Thursday, August 26, 2010

Praying for a Job!

Would you join us in praying for a job for Rachael? We are really hoping to find a tutoring, babysitting, or part-time job to bring a little more income for our family. She has been subbing since last year & has actually been called in already! That is a praise! We are praying for something more scheduled so we can count on it as a monthly income. We are praying that this will be something that can be done from home, uses her talents & abilities with teaching & that would not require too much time from our family! Pray for His direction!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Hitting the 15 lb. mark at 14 months!

We are so thrilled to report that Leona has had her biggest weight gain month EVER! I am sure you could tell from my last posting that I was pretty frustrated by everything! The Lord is so good! He doesn't always give us positive situations to deal with in life, but He is ALWAYS GOOD!

I took Leona to get her weight checked & the scale said 15# 12oz. I had to think back to her appt with the specialist. I was thinking she was 14# 10oz, but that couldn't be right...over a # in one month!??!?! When I got home I checked the dr. sheet from Riley' was 14# 5oz.!!!!! I couldn't believe it! That's 1# 7 oz! I was SHOCKED! She hasn't gained over a few onces a month since like 10 mos.!!

What helped? She was switched from her 25 calories per oz. formula to a 30 calories per oz. Pediasure equivalent only with soy, called Bright Beginnings. She has also had a fat supplement called Duocal! It seems to boost her drive to eat, plus adds a lot of calories per day to her diet. These changes, plus lots of bologna, grapes & green beans!!

Our 14 mos. old is all over the place. She is learning to pick up her bath toys so Mommy can put them away & how to put her dirty clothes in the laundry. She is still working on the "Bring it to Mommy" or "Bring it to Daddy" when she has something she wants to play with!

I am really working on my tone with her. It is so easy for us to raise our voice to get obedience! She likes to test the waters; she has since a very young age, so it is sometimes difficult to keep a quiet, firm tone! LORD change me!

These are some pictures of our trip to St. Joseph Michigan!

Here is Leona playing in the back yard!

Thanks for keeping up-to-date with us!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Crabby Child at the Hospital

Today Leona went in for a swallow study at Memorial Hospital of South Bend. The pediatric specialist wanted to check & make sure she wasn't having any intake issues that were causing her small stature.

A Swallow Study is basicly a moving x-ray that shows the movement of food as it is being swallowed. They check to make sure that it is not going into the airways instead.

Leona could not eat 2 hours prior to her test. Of course she did not want to eat upon waking up this morning, when she was allowed to. She drank about 1 oz. & decided she was done. When we arrived at the Radiology department, they said it would only be a few minutes... I should have known hospital time a little better than that! Of course we waited about 30 min. because the therapist had not even shown up yet! At least it wasn't the 2 hour wait that we waited for the MRI at EGH.

After waiting that long to eat, she was not very pleasant; not to mention nap time was too close for comfort.


She screamed most of the time! They had to put a liquid on the food for her to eat so it would show on the x-ray. She did not like it! If she saw the white stuff on her food, she refused it. Ben had to sit in the chair for her to stay even remotely calm! It took over an hour for about 60 sec. of recording.

The therapist asked a lot of questions! She noticed that Leona does not chew her food, but mainly swallows things whole. She asked about her eating habits & suggested maybe she has sensory issues with textures. She also said that we should not feel bad for her still being on the bottle & not moving toward all cup because her biological age & her eating/weight age are not the same. The focus needs to be on her gaining weight. Of course all of these comments are based on this crabby child she saw for about an hour.

After all the trauma, both Ben & I were feeling some frustration. She passed the test, but what now?


We talked through the possiblity of her having texture issues & we wonder if this is even a possibility. We have had this brought up by several friends prior to all of this. She loves feeling things. She doesn't mind getting messy. She eats foods with a lot of texture like hamburger meat, grapes & broccoli. She used to eat more pureed foods like baby food, but as soon as she had finger foods, she didn't want anything I fed her. She will refuse foods she doesn't want & there is no forcing her either. Anything sweet is pretty much out too! So is that a texture issue or merely a picky, stubborn child? We think it is the later b/c she is a strong willed child. Right now as I write this she is in her highchair playing in soy yogurt, eating grapes, hamburger & deli ham while watching Baby Signing Time!

Before Ben left for work, he gave me a long hug as I cried a little. Sometimes I am just so tired of all the doctor appt's, struggles of getting her to eat, & the wondering what to do! Ben assured me that she is normal, just small. I continue to be on the other side of something is wrong, just what?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Vacation in Ohio

We just got back from 1 1/2 weeks of vacation with the Strickland family. We were so blessed in renting a pastor's lake house on Lake Seneca. It is a private lake, about 1 1/2 hours from Elkhart. It was very quiet & peaceful. We actually found out later that we knew the pastor's neice & nephew-in-law (if that's a word :) from our church & ECA (Rach's former employer).

The best day of the whole week was Sunday afternoon. The Thigpen's, Strickland's & Highlander's from Norwalk, Ohio joined us for our own church service. Ethan, Ben's brother, played some powerful worship songs for us all to sing together. All of the men shared some significant passages that they had been studying. We are so blessed. Ben's Mom also shared a psalm that she had been memorizing. It was a great reminder of God's grace & the joy of being a part of such a godly family. The time together was so sweet. As I looked around the whole group I realized how many things we have all faced over the past few years. There is always something God is doing to work on this family.

"Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial, for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life, which the Lord has promised to those who love Him." James 1:12

Leona loved being with family. She loved eating breakfast with Gma & Gpa, while Mommy slept in!! She loves the water, too! She loves splashing & kicking her legs. She also discovered playing in the sand. Anytime we have been to Lake Michigan the sand has been too hot for her to play in, so she loved getting dirty & filling the frisbee up with sand & dumping it on her head!

At the end of our trip we traveled to Cedarville, Ohio to see Ben's Grandpa Jindra (his Mom's Dad), Aunt Nancy & cousin Christina. We were also able to visit the gravesites of Ben's 2 uncles (Tim passed away in 2006; Danny in 2010) & his Grandma Jindra (died in 1993). It was short, but good to see family that we don't get to see very often!