Friday, December 23, 2016

Catching up...

 It's been way too long since I've actually sat down to write. So here's a quick update...CHOP Buddy Walk was amazing! The kids had a blast, the team was amazingly supportive and Porter's Peeps raised over $11,000 for the Trisomy 21 Program at CHOP. THANK YOU to our village who came out to make this happen!  

We spent much of October outside, as we were blessed with a mild fall. We played basketball, had lots of fall festival fun, cheered on Penny as she cheered during football games, enjoyed playground time, celebrated daddy's birthday and so much more! 
For Halloween, we had fun dressing up as the crew from Doc McStuffins. The kids LOVE this Disney Channel show and so do I! The "Time for your Checkup" song has definitely made doctor appointments easier for Porter and Pax to understand.  
Porter started horseback riding. He loves riding "my pony," Gaelan. Therapeutic riding is such a cool therapy...he definitely enjoys it!
 We celebrated Nana's birthday with our cousins.
 This crew is definitely fun!
And, before the month was over, Porter took a pause and spent three weeks in a full leg cast. We're still not certain of what the injury was (we know he hurt his leg wrestling with Pax), but the orthopedic doc was on point...three weeks in a cast seemed to do the trick.
We traveled to Phoenix to visit the Thompsons for Thanksgiving...I'll post about that fun soon. And now, we find ourselves at the end of December. We've been reading a Christmas book a day as in years past. We've been chasing our elves around the house. But we've been on the go  much more than ever before. The days pass quickly. These kids grow in the blink of an eye. They  make life interesting and fun and messy and perfect all at the same time. 

I hope to post more about our many adventures soon. Happy Holidays!

Saturday, October 1, 2016

NYC and Lehigh Valley Buddy Walks 2016

In September, we headed to NYC for the NDSS #NYCBuddyWalk 
This was our 2nd trip to NYC for Buddy Walk (we went back in 2014), and Porter's 2nd time on the big screen in Times Square. Thanks to Erik and Kelly, Devan and Porter's love was on display for all to see.
We had a great time in Times Square and had an adventurous day in the city...the kids saw some characters in Times Square. We got to ride a school bus through the city, which is an experience in an of itself...our trip from Central Park back to Times Square included a stop on a narrow street due to a disabled vehicle that our bus driver and a few other Buddy Walkers from the bus in front of us literally picked up and moved out of the way so we could continue. 
We walked in Central Park. Porter, Penny and Nana had a blast! Many thanks to Nana for making the trip with us...I couldn't have done it on my own!
The next weekend, we Buddy Walked in the Lehigh Valley with Devan's Designer Genes. 
These two! They're game changers for sure! Love seeing them together!
Again, Nana joined us to make the day possible, while Daddy stayed home with croupy Pax.
This year, our buddy Evan also joined the team. Porter was so happy to see two of his favorite people in the same place. The Lehigh Valley Buddy Walk has so many fun things for the kiddos to do! They always have an amazing day at the Velodrome!  The sun was shining and spirits were high as we spent a day with some amazing friends celebrating some amazing kiddos!
Tomorrow, we'll Buddy Walk for CHOP at Villanova. We can't wait! Praying for good weather and safe travels for all our family and friends who will make the trip to join us. It's our most favorite day of the year! 

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Calling our Peeps!

We're one month away from CHOP Buddy Walk. We'd love for you to join our team!
Visit Porter's Buddy Walk Page for more information!
These two hope to see you there!
Thank you so much to everyone who has and continues to support Porter's Peeps in the CHOP Buddy Walk!

The Down Syndrome Diary

I finished my entry for the Down Syndrome Diary in July. It's a project started by a mom from the Detroit area who has a goal of providing more than just medical information to those who receive a Down syndrome diagnosis. By sharing our stories, the hope is that others will gain knowledge and find support through our community. The original diary has been to ten countries and is close to complete. There are six new diaries making the rounds and I had the opportunity to share our story in one of those!
Here is what I wrote:

Thanks always for following our story and supporting Porter! We are so thankful for our village!


Where did you go August? I can't believe today's September 1st! Here are some quick highlights and random thoughts from our past month...
We enjoyed a month off from swim season, but still tried to enjoy the pool when we had time. 
We used our time to refocus and unpack. 
Porter started a 12 week course of outpatient OT at CHOP. 
Penny ditched the training wheels on her bike.
Pax slept through the night a few times.
We got to know our neighbors a bit better thanks to our neighborhood block party.

The kids loved playing basketball in the driveway.
We made it to the Schuylkill County Fair for the first time in glad we made it!
My HS girlfriends still make my world a better place.
I don't know what I'd do without our support system of our parents, sisters and brother-in-laws, daycare family, friends and village!
Putting the water table on the back deck was one of the best decisions we've made here.
We went crazy for the Olympics!
Pax started singing along to songs in the car. His current favorites are Crocodile and Dino Dig from our Alex and the Kaleidoscope Band CD. 
We did a 5K to support Sebastian Riding Association...we hope Porter will start riding soon.
Pax's ear checked out great post-tubes!
Porter jumped in muddy puddles and made my co-workers smile. 
We went to a Phillies game with Papa and our friend Evan's fun!
Penny had her first sleepover, had a great Nana-day and started cheer-leading.
We love LuLaRoe.
Everyone was happy to have Uncle Chris in town for a few was so nice to get the Villanova crew together!
There's never a dull moment here with this crew. They keep my hands and heart full. 

Sunday, July 10, 2016

On the verge of one

In six days, my baby will be one! I remember this point last summer. I was doctor sent me for another ultrasound to check on the baby's size. I thought I was ready, but I really had no idea what life with three kids was going to be like. This past year has been wonderful and difficult, crazy and amazing. It's been hard. But, we did it!
This kid here is an absolute joy during the day time! He is curious and happy and funny. But, for the past year, night time has been rough. He eats all night long. And our pediatrician has said, he should be capable of sleeping through the night. That we can stop night time nursing when either one of us is ready to stop. But I couldn't bring myself to stop. 
Paxton has had fluid in his ears since Christmas, when he had his first ear infection. We tried four different antibiotics. We kept returning for re-checks, only to find fluid. After the fifth official ear infection in May, we decided to go for tubes. 
Nursing at night seemed to be the only thing that offered him comfort. While it was hard for me, it made a difference for him. If I could go back and do it over, I would have pushed for tubes sooner. But, we all hoped the spring/summer would bring healthier ears. When it didn't, we knew it was time. On July 5th, Pax had his tube surgery. We're in recovery mode. And, last night, one week before his 1st birthday, Pax slept through the night for about the fifth time in his little life.
This boy is going to keep me on my toes! His hugs and kisses are extra sweet. He loves to play ball and eat. He loves his "dada" and refuses to say "mama". He waves hi and bye! He says all done when he's had enough. He loves to be outside, but hates the grass. He loves the pool! He likes to dance, especially in the grocery store.
We can't wait for his birthday! We're fully expecting the best cake smash this little family has seen! 
Mr. Pax...I love you so much! I can't believe you're almost one!

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Happy Jeanne!

Back in April, we packed up the van and headed to Cleveland to celebrate this amazing lady on her 88th birthday!
Pax got to meet most of the Thompson and Droughton families...he was well loved all weekend! 
It's always awesome to see cousins playing together!
And to get snuggles from your aunts and uncles!
And Jeanne brought her family's always so great to see everyone! To hear the stories, to hear the advice. Our families are big and fabulous and there are so many stories to be shared and lessons to learn. Aunt Ruth said something in conversation that will stick with me forever- "what does love look like at this phase"'s probably the wisest parenting advice that I've heard to date and it's something I've been trying to keep in mind no only as I parent, but as I live.
Porter loved running with Godfather Tommy! 
And the cake! Oh the cake! Susie made a German chocolate cake for this special was amazing! 
Family time is time well spent. 
We visited Malley's, spent some time at the park, enjoyed some meals out with both sides of the family and spent time together. We're so glad we were able to head out for a visit!

Busy Bees

Life has been busy and I've been slow to update. In between some big things happening around here, there are so many little every day moments that we love. Some days, daycare pick up runs smooth...some days it's chaos. Every day, these three are so happy to be reunited! Pax's teacher captured this sweet moment for us recently. 
Since our lessons at Ursinus in March, we've been working on our skills. We're happy to report that Penny is officially swim team ready! Now that she's over her fear, she's happy to be swimming with daddy, learning so much from him. Turns out, she's quite a natural at backstroke. Luckily, she's got mommy's kick ;)
Mr. P had his first Special Olympics experience. The Young Athletes Spring program was track. We only made one week between the rain and our schedules, but it was awesome to see where we will be headed!
And this kid...he's into everything! Climbing, pulling up on anything he can and crawling fast and furious. 
Dada, Nana and catch are his first words. He loves to play ball! And, he loves to eat...he likes everything except cottage cheese and bananas.
I'm hopeful that I'll get back to regular updates here soon. In the meantime, check us out over on Instagram- mammat10.