Friday, July 30, 2010

Happy Birthday to Gracie

Gracie turned three today. We're all so tired from the day, we'll have to fill you in on her special day another time.

Lisa, Jeff, and 3 year old Gracie

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Thursday - The Last Day of Being Two

Gracie had a great restful night. She awoke at 5:00 a.m. and was not going back to sleep. She really didn't want to snuggle with daddy while I was showering and getting ready for work, so I let her in the bathroom with me while I put on my make-up. That was an experience in itself. Gracie is a sensory seeker, she NEEDS to touch everything. I'm amazed I got any make-up on myself.

Gracie was a happy girl when I dropped her off at daycare. She got to play in the pool today and all of the daycare kids made birthday cards for her. They are so cute!!!!

Gracie was very tired tonight. We had a few tantrums, but it was a much better night. When I got home Gracie and Jeff greeted me outside and Gracie decided we needed to go on a walk, which we did around the neighborhood. Later in the evening she enjoyed watching Jeff out the window while he mowed the lawn.

She essentially asked to go to bed tonight. She handed me her blankie and wanted up. I think it took her two seconds to fall asleep. She was fast asleep by 7:45 p.m.

Today is Gracie's last day of being two. Tomorrow we will have a three year old in our house. I need to make the blog short tonight, as I have a cake to frost and decorate.

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Wednesday - 6 Month Neurology Check

Gracie had a GREAT night's sleep! So did I! Ahhhh, rest!!! She awoke in a good mood and after breakfast we all three (Jeff, Gracie, and I) headed to the clinic for an 8:00 a.m. appointment with Gracie's pediatric neurologist, Dr. N. The desk attendant's, as always, were awesome with her. They take her for walks around the desk area and one from the opposite desk chases her and she finds this to be great fun.

When Dr. N. came in the room, Gracie got all excited and had the biggest smile. She gave her a great big hug and sat on Dr. N.'s lap for a good portion of the visit. At the end, she snuggled in and just didn't want to go. Dr. N. was loving that too. Seizure-wise everything looks great. She's remained at her current weight and height for quite some time (40 lbs., and 41" tall) and as long as she remains there and seizures are under control, we'll keep her at the same med levels. We talked at great length about Gracie's aggressive behavior with tantrums, hair pulling, and biting when she is at home (mostly in the evening). We don't see this behavior too much otherwise, thankfully. We know this has alot to do with her being tired also, but we see it at times even when she is not tired. Interestingly, she doesn't exhibit this behavior at daycare, and she doesn't if she is just one-on-one with Jeff or I, but if we are both home, heaven help us all. I had inquired about B-6 supplements for this behavior and we may consider this down the road. For now, Dr. N. gave us some great advice on how to handle this behavior and how to be consistent 100% of the time. So there were ALOT of time outs at our house tonight.

We do know that escalated tantrums are a characteristic of many kids with Sotos Syndrome and we also know that kids with sensory integration disorder can keep it together quite well through out the day, but at night when they are tired and are home with their parents or the people they are most familiar with, that is when they just lose control. So for now, we will try the advice we received and if that doesn't work, we'll consider other options such as a behavior psychologist, or some more sessions with the sensory integration specialist in OT.

Dr. N. assured us that much of what she is exhibiting is two year old behavior at it's finest. She also said this is a good thing as long as we handle it well, as again it shows she has the knowledge to manipulate the world around her and that means her little neurons are firing beautifully.

Gracie is now sleeping very peacefully. Sweet dreams in Hello Kitty pj's.

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Tuesday - A Balloon!

Gracie had quite a good night (thank heavens) but awoke at 4:30 a.m. and was awake for the day. She tried mightily to fall asleep, but sleep wouldn't come. So she had some yogurt for breakfast and then took me to the TV to turn on Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.

Gracie's early education teacher and her OT from the Birth-to-Three program had their last appointment with Gracie today. This was their last visit since she is turning three and has graduated to the next step...preschool. Emily, her teacher, brought her a balloon for her birthday. To those of you that know Gracie well, you know she LOVES balloons. This one has fish, a turtle, a shark, and some other fun sea creatures on it. A huge hit. The balloon is a testament to how well Emily knows our little girl...her likes, her strengths. Gracie was truly blessed to have had Emily as a teacher.

After that, Jeff took Gracie to daycare and I headed to work. The baby at daycare was very sick and had to go to the doctor, so Jeff picked Gracie up early today and they hung out this afternoon. Jeff isn't feeling well, so he thought perhaps they could take a nap. Although tired, Gracie really didn't think that was a good idea.

After work, I sent Jeff to bed and Gracie and I hung out. We danced and sang and snuggled a bit too. She was so tired that she was a little off kilter. To show how mad she is sometimes she throws things on the floor. It doesn't matter what - just whatever is in her path. Well we've resolved that we will be very calm about this and when she calms down she is expected to pick up her "mess". Tonight she got mad three times and had to pick up a bag of buns, a bottle of water, and a magnet from the fridge. She'll be three at the end of the week, it's time for a little accountability for her actions.

It took Gracie about two seconds to fall asleep tonight and she is breathing so much easier. I'm hoping for a nice restful night.

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Monday, July 26, 2010

Home with Mom & Dad

Gracie's fever continued through the night. I gave her more Tylenol at 1:00 a.m. and then she awoke fever free and that continued through the day. Her temperature ran warmer than usual for her, but she didn't have a fever. She also had a better night sleep, although still restless. She cried out a few times and once she just started laughing. I'm hoping it was just a good dream. I know there are laugh seizures, so I hope that wasn't the case.

Jeff and I split the day and I stayed home from work with her in the morning and he stayed home this afternoon. She was a very good girl for me this morning and she did good for Jeff this afternoon too. She took a 35 minute nap today and by supper time we could tell she was low on sleep. She was upset about something and couldn't tell us or show us what and had a major meltdown. It took us quite a while to get her calmed down from that one.

Gracie didn't have much of an appetite today either. A few crackers here and there, a half of a banana, and tonight she asked for yogurt instead of ice cream for her seizure meds. That surprised me, but I was only too happy to accomodate that request. She drank a bit more today, but still isn't drinking as much as I would like her too.

All in all we are on the mend. If she remains fever free through the night, I think she is ready to go back to daycare tomorrow. Her eyes looks so much better too. Amazing how quickly those drops work.

And on a fun note...tonight in the bathtub Gracie points to her rubber duck and says "duck", which we know that she can say. Then she says "quack, quack, quack......." about a hundred times. She thought she was hilarious. Actually, it did tickle my funny bone.

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Sunday, July 25, 2010

And Now A Fever

Gracie had a horribly restless night and kept waking up, not being able to breathe despite lots of pillows, a mommy to lay on, and a humidifier going in her room. At 2:45 a.m. she awoke and just could not sleep and could not breathe. I walked while holding her for about an hour, then I took her downstairs where it is a bit cooler and we sat in the rocking chair where she could sit up on me and breathe better. She slept pretty good for the next two hours while we rocked. She awoke at about 5:30 a.m. and was up for the morning.

Gracie didn't have much of an appetite today and she began running a fever of 101.5. We are giving her Tylenol every 4 hours to keep the fever don't mess with fevers when the child has a seizure disorder. Fevers cause the seizure threshold to lessen. She took an hour nap this morning and another hour this afternoon. This afternoon when she awoke she was totally miserable. She just layed on her bed while I read books to her and every once in a while she would raise her little head to say a word that was in a book, before I could get to it. You can tell we read ALOT and she is memorizing parts of her books.

Grandma and Grandpa D. came over for a little while this afternoon, but Gracie was still feeling crummy. She started to feel a little better before they left. She was also going stir crazy about then having been cooped up in the house all day. So later this evening when it had cooled off, we took her outside for a walk/stroller ride. That did wonders for mood.

Gracie also took a nasty fall in the kitchen today. I'm not quite sure what happened, I think she might have gone around the corner too fast on stocking feet and lost her balance. She crashed and landed all sprawled out on her stomach. Gracie rarely cries when she falls or gets hurt, but there were definite tears for that one. She also has been limping all night and she is not a drama queen when it comes to injuries, so I hope it isn't anything serious. We'll have to watch that closely.

Gracie is now sleeping and I'm close behind. I'm hoping her night is much more restful than last night. I'm also hoping her fever goes away.

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Saturday, July 24, 2010

A Nasty Cold and....Pink Eye!!!

Gracie had a tired day yesterday. Her cold is getting her down. She had an extremely restless night last night, but did sleep on and off from 8:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m. When she awoke this morning her eye was very swollen, mattery, and pink. I was pretty sure we had a case of pink eye going on, so while Jeff headed to band practice, I headed to the doctor with Gracie. Mommy guessed right. The doctor (who was awesome) said he is very conservative about treating pink eye and usually has the individual wait 2 or 3 days to see if it resolves on it's own. That being said, he indicated Gracie's was so bad that he prescribed drops right away.

She doesn't love getting the drops in her eyes. It takes me sort of sitting on her pinning her hands to her side and Jeff holding her head, so I can get the drops in. She is such a character though. She fights the drops, but thinks it's hilarious when I tell her I'm going to sit on her and then do. Granted I'm not putting my weight on her.

Gracie could not fall asleep for a nap. We tried on and off for about two hours and she just could not relax enough to fall asleep. So she was a bit moody on and off today. We did take a long walk but she rode in the stroller for a good part of it. We made a strawberry smoothie to cool off with after our walk. We laced Gracie's smoothie with seizure meds.

Gracie was extremely verbal today and just so cognizant of everything we tell her, whether she likes it or not. She pointed at the closet door in her room, I told her it was a "door". She said "door" a few times. Then tonight when she was going to bed, she pointed to it again and we talked about what it was. The she pointed to the window and I told her it was a "window". She corrected me and told me it was a "curtain". Every morning, I tell her I'm going to open the "curtain" now.

She had a really hard time falling asleep tonight, but finally did. She was definitely mommy's girl today.

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Thursday - A Nasty Cold and Healthy Ears

As I suspected last night as I put Gracie to bed, she has come down with a nasty cold. Her nose is runny, her eyelids heavy, but no fever, so we headed to daycare. She did okay and I picked up a grumpy girl at 1:00 p.m. to head to the clinic for a hearing test and a re-check on her ears. Any time I asked her if she was okay on the trip to the clinic, she would shake her head and tell me "no". I did get a smile when I asked her if she wanted me to turn on some music.

We had been asked to come at 2:00 p.m. rather than 2:30 p.m as was our previous appointment time. Now I'm not sure why. We were there about 20 minutes early, so all in all we had an hour and a half wait. Gracie ran around the lobby for some of the time, I held and bounced her for another part of the time. Finally we were called in for the hearing test. Gracie would not put on the head phones, so they had to do it without. She did really well and was able to hear very quiet sounds. I knew there was nothing wrong with her hearing.

Because of the length of our wait, Jeff was able to join us for her appointment with the doctor...the one that had been hand picked for us by her departing physician who we loved, the one we came in early for so he could make his plane. Only to find out, because of the wait we were assigned someone else...a physician I did not care for at all. His bedside manner had much to be desired, it almost seemed we were a bother. The nurse that was there and helped us was awesome and made up for his lack of personality. I actually had met her at the Good Food store one day and she recommended the coconut milk yogurt that Gracie loves so much. She has a non-verbal daughter and signed with Gracie. She signed to her that she was a pretty girl. I didn't catch what she said, but Jeff did.

Then we came home and had a nap and a lazy evening. Gracie was in a very good mood and was very snuggly, but it is obvious she doesn't feel great. We read alot of books. Jeff was reading a book to her and she was imitating all of his sounds. It's a repetitious book and soon she was adding in the right words where they belonged. When Jeff was all done reading it, she took it from him and said "my turn". Jeff and I both looked at each other in disbelief and then shared a smile and a silent cheer of her success. She was very talkative tonight.

Gracie is in bed now, but very restless. Her nose is all runny yet stuffed up, so she is having trouble breathing. I think it may be a long night.

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Wednesday - Pool Time

Gracie had a good night and didn't want to wake up this morning. She did enjoy when I sang to her. She was all snuggled in and when I suggested we get up and get some breakfast, she smiled, said "no" and snuggled in tighter. I did eventually convince her that breakfast was a good idea.

Jeff dropped Gracie off at daycare this morning and she had alot of outdoor time today. She got to swim in the kiddie pool twice today, as well as run through the sprinkler. When I came to pick her up she was enjoying a yummy glass of vanilla soy milk. Refreshing!

Gracie took a long nap this afternoon, but she still was quite tired from all of the physical activity and outdoor time. So tonight we just vegged watching You Tube kids songs and reading books. She enjoyed her bath too.

She fell asleep very quickly tonight. Tomorrow she goes to the clinic to get her ears checked -- it has been six weeks since her ear tube removal. She will have a hearing test (I guarantee there is nothing wrong with this young ladies hearing.) and then they will check the ear itself. I don't anticipate any problems. It's been so nice not having her pulling at her ears all the time.

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Monday & Tuesday

Gracie had a really good day yesterday and was in a fantastic mood last night. We spent most of the night outdoors. She hates coming inside and has huge tantrums when it is time to come in. It's usually a combination of "I don't want to come in" and "I am so tired"! Not a good mix. Gracie had a somewhat restless night, but awoke in a good mood. Marched me to the kitchen and to the fridge and informed me she wanted "gogurt".

Jeff took Gracie to daycare today and on the way out the door, unsolicited, she signed to me "I love you." That was a heart melter. I picked her up early as Emily, her early education teacher and Sandy, her physical therapist from the Birth-to-Three program came to work with her. Emily brought this great musical matt that you have to march on for it to make some fun musical sounds. That was a hit. We also took Emily and Sandy outside to watch Gracie play on her swing, slide, and playhouse and got some good suggestions on things to work on there to build strength. As Gracie turns three at the end of this month, this is was the last visit for Sandy. We will miss her alot! We have one more visit with Emily next week. We'll miss her alot too.

We also found out that there has been some changes due to some job openings and the preschool teacher we thought Gracie would have, she will not. The job is currently posted, so please pray that we get a good, understanding, patient, and motivating teacher for our little one.

Gracie's verbal skills continue to blossom. We've been working on counting and tonight on our walk around the neighborhood Gracie counted from 2 to 4 just out of the blue. She also requested the song "Bonnie the Beautiful Butterfly" and then did the actions with me. Tonight she was walking very fast up the hill and Jeff told her to be careful or she would fall on her nose. She immediately pointed to her nose. Last night Jeff would name body parts and she would point to them...she knows ear, nose, eyes, tongue, and teeth.

Hard to believe in a week and a half our little sweetie will turn three. Where did the time go?

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Fun in the Sun Sunday!

Gracie awoke in a good mood. We all headed to church and Gracie loved the music. As usual, when sermon time came....Gracie's patience wore out. I took her out of the service and we walked the halls. She even joined some of the Sunday school kids rooms for a little bit. She enjoyed taking friends for walks around the church before and after the service.

Then we went home and had some lunch. Gracie had too many snacks at church and on the way home, so didn't want her sandwich. I was able to get her to eat her peach though. Then it was nap time. She only slept an hour, but that was good enough to refresh her.

Then we headed to Home Depot and Target. Gracie was a good girl there. Then home to play outside. We took walks, wagon rides, we played on the swing and slide, and played a game she calls "chase". This is where she tries to get away from daddy and he catches her. She loves this game. She came in the house long enough to watch a couple of short videos and eat supper. We made hobo dinners on the grill and they were a big hit. Gracie also shared a popsicle with daddy. She is starting to really like them.

Gracie is now sleeping, but is very restless.

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Fun in the Sun

Gracie has had a couple of fun days in the sun! Yesterday at daycare she went to Oxbow Park and had a picnic lunch and got to see the animals. She was in such a good mood last night as she had taken a really long nap after her adventure, so we played outside most of the night.

Gracie is a total outside girl. She constantly asks to go outside and if she doesn't get her way, she gets so mad. We try to get her outside as much as possible.

Today it was a Gracie and mommy day as Jeff had to work. She slept in until 7:00 a.m. and then we got up, had breakfast, and just hung out for awhile at home getting some things done. Then we headed to the mall to see what deals we could get. We were thrilled to find summer clothes on mega sale and picked up a few things for this year, but also stocked up on some bigger sizes in case she has another growth spurt. If not, she can wear them next year.

After shopping, we ate lunch and Gracie took a 90 minute nap. When she awoke I put her in her swimsuit and we headed to Soldier's Field kiddie pool. She was tentative at first, but by the time we left, she was having a great time. I swear she is part fish. She sat in the water and kicked her legs and splashed (unfortunately tonight I discovered blisters on the back of her feet from rubbing on the bottom of the pool. She also saw other kids swimming around and she wanted to do that too, but doesn't quite have the hang of it, so she crawled around in the water. She wanted to make some friends, but we found that the kids and adults at the pool weren't all that friendly. A few were though.

After swimming we came home and had some ice cream with meds, followed up by an apple and peanut butter. That was a hit. Gracie was peanut butter from head to toe (literally) by the time she was done.

Jeff came home about 6:30 p.m., we took a walk outside, then a bath. After bath Gracie and Jeff danced to Gracie's favorite music --- Michael Jackson. She even knows alot of the words and says them right before the CD. I also notice her doing the exact same moves daddy makes at the same time in the song...even when she isn't watching daddy. She is definitely our music girl.

She was very chatty today and in the car she sang along to quite a few words of her Veggie Tales CD.

She is now sleeping. All the activity today made for a very tired girl.

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Thursday - A Walk to the Park

Gracie had another fairly restless night. She cried out in her sleep a number of times. Once so loud, Jeff came in to check on her from the other room. She awoke at 5:30 a.m. and was ready to start the day. She took me to the refrigerator and informed me she wanted "gogurt". Excellent!!!! It makes those seizure meds slide right down.

We had the tv on this morning as we were getting ready for work and all of a sudden we heard Gracie say in a really loud voice "Mickey". Yep, it was time for Mickey Mouse Clubhouse on Disney.

Gracie had a good day at daycare, she walked to the park and had a fun time, she ran through the sprinklers and did lots of playing today. She also fell on the sidewalk and skinned her knee. It didn't seem to bother her much though.

All of Gracie's fun activities made her a tired girl tonight. She ate very little for supper, we stuck her in the tub, did a little dancing, and then put her in bed. It took her about two seconds to fall asleep. Sweet dreams.

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Wednesday - Back to Daycare

Gracie had a fairly restless night, but awoke in a good mood this morning. We had some good snuggle time before we started our day. Gracie was a good girl and enjoyed singing on the way to daycare. She was happy to see her friends, although she wasn't sure she wanted to let go of my hand. When I told her it was time for me to go, she looked at me, gave me a big smile, and then held my hand tighter. After a big hug and kiss, she decided it was okay for me to leave.

Gracie had a good day at daycare. It was too hot to spend much time outside, but she did play with blocks today. This is something that Gracie has struggled with -- playing with toys that aren't musical. Blocks just don't register on the scale of fun things. Daycare is working with Gracie on playing with these types of toys, specifically while peer modeling. We are seeing success...although it is slow success.

When Jeff picked Gracie up she wasn't sure she wanted to go home, she was having too much fun. Jeff and Gracie had a good time dancing and playing until I got home. We had a light supper as it was too hot to eat or cook. After supper Gracie insisted upon going outside in the incredibly hot humid weather. Once there she looked like she was melting. So we turned on her sprinkler ball and that got her wet and a little livened up.

It was storming when Gracie went to bed and it was raining quite hard. She kept looking at me while she was laying down and she would sign "rain". I would confirm that she was correct and she would just smile in pride. She is now sleeping soundly.

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Tuesday - A Very Good Girl

Gracie slept in until just about 7:00 a.m. this morning and was in a great mood all day. We sent daddy golfing with Grandpa and Gracie and I had a "mommy and me" day. We did a little shopping in the morning for a few groceries and other items at Target, then to the health food store to replenish our supply of coconut milk yogurt -- a total God send -- as now that we have this we have no problems getting Gracie to take her seizure meds. She loves yogurt and can even say it. It sounds more like "gogurt", but you get the idea. Then it was home for lunch and after that we filled up her pool and let her splash for awhile.

I knew it was time for a nap when Gracie layed down on the kitchen floor. She slept for 2 hours before I had to wake her up for her OT appointment at the clinic. OT is not Gracie's favorite thing. We worked on many different things. We took a softer approach this appointment, yet being firm and making her finish things. We had been taking a tougher approach, but it was too much for her and we were seeing huge behavioral issues because of it. We saw no problems after this appointment, so I think this is a good approach. Grandpa dropped daddy off at the clinic, so Jeff was able to be at the appointment too.

The not so fun thing about getting to our appointment is that another driver backed into my car in the parking ramp. A nice dent in the front bumper, but no one was hurt and that is the important thing.

After the appointment we went to visit Grandma & Grandpa to pick up Jeff's golf clubs. Gracie had fun digging in the dirt. It was beautiful outside. Then home for supper and a nice walk outdoors before bath time. Then she got to dance with daddy before she went to bed.

Gracie was such a good girl all day. Very cooperative. Gracie is talking so much and I love to put the Veggie Tales CD on in the car and listen to her sing to it. It is so precious. Tonight she was sitting on Jeff's lap and she said "Gracie and daddy". You had to listen hard to make it out, but she definitely said it.

She is now sleeping and I had better join her shortly, it's back to work and daycare tomorrow.

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Monday, July 12, 2010

Monday - A Little Bit of Attitude

Gracie slept from 8:00 p.m. last night to 8:00 a.m. this morning, which is unheard of. She also took over a 2 hour nap. I think she was trying to recuperate from all the excitement of the weekend.

Gracie was extremely whiny, needy, and a bit aggressive with bites and hitting today. I think she was so spoiled with all the attention this weekend, that it was a bit of an adjustment to get back to the normal day-to-day. After her nap, this afternoon, this settled a bit and by this evening she was starting to get back to her normal self.

Gracie still didn't have a great appetite today, but we got some healthier food in her and I think that did wonders. She loves apples and peanut butter together and that was her afternoon snack. Her hands were so covered in peanut butter when we were done, it was a gooey mess. I think she quite liked it. Good sensory input for her.

We took Gracie to Silver Lake today to feed the geese. Oh my, speaking of aggressive, those geese don't know when to back off. Gracie quite enjoyed them, but her favorites were the ducks. When we gave her bread to throw at them, she stuck it in her mouth instead. Then we walked around and then we hung out on the swings for the longest time. The swing squeaked something terrible, but I think that was a happy sound for Gracie from a sensory perspective.

Then we came home and had supper and then Gracie and daddy went back outside to play while I chatted on the phone. Gracie was in a great mood this evening and is quite the dancer to the "Hokey Pokey". It was great fun to watch her get into it. When we would stop singing she would tell us "more".

Gracie had a new word today. She went to the gate over the stairs and said "outside". And that is exactly where she wanted to go. She loves it outdoors.

Gracie is now sleeping peacefully. I'm hoping to sleep in again tomorrow. Could I be that lucky?

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Most Beautiful Flowergirl

We've had a very busy week and weekend. My niece and Goddaughter Crystal and her new husband Will got married this weekend in Dubuque, IA. Congratulations to an awesome couple! Gracie had the very special honor of being their flowergirl and I was honored with being a reader at the wedding. My biggest fear was that Gracie would come down with some ailment, as she catches things so easily. Lots of prayers were said...and answered. On Friday morning, we got in the van with our healthy young lady and headed to pick up my parents for a 4 hour road trip to Dubuque. Another fear was that Gracie would act up on the drive as she HATES to ride and now we would have passengers. My mother assured me that she had 7 children, she could handle it. To my surprise Gracie was an angel in the car. She did great and even slept for an hour both ways.

We weren't quite sure if Gracie would walk down the aisle or not. She didn't quite understand the whole concept of a flowergirl. What she did understand is that it was a weekend filled with an awesome family who loves her and treats her like a princess. On Friday night at practice we were still unsure if she would walk up, but we practiced with her. Then we headed to a beautiful setting for the rehearsal supper, a winery set in the hills about 20 miles out of Dubuque. It was a beautiful evening and we were able to eat outside. All of us but Gracie that is. She was so tired that she refused to eat. She wanted NOTHING to do with Jeff or I, and just wanted to have her cousins take turns walking with her everywhere. Her cousins were wonderful to her, even though she was quite demanding in her tiredness. Another highlight of her evening was the winery cat. She was so excited to see him.

On Saturday morning we headed to the hair salon. Gracie had way too much visiting and checking the place out to sit still. When it came time to do her hair, she would not sit for the hairdresser. I quickly decided to have my niece stay with her and I disappeared. That was the magic we needed...she then sat and cooperated quite nicely. Her hair was done beautifully and the hairdresser gets mega points for doing so well with a child who has never even had her hair cut. I was able to watch the process through the magic of mirrors. We headed back to the hotel from there and Gracie took a 30 minute nap on my shoulder (we couldn't take the risk of messing up her hair). Then to the church where she decided she needed to be by the bride and perfect that they were able to snap pictures when she was cooperative. She did get mad at one point and throw her basket of flowers on the floor spilling water and greenery everywhere. Gracie did NOT walk up all by herself as planned, the maid of honor (thank you Julie and Grant) and best man took her up with them. Then when she was supposed to get in the pew with me, she made a break for it and the groom had to remove her from the front of the church and return her to me. This is what memories are made of right?

After the wedding, Gracie got in a nap before the reception. She ate a pretty good supper, which I was relieved at, because there was so much happening this weekend that she was not a very good eater. When the dance began, that is when Gracie was the happiest. She was in her glory dancing to great music. At one point she was the center of attention in the middle of the floor with everyone dancing around her. As someone who has very little rhythm, I'm quite proud that Gracie DEFINITELY has rhythm. All that dancing with daddy has paid off. We finally removed our tired girl from the dance floor at about 10:00 p.m. (way past her bedtime). She would lay her head on my shoulder and I was sure she was falling asleep, then she would hear music, lift her head and start moving her head to the music. She is definitely motivated by music. She slept pretty good.

This morning she slept in til about 7:00 a.m. and then we headed to breakfast and gift opening with the family. She enjoyed taking her cousins for more walks. Thank you to each and every one who took her on walks. She really didn't want much to do with Jeff or I this weekend and could be very demanding when she didn't get her way. I think being overstimulated had a bit to do with this, but other than wanting constant attention, she did great for being out of her routine.

Tonight when we got home after being in the car for so long, she just wanted to play outside. We did so for quite awhile. She was so tired by 8:00 p.m. and is now snoozing peacefully.
Lisa, Jeff, and the most beautiful flowergirl Gracie

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Independence Day Weekend - FUN, FUN, FUN

Gracie had a very busy and fun holiday weekend. On Saturday we all did a little shopping in the morning to get a new grill and a few supplies for the weekend. Then after a 2 hour nap, we let Gracie play in a little hippo pool on the deck. I had picked it up last year and we never got it out. This year it is almost too small for her, but she didn't notice, she had a great time splashing and loved it when you poured water on her. After pool time, she played on the swing and slide for awhile with daddy. Then it was time for a walk around the neighborhood. She was really enjoying being outside. Earlier in the day she had requested a smoothie, so I made good on my promise after our outdoor activities and made a strawberry-banana soy smoothie to cool us all off. Later we got some Chinese take out food. Gracie LOVES Chinese food. I think her favorite are the water chestnuts.

On Sunday, Grandma & Grandpa D., Aunt Kathy, and cousins Calvin, Maria, and Josh came over for a grill out. The rain kept us inside, but we still had fun. With only a half hour nap, it was a good thing fireworks were cancelled as I don't think she would have been able to stay awake. The neighborhood was alive with booms from smaller fireworks and every time Gracie would hear some she would clap. We also took an evening walk and Gracie enjoyed being outside.

On Monday we headed over to Aunt Sheila and Uncle Chris' house to play with cousins Kayla and Jason. There was more yummy food to eat and lots of playing to be done. Kayla treated us to piano music, which Gracie just adores and Jason made her laugh with a great game of chase. We tried to take a few pictures on this day too, but Gracie decided she did not want to stay still long enough for a picture.
It was a very fun weekend and she was one tired girl last night, yet she was wound up and it took her til about 9:30 p.m. to fall asleep. She was a happy girl this morning.
We hope you all had a fun and safe Fourth of July weekend.
Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Monday, July 5, 2010

Having Too Much Fun to Blog

We're having too much fun to find the time to blog this Fourth of July weekend. Updates forthcoming soon.

Hope you are all having a safe holiday weekend.

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Friday, July 2, 2010


Gracie slept through til I awoke her at 6:00 a.m. She was a happy girl this morning. I dressed her in a 4th of July t-shirt with a flag on it (she loves flags) and some cute little jean shorts. She looked so tall.

Jeff dropped Gracie off at daycare this morning and she acted shy for about two seconds and then it was time to play. Gracie made a 4th of July fireworks display picture to bring home. Very cool. She also was quite the expert at the Hokey Pokey. I picked her up at daycare after work, we came home and had coconut milk ice cream laced with seizure med sprinkles, then back into the car where we drove to Culvers to meet up with Grandma & Grandpa D for supper.

Gracie was quite the eater...chicken, hamburger, bun, and french fries. If they had ketchup on them they were much more desirable.

Gracie was very tired tonight, but had a hard time falling asleep. She wanted to play. I told her she had to lay down, which she would for about two seconds, then back up she would go. It finally got to the point that all I would have to do is give her the look and she would lay down. However, she knows how to work mommy, because all of a sudden she leaned over and gave me a kiss with a big sweet smile. Then she signed "more". She loves when I smother her neck with kisses and that is what she was asking for.

She is finally sleeping, but there are some major bottle rocket blasts going off in the neighborhood. I hope they don't wake her.

Happy 4th of July weekend to all of our family and friends.

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie

Thursday, July 1, 2010


Gracie was quite tired this morning and didn't want to wake up. So Jeff and I started singing to her. Of course she loved this. She would lay with her eyes closed, sucking her thumb, listening to us. When we would stop, her eyes would pop open and she would sign "more".

Gracie started a new daycare today and she did very well with this new transition. She was a very busy girl. When I called to check in mid-morning, she was dancing and playing dress up. This afternoon she got to go swimming and I'm told she was a wild splashing girl. No surprise there. All the little girls were sitting outside when Jeff picked her up and she didn't want to go home because she wanted to sit close to the baby.

Gracie was a happy girl when I got home, but was very tired. She fell asleep at 7:30 p.m. and I think she is out for the night. Sweet dreams.

Lisa, Jeff, and Gracie