April 28, 2011

Going on a EGG Hunt ...

This year there was NO shortage of hidden Easter Eggs for the kids to find. At Aunt Sheri’s and Uncle Bob’s house the Easter Bunny went wild and hid over 50 eggs … Makenna had to bring in her reserve basket cause the eggs were overflowing out of her Elmo basket. 

~ Aunt Sheri, Makenna and Justin ... Ready to Hunt Eggs ~
~ Justin with his Basket FULL of Eggs ~
~ Makenna and her 2 Baskets FULL of Eggs ~

~ The Loot ... MORE candy then we need at our house ~

We had lunch at Sheri and Bob's house and spent the afternoon being lazy just hangin' out ... Sheri and I broke out the wine ... ahhhhh that made for a nice relaxing afternoon while the kids played in outside. ...... then it was time to head to Bruce and Sharon's house for dinner and see if the Easter Bunny left anything at Grandma and Grandpa's house.

~ The kids with Grandma and Grandpa Michael ~
~Makenna looking to see if the Easter Bunny hid any Eggs at Grandma and Grandpa's house ~
~ Justin counting up his finding ... the Easter Bunny aways hides MONEY filled Eggs at Grandma and Grandpa's House! ~

April 24, 2011

Basket Full of Goodies

The Easter Bunny was super unorganized this year but managed to pull it all together at the last minute.  Lucky she just likes to shop for no reason and hide things in random places! 

Justin wasn't super excited about his basket this year ... might be because he asked for an IPOD Touch or a Nitendo DS.  Apparently he thought the Easter Bunny really hit an Economic Upswing this year.  He did change his attitude when I told him that he might just be getting too old for the Easter Bunny to visit.  He decided real quick that half a loaf was better than none.

Justin's basket was full of trading cards ... candy (opps the Easter bunny didn't buy anything but chocolate and Justin DOES NOT eat chocolate so the candy was a bust) ... water bottle ... Headphones ... I-Tunes Card and a Broncos Sweatshirt.  Justin did get excited when I showed him how to make his own playlist on I-tunes and than downloaded it to my Ipod.  Of course he loved the sweatshirt.

Makenna would have been thrilled to have found anything in her basket.  She is super easy to please and is pretty happy with just about anything.  He basket was full of candy ... hair bows ... water bottle ... headphones ... socks ... a toy and the Tangled DVD which she LOVES!!

The Easter Bunny did not forget the Furry Red Monster that lives with us ... YES - ELMO got his own Easter Basket full with Jelly Beans and Elmo Candy filled eggs. 

April 20, 2011

From White 2 Beautiful ...

Dying Easter Eggs is an annual tradition at our house. This year we waited until daddy was home so he could join the fun.

From white to beautiful.  Some bright ... some multicolor ... some with FLAMES!! 

April 1, 2011

Knocked Down ...

Yesterday I experienced heartache. My 4 year old nephew Caleb has Down syndrome. Its amazing how ONE chromosome can be so powerful! The way I live my life has been changed since the day Caleb was born. I am much more patient, have tons more compassion and concern for people with special needs, work delicately at educating my children and others about the importance of “Special Needs Acceptance” and in general try extremely hard to choose my words and actions wisely as I know first hand how the effect it can have on others can be extremely hurtful. You can say I follow the band wagon of others who has been touched by a child with special needs and feels that life is “Better” because of them. But like all things no matter how hard you try...life doesn’t happen without “knock down” moments.

Yesterday was one of those days. My sister Lori shared with me something that happened to her earlier this week. Caleb attends a public Pre-K program in which he is integrated into the regular classroom and has an aide that assists him during class time. Lori has been thrilled with Caleb’s progress, educational growth and the teaching staff and would without a doubt say it has been a blessing to have him attend school. It’s just the “knock down” moments that sting hard. When dropping Caleb off at school the other children where excitedly talking about one of their classmates upcoming birthday party. The sting didn’t come until Lori realized it was one of her close friends hosting the party … a friend who’s children have attended Caleb’s parties in the past … a friend who Lori had confided in about the anguish she feared of Caleb not being invited to parties and other out of school activities … a friend who unknowingly administered the first “birthday party knock down”. Caleb was not invited to the party. None of us know the reason behind Caleb not making “the list” it might have nothing to do with his differences, but as a parent with a child with special needs it hard not to assume the worst.

I’m sure there will be many more “knock down” moments for Lori … nobody ever promised raising kids would be easy nor does she have the misperception that raising a child with special needs comes without social challenges. What I do know is how hard it hit Lori’s heart and how an instant like this is another reminder to continue focusing on building awareness and acceptance. By teaching our children about “God’s Designer Genes” and taking the time to focus on children’s similarities as well as differences we can create a better future for all our children. Every child has a difference some differences are just more noticeable than others; similarities are often easy to see yet easily overlooked.

I’m sorry Lori has to endure these knock down moments but I'm not sorry Caleb has Down Syndrome. Love doesn’t count chromosomes … we love him just the way he is!!