Well, I guess it’s time for an update from our crew- I can’t remember the last time I wrote something!
Christmas was great- Joel took off two weeks and we hung out at home with the kids, mostly. A few days before Christmas, we took Ella and Seth to the mall to visit Santa-man. She was a big talker until we were the next ones in line….then she started backing out. However, after much encouragement and a nice “elf” named Veronica, she did it! Seth was totally cool about the whole thing and couldn’t understand why Ella would get so anxious about it. (He is his father, she is her mother.)
We attended the Christmas Eve service at our church and were asked to light an advent candle/read Scripture together as a family. To be honest, I wish they would have just asked me to sing a 10-minute solo. Truly, I was nervous about the whole thing up until the minute we were walking off stage. Let me set the scene: A stage well-lit with candles (fire), Joel’s full attention on reading the Bible, I’m holding sleeping Seffy on my shoulder (he’s heavy and slipping because my other free hand is….), holding Ella’s hand and talking quietly to her, reassuring her that’s she’s doing a good job and to stay quiet and still. She spots herself on the jumbo screen and snickers a little bit, but then daddy finished reading. Praise God it is over! We ran home and set out cookies/milk for Santa and reindeer food for Rudolph.
Christmas morning arrived no earlier than usual (that was our gift), so Ella girl found baby Ariel waiting for her under the tree around 8:30 that morning. We opened gifts (Ella opened ALL the gifts), dressed and left for Nanna and Pappy’s new farm out in the country. We had a great time with them for a few days, fishing, riding the tractors with Ella and just being still for a while.
The days following, Joel and I put our noses down and packed the majority of the house. With 12 days to go before closing, I’ve got lists and post-its and a continuous stream of things to remember in my head. The house is completely turned upside down and stripped down of all decor, so it all feels a bit strange. Please don’t hear this as complaining, because I am so excited about the new house! I’ve been holding my breath a bit- waiting to see how it’s all going to shake down, but so far, so good. I came to the conclusion today that I’ve been expecting something to go wrong in the whole process, but that’s been lack of faith that the Lord has it under control. Once again, the control freak in me rears her ugly head!
On New Year’s Day, Seffy turned 8 months old. Can’t we just stop time for a while? I can’t believe he’s four months shy of the big birthday. He’s doing so great and I appreciate those who keep asking about him and praying for him. He’s trying to get up on all fours and can do it for a split second before he plops back down. It’s hard to get that big ol’ tummy off the ground! In December, he got some special orthopedic pants that he wears the majority of his wake time. Most Down Syndrome kids have hypotonia, or low muscle tone, so the tendency is for them to tire quickly, develop more slowly and thus, crawl/walk later. On top of that, they are EXTREMELY flexible…Seffy is no different! The shorts help hold his legs in so they don’t get used to turning out when he’s laying down, trying to crawl, etc. (think spandex shorts with some wiggle room that are sewn together at the inseam down to the knee). They don’t bother him at all and I can tell his hips/legs are turning in a bit more and strengthening as they should be. Seth’s still such a good eater! He loves anything we feed him and can even out-eat his three year old sister!
So do you want to know the sweetest thing he’s learned? Occasionally, when Ella cries (for whatever reason) and Seth is close by, he looks at her and starts to frown. Then he looks at one of us and sticks out the bottom lip, then back at her, and again at us, back at her, back to us…..all the while working up to a big cry. It is the saddest, sweetest little cry for his sister! We just all have to hug- Ella, Seth, us- pat them both and tell them everyone is okay. And, once she’s done crying, he turns it off too. How precious! It’s so cute, that Joel and I actually want him to do it whenever she cries! If we could get it on video, I know it would win the prize on America’s Funniest Home Videos.
So, 12 days until closing on both houses. Please pray with us that all details are worked out and ready to go for closing on Jan 16th and that the move goes smoothly. Praise God for this chapter of our life we’re opening and praise Him for this wonderful home we’re leaving. Praise God that He is in control.