Another observation through this project: I'm realizing how often my happiness photos involve Ainsley. That's okay though since this is her blog and the project is being posted here. The thing about having a special needs child is that it doesn't allow you to take all the normal things for granted. All the little things she does really do make me happy and that's not just blogging material, that's real. I'm proud of every accomplishment no matter how small. I am proud of all she's overcome. I'm proud of her.
Daily Happiness Photos - Week 16
Ainsley loves to watch DVD's. So much that it's a problem. Even though she can't speak she is relentless in her sign language requests for DVD's that start the second she gets off the bus from school. Oddly it's nearly as annoying as if she was whining. Today I said no to her many requests. After awhile she motioned for me to follow her to the formal living room and then she pointed to the TV(in the cabinet) and held up her finger for 1(meaning just one). I was really amazed at the higher logic this bargaining took. Sometimes in the past we've put a DVD on for her in this room when we don't want her in the regular TV room. So I guess she remembered that and figured that even though I said no to a DVD in the TV room maybe I'd agree to just one DVD in the other room. I figured I had to reward her for her efforts and let her watch just one. What a smarty.
04/17 Spring Paper Mural
We had a long awaited Physical Therapy consultation today at Children's. In the waiting room was the cutest paper mural of green grass with daffodil flowers tucked in and birds. It was so cute and cheery it really made me happy. It's a little silly, but true. It's so nice that the hospital and the people who work there try to make it a happy place to be. ~ I was also happy with the PT. She did a thorough assessment. She's going to refer us to a therapist in the community (though I'm still waiting on the speech and OT referrals from weeks ago) so I won't hold my breath. She thinks it will really help Ainsley stand if we can get her legs straight (likely a side effect of them being bent in casts/braces/wedges etc. for far too long). She gave us some new stretches since the ones I have been doing aren't getting the job done. She also said something that made me very happy. I often refer to Ainsley as non-ambulatory(walking) but she pointed out that in fact she can walk, she just needs a walker. WOW! I never looked at it that way! Somehow that sounds so much better! I went from having a child who can't walk to one who can, with just a mental adjustment, and that makes me beyond happy.
Who doesn't love found money? Even better than finding a $20 bill in your pocket is when your husband adds up the items your kids bought that month with their own money and it adds up to $140!!! Before you freak out and assume they get an astronomical allowance I'll tell you that I encourage my kids to save their money and spend it wisely. They also often get birthday money from family (and just got some $ from Grandpa at Easter). Their allowance is only $1 a week. Shhhh. Don't tell them that's a bit under the average going rate. Still it adds up. Adrian bought a DS game, a case for his DS and a Pokemon collector tin of cards. Evie bought a watch, hat, headbands and a Harry Potter Lego book. I love that Steve did the collection.
04/20 Our Driveway
It's a funny thing to be happy about since it's just a big slab of concrete. I don't know if I've written about this, but at our old house we had a shared driveway and garage with the neighbor. It was one of those old Seattle neighborhoods that was built before everyone had cars so the garage was added in the 1930's as an easement. Having a disabled child I needed to pull up to the door and load Ainsley and her stuff into the car. Sometimes this was a problem with my neighbors if they needed to leave at the same time. Plus they decided to build a platform to place their garbage cans on right across from what was my front door, making it difficult for me to get in and out of my car. I don't miss those neighbors one bit! What an amazing contrast to our new driveway, which I love. Ainsley can walk in her walker, the kids can play basketball, they can ride bikes....And when we need to we have plenty of space to stack yard waste. Which is not in this picture, and that makes me happy. Today Steve's dad came over with his truck and they made 4 trips to the dump with our 42 bags of yard waste, and pile of branches that was as big as the truck. I wasn't kidding about the amount of yard work that needed to be done, and unfortunately there is still plenty to be done.
04/21 Chain Link Fence
I really don't care for chain link fences most of the time but they are the perfect thing to keep a young girl busy at a baseball game. I made me so happy seeing her cruise the fence. You should have seen her face! She was having so much fun! She is getting to be so rambunctious (and tall) this little girl of ours.
04/22 Unsupervised Play
Yes in this day and age of the "helicopter parent" dare I admit that I like to let my children play unsupervised? I think it's good for them to use their imagination. We decided to "unplug" the kids for the day and set them up on the patio with some large blankets and the box of Playmobil. All three of them played happily outside while Steve and I worked in the yard. It was Earth Day and the weather couldn't have been more perfect. All 3 kids had a blast. Evie setup a bunch of Playmobil scenes and asked me to take pictures of "her work". Cute things like a barnyard, a duck pond with bunnies, a girl with her dog etc. I had to laugh when I got a closer look at this one. The dog spilled the vase of flowers and there is a shotgun on the dining room table. Hmmm...They also rode bikes and ran through the sprinkler....in April....in "Seattle". That's a first! They rescued a couple frogs from the hot tub. And planted a sunflower. It was a great day for play, and for celebrating the gift of this Earth.
I can't believe it's the last full week of April! In May we make a trip to Cincinnati for an opinion about Ainsley's airway. It's officially less than a month away now! I'm starting to get that familiar excited but sickly nervous feeling in my stomach that I get with every "big" thing that comes up. You'd think I'd get used to it but I don't. With any luck the weather will continue to be nice and I'll spend it doing more yard clean up. I hope you have a great week whatever you are doing.