Friday, February 12, 2010

SNOW! SNOW! SNOW!



Well, the big news in our lives is that we had about 8 inches of snow in Allen, Texas! The news channels reported 12 inches in Dallas. It was a record snowfall that we have been enjoying for 2 days! It is AWESOME!! This is REAL snow that you can build with....not just the usual Texas ice/snow stuff we usually get. Theo, Levi, and Ruthie have been hard at work building ice caves, igloos, and snowmen. We got to spend the day at a friend's house yesterday while playing in the snow and drinking cocoa and just visiting. It was a fun day for all! The kids enjoyed having snowball fights with each other and watching their friend's big dog frolic in the snow. The kids would like to sled, but we couldn't get our Rubbermaid lids to work on these hills. Daddy will have to figure that one out! ha! I took them to the park today across the street. It was like a winter wonderland. So beautiful and so much snow! Ruthie, now an expert snowball roller, built a trio of ice people and an igloo. Their daddy, Rich also showed them how to build ice bricks using my bread pans. :) They would stay outside all day if their little feet and hands would hold up under the cold temperatures. ha! They are inside now drinking cocoa and warming by the fireplace and having the time of their lives!

There is so much snow that the bush at our next door neighbor's house completely broke and fell over in between our houses. Our little bush/tree in our front yard also looks pretty bad. We will have to assess the damage once the snow has melted. I can't ever remember getting this much snow in Texas. It has been a really fun winter!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Colorado Trip

Here are a few of the highlights from our trip to Colorado this August. I still have more to upload and will do so later. Enjoy these for now. We had a fabulous time! The weather was perfect--it was even cooler than usual there!!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Fouth of July and Visit with G'Ma and G'Pa

We all had a wonderful 4th of July with the grandparents and Aunt Phyllis, Uncle Chip, and all of the cousins. The kids created and participated in an Independence Day parade right in front of my sister's house while the adults sang and cheered them on. It was too precious! The kids blew giant bubbles, made pinwheels, ate homemade ice cream and hotdogs, swam in the pool, and fed the farm animals. It was an absolutely wonderful day! Our visit with the grandparents was full of fun as well. We visited the Bluebell Creamery and got a sample of their fresh ice cream. It was yummy! Later, we got to pet miniature horses at a local monastary. The land was beautiful with rolling hills! The only complaint was the scorching heat! UGH! The kids played in the sprinklers, ate popcicles, rode the Gator, and had fun walking on the trails G'Ma had prepared for them. Levi, who was scared of the Gator at our spring visit, was completely taken with it this trip. He drove that thing all over the place while Ruthie rode with him collecting rocks and sticks. They are a cute pair! Ruthie wanted G'Ma to blow dry her hair every night before bed while Levi curled up in bed with G'Pa to hear a bedtime story. Theo played computer games with G'Ma each night before bed, which they both thoroughly enjoyed. It was so much fun to watch them bond with their grandparents. We had a great vacation with lots of family fun!
video

Sunday, June 28, 2009

I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for ICE CREAM!!!










Today, after taking the kids for an afternoon swim, we made homemade ice cream! Levi LOVED this activity. He enjoyed making the ice cream and turning the crank, but what he enjoyed most of all was EATING it!! You can see from the pictures that he literally LICKED the bowl clean. Boy was he happy. He even asked for a second bowl. That kid loves his ice cream! We will be doing this again many times this summer since the kids really get a kick out of making their own ice cream!

Summer fun!! Swimming and homemade ice cream. What can be better than that?

Theo and Ruthie have been taking swim lessons this past week and will continue for one more week. They are doing great! Both can jump in and swim under water. They also learned how to tread water and swim on their backs. This is the first year they have taken lessons, and I can't believe how well they are doing and how fast they are learning.

Well, after receiving "encouragement" from brother and sister, Levi decided that he wanted to try swimming in the big pool too. Rich and I took him swimming this weekend, and he did so well! We couldn't believe it was the same scared little boy. He jumped into our arms in the pool and even put his entire head under water. (He doesn't really like to get the water in his eyes, but he did it anyway). He had so much fun--all of his fears have seemed to melt away. We are so proud of him! Next summer, he will take lessons too. For now, he is just enjoying splashing around with his big brother and sister. I am so glad he "warmed up" to the pool. It makes things more fun for all of us. Plus, it is good therapy for his little arm.

We are looking forward to celebrating the Fourth of July next weekend with our extended family. More summer fun!!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Karate Kid Theo Earned His YELLOW Belt!!





Theo finished Karate Camp today. It was 5 days for 5 hours each day. He worked so hard and didn't even complain. What a trooper! Theo and his friend Benjamin had lots of fun, too! The kids "tested" today and earned their belts. Theo was very excited. He is now going to work hard to earn his orange belt. This process normally takes several months--not just a week. So, you can see that they worked at an accelerated pace! :) Congrats Theo!

Next week, we begin swim lessons! That should be a fun way to cool off during these hot summer afternoons!

We're having fun and keeping busy this summer. Ruthie had a 36 hour virus this week with a 101.3 degree temperature and vomiting. UGH! Thank goodness the sickness subsided quickly. So far the boys haven't succomb to the illness! ha!

Levi went to his first story time at the library this week. He had so much fun singing and listening to stories and puppet shows. He can't wait to go back to story time. He also enjoys checking out lots of books to read at home. We're going to make this a regular event since Levi loves it so much. It is so good for his English skills as well. Levi just loves to sing and dance. After attending story hour, he goes around singing, "Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes". Too cute!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Scottish Rite Hospital Update

For all of my faithful blog readers....Here is the update for Levi's first visit to Scottish Rite Hospital today:

The doctor said there are 3 areas to focus on with Levi's brachial plexus injury on his right arm. Here are the things we discussed with the doctor today:

1. His wrist movement--which could be "fixed" later with minor surgery. She said that is not a decision we need to make now. She would like to wait until he develops more. No rush....

2. Levi needs to have his arm "straightened"--it bends at the elbow at the radial head. That bone is sticking out somewhat. So...Levi has to wear a "brace/splint" at night when he sleeps for about 6-9 months to correct this. Six to nine months is also when we need to go back for a follow-up visit at Scottish Rite.

3. Levi's shoulder is dislocated because of the the brachial plexus injury--it is a secondary result from the original injury. It cannot be fixed though like an adult's could be fixed. If you were to dislocated your shoulder, the doctor would just pop it back into place. Levi's had grown wrong because it was left untreated for so long. So, there is nothing to "pop" his shoulder bone back into. So, there is a surgery the doctor could do entailing cutting a part of his bone to make his arm turn more outward--but it won't fix the actual shoulder.....but she said that this could take away some of the strength and ability he has now. So, it is something we are opting not to do. We think he is just perfect the way he is. I don't want him to go through all that trauma and pain and wind up with a worse situation or at least different problems. No point in trading one problem for another.

4. There is nothing the doctor can do for lengthening Levi's limbs. She said limb stretching was not recommended for him and was even too risky. He may just have one arm an inch or two shorter than the other. Levi doesn't seem to mind. I was sharing with my parents a cute story about Levi.....A couple of months ago, the kids were playing with Mr. Potato Head. Levi chose a long arm and a short arm for his potato. Ruthie tried to explain to him that that was wrong and he needed his arms to be the same length. Levi insisted that it was right, and he liked it that way and refused to change it. This just goes to show you that he seems himself in a positive way. He doesn't know anything is "wrong" with his arm....and we plan to keep it that way. He is just the way he is supposed to be. :)

5. The good news is that he required no physical therapy of any kind. The doctor told me to keep him in Karate and let him just be a kid--ride bike, swing, swim, etc. All of those activities would strengthen his arm. Yeah!!

6. The doctor wants us to go see a facial-cranial specialist for Levi's head. They want to make sure the skull hasn't closed too much to inhibit continual brain growth. We have to make an appointment to go to Children's Medical Hospital in the next few weeks. We'll see how this turns out. Please pray for there to be no problems associated with his sweet little head. :) We're leaving this in God's hands.

That's all we know at this point. I think it was definitely a good news day overall. We are doing as much as we can do for Levi's arm and will just have to make sure his head is okay. The experience was wonderful at Scottish Rite. Everyone was so friendly and helpful. We didn't have to wait long and were well taken care of! It's a fun place for kids---lots of neat things to see and do.