Thursday, December 20, 2007

Meet Henry

Henry is our butler. No, we don't have a "real" butler, but he serves us well. Henry is about Payton's height and holds her snacks well. They have multiple meetings per day. Payton loves Henry.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Payton got assaulted at daycare

Last week, Payton got scratched really bad at daycare, scabs and all. The first picture above shows her face soon after it happened (and covered in neosporin) and the pictures below show her face about two weeks later. I'm so mad! These parents at daycare don't cut their kids fingernails and now Payton is marked because of it. I really think it is going to scar. It is a lot deeper than it looks ... GRR!

Payton's New Favorite Words

The past couple weeks, Payton has picked up a couple new words ... "wow" and "no".

The first time she said "no" was when I was telling her "no" because she was throwing Cheerios all over the floor. She then looked at me, pointed her finger at me (wonder where she got that) and yelled, "No!" I was cracking up and so excited to hear her say that. Isn't that usually one of the first words kids say? Not Payton! Now she loves to tell the dog and her brother "no" all the time. Even her daycare teachers have told us that she tells the other kids in her classroom "no" ... too funny.

I'm not really sure where along the way she picked up "wow", although it has become more evident lately when we have seen Christmas lights. She sort of whispers it ... "wowww" ... and I think it is because I sort of whisper it to her, as if telling her "look at that". Now we can look at the ceiling lights or a chandelier and get a "wowww" for that. Love her! :)

Ho Ho Ho

We took the kids to see Santa over the weekend. It didn't go over so great with Payton. This was the first year that Mason wanted to sit on his lap and tell him what he wanted for Christmas. On the list ... transformer, firetruck, Brett Favre helmet. Here is a picture of the momentous event ...

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Beatitudes for People with Special Needs

BLESSED ARE YOU who take time to listen to difficult speech, for you help us to know that if we persevere we can be understood.

BLESSED ARE YOU who walk with us in public places, and ignore the stares of strangers, for in your friendship we feel good to be ourselves.

BLESSED ARE YOU who never bid us to "hurry up" and, more blessed, you who do not snatch our tasks from our hands to do them for us, for often we need time rather than help.

BLESSED ARE YOU who stand beside us as we enter new and untried ventures, for our unsuredness will be outweighed by the times when we surprise ourselves and you.

BLESSED ARE YOU who ask for our help and realize our giftedness for our greatest need is to be needed.

BLESSED ARE YOU who help us with the graciousness of Christ, for often we need the help we cannot ask for.

BLESSED ARE YOU when, by all things, you assure us that what makes us individuals is not our particular disability or difficulty but our beautiful God-given personhood which no handicapping condition can confine.

REJOICE AND BE EXCEEDINGLY GLAD for your understanding and love have opened doors for us to enjoy life to its full and you have helped us believe in ourselves as valued and gifted people.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Payton and her baby

Payton has recently started getting really interested in her baby doll. She is so cute ... she sits there and loves on her baby, kissing her and hugging her.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Another Conversation with Mason

We had sloppy joes for dinner tonight. Mason was eating a little slow and I told him to hurry up because I had a treat for him when he was done. He was still eating when I took Payton up for a bath, so we sort of forgot about his treat. After his bath, he asked me where his treat was. I told him it was downstairs waiting for him. We went downstairs and I told him to sit in his chair as I was unwrapping an ice cream sandwich ...

Mason: I fink [think] I will save my treat until morning.
Me: Are you sure?
Mason: Yes, it is 1 o'clock [it really was about 9 o'clock] and it is time for bed.
Me: Okay.

Mason then went upstairs to bed. He cracks me up. It was like he was the parent and I was the kid.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Mason Funny

Kyle takes the kids to daycare every day, and I pick them up. I called Kyle this morning before he left the house to remind him to take a check to daycare to pay tuition. He called me later to tell me about his conversation with Mason after hanging up the phone with me ...

Mason: Who was that?
Kyle: Mommy.
Mason: What did she want?
Kyle: She wanted to tell me to take a check to daycare to pay for your school.
Mason: Ohhh, pay monies for my school?
Kyle: Yeah, we have to pay money for you to go to school.

Kyle continues getting the kids stuff together so they can leave the house. In the meantime, Mason went upstairs and came back downstairs to leave for school. When they got to school, Mason held out his tightly fisted hand and said ...

Mason: Should we go give this to Ms. April?
Kyle: What is it?

Mason opened his hand to reveal 8 cents that he must have gotten from his piggy bank when he went upstairs prior to leaving the house.

Kyle: Aww, thanks buddy, but I'll pay for it this time.
Mason: Ok.

Mason put his money in his cubby and the rest is history. Kyle said it melted his heart and it melts mine too. He really is such a good kid.


Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Momentous day for us ...

Payton has Down syndrome ... this we know. Payton has a speech delay, thanks to that extra chromosome. I feel like I have been beating my head against a brick wall in trying to get her to sign. Since she was about 10 months old or so, I have been signing "eat", "drink" and "more" with her on a fairly regular basis. Although she has not signed back to me, I know she understands what I am signing to her.

The sign for "more" is to touch the tips of your fingers together (bad explanation, I know). A lot of kids will clap as their way of signing "more" and while Payton has clapped during mealtime, I have never been able to really associate it with her saying she wants "more". Well, today I was able to associate it. I asked her verbally if she wanted more while I signed it and I kept asking her, trying to get her to sign. SHE DID IT!!! Several times, on que! OMG I kissed her about a thousand times! It is such a great feeling to have your child communicate back with you, especially when you have worked so hard to get there.

Aside from signing, Payton has some words! Here is a list of the words she says (some of them perhaps only her father and I understand) and correctly associates:

Hi (this is her favorite word right now)
All done

I think that is it (that we can interpret, at least), but it is a fabulous list if I must say so myself! Her development has been phenomonal and I'm praying that her communication continues to flourish!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Sleep Study

Payton had a sleep study last night. I pushed for one to be done and her ENT obliged. I have heard from various sources that all kids with Down syndrome should have a sleep study done by age three. Various other sources may not agree with that, but it made sense to me so I scheduled it.

Payton fell asleep on the way to the sleep study (it was at Children's Hospital in DC), so we were not off to a very good start, considering she was supposed to fall asleep when we got there. We ended up having to wait for probably an hour for the room to be cleaned (go figure), so luckily I had that time to try to wear her out. She was not very happy with the tech when he was hooking her wires up. I decided to give her a bottle (yes, she still gets that dang bottle at bedtime) to try to distract her. She eventually got used to him prodding her, bless her heart. There were wires attached to her scalp, her forehead, her cheeks and her chest. She also had a nasal canula and a sticker that was a microphone under her nose to monitor her breathing and sounds. She tossed and turned all night, all the while tangled in wires. I didn't sleep much either, so we were happy to get out of there in the morning! We should find out the results in about 2-3 weeks.

Here she is ...

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Shawn and Taniya's Wedding

Some friends of ours, Shawn and Taniya, got married last night. Kyle was an usher in the wedding and Payton was the flower girl. On Friday night at the rehearsal, Payton did great going down the aisle, throwing her little rose petals. Kyle was at the end of the aisle waiting for her, so she was happy to walk to him. During the wedding, she took about three steps down the aisle and then her music sensor turned on. She stopped in her tracks, got a big grin on her face and started dancing. OMG she was too funny. Her version of dancing is bouncing up and down in place. She just stood there ... and stood there ... and stood there, dancing away. Kyle eventually had to walk down the aisle to get her. Everyone thought she was adorable in her little dress. Here are some pictures from the day ... COMING SOON!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

School Pictures

The kids just had pictures taken at school. I'm usually not very thrilled about them because they always turn out horrible. This time wasn't so bad ... not necessarily what I would have done backdrop wise, but not too bad nonetheless. Actually, I think the closeup of Mason turned out pretty good!

Nice sneakers, eh? LOL

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Support Down Syndrome Lately?

Our Buddy Walk is in exactly one week. Ahh! It has come up so quick! Payton's Posse has increased their fundraising goal by $1,000 from what was raised last year. We are on our way, but we also have a bit to go. Click here if you would like to donate to our sweet baby girl! Here is our little angel ... ain't she cute?

Our little flower girl ...

Some friends of ours asked if Payton would be the flower girl in their wedding. (insert tears here) We were so touched! The wedding is coming up the end of this month and it should be interesting to see if she makes it down the aisle. Either way, she will be the cutest little thang there! Here are some pics of her trying on her dress ...

Mason can spell his name!

So a few weeks ago I posted about how I was worried about Mason not being able to spell his name or get through the alphabet. Well, I'm not sure if he just doesn't want us to know that he can do it or what, but I have learned that he can do it. He doesn't like to be put on the spot, but if you get him in the right moment, he will do it. Further proof (for my own mindset) is that today we were decorating a frame with foam stickers. I gave him some alphabet stickers so he could put his name on the frame. I told him to start with M ... and he peeled the M right off. Then A ... peeled the A off, too! Same thing for S O N! That little stinker! I'm so proud of him and I really think he has come so far since things changed at his school. That is a good thing. ;) Oh, one more thing ... isn't he the most handsome little boy you have ever seen? What, you think I'm bias? No way...

Mason Funny

You know how they say watch what you say? Sigh. The other day I was laying in my bed with Mason trying to take a nap. Our dog ran into the bedroom and Kyle was chasing after her. Mason then says, "Get that friggin dog outta here!" (insert bulging eyes here) OMG!!! Kyle and I were dying inside, telling Mason at the same time that what he said was inappropriate. Ahh, life as we know it!

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Win a pair of Vincent Rainboots!

Prince Vince over at Prince Vince Meets the World is giving away a pair of Vincent Rainboots! Click here to read all about it! Hurry, because the contest ends on October 10, 2007.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Payton Update

Today I took Payton to the GI for a checkup. We will be continuing her on one solutab of Prevacid a day and we will follow up after her 2nd birthday. She is almost 21 months old and weighed in today at 25 pounds. She measured 31 inches long.

I also asked about allergy testing and they told me to ask her pediatrician. I am interested in allergy testing because there has been a lot of talk lately about diet affecting behavior and development in general. I am very interested in learning more about this, and finding out specifically if Payton has a sensitivity, or even an intolerance, to wheat, etc.

Cute story ... Up until now, I have mostly kept Payton in soft sole shoes because they are supposed to be so highly recommended for new walkers. After seeing Pat Winders (one of Payton's physical therapists) a few weeks back, she recommended that we now get Payton in some supportive shoes with inserts to force her to roll her feet correctly. They roll in a tiny bit right now. The supportive shoes will also ultimately cause her to bring her legs in closer when she is walking. So, we put her little pair of size 5 Nike sneakers on her and she is loving them! She is cruising all over the place with those things on ... then she will stop, look down at her feet, pull on the laces and then keep on cruising along. So cute.

Friday, September 7, 2007


Mason's school just combined the older three year olds with the four year olds and even though his birthdate was too late to move up, they moved him anyway (because he is so bright, of course). I was a little concerned that they may be trying to advance him too quickly, given that he cannot even get all the way through the alphabet yet (this is a problem).

Well, his teacher has done nothing but rave about how well he is doing with the older kids. He is one of the few kids who follow directions (I'm still trying to find that side of him) and he does much better on his assignments than some of the four year olds. For example, they were doing worksheets where they had to trace lines. Mason was not only the first one to complete the assignment, he was the only one who actually traced the lines instead of drawing random lines.

This makes me smile, because I have really been feeling like he should be doing more than he is doing and that his school has been failing him. We recently got a new principal, so I'm hoping these changes are for the better!

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Photo time with Mommy

We have been so busy lately, that my photo taking and blogging have been lacking. So now it is catch up time! I started out taking pictures of Payton ...

And then I asked her to show me where her nose was ... and she did! (You don't understand ... we have been working on this with her for forever!!)

And then of course her brother had to pop in and show us that he knew where his eyes were ...

And here is some video of my girl dancing, playing peek-a-boo and waving bye bye!

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Here doggy, doggy!

So ... Payton is obsessed with the dog's kennel. She takes the dog's bed out and replaces it with ... well ... herself, of course! Today Mason decided he would join her ...

After getting them out of the kennel, we went outside to play on their playground ...

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Sad news...

My grandfather passed away today. He has been struggling the past few weeks after having a stroke and then a heart attack. He was 91 years old and lived a great life, but it is still so hard. Payton and I will fly to Florida tomorrow with Auntie Kristie for the funeral. We decided to leave the boys home because flights are so expensive. Here are a few pictures of us with Grandpa over the past few years ...

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Mason's first visit to the dentist ...

A few weeks ago, Mason saw the dentist for the first time. He was a bit apprehensive and ended up sitting in my lap for his cleaning. He did well, though, and even kept his mouth open, which I wasn't sure he would do. Here is a picture (yes, I was that dorky mom in the middle of the dentist office with my camera ... LOL) ...

Unfortunately, he had three small cavities that needed to be filled, and they also wanted to seal his teeth. So yesterday Kyle took him back for his fillings. Two of them were so small they were able to do them without numbing him, but the third required numbing. Kyle said he sat through it like a champ and that Mason was quick to remind him that they would be going shopping for Power Rangers for a reward.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

So the kid has more athletic ability than me ...

Mason's athletic ability is pretty amazing for a 3 1/2 year old, if you ask me. He is beyond the tee ... here he is showing off his talents (minus the few balls that he misses ... must be the pitcher's fault) ...