Saturday, June 25, 2011

Hydrocephalus 101 Video

A friend emailed me the link to this video from Children's Hospital Boston. It has a really excellent explanation (complete with drawings) of hydrocephalus and the different treatments that are available. Check it out if you are interested:

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Simple and Delicious

Butter + Marshmallows + Rice Krispies = Rice Krispies Treats

Yummy Sticky Goodness.

Harding is a huge fan!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

New OT

Shelby started last week with her new occupational therapist, Adam. Here they are practicing holding on to the swing with leftie. She was getting pretty good at it by the end of the session, and she and I have continued to work on it together throughout the week. I'm hoping to see some significant progress this summer with OT, PT, and feeding since I'll have much more time to re-enforce concepts outside of therapy.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Weekend Getaway/Neurosurgeon Check-up

We've just returned home from a fun weekend in Raleigh/Durham. Shelby had a cat-scan this morning and we saw Dr. Grant afterward. He said that her brain looks exactly the same as it did in December and the shunt is working fine. That is just fine with us!

To make this trip about more than doctor's visits, we traveled on Saturday to Carrboro to hang out with my college buddy Kristin and her boyfriend Dave. They took us to their neighborhood park and entertained Harding and Shelby for us. We were going to have a picnic dinner Saturday evening with them, but there were severe thunderstorms, so we hung out on their porch instead. We spent Saturday and Sunday night with my mom's cousin Fran in Raleigh (who is the best hostess ever) and really enjoyed spending time with her and her daughter Meredith. We also visited my cousin Katy and Aunt Nora on Sunday, went swimming, ate some delicious eastern NC barbecue, and toured the NC Museum of Life and Science (pictures below). It was great catching up with friends and family this weekend and since school ended on Friday, this was a wonderful way to start out summer break.

Right now, Harding and Trip are building an elaborate train track together, Shelby is re-acquainting herself with her favorite toys on the floor, and I'm about to start my first book of the summer. Life is good!

Friday, June 10, 2011

School's Out for the Summer!

Who is ready for summer?
They are! (Swinging at the Chromey's house across the street).

Harding is! (Playing in the creek at the park in Montreat).

They are! (Chowing down on fruit, chips, and chicken nuggets at Shelby's birthday party).

Shelby is! (Swinging at her birthday party in Montreat).

They are! (Going for a ride on the Kubota at our land Saturday afternoon).

They are! (Aubrey serenading us while Shelby scoots around).

Shelby is! (Girlfriend loves to swing).

Last weekend truly felt like summer to me. We had a wonderful, carefree weekend full of being outside and hanging out with dear friends. But really, summer officially begins for us this afternoon since today is the last day of school. I am so looking forward to it!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Appointment Rounds

Shelby just turned 2, so that means we have had check-ups with her various doctors in the past few weeks and there will be a couple more this summer. Here's a quick run-down of the one's we have had so far:

Asheville finally got a pediatric orthopedist at the children's hospital, so we decided to try her out (versus traveling to Shelby's previous doctor in Charlotte)--especially since Shelby's hip dysplasia is a minor concern. We liked Dr. Hooker and will continue to see her. They did x-rays and one side of Shelby's hip still shows borderline dysplasia so we are to continue with the hip abducation brace at night. Dr. Hooker also wrote a prescription for A.F.O. braces for Shelby's feet and she was fitted for them last Friday. They should come in in a couple of weeks.

Shelby did the visual accuity test and scored really low: 20/2700. Trip and I know she sees better than that. The doctor assured us that these tests are not accurate, especially when they are done on two year olds. Shelby was just fussy and not the least bit interested in looking at the black and white cards. Once Shelby is cognitively able to identify pictures, we'll get a much better idea what and how much she sees. It is obvious she is seeing a lot though, which is amazing to behold! Dr. Bachinsky said eventually Shelby will get glasses to protect her eyes and magnify things, but not yet. We also may look at doing surgery to correct her strabismus (eye crossing) at some point, but not yet since both eyes cross at times but not consistently. Dr. Bachinsky feels that Shelby's right eye is stronger than her left one (no surprise there), so we are going to start patching the right eye a couple hours a day in order to strengthen the left one (this is the same concept as contraint induced therapy for her right arm).

New Occupational Therapist:
We met Shelby's new OT on Monday for an initial evaluation. I am optimistic about working with him. He is a recent graduate, has many new ideas, and seems very enthusiastic. He also has experience working with people who are visually impaired. I liked how he came right in and instead of chatting with me, crawled under the table to greet Shelby and get to know her. She immediately called him "Matt" even though his name is Adam which is a good sign because Uncle Matt is one of Shelby's all-time favorite people. Some of our goals for OT include using her hands for bilateral play, learning to use a spoon for self-feeding, opening up the fist on her left hand, and increasing the use of that left hand. Adam has his work cut out for him because Shelby has her own ideas about what she wants to do during therapy.

We head to Duke on Monday for a CT scan and an appointment with Dr. Grant (the neurosurgeon). We'll see the pediatrician and neurologist in July.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Nice picture of the two of us

My mom snapped this picture of Trip and me at a friend's wedding we attended a couple weekends ago. Even though we were looking into the sun, its the best picture I have seen of the two of us in a long time.

Look for updates on Shelby soon....we've been slammed with various appointments and evaluations lately and there is much to share.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Two Years Old!

Two years ago today, it was Shelby's due date, my water had broken around 6 a.m., and we were checked-in to the hospital, walking the halls, breathing through contractions, excited about meeting our baby girl. She came on schedule around 6 that evening and our lives have never been the same since. She is beautiful, sassy, and amazing and we love her so much. This morning Harding, Trip, and I woke Shelby up singing "Happy Birthday". Today we will do all of Shelby's favorite things, including snuggling, singing the wheels on the bus repeatedly, reading lots of books, swinging at the park, and splashing in the swimming pool. Happy birthday Shelby Frances!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Anniversary Breakfast!

Six years ago, I married my best friend. I love him for so many different reasons--one of them being his ability to put together beautiful and tasty dishes like the one above. This was Trip's take on Sunny Point Cafe's Huevos Rancheros. He very appropriately surprised me with these this morning. During the short pre-kids period of our marriage, we would eat breakfast at Sunny Point every weekend. That habit became less convenient after Harding was born. I'm enjoying lounging around the house in pajamas with the whole family this morning though. Don't worry, we've got a kid-less weekend planned for later in the month when things aren't so crazy. But for now, we have to get ready for Shelby's birthday party which is today.