Sunday, November 29, 2009

Thankful A to Z ~T,U,V,W,X,Y,Z~

Trisomy 21 I am thankful for the new world trisomy 21 has opened to my family. We have learned so much in just over a year. Even though I have worked with individuals who were born with Down syndrome I did not have a clue. Heck, I always called Down syndrome Down’s until my eyes were opened early into Gabriel’s diagnosis.
Understanding I am thankful for others who understand the craziness that has been my life for the past year. You have all read the blog though Gabriel’s surgery in February, Gabe’s surgeries in July and August, and our pregnancy with Isabella. I am thankful that if I am out to lunch you understand. Through it all, I would not change a thing!
Very special husband I am beyond thankful for Gabe. He is amazing. He is great at calming me down when my emotions get the best of me. He is the calmness in my storm often. He has been amazing though everything we have been through this past year.
Work I am thankful that though everything our jobs have been extremely supportive. I am thankful that we have jobs. It is hard leaving Gabriel each morning but I know that he will get to spend his morning with Mimi and Papa and his afternoon with Gabe until I come home from work. It is difficult not getting to see much of Gabe with him on midnights but again it is great knowing that he is able to spend the afternoon with Gabriel.
eXtremely happy Gabriel I am thankful for my extremely happy Gabriel. There is nothing better than waking up in the morning to a giggling baby!
Yogurt I am thankful for yogurt because Gabriel and I get to have yogurt each night. He gets baby yogurt and I get mommy yogurt. Yummy! I love special Gabriel and Mommy time!
Zero I am thankful that I have zero regrets on my life today. I am happy with who I am. I am happy with my amazing husband. I am happy with my cheerful son. I am happy with my ever growing Isabella. I am happy with my family and friends. Everyone being in my life shows me how special I am. I am thankful for all of you each and every day!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Thankful A to Z ~S~

Siblings I am thankful for siblings. I was blessed with amazing siblings. My little brother and I are best friends. I love my little sister with all of my heart. I hope my children realize how lucky they are to be siblings. Gabriel and Isabella will be close in age just like Nick and I.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Thankful A to Z ~P,Q,R~

Purdy I am thankful to be a Purdy. Gabe was the youngest Purdy until our little Gabriel came. I love having such a fun last name. My students get a kick out of it ;)

Quality time I am thankful for my quality time with my family. Everyone should be as lucky to have such an amazing family. I love my family! Gabe is one of the most caring and compassionate people I know. Gabriel is so loving and happy, who wouldn't love him. I cant wait until Isabella joins our family. She will be the spice in the mix. ;)

Relatives I am so very thankful for our relatives. Mimi and Papa step up to the plate each morning to watch Gabriel until Gabe is out of work. They even watch Gabriel while Gabe gets a little sleep. Grandma and Grandpa help us when we need a little respite. Aunt Brett helps put Gabriel to sleep when we are visiting Grandma and Grandpa. Great Aunt Billi is always a call away. She has also been able to help us with so many things. Great Grandma is amazing. I wish we got to see her more! I cant wait until thanksgiving to get to see her! Uncle Nick may be in Denver but he is always with us in spirit! Aunt Andrea and Uncle Anthony are always here for us. With four little ones of their own we do not get to see them that often. We have an amazing family and support group!

Friday, November 20, 2009

bigger and bigger

Lots of things to catch up on:

Gabriel is getting bigger and bigger each day. He is taking steps on his own now. I am happy that he is too afraid right now to take too many on his own. He is off as long as he has mama's or dada's finger to hold onto.

Gabriel is eating more and more every day. We are hoping to get him eating 'real' food shortly. He is still on 1st and 2nds. he does not like chunks in his food. We are slowly thickening his food in hope to get him switched over.

Gabriel is starting to crawl. He has been happy doing his army crawl up until this point. He is VERY fast at the army crawl.

Gabriel believes that the word NO means that he should just do whatever he wants to as long as he doesn't think you are looking. For example: he knows that he is not to be standing up at his Mimi's table. (He likes to clear it off for her). Any time he sees that her back is turned he is right there up at her table. What a little stinker.

Grandpa had shoulder surgery yesterday. He is at home doing good. It is close to the same surgery that Gabe will be having on March 5th. Yes, you read that right. Gabe is having surgery three weeks after Isabella's due date. But, that is the only time I have coming up that I will be able to take care of him. WOW, I will have three kids soon, two little ones and a big one.

Gabriel has yet to pop a tooth out. His gums will get white in spots and he gets grouchy but still no teeth. That is okay because he likes to bite. I am trying to break him of that BEFORE he has teeth.

Gabriel's vocabulary is getting larger and larger. He of course says mama and dada. He has emo (elmo) down. He will mimic a lot of things that we say. So cute!

I need to go back to work :)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Thankful A to Z ~O~

Occupational Therapy I am thankful that Michigan is so good with their children with special needs. Gabriel had all of his therapies set up by the time he got home from the hospital after being born. Of course he spent his first 18 days in the hospital. Early On is an amazing program. We all know that early intervention is very important. Michigan is there to support our children from birth to 25 years old. I hope the funding stays in place to keep the programs!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Thankful A to Z ~N~

Naughty Boys I am thankful for my naughty boys. Gabe and Gabriel are my most favorite boys ever. They share secrets and wont let me in. Gabriel is completely a daddy's boy. It is okay most of the time because they are so darn cute together. They are always playing games. No mama's allowed of course. Just watching melts my heart! I have the best husband and son ever!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Thankful A to Z ~M~

Mom I am thankful for the best word ever! Today I got home after a long day of work to be greeted by Gabe with Gabriel in his arms. Gabriel got a HUGE smile on his face and said "MOM" then raised his hands to be picked up. My heart melted!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Thankful A to Z ~L~

Love I am thankful for all of the love we have. Love for our little family, Love for and from our extended family, love from friends... Our world is full of love.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Thankful A to Z ~I , J, K~

Ice Cream I am SO, SO thankful for ice cream. Where would the world be without the special powers of ice cream? In high school I ran for ice cream, now I waddle to the fridge for ice cream. I can’t wait for Gabriel to enjoy ice cream as much as I do. I know Isabella LOVES her ice cream, she asks for it ALL of the time! Right now he isn’t too sure about it. Give him some time.
Joy I am thankful for all of the joy I have in my life. I am reminded how lucky I am each morning when I am greeted with a Gabriel smile. I am reminded each evening when I get my good night kiss from Gabe as he heads to work. Through every trial and tribulation my family is able to bring joy into the situation.
Kisses I am thankful for my kisses! Gabriel and Gabe shower me with kisses. I LOVE MY KISSES! I will be excited when Gabriel learns that he is not a puppy and he does not need to lick me in order to give me a kiss.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Thankful A to Z ~H~

Hospitals I am thankful for all of the hospitals that Gabriel has been admitted to. He was born at Hackley Hospital in Muskegon. They did an amazing job with him for the 4 days he spent there before being transferred to Devos Children's Hospital in Grand Rapids. The hospital staff and doctors were so helpful at Devos. They were able to diagnose what was wrong and have a plan of treatment. We also had a great experience with the doctors and staff at Devos when Gabriel was admitted there for a week in April . Mott Children's Hospital was amazing when we were there for Gabriel's surgery. With out these amazing hospitals and their amazing staff we would not be where we are today!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Thankful A to Z ~G~

Gabriel I am so thankful for Gabriel. He is an amazing little man. He has surprises for us each and every day. He is almost walking on his own. He has learned to wave goodbye to me each morning when I drop him off at Mimi and Papa's. He is a breath of fresh air each morning and each evening when I get home from work. His smile breaks hearts already.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Thankful A to Z ~F~

Friends and Family I am so thankful for our friends and family. With out each and every one of you we would be lost. THANK YOU for being there for us. We have cherished having you each and every step of the way. Words can not express how much you all mean to us. Gabriel is the luckiest young man in the world. He has so many people backing him up, so many people ready and willing to assist our little family whenever we need it. THANK YOU!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Thankful A to Z ~E~

Education I am thankful for free and appropriate education in the least restrictive environment. Every child has the right to be educated no matter what. I went to Western to major in Education because of my deep belief that every child has the right to learn and that not every child learns the same way. I am glad that our government is now supporting education for students with disabilities and has created legislation accordingly. IDEA '97 really opened the door for students with disabilities by allowing for children with disabilities to have the same free and appropriate education as everyone in the least restrictive environment. Having a mixture of students in the classroom teaches all children that there are people in this world who are different but that different does not mean bad.

If you would like to know more about IDEA and its amendments please feel free to check out these websites.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

beautiful day

Even sick Gabriel had a smile on his face. Poor babies nose was trying to run off his face.
The weather was amazing today! We decided to put Gabriel in the leaves. He hates them, he won't put his hands down. I decided to dress him in his Halloween costume (it has gloves) to see if he liked that better. Here is the result.
Even though the Vikings are not playing this weekend we had to dress in Viking spirit!

Thankful A to Z ~D~

Doctors I am thankful for the many doctors who have crossed our paths. Without Dr. Bove (Gabriel's heart surgeon) Gabriel's life would have been cut short. Now he has a healthy and strong heart. We have yet to have a doctor who sees Gabriel as a Down syndrome boy*. They all see Gabriel as a boy who happens to have Down syndrome. This is a very important difference.

* For those who don't know:
People with disabilities are ~ first and foremost, people ~ people who have individual abilities, interests and needs. For the most part, they are ordinary individuals seeking to live ordinary lives. People with disabilities are moms, dads, sons, daughters, sisters, brothers, friends, neighbors, coworkers, students and teachers. About 54 million Americans ~ one out of every five individuals ~ have a disability. Their contributions enrich our communities and society as they live, work and share their lives.

That being said we use person first language when referring to everyone. Gabriel is not a Down syndrome boy. He is a boy with Down syndrome. This note is not referring to anyone in particular, it is just making everyone aware.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Thankful A to Z ~C~

Cats I am thankful for our cats. Many of you have seen Gabriel's relationship with BigFoot. Biggie and Gabriel are best friends. Even though Kitten is the owner of the house, she allows Gabriel to run the living room. Of course when Gabriel is not in the living room she makes sure everyone knows she really owns it. I was worried about how the cats would receive Gabriel but they have allowed him in our home without any trouble.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Thankful A to Z ~B~

BoogaBoo I am thankful for Gabriel's nickname BoogaBoo (Booga). Gabriel's Daddy gave him this nickname. He will most likely not know that his name is Gabriel. In fact, when Gabe calls Gabriel by his real name, Gabriel has no idea he is being called. It is a sign of the special bond between daddy and son!

Gabriel is feeling better today. He was up almost all night last night but has slept the day away. His temperature hit a high of 101.5 last night but he has been down to 99.4 most of the day today.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

There is a bright side!

Sunday the 25th I wrote about how I was thinking Gabriel had an ear infection. Well, he went to the pediatrician on that Monday. He said that he did not think that Gabriel has an ear infection but he was not sure because Gabriel's ear canals are very small.

Fast forward to last night. Around 6pm it was undeniable that Gabriel was sick. He could not breath through his nose and he threw up which is VERY rare for him. He did not sleep worth beans last night because he could barely breath. I suctioned his nose several times (his least favorite thing ever). He threw up 3 more times last night. Poor kid felt so miserable. I was ready to take him to the ER but he was not running a fever so we waited. He did not sleep a whole hour all night.

This morning he was feeling somewhat better but still VERY stuffed up. I took the day off work because I am still recovering and the lack of sleep was just too much, plus I did not want to leave my baby. We finally got an appointment at 1pm. Waiting stinks when you are watching your little one struggle to breath because his nose is so stuffed.

We get to the pediatricians office and wait forever... like always. Gabriel was playing around giggling and laughing but it was obvious that he was very stuffed up (thank goodness, I hate it when you go to the doctor and your little one no longer has symptoms). My goodness but the doctor says that Gabriel has ear infections in both ears. Um, yes, I told him this a week ago. He also has a very red throat and his sinus's are plugged. There is nothing that can be done for how stuffed Gabriel is. He is on antibiotics for his infections. Hoepfully this takes care of the problems.

As I am writing this Gabriel is sitting in my lap. He feels very warm. He has not been running a fever though this. I lie, he is now at a 100.9. Goodness!

I took tomorrow off to take care of my little one and to get better myself.

Oh ya, due to budget cut backs our health department is only open Monday, Wednesday and Fridays. I hope I can get through tomorrow to find out what they have to say about the lead. Goodness, sometimes we cant seem to get ahead!

On the bright side I am going to do something fun for the month of November. A friend gave me this amazing idea. Cathy runs a blog about her daughter Lily who is too cute for words ( For the month of November we are going to post something everyday that we are thankful for. And to make it extra fun we are going to post in alphabetical order.

Atrioventricular Septal Defect (AVSD) I am thankful that Gabriel's heart surgery for his AVSD is over an that things are looking very good for him. We are off medication for his heart as of Wednesday! I am thankful that we went thought the heart surgery process and came out of it stronger!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Some pics

Getting ready to go trick-or-treating with Aunt Brett and Grandpa.
Chilling with some family friends
Gabriel's new chair
Such a BIG BOY!

Monday, November 2, 2009

no news is good news

Why can't we stick with the no news?!

Gabriel's pediatrician personally called me tonight. As soon as I heard his voice I knew we were in for some bad news. Gabriel has lead in his blood. The use a scale of 1-10 to rate how much blood is in a child's system. 1 is a very little bit and 10 is hospital, it is being worked on where a 5 is an emergency stage of lead in the blood. Gabriel has a level 3 in his system right now.

We are to call the county health department tomorrow to see what their suggestion is. We have to test our house and my in-laws house to see if there is lead in the house itself. We also have to test EVERY toy. Should be interesting.

We need to remove everything with lead and Gabriel will be retested in 6 months. I hoping we find the main cause of his high levels very quickly.

In the mean time, I have been down with a sinus infection. I was put on antibiotics on Saturday. They should be kicking in by now, right?! I am so tired on top of feeling like poo... Oh well, a little time and all will be good. I took today and tomorrow off of work to try to get on top of my game instead of going back too soon and getting sicker.