In our marathon of spring birthdays, Silas is next. For two weeks Silas and Eden are the same age. But for most of the year, Maggie and Silas are the same. This birthday caught Silas up to Maggie and now I have two ten year olds in the house!
Doesn't everybody have their own resident artist? Ahhhh, be jealous. I am so spoiled by my girl, in so many ways. She always makes the kids' birthday cakes magical. Silas asked for an Orange Crush birthday cake, his favorite drink. And of course Hannah could do it.
Who likes orange soda? Silas likes orange soda! Is it true?? Yes it's true! I do, I do, I do!
The traditional photo with fingers up. Ten fingers! Next year we start on toes!
Star Wars Lego from Isaac.
This was cute. When Hannah was wrapping her present for Si, Kiki went to her room and got one of her puppies and wanted to wrap it up too. Hannah let her wrap it, and put it with the other gifts. Then when he opened it, look how delighted she was!
I'm thinking Tony Orlando and Dawn.
The boy doesn't seem to mind the loving from his sisters. They are such a sweet team. A couple moms this week were asking me, since I have so many kids, how do I handle conflicts between them. I stopped to think, and I had to admit, we just really don't have very many conflicts between them. I mean, now and then there are, but day to day, they really like each other. I don't know what to attribute that to exactly. I think it helps that they are close in age, but they truly love each other and miss each other when they are separated.
Maggie and Silas have been wanting pocket knives for a long time. I put this in the category of the "Red Ryder BB gun with a compass in the stock and this thing which tells time." I wasn't a big fan of the idea, but Art's a pocket knife guy, and he got one for each of them. Then he sat them down to give them a lesson in knife safety, and all the rules about having a knife. The funny part was when he was showing Maggie, "Don't ever close your knife like this," then unintentionally sliced the knife right into the palm of his hand. Good visual, Dad!
Laz loving on Lechay, Maggie's bunny.
The man with the million dollar smile.
Beautiful spring day, and popsicles.
Isn't she beautiful? She has really grown up into her face. She has the prettiest eyes, and looong flashlashes (that's what my kids call eyelashes). Such a dolly girl she is. I just love her.
A typical day in our kitchen.
So Lazarus finally got his AFO's. These are ankle braces that force his foot into a flexed position. For the first time in his life, these ankle muscles are being forced into the right position so that he can learn to walk. (See the picture above with him in the kitchen and you can see the normal position of his feet.) When they were first put on, he protested a little, but then he protested a lot. The first day he only wore them a couple hours, but protested the whole time. And... well it's gone down hill from there! The above picture is a rare moment when he is not trying to pull them off.
And this is him the rest of the time. Sigh... He has gone to physical therapy one time with them on, and shrieked and fought his therapist the whole time. The good part is, when he has them on, he can stand, and he can take some steps too. He is exceptionally strong, and the therapist and I agree that if he could just redirect that strength into cooperating with the braces, he'd be walking in no time. But so far, he cannot connect the good of it to the discomfort. The therapist checked everything over, and assured me that not only is not feeling any pain, he likely is not even that uncomfortable. He just doesn't like it. Laz is quite strong willed, and will throw a similar explosive tantrum for something as little as putting a bandaid on him, or not getting enough ketchup on his plate. These things take time. He has only been with us three months.
But in the meantime, this gives new meaning to the term, "child abuse". We are the ones being abused by the child! Here is Hannah's leg after being bitten by Laz, and this was a bite when she was wearing pants! If she'd been wearing shorts, it would have drawn blood. I have my own display of bruises from being kicked and hit and bitten, and dozens of little bruises on my arms from being pinched. I've also lost a couple of handfuls of hair. Well, nobody said it would be easy. We are determined to follow the doctor and physical therapist's orders and not give in. In a year, when he's walking around, he'll thank us. Or maybe he won't, but either way, it's the right thing to do. Pray for me to survive it though!
Canaan has been very busy with clinicals every day and work in the evening. He leaves before anyone is up in the morning, and gets home after the kids are in bed at night. They miss him!! But when he is home, he always makes time to play with them. He truly loves them. They are playing Beyblades here.
Canaan having a burping contest with the kids. What are big brothers for?
Eden was the winner.
And see how her face is improving? Not quite back to normal, but such an improvement!
She went for her pre-op this week, and will be having some more surgery in May. It will be much less invasive, and should have only one night in the hospital. Meanwhile, her graft on her palate was successful, and for the first time in her life, she has had her palate closed.
Eden and Maggie have old phones that Art got from work years ago. They don't have any service, but they can still play games on them, and take pictures and videos. They love doing this.
And here they are playing with the collection of roley poleys they collected outside. They made a whole nest for them. Eden says there are too many to count. She just calls them the "Holy Moly Tribe". She takes them out and plays with them. There is one crawling on her finger here.
Here is another sample of how spoiled I am with Hannah. She helps me with so many things, including homeschooling. I don't ask her to do these things; she just does them. She read The Hobbit to the kids earlier this year, and they loved it. When she reads, she paraphrases so they will understand, and stops to explain things that are difficult, and asks them questions to make sure they are following it. So when the movie came out on video, they really wanted to see it. But, if you've seen it you know that it is pretty intense. The scary guys in it are so well done, I was afraid it would be too much for them. But Hannah really believes in the kids hearing good literature, and getting excited about stories like this. She is the one who watched the Narnia movies with them, stopping at parts that were scary, fast forwarding and explaining. They love that movie now. So, she asked to do that with the Hobbit, and we said okay. They loved it. Especially Silas. He even memorized the whole Misty Mountain song! Then they were all interested in seeing the Lord of the Rings. I thought that would be too hard for them and too scary as well. But Hannah decided to tackle it. Her idea was to read them the book first, and explain everything. Each day, after she read some chapters, she had papers for them where they each took an assigned part of the story and wrote it in their own words and drew a picture. When the book was done, they had several pages covering the whole book. Only then were they allowed to watch the movie with her. This coincided with Silas's birthday, so after his birthday cake and presents, they all watched the movie together. They absolutely loved it. Thank you Hannah!
And to end up, we have a cardinal nest in our back yard. We've been watching it and finally heard the little peep peeps of a baby. So beautiful. Welcome Spring!!