Saturday, July 31, 2010

Gross

I have read so many little ditty's titled "you know you are a...." they are usually pretty cute most of the time right on.

Today I felt like writing my own ditty.

This evening we headed out to get dinner at The Olive Garden. We ordered our food, ate some salad and bread sticks, and got our main meal. It was at this time Makenzie was looking a bit bored in her chair so I took her out. That lasted about 3 seconds before I realized she was poopy.

Yeah, well, that was an understatement! It was everywhere. All over her, and her chair. Lovely! A good while later she was cleaned up and we sat back down.

Now.... you know you are a parent of a special needs child and so are your friends when you can sit at the table and laugh while comparing gross, stinky stories, about dirty diapers and not blink an eye!

After dinner we headed home and hung out for a bit before it was time to put Miss Pris to bed. The boys were so cute with her tonight. We started practicing rolling back and forth and that soon turned into full blown wrestling. Makenzie LOVES to be in the middle of all of the action and the boys know just what she likes.

There are so many people that want to treat Makenzie like a China doll. She hates that. She is not going to break. She has 3 brothers and loves every second! Just because Makenzie can't walk don't mean she can't play! They are so good with her!



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Love my kids!

Believe... Prayer Works!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

How Green is Your Grass?

Life is not always greener on the other side.

I have spent the last 2 weeks with one of my very best friends, Michelle. One week we spent doing therapy in Phoenix and one week at her home a few hours away. Our lives are VERY different but so much the same. You see her 7 year old son, DJ has Autism. There are many people who have so many ideas and theories about what Autism is and how it is caused. Today I don't much care about any of it because the bottom line is Autism is sad, it is scary, and a huge problem which is not being taken seriously enough.



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I met Michelle over three years ago while in Arizona for HBOT. At first glance DJ looks like a very handsome, normal child. If you take some time to get to know DJ he is still a handsome but far from what the world would consider normal. He can not focus or stay on task. Sometimes the simple task of eating dinner can take hours because he just can not sit still long enough. It doesn't take much for him to become over stimulated at which point he beginning to yell, make weird noises, cover his ears, and bolts. He can talk to you all day about his favorite thing in the whole world.... trains... but can not carry on any other kind of conversation well. I could go on but I think you get the point. DJ is an amazing little boy with a heart of gold. I love that kid with all my heart.

Many times Michelle and I have talked about our kids. Many times I have brought up the fact that at least DJ can walk, talk, and eat. After living with DJ, in his home, I have decided the grass is NOT greener on this side of the fence. It is about the same green as where I am standing. Michelle deals with different issues but they are just as hard. DJ is on a crazy diet because he is allergic to everything. He takes MANY supplements because his body does not absorb nutrients. He is full of toxic medals that require IV celation, and his immune system requires IVIG once every 3 weeks. Michelle has done ABA, RDI, sensory learning, IM, and is now on course to start neuro feedback and ABM. The time and money that goes into all of this is insane!




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We planned our trip so that we could be with DJ on his 7th birthday. Here is his cake made with "no" food. It is pretty much everything free! There is no wheat, soy, lactose, casien, dairy, or eggs. DJ LOVED it! What a treat!

The fight for our kids is the same as is the love, the hope, the guilt, and the fear of the future we have for our children. The emotion, and frustration start in different places but finish on the same line.

Brain injury sucks, Autism Sucks, but man these kids are the strongest human beings I have or probably ever will meet!

Some days it is easy to feel sorry for myself. To feel like life is so hard but life is hard for many people. Walk over to some one elses grass and take a peek.... you will see their grass isn't all that green after all.

Believe... Prayer Works

Sitting Tall

I broke out my camera today. Your welcome....lol




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I plopped Makenzie on the floor to work on sitting  and this is what she did.......






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She amazes me every day! Makenzie works so hard and yet alway has a smile on her face!

Believe...Prayer Works!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Point of View

I got an e mail this morning that was unexpected but welcome from a friend I have not heard from in a very long time. She shared with me her point of veiw on some things that happened what seems like a life time ago. I very much respected her thoughts and sent her an e-mail back with some of my thoughts and what I felt happened. It was much needed and hopefully she will respect the things I had to say as well.

It got me thinking... (I have been doing a bit to much of that lately).... about the many different relationships we have in our lives. Each and very one is so different.

Everyone has their own point of view and opinions. We all communicate in different ways and are all such different people who see things in life so differently.

This has been something I have dealt with a lot over the last 3 years.  When you have so many people weighing in on your life and the many decisions there are to make it becomes inevitable.

Friends who don't live with special need who don't understand why you are always busy, can't go out, make talk about things that don't make sense to them, and just can't understand why life has become so different.

Doctors ALWAYS have an opinion about EVERY thing and want you to follow every order to a tee. The crazy part is that some doctors share a  different opinion and point of view then other doctors of the same specialty.. I guess that is why the second opinion is so important. It is also never a good idea to bring up bio medical treatment with a western medicine doctor. That is a BAD plan..... ok, ok, to be fair.... I have found a few western medicine doctors that do appreciate bio medical medicine.

I have a great support system when it comes to my family, yet there are still different points of view and opinions.

Parent's of children with special needs share many different ideas on what works and what doesn't. There are many different conditions, treatment options, doctors, and therapy's. Each and every parent deals with this journey in a different way. As well as each child responds differently.

The school system and teachers work in a different world then the rest of the above. They primarily focus on one aspect of children's life.....education. This is ok until you have a child who needs special accommodations. Then  the differences in opinion pour in. They are great people who happen to work in a system that most of the time doesn't work for our kids without a ton of sharing of ideas and opinions.

Some days I feel so overwhelmed. I do my best to hear out every one's point of view and opinion but some days there are to many.

At the end of the day we all do what we believe is best for our family and sanity!  We are the advocates. When it comes to our kids our opinion as their parent is the trump card. For me it is an honor and something I take very seriously.

So we move forward.

We are having a great time. It has been so nice to slow down. To take a break. To think without the crazyness of normal life.

Makenzie is doing well. She is still a little rolly polly but she is also relfuxing a lot, I am frusterated but keep praying. She is not vomiting and is still gaining wieght and that is GREAT! We got in the pool today and she loved it! She moved so much. She chased her brothers all over the place and of course giggled a ton! She busted out laughing this evening when her brother farted which had us all rolling.  Other then the reflux she is WONDERFUL! Praise God!  So proud!

Please pray with me for Makenzie's reflux to disappear. Pray that God would heal her gut. She is so much better then she was 2 years ago. If we could just get over this last hump I would be the happiest mommy EVER! Pray!

Believe... Prayer Works!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Life Lessons

I have seriously been neglecting my camera. Not cool I know.  I am sorry.

Part of the problem is that my keyboard on my computer is broken so getting the pictures onto the blog requires both the iPad and the computer. I found an app that will do both  but I haven't perfected that either. Oh well.

I spent most of today in deep thought and prayer. Reality is HARD. Children dying is hard. A Princess that you know in real life,  meeting Jesus, is even harder.

Every time my daughter coughed, or refluxed, I went to a bad place. The sense of security over how well Makenzie has been doing is gone. Real is scary. Real is REALLY scary and I don't like it.

Today I kept praying that God would give me peace, give Heather peace and protect my girl... and my boys for that matter. I want to say that I whole heartidly trust God's plan but as the human I am, the thought of God's plan involving life without any of my kids makes me want to puke.

I could post some peachy happy post about how great life is....  and really life is VERY good. Makenzie is doing so well but when hard things in life show up it shakes your soul. 

 A friend and I where talking this afternoon. We got to talking about how much in our lives changed after our children suffered brain injuries. So much more then the loss of who our children where and would become. This stuff is so much more far reaching then just "the accident". Some for the better and some really hard.

When Makenzie had her accident I lost my best friend. We had kids the same age. We were pregnant together, we did first birthdays, talked about breastfeeding, potty training, we did play groups and gymnastics together with put kids.

While Makenzie was in the hospital my best friend and a couple other woman picked me up from the hospital to get me out. On the way she told my other friend that she couldn't handle it. I really never spoke to her after that night because she ran away. The fact that bad things happen was something she couldn't accept. It hurt but I have found friendship in many more that can stare reality in the face and stand strong.

It is hard to face the reality that that life is short and unpredictible. Some of us can stand in that reality and be strong for the people in our lives and some run away. I am not running anywhere. It is not a choice for me.

This is a big life lesson for me. This is a lesson in love, strength, trust, compassion, peace, and continued hope. This is a lesson in softening a heart that has become calloused from all of the heartache, tragedy and pain in the last 3 years.

"Do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord, no matter what happens. Remember the great reward it brings you!" (Hebrews 10:35, NLT)

Dear Lord,

How we thank you for the great confidence we can have in you no matter what happens! At those times when our vision becomes clouded by trials and our faith may seem to falter, Lord we ask that you would open our eyes so that we can see you clearly. We know you are at work in our lives and in Heather and Bart's's lives to bring about good things, but the daily struggles can sometimes distract us from that truth. Therefore we ask that you would remind us of the wonderful ways you have worked on our behalf in the past-even things we may have long since forgotten. Lord, we pray that as we reflect on how faithful you have been to us in days gone by, that our confidence and faith for days ahead would be renewed. We thank you that you have reminded us through this verse that having confidence in you brings us great rewards.

In Jesus' Name
 
Believe... Prayer Works! 

Monday, July 26, 2010

I have spent the last 12 hours trying to imagine the pain that Heather and Bart must feel right now. I have thought of their family and little Samantha every waking moment of these past 12 hours. There are NO good words and the tears just fall.

Even though I didn't see this family often I felt like I knew them well. I sat this morning reading past posts on Heather's blog and it felt so unreal. All the while looking at Makenzie thinking about my fear of this same thing happening at any moment.

I want to hug Heather. I want to be there but right now I am so far away and that makes me very sad.

Every hard time in life feels so insignificant. Yesterday I was so irritated with Makenzie's reflux. Today I just wiped it up and moved on making sure I gave her a kiss and a big smile before I walked away.

Samantha was a fighter. All of these special kids are so strong. The thought of her beautiful toothless grin in Heaven is amazing.

I have learned so much from Samatha and her mommy. I will continue to learn from Sam and the beauty of her life. 

I do not know if Heather will be riding in the Courage Classic. I don't know if I could do it but one way or the other Heather is one of the strongest women I have ever known. Everything she has done in support of The Children's Hospital, the place Sam, Makenzie, Max, Cici, and many others have called home at one time or another on top of everything else is stellar.

Samantha will be remembered.

Smile at Jesus for me baby girl and give Him a big kiss from Makenzie!

Fly

Yesterday I spent an hour writing a post basically about how bad I felt my life sucked. Some days it feels like the sky is falling Chicken Little. However today was a much better day. I guess it is all in the frame of mind because nothing has changed between then and now.

Today I did nothing  very little. I am not sure when the last time was I did that but it felt good. We all hung out in the air conditioned house. I played on the floor with my kids. We built a Ferris wheel out of Tinkertoy's, ate lunch, played some video games, rolled around with giggle box Makenzie and just enjoyed life simplified. It was nice.

Makenzie is doing so much better with her rolling. She rolls from right to left by herself with ease almost every time. The opposite way is a bit harder but she is trying. She managed to get onto her belly tonight and instead of rolling over she brought her hand up and lifted her head. WOW!!! She has been walking great with help and is so alert and interactive.

I am really amazed with what this session of ABM has brought. In the midst of the craziness it is hard to see but the changes have been huge. There is always that one small problem that I keep butting up against..... good therapist..... different state..... far away. Oh well! I guess that had never stopped us before.

After a great day I jumped onto the Internet for some good ole social networking. What I found today BROKE MY HEART into many pieces. Today Samantha went to be with Jesus. Today her mommy and daddy are broken hearted. 

Samantha was a beautiful little girl who had amazing parents. The few times I met Sam and her mommy I was in awe of how much joy and happiness surrounded them.  AMAZING! Please pray for Samantha's mommy , Heather and  her daddy.

Heather is a Super Mommy. She has done so much good from those who have helped not only her daughter but also mine and many others. Please consider donating to the Children's Hospital Courage Classic in Samantha's memory!

Heather please know that we are thinking about you guys and praying for peace. Even though we can not be there with you in person we are here! Love ya girl!

Believe... Prayer Works!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Pile it on!

We are are still here.

Yesterday morning we made the trip 3 hours from Phoenix to my friends house and it went amazingly well. No crying or fighting but I am TIRED!

Thursday night Makenzie's tube came undone and so instead of her getting the water the bed did. In Colorado this would only be a small thing but in the land of rocks, sand and catus, this turned into a bit of a problem.

Makenzie was a bit dehydrated and that means more reflux. She got plenty of water last night and looks a ton better but is still really refulxy. Frustrating to say the least.

Right now I am so happy to be with my friend. This last week was overwhelming for many reasons but the big one being that a diagnosis was suggested for one of my boys. After doing some research and looking at one of the diognostic tools  for the disorder which was suggested I realized the suggestion was most likely correct.

Now this is somewhat relieving because it answers some frustrating behaviour issues we have been having but yet does not excuse any of it. It means more doctors which doesn't make me happy, more therapy, and some of the same treatment that Makenzie has been receiving which means more money.

Throw some more on. Pile it up. Just keep it coming.

So I apologize for hiding from my blog. Honestly I just haven't had the energy or the time to write.

Other then all of the above we are having a great time. My friend's pool has gotten good use.  Makenzie is so loose, sitting up tall in her chair and moving a ton. I am so excited to see all of the new things as she continues to integrate everything she learned last week. 

I am so thankful for all of my friends that offer so much support. 

Believe... Prayer Works!

I also fixed the Vlog I posted on ABM. If you did n't watch it check it out.


ABM Vlog from makenziesmiracle on Vimeo.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Our Crazy Life... The Vlog

It was a great week.

Tonight we said "see ya later" to Julie and Joey. I am not really so good at that. It was short and sweet with tears that followed.

Since this week has been so crazy and my posting has been slacking Julie and I decided to make a video blog or Vlog to show you all a day in our life during out of state intensive therapy. It was a ton of fun to make and I find it quit entertaining and therapeutic. LOL

Enjoy!

ABM Vlog from makenziesmiracle on Vimeo.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Happy Hour!

Today was hump day. Two more days to go. This is good and bad all at the same time. I am tired. We get up at about 6:30am in order to get everything done in time to leave. At about 8:20am we are in the car, wheelchairs, diaper bags, and kids loaded. Therapy starts at 9am and gets done about 11am. Then we have to be back by 1pm which leaves us time to eat and hang for a few minutes before loading the car and heading back. From 1pm-3pm again we are in appointments. We load up again and get back to the hotel about 4pm when the kids want to swim, need to be fed, showered and of course we would never miss happy hour before it is off to dream land for the kids and social hour for the mommies.

On thurs though there will be see ya alters and I don't like those... at all. I am sick of them.

Makenzie is doing wonderful! She is so loose and as we speak she is sleeping on her tummy. I love it. Normally she sleeps in a ball on her side so for her to sleep flat on her stomach is amazing! She has been rolling really well and loving the pool. I really just want to squeeze her I am so proud.

I want to squeeze my boys too because they are such great kids! It has been a really long time since I have spent this kind of quality time with them and it is tiring but so much fun!

Tonight we all got to sit down and enjoy drinks and dinner together. I have not laughed so hard in a long time! After the kids were all tucked in bed we talked and talked and talked. So much fun! Loving life!

Tomorrow is going to come way to early. I thank you for all of your thoughts and prayers! Sweet dreams!

Believe... Prayer Works!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

ABM Day 2

Therapy is so much more enjoyable in the company of friends. 3 years ago we headed off to AZ to do our first round of HBOT.... ALONE. My grandparents drove up with all of our stuff. They stayed a few day and then it was just Makenzie and I. We stayed in a little teeny tine room with a shared bathroom and wandered out to the kitchen for meals every once in a while. It was very lonely.

However today I am surrounded by friends or maybe I should call them family. We laugh together. Cry together. Eat together. Drink together. We are together. It is so different and such a nice change. God has put so many wonderful people in my life. Starting with Michelle who I met on our first trip to AZ at the Ronald McDonald House.

Michelle has been my rock for a long time. I can bounce ANYTHING off of her. She never sugar coats nor judges. We live far apart but yesterday when we met face to face again for the first time in over 2 years it felt like we hadn't skipped a beat. This woman is amazing. She is busy... crazy busy... but is always there even though we walk very different roads. My daughter has CP her son has Autism. My daughter eats weird food through a tube. Her son just eats weird food. Her son walks and has no fear, my daughter has no fear but can't walk. Sensory over load and vestibular issues run high in both of our kids and the constant guessing game on what to do next is so similar. I want Makenzie to be on the never ending move like her son and she would love her son to have some of my daughters stillness. We are both moms with broken kids. In the end even though we struggle with different issues none of that even matters because we want the same thing.... healing for our babies!

Then 2 summers ago I met Julie at the NAPA center. We connected immediately. Our kids we so much alike. They have different issues but all in all very much the same. They are the same age within 2 weeks. There accidents are 2 months apart. She has other kids the same age as mine. We both like to laugh and neither one of us takes life to seriously. We have so much fun together. We laugh a lot and have done a lot of the same things to help our kids.

So today we loaded up the kids and headed out for day number 2 of ABM. I really like the practitioner here. She really seems to get our kids. In talking with her with in the first 20 mins of meeting Makenzie she had a plan. At the same time she knew that Makenzie could and probably would change that said plan at any moment. Makenzie is SO loose and is talking and rolling a ton! She was really refluxy today for the first time in over a week but seemed to be better by the end of the day. She is such a trooper!

The boys have been in the pool every chance they get and are loving it! For the most part they are being great!

Tomorrow is anther full day but let me tell you I won't be lonely .... not for one second!

Believe... Prayer Works!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Tired Busy

"Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commands."
(Deuteronomy 7:9, NIV)

What a great day! Busy! It is 11:30pm and I am just now sitting down!

ABM went well and one of my best friends arrived this afternoon. I am tired....very tired.

I will try to write more tomorrow but for tonight I am going to spend some time with my good friend and then go to bed.

Believe... Prayer Works!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Blazing Hot

I love my life. No really I do. I don't always love all of the trials and heartache but at the end of the day I have so very much!

Today after getting up late rushing around trying to move from the house to the van at 6am we made it to AZ with no issues. Makenzie is a great traveler and the boys were so much help.

We took the shuttle to the hotel and made it in time for breakfast. Yum! I fed Makenzie as soon as we arrived at the hotel and she did great! I was worried. In the past she has not tolerated eating well with travel and this was the first time we put the 2 of those together with the G tube instead of the J tube. No issues, happy tons of smiles ad no puke! Praise God!

The boys spent pretty much the whole day in the pool. Makenzie and I got in to and she loved it. At a blazing 113 ish degrees the pool doesn't stay very cold and kinda feels like a bath tub but that is the perfect temp. for Makenzie.

About 7:30pm Julie and Joey arrived and we took a walk in the basing hot dark down to the pool. Makenzie was already in bed so Julie and Joey took a dip while I stayed dry .... well kinda dry on the side. Fun times! This is going to be a great week!

Tomorrow we will start ABM. After taking a couple of months off I am really excited to see how Makenzie does! Please pray that God would touch our practitioners' hands with healing for Makenzie for God's glory! Pray for healing and safety!

I am off to bed. 6:30am comes WAY to fast!

Believe... Prayer Works!

Still Breathing... I Think.....

Today started at 7am.

I got Makenzie up and gave her a bath, feed her, dressed her, and we headed out to therapy. She did GREAT! Before therapy we stopped at the bank. After therapy we drove 45 min away to Aspen Seating for another seating eval after grabbing some lunch. We now wait for medicaid approval and soon after we get that Makenzie will have a new pink chair! We left Aspen and headed to Best Buy to get a new mount for my GPS as our old one cracked. That was in and out. Pretty quick. Then it was off to sign some paperwork for repairs on my car. That was another 45 min drive. Sign the papers and drove back to our side of town to go to Target, Payless, the dollar store, the grocery store, and the post office. At this point I am not sure I am still breathing.

We got home about 3:30pm and I started Makenzies lunch. I ran around while she was eating and then when she was sone I took the boys to a friends to go swimming and Makenzie and I were off to a goodbye party. We got home about 7:30pm and I fed Makenzie dinner, packed a bit. Got Makenzie ready for bed, in bed, and picked up, finished packing, weighed the suitcases, made formula, dosed Miralx, started water infusion, loaded dishwasher, folded one last load of laundry, put the boys to bed somewhere in there, and now I am DONE.. well mostly done! Gotta be up at 5:30am to leave for the airport!

Can't wait to see you Michelle, Julie, Shauna, DJ, Joey, Christian, and hopefully a few others as well!

Good Night!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Warning... Battery is Running Low

The things we will do to make things work. There are only so many hours in the day and today there where just not enough.

I am starting to feel like the energizer bunny. My list is shrinking... I think.

Getting ready for vacation or not therapy must go on! Today was Makenzie;s last day of therapy at home for 3 weeks. Makenzie decided to go out with a bang! She is activating her lower back and holder herself up so well with her arms. She is also doing a GREAT job rolling and she even allowed her therapist to put her in all fours! Go Makenzie! I am so sad that we will not see this part of our lives for a while but so happy our last sessions went so well!



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Makenzie did not get up in time this morning so please excuse the bed head! LOL Don't you wish you got to comb through that every morning? Hehehe

From this point on my life just got quite comical. If it was Monday it would be a great not me Monday post!

I had several places to go so I loaded up the kids and Makenzie's lunch and headed to McDonalds. We ordered food at the drive through and headed to Target. I needed to feed Makenzie and get a bunch of shopping done so I started feeding Makenzie while the kids ate at the Cafe in Target. Yeah bad customer I know but I didn't have an hour to spend eating at McDonalds nor did I want to put Makenzie in and out of the car while she was hooked up to her feeding pump. Stare, laugh, think what you may, but it worked and I got everything done while Makenzie was being fed and that is really all I care about.

We walked next door and picked up some sandals at Payless and headed home to change Makenzie's diaper and pick up a few things that I needed to return and headed back out to the mall. At this point I am fading fast but this energizer bunny marched on.

We got to the mall.... after 45 min.... in rush hour traffic.....and headed to the Apple store. The items I wanted to return had been bought on line and the only thing they could do was give me store credit which I did not need. Strike 1.

Then we went next door to ZAGG to get the protective shield on the iPad fixed as one of the corners had come up. Much to my dismay they were out of the front pieces to replace the one on my iPad. The clerk looked at me and proceeded to to me I should have called first when I showed my irritation. Really? I should have called to find out if you had the one thing that makes your store a store in stock...hmmmmm.

I left the mall in tears. I had just completely wasted over 2 hours of time I did not have to waste. Crap! Not happy! On the way home we met grandma for dinner. It was very once to SIT and ENJOY some good time and hear all about her trip and of the adventures she had been on.

Then it was time to unload the van, pack the stuff I had bought, get Makenzie ready for bed, put Makenzie to bed, pack some more, blog, and now I am off to pick up, do the dishes, make formula, and get the boys in bed so that we can get up early and do this all over again tomorrow! I think I need to plug this bunny in. My batteries are slowy running out of juice!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Cherry Love!

Makenzie is eating dinner and I have run out of steam!

The clock is ticking on the hours before we leave on vacation. The laundry is washed. The house is picked up, the floors are mopped, the grass is mowed and trimmed but some how my list of things to do continues to grow longer!

Tomorrow is the last day to run errands and prepare as Friday is jam packed with appointments. Sigh......

The last few days however have been REALLY good. Makenzie is doing so well and after my week of grounded boot camp my boys are doing so much better.

We are now at our 3 month mark since we went to Costa Rica for stem cells and I see so much. Most of it is cognitive. Ya know the stuff that is SO hard to describe. Makenzie is so much more alert, she is paying attention and responding very fast. Her opinions have gotten even more obvious and she is understanding cause and effect in her body.

Yesterday we were out on the deck and I was eating a bowl of bing cherries. I asked her if she would like some and she gave me a huge smile and an Ahhhh... in Makenzie language that means yes. I told her she needed to get one out of the bowl and immediately she lifted her hand and put it right in the bowl. I took the pit out and wrapped it in tulle. She LOVED it! She chewed and chewed until 2 whole cherries were completely obliterated. Cognitive and physical improvement.... you bet! God is so good! The works of His mighty hands through His people here on earth are at work in my princess!

I am so excited to see my friend Michelle. I can't wait to see her face when she sees how good Makenzie is doing. It has been 2 years since we have been face to face and Makenzie has healed SO much in those years! Arizona here we come!

Thanks for all of the support and prayers!

Believe... Prayer Works!




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iPad Review

SO I promised you all an iPad review and here it is.

The bottom line is we LOVE the iPad. There are so many uses for this piece of electronics but I am going to stick to the special needs uses for it tonight.

I began researching the iPad after Makenzie showed interest in the iTouch. She loved the apps and they kept her entertained and provided motivation for her during therapy. Her speech/augmentative communication therapist began to have clients who's parents were purchasing the iPad for them and the reviews were outstanding.

Yes there are many "talker" apps that can be used instead of the bigger, more expensive communication devices but because of Makenzie's lack of fine motor coordination I was not really concentrated on that as much as I was the learning, games, coloring, and book apps. Most of these apps or very simple but entertaining.... perfect for Makenzie.

Before we started playing I wanted to make sure we protected the iPad.... mostly from drool! LOL. To do this I did a couple of things, the first being to buy a case.

I decided to get the Convertible Book Jacket made by INCASE. I looked at the iPad case made by Apple and felt like their case would not meet as many needs. I was right. The INCASE cover is much more sturdy. It stands the iPad up at 3 different angles and doesn't slip or fall. When it is closed it has a thick piece of elastic that hold the case shut which I have also used to wrap around the back of my car seat in order for Makenzie to be able o watch movies in the car. I love it!





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We also had it protected with a clear shield made by ZAGG . This is a clear plastic material that has a lifetime guarantee and withstands all kinds of wear and tear. The below video shows its amazing abilities.





We happen to have a store near us so we had them put it on the iPad for us but you can order the shield and do it yourself as well.

Then we started playing and playing and playing. With our hands and our feet. We watched movies and TV shows. We downloaded recommend apps and played some more. I was amazed at how much Makenzie moved her little arms and hands to make the games work. Some of the learning apps I have been playing hand over hand with Makenzie so that she can hear and learn form the content. I LOVE this thing!






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Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing



Here is a list of some of Makenzie's favorite apps

Dr Seuss's ABC, Cat in the Hat, One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish, books
ABC Lite
Magic Piano
I Love Fireworks
Vocal Zoo
ABC and Me HD
Counting
Toy Story
Eensy Harp
Animals
Percussion
Vehicles
I hear Ewe
Whiteboard
Doddlekids
Shapes
Toddler JukeBox12
The Wheels on the Bus with Mango and Papaya
Old Mac Donald

A lot of these apps where free or less then $2.00. Some were a bit more but not much.

We also found a way to mount the iPad onto Makenzie's wheelchair through a company called RJ Cooper. It includes a bumper case, a universal arm/mount, a 4.5 in plate, and some super Velcro. The links for each are below.

Bumper Case

Mounts

The finished product looks like this:






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Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing







Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing


Makenzie loves it and she can play without looking down! It is also wonderful for her to get her arms up against gravity! Go Makenzie!

RJ Copper also sells a Bluetooth speaker that one I figure it out will also be velcroed to the bumper case so that the Makenzie can hear movies and such a bit better.
Speaker

So there you have it.... The iPad in a nut shell. I really feel like this is the most amazing tool we have ever had for Makenzie and it sure is a lot of fun for the boys too! Finally something ALL of my kids can enjoy!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Doggy Paddle

This morning started out a bit rough.

About thirty minutes after Makenzie had breakfast, without any rhyme or reason Makenzie puked. At first I got really upset but knowing that Makenzie is gaining weight I was able to let it go and chalk it up to a bad morning, congestion, or something totally random.

Not fretting over this kind of stuff has become an art that has taken me over 3 years to learn. It is so hard when you have a child with medical issues to not obsess over every little thing, throw up your hands, get frustrated, cry, curse, and let it ruin your whole day. I still do all of the above but not near as much as I used to and this is a blessing!

Lunch and dinner went without incident.

After lunch I gathered all of my kids and a couple of neighborhood kids and headed to the pool. We met Makenzie's physical therapist there for some water therapy. Makenzie did SO well! Every single time I get Makenzie in the water she does something new. AMAZING!



Makenzie is learning how to roll over and keep her legs down in the water. Today during our session Makenzie pushed off of the step, jumped off of the step, walked RAN on the bottom of the pool, splashed her brother, and chased him all over the pool. Makenzie kicked like crazy propelling herself after him with only a finger prompt at her shoulders. She laughed the whole time.

She was so loose the rest of the day. She kicked and moved all night even rolling over almost falling off the couch! Good thing mommy can think fast! LOL

God is so good and I am such a proud mommy!

Believe... Prayer Works!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Stopping to Enjoy a Perfect Day!



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Go, Go, Go, Go, Go, Go, STOP!

Today Makenzie and I stopped for a bit. I was going to take her to The American Girl Store but our friends couldn't make it until tomorrow. So we stopped and rested.

The boys spent most of the day hanging out with the neighborhood kids fixing their bikes! It was quite a site to see! They all ended the day with a working bike and 6 full tires! Go Boys! Growing up so big!

While they played we cuddled on the couch, played on the floor, had some tummy time, and laughed a ton! What a perfect birthday!

Life NEEDS to slow down! I so enjoyed my time just to spend with my daughter. There was no agenda, no appointments, and my house just suffered. Our time was not about therapy or goal. I was not about what Makenzie could or couldn't do. It was just her and I hanging out together. Just She and I! This time also needs to be shared with the boys, however they were busy playing and as they get older mommy is just not that cool!

Makenzie and I ended our day with Kate Plus 8. I really have not watched much of this show but ever since she came back on with out Jon and as a Single Mother I have watched. I sit and smile at the TV for the whole hour. She may have four kids on me but oh can I ever relate!

This week is going to be crazy! We have all of Makenzie therapy appointments, a seating eval, running errands, and packing to go on vacation! Four kids, one mom, baggage, airplane, ABM, friends, fun, heat, pool, and of course margaritas! It is going to be fun but the getting ready part is always hard! That hard part starts NOW!

Tomorrow in between meals we will be folding a mound of laundry so we can pack, going to American Girl, and going to the pool for therapy on top of the normal, picking up of the rooms, making beds, and tidying the house. I am not really sure there is enough hours in the day but we will fit it all in some how!

Thank You everyone for all of the Birthday wishes on this blog and Facebook! I read each and every one of them to her including playing Izak and Jamie's American Idol audition fo Happy Birthday for Makenzie which was left on my voice mail.

Once again Makenzie always shows me up! There is not a gift that I could buy her that could top the gifts she gives me and everyone who knows her everyday!

Thank You Makenzie for being my daughter and for the amazing day of laughter we shared today!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MAKENZIE!

Believe... Prayer Works!

Celebrate Good Times

By the time it get this posted I am pretty sure it will be July 11th 2010 and that means that my BABY is 5 YEARS OLD!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MAKENZIE!

I never thought that any of my children would teach me so much. I thought I was going to be the teacher however I have learned more in the last 5 years of Makenzie's presence on this earth then I ever imagined I would learn in my whole life time.

I have learned that this song should NEVER be taken for granted




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Every single time you get to sing Happy Birthday to your loved one is a true gift from God. Makenzie loved it so much this year that we sang it twice!

I have learned that each and every one of us are so different and should be cherished for who we are.




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So instead of getting Makenzie a pink and purple princess cake I got her an Elmo cake. She loves Play with Me Sesame and smiles every time she sees Elmo. He is her favorite TV character, not any of the Disney Princess's. Even though I desire to have a girly girl she is not and I love that about her!

I have learned how truly important friends and family are.




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Julia and Makenzie are so sweet together and even though neither one of them can speak they still connect on a VERY deep level. Makenzie loves people in the most innocent and perfect way and there are days that I am jealous of her special ability to do so!

I have learned that there are so many simple things in life that can provide so much joy.




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Makenzie laughs all the time. You will find it a true rare moment to see Makenzie in a bad mood. She can find joy in just about anything despite her many limitations.

I have learned that God will put the right people in your life at the right time.






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Makenzie has the best team of therapists. They care so much for her and all believe in Gods healing power. They are always there for our family and never quit trusting that God will heal Makenzie. When I am down they are always there to remind me how far Makenzie has come. They are the best. There are many other people that God has into our lives at just the right time. Amazing!

I have learned that messes are not always a bad thing.




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Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing


 I put some frosting and cake on Makenzie's tray. Two years ago she would have flexed her whole body and cried the second her hand hit the cake and frosting. Today she moved her hands around in the mess and laughed. She looked down at the cake and giggled. She had so much fun.

I found some coconut milk "ice cream" and she LOVED it. She was covered in chocolate but this mess was adored by all. She is eating. Not only is she eating.... she is loving it! I love her messes!

I have learned that gifts consist of so much more then what is inside the box.




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Makenzie loves toys and each gift was picked just for her but she didn't ask me all day if she could open her presents... she doesn't get that concept. The wonder in her eyes was priceless though when she sat on the couch and started opening them. Even if she did not get one gift she would have been happy. Just seeing everyone come and celebrate my little girls life was worth more then anything contained with in the bright colored packages. The Miracle of life. The Miracle that is Makenzie and my boys.

Every year I wait for these occasions to knock me off me feet with grief but it never happens. There are way to many things to be grateful for.

Tonight my boys dug out the camcorder to record the tricks they where doing on the tramp. I have not seen that thing in over 3 years. I knew the tape inside had videos of Makenzie before her accident. Videos I did not want the boys to accidentally record over. In order to find a tape they could record onto I had to face what I have been avoiding since March 25th 2007. Video of Makenzie.

I sat and watched some of the video. I smiled. My neighbor came over and I handed her the camcorder to show off my beautiful daughter. There were no tears. Just joy. Amazing Joy.

The thing is.... yes that was my daughter walking, eating, dancing, talking .... but.... accident or no accident that is not who she would be today. That is my baby. Those are the same memories I would have of her regardless. They are AMAZING memories.

Today I could not be more happy with the little girl Makenzie has become.

Believe... Prayer Works!

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