Monday, May 21, 2012

Jacey at Ability Camp - Week 5

Well week 5 was a busy one. We started off having the whole "stay for another session" incident. We are excited for all aspects of this experience, however, a little homesick and mommy misses her bed. Jacey just kept trucking away this week in sessions and her hyperbaric dives, she also had a week full of potty stickers. She has consistently pooped every day in the morning in class or right before class and has had her first of 2 three sticker days... WAHOO Jacey "I do it in the potty" Bird!!! She seems quite proud of herself and more grown up, she gets excited when I ask her to do things or help with things like lifting her leg, or reaching with her arm as I would have just done both of those things for her before. I am just proud of her and really enjoying watching her change and morph into her big girl self. (Although secretly I enjoy giving her the extra cuddles and carrying her once in a while...not all the time though sheesh my back has already thanked me for the change)We also have experienced the no cry while walking into class on Thursday and Friday of this week. It only took 5 weeks for her to mellow out enough to walk into class without screaming her face off. Proud!! I was so excited when she looked back and smiled at me while she walked in with her Conductor. She is getting it, and I am interested to see what tomorrow brings for the infamous "walk in". We had our Graduation on Thursday after class with a big celebration and our Conductor made homemade Hungarian Goulash and cake. It was so tasty and interesting to watch the little people eat it. The Graduation was cool, they handed out a medal with their name and session engraved on it and also a folder of all her artwork and potty sticker charts, which I haven't decided if I will gold crust them or blow them up to put on her wall as a "pick me up" hehe. All of the girls wore their Ability Camp shirts and black pants and they looked too cute while the only gent wore jeans and a fancy button up shirt it was just too cute!!! We cleaned up and packed for the weekend and took off around noon on Friday for Niagara Falls. It was such a fun weekend as a family!! Jacey really enjoyed Marineland and mostly the rides, she was smiling and laughing on them and also watching the dolphin show was cool. We were not huge fans of the freakin hotness or the fact that the poor deer looked so hot that they were dead. There is a pic of Jacey and I watching one to see if it is breathing, and then when it did a smile pic after. Whewph!! Jon was in top form again as he slathered on the sunscreen but still burnt THE SIDE OF HIS FOOT....the only place without sunscreen. Seriously?!?! That was the first day followed by some Hard Rock Cafe and Hershey Chocolate shop and swimming in the pool to cool off. The next day we walked down to the Falls and did the Maid of the Mist. Jacey got soaked but rocked it and was smiling after, her biggest concern was the plastic poncho's. She hated them more than anything else. We then hit up the Rainforest Cafe, which Jacey liked as well. We contemplated some more sights but it was hot, Jacey was tired and we needed to get to Toronto to check in our rental and re-new and head to the hotel at the airport. We stayed right at the airport and ate a delicious meal there and went swimming again. Daddy left really early Monday morning here and Jacey and I headed back just in time to make our afternoon dive. It was such a fun weekend and a real nice break before another busy 5 weeks. Can't wait for Jenny and Gramma Hudkins to get here next week. Counting down the days. Love y'all!! - Alyson and Jacey

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Jacey Ability Camp - Week Four

Well, this is a bit of a late post as things have been "going down" since Sunday. Jacey and I are staying at Ability Camp for another 5 week session!!! The Director approached us and invited us to stay longer since Jacey was sick for the first week and we missed some time. Jon and I really had to make some decisions whether it would be good for our family or what. We decided that we were gonna make it happen! Soooo here is the low down. Jon, Jacey and I are going to head to Niagara Falls this weekend for 3 days of relaxation and family time before our 5 week break from each other. During our oh my heck were staying for 10 weeks total time, my sister Jenny and my Gramma Hudkins are coming together for a week and then Gramma will stay for another week with me and then either my mom or other sis Leslie will come for a bit at the end to help me head home with Jacey. Whewph, it is quite the set up and I am excited, nervous, tired, but really pumped for Jacey!!! Well now that the whole oh my heck 10 weeks total time away is out of the way. Back to our week. Jacey is doing really great. We are a potty machine, Jacey has consistently pooped almost every morning this week and also for my mother's day present did a poop and 2 pee's...count em 2! She rocks and I am seeing a light at the end of the diaper tunnel. This week was the start of her first 2 sticker days and I was just so proud of her and she is so proud of herself as well. Jacey is also consistently using her walker to walk to and from most activities, with minimal assistance around her hips. Jacey is sitting independantly on her stool and her lunch chair and she is helping feed herself her meals. She is really separating herself from me more and doing things for herself. This is huge and I am soooo excited for myself and the break on my back and arms...and for Jacey of course too!! hehe Our time outs have slowly decreased to almost nothing, which has made for a nicer work out and mommy feeling better about things. She is just blossoming and amazing and you can tell how proud of herself she is. In other big news last week.....DADDY IS HERE!!! Jacey was a little apprehensive when she first saw him but it sure didn't take her long to be all over him. She missed him and was so happy that he was here. BUT, not as happy as mommy was to have him here. Jon has been a great support and help with taking over some of her hyperbaric dives and also being a participant in her sessions. We took some time together for our Anniversary (May 11) and toured around some of the tiny, beautiful towns in the area. We sampled some delicious cheese, and bought some cute things for our family members. This weekend our whole camp group cooked a large mother's day dinner. It was sure enjoyed by everyone and such a great bonding experience. This is a shorter post because it is already into the last week and I will be letting y'all know about our future here. So excited and miss you all. Know that we are doing well and Jacey is doing amazing things here. So blessed to be able to do it again with family's awesome support. Thanks - A

Monday, May 7, 2012

Jacey's Ability Camp - Week Three

Oh week were my Everest!!!! This week or "hump week" as I liked to call it has now officially ended, Thanks Goodness! It began a little rough and was challenging but finished strong and surprisingly upbeat. My mom left on Sunday, and I was a little lost being by myself. I felt like a weenie as there are 2 other moms here who only had help for the first and last week and were rockin' it. (My justification was that they had been here before, so I could be a baby as it was my first time...right?) Anyways I got into the habit of things and developed a routine and schedule for myself, laundry, vacuuiming, washing down EVERYTHING and sleeping in a bit even. The rest of the time was just Jacey and I, we really worked on developing our relationship. She wanted to develop it in my arms, on my lap, hanging onto my pants and or not being more than 2 feet away from each other. I would have liked to have developed it from more of a distance hehe. However, that being said, by the end of the week she was way less clingy and even ventured off a few times with the other kids into the play room while I did a few meals or sat "close" to another adult while I tidied things up. Jacey had a rough start to the session week. She was very upset Monday to Friday when I would drop her off and even began crying whenever we went to the kitchen, which is attached to the class. I think she thought that anytime we went there she had to go to class. Poor kid! She endured time outs on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday but didn't have any on Thursday or Friday. (Halle-friggin-lujah) Also we had a pee and a poop in the potty this week....very big deal, quite excited, thought about baking her a brown cake. =) Jacey was still quite "independant" this week and arching off alot of things, but she started really working hard in class and not being as upset or "vocal" as they put it. Jacey had more success in class with her being less upset, it was mostly just during drop off and a few program portions that she didn't like instead of screaming for 4 HOURS STRAIGHT!! (Remember from last week, the capital letters, and sad mommy?) She was participating and doing her activities and not falling asleep, which I think means morning naps cut out permanently. Jacey was sitting nicely at lunch and helping me feed herself and not crying when I would go get more napkins like last week. WHEWPH! Things are starting to turn around for this little lady. She is also sitting way longer independantly and can slide herself around four edges of a stool and transfer toys to each hand and throw them in a basket and side step through a ladder and lift her legs and step high into a high ladder. She is really changing and has more stamina in her walker which I need to be a little bit better at making her use more throughout the day. We are more successful on the potty, although we're still not a big fan of sitting on it. Jacey is just killing it!! Proud Mama!! As for me and my mental health. I know some family members were concerned as my sparkling, winsome personality wasn't showing through as it usually is. I am back in the game! I feel way better about our situation, more on top of my schedule, less concerned about Jacey's scream fests and clingyness (as they have dissipated some) and just more myself. I gotta say, the first three days I was just tired, crabby, sick of the clingyness, and really convincing myself that this was great. But by the end of the week, I didn't have to convince too hard. Also having Mr. Bird coming to join me in two sleeps helps as well. This weekend was great, she went to sit with other people and didn't holler. I was concerned as to when to run and shower because she is kind of a light sleeper in the morning and people are noisy (grrr and slam doors...for the love people) and there have been a few times she is up before me. So morning was out and then we are together for the rest of the day, but we made friends...with a Newfie Nanny!!! She is here with her husband who is in the adult stroke program and while he is in Hyperbarics on the weekend she came to our room and hung with the Bird girl so I could run and shower. It was heavenly and Jacey didn't even wig out...I think the accent is comforting. hehe Last night was a bit challenging as Jacey was up from 12-4...I know right?!?! And I had a really hard time being nice to her from about 2:30 on, but she survived and I went back to bed after dropping her off at class. It made for a long day, but Jacey was a champ in class and had hardly any upset times they said except for drop off. She also did another pee today, Woot Woot for the potty stickers!! Well guys, there is less than 2 weeks left. I am so glad Jon is coming soon and we can trade off duties and have some support. Jacey will be so excited to see him and he will be shocked at her differences. She is such a big girl now, there is no more baby girl around here. Very independant, very determined and very capable as it turns out. We just need to take a step or two back and let her try it all out. It is a new world for this kid and she is excited to get into it! I tear up a bit writing that as I think about her future more than I ever did before, I was a live each day kinda person because who knows about the future and I didn't know how to handle it yet. But I see such potential in her and a real drive and I know that this kid has places to go and things to do. I love her so much and am so grateful she is mine and I get to be the one to teach her, and help her develop. What a sweet, sweet choice spirit she is. Thanks for all the love and support! We love and miss y'all! - A