Saturday, October 24, 2009

Too Late...

I tried to make this post before Friday ended, but I am sitting here at 12:31am on Saturday morning typing.  Doh!  Another missed day on 31 for 21.  Geesh.

I am up this late because I am in the midst of packing/cleaning like a madwoman getting ready for our trip to upstate NY.  Bryan is staying here (that whole job thing totally cramps our style!) and I am driving with Gaga and the boys tomorrow (well, technically today) after dinner.  I am crossing my fingers that all 3 will sleep peacefully in the van for the 14ish hours that we will be in there.

Ok, so I know that is impossible.  I am really just hoping we make it there without any major catastrophes.  

I will try to get to the computer while we are at my grandparents' house, but I am not guaranteeing anything.  (sidenote: guaranteeing is a really hard word to spell.)  If I can't, I know that I have unanswered questions that I promise I will get to in November (we are there until Halloween)...I will make it up with extra credit.

Off to bed with me.  

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Really, Dad? Really?

**Disclaimer:  Bryan didn't really shoot him.  But it IS fun licking and sticking those darts!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Q and A- Ds type

Jessica asked what type of Down syndrome Chase has.  He has the regular old trisomy 21, which means by genetic fluke, he ended up with three copies of the 21st chromosome instead of two.  Every single one of his cells has it.  

I am pretty much convinced that his propensity to throw things, love people, and smile with his eyes closed is contained on that extra gene.


I cut off some tubes socks to make these faux-Baby Legs today.  He likes them.
So do I.

I just wish I had thought of this before I put in that order for 4 more pairs last night...oops.  
Ah, well.

Monday, October 19, 2009


There has been a lot of talk lately in a couple of my circles about seasons.  A time for this, a time to move past that.  And it coincides with the decisions I'm having to make right now about going back to work.

I think, even though it makes me sad, that my season for being a stay at home mom is almost over.  I mean, not like tomorrow, but next fall...and I have to do the legwork now to prepare for it.  I spent the morning calling every daycare place near (and not near) me, working out hypothetical budgets and is just overwhelming.

And everything is hinging on something else.  If Chase gets into the school we want, if I can teach at the school I want, if the daycare has openings, if afterschool care works out.  This is COMPLICATED!

I guess I am also just feeling guilty about putting Gavin in full time daycare when I've spent the last 4 years at home.  I know he will be one, and probably happy to spend the day playing with a bunch of other kids at "school"...maybe it is just me, afraid that I will miss important parts of his life while I am at work.  But I also feel that my happy time at home is slowly coming to an end.  I am ready to have my house back, ready to only have my kids to worry about...I mean, the daycare kids are good kids- I think it is just the isolation that being at home all the time brings.  It seriously wears you down, and I know that for my own mental health, I am dangeroulsy close to the day that I run out of the house and down the street in a housecoat and slippers crying hysterically.  (Ok, I stole that from the movie Very Bad Things, but the image works somedays.)

And now that I have to commit to going back to work (Bryan has to decide how much money to put away for pre-tax childcare by November 6), I feel like I am on borrowed time at home.  So much to do!  So many kids to hug!  Must! Not! Miss! Anything!  Ack!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Preschool Sunday

This morning we went to church at the Presbyterian church that the boys' preschool is part of.  It was "preschool Sunday", and the 4 year old class was singing 2 songs as part of a program to recognize their teachers and the director.  

I know I've already told you this, but my Ian sure is cute.  Stinking cute.  They sang 'Jesus Loves Me', and Ian stood up there and mouthed the words, and did some of this signing that went along with the song.  

The sermon was about children today (apropos, right?) and the priest talked about how churches need to be not just tolerent of children, not just child-friendly, but welcoming to children.  We don't normally go to this church, but it was amazing how many people were there that know Ian and Chase because of school.  They are like little rock stars.  And I love that they spend their time at school in a place that is truly welcoming like that.

We went to brunch afterwards at a hole-in-the-wall restaurant with a super nice waitress and a bunch of people who complimented us on how adorable our family is.  I couldn't agree more :)

Gavin is starting to remind me of Ian.  I can't put my finger on why, though... :)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Ready for their close-ups

The boys had picture day at school today.  I thought I would try to sneak Gavin in and get a shoot with all three of them.

So, I started at 6:30 this morning getting everyone in the tub, fresh and shiny like.  Against my better judgement, I put them all in their picture clothes 1/2 an hour before heading out the door.

First Chase spit up on his shirt.  So I changed him.  Then Gavin blew out of his onesie while sitting in the Bumbo.  So I changed him.  Then Ian didn't match anyone any more.  So I changed him.

And we did eventually make it to school.  The photo shoot was pretty hilarious.  There may be a good one or two, depending on the photographer's cropping skills.  We'll see.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


Had Chases's initial preschool meeting yesterday.  I'm torn.

The school system apparently only offers EC classrooms for 3 year olds.  However, there are 4 year old "peer pals" in the classrooms; typical kids who pay to be there.  The only varient is how many peer pals are in the classrooms.  The class that Chase would go into has 6 kids on IEPs and 3 Peer Pals.

I hear good things.  I hear that kids are learning lots of things.  The preschool coordinator has a grandson in the peer pal program.  

Chase could be in the EC classroom 3 days, then we could pay for him to be in the preschool that he is in now for the other 2 days...

But I just had it in my head that he could be (and should be) in a typical classroom.  

On the other hand, is this one year that he spends in EC be a good tool to work on the skills that he needs to be successful once he mainstreams the following year?  Is it worth it to fight to get the county to pay for private school?  Is it possible (one of the moms in my group has already tried to fight that battle to no avail)?

Eh.  I am just confused.  I guess I need to go in and observe the class to get a first-hand look at what it is.  I just want to do the right thing...                                                                                                                                                                 

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

I know, I know.

I'm doing terribly at this year's 31 for 21.  I do have an extra kid this year and all, you know.

Anyhoo.  Bryan is gone this week again, so it is just the kids and I.  His mom flies in tomorrow, so I will have some relief soon.  

It's been a little crazy busy.  We took some time to visit IKEA yesterday (FUN!!), but have been getting the kids to bed late the last few nights, and so I feel like there is not a whole lot of down time.  It doesn't help that Gavin is apparently a night owl, either.  He is wide awake hours and hours after the other two crash.

Today I had to whirlwind clean the house because we had our preliminary school meeting for Chase here.  And of course, they can't see the Cheerios that usually litter the floor, or all day's dishes piled next to the sink.  More on the meeting later.  I just need a little time to digest it, and I have other things to think about right now (Bejeweled Blitz) and a baby next to me that wants my attention (he's cute, so I don't mind).

Sorry for being a slacker.  I promise not to suck so much for the rest of the month.  Maybe.

Saturday, October 10, 2009


I like this photo, because it shows just how normal everyday life is here.  Just two guys playing on the McDonald's slide...2 kids who would rather play than eat their chicken nuggets. 

Leave us alone, Mom!  We are busy!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Ianism- @ the Nature Museum

Bryan had the day off, and his mom is in town, so we took the boys (plus William) to the Charlotte Nature Museum this morning.  It was so much fun.  Chase is really starting to appreciate trips like this- he is so inquisitive and interested in everything now.  He loves to watch and touch and, well, throw things.  But I digress.

The museum had live animals, nature trails, a water table and a worm hole to climb in.  It was just awesome to watch them all enjoy themselves, even without naps.  

Ian wanted to hike the trail a second time without the babies, so I walked with him.  While we were out, I suggested that he pick up some interesting leaves and we could take them home and make rubbings.  He thought about it, then said, "Um, no.  I think I'd rather just step on them now."

Sometimes the day is for collecting and observing, studying and doing.  And other days are for just moving ahead :)

Thursday, October 8, 2009

The Talk

Before the Buddy Walk this year, I sat down with Ian and had the big talk with him about Down syndrome.  He's at the point when he wonders why Chase gets all the attention...and I just wanted him to hear it from us rather than from his friends.  

So, I cornered him as he was coloring.  I asked him if he ever heard the words "Down syndrome" before.  He said yes, and I asked him what he thought it meant.  He told me that it was when babies were really really sick.

Awww :(  I think he remembers when Chase was in the hospital when he was born.  I asked him if Chase was sick now, and he told me yes, he has a runny nose.

If it were just that simple!

I explained that Down syndrome doesn't mean that Chase is sick, just that he was going to need extra help and extra time to learn things.  

Ian looked at me for a moment, and then asked me to help him find the brown crayon that he needed.

I guess it was only me that thought it would matter a lot.  Chase is just Ian's little brother.  The one that he has to hide his marbles from.  The one that he has to put his drinks up on the counter so that they don't get spilled.  The one with the runny nose.  And it is totally normal to him.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Q and A...procreation

Q:  What are your chances of having another baby that has ds? Also, will it be geneticly passed on from Chase if he has children?

A:  The geneticist we met with after Chase was born told us briefly that our chances of having another child with Ds was 1%...but not truly based on numbers, just that it had to be higher than nothing.   I didn't really understand that.  Basically, I think that it means that since Ds is a genetic anomoly, and Chase has the regular old fluke-ish Trisomy 21, that our chances don't really change, but they have to assign us a number just because.  If anyone else has a better answer than that, I'd love to hear it.

As far as Chase goes, I believe that most males with Ds are sterile.  So his chances of passing it on are close to nothing.  I have heard stories of women with Ds giving birth to typical babies.  I don't know what the real odds are on that, and I am too tired to look up any genetics information just now :)

Who Said Chase Would Never Soar?!

(Hi Kim!)

Monday, October 5, 2009

Buddy Walk 2009

The Buddy Walk was a big success this year :)  Here is our team photo, minus two families that didn't quite get there in time for the actual walk.  We had family, friends, and teachers join us...and we also teamed up with our friends from the group (that is Kaitlin riding with Chase in the wagon).

Chase sported angel wings on his shirt, and blood red lips from some free Rita's Italian Ice (Swedish fish flavor).  

It is weird.  I think the last couple years I have had little pangs of fear?  worry?  I don't know.  But this year I didn't feel that at all.  We were just there for Chase, and all his friends, celebrating him and all his potential.  Good stuff.

Also, we had the talk with Ian about Down syndrome beforehand.  He didn't really care that much.  He mostly wanted me to get him more crayons so he could finish the Halloween picture he was working on.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Q and A- Cuteness

I'll answer my reader questions in the order in which they here goes the first one:

Bryan said, "...why is your kid so damn cute?!"

Well, Bryan, I am so glad you asked.  Chase is, as you have noticed, incredibly cute.  Is it his infectious smile?  His slightly wobbly gait?  The way he giggles and sounds like that dog on Looney Tunes?  Perhaps it is the way that his eyes close when he laughs?  Or they way he says, "Mem." at the end of the blessing.  Maybe you can't resist his throwing-mulch-and-giggling game outside.  Or how he puts on his little messenger bag, goes to the door, waves, and decisively says BYE when he wants to leave.  Possibly it is the way he asks to ride in the car by signing 'drive' and making car sounds?  How about when he hugs you and pats your back?  Or when his face lights up and he squeals, "Guy Guy!!" when he sees his little brother?  Maybe it is the way he takes ginormous bites of banana and then asks for more before he can even swallow.  Could it be the wayhe adopts random men while we are out and about?  How 'bout the way he bops his head around in the car to Miley Cyrus songs?  Or how he gets totally excited about bathtime?  Is it the way he waits his turn to wrestle with Ian and Daddy?  

Frankly, the possibilities are endless.  It is impossible to pinpoint exactly what makes him so damn cute.

The bottom line is, Chasey is the result of two very awesome people.  How could he not be?! 

Saturday, October 3, 2009


Our Buddy Walk is tomorrow...and I have a thousand things to do.  This is your daily post :)

See you tomorrow with a much better effort!!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Things I don't want to forget...

...the way that Chase carries a bowl filled with a snack.  He concentrates really hard and cups his little hands underneath it, and when he sets it down on the ground, he squats and oh-so-carefully puts it down, sliding it out from his hands like it is a delicate bird's egg.

This is, of course, one of the rare times that he has a snack that he doesn't feel the overwhelming urge to chuck across the room, which is not as cute.  Not at all.

31 for 21 Q and A

I'm taking Jennie's idea from her blog A Little Something Extra, and opening this month up for some Q and A about Down syndrome, or anything about my experiences so far in raising Chase.  So, if you have any (respectful) questions that you've wanted to ask, but haven't felt comfortable asking, ask away.  I'd be happy to answer to the best of my abilities (I'm still learning, too!).

Thursday, October 1, 2009

31 for 21, Day One!

Tricia, over at Unringing the Bell, is hosting (?) the 3rd annual 31 for 21 challenge again this year.  And since today is October (yowza!), it is DAY ONE!

I think I'll just start today with a thank you to all my Ds blog friends.  I don't know how much you all realized how instrumental you were with helping me through my journey (well, still helping me).  It makes the frustrating times so much more bearable when I can read about someone else and how they are dealing.  You all help me celebrate, laugh, and cry.  

I just think it is good stuff.  And it is way better than actually going to a therapist :)