Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Okay, so this isn't really "wordless", but rather less wordy than usual.

Conversations with a Kitty

I guess Ellie liked what Amelie had to say.  Ame cat seems to be giving her "the paw".

Ellie has rarely been sick and for that I am extremely thankful.  I blame Ellie's stellar immune-system on the fact she uses Sophie dog's toys as teething rings and our implementation of "the 5 second rule".

However. . . .

Chick-A-Boom has a funky rash courtesy of the coxsackie virus.  It is gross, painful, and nasty on her face, tonsils, and diaper area.  The rash is more mild on her arms and legs.  It is the same type of virus that causes hand-food-mouth disease among the infant to 5year-old population and it is a rite of childhood (as in almost all kiddos get it and hence you do not see adults walking around with it as we now have immunity).  Mamas you know what I am talking about. However, because the blistering spared her hands and feet, yet took over her arms and legs, it is just called plain old coxsackie.  Goody, I just love "atypical" presentations, especially when it is my kiddo.


Anyway, I have posted some pictures from last week since Ellie is miserable and looks miserable.  Oh and I want to cry because I cannot make it better.  WAH!


Wee!
Peek-A-Boo!

Let me just practice my stretching.


Ellie's new obsession:  TRUCKS!

Hi Ya!

Goodness, so much for being less wordy.


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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Blogging to Save Peter

Once upon a time there was a beautiful little boy named Peter.  Peter, the little sweetie that he was, had the misfortune of being born in an area of the world that did not appreciate his uniqueness, his chromosomal enhancement also known as Down syndrome.


Peter


Peter is living in an orphanage because he is considered "unworthy" of love and care. 






Then, an email was sent as a result of Are You My Mommy on "A Perfect Lily" blog back in January.  A very important email.  Julie opened the email to see a picture of the beautiful, soulful Peter.  She looked into the eyes of this special boy and knew.  She knew that she was his mommy. 


Peter

An ocean away lives Peter.  He does not know the Kehm family.  The family that has pledged to bring him home to love and care for him.  The family that refers to him as "their son".   He does not know that he is loved.  


How does this story end?  


You can help the Kehm family in their journey in bringing Peter home. . .to Texas.  Peter has medical problems that need to be addressed quickly and in the United States.  He is on borrowed time as he is facing the institution.  Video on institutions here.


Read their journey here and pray or think positive thoughts if you are not a prayer.  You can repost Peter's story to FB/Twitter.  You can blog about Peter.  Or, you can donate here.


Many of you have asked why is the International adoption of a special needs child so expensive (~$25,000-30,000) when it seems the country doesn’t want them?  Yes, it is horrible that we are essentially “buying” these sweet children from these horrible institutions, but from what I can gather, most of it is travel expenses and legal stuff (both for the United States and the other Country).  I have compiled these costs from various friends who are adopting via RR.  They vary based off of where the child is being adopted from and where the child will live.  These are just estimates.
Reece’s Rainbow Donation: $1,200 
Home study: $2,000
Passports: $250-300  Remember, you are going over seas
Documents (birth certificate, marriage certificate, etc): $100+
Health Assessment for the family: $100-150
Fees for bringing and international orphan into the USA and fingerprinting: $1,000
My understanding is that these are all paid upfront.
Flights for 2 trips to EE with both parents: $5,000-10,000 
Fees for liaison (agent working with EE, translator, dossier assembly): $8,000
1st trip (lodging, transportation, supplies for 3 weeks): $3,000
2nd trip (lodging, transportation, supplies for 2 weeks): $2,200
Visa and Medical Costs for Child: $500
Orphanage Donation: $1,000



Help Bring Peter Home: http://reecesrainbow.org/sponsorkehm








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Saturday, March 26, 2011

+15 and The Many Faces of Ellie

Below is the link for a video that Ellie is featured in.  Ellie Bear is towards the middle of the show.  The +15 campaign of Down Syndrome Research and Treatment Foundation, a non-profit organization, focuses on improving speech, memory, and learning among those with Down syndrome in hopes of enabling those, like Ellie, to live more independently and reach their fullest potential.

The photo petition below will be presented to Congress in the near future :-)

http://www.flickr.com/photos/plus15campaign/show/



Well, howdy, ya'll.  It is time for another edition of. . . . 

The Many Faces of Ellie: 

Hat Edition

The Southern Cow Girl Look:


[Cue Southern Accent] Why, hello ladies and gentlemen, I am a gently bred Texan Ellie Bear.  See my lovely dress?  See my beautiful pink hat?


The Girly-Girl Look:


The Baby Bear-Bear at 4 weeks.  For some reason she loved this hat and I am guessing it is because we laughed so hard when it was on her.  After all, the flower bow was the size of her face!  Of course now, it is near impossible to keep a hat on her.


Ellie is going for a 1920's look right here.


Hi ya!  Quick, Mama!  Get the shot because I am pulling this sucker off!


The Sports Fan:


Hi!  Look at me!  


I stole Mommy's painting hat.  Ta-Da!


Uh oh.  They broke out the camera so I better take off the hat.


The Outer Space While In a Tutu Look:


Hum.  Well, this looks like a pretty nifty hat.  The Sophie Dog seems to like it.
(yep, that is a spaghetti strainer)


Yep, it fits just perfectly.


Adios for now.


I know that I have written some very heavy-hearted posts lately.  These children are still weighing heavily on my heart.  The next post will be about dear Peter.  Some of you may remember Peter from "A Perfect Lily's" Give Away a few months ago.  A forever family for Peter stepped forward during the giveaway!

To donate to Peter: http://might2save.blogspot.com/

To donate to Alexander: http://taylorvillethree21.blogspot.com/

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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

A Tale of Two Blankets

It didn't start until she was teething.  The blankets, I mean.  Sure, we had had the little pink lovie in her crib, but she showed no interest.




Yes, I know it is shock that my daughter has a blanket.  I mean, obviously you have never seen pictures of her with it. . . 




At 1 year-old, the pink lovie became Ellie's version of the pacifier.  She shoves it into her mouth for comfort and she sleeps with it.  She. Cannot. Go. To. Bed. Without. IT.

The Bedtime Ritual

Must kiss the blankets good night.

If a child is crying, she tries to give the "magical", special blanket to the sad child.  Because, the blanket cures everything, right?

It goes with us almost everywhere.  There are 4 blankets now.  Actually five.  We received two as gifts.  Then there was "the emergency" when both blankets were dirty aka spit up on due to reflux.  Amazon.com is wonderful.  I ordered two more pink blankets and brown puppy one.

Yes, that is the brown puppy blanket in her mouth, but notice she still has the pink one.

She knows the difference.  The puppy blanket is not hers.  She shuns the puppy blanket.

Laundry.  Nothing like a fresh blanket.  She is sneaky.  I get the laundry out of the dryer.  I turn around and there is Bear-Bear sitting by a turned over laundry basket with a blanket in each hand.

Some how, we have gone from one blanket to two.  Two lovies.  My laundry time has not decreased.


Then Monday was the "Target Incident".  Ellie threw the blanket out of the cart.  Unobservant mommy did not notice until checkout.  Fortunately, the woman in the line next to me recalled seeing a pink blanket by the meat section.  Yes!  Blanket crises adverted.

When Ellie is tired, the blanket becomes her communicator.  It sounds strange, but it works for her.  She has the end in her mouth and the bear (or bunny) head "communicates".  The bear "plays", "kisses", "pushes"the buttons on her toys.




Yes, my child has a security blanket and yes, it goes with us every where.  Am I worried that it will go with her to college?  Nope.  She will eventually outgrow and right now, it keeps her happy and calm.  Like I said, the blanket has magical powers.


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I cannot believe I just wrote a whole post on a blanket.  Oh goodness.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Awareness, Prayers, and Give Away

UPDATE on Carrington: Blog specifically for this dear sweet girl found here with updates on her condition.  Showing the world just how strong she is.  http://carringtonscourage.blogspot.com/

UPDATE on Reece's Rainbow: When I write that these children do not have time.  I mean it literally.  Landon passed away today while waiting for a family. He was almost 2 years-old.








This is a really difficult post to write.  My darling Ellie Bear has been so blessed to have been born in the United States during a time where children who have designer genes are no longer shut away and hidden from the outside world.

As several of you know, I have recently become involved with Reece's Rainbow.  Many of my dear friends among my Ds community are pursuing adoption.  The adoption of beautiful, wonderful, sweet children who are deemed "unworthy" in other areas of the World.

You have all seen me post the video on mental institutions in Eastern Europe in previous posts.  Have no fear that I will show those horrors to you again.

No, I am not asking you to adopt.  I am not asking for tons of money.  I am asking for prayers. . . and well, maybe a small amount of money.

This is Ellie, she is 3 months old and weighs 11 lbs.  Do you see those rolls?  Those big chunky cheeks? Now you know why she has been nicknamed the "Chunky Chicken" by my husband.





Please read this story about Carrington.  I am warning you, the images are difficult to see.  They are REAL.  Carrington is a little girl.  A 3year-old girl.  Her forever family brought her home.  Home.  Only to go straight to the hospital.  Carrington weighs 11 lbs.

Her life is literally on the line.

Carrinton--see how they bundle her up so much.
You cannot even fathom how emaciated she is.

I am asking for prayers.  If you are not the praying type- then thoughts.  Big thoughts.  Passionate thoughts.  Thoughts and prayers for Carrington and her family.

I am asking for awareness.  Spread the word.  We cannot be all high and mighty here.  This is how things were in the United States back when my Aunt Peggy was born.  Institutions for those who are not "normal".  There has to be a change.

You can start now.  Pray for Carrington and her family.  Read her story HERE.




Alexander
He has already been moved from the orphanage to the mental institution.

Also, the Taylor family needs your help.  They need to bring Alexander home so that he can receive the love, care, and family that he needs and deserves.  The longer the wait, the more he suffers.

TIME IS OF ESSENCE!

The Taylor family is still sponsoring and iPad2 give away which I posted about last week.  Who doesn't want a chance to win the new iPad?  Only $10 for a chance to win this exciting new piece of technology.


I know that economic times are tough.  Believe me, I completely understand.   Every little bit will help bring Alexander home.

If you cannot give, then think about reposting this on FB, blogging about it, or praying.

Link to donate: http://reecesrainbow.org/sponsortaylor-2

Link to their blog & details of Give Away: http://taylorvillethree21.blogspot.com/2011/03/ipad-giveaway.html

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Saturday, March 19, 2011

3.21 Word Down Syndrome Day










3-21 or 21-3

March 21st

3 of the 21st chromosome

World Down Syndrome Day



Over 1 in 700 live births is a child born with Down syndrome.
Down syndrome occurs in all races.
It does not descriminate.
It is not a disease.
Our children do not "suffer" from Down syndrome.
They are not "afflicted" with Down syndrome.
Our children are just that. . .children first.

People with Ds live full, productive lives and are contributing members to society who are looking for inclusion.  Will you "let us in?"

Would you let me in?


Please?  I am very cute.

How about my kitty?  Will you let her in?

Please?  Have I mentioned that I am sweet, sassy, and cute?

Witness Texas history in the making! On Monday the Texas legislature will introduce a resolution in both the House of Representatives and the Senate honoring people with Down syndrome in the great state of Texas by proclaiming March 21 World Down Syndrome Day. --Gerard Jimenez DSACT Digest

Celebrate today! Celebrate World Down Syndrome Day!

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* I apologize for the poor quality of the first 2 pics.  I am not sure what happened.
**The iPad2 Give Away for Saving Alexander is still going on.  Visit http://taylorvillethree21.blogspot.com/2011/03/help.html to learn about how you can win.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

A Pure Love Give Away-Saving Alexander

It is time for another Pure Love GiveAway!   Featuring iPad2--and who doesn't need or at least want one of those?

Many of you might recall a previous post of mine and Patti Rice's about the mental institutions in Eastern Europe [EE].  Mental institutions for children ages 5 years and up like my daughter Ellie.  Children with Down syndrome.  





It may be hard to imagine, but please please try.  Imagine my dear Ellie, being born in EE and sent to an orphanage.  With no one to hold her.  No one to comfort her.  No one to sing "Ellie Bear of Mine" to her.  Then, imagine Ellie being sent to an institution at the age of five or even earlier.  Imagine Ellie contained for life in a crib.  A crib.  Left to starve.  Left to live out her days surrounded by metal bars.





That is what recently happened to Alexander.

This is Alexander.
Isn't he handsome?

He has a wonderful forever family who loves him very much.  They love him SO much that they are trying to raise funds to rescue him from the mental institution in EE and bring him home to the US.

His family is wonderful, caring, and loving.  I know this.  I know this because I know his forever mother.  She is a good woman.  A good wife.  A good mother.

It would be so wonderful to just hop on a plane, scoop him up and say that he is forever theirs, but it does not work that way.  There is paperwork, home studies, travel, medical expenses, and tons of legal red tape both in Eastern Europe and the United States.  Money is needed.  Desperately.

This is Alexander at the orphanage.  BEFORE the institution.
At the orphanage, he was allowed to play, chase a ball, and be out of bed.



Until April 17, 2011, Alexander's Forever Family, the Taylor's, are doing an iPad2 Giveaway.  For more details, please visit their website. Only a $10 donation is needed to enter the giveaway.  More entries for posting their page FB.  Please spread the word.  Rescue dear Alexander.  What if this was your child, brother, sister, niece, nephew, grandchild?

Here is also a link to Reece's Rainbow and Alexander: http://reecesrainbow.org/sponsortaylor-2
TaylorVille T-Cubed: http://taylorvillethree21.blogspot.com/2011/03/ipad-giveaway.html


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