Sunday, September 25, 2011

Julia's First Nephew - David James!!!

On August 7, 2010 Rush and his wife Brittany blessed us with David James Ezell...and what a joy he is!

Julia adores "Va-vid" and has a great time with him. It has been really good for her to have another baby in the family and not BE the only "baby". She helps with feeding, changing, baths and gives him lots of love!

What a great Auntie!!!!

David is loved by all his aunts and uncles...8 on our side and 9 on Brittany's side...5 great aunts and uncles...great grandparents and of course Grammy (Crystan) and Poppa (Robert) and Grandma (Beth) and Papa (David).

Absolutely adore this boy!!!!!

Friday, September 23, 2011

K...I'm an idiot!

After ALL THIS TIME I got this brainstorm to check the apple apps store. Guess what? Blogger app! Oh, yes!!! Now I can post pictures and text SO MUCH MORE EASILY!!! Yes. I feel really stupid.

Bright I can BLOG! As Julia would say "WOOOO-HOOOOOO!!!"

This is a picture of Julia and her baby "Tim" at church. She sure loves Tim and takes him everywhere. :)

A Long Overdue Update...

Hello, Bloggerland!

It has been so long since I posted that I truly DO NOT know where to begin. Maybe the best way to start is by explaining my (very) long silence.

Our family has been through a number of transitions in the last couple of years...children have married (3), grown up and moved out (4), and now I am the grandma of the most precious little pumpkin imaginable.

Our lives have turned topsy-turvy with new things (think: dairy goats, chickens, pigs, gardening...or rather re-learning what we know about gardening now that we have gobs of room AND the worlds most sticky, icky clay soil.)

The reason for THESE new obsessions (I mean new HOBBIES) is the wonderful little home we purchased on 10 acres in 2009. We are so in love with our little patch of ground...our little house...our animals...our 7,000 issues of Mother Earth News and Countryside Magazine...SO in love. It is a lifestyle that we have dreamed about for two decades, suddenly plopped into our laps by the most amazing set of circumstances.

I also need to mention that our little place is 30 minutes (when traffic is flowing smoothly) from anywhere. We are rural. Very rural.

As a matter of fact, when I called a couple of companies about Internet service one told me just that. "Mrs. are very RURAL." She said this as though it were a bad thing. (????) The representative from the other company looked us up on the map and laughed. And offered us dial up at an exorbitant price., thanks anyway! (I know, I know...satellite would be the answer to everything but we want ONLY internet...not Internet plus 947 cable channels. Would you believe that if we ask for Internet only the price is HIGHER than if we buy the package -Internet, phone, cable? Crazy!)

To be honest, the lack of Internet didn't bother me for a very long time. I have my handy-dandy iPhone, so occasional browsing or sending/receiving email is possible. Plus we were so completely absorbed in our new lifestyle...breeding, birthing, milking our goats...tending to our rapidly shrinking flock of chickens (THANK you, coyotes, red foxes and hawks)...raising and butchering (yes, you read that right) our pigs...trying to figure out this crazy soil and make it produce something (VERY frustrating!)...heating with wood ( in: our only source of heat)...weddings...grandbaby...that I didn't miss having the Internet. I was too busy learning new things and exhausted (did I mention that all this is A LOT of work? And the sort I'm not necessarily used to...the up-at-dawn-tromp-around-ten-acres-chasing-goats-pigs-and-chickens kind.)

But as time has passed and I've read Tiffany's blog about her lovely Olivia, (Search Elastamom) and Andrea's blog about her beautiful Hailey (Search Living With Cri du Chat) I've realized how much of Julia's life has passed without my sharing any of it via her blog with people who care about us. I read through her website ( and realized that it was such a beautiful chronicle of her life...and that it ends so abruptly. There are other blogs or websites about children with CdC that have done the same...they just float around out there in Internet space...and I wonder about those kiddos all the time.

So, I decided to try to figure out how to get back to blogging. The website is completely impossible to update without a full Internet connection to my computer...but blogging...SURELY I can figure out the blogging! And here we are. It is frustrating...I type each word into this phone (with one finger) in "Notes" and then copy and paste into the post box on blogger. Time consuming. But worth it!

Now...about Julia (that really is who this blog is about, though I think it will get hi-jacked from time to time as there is lots of great family news I want to share). Julia is amazing. I am so blown away by her and so proud of her progress that I could burst. I am so completely thankful for all that she is learning...doing...understanding.

If you would have asked me when she was a year old how I would feel when she is eight I probably would have burst into tears. The future was so SCARY! The obstacles SO insurmountable, the very THOUGHT of Julia at 8 was completely overwhelming. Guess what? We are here and it is BEAUTIFUL!

Julia walks, talks, runs, jumps, climbs, tells jokes, laughs, loves to dress up and be "pitty", helps with work around the house (no joke...really). She has an amazing sense of humor and sensitivity to others. She is affectionate, thoughtful, social, and loves to be around people.

She has no ongoing health issues, takes no medications, eats well (feeds HERSELF...though it does look as if a small tornado has passed through her section of the table when she is finished), has no significant eating issues (eats what we eat), sleeps 9-10 hours a night, LOVES school, has VERY few emotional meltdowns, is processing sensory well (although as she gets older there are some sensory issues re-emerging. Fortunately, her original OT (Teresa) and PT (Michelle) have remained close family friends and are so graciously willing to share their knowledge and give us direction...THANK YOU Michelle and Teresa!!! We love you!!!)

Julia has an amazing memory and we do not make a promise we won't/can't keep. If we say she can have ice cream after school it will be the FIRST thing she asks for as she gets off the bus!

All of these things are wonderful and we enjoy Julia and her great personality, her loving ways, her ability to crack us up like no one else can. Maybe it is because we have worked so hard to bring these things out in her. Or maybe it is because there were times when she was younger that we despaired of her ever developing them. Whatever the reason we are hyper-aware of all Julia's progress and thankful beyond what we are able to express for the lovely little lady she has become.

Now. There are lots of other things that are not so peachy. We do our best to downplay these and focus on the things that bring both Julia and us joy. However, to be fair I have to say that it really isn't paradise every stinking moment. (SURPRISE!)

For one thing, I despair of EVER seeing her potty trained. Really. I will probably be changing diapers when she's 20. Not trying to be negative...just real. And this is due in part to her incredibly strong will. If Julia decides she is not going to do something, the heavens may fall around her but she is NOT going to do it. No amount of cajoling, bribing, or begging is going to change her mind. Period. She does have occasional successes on the potty (YAY!) but not enough to count as even minimal potty training. Any suggestions, blogger friends?

Another issue is her desperate need for oral stimulation. She will put ANYTHING in her mouth. It really is scary. And occasionally inappropriate. Like when she tries to lick the people in line with us at Target. Yes. Totally humiliating. Or cars. She has this thing about licking cars. Maybe because they're warm from the sun???? No idea. But it's all bad. Trust me. We do the usual things...chewlery, vibrating toys, lots of different APPROPRIATE temperatures/textures...this problem is ongoing. For years now. And becoming more of an issue the older she gets, as you can imagine. I am at a loss.

Julia is also a huge mess-maker. Just random messes. DO NOT leave her unattended for more than 5 minutes. You WILL be cleaning up SOMETHING. Usually something to do with water. What is it with this irrational attraction to water anyway. Water from any source...any temperature...if it's wet she wants to pour it on the floor. Drink it. Pour it on her head. Dip her "wipe" ( MUST be RED...bandana) in it.

Now the "wipe" has become an integral part of our family. Julia takes it with her everywhere. No lie. Everywhere. School. Shower. Bed. Church. She WILL NOT leave without it. She will not get into the shower without it. She will not get on the bus without it. God help us if we lose it.

She recently threw one out the window on the freeway. I would have stopped for it if we hadn't been on the freeway. Really. It's that important to the peace in our home. It is VERY difficult to get her to attach to a different "wipe". Same brand. Same color. One smell (yes, she smells it) taste. In the mouth it goes. If it's not the "right" one it's all over but the crying. Usually I am the one crying. She's screaming. Ok...ok. Slight exaggeration. But you get the point. The "wipe" is an EXTREMELY important part of our family.

And lastly there is some tantruming. And it concerns me because at 8 she stands to my shoulder. No lie. My shoulder. And weighs 70 lbs. Right now it's manageable. In a year or two or ten...not so much. Fortunately the tantrums are not frequent. For that I'm thankful.

Well...that's all for now. There are so many things I want to tell you. Like about Alyssa's wedding. And Victoria's wedding. And my wonderful grandson. And my little place in the country. And many, many of Julia's day-to-day adventures. But I have been pecking away at my phone for well over an hour to share the little I have! I hope all is well with each of you and that life is treating you well. For us, in the great shake-down of life, we find that our good days FAR outweigh our bad days. No complaints here!

Many blessings to all!!!!!! :)

Monday, September 19, 2011

Yaaaaaaay!!!!!! :)

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Julia Solves a Problem

Julia dearly loves to eat baby wipes. Don't ask me why...we have been trying to figure this one out for years. It must be the flavor since she also likes the taste of soap.

Now...what goes in must come out which is not always pleasant for Julia or the one doing diaper duty that round, so we try our best to keep the wipes away from her. For a long time now we could keep them on top of the fridge and she couldn't reach them...until now. I was sitting in the family room when I heard the sound of a chair being dragged across the kitchen floor. As soon as I saw what she was up to I grabbed my handy-dandy phone and took these pictures:

"I'm not quite reaching them..."

"Just a li-i-i-ttle higher on my tippy-toes..."


"Oh! Hi, mom!!!!"

So...Julia solved her to get the wipes. Now I have to solve ours...finding a new place to hide them!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Mock PT Clinic at CSUS

Julia was invited to participate in another mock PT clinic at CSUS this spring. She has participated in two other clinics several years ago, but has not recently been able to attend. It is very exciting for Julia to recieve this opportunity. Her former PT, Michelle is a professor at Sac State now, and gave us this chance. The clinic began last Thursday, but we were attending Rush and Brittany's wedding :o) and weren't able to be there. Julia was home sick...she didn't even get to be at the wedding :o(. we met the students who will be working with Julia for the next 2 months. They are Travis and Heidi, and Julia gave them a run for their money today! She is definitely opinionated and was not in a compliant mood. Sigh.

Julia is extremely jealous over Michelle and was NOT HAPPY that Michelle was working with other kids! It's kind of like the school bus thing...we can't convince her that EVERY bus is not HER bus. I don't know how to get her to understand that Michelle is LOTS of kids therapist! She thinks Michelle is hers exclusively.

Here's something kind of neat...there were toys there that Michelle used to bring to our house when she worked with Julia 3, 4, even 5 years ago and JULIA REMEMBERED the toys! It was amazing. I wish so much sometimes that I could get inside her brain and know what she knows...understand what she understands.

I DO NOT think that she is as cognitively impaired as it seems she is. I think she understands, remembers, calculates much more than she is able to express to us.