Monday, March 30, 2009

The Right Answer

A layout about a revelation I had the other day as Clayton was singing to me:
Journaling: In the last five years, we’ve learned a lot about prayer. We’ve prayed for complete healing for both of our boys, fully expecting for our version of “healing” to be realized. Our human minds could only fathom one version of healing for our twins: two healthy, “normal” boys running around and playing. But the Lord has shown us that our type of healing wasn’t the only kind around. Shawn was entirely healed the moment he entered Heaven—never having to experience pain again. And in Clayton’s case, his healing has come more slowly and in sweeter doses. Each milestone is more special than the last, simply because he has overcome so much and defied all the medical odds. He wouldn’t be our Clayton if he hadn’t had to fight all these battles! My mother’s heart still has days that it longs for my twins to be here on earth together, totally well and strong little guys. But as time passes, I realize that God’s will is the best will despite our original prayers. And as my baby sings the words “Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus” back to me, I’m amazed to realize that even though we haven’t always gotten the answers we were looking for, we have always been blessed with the right answers to our prayers.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Patriotic Duty

One of the Caravan classes at church is studying the flag in order to complete their badge requirements. They had some guest Boy Scouts come in to teach them all about the flag and it's symbolism, so Clayton's class got to join in. He was so excited to have his turn helping to fold the flag!
Thanks to Ms. Sherrie for helping out and to Bailee for being a great partner!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

29 Weeks

YAY for another week of pregnancy! Don't have much to report since I didn't even have to see the doctor this week. I did go in for my shot, but got to skip the ultrasound this time since I've been doing so well! This week has been a little weird because I'm actually preparing for the baby--something I didn't get to do the last go around. I've been going through Clayton's baby clothes and sorting through what I can use. I even managed to get registered this week (even though I really didn't have a clue what I was doing!). I hope I'm remembering all the basics, we'll just have to wait and see when the baby gets here!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Saving the Cord Blood

Just like when I was pregnant with the boys, I spend lots of time during this pregnancy watching those always available baby shows. They seem to be on all. day. long. I kind of have a love/hate relationship with them, mainly because they rarely show birth stories like my boys', just the happy-go-lucky ones where a nice, healthy baby comes right on time. But I watch anyway. And since I watch, I've seen umpteen commercials about saving your baby's cord blood for future use. And while it would definitely be a good thing for Baby C if he ever needed it, I've found through a lot of research that Clayton may benefit as well. Doctors at Duke University are experimenting with treating Cerebral Palsy with the stem cells found in umbilical cord blood. The catch right now is that they only use the child's very own cord blood for the treatment. But with the way medical research goes these days, we're hoping that the use of a sibling's cord blood becomes one of their treatments. It's definitely not a cure-all, but any improvement we could see in Clayton would be well worth the money spent on banking the cord blood. You can't help but get excited by watching the videos of children who have already undergone treatment.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Another Full Weekend

We had another happenin' weekend around our house. We spent Friday night at the Gaither Concert and didn't get home until after midnight--I couldn't believe Bill Gaither kept the senior citizens out so late!! We just had to go because when they are on TV, Clayton is mesmerized by all the singing and praising that goes on. It was definitely a little different at a live concert though--he sang along with the songs he knew, but he was completely distracted by all that was going on around him. We were right next to the stairs, so he had to stare at each person who walked up and down--he just couldn't get enough of the people!

And even though we thought we'd take it easy on Saturday, we ended up going shopping for some Easter clothes--Clayton's the only one who actually ended up with an Easter outfit. Tried to find him some shoes, but finding shoes for a kid with high muscle tone can be a little more than frustrating. Brian and I both just gave up after trying on endless pairs of shoes.

Yesterday was beautiful and we even made it to the playground for a little bit--we couldn't stay forever because I couldn't help Brian and one person can only carry Clayton around for so long . . . he did get to enjoy the swings and the slide though. After that, he just wanted to get back to "riding in daddy's truck." We ended up coming home and cooking hot dogs on the grill. And since Clayton was doing his own cooking and talking up a storm, I thought I'd share it here for my blog readers. (I wish I had gotten the camera out sooner because by this time he was losing steam on the conversation--but you'll still get to see that he's a talker!) Hope you all enjoy!

Friday, March 20, 2009

First Day of Spring

So glad the sun is shining today! It's amazing how great it feels to ride around town with the sunroof open and the radio up loud!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

28 Weeks

Look at that little face! (Had to turn it vertical so everyone could see him straight on). He's looking so much like a chubby little baby instead of one of those little aliens they all start out as! All is well with my cervix--in fact it's longer than ever. That progesterone is definitely doing it's job! I'm doing so well I get to wait two whole weeks before I see the doctor again. Definitely a good sign! He's finally head down again, which is much more comfortable for this momma, since he's been doing his Jazzercises for the last 24 hours it seems.
I'm really starting to feel the pregnancy these days. My hip bones feel like they are going to split apart sometimes and I get heartburn from everything that I eat. I'm also extremely tired--I honestly wish I could just nap all day! And there are some weird things that keep it interesting as well: restless leg syndrome (my right leg jumps around the bed all night!) and major muscle cramps each morning in my legs. And even though I'm not lifting Clayton anymore, just sitting with him on the couch is starting to wear me out--he just seems to wrestle me to death and doesn't realize I can't handle it. Not complaining about any of this since I'm so glad to still be pregnant, but definitely making note of the changes in my body and energy level!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

In Daddy's Truck

Afternoons have definitely been different lately. The prettier the weather, the more guilty I feel for not being able to do anything fun with Clayton once we get home from school. Normally, we would go to the store, go for a walk, or at least sit on the porch to enjoy getting out. But since I can't lift him, once we get home and Brian gets him unloaded, he is pretty much stuck in his chair until Brian comes back from work. Not a fun way to spend a beautiful afternoon if you're five! So lately, Brian's been trying to take Clayton with him on his errands if it's feasible and I've even started going along for the rides as well. Clayton is one happy camper riding in daddy's truck (one of his favorite activities), and these days going to the "paint store" and "Lowe's house" are at the top of his fun list. Yesterday was so nice, we left the school and headed for the store without even going home. We eventually had to come back and get the truck for the supplies, but we headed right back out and Clayton was in heaven riding around town. And since we didn't have his wheelchair at Lowe's, he had a first yesterday with riding in the buggy at the store. He had to work extra hard at sitting up, and you could tell he was tired by the time we were leaving--but there's nothing like a little extra therapy while you're shopping!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Playing with Photoshop

I got a new version of Photoshop and now I can finally play with all the downloadable actions available like the rest of the world!! I looked through some of my pics and just picked these randomly to start playing with. I don't think I would have ever had the patience to do all of this in the darkroom--I'm glad I got in on the digital age and it can all be done sitting in front of the computer! (By the way, all the actions I used on these were downloaded from The Pioneer Woman's site).

"Seventies" action with a little boost on color:

"Vintage" action with a slight reduction in opacity:


"PW's Black and White" action:

"Soft and Faded" action with "Boost" and a slight reduction in opacity:

"Lovely and Ethereal" with "Define and Sharpen:"

I'm getting braver and braver with my camera and editing skills these days. It will be interesting to see if I can get considerably better over the next year! (A big thanks to my friend Rhonda for her help these days!)

Monday, March 16, 2009

Golf Tourney

Our church had a golf tournament as a fundraiser for our Bible Quizzers this weekend. And in true Arkansas fashion, the warm weather turned wet and cold just in time . . . nothing like a cold and dreary day on the golf course! Brian's never been much of a golfer, so thankfully he teamed up with some not-so-competitive teammates--they ended up having a blast just goofing off mostly! Clayton spent most of his time jumping from one cart to another--he loved driving the "four wheeler" around the course! Thanks to my friend Tanya who put up with his crazy driving!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

27 Weeks

YAY for another week of pregnancy! And another YAY for Baby C reaching another milestone: he crossed the two pound mark and weighed 2 pounds, 3 ounces today!!! Amazing how those little things seem so reassuring to me and Brian. I took my glucose test (never got that far last time) and even though the stuff I had to drink didn't taste bad, I still gagged a couple of times just knowing it was something from the doctor! (Yes, I'm weird like that!)
I'm actually getting to the point where I'm letting myself celebrate a bit and be excited about this new little baby. It's not that I haven't been excited, but I've definitely been guarded so far. Waiting for the other foot to drop so to speak. But with each passing day, I know his chances of survival and chances of a healthy life are better and better. And in Clayton's words, all I can say is "Praise the Lord!" :)

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Clean Freak

Our church is one of three in our town that hosts Upward Basketball each January and February. Brian and I usually volunteer to work a few weekends and Clayton decided he liked being on the clean up crew. Nothing new there considering his favorite activities at home seem to be watching anyone sweeping, vaccuuming, dusting, etc.! He had a ball helping sweep each time we were there for clean up and bless the hearts of the people I forced into pushing him around while trying to do their jobs!

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Great to Get Out

Finally! A weekend of warm weather! It was so nice to get out of the house this weekend. We didn't do much today, but yesterday was packed with activity. Clayton and Brian went for a four wheeler ride in the morning and once they got back Clayton and I watched Brian clip the crepe myrtles (yes, I know we're late on this!). After that, we were off to a birthday party and horseback riding! We weren't sure how Clayton would react to the horses because we tried to get him to ride one in the fall but he wouldn't have anything of it. But after watching the other kids yesterday, he decided he'd give it a try. And as soon as his first ride was over, he said "DO AGAIN!" He was all about riding that horse! He even got his own set of reins since Ms. Toby said he was wanting to drive the whole time. Typical Clayton! He had three long rides, and even got to go on the trail instead of just staying in the ring. (He's kinda special like that!) I'm so glad he liked it because I've really been interested in getting him involved in equesterian therapy. Ms. Toby said she has done it in the past, but it takes a lot of hoop jumping since she isn't an actual therapist. We'll be looking into for sure because he was so excited once he figured out how fun it was!
Once we were back home, we went for a short walk and then Clayton and I watched Brian give the dog a bath. All in all, a great family day! Amazing how invigorating a little warm weather will make you feel!
And I've included this last pic just so everyone out there in blogland can see how crazy pregnant I'm looking--I didn't even realize it until I saw the pic myself. It's like my belly just popped up overnight!

Friday, March 06, 2009


They just have to be the sweetest words ever!!

Since the first time we heard him say those words, Clayton's been pretty stingy with them to say the least. But he surprised me the other night when I said "I love you so much, Clayton." He blurted it back out to me before he could even catch himself! Made this Momma's heart melt for the millionth time!

Thursday, March 05, 2009

26 Weeks

This baby just loves the breech position! So instead of showing us his pretty little face, he's always wanting to show off his busy little feet! And that leg reminds me so much of Brian's legs! Anyone else think so?? Do you see the calf muscles like I do?! It's amazing how their little bodies are so perfect!

I'm okay with breech in general since I'll probably have to have a c-section anyway, but the entire ultrasound he was literally kicking all over my cervix (I feel him doing this all the time!). I'm really hoping he won't kick the door completely down! The doc was less than happy with this current hobby of his--she's hoping he'll turn back around and stay that way!

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Dr. Seuss Week

This week Clayton's school is celebrating Dr. Seuss's birthday. Everyday has been dedicated to a different book. Yesterday, they focused on "The Cat in the Hat" and they were all supposed to wear crazy hats. And since Clayton didn't really have a crazy hat, I just put his daddy's visor on him--the big surprise was that he kept it on long enough to show all of his teachers and still had it on when I left. I thought he looked quite cute so I of course had to snap a picture!

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

What I'm Reading

This past Sunday, our Sunday School class started a new series centered around John Rosemond's new book, "Parenting by the Book." (The "Book" being the Bible). I'm about halfway through the book and it's definitely an eye-opener on the changes in child-rearing over the last fourty years and in turn, the break down of the traditional American family. It's a great resource for those who strive to raise their children the way God intended!