Wednesday, January 30, 2008

10 Random Thoughts...

Warning: Not the most pleasant post.

1. I don't understand why my eight year old vomits on the carpet.

2. I'm amazed that my 3-year old can have his blood drawn and not even flinch.

3. Crew's yearly hip x-ray showed that the hips are okay but his stool is impacted. Great!

4. Enema's really do work.

5. My oldest is getting harrassed because he is rooting for the Patriots. Hmmm.

6. Miss Daisy is Crazy. Mr. Klutz is Nuts... reading is fun:)

7. My crockpot lid is glued together in 8 different places.

8. I have a basketball rolling around in my van. Bleh.

9. Neurologists don't return your calls.

10. The days are getting longer. Yeah!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Dedication run for the Prophet! Who else is in?

This Saturday, Marathon Mommies (an awesome blog encouraging women to get on their feet) will be running in honor of President Gordon B. Hinckley. Originally they wanted to get a total of 97 miles (for his 97 years) but after it hit Channel 2 News they have extended the invitation to everyone.

Are you ready for a challenge? Their challenge is extended to anyone of any religion to ask themselves "how far would you go?"In honor of President Hinckley's life they are encouraging women to take on the challenge to get on their feet. You can walk or you can run - but just do it in honor of a man who was an incredible example of living life to the fullest and being as healthy as you can be.

If you have been wanting to get active or if you run every day take a minute and challenge yourself to 1 mile or 100. For me, I am setting a goal higher than I've ever run... which will be SEVEN miles! Jen, a local reporter, in Salt Lake City Utah for KUTV 2 is doing a story on all blogger women out there, so visit the Marathon Mommies blog and let them know you are in. There's nothing like running with purpose!
Photo from 2002 Olympics

Monday, January 28, 2008

Pepsi 2008 Superbowl Commercial

This is just too funny! Don't worry about the volume... there isn't any. He he.

Bowl Night

I couldn't resist posting this picture of Crew with his Aunt Becky. We were a little surprised that Crew loved the game so much. Thank you, Becky, for introducing Crew to a new sport!

President Gordon B. Hinckley 1910 - 2008

President Hinckley passed away last night. I am happy that he is with his sweet wife again, yet he will surely be missed.

What an amazing man! I've loved his counsel, witty humour and great wisdom. I know that he was a prophet of the Lord and I feel blessed to have been led by him.

S was sitting with me watching TV when the "Breaking News" came on. S was sad and I know that President Hinckley will be missed by young and old.

How thankful I am to have had his counsel throughout much of my adult life. I've looked forward to his talks each Conference as I've tried to raise my children in the gospel and serve in the church.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

The Intensive Therapy Program

While we have been home from the Intensive Therapy Program for over a month, I still want to document our time there. I posted previously about the long drive each day and the 4-hour per day therapy program. However, the travel time was the least of my stresses. There is a reason they label it an "Intense" program. I felt like the exercises were pushing Crew in a way he has never been worked before. After about 9 days of inconsolable crying during the Neurosuit part, I became convinced that Crew had torn a muscle or something. It was just to hard too watch and I asked them to stop so I could look at his legs. Every time he was put into a hamstring stretch of any kind he would collapse and start crying. I was biting my nails trying not to freak out and I even told them I was quite disappointed in the program. I knew going into it that it would be hard but we have always tried to make therapy fun and this wasn't fun. I was so worried that it would ruin his perception of "therapy" and I told them that. They gave us the option of bumping the hours per day to 3 hours and I felt like that was a good move.

Before we committed to the program, Carl and I decided that it would be worth it if he even learned one small skill during his stay. Sometimes, something as small as holding a toy or sitting for a few more seconds can be a huge accomplishment. Realistically we hoped that he would pick up something small. We knew the program was not a cure all.

Our days started with a massage and then 2 hours in the Neurosuit (which we later reduced to one hour per day). Half an hour in the stander, another half hour in the monkey cage and a half hour in the spider cage where we worked on various strength training exercises. Crew did quite well in the cages considering and he liked the stander.

From the pictures you can see the pain in his face, the determination, and his sweet temperament... trying to look happy when he's not. Maybe it was harder on me as it is still hard to write about it without getting upset.

So, the big question is was it worth it? I truthfully can say that it was. Crew gained strength most noticeably in his legs. His high kneel is so much better. He learned to stand up from the bench with only a finger for balance and has made progress with his walker. When using his walker he is able to turn sharper and his endurance has improved. So thankfully we did make progress... in more than one skill which is more than we expected.

The next question: Would you do it again? I have to say that I would. The center doesn't take children before they are 3 and so we qualified but I wish they would have said something about the level of development. A typically developing three year old understand when you say for example, "Just 1 one more and then your done". Crew totally did not get this and sometimes we would sit for several minutes waiting for him to do just one more squat, one more leg lift, one more crunch. I really do think that he would have done better if cognitively he was at a higher level. So with that said, "Maybe again next year".

Friday, January 25, 2008

Learning to Sign

I've been trying to get myself enrolled in some ASL classes but it hasn't happened yet. Then, I found out that we qualify to have a Deaf Mentor come into the home to teach all of us ASL. We met our Deaf Mentor this week. She came with the program director who is also deaf but reads lips as well. I was able to communicate with him as long as I was sitting right next to him so that he could read my lips. I used the few signs I know when possible and we only had to use pen and paper once.

Starting next week the Deaf Mentor will come to our home by herself. We will not be able to communicate orally. So it will be pen and paper and very little ASL to start. The whole family is required to attend.

I'm excited:)

Thursday, January 24, 2008

IEP Goals and Services

Thanks for your support on our behalf. This years IEP went quite smoothly compared to last years. I didn't even have to whip out the Special Education Golden Rules handbook:) I really did feel like all parties involved had Crew's best interest in mind and it didn't hurt that little Crew had 12 months to capture the hearts of so many.

The majority of last years goals were not achieved but some of them were. We are making progress... it's just a little slow. Last year Crew could walk short distances in his walker with the use of forearm supports and a sling seat. Currently, Crew walks using regular handholds without the sling for support. It was reported that Crew can now walk 250 feet. Yippee!!! It is so amazing that he has made this progress considering we still have not achieved a rolling goal. What is that all about?

Last year Crew started preschool with a vocabulary of about 12 words (signs included). Now, we are up to....


35 words!!!

I had no idea:) Our goal for the next year is to double that and to attain a MLU (mean length of utterance) of 2+ words. It was explained to me that children usually do not combine words until they have a vocabulary base of at least 50 words.

We added vision and hearing support to the IEP while maintaining services in PT, OT, ST, and "Motor Services", with an additional goal in the area of Social Interaction.

I also changed the days of preschool attended from 4 days a week to 3. I just felt strongly that we needed to free up his schedule some so we could add private speech therapy to the mix:) So, I am looking forward to having that additional time that I can spend one-on-one with Crew. He is just growing up way to fast!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Another Seizure

We had some more drama here today when Crew came home from school. When I stepped on the bus to get him out of his carseat the bus aide told me he was asleep. I bent over to unbuckle him and realized that he wasn't sleeping- he was having a seizure. I grabbed him and ran in the house, my heart racing. It lasted 20 minutes plus another half hour in the postictal state, then he was irritable for about four hours before finally taking a nap.

Tomorrow is the IEP and the time I had planned on preparing for it was spent with Crew instead. Sixteen people from the school district will be there along with myself, Carl, and my sister. I'm feeling stressed.

Wish us luck!

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Blessings, Opportunities... and my old back

For my own benefit I am recording that I ended the week with workout totals of 6 hours Cardio and 1 1/2 hours strength training. I feel pretty good... some sore muscles here and there except for a tender spot in my lower back. It feels bruised or like someone is poking a stick in my back and its in the same spot where my Chiropractor worked on last week. Maybe I'll be seeing him again soon.

I've been making more of an effort to recognize the blessings in my life. Earlier this week I was busy working on a project and I could hear Crew playing in the other room. S left a glass jar of marbles on the floor of his room and I could hear Crew playing with the marbles. I wasn't worried about it because I didn't think they would do him any harm... he doesn't put them in his mouth and I could tell he was just pulling marbles out of the jar and throwing them. I was just happy that he had something to entertain himself and it lasted over 20 minutes. Well, finally Crew came crawling into my room and we went on with other things.. making dinner and stuff. Hours later I walked back into the bedroom and found the marbles scattered everywhere. I bent over to pick them up and it was then that I realized the glass jar had shattered and there were pieces of glass mixed amongst the marbles. I have no idea how he managed to crawl out of that mess unharmed. Truly, a moment when we were blessed.

S played a basketball game again today. Last year he was on a winning team yet had very little opportunity to play. You know... it was mostly a one man show and when the "one boy" didn't do well he made a big deal of it and basically threw a fit. It was quite embarassing really! This year S is playing the majority of the game and doing quite well. Unfortunately, they have lost every game so far. The team deserves a medal for their sportsmanship. I've been so impressed with the boys and their attitudes and I'm thinking I'm grateful that S is on a team that works together.

S is a 5th grader and in his school they have the opportunity to be on the student council. The student council isn't voted in by the studentbody, rather selected by the teachers based on attitude and grades. One of the council members moved and S was asked to take his place on the council which is a great honor. I am pleased:)

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Pediatric Rehab/ Speech

Tonight we met with Trent, our new speech therapist. Right away he started signing with Crew and connecting with him. We discussed my expectations and previous disappointments. I could tell right off that he has a lot of experience and a wide knowledge base. We are for sure going to start seeing him on a regular basis.

I am so relieved!

And... I am tired so that is all:)

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Sunday stuff

I was right- they are leaving me in Cub Scouts. With the new ward realignment we got a new Primary Presidency, Relief Society Presidency, and Young Womens Presidency. I'm sad to see the old ones go, especially the Relief Society Pres. Oh, but it is always good to get new people in who have fresh ideas.

Sunbeams is a disaster. Don't get me wrong- the teacher and other children are fine. It's my son. *sigh*
His attention span is like three minutes and then he wanted to hang out at the drinking fountain.

I need a COKE.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Briana Walker and lots of SNOW

Today we finally got to experience the calm after the storm. It all started on Wednesday when we woke up to about 6 inches, then it continued to snow all day long. I think the snow totals for that day were well over 12 inches. Then it snowed again on Thursday and again this morning.
The snow plows have had a hard time keeping up with it all and Wednesday it took me 20 minutes to drive my kids the two miles to school and back.

S and H have spent hours building snowforts, making snowballs, oh and shoveling.
Crew and I zoomed around the block today. There were a few snow flurries at the time and he would open his mouth hoping to catch one or two.

Yesterday I met Briana Walker. My sister, Sheri, was able to get her to come to our little town to speak to the Elementary students. Her story is an inspiration. I was already kind of having an emotional day and then while listening to her story I had a hard time not crying. I can't really explain the feelings. She is just so beautiful inside and out and exemplifies a zest for life. A car accident 6 years ago left her paralyzed from the waist down. Today, she lives life to the fullest... wakeboarding, skiing, and dancing in her wheelchair. She is a model for "Colours", a company that sells wheelchairs. You may have seen the commercial. And most amazingly she performs across the nation dancing hip hop. I would love to see that! Sheri is on a mission to promote disability awareness and talks to children in our schools about the theme "Everyone Can". Learning to recognize that EVERYONE has something that they are good at. Sheri too is amazing with her ability to educate others on the importance of seeing the person and not the disability.

Oh, and a pic of my house so you can all see how hard I've worked to keep the snow cleared off. **patting self on back**

I really don't mind the winters as much as I use to. I just wish it didn't last so long;)

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Tuesday, January 08, 2008


When I'm looking for information on the Internet I often google a word or phrase and then click "Images". Do you all do that too? Sometimes you have to be careful because there are some strange images floating around out there.

Strangely enough I am having multiple hits a day from people googling "Pressure sores" and "Therapy Ball" and clicking images which brings them to my blog. The therapy ball pic on my blog is a photo with Crew during a PT session. The pressure sore picture only shows his heels. It's a little disturbing. Just a little. I'm not sure what to think about it. In a way, I'm hoping that it helps someone out there get the info they need.

Do you think I should be worried?

Monday, January 07, 2008

This and That

Yesterday was the ward realignments. We had 14 wards in our stake and now there are 17. We lost some really great families in our ward but at least I still have the same Bishop. Our next door neighbor was called as 1st Counselor in the Bishopric. We are thrilled! I don't think you can find better people than Ben and Kristen. As far as callings go, I'm guessing they will keep me in Cub Scouts for now.

Crew started Sunbeams last Sunday but he ended up in the hall with Carl while I helped teach his class. I really just wanted him to start off the year with the other kids his age but.... it's a long story.

Today I spent an hour on the TreadClimber. I love it! Also, I was able to get some de-cluttering done before Crew came home from Preschool.

Crew's new DAFO's are giving him pressure sores so I wasn't able to send him to school in them today. Oh and his glasses are pinching him right up by the eye and he actually has a blister. When I stopped at Knighton Optical to get them fixed there was a sign saying the store was closed. Thankfully, the owner is in the process of opening his own store so that is good. I called the owner and he said he could meet me at the store and fix them for me. How nice is that! Unfortunately, we weren't able to meet today. I guess there is always something.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Falling in love with BOOKS

I spent the first four years as a mom educating other moms on the importance of reading to their children. I've committed dozens of statistics to memory... how important it is to read from birth, the impact fathers have in reading to their children, the different learning styles.... I could go on and on. I want to think that my efforts helped someone. In fact I do think that having a plethora of books on hand instilled a love of learning to some degree. S and H love memorizing science facts, math facts, history... but they don't love to read.


S is a great reader he just doesn't care... but he does read the assigned reading from school.

H doesn't like to read. Reading is a struggle. We fight tooth and nail...

Until now. We've tried the Magic Tree House Series, Junie B Jones, Ralph Mouse, Ready Freddy, Goosebumps, books about Knights, Spiders, Sharks, Trains, Bugs, Animals, War, Birds, Dinosaurs, Joke books, Riddles...

We found something that sparks his interest, makes him giggle, motivates. A book he wants to talk about with his friends. A book made just for H.


Come on, read it... You know you want to!

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Back to the grind

The kids went back to school today. It was so hard waking up early and getting the boys to school before 8:00. I was wishing we had one more day to kind of get back on schedule but I guess we survived it.

Crew had a PT appointment. He practiced crawling up a 20% grade slope, transitioning to sit and then throwing a ball down the hill to knock over the giant block tower. Then he gets to slide down on his bottom. The therapists are great and he has been getting a lot of attention because they are training a new PT and they also have an intern so when we go there are 2 or 3 PT's working with him at once.

I've been dragging all day and then I dragged myself down the street where I joined a gym. Okay, I hate wasting money so I've determined to put in the time and start feeling better about myself. I love working out but it hasn't been on the top of my list lately. It's time for a change.

This year I resolve to laugh more, play more, and remember to say "I'm sorry". That's all!

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

A Time to Play

We've spent the last 10 days together as a family which is a nice break from the 60 hour work week that Carl maintains. Christmas day was spent at home all day with a visit from Grandpa and Grandma. The boys were happy and Carl and I enjoyed watching them open gifts. Many hours were spent building with Legos and stuff. Crew loves his little race track. Carl and I didn't really do gifts to each other this year. It was nice. I hate thinking about all the money that is spent at Christmas.

After Christmas we had our trip to PCMC and bummed around the city that day. The next day was spent skiing at Beaver Mountain, lunch at Fredericos Pizza, and a family party. Friday the extended family got together for an evening of Bowling. We all had a good time, in fact I didn't anticipate how much Crew would love it! Now I think we've found something to do for his upcoming birthday.

Saturday we took S and H to the Jazz game. S was determined to get there early so he could watch the players warm up and such. It was a lot of fun... a very close game, but they lost:(

Then New Years Eve we spent another day on the slopes. H progressed a lot after he got the coolest instructor ever. It's amazing what an hour of lessons can do:) We came home and ordered a pizza. Grandpa and Grandma were kind enough to hang with us... watching movies, putting together a puzzle:) H even gave me a kiss to ring in the New Year. I love that kid!

I have never been this lazy but its been so fun:) I've put together two 500 piece puzzles, read 3 books and all of the above. Somehow I've managed to keep up on laundry, bathrooms are cleaned, van is cleaned out. Ah, back to the grind tomorrow.

Wishing you a prosperous and peaceful 2008!