Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Zoo day.

Took the younger two to the zoo today. It was a hit.

Charlotte loved the zoo train.

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And Jack got to hang out in the baby carrier all morning.

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Life was good for the littles.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Biggest fan.

Jack has quite the fan base in our house. It is hard to determine who adores him the most, as all three of his siblings are pretty smitten with him. However, Charlotte loves her "baby Jacque," and I often find her laying across the top of him as he plays on the floor. Surprisingly, most of the time Jack doesn't seem to mind (which shocks me as he has such a volatile personality!)....

Though, sometimes, he decides to tell her to get his own way. 

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Charlotte's Web

A month or so after Charlotte was born, I remember having a conversation with Missy about attending a local Down syndrome awareness walk. I was still in a pretty bad place; the shock of Charlotte's diagnosis was very fresh and her upcoming heart surgery loomed over us. However, I agreed that if I didn't have to do anything other than show up, I would be honored if Mis wanted to form a team for Charlotte. Missy set to work, sending out emails and fielding questions from friends and families. In the midst of all her efforts, we also talked about what we wanted to name our team. I am not sure who came up with Charlotte's Web, but it seemed like the logical choice. The web of support that had formed around Charlotte as well as Mike and I and the other kids was incredibly apparent from the start.

That September of 2010, the first Charlotte's Web team was formed, and over 90 of our friends and family walked with us. A few weeks later, I also started this blog and used the same name, as it was originally intended to be a method of communication for all those who wanted to updates about Charlotte during her heart surgery and recovery.

A year after our first Buddy walk, in October of 2011, another LARGE group of Charlotte's Web participants gathered and helped us raise a crazy amount of money. We had a great time, and Charlotte, now with a healthy heart and 15 months old was still inspiring our friends and family to not only accept difference, but embrace it.

Unfortunately our annual tradition of Buddy Walk took a hiatus in 2012 due to Charlotte's hospitalization for her Celiac disease. It was a rough, rough time for our family, and we were sad to miss the walk, but promised to be back in 2013.

AND, we will be.

Currently, Charlotte's Web is in the running for largest team at this Saturday's Buddy Walk. I don't think I will ever quite be able to comprehend the enormity all of those who support us. We thank you.

Over the past three years, Charlotte's Web has grown. New friends, therapists, and teachers have now come into her life and shown crazy amounts of unconditional love and support. Charlotte would not be who she is without her web. We thank each and every one of you.

There is still time to join our team. This event is so much more than the walk; there will be food, face painting, bounce houses, raffles, and more. Find out more by clicking here!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013


Well, she did it. Charlotte (and I!) survived her first day of preschool. And, in true Charlotte style, she rocked it.
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Walking Katherine & Will to the bus stop. 
I walked her in, talked briefly with her aide and her teacher, and told her I was going to leave but would be back in a bit. Her response? "Kay. Bye! Have a good day!" (I don't like to brag, but as a mom, we are all allowed to at some point, so I just have to say, my daughter has some kick-butt manners.)

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Ready to go!

When Jack and I returned to get her a few hours later she was outside playing on a climber with a few of her classmates. Her teachers said she did really, really well and they were impressed by her participation during circle time and at how well she knew her colors (again, I don't want to brag, but if they want to be impressed, ask her to show of her letter recognition skills!). I breathed a sigh of relief, happy to know she hadn't dropped to the ground in protest at every transition like she does at home, and that she was interacting well with her peers.

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This is the look she gave me when I asked if she was ready to go home after I picked her up. 
Katherine & Will had great first days as well. The biggest excitement for Katherine was the realization that in 2nd grade you get your very own assignment notebook. For Will, Kindergarten lived up to his expectations, and he was thrilled to find out that yes, chocolate milk was available everyday to go with his lunch.

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A tad bit nervous about this whole Kindergarten thing.
The house is a bit quiet with the older kids in school, but Jack has been keeping me busy. I am very excited to see what this year brings for my 2nd grader, Kindergartener, and preschooler and look forward to sharing in their new experiences!

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Stay tuned.

Monday, September 2, 2013

See ya, summer!

Another summer is done. Tonight, backpacks are lined up, clothes are laid out and the anticipation of the first day of school tomorrow is high.

We returned from our annual "up north" vacation yesterday, and took today to unpack and unwind before diving into our school year routine tomorrow. Katherine is going to be a 2nd grader, Will a kindergartener, and our baby girl is gearing up for her first year of preschool. Mike said to me earlier, "you mean, you will have 3 hours tomorrow morning with just Jack?" I stifled a laugh as I thought about that statement....just Jack? Hah! I will still have my hands full, no doubt, as though Jack is a bit easier, if all things are not aligned in his little universe, he is not a happy camper.

I have had a few requests for some current pictures of my crew, so in an attempt to keep all my readers happy, here are a few a lot of vacation pictures.

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This kid can SWIM! She spent hours in the water each day!

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Teaching Papa his letters. 

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Katherine's big catch.

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Will's big catch.

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The sign of a good vacation...sleeping kids on the way home!

Check back tomorrow or the next day and I will let you know how Charlotte's (& Katherine and Will's) first day of school goes...I am trying hard to suppress any feelings of anxiety that I have. I know my girl is going to do great, she is ready for this!