Successful Day of Therapies

Today I took Liam to speech therapy and occupational therapy. We go every week and he spends an hour with each teacher back-to-back. Last week he had a hard time focusing for 2 hours straight, most likely from just being away due to the holidays. Today he was much more focused and really showed off his skills! We have speech the first hour and he impressed Ms. Molly with all of his sign language. She read a few books with him and he would point to something on the page and then do the sign. He has been doing that for a while now but just recently his signing vocabulary has really taken off! He seems to be so proud of himself because he smiles every single time he does a sign or imitates Ms. Molly. It’s too cute! He REALLY loves books and could sit and read them all day long!

Within the last week he has begun to imitate many different sounds which is very exciting for me! For example, I was reading a book to him yesterday that had a picture of a snake on a page and I said, “Liam, look at the sssssssnake”. And he went, “ssssss” right back to me with a smile on his face of course. He also says “ba” when I ask him what a sheep says, “ooo” for a cow, and “ufff” for woof. Those are just a few of the sounds he is confident in. The speech therapist told me about a helpful resource for children with Down syndrome entitled, See and Learn Language and Reading. She also sent me to the website Up For Reading for helpful tips on teaching children with Down syndrome to learn to read at an early age. I am going to try and get the starter kit from the See and Learn site and start that with Liam! Karis will benefit as well!

Oh and just for the record… he did well for the most part at OT today! He is pushing and pulling all the things she gave him to do and is really starting to master a particular puzzle with animals and their sounds! But that is another blog altogether.

I’m very grateful for the many resources we have and all the wonderful therapists we have access to! I really enjoy the challenge of learning how to best work with Liam. What a gift he is!

Karis – 10 Months

Here is a cute video of my little 10 month old baby girl eating her lunch. She is never quiet when she eats. It’s pretty funny! As long as she is hungry she is a pretty good eater. Otherwise she becomes very picky and won’t let me come close to her mouth. That’s a good thing I guess considering she is a good size. 😉 And it’s amazing that she just naturally brings food to her mouth and I didn’t have to got through hours of training to make her do that. Crazy! I love her!

Back at it!!

Hey everyone! As my kids are getting older I am getting more sleep and feeling more energy for carving out time to write so stay tuned! If you stopped by from the Monday’s Mom post thank you for reading. Here is just a cute recent picture of my kiddos.

Photos From Karis’ 2nd Day of Life

We had the privilege of having our good friend Sara Harper come over to the hospital tonight and photograph Liam’s introduction to his baby sister. Click on the image below to see a slideshow of the very first family pictures we have (Erin’s parents were also in the room with us so we have some beautiful shots of Karis with her grandparents too). The slideshow will open in a new window. Enjoy – and thank-you Sara!

Liam cracking up!

Liam is starting to recognize when we say “where is your head?” or “where is your tongue?”. He can find mommy and daddy’s nose but not his own quite yet. He also gets a kick out of us imitating him, so that’s what I’m doing on the other side of the camera. It’s too fun!! Also I’m still trying to figure out how to work our new camera so it’s a bit fuzzy.

Ten years later… an answer to prayer!

Wow, it still seems so surreal! Downhere officially owns a bus! What a huge blessing, huh?! They have played together for ten years traveling North America in a van and trailer. The van they currently have is #3 and has 250,000 miles on it – it’s on its last leg. God has continued to provide for these guys over the years with tour dates, a great record label, songs that seem to touch the hearts and lives of people all over the world, an incredible bunch of fans, various awards, friends for life, and now a means of transportation that will provide many benefits to this crazy life.

Here are a few perks of now owning a bus… from my perspective:

  • A big plus is the possibility for more family time. Meaning, when it’s convenient for all we will be able to join Jeremy on short trips here and there. Liam is a good traveler so I’m praying this little girl will fit right in too;).
  • Jeremy will potentially be home a bit more. Now that they have the luxury of being able to sleep in a bunk and take turns driving through the night, they will be able to leave later and return home sooner. We really treasure the time when Jeremy is home so this is a very nice perk!!
  • It’s a much safer way to travel. Thanks to those of you who constantly pray for safety on the road! It’s amazing they have been so protected over the years considering the amount of miles they’ve driven and the type of vehicle they’ve traveled in.
  • And of course the obvious comfort level! The guys figured they spend 3 months out of the year living out of the van. That’s a long time to be stuck in a smelly van that feels every single bump in the road… I know because I traveled with them for 3 years sharing a bench with my honey… now that’s true love;)!

So I cannot express my gratitude enough, as a wife of a traveling rock star, to those of you who have given to their bus fund. Needless to say, God is faithful and through your giving efforts has continued to reassure them and pave the way for them to reach others for his Kingdom through the gift of music. This crazy life is definitely a calling… and the Lord continues to call them back to the road and back to the studio, and all the while families are growing and there are more mouths to feed. And God is faithful. I am overwhelmed and in awe – and yet not completely surprised because the God we serve is more than I can fathom and loves to bless His children in ways we can’t imagine. Honestly, in a way I am a bit sad too, because it means they will STILL be traveling and not coming off the road. Like I said, it’s a calling, and one the wives need to be called too as well. The fact that it’s a calling doesn’t make it easy by ANY means – in fact it’s quite the sacrifice if I do say so myself! But whoever said surrendering your will to the Creator would be a smooth ride (hopefully it’s about to get smoother, pun intended!).

Here are some pictures we took while Jeremy walked Liam and I through the bus for the first time!

We put Liam in Jeremy’s bunk… he didn’t like it too much. Guess it’ll take some getting used to;).

It has 12 bunks, a front lounge and a back lounge.

My 2 rock stars;)!

Oh, and here’s a fun fact about the bus… it used to belong to a hockey team;). Perfect for a few Canadian boys, eh!

Liam is Crawling!

Ok so here is the video. Liam has been crawling like this for a week now. Jeremy had just finished bouncing Liam on his lap… which is his favorite thing, and proceeded to set him down on the floor which he wasn’t too happy about. So that’s why he’s so expressive in the beginning of the video – he wanted to keep bouncing;). Then he gets his eye on the stick and crawls to it. We are so proud!! He’s actually crawling to many different toys today which he hasn’t done yet, so I think he’s about to be all over the place! Our physical therapist said she’s happy with the way he is learning to crawl in that he has seemed to skipped the army crawl stage, and the crawling on his hands and feet stage. It’s lots of fun to watch!