...And in the air, the fireflies, our only light in paradise. We'll show the world that they were wrong, and teach them all to sing along; singing Amen I, I'm alive. Amen I, I'm alive...

- Nickelback, If Everyone Cared

For All The Right Reasons Album

And I'm singing Aaa-ayyy-men, I'm alive!

William Leonidas November 12th, 2009
My only regret is that I cried so many tears while I waited for you.

"...I'll try ~ but it's so hard to believe. I'll try ~ but I can't see what you see. I'll try and try to understand the distance between the love I feel ~ the thing I fear ~ and every single dream. I can finally see it. Now I have to believe all those precious stories. All the world is made of faith ~ and trust ~ and pixie dust. So I'll try ~ because I finally believe. I'll try ~ because I can see what you see. I'll try, I'll try ~ to fly..."

Jonatha Brooke "I'll try"

Fear thou not, for I am with thee; be not dismayed, for I am thy God; I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. Isaiah 41:10

Now the word of the Lord came to me saying, "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you..." Jeremiah 1:4-5

For Thou didst form my inward parts; Thou didst weave me in my mother's womb. I will give thanks to Thee for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; wonderful are Thy works, and my soul knows it very well. Psalms 139:13-14

Monday March 5th, 2010

So Why Stinkerie?

It's simple, really. It's the first thing I whispered against my newborn little Dumpling's temple as I held him alone for that very first time. "There's my Little Stinkerie." And all was right with the world as I brushed my lips across his delicate dewy soft newborn-pink skin and sniffed at his sparse smattering of downy soft hair. Corny and sappy, huh? I can't help it when describing my new Little Puppy. But don't get used to it - I have been told I am "irreverent."

Anyway, it just came out and he's been Stinkerie ever since. As well as Stink Pie, Stink Pot, Stinkey Pete, Little Stinks, Stinks, Puppy, Ducky, Baby, Baby Head, Baby Head Jenkins, Jack, Jack-Jack, Jackie Boy, Jax, Snork, Snorkis, Snorkle, Billy Boy, Billy Bob, Bobby Sue, Billy-Joe-Jim-Bob, Will, Willie, Willister, and the name given by my mentor turned friend Beth - Snake. When I write to her I call him either The Snakester or Slither! And of course, Dumpling, because he is my Little Dumpling - warm and soft and comforting. It's alright to combine comfort food with baby names, right? Have you ever watched the movie Where the Heart Is? If you have, you'll know why I mention this in my defense!

Long story short, you're likely to encounter any one or more of these names in a single post. Because I can. It's my blog!

Something to Consider

Bad decisions make good stories.

Something to Think About

With any pregnancy, there are concerns. With any child, there are worries. When you have a diagnosis of Down syndrome, you know what to worry about. You know what to look for. You have a plan of action. With your typical child, there is no limit to the things that can 'go wrong' or 'happen.' There's no place to focus your worry and concerns. 'IT' will always be out there, waiting. You'll always be on guard. Even when the child is 55 and has grandchildren. With Down syndrome we have a battle plan. With Down syndrome, there is a finite number of things that can go awry. With a typical child, there's isn't. It's a crap shoot. I'm sticking with the Ds and taking the other two back to the hospital for a refund.

Head Above Water

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Sunday, January 2, 2011

It's Snowing!

Yes, there are pictures, but first...It's snowing! Yep. In Southern California. Ordinarily I would be overjoyed at snow. Today, however, I am stressed out of my tree and I really super duper need to work tonight. Times are desperate. But working means a 60 mile drive to the valley. In the snow. I do not like driving in snow. Actually, it's not the driving in snow so much that I don't like, it's all the slipping around I don't enjoy, and other drivers getting way to close that I don't like. If there were no other drivers on the road, I'd be more comfortable. Except for when I need the lines of the others driver's cars to follow. Or when I get stuck somewhere or drive onto the soft berm. Then other drivers would come in handy. And even if I don't get work tonight, I have a job interview about 45 miles that same direction tomorrow morning at 11:30. And I already know that the freeway I need to take there is closed and all the traffic is being diverted onto my freeway. That's gonna be fun. Not so much the going, but the coming home. At least it will be daylight.

My resolve to encourage my loving and obedient children to watch a signing times video every day of Christmas break, thereby learning something, has come to a grinding halt. There's been so much grousing on the part of The Oldest, and sheer and deliberate inattention of the part of The Middle, that I threw a fit today and sent them out of the room, saying that Willie and I would learn it and when he later tried to speak with them and they didn't understand, well, they'd have themselves to thank. When they each came back into the living room wanting something, I simply signed, I'm sorry. I don't understand! Sorry. Eventually The Oldest caught on. She signed "I'm sorry, Mom." I signed to her to please make me some coffee, and she did. Next, she tried to ask if she could do something. Again with the signing, I'm sorry. I don't understand. Maybe if you sign... She's a quick study. She quickly asked in pigeon toed sign if she could please take a dog outside to the front yard. So I asked Why, and then encouraged the motions to play in the snow. While I had a captive audience I did my darnedest, Who's going outside to play in the snow? Made her spell out her own name and Sophie's and said again Why? She signed "To play in the snow." And I made her repeat the whole thing in semi-cohesive flow. And then I signed No! Oh yes, I did. Why? Because you didn't say please. So she signed "please" and I signed Please what? And again with the entire sentence, "May I please take Sophie outside in front to play in the snow?" So I signed that she could, to wear a coat, a hat, and shoes and socks, because it would be cold and snowy, because it's winter. Because I can. I've been watching the danged videos.

And that's not the only thing that's come to a grinding halt. I just called work, and they have nothing for me tonight. Which is going to suck huge when the error I made has my bank bouncing stuff tomorrow. Like the electric bill. Especially since our heater is broken and we're using space heaters for warmth. In the snow. Dang, I hope 2011 turns out to be a better year! Ah yes, the snow. It's really coming down now. Sticking and everything. So even if I'd gotten work tonight, it's not a given that I'd get to work. Or that I'd get home in the morning. Or that the CHP wouldn't detain me along the way with lots of other drivers until the route to return home, having gone nowhere really, was plowed. I hope, I hope, I hope to get some photos of the pristine majesty tomorrow, since it's supposed to snow all night, before the neighborhood stray pets walk all over our yard! Then again, if it truly does snow all night, like 'they' say it will, it won't matter if the desert foxes play chase on our front lawn, their little paws will not mar the expanse of white. That is, if it truly does snow as heavily as 'they' say it will.

Also at a grinding halt is Jack's willingness to eat food. He did pretty well with mashed potatoes and mashed up sweet potatoes, but while he's no where near ready for table food, he's also suddenly unwilling to eat baby food. He wants bottled food. I've been cooking tiny little pasta called Agini Di Pepe and adding it to the veggies he likes, and adding things like rice crispies and plain cooked rice to the fruits he likes. I have not tried adding anything to the meats, because, well it's meat, and I have no ideas there. And besides, it's already kinda pasty and it has enough texture on it's own. And he's given me no grief over eating chicken and beef. Still hates the turkey. Then again, I have a sudden passionate hatred of turkey. Might be the brand I'm buying. I still like it from the deli in a sandwich, especially with Swiss cheese and avocado, but I barely ate any on Thanksgiving and I firmly boycotted it for Christmas. I cooked it alright, roasted it nice and brown and crispy on the outside, moist and tender on the inside, and took one whiff and turned my own nose up at it. Which is not to say that I hold the same hatred for turkey gravy. While the Thanksgiving gravy held much to be desired, I turned out my classic perfect turkey gravy for Christmas dinner, which if I do say so myself, was good enough to eat with a spoon. When my turkey gravy turns out good, it's really good. And it's good often enough that I have said to myself on more than one occasion, "Self, this year we're going to thin this out just a little bit and add chopped up turkey with some fresh veggies and have creamy turkey soup in a few days!" But that has never happened. By the time we've all eaten even awesome turkey gravy all over stuffing, mashed potatoes, and turkey for an entire week, the last thing I want to look at is more turkey anything. And that includes my awesome gravy. Next year, providing 2011 turns out to be prosperous, I'll roast turkey for Thanksgiving but for Christmas I might try my hand at a crown roast of prime rib. We'll see.

I digress. I offer these pictures of proof that I have attempted to make a valiant effort to feed this child solid food.

This is the "Not gonna open my mouth" maneuver:
This is his "Reaching up to grab the spoon" maneuver:Followed by the "I'm only gonna open my mouth a little bit to see just how nuts I can make her while she holds both of my hands down" maneuver:Quickly followed up by the head braced with one hand maneuver:While he attempts to grab both of my arms maneuver:Just...a..little...more...leverage...on...that...forehead......and the food is in and his lips are closed!Until he spits it all back out again!And here is the equivalent of his 50 yard field goal "I won!" happy dance. I'd love to post the laid out flat with my right foot on his torso, left foot on his forehead, one hand prying his lips apart while the other shovels in the food maneuvers, but The Girlie, who acted as my camera man for this adventurous little foray into feeding time fun has her limits. She flat refused to be a party to providing photographic evidence for all that followed.


Tara said...

Oh, you are GOOD! I LOL'd about the signing with to your kids. I think I need you to come and live with me and force ME to sign. I'm so great at teaching Eon all the signs I know...I just don't know that many. I have little patience to sit in front of the tv and watch Rachel sing/sign. I find my mind wandering to whatever possessed her to decide to wear that particular outfit in every video.

Holly W said...

I love the signing...tough love mama...but who won? loving it..
and what a stubborn little brat Willie's being...haha!!!

Anonymous said...

Wait!? You can sign will you please make me some coffee? Those are some signs I need to learn for sure! Way to hang in there mama and Happy New year to you and your family!

Jen Currier said...

I'm so impressed that you signed ALL of that from a Signing Times DVD...you must have a different one than me! (I've got eat, more, bird, sleep...not "May I please take the dog out into the snow to play?" You're awesome!!!)

Has Willie always been difficult with the solid foods or is this new? Maybe try giving him his own spoon (or two) while you're trying to feed him so his hands are busy? Elijah gets fascinated with the bib and won't eat if he's examining the SUPER-FASCINATING BIB. Who knew they were so amazing? LOL!

Tracy said...

Tara ~ I have to agree...why not mix it up a bit with some less visually offensive outfits?

Holly ~ Did you just call my kid a brat? Really? Because he SO IS! The kid already has a stubborn streak a mile wide!

Libby ~ I'll add a short post to a good online asl dictionary. There's a good baby signs section and a pretty extensive regular section. It shows you an actual person signing, but I have to wonder at some of the ladie's expressions...they look like I'm bothering them, like they get rousted out of bed every time I log on! Go there just to see the odd ball looks on some of their faces!

Jen ~ It's a new thing! It was driving me nuts! He's always been so willing to eat, even if it accomplished little. Dr Elaine (his SLP) was also nearing her wits end when she asked if I had anything really cold to try. Jello tapioca from the fridge did the trick! So we're serving fruits cold from the fridge and warming veggies and meats...much better! Also, Willie is fascinated with his bib too! And the weird thing is, they're mostly plain solid color bibs with no design! It must be a Ds thing...or boys named Willie and Eli...or just a really seriously cute little boys thing, huh?