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He’s not allowed to eat M&Ms

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Apparently, he procured a few from his big sister.


We blame Ella

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The best pic ever?

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Loving on each other

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Video: Seth is cruising

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Seth had his first legitimate cruising day.  Great job little dude!


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Video: Where the wild things are

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Here’s a little taste of what happens at the house on a very frequent basis.

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Ella has officially hit the “why” stage. She’s asking why constantly. Pray that we have patience and answer with wisdom and grace. Why?

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Day 5 and we are still at the hospital as of Tuesday morning. I see
how the Lord is using this to work empathy in my heart toward families
who have endured days, weeks and even months with their children
receiving care. We are weary and tired. We are so ready to see our
own beds, eat our own food- hec, I'm excited about cooking. The good
news is that Seth has picked up a few new "tricks" since he's been
here- he's saying, "Ba" for ball and has started throwing the ball to
us and even following some simple commands. It's amazing how new ears
make such a difference! He's waving to anyone that we pass by or
comes into the room and can now pull up on anything. He even started drinking through a straw….big boy.

Now the technical stuff- we're waiting on "sensitivities" to come back
on his ear culture to tell us what drug will exactly kill this
infection. We are PRAYING that it is something oral that doesn't
require IV so that we can go home AND because Seth has been through 2
IVs already and stuck more than 7 times. His little veins keep
collapsing because he moves so much and his veins are so, so small. 

Here's what you can pray for today: 
-that drug sensitivies come back today and an oral antibiotic is found. 
-that we can go home. 
-wisdom for Joel and I in making decisions for his best interest in
the event that we are asked to stay another night. 
-peace for Ella- she misses her mommy SO much and is starting to
struggle a little.
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We’re Still Here….

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Seth's doctor came by this morning and we're going to be in for
another day. He's waiting on a bacterial culture taken from his ear
(during surgery) to grow and then be tested against several types of
antibiotics to hopefully find one that can be taken orally (rather
than through IV), so we can go home and knock these ear infections out
once and for all. Seffy boy pulled out the IV on his left foot this
morning, so the "Vascular Access Team" (IV specialists….) just
came and left and finally found a vein in his right foot after
pricking both hands and blowing veins in each. He was hysterical
during this process, mostly because it took 3 adults to hold him
down. He is a tough little fella and strong as an ox- he proved that
just a few minutes ago! Daddy and I were borderline hysterical
ourselves…….Here's what I need you to pray for: 

-That an antibiotic is found to kill the culture tomorrow morning so
that we can…. 
-Be released from the hospital on Monday. 
-That Seth won't pull out this IV and that it will last through the
duration of our hospital stay. 
-That Seth's ear infections will be cleared after this entire process
and that his hearing remain good. 

Jehovah Rapha is the Great Healer- and I know He cares about veins and
ears just as much as anything else.
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Doing well after surgery

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Seth made it through surgery without any problems. We'll be with him
at the hospital all weekend, however. They are giving him an IV every
8 hours with a strong antibiotic to kill the infection that has stuck
with him for over a month now.

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Pray for Seth

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We took Seth to the ENT on Monday and an ear infection in his left ear hasn’t cleared up after months of drops and treatments. (It’s a”chronic” ear infection.) So, he’s going to get a new set of tubes on Friday morning at 9am- adenoids taken out also to help with his breathing and sleep apnea- and a weekend stay at the hospital where they’re going to keep him on an IV to run strong antibiotics through his system to try to clear the ear infection once and for all.  What’s more, the ENT said, “Do me a favor and keep him out of the church nursery for a while. We’ve got to keep him well.” So! That kind of changes the way we’ll be doing things at church (guess he’ll have to learn to take notes sooner than later).

He did great on his birthday given his condition.

Many children with Down Syndrome have compromised immune systems, and we’re finding that Seth is no different. When they catch a cold or virus, it stays in their bodies longer due to smaller airways and nasal passages. That seems to be the case for Seth- and now it is settling in his nose and ears, which will ultimately affect his hearing, speech, etc. What a reminder of how intricately the Lord has knit us together!  Joel and I keep saying that it could be so much worse- it’s just a season in life and we’d rather it be his ears than something even more complicated. However, I feel anxious about putting him in the hospital for the weekend (thinking about all the germs, flu, etc), but according to the doctor, we really have no choice with the ear thing.  Please just pray with me protection over him during anesthesia and surgery- a full recovery- complete healing and restoration of hearing in both ears- rest for us while we are in the hospital for however long it will be- fun and peace for Ella girl while we’re away for a while- and peace for a nervous/weary momma. I know the Lord is in full control~ how many times do I preach that to other people? And how many times will I continue to be tested in it?  It’s just so hard some times to keep that top of mind when you are literally walking through the trial! I’m reminded of this promise the Lord revealed to me when I was pregnant with him: “And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. To Him be the power forever and ever. Amen!” ~1 Peter 5:10

I will be anxious for nothing- I will pray without ceasing- in everything, I will give thanks! Thanks for praying for us….we will keep the blog updated.

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Happy First Birthday, Seth!!

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Momma loves this little guy

Dear Seth,

We celebrated your first birthday this weekend with all of your family and a few friends.  More than just a birthday party, we celebrated your life.  You’ll never know what a blessing you are to us.  If only we’d known how good this year would be, there would have been no doubts, no fears, no worries.

I knew you were special the minute I laid eyes on you, and that was something I’d prayed and asked the Lord for.  Nobody had to say a word to me- I announced to everyone in the delivery room that I knew you were special and they all silently nodded.  My doctor said you were sent to the right parents for sure.  Everyone in the delivery room handled you like a china doll- and there wasn’t a dry eye in the room, but there were a lot of smiles too.   All your daddy could say was, “He’s a good boy.  He’s a good boy, momma.”  The doctors told us you were really strong and a healthy boy.  You had a good cry, just like Ella did when she arrived.  The next thing I said was that your name would be Seth Joel- which means chosen by God and our doctor said he could think of nothing more fitting.  Then I proclaimed the truth- “Blessed be the name of the Lord!” with tears streaming down my face and my chin quivering.

I’ll never forget the feeling I had when the nurse handed you to me, just minutes after you were born.  She told me that God had special plans for your life, and she was certainly right.  You were wrapped up so warm with a soft little hat on your head- those beautiful blue eyes of yours were wide open, taking everything in.  I held you so close and started to talk softly to you- telling you how beautiful you were and how excited we were to finally have you.  You cooed right to me- and immediately, I knew we were going to be okay.  You see, I fell in love with you in that moment….your daddy did too.  I sang to you a little bit, which you were already accustomed to and still love.  Then one by one, as we introduced you to your big sister Ella, your Mimi and Poppa, Nanna and Pappy and aunts and uncles, they fell in love with you too.

You are a special boy, Seth.  We love you just as much as we love our Ella girl- you are both our favorites.  Ella thinks you are pretty special too.  She calls you names like, “Baby Joy,” “Seffy-too-tiger” and “Wookey.”  She came to pick you up at the hospital when you were born and couldn’t wait to hold you…she still talks about that day.  She’s mommy’s big helper and she’s also your helper too, Seth.  We’ve talked about how she will always take care of you and teach you new things; sure, you may fuss at each other every now and then, but she loves you so tenderly and always will.  I can see how God made you both so differently and how you will help take care of her, too.  You help Ella to slow down her pace a little bit- she’s learning to be patient, and can’t wait for you to learn to say her name.

You’ve taught me how to love better.  I’m not afraid of things that are “different” like I used to be.  I find myself going out of my way to get in line at the grocery store with employees who are special too.  I am learning to cherish and appreciate the little things.  I am enjoying each day for what it brings more and more.  I see beauty in all kinds of faces, shapes, colors and smiles.  Your little arrival has softened me.  I am more compassionate and quicker to hold my tongue, less inclined to criticize.  I love your daddy more because you’re part of him, too.  He’s so proud of you, he could just pop sometimes.  You’re his first son, Seth…and I know that he wouldn’t trade you for all the boys in the world.

I love your smile and the way your eyes turn into little rainbows when you get excited to see me enter the room.  I love to hear you say, “Mama.”  I love how you get so tickled when we play “kissie-kissie” and I loved how you wave your arms when you get so excited about anything we’re doing together.  I love how you wrap your arms around my neck as tightly as possible and squeeze me with an “Mmmmmm” whenever we hug each other.  I loved it the first time you crawled, slowly but steadily, right into my lap because you just wanted to be with me.  I love that you need me because, Seth, I need you too.

Seth Joel- chosen by Jehovah God.  You are a joy and a love to all who know you.  I am so proud of you.

I’ll love you forever- I’ll like you for always- as long as I’m living, my baby you’ll be.

Love, Mommy

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