The Ocean

August 27th, 2012

It was fun to go back to one of our favorite, non-touristed beaches.

We arrived at low tide and found some shells, some agates, and observed life in the tide pools.

But the girls’ favorite pastime

Was just playing in the water,

Watching the waves,

And splashing through them.

Again,

And again,

And again.

Chasing the last of summer.

Posted in Ami, Miah, Trip | 1 Comment »

Can You Hear Me?

August 24th, 2012

I found out some information today that I thought I’d share with those who may be interested.  Ami had tubes placed in her ears when she had palate surgery, due to ear infections and minor hearing loss.  We had heard that this is common for cleft affected children because the eustachian tubes may be positioned differently, allowing fluid buildup.  I understood that by placing tubes, the fluid could now drain and alleviate pain and pressure, and that it should help prevent ear infections.  But no one told me how this works.  This site gives more detailed information on what is happening in the middle ear.

Several months ago Ami had an ear infection so we visited her pediatrician to get it taken care of, and were told that her tubes were doing what they were meant to do, draining the fluid.  We also saw that she had a lot of buildup of wax and crusty dried fluid.  Not wanting to disturb the tubes, her pediatrician wouldn’t remove it.  After realizing that her hearing was being compromised, we got a referral to a local ENT, and in a relatively simple procedure he removed LOTS and LOTS of wax!  The bill for the “surgery” was not so simple.  Six months prior to this, at her annual check up with the CL/CP team at Children’s Hospital, she had also had a substantial amount of wax removed by the ENT.  (Her hearing test indicated that her hearing was now in the normal range.)

Now three months go by and we notice Ami does not seem to be hearing so well.  Yep, we can see that wax building up again.  (For some reason, ear wax in Asians tends to be dry and sticks to the ear canal, so buildup isn’t easy to remove.)  We’re thinking, okay, I guess wax removal is going to be a quarterly event for this one!  Because of the tubes, we cannot give her ear drops to help with the process.  Well, after talking to an audiologist friend, we found out that their office will remove ear wax for a fraction of the cost.  Basically the same procedure, but not considered a surgery.

Today Ami had her appointment.  She even got to watch the process on the computer screen.  In talking with the audiologist, he said that the tubes do more than drain fluid.  They work as a substitute eustachian tube, allowing air into the middle ear also.  In layman terms, he explained that the tissues in the middle ear have moisture in them, and if the eustachian tube closes up due to a cold, etc, then the tissues will release fluid, like ringing out a sponge would do.  By allowing airflow, the tubes can prevent this fluid from forming in the ears.  I may not have gotten all my facts straight, but I thought it was quite interesting and helpful information.  So ears are cleaned out, Ami is feeling fine, and she no longer has an excuse for not hearing us!

Vacation

August 22nd, 2012

Our vacation started with an AWAA regional picnic.  It was good to reconnect with friends through our adoption agency, and to watch the kids play together.

Then after some extended family time and Miah’s birthday celebration,

It was off to the beach!

“No, Mom, it’s not cold!”

A little reading time in the camper before the day’s excursions.

We showed the girls our old stomping grounds,

Including the lighthouse and the octopus tree.

But their favorite stop was the Cheese Factory.

Mmm, mmm, good!!!

Stay tuned for more beach pictures…

Birthday Celebrations

August 18th, 2012

It always seems that when there are happenings to write about and pictures to share, I don’t have the time to blog.  We had a great vacation.  We’ve been catching up after being gone.  And we’re getting all the enjoyment we can out of the last of summer.

Miah has had a couple birthday celebrations since the last post.  We had an impromptu celebration at the park before we left on vacation,

Then her requested party at Uncle Paul’s and Aunt Kathryn’s.

With some special cousins,

Some cake and presents,

(she enjoyed cutting her own cake)

And some pool time.

Or should I say “air time”.

Ami likes getting air time, too.

Then we had one more celebration with more family at Grandma’s.  Thank you, everyone, for being a special part of Miah’s life.

Look Who’s Six!

August 2nd, 2012

Happy Birthday, big girl!  It’s hard to believe we’ve already spent six birthdays with you.  You are an amazing girl, Miah, and such a blessing to our family.  We love you bunches!