Monday, December 17, 2007

Well, the month is flying by. Mary turns 7 tomorrow - which is amazing to me. I am really behind the eight ball this year -- haven't sent out Christmas cards yet (They are coming...I promise) - haven't finished Christmas know how it goes. I'm working too much...but that's retail in December. Once we finish inventory in January I will anticipate a few less hours and a little more time at home.

Katie has an ear/sinus/something infection. With her it can be really hard to tell. We went to the ER today because her doctors office couldn't squeeze her in until Thursday -- and she was sitting in Bill's big chair in the front room pulling at her ear and saying "ouchee". (which for her is a big accomplishment seeing that she doesn't really say any words consistently.

Well...lots to do for the big b-day tomorrow. I'll try to post pics later.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Things have been chaotic -- not a good excuse for ignoring the blog...but I'll try to do a quick update. We are once again having issues with Katie's "new" classroom. This is not the appropriate place to go into details..but if you know us and love Katie, then pray that we will choose the best option for her.

I have some great new pics of the girls from some recent outings, I will add them to this post. Bill spent last week in Florida for work - lucky him -- the weather there was beautiful, and in Michigan it was not so beautiful - unless you are an eskimo and want to build a new igloo.

My work is crazy - but that is retail in December.....

Saturday, November 24, 2007

I don't have much time but I at least wanted to update...

Katie's time in the Kindergarten classroom went exceptionally well. I am hoping that will lead to increased time in the classroom for her. Her diet of gluten and dairy free is killing me -- she is so hungry and it hurts me to see her beg for foods she can't have. I am praying for strength to continue with her diet and that God would show me additional foods she might be interested in.

Mary is doing well -- almost 7 years old -- just a few weeks to go. She is loving first grade and reading like crazy.

Work is nuts for me but calming down for Bill. Black Friday was nuts, but it was nice to not be a manager this year. I had to be at work at 3 am for a 4 am opening -- crazy -- but I've survived.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

The days have been clicking off faster than I can believe. I am trying to not be neglectful of this blog -- I have just been a little busy. We have so much going on with school and Katie's therapies, scheduling etc. Some days I just don't feel like there is enough of me to go around :) Things with us are good. Bill's work is finally winding down just as mine is getting into full swing.

The girls are good. Katie has started eating in the lunchroom a day or two a week, and this week she was actually able to eat lunch with her sister. Tomorrow she is going to start spending a little time in a Kindergarten classroom. This is so exciting for me. I can't wait to hear how it goes. My expectations are very realistic -- but we are hopeful that this will be a good starting point for her.

I'm tired. Lots of work and little sleep. I'm off tomorrow - and am convinced to spend a little time doing nothing but relaxing. I'm excited to do a little reading and maybe even take a nap. Yee-hah!

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

As if I don't have enough going on with AUTISM in my world, I received a call from Katie's teacher yesterday that they had done a craft project with cinnamon and my daughters hands had started to swell and were covered in a red rash. It was only 45 minutes from the end of the day and they said there were no other symptoms (like not being able to breathe, etc) so I decided to just wait and pick her up at the normal time.

She seemed fine. We had a babysitter for her as my parents wanted to take us to see The Polar Express in IMAX 3D (which was awesome). When we got home from the movie, Katie was sleeping in Bill's recliner in the front room. Her sleeper was on the couch and she only had on a diaper and was covered with a blanket. The sitter (who is wonderful and we love) said that Katie started throwing herself against the glass sliding window in our dining room once she put the sleeper on her. We pulled the blanket back and she was red all over in this horrible rash. Okay, what kid is allergic to touching cinnamon. She did ingest some through the air, but she didn't eat any. What a nightmare.

She seemed fine this morning. She took a nice soapy bath and the teacher said that they won't do anymore projects with cinnamon! YIKES!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

This was our Halloween - Snow White & Scooby Doo -- quite the combination. Halloween was a disaster for Katie. I have determined that Autism and Halloween aren't a very good combination. Mary had a wonderful day. She woke up this morning and said, "Couldn't it be Halloween again today?" I said, "Thank goodness, No." Once was enough for this year.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

COULD SOMEONE PLEASE REMIND ME WHY WE HAVE TELEPHONES? It's just 8:30 in the morning and I have already had 5 phone calls - work, Katie's teacher, a solicitor, etc, etc. Yikes. I'm tired. I was supposed to work this morning - but they called at 6:30 (I was already showered and dressed) and said I didn't have to come in if I didn't want to---they are running behind on payroll -- so I said, "sure, I'll stay home". I have Katie's IEP (Individualized Education Plan) meeting this afternoon - I'm a little stressed about it - so it might be good to be home and get some work done here so that I am more relaxed for the meeting.

We went to Katie's AUTISM DOCTOR yesterday. I call her that because she is the only doctor we have found who will actually give us medications to try and detox Katie's body of the heavy metals. We started a series of B12 shots -- I have to administer the shot -- I did it in the office yesterday - and almost started crying - but amazingly Katie started talking yesterday. She said "on " three times - she said "daddy" twice, she said "hi" several times, and she said "I'm Katie!" last night. Yep-- I know it may be hard to believe but -- after reading Jenny McCarthy's book (see previous posts) and seeing how her son's vocabulary doubled on the days that he received B12 shots - I thought it was something that we had to try. Even after 1 day I am so glad that we did. This is a child whom I haven't heard say much of anything other than "Katie" on occasion for the past two months -- we'll see how it goes. The shots are every other day -- so no shot today - we'll see how tomorrow goes.

Monday, October 22, 2007

BIRTHDAY PICS - FINALLY! Only 8 days late! Sorry, Katie...Mommy has been a little busy. We did a cupcake birthday with ice cream cones this year. Katie loves ice cream - but only on a cone...and you know that cupcakes are all the trend this year :) She was sneaking the cupcakes off the counter all afternoon that day -- and was licking the frosting off. Pretty funny. Good thing Mommy made extras.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Things are going a little better - I think we are close to a resolution with Katie's classroom situation - so that is encouraging. They tried some different things today -- and they seemed to work. So that is good. I will upload Katie's b-day pics as soon as I have a few minutes.....

Wednesday, October 17, 2007


Yep, that's how I feel. Things have not been going well the last few days. It seems like this years has been very transitional as far as Katie goes. We knew it would be a difficult adjustment with new teachers, a new classroom and new classmates - in addition to now going to school all day rather than half a day -- but I never imagined it would be this difficult. I will refrain from elaborating about everything that has been going on, but I will just say that we are seeing a side of Katie that we have never seen before, and it is really difficult. We don't know why she is doing what she does, and I am beginning to realize that even though teachers/aides can teach your children and care for your children, we as parents are truly the only ones that love them - and when it comes to children with special needs, it seems that I wish I could transfer my parental love to them so that they could see what I see and feel what I feel. It's hard for a teacher to understand that my child can't tell me when she's having a bad day, or that she's got a sore throat or a tummy ache. It's always a big guessing game with Katie. I'm pretty good at it, but I'm not perfect (nor do I claim to be). I've cried about it too much today - so I'll move on for now.

On a brighter note, Mary is now reading at above a 3rd grade level (which is great for my big 1st grader). She is loving school and is really excelling in so many ways. It's awesome!!!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

I know it's been a few days...things have been busy. Lots going on with the girls, etc. Katie escaped her classroom through a window yesterday... yes, you read that correctly. The window had been left open and the screen was out of the window because of a portable air conditioner they had used the previous day (it had been 86 degrees). When the teacher/aides were occupied, she climbed up to the ledge and hopped out. I know it sounds crazy, but she has climbed out of the window at home before, so this isn't a completely foreign concept. She did it because it was raining that morning and even though the picture card on her daily schedule said "playground", they went to the gym instead. She was mad that she didn't get to go to the playground (her favorite place) - so she waited for the perfect opportunity when no one was looking and she hopped out and went directly to the playground. I'm actually pretty calm about it. I commend the teacher for calling me right away and letting me know what happened. In the classroom Katie was in last year, she got away for an extended period of time and I wasn't even called to be informed of what had happened - so this is an improvement. It's all part of loving Katie -- who by the way will be 5 on Sunday - that is hard to believe. My baby is turning the big 5!!

Saturday, September 29, 2007

I feel compelled to write a little about vaccinations and how I personally feel about vaccinating children. The reason being that several of you have contacted me regarding my recent posts - stating that you have chosen not to vaccinate your children. In my personal opinion - and please remember, this is my opinion, I am not a doctor :) -- you need to continue to vaccinate your children, you just need to be smart about it. This means not allowing your 3 month old baby to have 4 or 5 shots at one time. This means spreading out your child's shots. Talk to your pediatrician. Even though they will never agree that vaccines can cause autism or can be harmful neurologically to your child, most will be willing to work with you to spread the vaccines out and make them "safer " for your child. I am definitely still a "pro-vaccine" parent - I just believe that as parents we need to be educated in the decisions we make about vaccinations. There is a great book called "Evidence of Harm" that is all about vaccines and what is in them and why as parents of children with autism, many of us believe that vaccinations have played a role in the autism. It talks a lot about "one size fits all vaccines" that do not take the childs weight and size into consideration -- and if you are considering skipping vaccinations with your children, I would strongly suggest that you read this book.

We still vaccinate our children - and I still remind my friends that there is a greater risk by not vaccinating your child than be vaccinating them or by vaccinating them on a 'smarter' schedule. If I can help you find the information you need - please let me know - I would be happy to. I am the parent of a child with autism, and I would not wish autism on any child, or on any family -- but I still think children need to be vaccinated - we just need to see some changes in the vaccine schedule.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

This link is an add in today's USA Today which coincides with the release of Jenny McCarthy's new book Louder Than Words. Check it out.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Why does it seem that weeks go by at a time before I get back to this blog? It is the 4th week of school already. That alone is hard to believe. There is a lot to keep me busy - even with the girls in school all day. I never realized how much I wasn't getting done until I had the time to do it :)

Katie is recovering from an ear infection (common to have lots of them in autistic children). Thankfully she is responding well to the antibiotics and she is in school. Mary received a note home today that she has already benchmarked all of the first quarter reading requirements for 1st grade. I would hope so considering that she is reading everything she can get her hands on. Bill and I are thrilled that she has taken so easily to reading. Bill & I are both avid readers, so it is nice to know that we have passed that on to her at an early age.

I just finished Jenny McCarthy's new book "Louder than Words" - after seeing her on Oprah I just had to get my hands on it. Once you get past her use of some fine 4 letter words, it really is a great book. It's funny - I remember watching her on MTV years ago - and now she is this mom who is fighting for her child's life -- it just shows you that autism can touch anyone - and that being a mother of a child with autism is really all about deciding that you are going to fight for this child. I was really moved by her dedication to Evan - and her desire to help mothers find the best options for their children.

Well, I'm tired - I have caught a cold from Bill & the girls. It seems I am always the last to get sick - so when they all are feeling better, I am crawling into bed.....


Monday, September 17, 2007

A week has passed and things have calmed down a bit Now I'm not stressed - just tired. The weekends seem to fly by so quickly - we had an activity every night last week - after awhile it's like "Okay, I just need to stay home one night" :) Anyway, I think this week is going to be a little less hectic. We have the open house for Mary and Katie's school on Thursday... they, especially Mary, seem to be excited.

Here are some new pics too - some from soccer - I'll try to get some better ones. Yes, she's orange again this year -- yikes - I was hoping for something a little calmer! Katie's pic is in her Clifford hat that they made at school. It makes me laugh because she usually won't wear anything on her head, but she loves the Clifford hat! is doing wonders for her :)

Monday, September 10, 2007

Can you say "STRESSED OUT" - For those of you who know me, have lived with me, gone to school with me, etc, you know that I am a creature of stress - and in my adult life I have continued to be a pretty stressed-out person. I attribute a lot of that to my personality, but especially in the last 5 years I think it has stemmed from my difficult pregnancy with Katie and her resulting autism diagnosis.
If you have never lived with an autistic child I will just tell you that there is no good way to describe it. It is a 24/7/365 job - it is constant, unrelenting and at times, physically and emotionally draining. Bill & I live in a constant state of tiredness, although I do for the most part get a lot more sleep than I did in college. We are 24 hour policemen, security guards, fire-fighters, cooks, maids, butlers, chauffeurs - like a lot of parents - just to a different level. I live in a "Katie-proofed" home - but it is far from stress-free. The fear of having her escape the house to run away and never again be heard from is a real life daily fear and struggle.
We are thrilled to have this new class at school for Katie. I think the all-day class will be good for her - and good for me. With the way my work schedule is set up I will usually have 2 weekdays at home without kids to get things done. My house (theoretically) will be clean and thus my stress levels should drop.
Well stress equals tired and sleepy - so I should probably go...lots of pictures to post tomorrow. Good Night.

Friday, September 07, 2007

This is so weird - it's 10am - my house is clean (I've even shampooed -- sp?- my carpets - surfed facebook, done the laundry, dishes, etc) - and it's staying clean. Yes, the girls are both at school and I don't work until tonight. This is a weird feeling that I will have to get used to. I need to go to the grocery store this afternoon - and get caught up on all of the things I had fallen behind with while I was working full-time and while the girls were home all day. This is a weird feeling - but one I can probably get used to. :) The only problem is I tend to miss them by lunch time --- LOL!

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

From the pictures you can tell that Mary was a little more excited about it than Katie. Poor Kate - she didn't even want to get on the bus -- but once she saw her busdriver and aide and realized that this was an "ok" thing - she got on. Mary on the other hand was super excited and was ready to go see all of her friends and meet her new teacher. Now I have the whole day off to clean my house, run errands - and of course, stop into school and see how Katie is doing in her new classroom. I am hopeful that this is going to be a great year for both of the girls.

Sunday, September 02, 2007


I must say that today I have gained a new perspective on a lot of things, and I just felt like I needed to share.

I guess it hasn't all happened today, but it seems as though I have realized once again how precious life is and how much I love Bill and the girls. A wonderful woman whom I went to Moody with was just recently diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer. She has two young daughters and a husband (whom I also knew at Moody). I have been so touched by how many MBI'ers have come together (with much thanks to modern technology and the internet) and are praying for them and rallying around them. It's really amazing to me that even when you have not been in touch for a long time that there is something about the bond of being a child of God and knowing His love and knowing right now that they need a huge outpouring of HIS love and healing - and knowing that He will give it to them. It is the love and comfort that we all know is there everyday, but seems to meet us right at our point of need when the situation arises.

On a much lighter note, when I came home from work tonight I was so blessed to see that my wonderful husband of 10 years now had cleaned the basement playroom which had pretty much turned into a disaster and I was seriously dreading having to make it my first project to tackle once the girls were back in school. Thanks, Bill. I love you!

School starts in 36 hours. Yee-haaaah!!!! All day, both girls, wow! I'm feeling old.

Monday, August 27, 2007

The power came back on early Sunday morning. Hallelujah! I was beginning to lose it! Enough said about that - but we are back in the land of the light!

My new focus of my "free" time (ha ha) other than trying to get my book about autism started - which hasn't happened yet- is trying to reconnect with old friends from the past - especially college. I have a friend from Moody that got me hooked into "facebook" and that has actually helped me a lot... When I was in college I was always the one that kept everyone connected to each other - I kept track of everyone's whereabouts and was kind of the "yellow pages" of our friendship circle. It's funny when I think about it now, because that is just who I was. I did that for YEARS after we were out of school. (Part of this was due to the fact that I was friends with a lot of guys - moreso than with girls - and because I was the GIRL - it was almost logical that I be the one to keep everyone connected. ) Now I have started doing it again. It's almost weird. I've been out of college for 15 years and all of the sudden I feel this urge to find out where my old friends are - are they married, do they have kids, where do they live, etc? This can be a difficult task, especially when they move all over the country, change e-mail addresses without telling anyone, etc. I have one "friend" in particular right now whom several people are trying to get ahold of and all I can say is - "that number is not listed at this time" - I know, I'm crazy. But it is entertaining - and with my unlimited long distance - it can be really fun to chat on the phone with someone I haven't talked to in 5 years. I'll keep you posted on my findings :) And, if you are a long lost college friend of mine, please let me know (LOL).

Friday, August 24, 2007


I am getting really tired of this weather. We have no power. Horrific storms came through here yesterday - almost seemed "hurricanish" as they were coming through. Power lines are snapped all over the place and there are trees (big ones) down all over, too. We lost power at supper time yesterday (Thursday) and are being told that we may not receive power back until Sunday night at Midnight. Yikes. It is not a real problem to not have power - more of an inconvenience --but autism and no electricity don't go very well together. Katie doesn't understand why she can't watch her videos. Telling her that the TV is broken doesn't mean anything to her. That is where it gets difficult. You can't explain anything to her, or reason with her. It is very black and white - either she can watch her videos or she can't -- no in between....and there is no way to explain to her why she can't watch them.
We are actually at my parents house tonight. Bill is in a wedding tomorrow. We had a sitter and were supposed to be going to the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner together - but with no power we couldn't leave a sitter at the house with the here we are, using the computer and doing the laundry - and Katie is soaking up all the videos she can :) It's almost kind of funny - like we don't realize how much we use electricity until it isn't available. Oh well, Bill says we can pretend to be roughing it in the U.P. It's kind of joke because he knows how much I hate "roughing it" and that camping is not one of my chosen activities ....

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Katie's new teacher came for a home visit yesterday. That was really nice. Katie took to her right away. My only concern is once again that the school system isn't setting her up for success. We've had all these meetings to get this new AI classroom set up and as of yesterday it still seemed as though the new teacher hasn't been given all of the resources she needs to get things done. She doesn't even have all the names of the children who will be in the class. It's only frustrating because (and for those of you who have read my blog for awhile know) it seems like we always have little snafu's that keep things from happening as they should. The good news this time is that the teacher is awesome - I am just concerned that they aren't giving her everything she needs....

I'm tired today - stressed a little I guess. Two weeks 'til school and I can't wait. They both need it so badly. .. and so do I. I'm looking forward to drinkng my latte' and cleaning my house. Isn't that pathetic? :)

Friday, August 17, 2007

I know that I haven't written very much about the new classroom that Katie is going to be in this year - but I am really excited about it. Her new teacher called yesterday and is going to come do a home visit next week to get to know Katie. I think that will be great. She sounds wonderful and is really into these AI Kids - and it was reassuring to know how focused she is on their safety - especially after the issues with Katie running away last year. She said that she is used to kids with elopement issues (running away) and that she is totally focused on keeping the kids safe. That was a huge relief for me. As much as I want Katie to learn, she also needs to be safe in her classroom - otherwise I am not able to focus on work or other things that I need to do while she is in school. Last spring I went through about 2 weeks of being so stressed out on trying to keep Katie safe at school that it about drove me through the roof. I couldn't sleep and I just wanted to scream -- I don't want that to happen again - so this is reassuring for me.

It's starting to cool down here. The girls are still enjoying the pool, but for the first time in awhile, it is almost too cold to swim in the morning. I love it.

Well, I need to run - lots to do before work this afternoon...

Monday, August 13, 2007

Well my best intentions of starting that book have yet to materialize. It's always one thing or another it seems. I am hoping that once school starts and I have a day or two a week to myself that it will be a different story and I can actually get going on it.

Three weeks til school starts - that for me is hard to believe. We aren't ready. Not even close. I need to buy both of the girls shoes and clothes and all that good stuff. We've done bookbags and lunch sacks, but that's about it. With both girls being in school all day this year, it will be a real change for us as a family. It's awesome though. Katie will be in her new classroom for the AI kids aged 3-6 and then Mary will be in the big 1st grade. Yee-hah!!

Thursday, August 09, 2007

I think that I have decided to start writing a book about my experiences with autism. I'm not really sure how I have arrived at this conclusion, but I have always enjoyed writing - and since autism is such a huge part of my life and the life of my family, I thought that maybe this would be a good way to take a lot of what has happened in our lives. I am thankful that I started blogging almost two years it will provide a lot of information to help me with the book. I'll keep the blog updated with the progress of my writings. I thought maybe I'd try and get started today.....

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

THERAPY...didn't go very well today. I don't think Katie was feeling very well and she was so crabby. She cried and cried and was fussy. It wasn't good. It has been a really hard couple of days. She hasn't been herself for a few days. But that is the way autism is. It's really difficult sometimes to know what to do...

We have therapy again tomorrow -- so we'll see how that goes. I'm praying for the best. I really can't wait for school to start. Katie needs it so desperately. She needs the routine on a daily basis. That's an autism thing. She's doing a little better tonight..

more later...

Monday, July 30, 2007

I am adding a new link to my visited sites listing. Dr. James Dobson has a really good series on autism right now. You can listen to it online or download it as a podcast.
Dr. Dobson is very well known for his Biblical based child rearing advice and has invited some physicians to talk about new therapies and options for children with autism.

Friday, July 27, 2007

CEDAR POINT....was awesome. I will (as usual) need to upload my pics...but we had a great time. It was a long day and we didn't get home until 2 in the am,...we are very tired. I am seriously impressed by how fearless Mary is. She wanted to ride everything! (Even things I didn't want to ride...and for me that says a lot!) A little later today I will post the pics.

Katie did extremely well. We were so pleased. She is really coming along so nicely. It is great to be able to take her places that we always thougt would be too much for her... She rode all the kiddie rides and actually even rode a few adult rides. It was so funny to see her excitement -- as she would bury her head in your shoulder when we rode rides (like the Woodstock express - kiddie coaster) that she wasn't sure of...but overall she had a great time. Now if Mommy, Daddy, Grandpa and Pat can recover, we'll be all set.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

I've changed the main blog pictures. The one of our family (top right) is at the same location as last year - The Robert Wadlow statue in Alton, IL. He was the tallest living man in the world and was from Alton. We try to take pictures there each year to see how the girls have grown.

Here are a few new pics from vacation....

Monday, July 23, 2007

We're back from the first part of our vacation -- I can't wait to upload my pictures - but that will have to wait until sometime tomorrow. It's 1:30 in the am and we've only been home a few minutes. So much awesome stuff happened. Katie learned how to swim!! It was so exciting. She's only 4 and she can tread water like a fish. It is awesome. Mary had a much harder time and wasn't comfortable until she was a few months shy of with Katie's autism we are thrilled and relieved that she is at least beginning to understand how to swim.

The family reunion was good - not a very good turn out this year - but the faithful few were there. My cousin Jason and his wife Mindy and son Logan were there. They are our pals. We did a lot of fun things including ice skating (not me -- but the first time for Mary. She did surprisingly well once we got the right size skates on her. She needed a 5 -- keep in mind she is only 6 -- YIKES!). Katie made a brief appearance on the ice - in CROCS! Also a YIKES as I had to head out onto the ice to "rescue" her. But overall it was excellent. We went to Six Flags St. Louis today - that was loads of fun. I hadn't been there since I was a child - so that was great. Mary loved it -- and actually Katie had a great time. She rode a lot of rides and actually did a great job waiting in line and eating in a restaurant. Bill & I were both pleasantly surprised at how well things went with her. We have decided that we will probably need to rent a stroller when we go to Cedar Point -- it will be a longer day at a bigger park with tons of walking - and she was pretty pooped out after only 6 hours at a smaller park.

Well I'll do my best to upload my pics when I get up later this a.m. -- I'll post the good ones here on my blog :)

Monday, July 16, 2007

The weekend flew by a little more quickly than expected. We are now hustling around with lots to do....haircuts, Mary's cast is coming off, shopping, oil changes, work ...the list is ongoing. I'm happy to be part-time and have a little more time to accomplish things :)

Potty training is coming along nicely. I probably should take some pictures of big-girl Katie sitting on the potty. We are so thrilled that she is wearing big girl panties and using the toilet. Many people told us she would be 6 or 7 before we could potty train her. She will not be 5 until October -- so that is awesome.

2 more days until the cast comes off -- don't worry, I'll take pictures.

I'm tired today...Katie always wakes up as soon as the sun rises...regardless of what time Mommy got home from work :)

Have a good day.

Friday, July 13, 2007

For those of you with whom I talk to on a regular basis, you already know that I started my new job as a "part-timer" this week. I'm still at Kohl's, but only on a part-time longer a manager. To be honest it has been nice to have a little more time with the girls, and an ounce of time for myself.

Only 5 days until Mary's cast comes off. I can't wait (and neither can she :) Hopefully it is healing up well and we won't have any further issues.

Well a part-timer :) I have been home all day, but need to go in for a few hours this I had better start getting ready. I'm looking forward to a nice relaxing weekend....

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Today is our 10th wedding anniversary. That is hard for me to believe. The years have literally flown by. When I look back at all that has happened over the past 10 years I find it so amazing to see where we have been and where God has brought us.

I took the day off work and Bill is coming home early. We have a sitter and we are planning to do dinner and an IMAX movie ---a real treat for us since with Katie we don't tend to get out very much!!

The other bonus is that the weather has cooled off so much here that it is beautiful out. High of 75 today -- no more of that 97 business (but the girls do love the pool :)

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

So, I couldn't figure out why Katie was a little crab this afternoon. She loves to swim -- and I mean LOVES -- usually she is standing at the slider door waiting desperately to get into the pool, but today that wasn't the case. I even had my swimsuit on (miracle) and Mary and I were in the pool, but Katie just stood at the slider crying and trying to open the door to get back into the house. I guess she was tired. I should have known. She had both Occupational and Speech Therapy this morning -- and for some reason she was up in the middle of the night crying her eyes out. I went in and changed her and she calmed back down, but needless to say, the "bug" is pooped out. She been asleep almost 4 hours now. She probably won't sleep tonight! Yikes!

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Well the 4th of July flew by faster than expected. I had to work in the morning and then we went to Bill's dad's on the lake so the girls could swim and then do fireworks. It was a good day. I'm off today -- much needed to get the house in order and catch up on some much needed mommy time with the girls.

I'm glad to be blogging again. It's nice to look back and see what has been going on. I am thrilled with Katie's recent progress. The pool seems to be good therapy for her as well. She would spend all day out there if we would let her. It's hard in the summer because she only has her two therapy sessions a week at the hospital. The school doesn't have anything structured for the AI kids (Autistic) in the summer... which personally I think is a shame. These kids need structure so badly. We try to give her as much structure at home as we can -- but the routine and schedule that school gives her is really the best option.

I recently joined facebook...that has been kind of fun. I am finding a lot of old friends from college which has been a nice treat....

Monday, July 02, 2007

We finally broke down and bought a pool. The girls love it - but it is still ice cold, and I think they are crazy for wanting to swim in it. Thank-goodness Mary has a swimmable cast or we couldn't have gotten the pool yet. Two more weeks to go in the hard cast and then hopefully she can wear a removable one .
This is my last week of being full-time at work. I am so excited to go part-time. I am looking forward to having more time with the girls - especially now with the pool because they just love to hang out all day outside.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Can you believe she is allowed to swim in it? Casts have come a long way since I was a child, but I am really happy for her. It's a hot summer and it's been hard for her to not be able to swim :)

Monday, June 25, 2007

Mary's garden is producing hot peppers like there is no tomorrow. She is loving it! The garden is almost outgrowing the small space that we have fenced in for it.
We're hoping for a "pink, swimmable" cast on Wednesday, so when we get it I will be sure to post pics.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Okay, so I know that everyone thinks I've stopped blogging -- but I'm back!!! It has been a crazy few months and there is a lot to catch up on...but I'll have to spread it out over a few days :)

The latest and greatest is that Mary broke her arm on June 1st with one week of school to go. She is in a huge cast and the hope is that it is off for our vacation plans in July. This is a recent pic of Mary with her cast standing in front of her garden - which is her new project this year. It is doing awesome with all of the super hot days we have had.

Katie is doing well. She has received a new therapy bike courtesy of "Gram-moo" and Papa -- she is so cute on it - and it is helping her a lot already. Her pic is on her new bike right after she got it.
I am going to be going part-time at work after being full-time again for almost 2 years. I am really looking forward to the flexibility of scheduling this will give us -- and it will also allow me to have more time with Bill and the girls.
Bill is really busy at work. Summer is flying by already. He has his motorcycle up and running again -- and he is riding it to work almost every day. He loves riding it and it gets great gas mileage... so after a few years of pleading with me to get it insured and licensed, he is cruising around on the bike!
More to come, soon! Glad to be back!

Friday, March 23, 2007

Spring is finally here! Yee-hah!! It has been a long cold winter in Michigan, and the girls are itching to be outside. Especially Mary... I need to take some pics of her riding her "big-girl" bik with no training wheels. She looks like she's been riding forever! We measured her height a few days ago, (compared to Mama's) and she comes up to the base of my neck.... She about 4'6" and she's only 6 years old!! Yikes!!!!

Katie's doing well. She continues to make drastic growth and improvement while on her chelation therapy. She is learning to communicate without words by "leading" us with her arm or by bringing us her diaper when she needs to be changed. She does use the potty on a somewhat regular basis -- as long as we are the ones initiating it.

Bill & I are both continuing to be super busy with's that time of year. Not much else to report...I'll try to get some new pics up soon!!!

Friday, March 09, 2007

Well, I think winter might finally be breaking -- it has been so cold and snowy lately. Yuck!! It was 50 degrees today - a heatwave of sorts. It was a nice break from the cold. I need the weather to warm up so that we can wash the van and vaccuum out the inside -- I need a break from winter!

The girls are good. KATIE SAID TWO NEW WORDS THIS WEEK - "No" and "Poop" - both in appropriate context. :) Too funny! She is doing so well. We are just thrilled with her progress.

Mary is loving school and is enjoying life as only a 6 year old can. She has two very loose top front teeth -- I have a feeling the tooth fairy will be returning soon......

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Per usual, I am short on time - but I finally was able to upload the Father Daughter dance pics. Things here are good, but hectic. Bill and I both have lots of changes going on at our work-places, so it keeps us hopping!!!

Katie is starting to make excellent progress and is beginning to use words, it's so exciting!!

Mary has a 'boyfriend' - I'm not sure we're ready for that -- but more later..enjoy the pics!

Sunday, February 11, 2007

I know that I am way past due for a post, but as we have discussed before, I will not apologize for the craziness in my life. We are doing well - just really busy. Mary and Bill had their first father daughter dance last night. I'll try to upload some pics later today. Right now I am rushed for time. It's my mom's birthday and we are meeting them for Chinese - but I am sitting here in pj's with hair color in my hair - waiting for that to be done so I can get dressed and get on the move. It seems as though it is a never-ending cycle as of late -- but all in all we are good.

Mary is doing well in school - she continues to be the toothless wonder -- losing teeth like crazy - but is loving it. She is tying her shoes and reading -- it's awesome to watch her grow up.

Katie continues to be responding well to treatments. She is beginning to use more words and is having meaningful play with toys-- both of those are huge for her.

Bill is liking his new position as harbor master a lot -- he is back doing the things he loves -- parts, moving boats, etc. They are getting ready for the big Boat Show in GR this week - so he is nuts right now. Valentines week is always crazy for us because that is always the week of the boat show.

NASCAR is back -- lovin it!!! I always look forward to the return of NASCAR season. See my link to #8 for more info!!!

Well, I'll try to get those pics up later......

Friday, January 26, 2007

Well the weather is cold here -- and winter is in full swing -- plus I have a house full of "sicko's" too - so it really feels like winter. I was really sick yesterday -- and now both of the girls - especially Mary - are not feeling well. Mary is burning up with a fever and a bad cough - she stayed home from school. I've been trying to disinfect the house so that Bill doesn't get sick. He has so much going on at work.

Not too much else going on. Mary lost another tooth - and Katie is starting to say more words - it's awesome! We're all as busy as ever! More later....

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Do you ever feel like you don't have enough time to do all the things you need to do. I have been feeling especially crazy lately when it comes to getting things done. Between work, the house, the girls - it is a neverending cycle. School is back in full swing - Katie is thriving - continuing to say new words, eat new foods and she is truly a joy to me --- Mary is doing well also - the happy kindergartner tying her shoes, learning to ride a bike without training wheels (which is a trick in the ice and snow :) )

Bill, too, is staying busy with the new line of Hobie's and Hobie cats at the marina. Considering it's 12 degrees outside, the marina is suprisingly steady.

Not much else to report. I'm off for a haircut and then I need to take Katie to her speech therapy. It's always exciting to see how she's progressing ----

Friday, January 12, 2007

Okay, well I finally gave in and converted my blog from Beta to Google, so I am back. The holidays were crazy - but I will refrain from apologizing for not being faithful to my blogging family.

We are doing great - especially Katie -- she is starting to talk -- which is a huge answer to prayer -- and so encouraging for us. She has said her name three or four times this week -- which is amazing -- it brings tears to my eyes everytime she says it. I am hopeful that we can do another round of medication the end of this month as it seems to be making a huge difference for her.

Mary lost her first tooth over break and has three more that are loose. She also learned how to tie her own shoes - thanks to "grammo" who spent a whole afternoon patiently teaching her (thanks, mom!).

The Christmas craziness is finally waining at work - so my life is getting back to normal. Bill is back to work after a two week shutdown - which was great as he got to spend a lot of time with the girls.

We have decided to go to Disneyworld this summer - I am so excited!!! We went in 2005 -- but the girls are at a better age now --especially Katie - we are hoping to have a blast.

More later -- lots to do today!