Monday, March 29, 2010

Palm Sunday Pictures and an Update on Myra

These are a few of the pictures I snapped Palm Sunday.

Princess Pea showing off one of her favorite shirts and her new haircut....

Myra is now 6 months old and I have seen a huge improvement in her head control in just the last week! She can now hold herself up leaning against the couch for the most part and holds her head off her shoulders for minutes at a time. Good job, Myra!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Boo Boo....I think.....

As I was playing with Boo Boo's hair today, I noticed just how very long it was. I was joking with Princess Pea that I could put it up in pigtails and he could pass as a girl...

Actually, when I'm in public, most people address him as a little girl! Now, this was when his hair wasn't this long also. Boy clothes, boy shoes, boy coat...and they thought he was a girl! Very annoying to me. He's pretty, but not THAT pretty... But, I got the same dumb comments when Princess Pea was a few weeks old DECKED out in pink, even in a pink car seat with a pink blanket, and people would say, "Oh, he's so cute!" AHHH!! What is wrong with people? Do they seriously not take the extra two seconds to LOOK at a child they comment about...??

Anyway, tonight I decided that if I can't convince them, I would join them!

Boo Boo sporting an old dress I made for the girls...

He thought it was hilarious!
Daddy did not.

I loved when Princess Pea's hair was cute and short like this...LOL

Ok, Ok....I finally cut it! Daddy's happy now.
Wonder if they'll still call him a girl...probably...

I decided to get Princess Pea's cut for the spring, too.

I think this is the longest it's ever been! Pop Pop and Daddy like the long locks, but they also don't have to DO her hair every day. Her hair is thin and stringy like mine and just mattes and flattens over night. It also has a slight wave that gets corky when long. Anyway, it's getting warmer and I prefer it shorter. And I'm the Mama! Or, as Angelica Pickles puts it, "Mom's the BOSS!"

I'll post some cute spring photos this week with her hair done.
I love the bob on her!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Bowling with Uncle Isaac!

Uncle Isaac turns 33 today, and for his birthday he asked to take the kids bowling! Sid the Science Kid has gone once, but the girls have never been. It was a blast!

Angelica Pickle's feet were actually too small for a pair of shoes,
but after tears, she just wore some big ones.

Isaac teaching them how to bowl

All the kids had a combination of throwing/pushing to get the ball down.
And yes, there were bumpers!!

Princess Pea was bouncing off the walls excited when she bowled a few spares!

Sweet Miracle just slept the whole time!

Final scores: Isaac (62), Sid the Science Kid(68),
Princess Pea(67), Angelica Pickles(59)

Thanks Uncle Isaac for a day of fun memories!!
Happy Birthday!!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Adventures at the ER

Where is the quarter, Brynnan? "Right here."

So, Angelica little mischievous, third-born child...decided that the pizza at dinner was not enough to fill her tummy this evening. So, she decided to EAT a QUARTER! Goofball!

She came downstairs less than 30 minutes after going to bed and said, "Mommy, I ate something I wasn't supposed to." I proceeded to ask her if it was a hairband or polly pocket clothes or a stick-on earring (common things I pull out of her mouth) but she told me, "It was moneys." Mr. Prince then took her upstairs to show her the different coins to ask which one she swallowed and she pointed to the quarter. After investigating further, he realized a quarter he left near the sink the night before was not there.


I called Grandma K and her pediatrician's afterhours number, but after an hour of waiting (and after reading a few blog posts about other moms adventures to the ER), I decided I wanted to bring her in anyway.

She was a little scared as she changed into some clothes. "What are they gonna do to me?" I told her they would just take a picture of her tummy and nothing would hurt. I think it was enough to scare her into telling me the truth if she was lying, so I felt better about that.

The x-ray showed it was already into her intestines, so that was good. Now, the fun part! We have to check her stool until it passes and possibly have another x-ray done in a few days. Oh, the fun of parenting! She gave us signs to watch for in case it obstructs the intestines, and we were off! Angelica Pickles looked sad and asked, "When are they gonna take out the moneys?" HA!

There is it!

She looked sad at bed and told me she wanted to poop it out right now. I made her feel better and told her we would throw a party when we found it.

So, anyone who wants to come over for the Poopy Party in the next few days, you are more than welcome!! =)~

Thanks, Angelica Pickles, for the many adventures in my life!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Myra is 6 months old!!

Our little miracle baby is 6 months old today!


Ever since we left the hospital the time has just flown by!

Myra is currently still on anti-seizure medication and will be for the first few years of her life. But, she is not having seizures and is very stable. We are so very thankful for this. She does have some facial "ticks," but we are hoping these go away as she grows. With one, her little eyebrow goes up like she's checking you out. It's actually pretty cute, but probably annoying to her. =)

Her pediatrician has asked us to supplement her with a bottle of breastmilk mixed with formula once a day. She is 10lbs 12oz and 23.5 inches long at six very tiny! I have to say, we are still loving this tiny baby stage and are soaking it all up! Though, for her health we are praying and hoping she'll start to grow more soon. We'll be exploring solid foods this month and are hopeful she will take to them well. I will be consulting with a speech therapist hopefully soon. We are keeping her feeding tube in until we know she's going to take to solid foods well and starting to gain weight better. Her head circumference is still not changing significantly and she is currently 6 standard deviations from normal. We are continuing to pray her head will start to grow proportionally as her body starts to grow and that her brain will continue to function and develop. Please pray with us.

Right now Myra is seeing a wonderful therapist through First Steps and is progressing, but fairly slowly. She is gaining more control of her head and neck and (when propped with arms extended) is able to roll over! She loves soft toys and blankets and smiles when you place something in her hand. Her vision impairments do not allow her to be able to reach and grab for toys, but she will hold a rattle in her hand and react to the noise. She loves music, too. And her favorite song for us to sing is "Amazing Grace" and I really need to learn all those verses! Kyler calls it the "magic song" because she almost always immediately calms when I sing it. She is very sensitive to smells and voices when people hold her and will react negatively if she isn't comfortable. I think a few of her favorite people are Gracelyn, Grandma K, Grandmama, Uncle Benji, Uncle Brandon and PaPaw.

**I tried to upload a video of Myra rolling over and smiling at PaPaw, but I can't get it right now. I'll try again later...**

We are so lucky to have Myra. I have grown tremendously throughout these last six months. Growing has its pains, but they are worth it. We are looking ahead expecting great gains and great miracles in Myra's life. Looking forward to what these next six months will bring for all of us... Here is a look back on the last 6 months...

Myra Annette born on September 24, 2009

1 month - Finally home from the hospital!!

2 months

3 months

4 months

5 months

6 months!

We Love You, Myra!!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Showers, Funerals and Deep Thoughts

It's been an emotional week, to say the least. 1) I went back to my hometown for a baby shower and wedding shower of two of my best high school friends. There were five of us girls who were really close through school and have remained in touch. We were together again after a long time. 2) Grandpa P (Mr. Prince's maternal grandfather) passed away the Sunday I was out of town. Services were Wednesday and Thursday and we spent lots of time with his siblings and extended family this week. 3) And after being in large crowds of people who love to google over babies, it was an emotional roller-coaster when telling people how old Myra was, them mentioning how small she was, and in some instances noticing the "differences" in her and other children they know her age.

Me, Becky's sister Heather, Becky (mom-to-be), Amanda, Cory (hostess), Lindsey (bride-to-be)

The wedding and baby shower were great! Much more sophisticated than others I've been to. =) At the baby shower there were Mimosas and fancy keish and the entire wedding shower was a wine tasting event. We even went to a winery for the Bachelorette party! I tried 9 wines that Saturday and actually found ONE I liked. I bought a bottle for Mr. Prince and my anniversary in June. I can count on one hand how many alcoholic drinks I've tried, and only ONE have I ever liked! And, it's not even made anymore...go figure! It was great to see my girls again....and ALL together! That doesn't happen very often. I used to visit home 4-5 times a year when I had 1-2 kids, but after #3 came along, the visits have dwindled down to a long summer visit and Christmas. Though, after Myra's hospital stay we didn't even go home this past Christmas and this was the first time all of my friends had even seen Myra! I've been known to be a baby-hog, so I'm not sure if they all even got to hold her, but it was great to visit and just be with them all day long. As a mom of five, I can't even remember that last time I got to have a Girl DAY! Sid the Science Kid and Miracle Myra were the only kids I brought on the trip, so it was a nice break...sort of. Would have been better if I had someone to nurse Myra in the middle of the night..... A mom can dream, right?

We had the baby shower from 10am-12pm and then the wedding shower was from 2-4pm at Cory's house.....

Becky looked adorable in her brown dress! (I totally want one for a future pregnancy...ha) This is the best picture I could find with her belly in it. Her mom and sister and her are unmistakingly related. It's a good thing!

Here is me and Lindsay at the winery.... Isn't she fab?
We all used to say we would stay friends, despite the known phenomenon that you move past your high school friends and lose touch. Well, we've beat the statistics thus far. 10 years! I think that's pretty impressive. Love you, girls!

I was able to visit in IL a few days longer since Mr. Prince took bereavement leave most of the week. I had a good trip home, a nice visit with a friend on the way, and was home in time for the visitation on Wednesday for Grandpa P. It was great to see family we don't see every day and remember Grandpa together. I found it amusing the priest prayed, asking God to allow Grandpa into eternity. All I can think of is how's he's already been there for a number of days, days which have no time restraints there. No need to ask, Kyler made sure Grandpa knew Jesus before he passed. *smile* I didn't attend the mass and burial on Thursday, but all Grandpa's grandsons wore one of his bow-ties as pallbearers. They looked great. I look forward to visiting the grave-site this spring and seeing Grandpa and Grandma laid to rest there together. I will think of them often and remember their legacy. One in which I could never live up to, but one to copy my life after. You will be missed Grandpa P...

I am still a little uncomfortable around "normal" babies Myra's age these days. Yeah, I've been there four times, but seeing the view from the other side of the fence is an eye-opener. Now, when I see the little boy at the Library on permanent crutches due to Spina bifida, I smile at him...and the mother. And I think about how awesome it is that this little boy has the ability to walk. And I tell him he is as fast as SuperMan on those crutches! And he smiles big. And when I see a little girl with thick glasses reading at the table, I think about how adorable children are with glasses and how awesome that she can read the small print in that book with the technology of today. And I even think about the moms with "normal" babies and children that I pass. That they have no idea - like I did for 6.5 years - that there is this whole other world of moms with children who have some type of special need. And I thank God for their child's perfectly round head that is growing and developing. And I pray they someday completely understand the blessing that they have. And I pray for each and every swollen womb I see. That they do not have the same experience that Myra had. That they are healthy. We all say we want a "healthy" baby, but then discuss that we really want a boy/girl, green or blue eyes, a tall football player or a graceful ballerina, a doctor or a nurse.... I pray for health above all else now. And I go home and kiss my own four perfectly round heads and even the slightly warped balding one. Just a whole new perspective.

I think as Myra gets older and her delays become more apparent and her small head more noticeable, I'm going to have to come up with some brief explanation for strangers. I know they'll ask. I know they'll pry. I don't mind so much if I can maybe educate them. Maybe ease their uncomfortableness with people with disabilities. And people with big families. I have no idea what that little synopsis will be yet, but I'll have to work on that soon. Of course, I have no idea what Myra will be in the future either, but I have extremely high hopes! =) Regardless of what is going on today, God moves in our lives daily and has shown His ability and desire to heal Myra in more ways than one. I expect miracles. I think I always will.

I have been doing some research this week on visually impaired infants. Did you know that 90% of a what a child learns in their first 3 years is through vision? Wow. So, now I'm looking into how to teach a child with visual impairments. I do believe that Myra's vision will improve (so do the doctors), but I have to still have to teach and interact with her where she is at right now. So, researching has begun. I read visually impaired or blind children will be behind developmentally, independent from their intellectual abilities, simply because they need to be older to understand this dark world around them before they start exploring it themselves. They will often not reach for objects until 12 months, and things like crawling and walking cannot be achieved until they reach this point. They are delayed in holding their heads up because they don't have the visual clues to tell them to do so. So, now we have no idea if Myra is behind due to her vision or due to neurological issues. Annoying. But, I thankfully have been doing some things right - like showing her different textures and listening to different sounds/music - but I feel like I have a lot to learn. I hope it doesn't come to all that I've read - braille books, walking sticks - it's all a little overwhelming if you read too much and think too much. And, I DO read too much and think too much sometimes...

Myra's journey keeps bringing me to new forks in the road. I feel like I'm getting further and further away from my old life as I explore this new land and learn this new language. And, I feel like I won't be anywhere for too long. That there will always be new forks in the road. New languages to learn. New people to meet. I've never been a traveler. Sure, I'd love to see Spain or Paris. But, I don't care to spend the money, book the hotels or find childcare. I'm happy with our little house in Indiana. But, apparently God wants me to learn how to travel in a new way. Chase him through the tall grass and rocky creeks. I'm trying, but my shoes are new and stiff and I keep having to take them off and take a break. I've even tried to find my way back home by myself a few times. Back to the familiar. Back to the days when my other six month olds were sitting up, filling bibs with drool, chewing on toys, laughing as I play peek-a-boo. I got majorly lost and had to listen for Him to find my way back. Sometimes I walk, sometimes I run and sometimes I drag. Sometimes I enjoy the new flowers on the path and sometimes I curse the unfamiliar winding in the road. But, I know He'll always be there. To lead the way. To carry me when my burden is too heavy. Too lay down his robe so the path is smooth. I depend on that. I probably would just make a tent and stay somewhere if I didn't know He was leading me and preparing the way for me. It's a new journey, but isn't every journey a new one? And if we look back at the journey and find ourselves closer to Christ, doesn't that make it a Great journey? So, I'm on probably one of the Greatest Journeys of my life. I guess that makes it all worth it.

Ginny Owens' song says it perfectly....

The pathway is broken
And The signs are unclear
And I don't know the reason why You brought me here
But just because You love me the way that You do
I'm gonna walk through the valley
If You want me to

It may not be the way I would have chosen
When you lead me through a world that's not my home
But You never said it would be easy
You only said I'd never go alone

Cause I'm not who I was
When I took my first step
And I'm clinging to the promise You're not through with me yet
so if all of these trials bring me closer to you
Then I will walk through the fire
If You want me to

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Olympics 2010

Sid the Science Kid is 7!
Here he is showing off all his goodies from his siblings on March 4th.
(Notice the completed Legos...they were done within minutes of receiving the gifts!)

After much discussion, Sid decided he wanted an Olympic Birthday Party! Mommy didn't want to find toys to entertain a bunch of boys, so we decided planned games would keep them moving and keep our house in order. =)

The Cake
I was originally going to do five 8in round cakes to make the Olympic rings,
but decided MnM rings were good enough.

Sid's paper plate project. Turned out good!

The decorations.
I'm not too much into streamers or other fancy decorations. A few balloons and a nice cake are usually all I have, but these flags were a nice touch (along with an Olypmic Dream banner) and will be used in school next year.

The Olympic torch.
None of the kids quite got what this was, so I didn't do the Olympic torch lighting at the beginning of the party like I had planned. It's a Wiggles microphone, so I used it to announce the medals at the end of the party....until it irritated me and I quit using it. Goofy project.

There were 8 boys and 1 girl
(Sid's beloved girlfriend...the one he said, when he was five,
that he was going to marry her in 13 years....HA!)

I had Olympic music on when people arrived and the kids picked a country and flag to color that we would tape onto their backs. We had 6 Olympic games to compete in. I think the kids did really well keeping a good attitude about "winning" and such. I think many were still a little young to really care, so that made it nice.
Oreo Stacking
Cousin Josiah

Birthday Boy

Marshmallow Stuffing (Mr. Prince's idea...)
Cousin Connor

Friend Simon

Friend Samuel

The Beloved Laela

Should-have-been Gold Medal Winner, Israel, with 5 marshmallows!
(He represented the country of Israel....go figure!)

Uncle Brandon wanted to show the boys how it's done...

He had 15 or so, until he gagged himself....HA!

Pizza Break!
Each boy represented a different country, but of course the Birthday Boy represented the U.S.A.! I actually had to convince him to do so. He originally wanted to represent Mexico....??

It was so nice, the boys even got to play on the playset Mr. Prince put up last Spring!

Happy Birthday, Sid!

These were the handmade medals I put together. They were adorable!

Oreo Stacking Medal Winners
Instead of a bouquet of flowers, the kids got a bouquet favor with fun little treats and a paper trophy with their name on it.

Marshmallow Stuffing Medal Winners
(I actually handed out the wrong medals here...1st and 3rd were switched, but I chose not to fix it so as not to upset anyone...oops! Sorry Israel!)

Balloon Challenge Medal Winners
For the balloon challenge each contestant had to pop three balloons and follow the directions on a piece of paper inside of the balloon. Things like "hop 3 times" or "Sing Happy Birthday to Sid." What was funny was Sid the Science Kid sang Happy Birthday to himself....Twice!

Milk Jug Bowl Medal Winners
For the Milk Jug Bowl you had three chances to bowl down six empty milk jugs. The winners had the most jugs down in their three turns. Connor knocked down 14 out of 18!

Basketball Medal Winners
Many of the boys had the same basketball score, so we just choose three winners with tops scores and made sure everyone got 2 medals. It was really the only game we "rigged." =)

Obstacle Course Medal Winners
We had a small obstacle course through the lower half of the house that included jumping jacks, soccer, tunnels, basketball, summersalts and a puzzle at the end. I think they enjoyed it. Go U.S.A.!

At the end, we awarded the Birthday Boy with the Olympics 2010 Trophy!

Sid the Science Kid got some more great building toys and books/puzzles. He had all the Legos done within an hour of the party ending. And Mom and Dad forgot to even give him all his gifts at the party! So, he got his Comic Bible, daily devotional and Armor of God play armor later.

I think the party was a hit and everyone enjoyed themselves. I have a feeling this will be the first birthday party Sid the Science Kid will remember.

Happy Birthday, Sid!! We love you!!