I decided to start blogging about Jordan from the moment I found out I was pregnant. Jordan was born with a little arm that didn't grow like most babies. Her left arm stopped just above the elbow. Now I'm committed to making sure Jordan gets everything out of life. We feel blessed to be the parents of a very special little girl.


Such a busy weekend

Jordan is exhausted. I'm exhausted. We're all exhausted. But MAN did we have fun this weekend.

First Cameron, Jordan and I went to see High School Musical 3 in the movies Friday night. It was a heck of a production and we all had fun. Even Jordan was singing along and actually seemed to follow the story line a bit. She didn't get too antsy and no one seemed to mind that she would talk to me from time to time. (thank goodness)

Even though we stayed up late for our big movie night, we all got up early to ride in Jordan's school float for our homecoming parade. It was a massive parade. HUGE event. We rode in a float close enough in the front for us to be able to watch some of the parade from the sidelines as well. Jordan loved the bands almost as much as grabbing the candy people threw at us. I captured a moment when she started dancing to a band:

(if you can't see it, click here)

She kills me.

After the parade, we regrouped and got to spend time with good friends for lunch only to return to campus to walk around the journalism school and go tailgating. Jordan got to attend her first tailgate. She was all about cheering with the grown ups. Very sweet stuff.

The game went pretty well except we were all a bit cold (hooray for big blankets to keep us warm). Jordan had her moments, but on the whole she and her brother were awesome.

After sleeping in this morning, I took the kids on a big hike. It was a PERFECT fall day and we spent an hour and a half hiking, picnicing and taking pictures. I took some awesome shots of Jordan and Cam. It was a ton of fun and we were kind of tired. But was the weekend over? Nope. We had a costume party in our neighborhood that I couldn't pass up. So we got to dress the kids up and hang out with the neighbors. It was breezy outside, but a great time to let the kids run around and be silly in character. Jordan is a butterfly princess this year and she just OOOZES princess. She was so dang proud to be a pretty princess. I just loved how proud she was walking around in her pretty outfit. The pretty outfit pictures will arrive tomorrow. This week is going to be crazy... So I'll do my best to keep everyone up to day. I actually had a really great opportunity to learn a bit about prosthetics as I prepare for our big trip to Chicago next week. I can't believe it's next week. Anyway, I hope to take a few moments to document my thoughts leading to our big trip. I just have to catch up on a little sleep and work!


Dance class experience

It was open house at Jordan's dance class yesterday... Here's a quick little peek:


Special Exposure Wednesday

I'm so proud of how big Jordan is getting... She's decided she will only swing on her brother's swing. And what's even cooler - she let him push her a little over the weekend. She's been so skittish about swings, I was really excited to watch this little moment!
5 Minutes for Special Needs


What a day

Miss Jordan is so big... And if you look at this picture, you'll agree. She asked to go outside and swing on the swing. Look at the pride and comfort she has on the swing. It was so cool to watch. She doesn't know how to pump her legs, but she could hang on and not lose balance while swinging back and forth. It wasn't too long when she wouldn't ride a swing or if she did, she had to do it in a baby swing. Very exciting.

Speaking of exciting... Did you notice all of the Linens and Things stores are shuttting down? Well, I took Jordan out to see what's going on at our local store and we officially found her new bedroom look. It's beautiful and Jordan officially calls it her "princess bed." It took her awhile getting to bed because she was so darn excited. When I left her to sleep last night, she kept saying: "I'm a princess!" Very cute.


Pumpkin patch!!

Jordan had a great time on her very first field trip with her school. She and her friends were SO excited in the process of getting there that by the time the crowd made it to the farm, they were all exhausted!

I think the main excitement was just the fact they got out and about. It was a little chilly and Jordan had to wear tights -- the first time she's worn tights in almost a year. She kept asking me to take off her socks... They were on too high. Hopefully she'll get over that since she owns a ton of tights (she doesn't know that but she does).

Jordan had occupational therapy on Thursday and Friday. Her therapist and I are pretty excited about the positive attitude Jordan has with her prosthetic these days. It doesn't do everything we want it to do... but she was using it to turn pages of a book and play with play-dough this week. That's really cool to see her "getting it." I've noticed that I've been Jordan's "hold this stuff" person. If she wants to hold more than one thing, she just hands one of those things to me. I don't think about it. Until recently. I realized I'm her extra hand... So I'm working on making sure she has little bags around the house so she can throw extra stuff in there and carry them around. Thank you Target for those little one dollar Hello Kitty canvas bags! Jordan thinks she's super cool with the bag and is starting to remember to use it. It's all about coming up with solutions!


Troy Farnsworth needs to be my friend

All of my neighbors were talking about a kid who was on The Today Show yesterday morning... He lost his arm to an alligator this past summer and he's been given the latest technology by Hanger Prosthetics. You should click here and watch.

This kid is awesome and clearly I need to get to know Hangar's Troy Farnsworth who is the director of the company's National Upper Extremity Program. I haven't found his email yet, but I clearly need to see if he'd like to work with a younger, just as positive and active patient. I'm excited to see what we can do with Scheck and Siress in Chicago next month, but it can't hurt to see if Hanger wants to play with Jordan. I think Casey Edwards is proof that working with younger prosthetic users can really help push technology forward! We worked with our local Hanger prosthetics when Jordan was much younger and we weren't able to build anything that was helpful other than go to a lot of appointments and get her worked up and upset. It would be wonderful if Hanger was looking to improve its ability to work with children and really find successful solutions. Kids deserve successful tools just like adults!

Jordan has taken to her current prosthetic really well lately. It doesn't work properly, but she wants to use it. I can't wait to see her working with a tool that works with her instead of against her!


Rediscovering Motionbox

I went back to my old video storage site, Motionbox and I was happy to see its improvements. So here's a bit of video from a couple of weeks ago with Jordan showing some football spirit.


Sweet day

There are many times when I feel very lucky to live where I live. Today was one of those days. First, we woke up early to go to church to see Cameron perform in the children's choir. It's the older group of kids and they sang with the adults. Jordan was excited to see her brother up there singing. Afterwards it was so nice to say hello to many people and just smile and feel welcomed around a lot of people. Then we ran to breakfast at a local coffee shop that serves wonderful biscuits and gravy... It's not a chain, just a local and warm feeling place. It felt good to be there.

After a good Jordan nap, she and Cameron hopped into the car with me to go to a nearby park. It's the kind of park that just has a lot of running space and trees. There was a fundraiser underway that was a word of mouth kind of event. A local photographer (and the best friend of my neighbor) passed away earlier this summer and she left a big hole in many hearts - especially her husband and two kids. So a group of her friends and photographers got together to hold an open family photography event. I and many other families got a chance to get a casual family portrait for no sitting fee. Profits of any photo prints will go towards Sarah's pet project: POYi (also a program that is part of RJI/Missouri School of Journalism) I look forward to seeing if there are a couple of shots of the kids and I. Beyond the picture part, we got to hang out with the kids' favorite friends who happen to live up the street from us. Jordan is friends with their twin girls (4 months younger than Jordan) and Cam is friends with their son who is in Kindergarten. It was fun and sweet. Both kids ran around, ate food and enjoyed crafts. Jordan also grooved with folk music players (thus the groovin' picture).

There was such a cool feeling of community and friendship. I met people I didn't know. I met people who go to Jordan's school who know Jordan but didn't know me. (that happens often) It was just a great feeling.


Feeling a bit stressed

I have a lot going on right now... And I don't feel like I'm ready for any of it. I'm leading a huge project for election night. Jordan and I go to Chicago the next day to build a new proshtetic and a few days after we get home I'm headed to Shanghai to conduct training on new media... Although I don't know specifically what the media group wants me to train. Thanksgiving is right after that. Chirstmas comes roaring after that.

I barely have time to do my laundry.

I'm stressed about expenses.

Jordan is so happy. Cameron is happy. I just want to go outside, hike around with the kids and take naps when I want to.

I need a breather. There's no time for a breather.

So what did I do today? I bought the final gift (I'm pretty sure final) I'm going to get Jordan: A new dance outfit. I'm thrilled with her love of dance and her current dance outfit was giving her a wedgie as she danced in class today!! I figured that out when another parent said: Oh! Is Jordan potty trained? I said yes and she told me she could tell because Jordan was showing off her rear in all its glory! HA!

***Another tiny thing I just realized - I'll be in China when Santa first comes to our local mall. I have ALWAYS taken the kids to the breakfast with Santa event. I'm going to miss it this year! WAH!***


Vacation memory scrapbook style

I took some time off from life this weekend and had fun putting together a summer vacation scrapbook. Check it out:


The little things just stun me

I've noticed some tiny but amazing things about Jordan lately. First, she's certain she can do anything... And I mean ANYTHING. Most of the time she's right. She can put her pants on and off all by herself. She can take off all of her own clothes. She climbs stairs of any size. She can even get down off the front stoop of our house which is just a little too high for anyone to use. She can get down these days without tumbling. I'm not sure exactly when she mastered that skill. I just noticed it.

That's just one of many little things that show me how she's making huge changes in her physical surroundings. I'm so darn proud and amazed by it all.

This weekend we stayed up late and took naps late to enjoy a fun music festival in town. To cap it off for the kids, they got to meet and listen to Farmer Jason. I knew him as Jason of Jason and the Scorchers. But now he's more popular as a children's singer. We had fun dancing and laughing and sweating in the early Fall sun.

Here's a moment when she started dancing:

Dancing to Farmer Jason from NerdyMom on Vimeo.


Getting ready!!!

I know it's silly to put the kids in their costumes already... But they arrived in the mail yesterday and I let them try them on. They are both SO excited. Cameron is going to be Anakin Skywalker and Jordan is a butterfly princess. I got them both to pose in character. Too freaking funny.

I also took Jordan to the local cheap haircut place to get a trim. I wanted to take her back to the girlygirl kid hair place where she went this summer but the place closed down. Darn economy. You're taking away the fun stuff! Anyway, I was worried the traditional setting may not be fun enough to keep her from crying but I was SO wrong. We walked in asking for a princess haircut and Jordan walked to the chair, listened to the person cutting her hair and even had a small talk conversation. I stood there and wondered who the heck was this little person getting her hair cut. She's growing up so darn fast. The personality is huge and only growing bigger.


Growing quickly

My strong-willed child is taking her ability to communicate to a new level. She's getting pretty dominant in a rude way. Earlier this week I thought it was kind of funny when I went to check on her in the bathroom at school... And she yelled: Get out of here! I do it myself! Leave me alone!

It was rude, but I let her be. But now she's yelling at me to get out of the room when I want to watch her smooch her brother during good night time... Or when I'm too close to her as she works on putting on a pair of pants. She doesn't want help. Oy. I support her efforts to force her way into complete independence, but she's got to tone down the rude attitude. So I'm trying to figure out ways to encourage her independence but tone it down and make it more responsible and polite.

By the way - that picture is of the kids on campus with me today. For some reason they're almost figuring out how to pose together. I might actually get real pictures of the kids for the holidays if they keep this up!