Friday, June 24, 2016

Enjoying our free time

Spring and Summer fun....
The boys school teachers came to cheer them on during one of their baseball games.

Owen and Preston playing at a game in GA.

Logan and Nathan playing at the same game.

Logan flying in the air at Airwalk.

Preston and I took a trip to CA for our 15th anniversary.



Fun family time at the pool.


Annual camping trip with the Tolberts.








Karis turned 10 on June 4th.  We had a small family party.  She really enjoyed it and had lots of fun.

Logan doing the butterfly at one of his swim meets.

Vacation Bible School at Shades Mountain.








Logan's swim meet fans.

Camp Strive Weekend!






Logan is swimming 

Owen is working hard on propping on his elbows.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

The boy the world did not see

Who was this boy?  Did he hold super powers to be invisible?  Did he ever venture out in to the world?  How could this boy be missed by the world?

He was an ordinary nine-year old boy.  He worked hard in school and did quite well.  He had many friends whom he enjoyed playing with often.  His favorite sport was swimming.  He loved to eat hot dogs, macaroni and cheese, broccoli, spinach, pizza, hamburgers and all the other yummy foods most kids enjoy.  He was active in church and looked forward to Sunday School, Wednesday night activities and the extra MIT retreats he could participate in with his Dad.  He loved reading the Percy Jackson and Heroes of Olympus series.  He enjoyed writing a sequel to the last book of a series because he wanted to know just a little more about the story.  He loved his dogs: Charlie and Lucy O'Leary.

The love the boy had for people, especially those with special needs, was incredible.  He saw and understood the purpose God had in creating each of us.  To him, when someone did something a little differently it was beautiful.  He was always selfless, loving and helpful.  In this area his heart was so beautiful and pure.

So, how could this boy who was physically around others every day not be seen by the world?  You see, this boy had three siblings with special needs.  The world saw the three siblings, talked about the three siblings, praised the three siblings, gave goodies to the three siblings, wanted to bring others to see the three siblings, asked questions about the three siblings and prayed for the three siblings.  When out in public, whether the three siblings were present or not, they are the ones who are always the topic of conversation.  Being that the boy was only nine, this was very difficult for him. Why did no one see him, talk about him, praise him, give goodies to him, bring other to see him, ask about him or pray for him?

Hopefully one day he will be the boy the world does see.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

The mid-April update

Time sure seems to fly by when you are busy.  Since it has been more than a month since my last post, this may be a long one.

Owen:
I know many of you have been praying for Owen these past few months.  First, we weaned him off all his medications.  At first the process was hard and Owen was having a really rough time.  Now that he is off all his medications, he is doing great.  His muscles feel better than when he was on the medicines.  We no longer have to wake him up if he falls asleep early to make sure he gets all his medicine and he does not experience any pain if he is just a few minutes late on a dose.  He seemAs to be happier and more alert too.  He has started a few new word approximations for, "I love you" and "ball".   Owen started seeing a new neurologist last month; Dr Janye Ness. She is fabulous and doing lots of research to find out what is going on with Owen.  He had an MRI and spinal tap done just over a week ago.
 She came to the appointment and gave me the results while I was dressing Owen in recovery.  His MRI looked great.  She said it was hard to believe she was looking at a premature child because his brain looked so good.  She said he is definitely in there and she is going to try her hardest to figure out what is going on that would stop him from talking.  We have the results of one of the two spinal tap tests that were run, and it looks great too.  We go back and see her again in June.  Between now and then she is going to do more research in trying to figure out what may be going on with Owen.  We also have an appointment with a CranioSacral therapist on Friday.  I am excited to see this new type of therapy and am optimistic it will be good for Owen.

On a non-medical front, Owen is enjoying swimming at Lakeshore Foundation, playing baseball with Miracle League and being in kindergarten.  He also loves Wednesday nights and Sunday mornings at church.  This coming week, Owen will be a shark in the kindergarten play. (I will post pictures...hopefully soon after.)  We also purchased some new hiking child carriers, a little bigger than our old ones.  The carriers ship tomorrow.  We are excited to have them and plan to do lots of hiking, berry picking, etc with the boys in their new packs.

Nathan:
Nathan is doing well.  He LOVES Luigi from super mario brothers.  He has a stuffed Luigi that goes everywhere with him, has a Luigi lunch box and a few Luigi shirts.  He texts everyone he knows, "Newer Super Luigi U" from my phone.  (That is his favorite game).  He loves playing the Wii U with Logan, or running around the Luigi world maps (you would need to know how the game is set up for that to make any sense).  He is swimming at Lakeshore Foundation with Owen.  Nathan is working a lot on standing in the water.
 He is also playing baseball with Miracle League and enjoying Kindergarten too.  In the kindergarten play he will be an octopus.

Logan:
Logan and Preston enjoyed a father/son church retreat last weekend.  They went hiking, canoeing, and tons of other outdoor fun.  


Logan is swimming at Lakeshore Foundation too as well as taking some pool diving classes.  He will start Homewood Swim Team at the end of May.  He is doing well in 3rd grade and enjoys all his friends.  His favorite two subjects are History and Bible.  The last few weeks at school have had a lot of fun experiences.  They went on a field trip to The Exceptional Foundation (a day activity center for adults with mental disabilities).  The kids enjoyed playing games and making crafts with some of the people there.
  They had field day last Friday.

  It rained, so the games were set up inside but all the kids still had a lot of fun.  Logan also loved Roman Mega Day.  He has been studying Rome in school this semester and studying Latin all year.  Each child had to wear a tunic or stolla.  I made Logan's tunic myself!




Karis:
Karis is working daily at home with me on her speech.  She has up to about 300 words and we are working really hard on putting two words together.  She is seeing the boys speech therapist and we are really learning a lot from her.  Karis is also working hard in the area of physical therapy.  The boys PT recommended some several home exercises, etc and we try to work on them daily.  I can see her legs and hips starting to get much stronger.  Karis is enjoying second grade and we really like her teacher.  Tomorrow Karis will attend an appointment at the International Adoption Clinic.

Every Sunday when the weather is nice our family heads down to Veteran's Park for some fun.  The kids love playing on the playground and in the big open field.
After the boys baseball games we head over to the playground for some fun!
Logan and I, along with Charlie and Lucy O'Leary enjoyed the Mutt Strutt last Saturday morning.