Friday, April 18, 2014

Life as we know it right now

I feel like it's been forever since I've taken the time to open my laptop, let alone sit down and write a blog post.

Aside from a few pictures posted to facebook from my iphone, our family has seemed to have fallen off the grid of cyber space.

This was only partly intentional, I've been really surprised at how easy it has been for me to cut facebook and the internet out of my daily routine.

Truth be told though, I just don't have a lot of extra room in my life for all of the mind clutter that often comes with facebook, pinterest, and all the other things that I can so easily get distracted by on the internet.

As much as I LOVE blogging, God has been making it clear that this season of life that we're in right now has got to be focused on "us".

I know this season will pass and hopefully I'll be able to get back into writing and blogging, but right now, writing is taking a back burner to actual "living".

Soooooo what does life look like for us right now??

It's very focused.

Very centered on family and on the things that are going to benefit our family in the long run.

This past fall, Ryan and I spent countless hours praying, researching, and continually searching the internet for any houses for sale that may be able to meet the needs of our family.

We decided that building a home would be our best option so we started talking to builders and planned on beginning the process this Spring.

Then one random day Ryan and I both felt God's consuming peace about staying in our apartment for another year. It seemed God was saying if we did choose to build, He would be faithful to see us through, but that there is an even bigger blessing for us if we wait on His timing.

I tell you all of this so you can all have a better understanding of the season we're in right now.

It's a hard season... We're trying to make life work for us in a small two bedroom apartment on the third floor with no elevator all while working like crazy to prepare to either buy or build a house next year.


For me to take my children on a walk it requires me strapping Landon onto my back, putting Ivan into his umbrella stroller, and carrying him in his stroller down three flights of stairs.

But somehow God gives me the strength (physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual) everyday. Of course there are days when I don't cling to the Lords strength, those days are not pretty, but even on my worst days God is so faithful.

Ryan and I would not trade this life for anything.

Even in this extremely busy, crazy, season of life we are continually blown away by the joy we receive from the two little miracles that demand absolutely everything of us.

Big News!!!

 A new job

Last month I began working at the local Dunn brothers. What I thought would be such a hard change and sacrifice for our family is proving to be a huge blessing. It has been really good for me to get out of the house a couple nights a week, Ryan is enjoying the extra one on one time with the boys he gets at bedtimes, and obviously the added income has been extremely nice as well, as we're saving every extra penny for a future down payment.

A TWO year old!!

A couple weeks ago we celebrated our baby turning a year older!!

How did this tiny, fragile baby...


Turn into this strong, confident, stubborn little boy...

It happened in the blink of an eye, let me tell you.

Even though it's hard for this mama to process the fact that my baby is growing up, I wouldn't trade the ride for anything. 

Everyone who knows Landon is just amazed that so much personality can reside in one little boy. 

He is hilarious and oh SO sweet!

He is obsessed with planes, cars, and trains. I can't get him to sit still long enough to eat more than a couple bites of food. He NEVER stops going (unless there's a movie on). He's my little book worm. He has started saying "I love you" and it melts my heart into a puddle every time. He tries to climb everything. He has a serious sweet tooth. He has started potty training and is doing really well. He's a milk addict and will go through withdrawals if he doesn't have a fix every couple hours (it's an issue we're working on :). He is still an awesome sleeper (bedtime at 6:30 wakes up at 7:30). He does the funniest things with his eyes and even has the teenager eye roll down already. He keeps us on our toes, but also keeps a smile on our faces.

Oh how I LOVE this boy.

Happy birthday love bug!! I can't wait to see what this year holds for you and continue to watch you grow into such an amazing little boy.

5 Months Home!!

A couple weeks ago also marked 5 months home for our precious Ivan!!!

It's so hard for me to believe that next month we'll be half way to a year, although now we can't remember what life was like without our little man.

Ivan continues to learn and excel in every area. He also seems to have had a small growth spurt as his 3T clothes have now been passed directly down to Landon (who can already wear them!).

All of his therapies continue to go really well. He'll be getting a new OT next week as his prior one is moving away :( All of his therapists have become like family so it'll be an adjustment to say good bye to one and get to know another.

We are still waiting on a couple things to fall into place before we can get him the wheel chair he so desperately needs, but it wont be long now. Next Thurs. someone will be coming over to evaluate him and talk to me and his PT about what kind of chair would be best for him.

To get Ivan onto Medicaid we had to agree to do respite care for him. At first I was frustrated by this. I didn't want yet another person coming into our home for a couple hours everyday and throwing off our routine. It's already hard enough for me to fit in school work with all the therapies, appointments, and all the stretching and other homework that I have to do with him.

But after talking with the program coordinator of the organization we've chosen I know that this is going to be a blessing for our whole family. Just like with all our therapists, it will take time to get to know a care giver, but I need to humble myself and accept that an extra pair of hands, a couple hours, 3 days a week will be really helpful. Ryan and I are also looking forward to down the road when the person we choose could stay with our kiddos so we can have some time with each other.

June 5th is quickly approaching!! Soon we will be back at Gillettes Childrens Hospital for Ivan's spinal and brain MRI. While he is under sedation for the MRI they are also going to do a Botox injection in his thigh that should help significantly with his tone (tightness of muscles). They will also begin his casting while we are down there. It's our understanding that these casts will cover his legs from just under his knee's down. The casts will have to be changed every couple weeks as his body adjusts to them, but we'll be able to do the rest of the casting at home (thank you Lord!). Our PT has told us that these casts will be very uncomfortable for Ivan as they will work similar to braces. We have been told that they shouldn't limit his ability to crawl and get around though so that is good. We don't know how long he'll need to have them, but we're expecting it will likely be months.

Our little man has a long summer ahead of him. We know it's going to be full of change and adjustment for him, but we're excited to be taking these steps that are going to benefit him so much in the future.

Ivan is now able to sit for long periods of time with no support. The other day I went into the boys' room and found him trying to pull himself up into their rocking chair so he could play with the toy kitchen. I helped him up into it and was amazed at how confidently he sat unassisted and played for close to an hour. Just a couple months ago I took a video of him sitting in that same exact chair and playing with the kitchen. We had to prop him up with pillows on every side. Because he wasn't used to supporting himself in such a position he would have sudden muscle spasms that would cause his whole body to tighten up in fear.

The other day there was no sign of fear. Just a confident little boy, happily playing in his room all by himself :D

Washing dishes

Look at that reaching!!

I cannot believe how far this little man has come in only 5 short months and I can't imagine where he will be in 5 more months!!

Ivan Abraham 5 months HOME!!

 Photo dump

early morning birthday celebration before leaving to go visit the grandparents.

PT session: sometimes the PT has Landon come join the fun. Today they were playing with bubbles while sitting unsupported.

Playing outside on one of our few nice days this Spring.
windy Sunday afternoon at the park

Loves swinging with daddy
Love this one :)
Landon came running to the other side, fully expecting to see a flight of stairs. He was so confused haha
Lest you think our kids are always happy, Ryan made me take a picture of the aftermath of our afternoon at the park. Neither of them wanted to leave in spite of being cold, sleepy, and hungry... yep this is real life ;)

So there you have it friends, life as we know it right now. 

If beautiful and hard were holding hands and walking in unison that would be our life right now. I can't explain it, but despite the trials, challenges, and unknowns, we wouldn't change a thing... 

The beauty is in the journey. It's in the changing season's and the daily redemption that gets labeled as mundane.

It isn't until I take a moment to stop and look at where we were 5 months ago (or even 2 months ago) that I realize we aren't at the same place. We're growing and changing and as we do we grow into a stronger and closer family.

As always, thank you for following our journey.

To God be all the glory!!!