Saturday, November 30, 2013

Thanksgiving Break

I am so fortunate to work in a district where students and teachers have THE WHOLE WEEK of Thanksgiving off. What a blessing! We made the most of it! 

The 20th of November marked our ninth wedding anniversary - can you believe it? Mom was amazing as usual and stayed overnight with the kids so Jeremy and I could have an overnight date. (Let's just keep it real: we met our family deductive and out if pocket max by October 11, so we had more than enough Marriott Rewards accrued thanks to all of our credit card use. Ugh...) We went to a Mavs game - exciting and fun for us, though not a conventional anniversary celebration by any means. We had a great time! 

Seeing this will NEVER get old...

Thursday, November 14, 2013

A Saturday in Aggieland

Jeremy and I took a trip to College Station last weekend to watch A&M play Mississippi State. It was a whirlwind trip - just down for the game and back home - but we had a great time hanging out together!

We sat in the Zone Club - amazing view! 

At least most of the time. ;)

We got to see what was likely Johnny Football's last home game, and the last game at Kyle Field before its remodel. To commemorate this, the Aggie Band and Corps formed a huge block T on the field: very cool! 

Meanwhile, Luke (who was a little under the weather and kept to himself) and Kate stayed with Honey and Grand and played with their cousins. 

I hear JD was quite taken with Kate. I can't wait to see him with her! 

When we returned, we got to briefly see my sister Megan and her friend Chris. Though I wish we could have visited longer (and that I had taken a picture... Ugh!), it was wonderful to see her even if just for a little while. 

What a great day... And I didn't even mention the glorious kettle corn. ;) 

Gooooo, Luke!

I am thankful for Luke's sweet teacher who emailed me this today: "Luke was drawing on a marker board today and made a face independently! He then added the arms, legs, and hair with a verbal prompt, and we think he made ears. He knew where to put all the parts. No tactile or visual prompts given. We were very proud! He's doing well writing his name too!" 

Then, in a second email: "he got the idea to draw this from another child sitting across from him who was drawing a face. I didn't suggest to him what to draw, he observed what another child was doing and then he did it too! So happy!" 

Imitating a peer, drawing on his own, and following prompts? SCORE!!! I was grinning ear-to-ear and tearing up when I got the email and saw the sweet picture...


Sunday, November 10, 2013

Luke Rocks

Luke's Pre-K year has had its ups and downs. One of his teachers at BWF said we are reaching a point where his progress may slow a bit since his vocabulary has increased so much that his speech processing time must increase, too. Throw in the poor kid having cavities filled under anesthesia, an EEG, and a ton of different appointments, and well, you can't blame the guy for not making huge strides. 

That said, we have learned three years into this autism odyssey that small strides ARE huge strides. We are always happy with and proud of Luke for his sweet spirit and hard work! 

Why Luke Rocks #1: he has gotten a sticker for doing a good job and having good behavior EVERY SINGLE DAY he's been at school this year. He is so awesome! 

Why Luke Rocks #2: he loves counting. Right now he can count to 100. Woo hoo! 

Why Luke Rocks #3: he does great work, like this graph his teacher sent me a picture of: 

Why Luke Rocks #4: he is gaining confidence with his fine motor skills, and his writing and drawing are getting better every day! When Luke doesn't feel confident about something, he seeks support. For a while he would only write if you were holding his hand (never mind that you aren't doing anything; he knows exactly how to write the letters, numbers, etc.). We got this message a couple of weeks ago: 

It's so light that it's hard to see, but he wrote his name by himself! Here's some other work he's done at home (all prompted): 

LUKE ROCKS!!!! We couldn't love him more! :D

Seven Months Old

Big goings on in the life of our seven month old, Katherine Anne: 

-You can sit up all by yourself! Your strength amazes me!
-You have two teeth! Your bottom teeth came in just before you turned seven months old. (Left on October 25; right onOctober  28.)
-Your left eye is doing great after your second surgery! You're really tracking well. 
-You are a flirt! You just smile and smile at everyone. 
-You are a GINORMOUS mommy's girl. You want me all the time. It is mostly very sweet, though your big brother probably doesn't think so. 
-You had your first contact lens emergency at day care last Thursday. I got a call that they found your contact on the floor. I came by during lunch to clean it off and put it back in, which was slightly nerve-wracking with an audience! It's pretty miraculous that it's the first time your contact has come out in five months...! 
-You mostly have the sweetest disposition ever... Except when you don't. Consider this group portrait attempt by your teachers. Picture 1.... 

Picture 2... Notice that someone (*cough cough* you) gets grumpy... 

....and takes your buddies right into the abyss of despair with you (picture 3):

It's a good thing that you are so sweet the rest of the time, because I bet you wear your teachers out! 
(Except for when you eat anyway. One of them told me they fight over who gets to feed you because you eat everything and quickly. Kate, you love your food!) 

Here are your monthly pics: 

I'm going to have to start working more quickly; you're starting to enjoy tugging on the onesie stickers. 

Kate, you are a pure joy. We adore you! 

Saturday, November 2, 2013

What day is it? GAME DAY!

If it weren't for opponents from Alabama, A&M would be undefeated! Oh well. At least I've seen them win, I've seen them lose, but I've never seen them quit.

Kate the Brave

We took Kate to see her ophthalmologist in mid-August because we thought her eye was wandering more than it should be. Dr. Wang confirmed this, and we came back to see her October 1. At that appointment, she set up Kate's second eye surgery to correct the lazy muscles for the 11th, just ten days later (and in the same week as two big procedures for Luke. Yikes!). We geared up for what wound up being one of the most tiring weeks of our lives...!

Tough Guy Luke

I am in awe of my kids. There's really no other way to put it. Even at just 5 years and 6 months old, Luke and Kate show more resilience and strength of people many times their ages. I'm so proud to be their mommy! 

Halloween 2013

Halloween 2013 is in the books! Thanks to my friend Izzy, I got into the spirit a little early at GHS Goblin Day. How creative is this costume? I'm very thankful for my sweet snow buddy. She's a new and dear friend!