Friday, August 31, 2012

"Can I call him?"

Grant just said to me, "Can I call him?"  him meaning Joel.  I've not heard him use the word 'him' before, so it definitely caught my attention!  Usually, he would say, "Can I call Daddy?"  So this is so cool that he is starting to use appropriate pronouns.

Yesterday, he helped himself to the little bit of leftover coffee and came to me with his coffee mug in one hand, "I like coffee!"  I asked him, "Why do you like coffee?"  And he quickly sweetly "Because it's tasty!" 

We are still working on words that end with T.  For many months he has been making a /k/ sound at the end of any word that ends with T.  It's been rather frustrating, to say the least, as it doesn't seem like we have been making any progress specifically in this area.  After talking with his speech therapist, we are trying a different angle and I am hopeful we will see progress soon!

We had VBS a month ago at our church.  The past two years I have been with Grant's group, but this year I helped in the kitchen with snacks.  I was excited for him to be on his own, but a few days before VBS started I began to be anxious and wondering if I made the right decision to not be with him.  Finding out who his leaders and helpers were going to be help calm my thoughts, but Monday morning I was filled with anxiousness again after leaving him with his group.  I was anxious he would misbehave, not participate with his group, not be understood by his helpers and peers, pick his nose incessantly, have a potty accident, be obnoxious.  I could go on.  It really was hard to leave him with his group - and as anxious as I was a few days leading up to VBS, I had no idea the feelings that would overwhelm me as I walked away from his group leaving him at the mercy of his helpers and leaders.  So I prayed. I released him to the Lord.  I prayed for his leaders and his helpers, for his peers, for him to have a great time and to behave.  This helped calm my heart.  And I was there the whole morning, so really, why was I so anxious?  I could check on him just about any time throughout the morning!

The week went really well and I was thrilled when he received the 'best boy' award on Thursday morning.  Both of his adult leaders told me he was really good, and that he was overall one of the better behaved boys.  Wow.  Boy, did this make me proud!  I am with him always, so I know just how rotten he can be, but I also know how sweet he can be at the same time.  I am so thankful that he had a great week.  He loved every minute of VBS!!

Other new things for Grant:
- He is playing with toys that he has had for months, if not years, that he has pretty much cared less for: his Buzz Light Year, his garbage truck, his tool bench.  He has been appropriately playing with toys intentionally, and it's so neat to watch.
- He continues to engage Kate and Joel and I: "Please play wif me" he will say. (Like right now as I am typing!)  He doesn't want to play in his room by himself anymore, as he has done for so long.  He wants and desires interaction, which is way cool, too!
- He is trying to read.  He will make up words for the pictures and "read" a book.
- He has been dressing up wearing his Buzz Lightyear costume...and you can tell that he is seeing the fun in playing dress up, and not just putting something random on (like a Cinderella skirt) just because sister is.
- I'm trying to teach him how to use my phone and allowing him talk to people on the phone.  He loves talking to Nana, Daddy, Aunt Christina, Uncle Daniel, Aunt Jenni, and anyone else who will listen to him. So, if you ever want to call and talk to Grant, he would absolutely love it.  He will talk your ear off, so consider yourself warned. :-)

In July, I was cleaning out a closet upstairs and came across picture cards that we used to use for communicating with Grant.  I haven't thought about those cards in a LONG time.  When I found them, I showed them to Joel and we both just shook our heads.  Wow.  What a long ways we have come.  Praise Jesus that our son can talk to us using words.  Praise Jesus for how far Grant has come.  This makes me completely humbled and hopeful as the same time. He has come so far; think of how far he can go!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

I have something to say

Just a few journal entries to document a few things:

New speech from the past couple of weeks:

"I have something to say, Everybody"

used 'us' in proper sentence form

He asked me the other day if he could play on the iPad and said so sweetly, "Please me play on iPad? Me been really good...haven't picked my nose, my booboos, been nice to Kate.  Please, Mommy??"

Oh, ya. He gets it.  He gets it, alright.  And thank you, iPad, for motivating such wonderful behavior in my boy!

While painting his room, he comes in and admires the new color, "Amazing!"  (He has said that word before, but it's still really cool to hear him say it!)

The other night, I asked Joel if he wanted to go to "C-I-C-I" for dinner, as I spelled out CiCi's.  Grant was within earshot and right away said, "CiCi's pizza? I wanna go CiCi's tonight!"  Joel and I just looked at each other and shook our heads.  We haven't been to that place since December last year!  How does he know how to spell anyways???

Tonight, he was mad and said, "Everybodys dumb. Mommy's dumb. Kate's dumb. Daddy's dumb." 

The three of us 'dumb' people just ignored him and continued playing Mario Kart. ;-)

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Come on, Kate!

Earlier today, Grant was impatiently waiting on Kate when he said, "come on, Kate!" that's a new phrase and made me laugh. While we were at Home Depot today, Gant said to a sales lady who was helping us, "hi, ma'am." lol A few other things I didn't think of to mention in the previous post: Earlier this Spring, Grant has started singing. He sang Happy Birthday to me (with help) on my birthday in March and of course it brought me to tears. He is singing words to songs he knows right on time and actually getting it. He loves music so much, and it is way cool hearing him trying to sing. Sometimes he will say a phrase to one of his favorite songs randomly during the day n a sing song voice. Other new phrase: "stop it" :-) Often his new words and phrases crack me up, and often times they make me cry tears of joy!

Monday, June 11, 2012

June 11, 2012

I started this blog with the original intent of documenting victories and milestones that Grant makes day to day, week to week, and month to month.  I also blogged about Kate, of course, and our family in general.  I have been thinking for awhile that I should start blogging again, but what has held me back is pictures.  It takes awhile to post specific pictures that correlate to each blog post, and I may be slightly crazy, but in my humble opinion, a decent blog post should have a few pics to go along with it.  But then time goes on and looking back, I do my best to remember, but I can't always remember all of the little things that Grant has said or started doing.  These little things are important.  They add up to great things over a long time, and what a long ways Grant has come in the past few years!

So, all this to say, I am going to try to start blogging again, but I'm starting out small with just posting about Grant's recent bits of progress he makes each week.  I may not have any cute pictures to go along with it, but at least I will be able to some day look back and see just how far we have come from.  It really is only by the Lord's mercy and grace that he has made the progress he has, and I want God to get the credit for the victories Grant makes whether small or big.

There is so much joy to be had in being a parent: seeing your kid do something new for the first time, gain maturity as they grow older, say cute little things that only a kid would come up with, experience their natural curiosity for life through their eyes...these things Joel and I experience with Kate, and being a parent is so sweet.  With Grant, we don't experience the same joy.  It's a different kind of joy that we experience with Grant.  Hearing him say a new word or phrase for the first time, seeing him do something he's never done before, watching him interact with others like never before, having strangers understand his speech - all of these things bring great joy to our hearts, as we don't take for granted how far he has come and how hard he has worked to get there.  I don't take for granted the 'sweat and tears' that I have poured into him through his home therapy program which has led to constant developmental progress and growth.  Often times, I am brought to tears when he does something new.  Like today, the kids started swimming lessons, and I watched in utter amazement as Grant was doing 'big arms' (arm stroke) while kicking.  He was really swimming! And only after moments of Miss Tina working with him.  With Grant, you just never know what he will 'get' or pick up.  Sometimes its right away, but often times it is days or weeks and sometimes even months later that he will 'get' it.  So, to see him coordinate kicking and arm stroke was a huge victory in my eyes and watching him got me all choked up!

Now onto documenting recent progress.......

New words and phrases Grant has started saying this past month:

"Uh huh"

"Yes" and "Yes!" <----huge!  If you know Grant, you know 'yes' has been "hup!" for YEARS, so him saying "Yes" is so sweet and makes my heart smile every time I hear him say it!

"Can I?"

"I will"

"I have a question."

"I have a next question."

"This is a big guy."  (said to a big guy at the grocery store a few weeks ago!)

"I do"

Other recent progress:

He will ask Kate or me or Joel "will you play with me?" This is huge, too!  For so long, he has been content to play by himself or be coerced into going along with what Kate and I are doing or what the rest of us are doing.  Sometimes willingly, sometimes not.  He hasn't ever sought out playing with any one of us, so this is really cool!  This morning I was going to start a few weeks of summer school, but Grant said so very sweetly, "Mommy, will you play legos with me?"  How could I say 'no' to that??  So we played.  And he sat next to me either building with me or building alongside me, and it was glorious.

Articulation is getting better: People that don't know Grant are understanding most of his speech.  They still give me funny looks, but its becoming more entertaining to me because they are understanding him and it is SO cool to watch the back and forth interaction between him and a 'new friend'.

Things we are working on:

aggression towards sister when not getting his way
spitting when mad
sleeping through the night
obeying the first time
appropriate behavior towards our dog, Roxy
eating meals independently

This post was rather longer than I originally intended, and for future posts I may keep it to just new speech, other recent progress, and things we are working on. I really want to use this blog as a way of keeping track of these three things, so that I can have a means of documenting Grant's new growth and progress.  And who knows, maybe I might just get a few pics in here and there! ;-) 

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Dress Like a Cow Day

A few weeks ago was 'dress up like a cow' day at Chick-fil-A and if you do so, you get to eat your entire meal for free! Earlier that week I planned a lunch date at Chick-fil-A with two of Grant's teachers from school last year not realizing that it was cow day. My first thought was to reschedule knowing that it would be really crazy, but then I went with my second thought and that was that it would be a lot of fun - embrace the craziness! The kids had a lot of fun being cows and really got into it. I think this may be the 1st of many cow days to come! :-)

Four Years Old!

My sweet Kate turned 4 this past Sunday! She is really growing up, sometimes too fast. So on Monday she had her 4 year check up in the morning and then in the afternoon she had a check up with her eye doctor. This check up was to see how her vision and eyes are doing after a couple months of wearing glasses. She is doing well with her glasses and can see SO much better with them. She is severely near sighted and the doctor said she can see clearly about 6 inches in front of her nose! She is still seeing things for the first time and I am so thankful for her glasses! After two doctor appointments in the same day, I thought Kate deserved a nice treat so we stopped at Henry's IceCream shop in Plano. Kate got Dinosaur Egg flavor, but only because it had dinosaur in the name. She is really likes dinosaurs. :-) I settled for chocolate mint, one of my all time favs! Here are a few pics from our little date together:

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

I'm Back!

Wow. Somewhere along the lines I dropped off of blogger planet! Here's what has been happening in our lives since the last post:
- Kate got potty trained.
- Grant, too - Praise the Lord!
- fixed up our house to sell it
- filled an 10x20 storage unit with stuff from our house
- our washer machine flood over half of the house
- put the house on the market, after fully recovering from the flood
- got a contract in two days!
- found a new house
- Kate had another seizure
- we moved!
- celebrated 9 years of marriage!
- I finished up the year working at our church's Mother's Day Out
- Kate finished her 1st year at Mother's Day Out
- Kate had another seizure
- Grant finished 3 1/2 years of preschool at Public School and we said goodbye to his beloved teacher of 3 1/2 years...rough day!
- June 7 began the 1st official day of summer and of me back to working with Grant every day all day
- and more!

It's been non-stop the past few months and I'm ready for life to slow down quite a bit. Having both kids home over the summer will definitely help with that, I know. The days seem much, much longer and I know we will have to be creative in coming up with ways to help me get through it! I'm working with Grant and Kate doing our home based therapy program and it feels great to be 'back in the swing' of things with program. It was really hard to get anything done with Grant with everything else going on, and pretty much since December I have hardly worked with him at all, I'm sad to say. However, we did accomplish potty training with Grant - which is HUGE - and we worked on behavior quite a bit. I am really encouraged so far: this is Day 3 of working with them and more than one time today, both kids asked to "work!" How can I say no to that!

Last summer I mostly concentrated on working just with Grant. Kate could do most of the activities but I didn't make her. Most of the time she was happy to play by herself and have her own time. This summer I can tell is going to be quite different - and for the better! Kate loves working with me with Grant and just by herself with me. It is awesome! I am so encouraged by her eagerness to learn and to work hard. Her speech is behind quite a bit - not severe like Grant but still behind - and so I am working with her right along with Grant.

Hopefully, I will start blogging more regularly and get some pictures up soon! Happy Summer!

Sunday, December 6, 2009


Thanksgiving this year was a bit nontraditional for us: we went camping! Since Joel and I have been together we have not been gone one time during a holiday. With both of our families here in town it makes it easy to stay home. So it was a little different being gone over Thanksgiving. The last time we went camping was over 3 years ago and Kate was barely 3 months old. (I know, what was I thinking?!?)
The best part about camping this time was to see Grant and Kate enjoy camping. They loved playing in the tent and being outside all day. We got flashlights for them before we left and they loved playing with those, too. They still play with them everyday and Kate's sleeping bag is still in her room next to her bed. I'm not sure if it will ever make it back to the garage! I guess you could say that she is somewhat possessive over her "stuff"!
Grant rode his bike the whole time when he was not eating or sleeping. Kate rode her bike some, too, but also played on the swings and ran around chasing the ducks.
We went with a couple of our family friends from church and also Daniel and Christina, my brother and sister. We've been camping with my brother and sister before and it's always fun when they go with us. I didn't take very many pictures, though, so this is mostly all of them:

Kate and Jack

Within minutes of getting our tent set up, Kate was inside getting all of her "stuff" just how she wanted it. She played in the tent for over an hour just having fun with everything you see in the picture. I only brought a few toys but she just loved being inside the tent.

"tent time" before bed on the 2nd night

Christina and I bundled up around the campfire, trying to stay warm!

It's not everyday that one gets to go camping with her piano student! ;-)

Turkey Trot '09!

The kids and I walked the Turkey Trot this year with my older sister, Jennifer, and two of my brothers, David and Daniel. Although it was pretty chilly when we first woke up, it made for a great day by the time we started walking. We bundled the kids up and they had a great time. At one point Grant was getting restless so we switched strollers and then had him walk with us for a little bit. He loved that and it was great for him to use up some of his energy! He was running to keep up with us since Jen and I were walking at a quick pace. This is my 3rd time to participate in the Trot and it is always so much fun! Hopefully next year I will be in better shape and will be able to jog the 5k like I did last year!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

My Big Girl!

I took Kate to get her first "real" haircut a couple of weeks ago. I say real because this is her first haircut at a salon. I've cut her hair a handful of times but I have had a hard time getting it cut straight because surprisingly so she won't sit still long enough! Also, cutting curly hair can be tricky when it comes to layers. I have tried but I was ready to step aside and let the professional take over! So I took her to my hair lady, Rosa, who is amazing. She was able to even it up and put in some long layers. I love how it turned out and I love even more how still Kate was the whole time. She was like a statue and looked very sleepy. I kept asking her if she was sleepy and she said seriously, "No."
Every now and then she would look at me and say, "Mommy?"

so sleepy!

Can you see how serious she looks?? This is how she was the whole time!

Family Fun at the Park

After Grant and Kate's last baseball game we went to the park and had a really sweet time with the kids. The weather was overcast and slightly cool which left the park pretty much to ourselves. We didn't have too much going on that day and so we didn't worry about the time and just had some good old fashioned fun! I wish we had more days and times like this. I'm finding that sometimes times like this just need to be planned and that it is ok!

Buddy League!

It's been two weeks since Grant's last baseball game with Buddy League. He only had 3 games because the other 3 were rained out. Kate got to play in the last two because a lot of kids didn't show up. She absolutely loved playing baseball and it was so fun to watch the two of them "playing" baseball! Thank you to our sweet friends and family who came out to watch them with us! It really meant a lot to Joel and I and to Grant and Kate. I can't wait until the Spring when baseball starts back up again. For now, here are some pictures from this season:
Thank you, Aunt Jenni for taking the group shot!

Nana with Grant and Kate, who is apparently enjoying her snack. ;-)

Grant is getting his trophy at the end of the last game.

Uncle Daniel was Grant's buddy.

Aunt Christina was Kate's buddy.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Country Carnival!

On Halloween we went to our church's carnival from 5:30-8:30 and we had so much fun! The weather was perfect and the kids behaved themselves for the most part. We were there almost the whole time, which I did not anticipate the kids to make it that long. This was really the first year that both of them had any interest in playing all of the different games. Grant has always liked the fire truck and bounce houses but everything else he could care less for! So Joel took Grant to the bounce houses and I took Kate around to play games. After each game, she got a piece or two of candy and ate it by the time she got to the next game. It seemed like she always had a piece of candy in her mouth the whole night! Towards the end of the evening, I did tell her that she had had enough and needed to stop eating it. She just kind of looked at me like, "Huh? Why should I stop eating my candy?" But she was being so cute that I didn't mind too much. This night only comes once a year so it's not too bad, right? ;-)
Romo, dog owner, Dalmatian, and a BumbleBee

Nana stopped by on her way home from work to see the kids in their costumes.

trying to play and game while eating candy. 8-)

Kate really liked getting a bumble bee painted on her cheek!

still eating candy!

Grant, so happy in his Dalmatian costume. He loves it so much!

Early in October I talked to Grant and Kate about what they wanted to dress up as and each of them looked through the Party City catalog. Grant didn't take too long until he saw the Dalmatian costume and declared that was what he wanted. Kate took her time and looked intently at each costume. When she saw the bumble bee, she said, "Bubble bee!!!"
So that was that and I they really surprised me because anytime we talked about it from that point on, they not one time changed their minds! Kate's costume was easy: bought it at Party City as a set with all of the pieces. Grant's, on the other hand, wasn't. The Dalmatian costume was too small for him and I couldn't find one that was big enough. So I decided to make his costume. At first I was going to do something simple that involved white shirt and pants and felt circles sewn on, but I could not find white pants anywhere! So I went to Hobby Lobby to buy material to make white pants and low and behold, I found Dalmatian print fabric! So then I decided to make pajama top and bottoms for his costume. This was he could wear them for more than just Saturday night. It was a tad bit stressful making it, as it wasn't until Friday evening that I found the material and decided to make it. And then I didn't get finished until 4pm Saturday, an hour and a half before the carnival started!

The best part of it all was on Saturday morning. During breakfast I showed Grant the Dalmatian print fabric and I said, "Grant, what does this look like?" He looked at it, smiled, and said "Ne ma neigh!" (That is how he says Dalmatian.) Of course, I was so excited and happy that he knew exactly what it was. I showed him his pants that I made the night before and the pieces that I was going to use for his shirt and he payed attention to me. Throughout the morning, he looked at me and said, "Thank you, Mama!" So sweet and definitely made it all worth it!!! He loved wearing it Saturday night and was very proud to tell everyone what he was. He's worn it several times since then and I love seeing him running around it in. Makes my heart smile! :-)

Grandma's Visit

4 Generation picture: My Grandma Bev, my mom, me, and Kate! (and my two sisters, Jen and Christina!)

My Grandma Bev came to visit all the way from Seattle and these are pictures from our lunch at the Chocolate Angel. We had a nice time and it was really great to see my grandma. I haven't seen in her over 5 years and she got to meet Kate for the first time!

Fun at the Farm!

A few weeks ago, Grant had a school field trip to Owen's Farm. I was able to go with him and it was fun hanging out with him and his class. We started with feeding the goats, which Grant thought was pretty cool. Then we went on a hay ride, which Grant really liked. In this picture he was signing and saying "eat!" as we saw the horses eating grass. Then we saw some horses, ate lunch, took pictures in the pumpkin patch and then picked out a pumpkin to take home. All in all it was a great day and it wasn't until the end that Grant was wearing out and getting really whiney. But soon enough he was back on the bus and couldn't be happier. He LOVES riding on the bus and smiled all the way to the farm and back. The last picture says it all by his smile!

Late night phone calls...

Every night Grant goes to bed with his dog, phone, blanket, bear, Woody, Baa, and Flops. The only time he doesn't go to bed with any one of these is when he his behavior has been really bad at school or home. One night when I checked on Grant before going to bed, this is how I found him, except his eyes weren't squinting. I had to turn the light on to get a good picture and the light made him squint his eyes. If you look closely, you'll see his phone in the "talking" position. 8-)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

After 9 months of doing NACD....

.....this is what we get from Grant: (in the most whiniest little kid voice ever, btw)




He just started saying these phrases over the last couple of weeks and today he said, - for the 1st time ever - "butidonwannagotobed." I just looked at him shaking my head and chuckling. I really am just shocked sometimes at what comes out of his mouth. Yesterday when Joel and I were working with him, he said to us, "butIdonwantowork" and we just looked at each other and said, "Did he really just say that???"
These sentences are called "chunks" which means several words said as one word, not as separate, or individual words. But I am thinking we are not going to work on "de-chunking" these sentences! 8-)
He's going to have to be a little more creative if he thinks saying these things to us is going to get him out of working with me or out of going to bed!

Grant, you are a silly boy and I love you so much!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Day at the Fair!

A week ago Monday Joel and I made a last minute decision to take the kids to the Texas State Fair. We have briefly talked about it but didn't really decide one way or the other until 9am that morning. Joel was already planning on taking half day of vacation that afternoon and Grant was off of school Monday and Tuesday so if we were going to go, Monday was going to be the best day to do so. Joel and I have been several times before, actually on our 3rd date we went to the fair! But we haven't taken the kids before. Maybe Grant when he was a baby but honestly I can't remember. It's one of those "did we take Grant? ..."

So the kids and I got ready while Joel was on his way home from work and when he came home, we all left. We started out at the Midway and Grant and Kate rode a few rides. Grant and Joel went down the big slide first thing and Grant was really upset that we wouldn't let him go again. Once he realized that there were more rides to go on and that he was going to get to ride on some of them, he was fine. Poor guy, life is rough sometimes, huh? ;-)

Their favorite ride was the "choo choo". They kept talking about it throughout the rest of the day and because Joel and I thought they were so cute (and good) we ended the day with them riding the "choo choo" one more time. I have to say, it was a lot of fun as parents watching our kids have so much fun on the rides. We don't do things like this very much so it was pretty neat for us to experience.

After riding rides, we went to a dog show. Both kids are nuts about dogs so it makes sense to take your dog crazy kids to a dog show, right? It was probably boring for them but they did like watching the dog catch all of the frisbies and jump in the water. It was only 20 minutes so it was done at the same time the kids were done. Worked out perfect!

After the dog show, we went to the petting zoo and as we were walking up towards the entrance we hear a kid say, "Hi Grant!" Who could it be but our good friends from church! It was so crazy meeting up with them and it was really cool because we got to hang out with them for the whole afternoon!

We had such a great time at the fair and the weather was nice, too. It was overcast and threatened to rain but it really was nice. Joel and I were really proud at how well Grant and Kate did. I'm not saying that they were perfect, but overall they were pretty good and they really liked being at the fair. Joel and I had a good time, too. We definitely made a great memory and I can't wait to scrapbook our day at the fair! :-)

I won't post all of the pictures because I took so many but here are the highlights:

Joel and Grant coming down

the "choo choo"

our good friends, The Scott Family!

see how cute the baby piggies are?

"don't think I'm taking a nap; I'm only sleeping for 5 minutes." (she really did only sleep for 5 minutes - little stinker!)