Thank you all for sharing in the lives of our three amazing children- Mairead, Jack, and Ben. We hope you visit often!

Friday, August 13, 2010


We had something big planned for Mairead's birthday this year. It was really a gift for all three kids and something we had talked about for a while, but the timing worked out so that it seems like a great birthday present for our three year old. We (Dave and me, my parents, my grandmother, and Dave's mom and Ivan) all chipped in to get the kids a beautiful swingset for the yard.

The excitement really started on Thursday when our friends from WhiteTail Property Mangagement came to level the ground. There was a truck RIGHT in the yard! We had to set up breakfast in the den and let the kids watch. They had no idea why the truck was there, but they were pretty excited about it! The boys kept saying, "I see car! I see car! Vrmmm, vrmm!" Mairead said, "It's a tractor in the yard!" And then proudly said, "C-A-T. That spells 'cat.' She is so smart when it comes to things like that! She has just recently figured out the idea that some letters are put together to spell things. It's very cute.

Today, the swingset company came and set up the big surprise in the yard and we were able to present the kids with it after dinner. At first, Mairead saw Dave and I in the yard and said, "Hi Mom, Daddy," and didn't even seem to notice the giant swingset. Then, she kind of had this moment like, "wait a minute, this is right in my yard!" They loved it!

This is the, "Hey, this is pretty cool!" moment. She just yelled, "a slide!" Like, hey, did you guys see this slide RIGHT in our yard???

There is still a big pile of mulch to be spread under the set, so Mairead got straight to work on that.

This was the first time she was really ever on a 'big kid' swing and she did an awesome job. She held her balance and tried to kick her feet to 'pump.' I was so proud of her- this shows a lot of coordination, core strength, and balance, and it shows that she is more sure of the ground beneath her-- all things we have been working on.

The boys are not fans of swings, but they LOVE the slide!

What they were really interested in, though, was the dirt. Because they had just leveled the ground yesterday, the dirt is still very loose and dusty. And it is everywhere. Who cares if there is a swingset when there is a ton of dirt AND a pile of mulch?

Oh, Ben.

Jack was only slightly cleaner.

Yikes. Bath time was a serious project tonight!

The kids had a great time and we are really looking forward to a lot more fun filled days on the swings. Thanks to everyone who helped to make this possible for us!
In other news, Mairead had her three-year checkup on Monday. She did really well and is still a growing girl. She is 37lbs and FORTY inches tall! 90th percentile for weight and 97th for height. That's our girl! I did a ton of 'back to school shopping' today since all three kids are in all new sizes for Fall, and I have to buy 5T for her. I'm not ready for little girl clothes- wasn't she a baby just yesterday?
The boys also got new sneakers today. Taking three kids (even with two adults) shoe shopping is quite the adventure, but they all did really well. They boys have the exact same size feet. It's amazing to me just how physically identical they are and yet how their personalities are SO incredibly different.
Anyway, back to the doctor's appointment... the doctor thinks that Mairead is physically in great health. She saw better eye contact and was happy to hear about her language improvements since our visit six months ago. She, too, was in disbelief that the schools are not willing to give her preschool services, but we are still working on that. Unfortunately, no progress at all can be made over the summer, which is incredibly frustrating. Even worse- I found out today that even though the SpEd department told me to just wait for a letter assigning her to a school, I, in fact, was supposed to go down to the schools and register her. So, all this time, I assumed she was registered via her IEP, and that I should just wait as instructed. Um, no. The registration office had NO RECORD of her. Thank God I called to check on the progress of her school assignment-- otherwise, I never would have known that she wasn't registered. Apparently, at her IEP meeting, they were supposed to give me a form and some other info to get her registered, but they never did. This whole process is incredibly frustrating and time consuming, so I hope we can get somewhere once school opens in the fall and the administration is back to work.
The pediatrician also agreed with our idea to have Mairead see a developmental pediatrician, so we are working on that appointment. Children's Hospital has a 7-8 month wait- -yikes-- so we are on the list there. She is not certain that a neuropsych eval is right for her at this point because she is so young, but a developmental pedi can determine what is best. The main reason to have this testing done would be to give us some 'ammunition' with which we can go to the schools and present them with hard data about her delays. Unfortunately, this will take a loooong time. Lots of people are looking for a reason or cause for a kid's delays, but we already know that part, so our case is a little different. We'll see how things go from here in that regard.

On a 'poor me' whiny note, even though I am fully aware of Mairead's delays, it totally sucks every time I fill out a form that asks, "Can your child do x,y,z? And I have to write, "No, no, no." Or, "do you have concerns about a,b,c,?" Yes, yes, yes." I hate when negative stuff is in writing. I want to be able to write down all of the challenges she has overcome lately, but there really isn't a form for that... And, she is healthy, so that's the important thing!!!

She is doing really well lately- so many new words, phrases, and even sentences. And, it seems that she is getting more concepts (like paying money to get things like fries or toys). She seems to be remembering more from past events, which is great, and she is a lot of fun to play with now that she is pretending more. The only drawback to that is that she has ten thousand 'friends' who have to come to bed with her at night. God forbid Dave or I forgets the ONE animal she has to have-- we have to go all the way back down and find the dog or rabbit or whatever it is!

Jack seems to be the talker of the twins. He knows a ton of words and phrases, most recently, "more juice, help please, me down, and I see cat." Ben knows a lot of words, too, the cutest of which is 'wiggle wiggle' which he says and then does. Adorable. He also says, "thank you" when you give him something. And, when he gives you something, for that matter. Ben is physically unbelievable with his amazing balance and ability to climb things. I really could do without the latter skill, though.

I have gone on long enough- thanks for reading, everyone!