31 for 21 Day 17.  She makes us smile.

Lanie has this little giggle that sounds like a squeaky toy and it cracks us up.

She can get a smile out of any of us anytime she wants.

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She’s got us all wrapped around her little finger and we don’t even care.

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We all just love her so much.

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Filed under: 31 for 21Down syndromeLanie

31 for 21. Day 16. This one is about Maggie. 

This is a picture of Maggie with an absolutely giant birthday cake.

Today is not her birthday. She turns three tomorrow but we celebrated her birthday today because our family is always whole on Sundays. We don’t really do huge birthday parties but we ended up with 21 1/2 people here and 8 pizzas and a giant cake. It was awesome.  Maggie thought it was Christmas. 

She got a pink balance bike and I asked her if I could have it.  She quickly said no.  Then she smiled and gave Lanie a kiss on the head and said, but Lanie can have it.  

It was so sweet.  

It was a great day and now I’m exhausted and ready for sleep.
Goodnight.  

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31 for 21 Day 15. I Love Lucy.

When I started blogging through October for Down Syndrome Awareness Month I mentioned that I would probably have some posts that weren’t all about Lanie. This is one of them because I feel like it would be wrong of me not to blog about Lucy on National I Love Lucy Day.

Yes, today happens to be National I Love Lucy Day and I mentioned this to Lucy yesterday because I thought she’d think it was funny.

She absolutely fell in love with the idea.

And because I could not squash her enthusiasm, and because I actually do love Lucy, we watched a couple of episodes of I Love Lucy this morning and then I took my personal Lucy along with me on all of my adventures today.

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She thoroughly enjoyed just hanging together at Sam’s football game even though it rained on us and it was windy and our hair was damp and blowing around in our faces and there were ants and Lanie was a little bit fussy and all of us were hungry.

And just to wrap this short post up properly, here’s a picture of Lanie.

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Because babies who sleep with their butt’s in the air are totes adorbs, people.


If you want to participate in the 10th annual 31 for 21 grab the button on my sidebar.  Big Blueberry Eyes is hosting it and you can start anytime in October so don’t worry if you’re late. You don’t have to have a child with Down syndrome to participate.  You don’t even have to know a person with Down syndrome to participate.  Really, you don’t even have to write about Down syndrome. Just write every day in October and dedicate it to 31 for 21. And grab the button and put it somewhere on your blog or your Facebook or tweet it or Instagram it or anything really. 

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Filed under: 31 for 21Down syndromeLanieLucy

31 for 21 – Day 14. Favorite toy.

Lanie has a particular fondness for cows. Particularly Chick-Fil-A plush cows because that’s pretty much all we have.

She’s just so sweet I can’t even stand it, sucking her thumb and snuggling her stuffed animal.


If you want to participate in the 10th annual 31 for 21 grab the button on my sidebar.  Big Blueberry Eyes is hosting it and you can start anytime in October so don’t worry if you’re late. You don’t have to have a child with Down syndrome to participate.  You don’t even have to know a person with Down syndrome to participate.  Really, you don’t even have to write about Down syndrome. Just write every day in October and dedicate it to 31 for 21. And grab the button and put it somewhere on your blog or your Facebook or tweet it or Instagram it or anything really. 

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Filed under: 31 for 21Down syndromeLanie

31 for 21 Day 13. Speech therapy starts early.

Lanie’s speech therapist is really pushing us to get her eating from a spoon but she isn’t excited by it at all.  It completely exhausts her and today she actually fell asleep sitting up in her Bumbo after only a few bites.

To help her not to get so tired I fed her propped up in her car seat this evening. I figured that not having to hold her entire upper body up while exercising her mouth muscles would help her to be able to concentrate on just the eating.

While it definitely helped, this was the face she made when she saw the spoon. Oh no, not again.

She was so much more successful at eating this time and after finishing her 5 bites Matthew talked with her about it.

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She didn’t have good things to say about the experience. She was tired, frustrated, and she was holding a pretty serious grudge.

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Then she just threw her arms up in the air. Forget you guys and your mushy applesauce.

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She wasn’t able to hold a grudge for too long and after a few minutes gave us one of her sweet smiles.

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Her oral issues are actually very mild and I’m very happy with her progress.  I just wish she would enjoy her baby food a little bit more.


If you want to participate in the 10th annual 31 for 21 grab the button on my sidebar.  Big Blueberry Eyes is hosting it and you can start anytime in October so don’t worry if you’re late. You don’t have to have a child with Down syndrome to participate.  You don’t even have to know a person with Down syndrome to participate.  Really, you don’t even have to write about Down syndrome. Just write every day in October and dedicate it to 31 for 21. And grab the button and put it somewhere on your blog or your Facebook or tweet it or Instagram it or anything really. 

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31 for 21 Day 12. I love her.

And when my day seems long and I’m frustrated and tired because my insomnia is trying to make a comeback and life is changing for the good but it’s still a lot to take in, too much all once…

This face.

I cannot get enough of her.


If you want to participate in the 10th annual 31 for 21 grab the button on my sidebar.  Big Blueberry Eyes is hosting it and you can start anytime in October so don’t worry if you’re late. You don’t have to have a child with Down syndrome to participate.  You don’t even have to know a person with Down syndrome to participate.  Really, you don’t even have to write about Down syndrome. Just write every day in October and dedicate it to 31 for 21. And grab the button and put it somewhere on your blog or your Facebook or tweet it or Instagram it or anything really. 

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31 for 21 Day 11. She sucks her thumb.

Ten children.  I have had 10 children and Lanie has been my only thumb sucker.

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Everybody says not to let babies suck their thumbs.  They warn me that it is an impossible task to break them of the habit and they’ll do it in their sleep and you won’t be able to stop them but I don’t care because it is the absolute sweetest thing ever and I love it.


If you want to participate in the 10th annual 31 for 21 grab the button on my sidebar.  Big Blueberry Eyes is hosting it and you can start anytime in October so don’t worry if you’re late. You don’t have to have a child with Down syndrome to participate.  You don’t even have to know a person with Down syndrome to participate.  Really, you don’t even have to write about Down syndrome. Just write every day in October and dedicate it to 31 for 21. And grab the button and put it somewhere on your blog or your Facebook or tweet it or Instagram it or anything really. 

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31 for 21 day 10. Friends who care.

I have a few friends who have gone out of their way to take care of me over the last 6 months since Lanie’s birth. Whether sitting with me during labor, visiting me at the hospital after she was born, waiting with me during Lanie’s echocardiogram because Rabbit couldn’t get the morning off of work, or cooking me the best chili ever time and time again.

This chili expert brought her award winning chili (I gave it an award) over after Lanie’s birth, after her surgery, and just because.


Today she brought chili over and just hung out and held Lanie so I could take care of my other children.

Good friends mean everything and I am so grateful that I have some of the best ones.

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31 for 21 Day 9. Celebrate everything.

For some reason, Baby Center sends me all the emails telling me what my child should be doing at this age. Sometimes it’s reassuring because Lanie is currently learning or has already done something in the email. Most of the time, however, I’m disappointed because it reminds me how much harder Lanie is going to have to work than her typical peers to achieve even the simplest things like clapping, sitting up, figuring out how to get a toy out of reach…

Everything will be harder for her.

In this though, we’ve come to realize there is so much more to celebrate with Lanie. Things that are often overlooked milestones in typical babies, we tend to get all excited about around here and it’s like a mini party all the time and I can’t help but think there is something special about this.

Things like making a new noise, staring at something new to her, clasping her hands together, grabbing her feet…

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…making raspberries with her mouth…

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…holding her head up while on her stomach for 2 seconds, then 5 seconds, then 10 seconds…

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…turning her head towards a sound, getting herself completely turned around in her bed, and showing a lot of interest in a stuffed cow (seriously, this one got a lot of celebration from my kids for some reason)…

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And those are just some of the small things we get excited about. There are other things we’ve celebrated with her too. Things we never even thought about before Lanie was born.

After her second cataract surgery, I was so excited that she kept trying to take her eye shield off because after her first surgery two weeks earlier she didn’t have any reaction to what was happening to her.

I celebrated in conflict with myself when Lanie screamed having her blood drawn at 2 months old because a few weeks before that she just laid there and stared into space while numerous phlebotomists tried to get a vein. Her crying hurt my heart and I teared up with her but it was nothing compared to her listlessness and blank stare at her previous blood draws.  Her pediatrician looked at me and asked, Are you okay? When I said I was she smiled and said, She’s responding.

We celebrated that some of her heart issues had cleared up by a month old and that there are only 3 issues left for her cardiologist to watch, which he is confident will likely be resolved by 1 year.

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We celebrated that all of her potential digestion issues worked themselves out.  That she can eat without a tube. That she has a stomach and an esophagus and they were connected and functioning as they should.

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That she didn’t need the NICU or the OR right after birth.

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Life is going to hand Lanie so many challenges and she will no doubt have many obstacles to overcome. But we are going to be here with her and we will celebrate every single thing, no matter how small, and encouraging her to break through her perceived limitations.

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My mohawk twins, Matthew and Lanie, in deep conversation.


If you want to participate in the 10th annual 31 for 21 grab the button on my sidebar.  Big Blueberry Eyes is hosting it and you can start anytime in October so don’t worry if you’re late. You don’t have to have a child with Down syndrome to participate.  You don’t even have to know a person with Down syndrome to participate.  Really, you don’t even have to write about Down syndrome. Just write every day in October and dedicate it to 31 for 21. And grab the button and put it somewhere on your blog or your Facebook or tweet it or Instagram it or anything really. 

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Filed under: 31 for 21Down syndromeLanieLook what I made

31 for 21 day 8. Life goes on.

We were at football games all day and while I have a good post idea in my head there has been no time to type it out so here is a picture of Lanie sitting in my lap during Matthew’s game.

Football does not amuse her.


If you want to participate in the 10th annual 31 for 21 grab the button on my sidebar.  Big Blueberry Eyes is hosting it and you can start anytime in October so don’t worry if you’re late. You don’t have to have a child with Down syndrome to participate.  You don’t even have to know a person with Down syndrome to participate.  Really, you don’t even have to write about Down syndrome. Just write every day in October and dedicate it to 31 for 21. And grab the button and put it somewhere on your blog or your Facebook or tweet it or Instagram it or anything really. 

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