Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Frustrated! Ashlyn is still struggling with communication. I can only wonder how long it's suppose to take before normal communication can occur. She has a real problem with focusing and doing seatwork in school. If the assistant teacher is not there to basically sit next to her the whole time to help, she doesn't get any of it done. It was suggested by someone to even hire someone to come into the school and be there during seatwork time to keep her focused. Is there anyone out there with any suggestions? She is 7 1/2 years old now adn she's been here for over 10 months now, so I wonder how long it takes for the communication to truly be there. I kept hearing about a year, but that is quickly creeping up. She understands most of what you say, but does not know how to answer questions sometimes...mainly the "W" questions.

We've just spent the last 3 hours with her doing her 2 pages of seatwork, writing her spelling words and special sounds, writing two sentences with two of her spelling words and studying for her spelling test tomorrow. We haven't even touched her bible verse that she's suppose to know by Friday and it's now an hour and a half past her bedtime. I try not to yell at her, but it's hard, especially when she plays her games of pretending not to understand. I only know this because as soon as I yell, she magically knows the answer. Not sure if this was some sort of survival mechanism for her or a get out of doing whatever card by pretending not to know. It's very frustrating. Sorry, I'm venting, but I'm having a really hard time with this.

UGH! Is there anyone out there that has been through something like this and can offer support (words of wisdom or advice).

On another note, she did start speech therapy today. I'm hoping this will truly help her with her speech articulation and pronunciation of special blends. I'm hoping it helps enough so that she won't need surgery later and all her peers will be able to finally understand her. We have an appointment with an oral surgeon, Dr. Schmid on Friday to go over pulling her two baby teeth so that the back teeth have room to come forward.

Please pray for Ashlyn to overcome all that she has and is enduring, and please pray for Jason and I to give us the strength to continue working with her without losing our patience as much as we do.

Thank you & God Bless!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Saturday September 11, 2009

So, Calvary Chapel Academy started a new sport at their school this year...Swimming. We thought that would be really cool for Kaylyn to join and so did about 40 other parents. At the meeting to go over what exactly Swimming would consist of, about half the parents and children left when told that practices would be held at 6:15 am Tuesday and Thursday down in Palm Bay. We actually considered not allowing her to join because of this reason. I mean, she can be cranky enough without getting up at 5:45 am two days a week. In the end, we decided we would try it with the contract of not giving attitude due to lack of sleep and not allowing it to affect her grades.

Well, it's about a month after practices started and their first meet was this past Saturday. I haven't seen Kaylyn practice and I know that she has never known what the freestyle, back stroke, or breast stroke was before swimming practice. I was absolutely blown away with how good she became at these strokes in just a month! She placed second in the free style, had the lead in the freestyle relay with her team which came in third, came in 1st with the back stroke, and came in 1st with the breast stroke. This is one competitive sport that she may end up really enjoying and being very good at. I'm very proud of my little sweet pea!

Ashlyn really wants to do it, but is still learning how to swim without her swim vest on. She was a little jealous at the swim meet, but when Kaylyn was up for competition, she came through and cheered her on and said, "Kaylyn's fast and strong!" Hopefully next year Ashlyn will be a good enough swimmer to be able to join the team. They both absolutely love swimming.

In remeberance of 9/11, the kids wore red, white, and blue ribbon on their flip flops! America, we will never forget all the lives that were lost on that day!!!

Monday September 6, 2010 Labor Day

We spent Labor Day with friends. Our family and the Sprinkles headed over to the Snyder's house to hang out and eat lunch. The kids were going to go swimming, but it rained and thundered, so that was out of the question, but the kids had fun playing around Allie's room and playroom. They also enjoyed snacking on all the chips and fruit whenever they wanted. It was good times with good friends!

September 10, 2010 Submucous Cleft Palate

So we met with the cleft palate team at Arnold Palmers on Friday. When I say team, I mean team. I've never met with that many doctors ever, even when I had my jaw surgery at Shands. There was a craniofacial surgeon, a pediatric orthodontist, a speech pathologist, an audiologist, a pediatrician, a pediatric ENT, a geneticist, and a social case worker! Oh my goodness!

The craniofacial surgeon only looked in her mouth and said there were three indications of her submucous cleft palate and it was obvious. Amazing! The ENT she sees locally was too scared to diagnose it and this guy just looks and sees it...granted this is one of his specialties, but still! The speech pathologist said she was losing air through her nose when speaking, so probably after having some speech therapy and getting her articulation down, she'll probably need a little palate repair. The orthodontist said that she had an issue with her teeth unrelated to the submucous cleft palate and would need to have baby teeth removed to give room for some teeth to come forward. The geneticist wants us to run some blood test to look for some clues as to why she was born with two heart defects and the submucous cleft palate. The audiologist would like her to have another hearing test since she's had the tubes put in her ears and they're healed now.

Whew! I made an appointment with another local dentist to discuss pulling her teeth. Unfortunately, Dr. Tuttle cannot do this, but has recommended this dentist to us. We have a follow-up appointment with the craniofacial surgeon in 8 weeks to see how far along her speech is coming by then.

I would say that God does have a small sense of humor. We put down when adopting that we were willing to take a child with either cleft lip/palate or a minor/moderate hear defect and instead of the either/or, he gave us the and :-) God never gives us more than we cannot handle, and to me, in a sense, this is easy!

In case you're curious what exactly a submucous cleft palate is, there's a good website that explains it very well:

August 28th Kara's Jewelry Party at my house

My sister Kara is running in a half marathon for the Luekemia & Lymphoma Society. As part of her raising money, a good friend, Evon Morton, who is a Premier Jewelry consultant, donated her profit from Kara's jewelry party for this cause. I did all my Christmas shopping for the women! She's almost reached 100% of her donations. If you'd like to help or read about her progress, visit her page at:

Disney Vacations Dec. 2009 & May/June/July 2010

Finally got around to finishing the huge scrapbook from our last three vacations...the first three vacations since we've had Ashlyn, not including the trip to China :-) The kids really loved Disney and the Disney cruise! We enjoyed meeting with other families for each of our vacations. Enjoy this scrapbook.