Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Random Pictures

Some pictures need no explanation..........some just cannot be explained. 



Tuesday, March 30, 2010

New Glasses

Rachel got her new glasses yesterday.  She had outgrown her first pair and got a new prescription a few weeks ago, so we started shopping for some new ones.  We got her new glasses from a really cool company that makes glasses just for people with Down syndrome.  Due to the special features of their face, it is harder to get glasses to stay up on their noses.  These glasses were designed to address that problem.. They seem to fit really well and she looks so much more grown up with her big girl glasses.  The old pair she was wearing were actually made for infants!

Spring Cleaning

I have wanted to get some spring cleaning done this week.  The girls are home from school for spring break, and the schedule is pretty wide open, but I just cannot get motivated.  Apparently Rachel is in the mood, though.  She took it upon herself to clean out the refrigerator yesterday while I was upstairs
picking up the girls' rooms.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

How To Waste An Afternoon

I thought I would run a couple of errands this afternoon.  I needed to go to Target to pick up a prescription, so I thought I would get a few things while I was there, and Mike asked me to pick up some motor oil for him.  Easy enough, right?  Okay, so I got to Target.  I picked up the things I needed.  I almost forgot to go by the pharmacy to pick up the meds, but fortuantely, I did remember before I walked out of the store.  So....I got there and said I needed to pick up a prescription.  The pharmacist said that there was not one filled for me.  I started to get miffed, thinking, "You guys do this to me every time!"  Then I suddenly remembered that I did not call in a refill, because there were no refills left on the last prescription.  I had gotten a script from the doctor about a month ago to get filled when I ran out, and guess what?  I had not given them the new script!  So I started to fumble through my purse, embarrassed and flustered, looking for the new script.  It was not to be found.  I figured it must be at home on the counter somewhere.  I went on a ran another errand and went home to find the script.  It was nowhere to be found.  I went back to the car and started pilfering through my purse again.  I found my watch that had been missing for almost a year!  And much to my relief (and dismay), the script.  I had had it the whole time!!!  Back I went to the store (oh yeah, I had forgotten to get the oil Mike had asked me to get!), gave them them the script and went to get the oil Mike had asked me to pick up.  Guess what!  Target did not have the right oil.............Back to the pharmacy I went.  I picked up the meds and headed over to Walmart.  It took some searching, and at times I thought I might be remembering the numbers wrong, but I found the right oil.  After spending three hours running back and forth to the store, I had the medication and the motor oil!  Woohoo!  On the way home I forgot to stop by the bank for about the third time and had to turn around and go back to deposit some checks that I had been riding around for about a week.  Sometimes I wonder how I make it through a day!!  On a positive note, I got all my running around finished before the severe weather hit! 

Friday, March 26, 2010

Spring Has Arrived

Two weekends ago, Leah decided she wanted to try to get in the pool.  Can you say COLD?   She did not stay in more than a few minutes.  She was the first in for the year, though.  The last few days have been a little warmer, so maybe the pool will start to warm up soon. 

 



Cookie is adjusting to his new surroundings.  He is a really sweet little dog and has been very good.  About the only thing he does that he is not supposed to do is try to nibble food from the table........oh yeah, and actually get on the table if a chair is left pulled out!  We will have to break that habit soon.



Grandpa and Mary Jane came down last weekend.  It was a short visit, but we had a nice lunch out together and enjoyed sitting out on the back porch visiting in the warmer temps.  Mary Jane headed back up to Wisconsin on Tuesday.  We were glad to get to see with her before she had to go back home.  I wish we could talk Grandpa into visiting longer when he comes down!  (hint, hint!!)

 

This week the girls decided we needed to have a spring party.  One evening they dressed up, made party favors, and organized party games.  The party was actually sillier than the costumes, if you can believe that! Rachel thinks that the limbo requires you to fall down when you go under the bar.  I guess that doesn't say much for the limbo talent we have in our family!


Yesterday Rachel's class had their field day.  What chaos!!!!  Grades K-3 participated and they paraded through the crowd of 4-6 graders carrying their classroom banner.  That was really cute.  The kids loved the cheers from the crowd of big kids.  They  had a great time and the weather was perfect! 



Just had to get this picture.  During lunch yesterday, I got to see one of Rachel's new skills.  Here she is opening her own milk carton!  Funny the things that I can get excited about!  Yay.....you go girl!  She is growing up. 

Monday, March 15, 2010

Cookie Is Ours!

Well, we made it over to the dog rescue on Saturday and we were approved to adopt the dog!  We are now the proud owners of Cookie.  He is smaller than I thought and looks more like a poodle than I expected, but he seems like a very sweet dog.  He slept in the crate most of the way home-which was about a two hour ride.  When we got home he hung out with the girls in the yard for bit before we loaded him back into the car to go we pick up Mike from the airport. (He thought he was coming home on Sunday, but he was just confused with all the time change, and he arrived back in Florida about 7:00pm Saturday)  This time we let Cookie just ride in the seat with the girls.  Mike's flight was delayed about 30 minutes, so we had to hang out in the car for almost an hour.  Cookie did not mind a bit.  He crawled up in the front seat and napped off and on, occassionally getting up to see who was walking by the car.  He did great back at home, with the exception of dinner time.  He just couldn't help himself and was constantly putting his front feet on the table edge or someone's lap.  At bedtime, he went into his crate without any problem.  Mike did have to get up and move the crate away from the window, because Cookie would occasionally growl and bark when he looked out.  After moving him, though, all was quiet and he slept through the night.  Yesterday, we gave up on trying to keep Cookie away form the table while we ate and put him in his crate during meals.  The crate is in the kitchen, but once you put him in it, he will just lie down and go to sleep, which is really cool.  He gets really excited and barks like crazy when he sees the cat, and he will bark when he thinks he sees something outside, but so far he has been really great.  He loves the kids, and they are so excited to have a dog that will come up to them and ask for attention.  The dog we got from the shelter a few weeks ago did not want to have anything to do with them,and ended up biting Allison in the face, so he went back to the shelter.  Now if we can just get the cat and dog used to each other we will be set!  I introduced them to each other for a little bit this morning.  Needless to say, the dog was over the top excited and quivering with anticipation.  The cat was not  at all amused.  The cat did not freakout, but he was none to happy about it. 
     

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Another Cancelation

The week continues to be slow, and I actually was productive today.  I made it to the grocery store and got some house work done.  Yay me!!!!   It has been stormy all day, so Rachel's horseback riding was canceled.  I wish I had known all these things were not going to happen this week, so I could have looked forward to an easy week ;-)

Mike is still in Korea (that has also made for easier evenings because the girls do not care if I cook.....  actually, they prefer I don't and would rather eat frozen chicken nuggets and fries).  He says work is going good, but he caught a cold on the flight over and has been miserable with that all week.  He should be done with work as of today and heading back to Seoul on Friday to do a little sightseeing before he heads back home.  He is supposed to be home late Sunday night, I think.
  
The girls and I will be busy on Saturday, though.  After our unsuccessful adoption from the local shelter, we have been looking online at dogs in "local" rescues.  We have found one we think would be good for us, so we filled out the paperwork last week and got approval to adopt the first of this week.  We are driving over there on Saturday.  The little town is near Tampa and is about 130 miles from here, so we will be in the car for alot of the day.  If the person running the rescue thinks the dog likes us, we get to bring him home.  Silly, isn't it?!?  The girls are very excited about it, and I have to admit I am looking forward to meeting the little guy too.  He is much smaller than the dog Mike brought home and is a standard poodle mix instead of a pitbull mix.  It says he weighs about 30 pounds, is a very easy going dog and a good car rider, thank goodness.  I hope he turns out to be the right dog for us.  I don't think I want to go through another adoption disaster.  If this does not work, I will have to tell Mike we are done.  Below is a picture of the dog.  His name is Cookie.  I am not sure if we will keep that name or not. We certainly won't make the poor guy wear the bandanas anymore.
      

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

I Think I am Done Now

After about four complete makeovers, I think I have settled on the new look for the blog.  The first template was just too dark;  the second was too hard to read; the third just wasn't me.  I figured this fourth and final template was fitting.......what with the Keirnan Irish heritage and the clovers.  Not to mention, I really liked the green.  I have also played around with all kinds of things in the settings. In some cases I have learned something new, in other cases I may end up learning something new eventually, but often I just confused myself, so if you see something weird happening on the blog, just write it off as my inability to figure out this stuff.

Our week has been pretty laid back.  Allison is taking the FCAT this week.  It is the standardized test that the state uses to rate its schools.  Because of that, she has not had any homework.....yay!  That makes for much easier afternoons because the girls can go outside and play.  Rachel's speech therapy in Orlando was canceled Tuesday so we did not have to spend almost four hours in the car for the 30 minute session of speech.  After school, Rachel and I did go up to Titusville about 40 minutes north to order her some new eyeglasses.  This shop in Titusville sells the eyeglasses from Spec 4 Us.  These glasses are made just for people with Down Syndrome.  Since Rachel has such a flat nose, she has nothing for the glasses to sit on.  Specs 4 Us glasses take into account the shape of the face of a person with Down syndrome and work with it to give them glasses that don't constantly rest down on the end of their noses.  I cannot wait for her to get her new glasses.  It will take at least two weeks though. 

Today I was not needed at either school for my weekly day of volunteering, so I was able to come right back to the house after dropping the girls off.  I usually spend all morning at the schools, not getting home until after 1:00pm.  One would think that since I was back home by 8:30am, that I would be able to take advantage of this extra time and get some things down around the house, but one would be wrong.  Note the first paragraph of this blog to see how I so wisely spent my time!  We don't have anything except our usual school schedule and horseback riding for the rest of the week, so hopefully I will get motivated to do some housekeeping.

One last thing.........having a child with Down syndrome can lead to some moments of irony.  A couple of days ago, I walked into the living room and saw Rachel jumping on the couch.  As I heard the words, "Rachel, stop jumping on the couch!" come out of my mouth, it dawned on me that she was JUMPING!!!  Suddenly I was saying, "Rachel, was jumping on the couch, did you see that, she was JUMPING!!!  Rachel..do it again, do it again"  It is the first time I have ever seen her jump, despite the hours that PT has worked with her to try to teach her how.  She would not do it again, but maybe she will remember what it felt like and be able to do it again soon.  Funny, the things I take for granted with my older children.

Well, with my new settings, I do not seem to have spell check......what is up with that.  Sorry for any unintelligible (oh boy....is that spelled right?!?) words!! How could I not have spell check!  I can insert a jump break, but I cannot spell check.  I may have to go back to my old ways.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Check It Out

Yes, I have been playing with the blog. I am not sure I like it, but I really enjoy playing around with it. I love "creating" stuff, and it is even more fun when I feel that I have mastered some new feat of technology!

We have had an eventful week. We adopted a dog from the local shelter last Friday, but by noon on Saturday, the dog had attacked Allison, getting in some pretty good teeth marks to her nose, upper lip, upper gum and chin. Fortunately, she was not seriously injured! Needless to say, the dog had to go back to the shelter. We were all sad, but at the same time grateful that we had found out the true nature of the dog without anyone being seriously injured. Allison was very concerned about having to go to school on Monday with her face all scabbed over, but she did okay and has not seemed to be too concerned about it after she made it through the first day. The doctor put her on another round of antibiotics to try to ward off infection from the dog bite. Apparently, the new meds were not nearly as appealing as the last round was and we have had a difficult time getting Allison to take it!

Leah had to go back to the doctor on Monday for a strep test to see if the round of antibiotics she was on took care of the strep she had two weeks ago. The test came back negative, so she was good to go. She has spent the rest of the week being very emotional. I was wishing yesterday that we could rewind and get her out of the other side of the bed! She got up crying that I did not wake her up for breakfast. Not only did I wake her up, but we talked about her tortoise and the book she has been reading. I don't know how much more awake she is supposed to be to understand that it is time for breakfast, but when I went upstairs the second time to tell her it was time to get dressed, she has had a meltdown-BIGTIME! We had to go through it all again this morning-it was like the movie Groundhog Day. Starting the day off grouchy makes for a late start to school, and I was glad to drop her off these last two mornings!!

Rachel went to the ophthalmologist on Tuesday for her yearly recheck. Her prescription has gotten weaker-the doctor said it was expected as she she gets bigger, so she will be getting new glasses soon. I am trying to locate an office that sells frames from Specs 4 Us. Their glasses are specifically designed for children with Down syndrome and are supposed to fit better than the regular frames. Rachel has no nose bridge and needs all the help she can get. There are three doctors in the area that sell the frames. After calling one of them, I am finding that it will not be convenient to get to any of them, so I am just going to have to make one of them work for us. None of them are any closer that about 30 miles. Two are in Orlando near the speech therapist, so I might try to work out an appointment with one of them when I have Rachel in the area for speech therapy. That is, if I can get the repairs done by a local doctor in town. I cannot afford a trip over to Orlando every time Rachel takes off the glasses and throws them in the floor for someone to step on! I have lost count of how many times I have taken her glasses in to be straightened!

I am hoping that Rachel is well in the morning so that she can go to her gymnastics class. Last Friday night she was up all night throwing up, so I kept her home Saturday. The Saturday before, she appeared to be coming down with something so I kept her home because I figured she was coming down with the strep the two big girls had had. She turned out to be fine, so that was unnecessary. She loves to go to gymnastics so I know she will be glad to finally get to go in the morning. Mike will be leaving on Sunday to go to South Korea for a week. I guess the girls and I will make it a girls week, which is cool. That means that I can get through the week without having to really cook!

Hugs All Around!

video

This is how Rachel welcomes the girls home from school every day. She realy loves her big sisters.