Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

I just finished preparing my 2nd turkey ever (no comments, please!). Elijah was as uninterested in what I was doing as could be. I really thought he'd wonder about the turkey. I'm not sure that he's ever made the connection that a turkey that says, "gobble, gobble" is the same turkey as the turkey sausage that he eats. I was wondering how we'd handle this today, but it never came up! :)

The time between Elijah's birthday and Thanksgiving will forever be marked by the year that Elijah was born. In 2004, Thanksgiving was 3 days after he was born. That year, I was still admitted in one hospital (for nearly dying from loss of blood) and Elijah was in another hospital. We wouldn't have had a Thanksgiving meal except a woman I worked with named Renee cooked us an entire Thanksgiving spread. We sat in the ICU waiting room while I received a blood transfusion and ate an incredible Thanksgiving dinner. We are forever grateful that she gave us that gift. The amazing thing is that I haven't seen Renee in quite a while until yesterday. I ran into her at the doctor's office and was able to thank her, again, for the incredible gift.

I have always loved that we all stop our normal lives on one day a year to be grateful. A friend of mine takes this a step further...she says three things she is grateful for every night before she goes to sleep. This world would be a better place if we all did that...I am going to try it...want to join in?

Here are some pictures of things I'm thankful for...

Spending quality time together

Unconditional love

My dad taking a day off to go to the zoo with us

Elijah's infectious smile

Elijah's love of the outdoors (he's smelling a burning bush)

Cookouts with good food and great company

Elijah and Stella's friendship I'm thankful for so much more, but I have to get cooking! Happy Thanksgiving to all.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Blow out candles, again!

This was the best birthday yet! We spent the morning playing and just being together. We reminisced about what we were doing four years ago. The day of his birth brings such mixed emotions for us. Of course we cherish that day, but it wasn't necessarily a happy was quite terrifying, in fact. We feel incredibly lucky for him to be where he is.

Elijah couldn't have been cuter than he was last night at his birthday party. He was fantastic and we even avoided meltdowns from being overwhelmed. We did the typical birthday cake with candles, and after we sang "happy birthday" and he blew out his candles, he asked if we could do it again! Why not, right? So, Elijah blew out candles twice...

About half way through opening his b-day presents, he got tired of it and decided that he'd really rather play with his balloons. While the adults wanted to see him open his presents, I was secretly proud that he didn't really care about getting more.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

And so it begins...

As Elijah approaches his 4th birthday, we thought it would be appropriate to stop using his Caringbridge blog. Caringbridge is designed to update people on the medical condition of a family member. We feel so blessed to not need their services anymore.

This is the first year that Elijah really "gets" his birthday. He has been talking about it for weeks and he can't wait to "blow out candles" and "have a birthday party!" Today, we celebrated his birthday at school with his friends. I spent last night baking cupcakes (don't laugh) and Elijah and I went today to pick out plates, napkins, and party hats (tractor design, of course). It was so darn cute to see his friends sing happy birthday in English and Hebrew and then dig in to the cupcakes (and they were good, if I do say so myself!).

We also had our first real parent/teacher conference today. We love his school and teachers so much and it was a joy to sit and listen to how wonderful they think he is. :) They really do see his abilities instead of focusing on his disabilities, and I appreciate that so much. It's not that they ignore his struggles, but they use what he's good at to help him learn and grow. They told us that he is the happiest kid in his class...that absolutely warms my heart.

I have vowed to update this blog more than I have the other (it's been since February) part of keeping that promise is that my updates won't be long, but they'll be frequent. :)


(I had to add a picture of Elijah at Halloween...we had so much fun!)