Friday, September 4, 2015

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Monday, August 31, 2015


I love this boy and his love for golf, Star Wars, fencing, Legos, history, and books.  He is one in a billion!  Have a great first full week of school, Bubs!

Saturday, August 29, 2015

I'm a Little Tea Pot

I took some props with us when we went for our family pictures.  I am so glad I did!  I love the way these sweet tea set pictures turned out.  The tea set was a special gift from Abby's Nina, so I'm happy to have it in some of our pictures.

Friday, August 28, 2015

100 Days!!!

Just 100 more days until Abby's magical trip to Disney World!  Elsa, here she comes!!  

Abby's Grammy made her this beautiful dress, so of course we wanted to get pictures of Queen Elsa in her gown!

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Summer Recap

This guy started school yesterday and is now officially a 3rd grader!  I don't know how this happened, since I'm only 22, but... :)  He had a great day, and he is very happy to have some good friends in his class.  He also really enjoyed getting to know his teacher.  The highlight?  Finding out that he could check TWO books out at a time from the library!  Woo hoo!!  :)

To recap the summer a bit and say goodbye to sleeping in...oh wait, wrong house...I thought I'd share the highlights!

Caleb went to three day camps this summer.  First, attended space camp at our local community college and was really intrigued by all he learned.  Then, he went to a wonderful theater and music camp held at our church.  It was amazing how much those kids learned in just a week!  At the end of the summer, he attended a fencing camp run by one of his fencing instructors.  All fencing, all day!  It doesn't sound very interesting to me, but he loved it and learned a lot.  He has definitely found his thing!

Abby went to her first day camp too!  She attended a 1/2 day camp run by our local therapeutic recreation department, and she absolutely loved it!  There were only 3 kids with 2 adults, so they got tons of attention!  They ended the week with a fun pool party.

While we didn't do a big trip this summer in preparation for our awesome Disney trip in December, we did get away for a few days to Lancaster.  Our sweet friends graciously invited us to stay with them, and the kids had such a great time playing.  We took the kids to Dutch Wonderland, which is the perfect place for Abby.  Caleb may be getting a little old for it, but at least we squeezed out one more trip.

Matt traveled to Atlanta with the youth for a unique missions trip.  They learned about various cultures, and even visited a mosque and Hindu temple!  The group ran kids' clubs while they were there.  It really stretched everyone's thinking and helped them to consider different cultures.  He also went to Indiana for their annual youth conference.

Unlike past years, I did not teach any classes for the ESOL department this year.  We have one starting next Monday and I taught one over the winter, so we decided to take the summer off.  I'll be busy soon though!  

Instead, I continued my study of pediatric orthopedics and pulmonary medicine at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia!  Abby had her 15th surgery at the beginning of August and did very well. I learn new things every time we have a surgery because something comes up.  This time, my focus was on pleural effusion and how to keep my daughter safe from over-zealous residents.  Abby has bounced back from this surgery and is now at the same level she was before surgery.  She is still on precautions and will be for another 2 weeks, so we have to be careful until then. 

In between all of these adventures, we had the typical physical therapy, feeding therapy, speech, and medical appointments.  I tried to avoid "the summer slide" by doing learning activities with the kids as often as I could.  I can't say we did it every day, but they definitely worked hard.  Abby now has about 20 of her kindergarten sight words down pat, as well as recognizing the names of people in her extended family.  We are working on sounding out and blending words.  Caleb has a good foundation in multiplication now and is doing really well with telling time.  He is SUCH an incredible reader and loves to learn new things (just not necessarily the things I'm trying to teach him at the time!  Lol!)  He is reading 6th grade level books and flying through them, comprehending every little detail.  I can't wait to see how he takes off as he transitions in 3rd grade from "learning to read" to "reading to learn."  

Farewell, Summer 2015!  You were busy, filled with fun, and much too short.  Come back soon!!

Friday, August 21, 2015

The Routine

It is sooo hard for me to find time to blog again after we get home from a hospital stay!  I have so much to do with the house, Abby needs extra care, we are going to appointments, I'm making up for lost time with Caleb, work has started up mind is racing!

Thank you all for checking in on us and asking about Abby.  She is doing well.  Recovery is a little slower this time, and she is still needing medicine most every day.  The VEPTR pushed one rib out really far, so Dr. C. had to break it and refit it.  That spot has been very painful for Abby and is sensitive to even the slightest touch.  Imagine the pain she had yesterday when a dog (not one we knew) suddenly jumped on her and knocked her down!  It was an Oxy night for sure last night.

She's pretty much back to eat the way she was before surgery now, although we are still doing a gtube feed at night for extra calories.  I'm hoping to be able to wean that soon as she eats a little more. Abby has also discovered she likes bacon!  For the first time ever, we regularly have bacon frying on the stove in our house.  Whatever Abby will eat, she can have!  Matt and Caleb are thrilled with this new development.  :)

We went to PT for the first time on Wednesday.  I gave her pain meds right before and she did great!  Our PT was so impressed with how well she did.  Besides the jumping, which she isn't allowed to do for 6 weeks, she's basically back to where she was before.  Her muscles are a little tight from being in bed for a while, but she is looking pretty good.

There is STILL no word on pre-k.  My friend's daughter at another school got her letter yesterday, so I'm hoping we will hear something soon.  I've been totally stalking our mail lady.  If Abby does get in, we need to quickly schedule a meeting to revise her IEP (it is currently written as if she is only getting speech and PT on an outpatient basis, not as a student in a classroom), and I also need to meet with all of the nursing staff to create her medical plan.  None of this can be done until she is officially a student.  Come on people!  Time is ticking away!!

So that's what has been going on here.  I'll try to be better with updates!  I have new family pictures to post too!!!