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Do you shop at Amazon.com or know someone who does? Click on the link below, or any Amazon link in this blog, to help us earn Amazon Credit in order to buy therapy equipment! Anything you order off Amazon counts! Please bookmark Madi, Ramya and Deena's link and pass it on... every order helps! http://www.amazon.com/?_encoding=UTF8&tag=missmadi-20

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Support HopeKids and Help Bring Hope Today!

HopeKids is an amazing organization for kiddos with serious medical needs and their families.  They offer family events, visit children in the hospital, check in with families, send encouraging letters and notes to their kids and families, send regular e-mails that are uplifting, and really go above and beyond to bring hope and love each of their families.

For so many families it's easy to get caught up in the appointments, the hospital stays, the therapies, the insurance battles, and all the "extras".  Sometimes life is crazy and you simply don't have time to plan a fun event for your family.  Other times, medical bills are piling up and you don't have the extra money to get out and do something fun.  The fact that HopeKids provides amazing events free of charge to it's members is HUGE and really does make such a big difference in so many lives.



HopeKids has a new program called Hope 365 where you can sponsor a Hope Kid for a year.  This provides that child and their family with FREE events to lift up their spirits.

In addition to helping provide Hope to these families, you can also help them reach their goal of 50 new families.  Once they reach that goal, they will be given a matching grant of $18,000!!   To receive the entire $18,000 matching grant they need to acquire 50 new monthly donors by December 15th.  Currently they have 23 friends of HopeKids who have stepped up to support us in this way, which is AMAZING!  They need 27 more new friends with just over 3 weeks to go to reach their goal.  Signing up is simple. Go to www.hopekids.org/hope365.

We are proud to have two HopeKids, and are also proud to be able to help support the work that HopeKids is doing.

Hope truly is a powerful medicine!  I hope you will consider sponsoring HopeKids today!


Here are a few pictures of our recent HopeKids event at Bumblebee Ranch




 

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Our North Pole Experience

This weekend we went up to my parent's cabin in Flagstaff to go to the North Pole Experience.  It was a lot of fun and we LOVED the cooler weather!

I had a bit of a mommy fail because I thought I was purchasing tickets to The Polar Express through Livingsocial, but couldn't figure out why they were so inexpensive.  We drove to Williams, unloaded, and then realized we were in the wrong place!  Oops!  We rushed back to Flagstaff but I knew we would be about 10 minutes late.  I tried to call The North Pole Experience multiple times, but had to leave a message.  I also messaged them on facebook and e-mailed them, but didn't hear back.  I finally got a call from a really sweet girl who realized that we had reserved a spot for two wheelchairs and she hadn't seen us check in yet.  She got us on a bus, even though we were late, and took such good care of us.  She was amazing!  I am so very thankful for her!

The kiddos had a blast and loved seeing Santa.  Though it wasn't what I had pictured our day looking like, the kids really had fun and I was glad we went.  Next year I will be making sure I get the right tickets though :).  Here are a few pictures from our fun....

















 

Two Great Updates From the Pediatrician Today

Monday we had an appointment with our pediatrician for Madi's 6 year well check and Ramya's 3 month weight check.  We got some double good news!  First off, I told Dr. Nemivant that Madi reacts very strongly to mosquito bites and that I was nervous about what may happen if she got a bee sting.  All 3 kiddos also have food allergies, and Ramya's are both IgG and IgE, so I also worry about a more serious reaction if she got ahold of something she shouldn't have.  I asked if he felt it would be a good idea to carry around an EpiPen, and he agreed it was a good idea, so we are now proud owners of two EpiPens.  I know that seems like a silly thing to get excited over, but it's just a little more peace of mind for me;  something that I really appreciate!


 
 
The second bit of good news is that Ramya has officially gained enough weight to be in a booster seat.  She is now about 42 pounds!  Her eating hasn't improved at all, unfortunately, so we are still working on trying to enjoy eating.  She loves the food she eats, she just doesn't love eating more than a few bites of it.  The doctor said she's on a good curve now (well, a low curve, but she's following her own curve :)), so to keep doing what we are doing, which is supplementing with a high-fat milk daily.  I make her a mix of raw milk, vanilla creamer (so it tastes extra yummy) and heavy whipping cream.  We are also working on adding some bottle feeding to our rocking routine.  Our attachment therapist feels that going back to the very start of food for her may help her overcome her dislike for eating.  I'm not sure if it will help or not, but I will try anything that might!  She did ask for paneer today, and it wasn't at a meal time.  She only ate 2 bites, but at least she asked for food.... that's huge for her!  I have also noticed she's finally building some good muscle and retaining more information in homeschool, so I think the supplementing is helping her in more ways than just body weight.  Yeah!

She is VERY proud of her new booster seat, which is purple, of course :).  All 3 of my kiddos are officially in booster seats now... they are getting so big!!


 
 
And in other news, Madi lost her first tooth!  She was so excited and looks so adorable with a little "window" in her mouth.  She is growing up so fast!!
 


 

The Walk and Roll for Spina Bifida with the Arizona Spina Bifida Association

We had a blast at this year's Walk and Roll for spina bifida with the Arizona Spina Bifida Association.  I want to say a big "thank you" to each and every one of you who came out to walk and/or supported Team Double Trouble. 

Here's a video of the day from our local news station.  If you watch closely, you will see a few photos of my gals :). 
 
CBS 5 - KPHO

Here are a few pictures of our fun, as well as some videos of the kiddos on a modified motorcycle.  I have two girls who think that they are getting one when they turn 16!

 
 
 
 
We made our own shirts this year (thank you for your help Angi and Tony!)... I loved having matching shirts but it was such a pain and long story short they aren't washable now.  Next year we will get screen printed shirts ;).
 
 

 
Snuggling with my sweet nephew, Solomon.  He fell right asleep on me and it made my heart so happy!  I miss having a baby in this house!





 
Our team this year, though we had many more joining us in spirit











 
 
 
 
 
 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Two Big Reasons to Rejoice Today

We have two big reasons to rejoice today!

To start with, both girls had appointments with Dr. Goggins, our orthopedic surgeon, today.  He wrote a prescription for new HKFOs for Ramya as she has outgrown her current pair (Which is great news because she is finally gaining weight!!  Her eating hasn't improved, but she is looking so much healthier, building muscle, and retaining new information so much better!  Yeah!).  He also said he signed off on both the girls new wheelchairs, which they were both recently fitted for, so we are excited to get those.  The biggest news, though, is that Madi's scoliosis came in at 42 degrees when standing again (laying down with the pressure off her dislocated hip it goes down to 28ish degrees), which means her scoliosis is stable and right now there is no reason to proceed with detethering surgery.  Of course if she started declining neurologically, started losing function, or her scoliosis suddenly changed we would know the surgery was necessary, but for now, she does not need surgery.  We go back in 6 months and we will check Madi's scoliosis again at that time. 

Here is the second great bit of news today...

 
 
I know that is hard to read, but that is our U.S. approval to adopt from India.  That means we are one step closer to being able to bring "D" home!  I'm almost done with our dossier paperwork and then that will go to India for approval there.  We still have a long way to go, but I love that we are one step closer!
 
 
Please be praying for our doctor paperwork to get notarized correctly tomorrow (wait, today?  I'm up past midnight so often I forget it means a new day has begun :)).  We have had some issues getting it completed so far.  Basically, about 2 or 3 months ago we got full physicals and a blood panel done to make sure we were healthy.  Everything looked great so our doctor signed the paperwork needed for Arizona/US approval stating that we are healthy enough to adopt.  For our Dossier India wants a different form, though, that states (give or take), "Upon examination (insert name here) shows no signs or symptoms of hepatitis, tuberculosis, HIV, or any other communicable diseases."  I called our office, twice, to tell them what we needed.  We set an appointment date, found a travel notary, and showed up to get the doctor's signature notarized.  After waiting about 45 minutes we were told they wouldn't sign the paperwork because we had never actually been tested for hepatitis, tuberculosis, or HIV.  I tried so hard not to get frustrated, but was feeling pretty bummed.  Not only did we have to pay the travel notary anyhow, as well as our co-pays, but I have been going to the same doctor for about 22 years and David has been going to them for about 11 years.  They have done blood work for both adoptions, and we are always very healthy.  Not to mention the form said that it was "upon examination", not via blood test.  However, I do understand the only way to really know is to test us, so we went ahead and got tested.  All of our blood work and testing came back negative, as we expected, so they said they are now ready to sign the paperwork.  I made an appointment for tomorrow, as that is what worked for our travel notary, but I cannot be there as I teach at homeschool co-op.  I asked if I could drop off the form for the doctor/notary, since my signature does not need to be on the form,  and they said that was fine.  Once David got there to drop off the paperwork, though, they had no clue what the paperwork was for once we dropped it off.  Sigh.  Please be praying it all works out and the paperwork is able to be signed and notarized tomorrow, since this is one of the last "big" things I need to do in order to complete the Dossier.
 
Thank you for following our journey and sharing in our excitement! 
 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Madi Singing While She Walks in her HKFOs

This girl cracks me up.  I love her confidence and creativity.  She brings so much joy to our house!  She loves to make up songs and is constantly singing.  Here's the most recent one she sang while walking.

 

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Madi's Frozen Friend Party

Today was Madi's girls-only friend party (she was pretty serious about the girls only part :)) and we had a blast!  Two very special guests came to visit us and spend the day with us.  I expected a bigger reaction from Madi, but once she realized they were there to celebrate with her, she was very excited and really enjoyed their company!  Here's a video of our special guests arriving....

 
 
 
Anna and Elsa did glitter tattoos, face paint, and singing/dancing with the girls.  They really loved it! 
 
Here are some pictures from Madi's big day....
 
 
 
 
The cake is gluten free and vegan, purchased from The Gluten Free Creations Bakery.  The cake pops were full of all the good stuff, and were raved about (purchased from a friend who makes them). 
 

 
Conner made most of the dipped pretzels to the right and was very proud of himself.  He did a great job!  Our friend Hailey helped with the dipped marshmallows too and she had a blast.




 
 


 
I used to babysit and occasionally mention "Baby K" in our blog... she's not a baby any more!  She's such a sweet girl :)


 
Facepaint is for grown-ups too!  Though we realized it was kind of awkward trying to catch both our faces in a photo, hence the second photo :)...


 
 
There was singing and dancing of course....
 
 
 

 
I seriously cannot believe she is 6 already!  She is such a special little girl; you can just see the joy that radiates from her!  We love celebrating every minute of her!


 
 
And of course there were presents galore, which Madi loved!

 
 

 
 
A big "thank you" to everyone who celebrated with us and helped make this such a special day for our girl.  We love each and every one of you!