT then the district would contract it out.

The OT kept saying things like... "this isn't Early Intervention", and "we don't call it therapy", and "we work as a team". What is that! She said that PT wasn't guaranteed unless there was a need. I said, "Well isn't that obvious". She commented that school isn't the place for "therapy" and that their focus is academics and asked why he wouldn't be able to get his PT through outpatient therapy. I explained that it can be a financial burden to take a child to outpatient therapy 2X a week. She said, "Well, we can't provide therapy for him just because you can't afford it". HELLO!

I explained that it's proven that if a childs motor development is improved then his cognitive abilities tend to improve as well. She agreed. However, I felt she had an abrasive personality or a chip on her shoulder. I was in no way prepared to deal with this woman. As I watched her interact with Crew I realized how helpless he is and how disabled he is. At home I get use to our routine and I focus on what he CAN do but in that environment today I saw an oversized baby. It makes me sad.

The final IEP will be in January. During the IEP, we (I mean they) will decide what services Crew will recieve, what days he will go to preschool, and what class he will attend. Until then I'm going to keep on loving our EI team.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

A Christmas Memory

Coming from a large family is something I've always been proud of. There were ten of us. Mom, Dad, seven children, and Lorin. My father is the hardest working man I know. We farmed 200 acres of wheat, alfalfa, mint, and sod. Spring, summer, and fall required long hours of physically exhausting work. The financial payoff was slim. Our family struggled and mom & dad often went without. They are great examples of sacrifice.

By the time winter rolled around, things on the farm were slowing down. Dad often worked building machinery or constructing houses (as a general contractor). I know that as Christmas time approached the family funds were scarce. However, this did not stop Santa from coming.

As a child, I never worried that Santa "might not come". I knew that he would. The days proceeding Christmas were so exciting. Presents were wrapped and placed under the tree. Mom made lots and lots of treats... which we delivered to neighbors. For many years we made gifts for each other. I remember one year I made a head band for my brother. I cut out the fabric and sewed it together. It was about 3 inches wide and I printed his name, "Seth", on it in bold letters using permanent marker. I guess I was quite young. Its really funny now to think that the headband was all I could come up with. Seth wore the headband... to bed. ;)

On Christmas Eve, we all chose a spot on the couch or chairs to place our stockings. Then comes the funny part. We all searched the house high and low to find the biggest socks (we didn't have the real Christmas Stockings). I didn't even know that there was such a thing... ya know, beautifully sewn giant stockings to hang from the mantle. My father is 6 1/2 feet tall and wears a size 13 shoe. Dad's socks were the best thing we could find, and on Christmas morn each sock had a big fat orange in the toe, nuts and candy. The girls got lip gloss or nail polish.

Now I reflect on the stocking scene and wonder if dad's socks ever fit him the same after they were emptied. I doubt it!

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Click, Click, Click

I'm in blogging heaven! We have high speed internet. Goodbye dial-up! I've only been getting a maximum speed of 28.8 which is S..L..O..W.. Now I can finally read and comment without having serious anxiety. YEAH.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Never a dull moment....

Here is this years attempt at getting a decent picture for Christmas cards. However, it seemed to be painfully difficult. I was contemplating running to Kiddee Kandids. I love that place! The photographers are awesome and I always come home happy. Maybe I will still do it.

But this is who we are, RIGHT?

If anyone wants a Christmas card email me at:

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Friday, December 08, 2006

A date with H.

H was feeling sad because S was invited to go play raquetball with a friend and H wasn't invited. In H's eyes, this friend is equally his. I suggested that H and I go out for Hot Chocolate. He thought that would be great, especially since he is basically banned from chocolate. I suggested 7-11. He was game.

We drove downtown together. H and I, out for a treat. It was fun. I wish I could do things like this with my boys more often. We ended up buying a box of donuts to go with the Hot Chocolate. H picked out a Chocolate Chocolate donut... big surprise. He requested two straws for his drink but I don't think he realized how hot it would be. Not exactly a guzzling opportunity. However, we added a couple ice cubes at home. H is happy.

Okay, I know it sounds like we go out every night for treats but rest assured, its been an unusual week. Oh, and last night I googled McDonalds Hot Fudge Sundae and found out it has more than 350 calories. I don't think its worth it! Do you?

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Use Your Words

Crew has been really lazy lately with his communication. I think that he has been working so hard on crawling that we've slipped up a little on the verbal/sign. However, recently when he starts whining, I will stop and say, "Crew use your words". A lot of the time he will stop whining and start jabbering. The jabber isn't clear-- at all, but I usually know what he wants so I give in because he made an effort to communicate properly.

Tonight we went to Redbox to get a movie. Since we were at McDonalds I decided to get 4 Hot Fudge Sundaes to go. DH and kids got in the van while I waited for the sundaes. When I came out to the van and got in Crew started screeching and whining. I thought he was just doing his usual "I don't like my carseat" protest. Holding a tray full of Hot Fudge Sundaes, I turn to him and said, "Crew, use your words!". He immediately stops whining and quickly signs "Please".

Now, how cute is that! I handed S a spoon and asked him to give that boy some icecream. After all, he deserves it, doesn't he?

Differently Abled

I've never heard it put that way but ToysRUs has a catalog out this year for DifferentlyAbled children. I remember looking at it last year and getting ideas for Crew but I didn't remember they called it that and I think its cute!

I'm wishing I could just go pick one up from the store so I could pour through the pages because I'm trying to look at it online and this stupid dial-up is driving me bonkers.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Neurology Again

I took Crew to Primary's for his Neurology appointment. Everything was fast fast. I didn't even have a chance to sit down in the waiting room when they called us back. We saw the P.A. because our fav Neuro Dr. is booked until April. What a joke! The P.A. was nice and seemed to know her stuff but I just always worry about these things. His seizures are still not under control so we are switching meds. We're starting him on Depakoate and then we will wean him off of the Topamax.

When I first started driving down to Primarys, I hated it. I know it sounds really stupid but I've always been terrified to drive in Salt Lake. I'm a country girl, I guess. On a good note, I realized today that I'm finally feeling somewhat comfortable as long as I know where I'm going. I was able to relax and enjoy the holiday spirit of downtown SLC. I thought about stopping to do some shopping but noticed that Crew zonked out and decided it just wasn't worth it.

At home, I was able to do all the "dirty" work that I've been avoiding and was long overdue... floors and bathrooms. I also emptied all the laundry baskets. Yeah!

I took Crew with me to my haircut. The hair lady has a toy poodle that Crew loves! He was so happy and excited and gave him hugs and kisses. Crew would so be in heaven if we ever got a dog. The haircut is cute. I love my hair when she styles it but it will look lame again tomorrow.