"I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. And because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do the something that I can do. What I can do, I should do. And what I should do, by the grace of God, I will do." -Edward Everett Hale

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Poking and Prodding

To say that Easton has been put through the wringer these past few months is an understatement. 

First he endured a very uncomfortable urodynmics test. 

Then he went through a scary MRI. Did I mention it was a non-sedated MRI?

He did both of these with a level of calmness that is really unheard of in a four-year-old. Actually, I'm not sure any-year-old could have done better. 

Easton had these tests as a precautionary measure. He was born with a tumor, which was removed in China. Often, the tumor can grow back or cause nerve damage which may interfere with kidney and bladder function. 

The best news is that everything was normal. His surgery in China was outstanding and that's a huge blessing because you just never know. 

Unfortunately that wasn't the end of the poking and prodding. For quite some time, Easton has been in a losing battle with eczema. We finally waved the white flag and scheduled allergy testing. 

The results from this test were not so normal and made us card carrying members of the food allergy club. 

Easton is allergic to EGGS and SOY. 

At first I was hit hard with the egg news. No cakes, no cookies, no waffles, and well, no eggs!

But soy. 

It is in everything. And to make things even more difficult, we have to avoid soybean oil as well. 

However, on an average day, when he's with me, it's not a huge deal. He's not a picky eater and it's a good reminder to eat real food. 

But problems arise when he's not with me and is exposed to restaurant food, processed food, and endless snack food. 

The easy-going personality that came in handy during the medical tests doesn't fit so well here. Easton has not a care in the world, and doesn't give much thought to instructions and warnings. Without a doubt, if someone hands him a cupcake, he's gonna eat it. 

Is it life-threatening? No. 

But it is a real thing. After a couple of weeks on a strict diet, his skin is clear. It's really amazing. He has some scarring and discoloration from all his scratching but his skin is smooth and he doesn't itch. 

I was hoping Easton would get a break from the doctor appointments after this. Before his allergy test, I told him they may stick needles in his back. Turns out they didn't use needles. However, I found out later that he thought I said they would be putting noodles on his back. 

Michael thought he was joking. 

I'm not so sure. 

Up next, hearing test?

Saturday, August 22, 2015

My Favorite Five Year Old

We managed to stretch out Lila's birthday celebration over a few days, and that's exactly how we like it. 

Friday was a day off of school, so that meant cupcakes for the class on Thursday. 

Side note: The extent that Lila loves school is unbelievable. I thought she loved preschool. But Kindergarten. Completely off the charts. 

So we joined Lila for lunch and she was allowed to choose a friend to sit with us at the VIP table. She had been mentioning this friend a lot, which is huge for Lila, so I was thrilled to meet her. 

I always love going to school and seeing the kids. From the boy who absolutely refused the cupcake because he had a Hershey kiss in his lunch box, one Hershey kiss (your discipline will take you places, son), to the boy who asked to try a chocolate one since he ate his vanilla one too quickly, (it never hurts to ask, but no). It takes all types. 

And, of course, Lila was loving it...

Lila did not consider her day off on Friday a gift, but we made the best of it. It was a Lila's Favorite Food Friday in honor of her big day. 

And today was THE day, a perfect day to turn FIVE...

Some important family members came to town, and along with this gang...

And this guy...

We called it a party. 

Happy Birthday, Lila! You've been with us more birthdays than without, and we're looking forward to many more to come. 

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Seven Months

Today Declan celebrated seven months in one of his favorite places...The outdoors!

These days when he's not creeping, crawling backwards, or doing his pivot move...He's pulling up!

And mighty proud of himself about all of it. 

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Another First Day

Today began the new school year at Lexington Chinese School. 

And apparently a very sunny one...

Easton was so jealous of Lila last year because she got to go. 

Lila was so jealous of Easton last year because he didn't get to go. 

Maybe they'll both be happy now. 

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Sending the Girls to School

Six A.M. came very early this morning for some of us. But there were two little girls who weren't the least bit fazed by this wake up call. What could be more exciting than the first day of Kindergarten and 1st grade? And the added intrigue of a new school made for a whole new level of eagerness. 

Piper for 1st grade...

Lila for Kindergarten...

Levi, however, was not so enthused...

But he soon cheered up...

Because after we got Lila settled in...

And Piper kicked us out of her classroom...

We were on our way to the Boo Hoo Breakfast for Kindergarten families...

Levi has been anticipating this since last year's breakfast. At open house last week, he whispered, "Where are the doughnuts?"

In addition to his excitement over breakfast pastries, Levi has a new outlook on school. He is now officially excited about his own journey to Kindergarten next year. This has not been the case up to this point. He was determined to 'do homeschool'. 

And Declan...

The good news for him is that we won't be getting up quite so early tomorrow. We just needed to get a head start today with all the frenzy of the first day. 

So how was it?

Lila was ecstatic when she got home. Literally non-stop talking for two hours. 

Piper played it a little more cool, but I think she wants to go back. 

And it's a good thing, because as Lila said this evening, "Tomorrow is the next day of school."

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Best Day O. Fun Ever

Today is the final day of summer break. And just like that, school is upon us. 

This called for a Day O. Fun, which began at Chuck E. Cheese...

Next, we continued our 'Best Day Ever' at the discount theater to watch the movie 'Home'...

Afternoon movie=afternoon nap for Declan. I can truly pack this baby anywhere, but our time is growing short as he is becoming mobile...

I kept each destination a surprise, so I'm not sure everyone was quite prepared for it. As the movie was starting, Levi leaned over and asked when 'Big Hero Six' was going to come on. 

Wrong movie, buddy. 

And then as we left the theater they asked, "Where's the next surprise place?"


Our home, that is. 

Thursday, August 6, 2015

8:00 Get-Up

Around 8:00 this morning I was lounging around in bed with these two...

While a voice in the back of my mind was whispering, "Only six more days..."


I am not at all looking forward to it. This is shocking even to me. There are several reasons for this. The first one being our 8:00 get-up. Don't think for a minute that all of us are actually sleeping that whole time, but it's nice not to set an alarm clock. The older kids have been great about staying in bed a little longer than usual while Declan and I take a morning nap. 

But laziness aside, this summer has been downright enjoyable. Truly the best one of the past few years. For the most part, everyone is well adjusted and learned to go with the flow, whether it's a day at the pool or a day in pajamas. 

But all good things must come to an end. 

We started the journey back to school tonight with orientation. 

It was chaotic and unfamiliar. I was homesick for our old school. But I know two girls who can't wait to get back in the groove. 

A Kindergartner...

And a 1st grader...

(Who, by the way, did not want her picture taken, but was all about it this morning in bed.)