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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Bathtime Orders...

Joshua is becoming quite the character. He has learned to love his baths. He would stay in the tub all day if I let him. If you even mention the word his face lights up. It's really very cute. Anyway, one of his words right now is "down". So he comes over to me today, orders me to get "down," walks me to the bathroom and points to the bathtub. Talk about asking for what you want! As I type this out I am realizing what great progress he is making in certain developmental areas. He is still very much behind, but that only makes us cherish these simple, little things that are so easy to take for granted! He will make it. God is good to him!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Helping himself...

Well, we have a Mr. Independent on our hands. Joshua loves the Disney Car's movie. He also loves to say water, only his pronunciation of the word sounds more like, "bla". In efforts to get him to drink enough fluids (hasn't been working out like we had hoped) we bought him a Lightning McQueen cup, which he loves! With his oral defensiveness and aspiration problems, he hasn't been able to take a sippy cup, straw or anything else similar. He can only drink from a normal cup. So this Cars cup is perfect for him. To my absolute surprise today, he managed to get his Cars cup, walk to the water cooler and fill his cup with unthickened water! I nearly died of shock, ha ha. I was amazed. It was great! The only downside is that he tried to drink it and started to choke a little.

Mom's a nerd...

As I was going along with our day today something struck me that I wanted to make sure I document. Even though Joshua can't really converse back, I am always talking to him. Pretty much everything I do, I verbalize though it. What I realized today is, sometimes the things I say are a bit nutty, lol. I don't know what happened to me when we brought him home from the hospital, but it was clearly something! Literally the night we got home, this horrible, baby squealing voice emerged from my body. It was powerful. So much so that most times it was uncontrollable. Everything I would say to him was high pitched and squeaky. I imagine this lasted so long because he actually loved it. When he was a baby-baby, it would get him all riled up and excited. He would goo, smile and kick his feet all over the place with enthusiasm. Eventually, as he got older, my baby talk evolved as well. Only it was now silly words and sayings that only the two of us will understand. As I was saying, today I realized just how many off the wall peices of jargon I have created. I love it though. I'm going to write down as many of them as I can remember, starting with today's.

Listed In This Order:
Jargon: Used In a Sentance - Actual Meaning

Super-Soaker: "You've got a super-soaker." - "You have an extremely wet diaper."

Lovely's: "Come here my lovely's." - "Come here my sweet boy."

Lovely Butt's





Pippings... stemming from my little Pip Squeak in NICU

Squiggs... stemming from my little Squiggles in NiCU

Stacking the tables...

Last week Joshua stacked blocks for the first time! This is a feat his occupational therapists have been waiting for since the start of his therapy. Periodically, while Nick is sleeping during the day, I sit down on our sectional to relax and I let Josh play with whatever he chooses at that time. He usually ends up bringing his Disney Pixar Cars right next to me on the couch and races them on the coffee table. Last week however, he brought over four wooden, cylinder blocks from a block/cart set that his Grandma Linda and Great Grandma Gina bought him over a years time ago. He was playing and I wasn't paying much attention until he began acting excited about something. I looked over and he had perfectly stacked all four blocks on top of each other. He was looking at them on the table with pride and accomplishment and was trying to show me what he did. He thought it was the coolest thing. That was the first time he has ever stacked anything! Oh, and I forgot to mention that the blocks were all the same color. I am thinking now that this was intentional because today, he did the very same thing. This time it was only three blocks, but they were all red. Again they were perfectly stacked and he expressed the same excitement as before. It was too cute. Even with all of his setbacks, he is really a tremendously smart boy.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

A Blast from the Past?

Weird thing happened... well, twice actually. The other day I had a picture of Joshua in the NICU up on my computer screen. Nick and I weren't really paying any attention to it and I'm not even sure why it was displaying. Anyway, we were going along with the day as usual, cleaning and what not, until Joshua stopped us in our tracks. He was standing there by the computer, looking at the picture and saying, "ouch". He kept repeating it over and over while he pointed except his pronunciation was more of an "auwwwa". Nick and I were shocked. We often wonder if he can remember being in the hospital, but it seems too unrealistic. However, this isn't the first time Joshua has done something like this. About 6 months ago, Joshua was jumping in his jumper while Nick and I were going through some camcorder videos. The tapes were mixed of footage from home and some footage from the NICU. As the tapes were playing out, Joshua would stop jumping and start crying when the footage from the NICU came on the television. We quickly caught on to this and thought it couldn't possibly be true that he remembered the NICU and was disturbed by it. But, we decided to experiment with the idea anyway and pay closer attention. We continued playing the tapes and when the NICU scenes came on he clearly started to cry. We would then quickly change the chapter to home footage and the crying stopped instantly. I believe we did this three or four times with the exact same result. I think I am pretty convinced that he can remember those tough days when he is reminded of them. I also believe this proves the magnificince and intelligence of the baby and toddler mind. And for that matter, it proves the viability of an unborn baby. If a baby's brain, at 26 weeks gestation, can create and retain memories from it's experiences, then there is no question in my adult mind that human life exists and is viable in the womb!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Toilet Paper Chaser...

Joshua did the craziest thing tonight. I was in our master bathroom and realized that the roll of toilet paper was missing. I called out saying, "I need toilet paper." I didn't think anyone heard me, but to my surprise, Joshua came running in the bathroom with a whole roll of toilet paper! He actually went into the guest bathroom, opened the drawer where I keep the toilet paper and brought it to me. His face was so sweet with accomplishment. I was blown away. Nick and I are astonished by his comprehension and growth lately. Go Josh!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Holding the Spoon...

Oh my gosh! Joshua is finally holding his spoon the right way! I just put him in the high chair to have breakfast and he started feeding himself. When I looked over his spoon was in his right hand and he was holding it the very way his occupational therapist wants him to be. He is really getting good at feeding himself now. What an accomplishment and a tremendous loud off my back! Lol. I'll try to get a picture and post it.

Those are his "Cars" stickers we put on his high chair tray to help him be more interested in eating! (Lighting McQueen, Doc, Mater and Porcia) We got a Ninja food processor for Christmas from my parents and it is wonderful. It whips up the food so fast that everything Joshua eats can be fresh. It has really helped his interest in food too. Since he still can't chew at all it has been a lifesaver in keeping him well nourished.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Christmas 2009...

This past Christmas was absolutely amazing! Joshua was so much fun. It was a dream come true. After years of struggle and worry, we are finally achieving the joys of parenthood. Joshua was so enthusiastic about everything he got on Christmas morning. My parents went a little overboard on the gifts they got him, but it was well worth it. Good thing I changed our guest bedroom into a playroom as an added Christmas gift for him. I don't know what I would have done with everything otherwise! Everything Joshua opened he would stare at and say "wow" or "woah". He opened all of the gifts and then he played with them all. Just before Christmas he really got into The Polar Express and Cars The Movie. They were both his absolute favorite things to watch. It was perfect because it made his excitement for the Polar Express train and the Cars race track he got even greater. Everything was "gung-gung" and "All Aboard". It was too cute. We had a total blast that morning. I think it is safe to say that this was my favorite and most fun Christmas ever. This is a list of some of the most special things Joshua got this Christmas:

Drum Set
Harley Davidson 3 Wheel PowerWheel
Polar Express Train
Car Race Track
Crayola Chalk and Dry Erase Table & Chairs
Blow up Bounce House & Slide
Handy Manny Motorcycle & Action Figure

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High Chair Sleeper...

This is the second day in a row that Josh and I have come home from my parents house and he immediately fell asleep in the high chair. We literally walk inside the house, he asks to eat and when I put him in the high chair he sits there very contently until his eyes close. It's too cute. This is a first for him. He has never fallen asleep on food before like the stories I hear of me and my sisters doing. Right now he is laying in bed next to me, sleeping while I type this. I think I'm going to join him!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

My "Cars" Junkie...

Joshua is such a boy! The first time I showed him Disney Pixar's Cars The Movie he fell in love. For the last two months all he wants to do is watch and play with Cars (he calls them "gung-gungs"). He literally wakes up in the morning and asks me to turn this cartoon on. He gets the remote control, brings it to me and says "gung-gung"! It's hilarious. Goodbye Imagination Movers and Polar Express, Joshua's a Cars boy now! Most parents would frown upon letting their children watch television whenever they want, but for some reason, for Joshua, he has learned so much from the movies he has attached himself to. He picks up comprehension and even words from these shows. It's very amazing. He is so smart that he understands when a joke is made and he actually laughs too. Tonight, we were relaxing in bed because he is still sick and he wanted to watch Cars. There is a part when the Mack truck, named "Mack," falls asleep and loses the race car Lightning McQueen from his trailer. When Lightning was speeding around trying to find Mack Joshua was acting it out as well. He kept screaming... "Maaack" and raising his hands in the air as to gesture a where is he question. Also, when the songs he likes begin to play in the movie he either dances or does a little shake of his feet or head. It is precious! It is truly remarkable watching him develop in this way! It brings the greatest joy, relief and happiness to my heart.

This is a video I put together of Joshua playing with his "Cars" and some other things in his new playroom!

First Ear Infection...

Monday, which was January, 11, 2010, we took Joshua to the doctor because he had another high fever. Doctor Fontana diagnosed him with his very first ear infection! My exclamation does not imply I am happy that he is sick. I am just thankful that God has kept Joshua so healthy since coming home from the hospital. He is nearly 3 years old and has only been sick 3-4 times, non of which were anything but minimal viral infections. This is actually his first illness that required medication post NICU. We are blessed! God is good and Joshua is His miracle. Joshua's fever broke right away after starting the antibiotic but he is still acting aggitated by both ears now and I suspect he is feeling a sore throat. We'll see how he handles this one. He has proven to be quite resilient to date!

A little late for Halloween...

Since I am a complete procrastinator, and am always so busy, I am posting our 2nd Halloween experience with Joshua a little late (two and a half months late to be exact). Joshua's first Halloween in 2008 was a great time. He was a baby NASA Astronaut and was so cute. We had a Halloween party here at the house for the kids (Samantha, Rachel, Shyla, Sabrina... Tricia, Sarah, Steph and Mom & Dad came too). It was a lot of fun but Joshua was only one and he didn't understand what was going on. This Halloween, however, was a blast. Joshua was a trip! We dressed him as an Everlast Boxer with black eyes and band-aids and all. Since he was still so little we took him to Publix for trick or treating since they had been advertising a Monster Bash on Halloween night. Joshua walked in with his orange pumpkin candy bucket and went to town. He ran around the supermarket like he owned the place, lol. He had so much fun. We showed him one time how to lift his bucket up so the employees could put candy in it and he was a professional. He went around to each employee lifting his bucket for more candy. When we got home he even understood that there was candy in the pumpkin bucket that he could eat and he kept asking for "more". He was a riot. I think Halloween 2009 was the start of our feeling "normal" days, or as close normal as we can get. He is the sweetest thing! Pics and video to follow:

Joshua's words...

Right now, Joshua can speak several different words and phrases. Of course, only his mother, father, grandparents and Aunt's can understand what they mean. He still needs a great deal of speach therapy, but here is his current list!

All done
All gone
All aboard
Hi Mom
Hi Dad
Da-Dine (means Aunt Samantha)
Gung-Gung (means Cars)
Oh man!
Hah-Me (mean Handy Manny)
Mee (means Mickey)