Saturday, April 28, 2012

Happy Birthday, Juli!

My baby girl is three years old today.  This week, we said good-bye to her special friends of the past 2 years, her awesome therapists who have helped Juli begin to catch up.  It's hard to believe that we are done with Early Intervention.  It has consumed our time and schedule, but it has done so much more than that.  Through Early Intervention we have met several wonderful ladies who have shown our little girl so much love as they experienced her stubbornness, her tantrums, & her refusals to work.  I know I couldn't do their job.

This week we also met Juliana's preschool teacher.  Yes, I said preschool.  Monday morning, Juli starts preschool.  A bus will pick her up at Theresa's house in the morning and take her to preschool, where she will go 5 days a week to continue getting the help that she needs.  Mommy and Daddy are still feeling nervous about our little girl getting on the bus like a big girl, but Juli is excited.  During the school day, Juli will be pulled out for speech, physical, and occupational therapy, and she will also be in a class with other kids which should help her catch up as well.  When we met Juli's preschool teacher, her first words were, "She's so little!  Are you sure she's 3?"  I told her that even I am having a hard time with it. 

Honestly, I didn't ever really think this day would arrive.  Juli's first year of life was so hard on all of us, that it was hard to picture her being done with Early Intervention and moving on.  I remember her first few physical therapy meetings, when she screamed the entire session and I swore Miss Meghan was a saint for not killing her.  I thought the same thing of Miss Suzy when she screamed for no reason during OT, both during a recent session and when she first started (Miss Suzy was also the therapist who helped keep Juli breathing when she had that episode on Noah's 4th birthday).

I am so proud of all she has accomplished.  For the longest time she wouldn't let us hug or kiss her, but this last year, she has become more affectionate with her hugs and kisses.  She finally learned to say "Noah", and now she yells his name all the time.  She also just learned to say "Gamma" and boy was grandma excited to hear it.

She is developing her own opinions and thoughts now.  Her favorite color is purple.  She likes to pick out her own clothes- which leads to very interesting outfits sometimes.  Her favorite movie is "Despicable Me", she loves the minions and Gru in the movie.  She loves the pigs in "Angry Birds".  Her favorite person is "Bubba"- her cousin Brendan who is 6 months younger than her.  She loves to play with baby dolls and Little People.  She loves animals, especially dogs and kitties.  She has a kind heart.  When Noah is crying she always gives him a hug and kiss, or if he is in time out, she will sit next to him on the step.

Happy birthday, sweet girl!  You're growing up so quickly!

Juli & her Bubba

Saturday, April 21, 2012

One Week...

One week from today, my baby girl will be 3 years old.  Wow.  Time seems to be going by so quickly now.  This coming week will be her last week in Early Intervention.  After this week, our life will no longer be as scheduled as it has been.  No more physical therapy.  No more occupational therapy.  We are going to continue to do speech therapy because that is Juli's biggest delay.  I am trying to imagine life without those therapies in it, and I can honestly not remember what life was like before we had PT, OT, and speech therapy in it.  It is weird to even think about it.  What is even harder to picture, is that the Monday after Juli turns 3, she will get on a bus and go to preschool 5 days a week where she will continue to receive those same therapies at school, but will now be in a class with other kids.  I am thankful that she qualified for Early Childhood, and I know it will be good for her and help her to catch up. 

What makes me sad is that now we have to say good-bye to Juli's therapists.  They have become such a big part of our lives for the past 2 years and have helped us out in so many ways.  Thank you just doesn't seem enough.  At the beginning of our journey into Early Intervention, I had been nervous and scared, but this was the best thing that we could have done for Juliana and she had amazing therapists throughout our journey.  It will be hard to say good-bye to Juli's special friends, but it's part of growing up.  It's going to be a hard week for me, I think.  Where has the time gone?

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Chuck Taylor...

Anyone who knows me fairly well, knows that I hate to dress up.  If I could wear sweatpants and a hoodie everyday to work, I would.  I know, I should have been a gym teacher instead of a science teacher, and then I could dress that way.  Oh well.  My way of getting around the "professional dress", is to wear Converse High Top sneakers, or as my students refer to them, Chucks.  I got my first pair when I was a freshman in high school- they are blue flannel, and I still have them to this day.  As the years have passed, I have added to my collection of Chuck Taylors.  I have purple, green, blue, zebra striped, flower pattern, a bright orange and pink pair, you get the picture.  I am always browsing their site to see what they have added.  They now even let you customize your own Chucks.  I already have a pair in the works that I've customized for Juliana for whenever she's done wearing her ankle braces- and believe me, they are cute!

Over the past couple years, they have been adding Dr. Seuss into their collection.  When the movie, "The Lorax" came out, they came out with a couple versions of "Lorax" Chucks.  I, of course, fell in love with them immediately.  Not because I'm a tree hugger, we do recycle at our house and try to be environmentally friendly for the most part, but because they were really cool looking.  For my birthday, my mom and dad gave me money so that I could indulge myself and buy them.

What do you think?  Aren't they cool?  They were a huge hit on Friday with my students and my teacher friends.  Thanks Mom and Dad :-)

Friday, April 6, 2012

A 5 Year Olds Thoughts On Good Friday...

This morning, Noah and Juliana were playing in the other room.  I was watching this video:

All of a sudden, I heard, "Is that Jesus?  They hurted him bad, Momma."  I stopped the video and turned around.  There behind me watching was Noah.  We had been reading to him about Jesus' death and resurrection every Easter since he was two years old.  He asked if he could see the rest of the video.  I said no, because it was too violent.  He kept asking over and over.  I finally said okay, as long as you cover your eyes when I tell you too (some of the scenes from the Passion of the Christ are hard for even me to watch).  He obeyed me and we watched the video and talked about the words in the song and he covered his eyes when I told him to.

At the end, he asked, "Why were the people crying?  Don't they know the rest of the story?  Jesus is going to come back to life in 3 days!"  He may not understand how horrible the crucifixion was, but at least he understands most of the story.