Wednesday, October 24, 2012

31 for 21: Day 24 Avery reading

Avery has learned 15 popcorn words so far  this year. Her is a video of her saying her words with the flash cards… I would say she is doing pretty good for only being in school for ONE month!!!!!!!  She started the school year not knowing any…

I couldn’t be more prouder!!!Smile

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

31 for 21: Day 23 Pretty Place

I had heard that this past weekend was the prime weekend to go up and see the leaves in the that is what I wanted to do on Sunday..So on Sunday we took a nice drive up to Camp Greenville to Pretty Place to check them out…

It didn’t disappoint me…It was a beautiful drive up there…

DSC_0767 c

and it was GORGEOUS up at the very top!!! God’s masterpiece….

DSC_0765 c

the next three pictures are the view starting at the right..I couldn’t get it all on one shot..

DSC_0733 c

DSC_0734 c

DSC_0761 c

It’s a view that goes on and on forever!!!

DSC_0747 c

DSC_0755 cDSC_0743 c


DSC_0762 c

DSC_0769 c

I can see why they call it Pretty Place…:)

Monday, October 22, 2012

31 for 21: Day 22

I finally moved my twins out of there cribs…yes I know they are almost three..but I'm hanging onto my babiesSmile So I moved them into a double bed so they could sleep together. As I was taking down there cribs I took down one first then asked them where are you going to sleep now…and they said in La-la’s crib..and so then I took down the other crib..and asked them where are you going to sleep now…and they go running down the hallway towards my room and said in mommy’s
So when I got the bed in there room..and all set up they were all excited..and of course instantly started to jump on the bed..and it is one thing that I can not get them to stop…When they are suppose to be taking a nap..which actually is just a little bit of quiet time for mom now..I hear them jumping on the bed..stinkers..
One pillow has to be one way and the other pillow has to be the other way..they are very specific OCD about that detail.
and still has to be covered up a certain way..and baby tucked in next to each of them..and now George has to be tucked in next to them too…
How did the first night go you ask????  HORRIBLE!!!!!!! I got no sleep what so-ever…They kept falling out of bed..This is how it went…thunk..waaaaaa..followed by a scream….and so I would go in there quiet them down and put them back in bed..and they would fall back asleep so I would go back to bed and just fall back to sleep and..thunk..waaa..followed by a scream…you get the went on like that All.Night.Long!  I did manage to sneak in there before I went to bed..and found them like this…so I had to take a picture..on my phone..that’s why its not the greatest..but too cute not too!!! 
So I went to the store the very next day and bought mattress rails for each side..but then I came home and seen on my FB that someone suggested pool noodles under the sheet on each side..WAY CHEAPER IDEA…so I took the mattress rails back and tried the pool noodles..They work!!!! For the most part anyways..we have only had a few occasions where I am suddenly woke up to a big bang bc one of them fell out.
The same day we put them in there beds we also took away there sippy cups:(..they were still getting a milk cup at night..I know I know…they are almost three..but still..They now only get a sippy cup if we are leaving or babies aren't babies any more..sniff..sniff..
So I thought I should try to potty train them so we can be done with diapers too….HUGE.EPIC. FAIL. what in the world was I thinking???????   Lets just say that I had pee and poo everywhere all day long bc I thought I would stick it out and they would catch on…If you thought potty training one was hard…try TWO. DISASTEROUS! We will try again in a another year..I don’t even care. ha!  I actually don’t mind changing diapers anymore..way better then cleaning them up after a poo accident in underwear..Yuck!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

31 for 21: Day 21 Fall

I love fall…everything about it..the colors..the leaves falling..the smells..the apples..the crisper air…and I love to decorate for it…here are just a couple things that I made for fall this year…Fall is by far my favorite season…


Our front porch….I know my SD friends and family would be dye if they knew I actually paid money for some old dried up corn stalks..but it’s the south and that s the only way to get them..;)

Another pinterest pumpkin topiary…they all over and I love them but I decided to spray paint the one in the middle white to add interest…I wonder what color I will paint them next year…hmmm…I alos spray painted my containers an off white..they were a garage sale find and where in desperate need of a new paint job. Good as new now:)

My ruffled burlap wreath…sooo simple..I have been seeing them everywhere on pinterest and so I googled how to make them and couldn’t believe how easy they were to make…took me maybe an hour tops..and under $10…and I seen they sell them on Etsy for way more then that!!!!!!! 



A simple and cheap table runner…a strip of burlap and then I hot glued a piece of lace to the ends..ta-da..that’s it…and I totally love it!!


Throw some pumpkins on my table piece and a couple leaves around my lantern and I got a simple and cheap fall table centerpiece too!! Both my lantern and tray are southern living..but I scored them at a garage sale!!  I love garage saleing!!!!!


This weekend I repainted my living room and also my girls toy room…I think I pained tooo much this weekend I'm a little sore and a little behind on everything else!!!:( But I love the results so it was worth it!!!! Now to tackle my kitchen and dining room..its been this barn red and green for the last five years and I'm tired of it!!!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

31 for 21: Day 20 So happy to learn

(I found this link via another blogger friend who also has a child around the same age as Avery…I went to it and listened to it…very informative…so I thought I would pass it along…)
A MUST LISTEN & SHARE for parents & educators--tips from an expert working with 55 people with DS. Hear learning tips straight from the expert and connect with a WONDERFUL resource. She provides tips for teaching them how to read…write and do math..
Yvonne Pierre welcomes Terry Brown, affectionately known as “Mrs. Brown” by her many learners, has a passion and a gift for teaching individuals with Down syndrome. She began her career of teaching children with special needs within the public school system before she began teaching from her home. She has developed a successful and innovative program, “So Happy to Learn” that teaches reading, writing and math to children and adults with Down syndrome. Terry Brown was named Down Syndrome Association of Orange County's 2001 Educator of the Year. In 2004 Mrs. Brown developed and taught a yearlong pilot program for DSAOC designed to help parents teach their children to read. She has presented “So Happy to Learn” at workshops and conferences for parents and educators.
Terry Brown’s website ..go check out some of her videos of teaching other kids..I found them very helpful…
I have been in contact with Terry and she will hopefully have something up this after this weekend..I had contacted her months ago asking if she had anything for people that were not located where she lived..and she had told me she was working on after this came out again I contacted her again and asked her how she was coming with it..and she said she was almost finished up …and hoped to have it completed by the end of this weekend..Yay!!!  I will be the first to sign up for it..that’s for sure!!!

Friday, October 19, 2012

31 for 21: Day 19 The UPside of Down

Make a difference: National Down Syndrome Awareness Month
“I am AWARE! If you are a parent of a child with Down syndrome, you are AWARE, too! Now we need to make everyone else AWARE of what having a child with Down syndrome is really like. Join my tribe of families who have gone beyond just surviving a diagnosis of Down syndrome to thriving - become a THRIVALIST™! We are on a mission help new parents who might feel sad, alone, or uncertain. We want to educate the medical community on how to give the diagnosis and help new families. We want to remove any limitations placed on our children. And we want to eliminate the myths and negativity of Down syndrome in our society.
Join me, Dr. Julia Kinder, in showing the UPside of Down™!
I came across Julia awhile ago…She is a mom who has a child with ds but she is also a doctor who is on a mission. She wants to educate the physicians and medical students that are in school to be doctors. She has set up a petition. This petition is aimed at the medical community and requests more training on Down Syndrome for medical students and medical staff. As we know best, having a child with Down syndrome is often a very frightening experience, but it doesn't need to be this way. Things can change if we pull together and tell the medical community the time has come.
She asked for photos to use to hopefully update the medical books that doctors to be are studying..bc we all know all of the outdated pictures and also the outdated information. So  I sent in a picture of Avery..She is in the video…She is also running a photo contest to all of my DS friends!!!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

31 for 21: Day 18 Destiny’s Art

On Monday we were invited to go see Destiny’s art in the Chapman Cultural Art building. Her art teacher had selected hers to get displayed. The art teacher chose 5 from the school. So district one and district seven were displayed right now and will be displayed for a couple of months and they they will chose two different districts. The art is in the hallway leading to the Spartanburg Art Museum. They are also displayed upstairs too…Destiny’s art was in the hallway right before the Art Museum.



They opened up the Spartanburg Art Museum and allowed everyone to go through it free of charge.




This was an interesting piece…the girls liked this one…




This was my favorite piece..not sure why it just stood out to me…Destiny and her art teacher


They also served snacks/refreshments and tea…


Yes that is my 11 yr old in sitting in a stroller…she’s kind of strange;)



Wednesday, October 17, 2012

31 for 21: Day 17 Hunter’s Anthem

Today I want to share an awesome video. It was made by Michelle Gary Norwood about her son Hunter. She sings  a song that she wrote and its about the fears we all have. She had me in tears by the end of it…
“Hunter's Song is a parent's anthem to a child with down syndrome. Michelle Norwood composed this song for her son and was inspired to get it produced and create a video. She shares with us her desire to encourage and inspire other parents of special needs children and to bring awareness to the beauty of people with special needs.”

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

31 for 21: Day 16 Twist n’ Write Pencil

So with Avery starting kindergarten we are working hard on her writing skills. And we have come along way but we still have a long ways to go..but today I am on cloud nine!!!! 
We have been dotting letters and numbers for her to trace. There has really been no attempt to write anything on her own besides her name. The only thing she could really write on her own really good was her name..and even with the dotting letters it has been hard for her to trace.  Look at the picture for example..she isn't right on the dots. I don’t think it is matching up for her visually!
Avery’s OT therapist brought this pencil that she found at a teacher store..and we were just going to try it and see how it worked!!!! It gives her more control for her smaller hands.. The shape helps the child hold the pencil correctly, and the size helps lessen the death grip that some have on pencils.
OH MY WORD!!!!!  This pencil is A-h-Ma-Z-I-N-G!!!!!!!! She wrote words on her own…the first two words in the following picture the therapist just called out each letter and she wrote it from her memory (mouse and night)..and then she thought she would see how she did with a visual cue so she wrote the word out first then had Avery copy it..
Brielle had to come home and bust my bubble a little and tell me that the only word that she could really read was cat…but I don’t care..I can see the other ones:)
This picture looks like her therapist has her hand on Avery’s hand helping her but she really doesn't ..I promise!! Anyways..guess what I had to do then…Go online and find me that pencil and I ordered her some!!!!  I ordered them from here and some refill pencil lead from here If anyone else wants to look up this pencil it is called a twist n’ write pencil…

Two pointers that we are going to change from the suggestion of our OT therapist…
*To help her keep her letters contained…draw individual squares. and have her place one letter in each square..visual works great!!!  I've showed you that before with Avery’s well she controlled it once we drew boxes and had her place one letter in each box..
*Don’t do dots for them to trace. Use a highlighter and have them trace or copy what ever they need to from that instead. All of the dots are not good visually..and it makes sense..go back up and look at the picture of how she traced the word with the dots..and then look at the picture of the the corner of the picture you will see some numbers highlighted and she traced over them with pencil..look at how well she traces the highlighted ones compared to the dotted ones! Point made! Another suggestion for tracing was to write the word out in highlighter and then copy it on a copier and it will be lighter gray for her to trace too…
I found a YouTube video of someone showing how to write with this pencil..Check it out!!

Monday, October 15, 2012

31 for 21: Day 15 Buddy Walk

Last Saturday we had our Buddy Walk…It turned out to be a really nice day..A day to CELEBRATE Avery and all the other special buddies. A day where friends and family come and show there support. A day to raise awareness to everyone. A day to just come together and have fun and not have to worry about anything! A day to show everyone that they are really more alike then different. It really is an important day for us. Warning: Lots of pictures!!!!


This year was the first year that we have had family come except for the very first year we did it..and Avery was soooo excited to see them…They all had so much fun too..My SIL told me that her kids talked about it for days after..


Avery went to school with this adorable girl last year…She was excited to see her again tooSmile 


We had a guy there making balloon animals/hats…it ended up being to hot to wear them though..


and the chick-fil-a cow came;)


There was a church group that volunteered there time and set up table was finger painting.


Another table was making a door sign..


another one was getting buddy walk tattoos


and another one was making the pin that Destiny is wearing..It says I love Jesus!


and of course Ronald McDonald was there too


There were clowns too but Avery was not really impressed with them,….can you tell?? lol!!


the firemen came and let the kids in the fire trucks and passed out fire hats…and then they had to turn on the siren and my babies were done with that…they took off running and screaming..The police also had a table set up where you could go and get your kids fingerprinted for free…


This year they asked Avery to sing the National Anthem with another we practiced all week and she kind of knew it…but then the girl she was supposed to sing it with was sick and so she wasn’t there so they just asked if some of the other older kids knew it and four other ones came up and sing and kind of took over and so she didn’t really sing then..but at the end she did…but she didn’t have a microphone so you couldn’t hear her..



All lined up ready to walk!!!!!!


The girl in the red pants off to the right..she was the oldest buddy there…46..amazing she def don’t look like she is 46!!!



Avery’s teacher came out and walked with us too..Avery was happy to see her!! Thank you for coming out and supporting meant the world to us!!


Look at that line…and all them people..that is awesome!!!! Everyone that came out to support all the special buddies on there special day!!!! Amazing!!!


Along the walk they had posters set up….we were asked to send in a picture and one sentence..This was the first year they did that..and I really enjoyed that..hope they do it again next year!!



All the special buddies!!!!!!



getting her goodies!!!:)



Just relaxin at our camp that we set up…my sil and my adorable niece:)




We should of attempted a picture of all the kids in the beginning bc at the end ..they were was kind of hot…can you tell????


Releasing the balloon arch..they also had a balloon release for all the special buddies in heaven waiting for us..






We had a great day at the Spartanburg Buddy Walk…even though it could have been a little cooler..Avery was a little stinky when we got home from the sweat inside of her cast…I wish more of our friends and family from SD would of been able to be there with us...i know we would have a BIG army..:) Sometimes it just stinks to live so far away:( But a Big thanks to my SIL that came out and walked and just spent the day with us.....I/Avery really appreciate it!!!! It was nice to have some family there this year:)