Sunday, January 29, 2012

Changing Lives

So, my in-laws were in town this weekend, so Brandon and I took advantage and went out on a double date last night with some very good friends of ours.  We got on the discussion of having children with special needs sometime during the night, because everyone loves to talk about their kids as much as possible. :)

Our friends were telling us that they always used to worry about having a child with special needs, because who doesn't.  We all know, that we are all uncomfortable with children with special needs at first and we always think "I wonder how the parents deal."  The conversation went on to giving Brandon and I so much credit.  They said that after meeting us and spending so much time with us and our family, that they don't worry about that anymore.  They now understand that no matter what, every child is a blessing, and they don't even think twice about it.

I know that we are friends, and they are "supposed" to say things like that, but it made me smile from ear to ear and it made me feel like we are making some kind of difference in the world.  We hope that we can continue to make a difference in other people's lives as we raise our children and show them off to the world. :)

Both girls are doing great.  We had 2 sets of grandparents here yesterday, so it was a full house and the girls got ALL kinds of attention. :) We have gotten Mikaela to take a few steps on her OWN when she is the mood! I am thinking she will be walking in the next month or so.

Lorelei has the army crawl down pat!  She has now taken to getting on her hands and her feet!  Kind of like the Downward Dog position in yoga.  We are not sure what she is trying to do, but I sent a picture of it to our PT and she said that it just shows how much stronger she is getting. :) We have noticed that Lorelei will do things when she is ready, so we know the crawling will come....when she's ready! :)

Monday, January 23, 2012

Over the Snow!

So, the girls and I have decided that we are over waiting for snow and want warmer weather so we can enjoy the outdoors! :)

Everything has been going fantastic! Between work and the girls, I don't feel like I get two seconds to breathe by myself and I am sure that Brandon feels the same way.  Both girls had check ups last week and are both a little over 20 lbs.  Only a month and a half to go and they will be a year old! I can't believe that!

Mikaela is cruising right along.  Right now, we are trying to get her to stand on her own so she can start taking a few steps when she is ready.  She will stand for a few seconds and then plops down, but we are getting there. :) She is just as mischevious as ever!  She even has the grin to match it! :) She is constantly climbing over and into everything, including her sister!

Lorelei has been doing very well.  She is now crawling in her own way.  She has an army type crawl going.  She will get herself in the crawling position ALL the time and rock back and forth, but never goes anywhere with it.  We are working with her on that now! :)  She has had several doctor appointments lately to determine if she has a mild hearing loss.  The conclusion we finally came to today is that she needs tubes.  Her ear canals are so small that even when the tiniest bit of fluid gets in there, she loses some of her hearing.  We are not sure if we will wait a little until she grows some, or just go down to UVA and do it ASAP.  I am worried that if we wait, it will impact her speech and we don't want that. :)

Other than that, everything is the same! Brandon and I are doing the Polar Plunge the first weekend of Feburary.  Him, the actual plunge, and I, the 5k.  All proceeds go to the Virginia Special Olympics, so we hope to make this a yearly thing and contribute to Lorelei's Special Olympics in the future! :)

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

New Year, New Developments

It’s a new year and more posts on this blog would be nice.  Therefore I am making it my goal to post more often.  As of yet I’m not sure this page has really done everything that I hoped it would.  I wanted this page to provide hope and support for other families if they are having a difficult time.  Ofcourse what else is to be expected when you are blessed with twins than to have your whole world be consumed by babies!  Free time is almost non-existent.  That being said let’s update everyone.
                When we last posted we had just taken Lorelei to the Down’s Clinic at UVA.  Since then the girls have been doing amazing.  Mikaela is still thriving and getting into everything!  She pulls herself to stand and walks along holding on to stable objects all the time.  She crawls over everything including Lorelei.  She has begun to be able to pick up small objects with her index finger and thumb which is awesome.  She has also begun to realize consequences of her actions.  She now has figured out that if she bangs things together they make noise.  This has been a ton of fun for mom and I. 
                We have seen simply the beginning of the girls fighting.  When one girl has something the other one wants it.  This usually results in thievery and someone upset.  It’s an ongoing process and is funny to watch.  Don’t let yourself be fooled into thinking “poor Lorelei” because she takes things from Mikaela just as often as she has them stolen. 
                Lorelei is doing wonderfully.  She was very fussy the past weeks and we never felt a tooth coming in on the top of her mouth.  Out of curiosity I checked the bottom of her mouth and found a tooth beginning to come in on the bottom left side.  It is unfortunate that they’re not coming in the order they should but atleast they’re coming in.  We often hear of children with Down Syndrome taking much longer to get to this point so we are excited.  She has like her sister begun to try and use her index finger and thumb to pick up some small objects.  This is not always done with success.  She is still more comfort using a “raking” technique to pick up something but we are working on the skill with her at every meal time.  Lorelei can stand against the couch or when you hold her hands which is great.  The girls watched a whole episode of “Dora the explorer” the other night while standing against the couch.  I have a sneaking suspicion that mom and I will learn all the songs eventually. 
                Lorelei has also taken to eating food with great enthusiasm.  The old days of fighting with her to keep it in and not push it out with her large tongue are now gone.  She can’t get enough food most days.  A very exciting new development is that she has begun to crawl forward a little.  She usually does this when she wants something that is front of her.  She used to roll to the sides and pivot to get there.  It’s not all coordinated yet, arms and legs.  She uses her ankle flexion and extension more than anything else but is starting to get her knees under her and push forward. 
                Most of these new developments are blessings that come from Lorelei’s determination to move along with her sister.  We work with her every day as does our nanny but it really comes from LC (Lorelei Cristina).  She has done some amazing things so whenever a therapist comes to see her they all say “wow, she looks great” or “she is doing so well”.  These little girls are amazing and push Maria and I to keep those expectations high.  They have leaped over every bar set for them so far and I’m sure they will continue to do so.