Spring is Here

March 27th, 2011

We’ve enjoyed a few days of warmer temps and sunshine in the past week (between the clouds and rain).  And, while visiting friends last week, the girls discovered what fun “real” swings can be.  Thank you, Leila and Lottie for sharing your toys so nicely.  Isabelle, Miah still wants to “keep you forever.”

The girls also want to “keep” Rubén and Ashley, who were here for Spring Break.

It’s fun being the youngest cousins, and getting spoiled with lots of attention.  We hope you had a safe trip back to college,and that the quarter goes by quickly!

This week we took our first “hike” of the season, if 5 1/2 miles along the Riverfront Trail counts.  It was nice to have extra “carriers” along.  This spring I get the added exercise of 25#s on my back.  My legs were a bit sore the next couple days.

Miah found her first geocache of the season, but made Rubén retrieve it.  The attached spider was a little intimidating.

We enjoyed seeing these cormorants, and looking for other “signs of spring.”  Playing in the sand and throwing rocks in the water was definitely a highlight.

We’re looking forward to warmer weather and all the beauty that spring has to offer.

Posted in Ami, Family, Life, Miah | 1 Comment »

Still Plugging Along

March 23rd, 2011

We’re still here, but busy.  You can see that Ami is free of arm restraints … well, except when they wear them on their legs.  Fancy shin guards for future hockey players?  There’s never a dull moment…

Actually we are still putting them on her arms at night because she still has stitches in her mouth.  She’s gotten so used to the no-no’s now that it doesn’t even matter, but her hands do go in her mouth if we’re not watching.  Next week marks 6 weeks post surgery and Ami’s “all clear” to return to normal eating, etc.  Already this week she has been enjoying all the textures again of soft, well-cooked, but no longer puréed foods.  This was her palate last week.  ↓

And yesterday.  ↓  We’re getting there…

Mr. Bunny is back.  We’ve enjoyed watching him munching on the lawn a few mornings and evenings.  He obviously evaded the coyotes and owls over the winter.

I just finished the quilting for another one of Virginia’s beautiful quilts.  She’s 89 years old, and her sewing machine hasn’t slowed down yet!

Now that we’re having intermittent good weather along with the rainy weather, we’re starting to work/play outdoors more.  Mud (gravel) pie anyone?  As of today, the raised garden beds are weeded, fertilized, and ready to plant.  (Only peas and spinach at this point, as it’s still below freezing at night.)

We’re also finishing indoor projects (because who wants to be indoors when the weather turns nice!)  So, taxes are done, re-adoption papers are filed (Court date next week!), I’m on my next to last assignment for my online Continuing Ed. class (keeping up my teaching certification), and nearly all of Ami’s 100 Good Wishes Quilt squares are cut out and waiting to be assembled (still waiting on a few more that are supposedly coming from extended family members).  The past couple weeks have been productive (which feels really nice since I took about a month hiatus of everything to focus on my girls while Ami recovered)!

Ami’s Progress

March 12th, 2011

It’s been 3 1/2 weeks since Ami’s palate surgery and I think we’ve weathered the experience pretty well.  In a few days, Ami will be able to discard the “no-no’s” (arm restraints).  She has adapted very well to using them, but we’re hoping that sleeping through the night (not that that has really ever happened) will resume once they come off.  [Imagine having straight boards for arms, and waking up whenever you try to roll over - especially since Ami used to be a stomach sleeper.]

On Monday the girls endured yet another drive over the mountains to Ami’s Post Op appointment.  Our day was spent 6 hours in the car, 1 hour waiting in the hospital room, and 10 minutes talking with the doctor.

But the doctor was pleased with Ami’s recovery.  Everything looks good so far, and we will see him again in 3 months.  There is still the possibility of a fistula developing, though it is not likely.  That is why she is still on puréed foods for a few more days, and soft foods for two more weeks after that.  So we will continue with Mommy feeding her, and watching to make sure no objects go in the mouth that might damage the still delicate new palate.  The doctor is also looking at the soft palate in the back of Ami’s mouth to see how that is healing.  I’m not sure how it’s supposed to look (and move), but that (and her adjustment to it) will also affect her speech, and play a big part in determining if she will need any type of soft palate revisions in the next few years.  Already we are hearing new sounds that she was unable to make before.  It is exciting to hear better articulation, though we have a long long way to go.  She will be starting speech therapy again soon.  We also immediately noticed more nasality in her voice.  It seems to have gotten better, now that she is healing, but I may just have gotten used to it.  This is very common, and one thing the SLP (speech language pathologist) works on.

Miah could be a speech therapist someday.  She already works with Ami on trying new sounds.  It’s great.

Another thing we’re anticipating as Ami continues to heal is the dissolvable stitches falling out.  They must feel terribly weird to her tongue.  The doctor said sometimes they stay in for quite a while.  Evidently that is to blame for the lingering bad breath.  We’re thankful to be beyond the worst of it (think about the dried blood, raw tissue, and packing material of the first few days), but we are looking forward to getting rid of the bad breath entirely.  It doesn’t help that teeth-brushing has been forbidden, (though I have done a little, very carefully.)  We just make sure her mouth is rinsed well with water after every meal or snack.  We have all been amazed at how she has taken this all in stride, not even complaining about her limited diet (questioning, yes, but not complaining).  Until yesterday.  She cried, for the first time, about wanting food she could not have.  I take this as an indication that her mouth must finally be feeling better for her.  She’s going to be so excited when I finally hand her a spoon and she’s permitted to feed herself again.


March 6th, 2011

Do you remember this face?  This is the adorable image we saw on March 5, 2007!  Time sure flies?

Who would have imagined this four years ago!

Or this!  What a blessing Miah has brought our family!

A Somewhat Normal Week

March 5th, 2011

Ami seems back to normal now except for her restrictions (arm restraints and food/feeding).  Well, that, and sleeping through the night.  But it is much better.  She still has some stitches in her mouth, but it looks like some are also gone.  As far as we can tell, all is healing fine.  We’ll see what the doctor says in a few days.

After having time off from “normal”, the girls have really enjoyed playing together this week.

And being Mommy’s helpers in the kitchen.  (Although maybe that’s just torture for Ami, since she can’t sample what we’re making.)

But they do both really look forward to going to Grandma’s house.  You can imagine all the attention they get, being only two little ones, among several grown-ups.

We’ve had snow to enjoy, also.  Sometimes only in our view of the mountains, and sometimes falling down here, too.

Last Sunday, Miah and I got to go on a date with Grandma, Nancy, Tish, and Kaelan.  It was good for her and I to have some special time, considering all the attention Ami has been requiring lately.

It was a real treat to see such talent and grace up close (and in our own town!)

Miah was probably most impressed by the ladies’ sparkly outfits.  She did enjoy the skating also.  We all did.  Thanks, Mom!