Archive for April, 2005

One Year Corrected!

April 30, 2005

Tomorrow Ty will be ONE YEARS old (corrected age)! Before Ty was born, I had already decided how I would do his first birthday pictures. In January, he was still too young for my idea. This afternoon though, Jim is going to help me! Hopefully my idea will work and turn out cute. I’ll try to post pictures tomorrow:)

We decided to celebrate Ty’s first year birthday and Tanner’s fourth year birthday on SUNDAY, MAY 22nd. The “Shear Shactor” party is just around the corner now:).

Music Lover

Ty’s love of music continues to grow! He has been just singing and clapping away this week. In fact, he has woken up in the dead of night this week, started singing and clapping and then fell back to sleep. Totally adorable.

The other night, we put Ty to bed awake. Jim and I were both tired and were hoping he would just fall asleep. He decided to stand in his crib and pull on the mini blinds. His daddy got after him for this and Ty got mad. He held his breath. Jim swung him out of the crib in a hurry tossing him in the air a bit and said “Oh no you don’t! Your not holding your breath right now!” Ty breathed:). Go daddy. He didn’t want to settle down after this so I ended up singing his favorite song (Hush little baby…). When I was finished, all was quiet. I assumed he was asleep. A minute later, Ty started singing back to me and clapping his hands. I found that I enjoy being sang to sleep as well:).

Rasberries

If Ty was in a rasberry blowing contest he would win for sure. He can blow spit to kingdom come. I am trying to distract him from this because there are plenty of people who will NOT appreciate this. Ty also has discovered that it is hysterical to blow rasberries on Tanner’s and Mama’s legs. It hits our tickle spots and Tanner and I can’t help but laugh. Unfortunately though, allowing Ty the opportunity to tickle us occasionally results in a bite! He will be in the middle of blowing and then all of a sudden clamp down with the full mighty 6! Ouch!!!! Tanner and I do NOT appreciate that one!

Button Pusher

Ty is definitely a button pusher…literally. He makes Tanner pretty angry when he crawls over to the TV set and pushes the power button when Tanner is in the middle of a game!

Ty gets mama pretty unhappy too when he crawls over to my computer and powers of f my CPU while I am typing! Aaaghhh!!!!

I need button pushing toys for Ty’s birthday party. Let him push his own buttons!:)

Stimulation Issues?

Doesn’t it seem that each week I have to highlight at least one “strange” incident of the week? It’s always something…

The other night, I was watching Ty standing up at Tanner’s TV. He does this all the time. While watching, I was wondering if Ty likes standing at the TV this way because he can see better. Still hard to tell how bad his eyesight actually is (though he has been crossing them more often again so I know we are far from being out of the woods). After a little bit, he started shaking his head. Ty has done this since he was teeny tiney, when he is over stimulated, being social, or very tired, he shakes his head back and forth. So far all this was typical Ty behavior…then he started hitting his head against the TV. He did it hard enough to hurt himself and he started crying. What is THAT all about? One more new thing to capture my attention…sshhhheeeshh. I haven’t seen a repeat episode but I will be watching this (of course).

Eating

We thought that our feeding issues were going to be a thing of the past when he finally learned to take food off a spoon. Nope. He still will only take on average 1 baby food jar a day (if that). He refuses it after a few bites most of the time. He is not doing any better with solids either. He doesn’t particularly care for any solid food other than fruit puffs and even when he does want something, he almost always chokes. I had to pull him out of his high chair and turn him upside down this week for choking on the baby food dried apple bites which are the size of a tic tac! Thought I would try something different for him, but just as always…he choked. I am wondering if we will end up back in ST for this ultimately. Not sure how bad his OMI issues will be (Oral Motor Immaturity). He did LOVE Papa’s chocolate shake from Wendy’s last night though and was jumping up and down begging for each bite! This was a big deal!

Crawling

Ty officially can crawl – he chooses not too. When it seems like the best way to get somewhere, he will do it with ease and perfection, otherwise he just prefers the army crawl.

Crying

Here is a question for other mom’s. I have noticed that Ty is sounding a tiny bit croupy when he cries this week. He doesn’t sound croupy any other time and has no other sign of illness. Earlier in the week, I know he aspirated some water in the bathtub. How long would water stay in a kids lungs I wonder? The bath is tough because he will just dive his head in without caution and next thing you know he is sputtering to high heaven.

BHS (Breath Holding Spells)

I did a little more research on BHS this week and found a few things that I thought were interesting.

This article had some interesting things to say.

1. Ty’s symptoms do seem to be BHS

2. BHS that is severe usually begins in infancy, less severe starts around a year of age. Ty’s first BHS incident happened last July when he was only 2 months corrected. They specifically mentioned that the youngest age this tends to occur is 2 months for the severe type. Hoping this is not indicative of what lies ahead. He actually ended up in the Children’s Hospital for 6 days after that event. The reason was because he kept having apnea (sleep apnea) and the events that day were more serious. Then that night when he started crying in anger, he turned blue on me. At the hospital he had another sleep apnea incident though minor. Interesting how these two things were happening together.

3. This article said that for children who have them more than once a day, they sometimes treat with oral Theophylline. Interesting. Ty was on oral Theophylline until probably Nov or Dec. Wonder if this contributed to keeping these incidents at bay earlier on?

4. Thought it was interesting that the article mentioned BHS may be tied to low iron. Ty had a low hematicrit for a long time and he just went off iron supplements in Jan.

This article has me concerned that Ty may end up with a more severe form of BHS as his started at such a young age. On the other hand, we have not had a major problem with it and he has only advanced to the point of turning blue (from BHS) twice – the July incident and then last week. My question then is, does that mean it will be a rare occurrence or is he likely to advance to a more severe state because this is the common age bracket when it starts getting bad? Hmmmm….hoping the former.

It also keeps mentioning “otherwise healthy babies”…. I wouldn’t call Ty “otherwise healthy” with the neuro issues I know he has so I wish I could find info on babies with BHS and intraventricular bleeds. Wonder if there has been any study on this? Haven’t been able to find any.

Ty has not had any serious episodes this week but I have warded off several when he first started to hold his breath.

Family Night

In the past, we have all gathered at Papa and Sweetie’s for family night on Friday’s. This weekly gathering has been upset by Ty’s lockdown. Yesterday we finally had a “family night”. It was crazy! Sadly, Brooke had her wisdom teeth pulled this week so they couldn’t be there, but we had 5 of the 7 kids all together anyhow. I posted some pictures to the new April album.

Home On The Range

April 29, 2005

How do you know when you are a really great parent (LOL)?

When your 3 year old sings Home on the Range like this:

“Home…home on the wange. Where the deer and antelope OBEY….”

I heard Tanner singing his version yesterday and I LOVED it! I must be such a great mom if even the deer and antelope obey in our house!!!! And Brooke would say….get all your bragging done now because Ty will be singing:

“Home…home on the wange. Where the deer and antelope spit hay…”

LOL

WeeMote

Tanner has a new favorite. His daddy bought him a WeeMote. Pretty cool little deal. It is a child size remote with only a few buttons that are colored. They can turn the tv on and off, mute the sound, affect the volume (though you can limit this), and then have 5 channel options that they can surf through. Working well! We got it off ebay if you are interested.

XBox Groundation

Tanner is officially grounded from the XBox. He is so serious about this sport that he can’t quite make it to the potty in time if he is playing. HE NEVER has this problem any other time either!!!! We decided to ground him from XBox for one week to see if that would get the point across. If it doesn’t, than he is apparently to young to be putting this kind of attention into something. Good grief.

However, I am TOTALLY AMAZED by his ability. Before his groundation, he asked me to watch him play. I can’t tell you how blow away I was by his skills. I would think that a 3 year old, IF they could play an XBOX game, would do everything the same way everytime, same weapons, same characters, same planets, etc. Nope. Jim has actually taught Tanner strategy. Here are a few examples:

* He knows what landscape is on each planet and cycles through where he will play.
* He doesn’t play the same character twice in a row because he likes the different advantages of different characters and he can tell you what they are (example…certain guys can fly…apparently)
* He knows how to operate the vehicles as well and even knows how to alert the vehicles and tell them to wait for him as he is running to catch them.
* I saw a stand alone weapon unit (revolving machine gun thingy) and I asked Tanner if he knew how to operate it. He demonstrated how if you push a certain button you can jump in and out of it to take it over. THEN he told me that there wasn’t anyone to shoot right now so he had to go “help his guys”. In other words, “Mom I don’t have time to be showing you tricks of the trade because my men need me.” Sheeshh.
* I watched him go after his enemy, advance from behind a wall, decide to change out his weapon, back up behind the wall again, change to a different weapon, advance and destroyed his enemy. All done quickly with obvious skill. My mouth dropped open.

The PINK Book

Sometimes I get a little organizational crazy. Recently I put all of our CD’s and DVDs in DVD books. I then realized that it was hard to find what I was looking for so I put a number label on each page and made an access database to categorize them and print out reports referring to the label. These reports were put in a pink book and is stored alongside the DVD books. Aunt Beck came over to watch the boys this week for a bit while I went to the Dr. with Jim (Jim is having terrible allergy issues right now). While we were gone, Tanner asked to watch Lord of the Rings. He brought Aunt Beck the DVD Book and then gave her the Pink Book. He showed her how to look up the movies, find the number, and then look up the corresponding number in the DVD Book. What is impressive to me about this is that I had no idea he knew I had this system going. I have never shown this to him, nor have I looked up stuff in his presence (that I can think of). I am always impressed with how much he observes. A little scary isn’t it?

The Bear Hunt

Tanner’s new favorite game. We play it like this:

Both of us clap our hands on our legs (walking sound):

Mommy say’s: I’m going on a bear hunt

Tanner say’s: I’m going on a bear hunt

Mommy: I’m not scared

Tanner: I not scared

Mommy: Are you?

Tanner: Nope

Mommy: Not Me!

Mommy: STOP! I see a big creek! How are we going to get across it?

Our story goes on and on and on until I am begging to kill that dumb bear and get on with my day. We never actually find the bear either because we spend too much time hunting dinosaurs and killing rattlesnakes and cooking them for dinner. Tanner even caught me some Koala bears this week. I usually start out with the STOP but generally he doesn’t like where I take the story so he insists each time that it is HIS turn and he gives me the stop and sets the story up. Tanner is very good at pretending so I am very amused by this game. I do get tired of the dinosaurs though. Somehow they make it into every story. As a side point, he always makes sure to mention which Jurassic Movie the dinosaur is from. Yes…he actually knows this information. Weird.

Morning Glory

Have I mentioned that both of my boys wake up happy happy? What a wonderful way to start the day! Tanner is especially happy when Ty wakes him. He gives Ty this look that say’s “THANK YOU for being the first face I got to see today”. Nothing more precious.

Did you know that the Saturday before Mother’s Day each year is the official “Birthmother’s Day” holiday? Do you know a birthmom who might need some love and support this year? Consider sending a card, or flowers, or even a phone call on May 7th. A little bit of love goes a long long way.

Birthmom Buds has a new line of cards that would be perfect for this holiday. Check them out here.

Ty and Amanda

Ty and Amanda - he liked her cell phone:)

I Am A Birthmother

April 28, 2005

With Birthmother’s Day on the near horizen, I have been looking for opportunities to promote this celebration (thus the recent postings). Coley, founder of Birthmom Buds, emailed me an article she had written about being a birthmother and I asked her permission to share it with you. You all get to hear my point of view in regards to adoption ALL the time, this time I want you to hear the heart of a birthmom. (You might need some kleenex…I did).

I AM A BIRTHMOTHER
by Coley Lambert – Strickland

I am a birth mother. I relinquished my baby in an open adoption arrangement,” I say with pride in my voice and a smile on my face to people in town when they inquire about my shrunken belly but do not see me with a baby in a stroller.

“I wonder why she did that. She’s obviously not a teenager. Must have dropped out of school or something,” the cashier, thinks when she hears the girls reply.

“She probably doesn’t even know who the baby’s daddy is,” another person thinks.

“I bet she does drugs,” a man ponders as his prescription is being filled.

“Is she homeless? Does she even have a job? Could she simply not afford an abortion? So she gave her newborn baby away to strangers,” races an older lady’s mind as she walks off in disgust.

“I bet she didn’t love her kid either,” says the adoptee in her mid twenties who had just found out after years of untruths that she was in fact adopted.

A birth mother does drugs, is a teenager, is homeless, is poor, is addicted to drugs, promiscuous, lazy, cannot get a job, does not love or care for her baby, and many more are all STEREOTYPES. Where do these stereotypes come from? I don’t think that anyone is quite sure. In generations before, there were many instances in which teenagers did get pregnant and were forced to place their babies in closed adoptions and were told by their parents and other adoption professionals not to think of those babies anymore. There are statistics that show children were forced in adoption because of mothers who used drugs their entire pregnancy. All birth mothers, those who relinquished a child 2 months ago or those who relinquished a child 20 years ago, both will tell anyone that would listen how that was the hardest, most selfless thing they have ever done. But yet, we carry a burden by the way society treats us.

Am I any of these untruths or stereotypes??? No, I am not. I am a birth mother, and I am proud of that. But I am not a teenager, in fact I am in my mid twenties, educated, have a decent job, and I am engaged to the most wonderful guy in the south. I could have paid for an abortion, but do not feel that I have permission from God. It is in God’s plan who lives or dies, not mine. So, I prepared to keep this life and parent it until God sent Scott and Angee into our lives. They were looking for a baby to adopt and we had so many things in common and we knew this was in God’s plan. We just followed our orders.

I did, do, and always will love my baby so very much. And his adoptive family loves him very much too. Whenever I see my baby’s adoptive Mom with him and both of their faces are glowing and cheeks are rosy and his little small smile lit up and her big “my life is blessed” smile, I know that this is God’s gift to me. I helped play a part in answering their prayers.

Knowing that I helped God complete a plan, excuses some of the burdens society places on me, but that doesn’t mean that it still did not hurt. When I was pregnant and having an ultra sound, the doctor advised me that it would be best for me not to see it. After my pregnancy, when I was having a horrible time with post partum depression, my doctor blamed it solely on the adoption and asked me why my life was so bad I had to give the baby away. If I had been as strong as I am now, I would have looked at her and said, “My life’s not bad, it’s perfect. I followed in God’s plan.” But all I did then was look away. I was prepared to deal with the sadness and empty feelings in my stomach, but I was not prepared that society would make me feel that it was not ok to have a baby and share that life with someone else.

The next time you are in the grocery store or at a restaurant and you hear a courageous young lady say that her baby was placed in adoption. Instead of thinking how could she do that, why don’t you think how thankful that baby’s adoptive parents are that she was able to give them that gift. You could thank her for them or commend her for her courage and strength. And then watch the little miracle that will take place on her face.

This past week, Coley shared her story on LetsTalkAdoption.com. You can still hear it here.

Birthmom Buds

April 28, 2005

When Ty was born, Coley Strickland (co-founder of Birthmom Buds) wrote a note of encouragement to me. Our story caught Coley’s attention for two reasons. First, Coley’s son Noah has epilepsy and cerebral palsy. She understood all too well the impacts of prematurity and difficult births. Second, Coley is a birthmother.

Coley, along with co-founder, Lani, created an online support group for birthmom’s a few years ago when they realized how few resources were available to birthmom’s. “Birthmom Buds” was born out of their desire to give love, comfort, and encouragement to hurting and lonely birthmothers.

If you know a birthmother that could use some tender love and care, please refer them to birthmombuds.com. I believe that those of us who feel compelled to stand up for life, must also choose to be loving advocates for birthmother’s and look for opportunities to support them.

Birthmom Buds serves the needs of more than just birthmothers.

For birthmothers, Birthmom Buds offers:

* A place to share her story – honestly
* A place to meet and connect with other birthmothers
* A place to read the writings of other birthmothers (example poetry) and submit her own contributions.
* A place to grieve and a place to heal
* Loving support from those who have gone the road ahead of them
* A Buddy System (matching birthmoms with another birthmother in her same state if possible)
* Hospital Experience Plans

Birthmom buds also offers a weekly chat time, and a birthmother’s bible study.

For POTENTIAL birthmothers…those contemplating adoption, Birthmom Buds offers:

* A mentoring program to help potential birthmother’s as they decide upon the future of their child.

For Adoptive mothers, Birthmom Buds offers:

*Advice on Dear Birthmom Letters
* Tips on writing letters, first meeting, first phone call
* Gift Ideas
* Birthmom Card Line
* Adoption Resource Links

For anyone who feels committed to life and would like to support birthmothers:

*Consider making a donation to Birthmom Buds for Birthmother care packages that are distributed to birthmothers 2 to 3 weeks after child has been placed for adoption.

*An opportunity to see inside the heart of a birthmother – to hear her and understand her – and LOVE her.

I am excitedly supportive of Coley and Lani’s ministry and thought this may be a good time to break my normal protocal and post an adverstisement! Bookmark this link!