Bella and I were at therapy today...it was such a gloomy day! WE all wanted to stay in the BED>
Isabella is doing so well...she is talking so much, doing wonderful with her PT and OT and just amazes us all constantly! HEr speech goals and OT goals have to be changed on a almost every few weeks basis because she catches up so rapidly.... PTL!
In the afternoon i had to make my rounds of picking up all the girls and i couldnt get over how much rain we had had that day. OK LOrd we are finished...LOL
Today we were rejoicing as Giovanna come home with ALL SMilES on her daily report. YEAH My sweet girl. Please continue to pray for her.
Today all the girls were in school and i headed to the Nutritionist. They gave me some ideas on how to help watch the sugars and hopefully loose weight. Im not big on eating a ton of junk....my problem is i guess just what i eat...so please pray for me that the Lord will guide me as i grocery shop and buy only the "good" things for my family to eat.
Giovanna had a terrible day at school today. PLEASE lift her up to the Lord. There are some things going on that we can not figure out at school and she is acting out so much! We are in prayer of what the Lord wants us to do.
Thursday, October 29, 2009
Posted by Rita Andrews at 9:08 AM
Monday, October 26, 2009
Sunday was a beautiful day. It was also Pastor Appreciation day. Our new pastor has been with us since Jan. Man time flies. He is a wonderful man of God! We miss our old pastor but know that He sent us Bro Mike to take us on the next stage of our church walk. WE had lunch after the service and finished it all up with a baby shower. What a busy day. We finally got home around 3:00 and all we wanted to do was rest. The girls had a nice down day after we got home.
Three of the girls had school today and Lily is out Mon and Tues of this week. The teachers are all gone to a conference in Pennsacola at PCC. WE had to pick the other three girls up early so we could be at speech by 2. Whew what a day. The speech therapist and I once again have talked about getting Gabby a communication device. I really want to try the new ipod touch and the communication software that goes with it...however, I just dont know how well it works, and if Gabby could do it. It sure would be nice to have a place to try it out or take it out on a "loaner" to see how the whole thing functions. All three of our girls with Down Syndrome could benefit from one of these if they truely work. They all need the device to help with communication. That is one area that they all are "weak" in. Gabby is on about a 24 mo old level with her communication but a higher level cognitive so it is difficult for her to get her point across in school and or home.
Anyone out there have a ipod newer generation they wanna sell for a really reasonable price? this is the application that helps people of all ages with communication. I think it is such a wonderul product that Apple is standing behind. I pray that we can attain three of these!
Posted by Rita Andrews at 4:27 PM
Saturday, October 24, 2009
WE have had a fantastic day today. First off William did his 10 mile run and the girls and i got ready to head out. We all loaded up to go hunt for Daddy on his run...the girls got a kick out of it! As we turned down each road, they loved looking for Daddy and then they were cute as they all said "Nope no Daddy here!" I got freaked out as I didnt find him as quick as I had thought, and then the fire chief come flying around me with his lights on.....my heart SANK! We eventually found him, he ran faster than he thought, so we were looking on the wrong roads... GO WILLIAM. He is training to run a 15 mile run on Nov 14th in Troy AL.
Once he got home and cleaned up we all headed out to my friend Stephanie's house to the Adoptive Parent Fall festival. The girls loved it! They played games, got their own little pumpkin, rode on a real horse and buggy ride that the Amish folks used, jumped in the moonwalk, walked in the cake walk...and Bella won us a cake...and played with some old friends. They had a great time and so did we. It was nice to just mingle with other adoptive families.
After we left the party we headed over to Chick Fil A and ate a early dinner. The girls got to play again and they were thrilled! While we were eating we met this really nice couple and their two children. He is also in the military and they are intrested in adopting..we talked for well over a hour.
It was nice to just have a family fun day where everyone seemed to enjoy theirselves. William is now gone watching the UFC fights on a 10 FOOT screen and he is in high heaven!
tomorrow is a day to be in the house of the Lord and I cant wait! I hope you all have a fantastic day.
Posted by Rita Andrews at 9:34 PM
Friday, October 23, 2009
Today was a rough day for Giovanna at school. Please pray for her right now. I will fill you in on things when i can.
On a happy note...we had a surprise party for our pastor's 50th birthday tonight at the church and it was alot of fun! 'Happy Birthday Bro Mike!
Tomorrow we will head to the Spinners Pumpkin craft show and then on to the AL Post Adoptive parent support group Fall Festival party!
FUN FUN BUsy weekend!
Posted by Rita Andrews at 9:00 PM
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Posted by Rita Andrews at 4:30 PM
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Ok i have a question for all of you folks out there with multiple children with DS and typical developing children...
WE are currently struggling with some things. Lily knows that something is "different" with the girls in some areas but is quick to tell you...giovanna talks just fine and giovanna and bella can do this and that just great... But Gabby doesnt "get it"... so my question is this...
How do you help your "typical" child understand that sometimes the sibling needs extra help to understand something, or needs extra one on one to "get it"?
Why they dont get a trophy at the Down Syndrome Buddy walk because they also walked, and all three of their sisters do? This is tough!
So for one of my readers out there who's question was....
How do you handle the differences with your girls and how do you help Lily understand that they need extra help?
I DONT KNOW...this is a struggle for us. This year at our Buddy walk I think was much harder. She questioned why she did not get a trophy? Well how do you make her understand that we are there for DOWN SYNDROME AWARENESS and she doesnt have DS? BUT all her sisters do! hmmm...SUGGESTiONs please! I know that in time, say the next 4 years she will begin to understand, but now....what do you do? WE strive to give each of our girls the same rules, the same one on one, the same consequences but William and I both know that the three with Ds need "extra" help..
Posted by Rita Andrews at 10:41 PM
Friday, October 16, 2009
Well Im not doing such a good job following through with the 31 for 21 challenge...Im sorry!
Well here is one of the questions that folks have emailed me:
Do the girls play well with one another since they are all so close in age?
YES. They do play well together. Its so much fun to watch them interact with one another. Bella wants to run the show...she loves taking all their toys away and then running so they dont catch her...well then the "yelling" starts from usually Giovanna and they run in circles to catch her. Once I intervene they all get back to being nice to one another.. Giovanna could easily play on her own or follow me around all day. She is getting to that fun age where she really watches me do things and then will try to do them. She loves sneaking into my bathroom to get into makeup! one day I found her with the mascara thinking it was lipstick and she had black all over her face! I know I should have taken a picture, but the camera was down stairs and all i could think of was to get it off her lips and clothes. The lips were fine, the clothes were not..LOL
Lily likes to think she is the boss in the house and has to be REMINDED often that she is NOT the Momma! I am so thankful that the girls are close in age, as they get older it will really be good for them as well. They will be going through the same things in their youth and young adult years at the same time, so I am praying this will make for a somewhat easy time..OR who am I kidding...I may be hurtin myself LOL!
Posted by Rita Andrews at 10:39 PM
Thursday, October 15, 2009
This video was created by Andrea of Reece's Rainbow. She has a love and desire to help children with Down Syndrome all around the world come to know the love of a Forever Family...
Posted by Rita Andrews at 3:46 PM
Good morning all!
Yesterday Giovanna come home from school and the bus driver said she pulled her own tooth on the bus this afternoon. Im the one who brushes them and didnt even know it was loose! She was so excited to show me and then it hit her..."Oh Im suppose to be crying here" so she started her own mini meltdown...it was rather funny!
Bella was so proud of her "coat of many colors" she made at school as well. Man my babies are growing up so fast! Lily had a NO tally day at school....meaning she did everything she was suppose to and did NOT talk in class!!! YEAH!!! Gabby had a good day at school as usual and was so happy to show me her folder!
Posted by Rita Andrews at 8:02 AM
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Deeb Habchi is a special Eagle Scout
By Yvonne T. Betowt
October 12, 2009, 6:20AM
Deeb Habchi.jpgEric Schultz -- Huntsville TimesDeeb Habchi, who has Down syndrome, earned 21 merit badges and did a community project to earn his Eagle Scout badge.MADISON, AL - Six months ago, Bob Jones High School student Deeb Habchi became a member of an exclusive club when he earned his Eagle Scout badge as a member of Troop 350 in Madison.
Only 4 percent of all boys who join Scouts become an Eagle Scout, which requires earning 21 merit badges and completing a community project before reaching their 18th birthday.
Deeb's merit badges ranged from computers and communications to camping and crime prevention. Then he embarked on his Eagle project - building a sidewalk from a classroom to an outdoor patio area for Bob Jones special needs students to prevent their shoes, walkers and wheelchairs from getting muddy when it rains.
He finished the project less than a month before his 18th birthday - April 18. He was presented his Eagle Scout badge at a ceremony Sept. 26 at St. John Catholic School where Troop 350 meets.
By the way, Deeb Habchi has Down syndrome.
Down syndrome is a genetic condition usually caused during a pregnancy when a cell divides, leaving the embryo with three copies of chromosome 21 instead of the usual two, according to the National Down Syndrome Society 's Web site (www.ndss.org).
October is Down Syndrome Awareness Month and Deeb recently helped as a volunteer at the Buddy Walk at Joe Davis Stadium in Huntsville.
"I just want other kids with Down to know they can do it," said Deeb, who also learned to snow ski while on a Scouting trip to West Virginia.
"We are so proud of Deeb," said his father, Sami Habchi, who served as an assistant Scout master in his son's troop. He worked closely with Deeb on his final project along with many of the troop members. "It's a big accomplishment for him. We hope by sharing his story it will inspire others."
The father and son teamed up on the Eagle project, which took five months from start to finish. After Deeb got permission from the school, he and his dad planned the dimensions and made the drawings for the sidewalk, which had to be submitted to a troop leader for approval.
Construction began Feb. 21 and, after more than 160 labor hours donated by Deeb, his family, fellow scouts and friends who put down 1,200 bricks, the project was completed March 22.
"We could have gotten an extension (because of his disability), but we didn't want to take away from what he had already accomplished,
It was not an easy road for Deeb who had school work and extracurricular activities at school that required his attention.
"I thought about quitting because I wanted to do other stuff in high school," said Deeb who has been in Scouting since he became a Cub Scout while in first grade. "But I just decided not to give up."
Deeb, whose parents are from Lebanon, was named after his paternal grandfather. His name means "wolf."
While Deeb did the majority of the work on his badges and project, he had a lot of moral support from his family, including his dad, mom, Nawal, and sisters, Kristina, 16, and Hana, 11.
But it was not just a family affair. It was virtually the entire community of Madison pulling for one of their favorite sons.
"Working with Deeb has enriched my life," said Deeb's former Scout Master Reed Alexander. "He did everything he was supposed to do and didn't need any special consideration. Deeb's journey was a steady progress. He showed that Scouts is for all kids regardless of their ability or socio-economic status."
His current Scout Master, Dave Johnston, who has known him for seven years, said Deeb "did all the work. Becoming an Eagle Scout is not easy for anyone, especially one with challenges. But it never seemed to be a struggle for Deeb."
Karen Sargent, a volunteer with Troop 350 and at Bob Jones, said Deeb's winsome personality draws people to him.
"The boys just love Deeb," she said. "It amazes me what he has accomplished. The success (of a person with Down syndrome) depends on the family support."
Sargent's son, Taylor, earned his Eagle Scout badge by building a sidewalk on the other side of the patio area, opposite Deeb's project. Another Eagle Scout also played a role in the project.
David Miles of Madison, who was killed when the bus he and other Marines were traveling in overturned in South Alabama, built the patio area where the two sidewalks Taylor and Deeb built now lead, said Sargent.
Deeb has always attended regular classes at school and did not even know until recently he has Down syndrome.
"We wanted to treat him as normal as possible," said Sami Habchi. "The schools have always worked very well with us and we appreciate everyone's support."
He is especially appreciative to the Scout Masters and den leaders, including Alexander, Johnston, Jay Perry and David Mark, for supporting Deeb. He also credits his wife for helping Deeb succeed in school.
"I worked with him in Scouts, but she did the schoolwork," he said.
Nawal is grateful for the support of local educators, especially Maria Kilgore, director of special education with the Madison schools.
"The schools always wanted to put Deeb in the special needs class, but we always asked them to put him in a regular class and if the teacher complained, we said we would take him out," she said. "No one ever had any complaints."
Nawal Habchi says Deeb's first speech therapist was his sister, Kristina, who repeated a word over and over until her older brother would say it.
He sometimes has difficulty pronouncing words so his youngest sister, Hana, tries to help by saying the words for him. But, like most brothers, he's not always keen on his sister's assistance.
"Go sit down," said Deeb during a conversation with a visitor to the Habchis' Madison home. "I can handle this."
Deeb can pretty well handle anything life throws at him. After all, he is an Eagle Scout.
© 2009 al.com. All rights reserved.
Posted by Rita Andrews at 3:33 PM
Posted by Rita Andrews at 12:38 PM
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
I posted this a long time ago but was just reminded last night how oh so true it is. Each and everyone of our three girls are so different. They each learn at their own pace and learn what they are able to. I love each one of them the same. So when you come across someone with Down Syndrome or any other dis ABILITY think about how much they want to learn, want to talk and want to show the world! We are all the same just different!
My face may be different
But my feelings the same
I laugh and I cry
And I take pride in my gains
I was sent here among you
To teach you to love
As God in the heavens
Looks down from above
To Him I'm no different
His love knows no bounds
It's those here among you
In cities and towns
That judge me by standards
That man has imparted
But this family I've chosen
Will help me get started
For I'm one of the children
So special and few
That came here to learn
The same lessons as you
That love is acceptance
It must come from the heart
We all have the same purpose
Though not the same start
The Lord gave me life
To live and embrace
And I'll do it as you do
But at my own pace
Posted by Rita Andrews at 1:18 PM
Monday, October 12, 2009
We have had a lazy lazy Monday. Girls just played and I cleaned up. I finally got to the 2 boxes of stuff that needed to be filed and gone through.... man it felt good to finish. Now much much more to do.
Tomorrow G, G and Bella are off of school and Lily does have to go. She is not happy about that. I have lots to do tomorrow as well. Sorry for the crazy sounding post but I have got to get the girls in bed...
here is a pic from the buddy walk on Saturday
Posted by Rita Andrews at 7:38 PM
Sunday, October 11, 2009
I am so sorry for not getting back with you all the other day about the winner...It has been crazy!!! Lots going on!
BUT THE WINNER from Varhsa's birthday celebration IS.........LESLIE NELSON.
I just went to read about her family...oh what a precious family they are. I cant wait to learn more from them.
Also here is the video of our Birthday party for Varsha! My girls loved it, I cried inside, and William did the video. I asked each girl what they would give Varsha for her birthday if she were here..this is what they each said: Giovanna would give her a trip to the market (hmm dont know where that came from), Gabby would give her a ring, Lily would give her a picture of our family and a teddy bear and Isabella would give her....BIRTHDAY CAKE...
Happy Birthday sweet girl.
Posted by Rita Andrews at 3:47 PM
Friday, October 9, 2009
Posted by Rita Andrews at 9:46 PM
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
Well you all have probably wondered what the special day was for today....
Here ya go...
Today 7 years ago in a town in India a precious little girl with Down Syndrome was born. She was not wanted because she was not "perfect" in the eyes of her birth family. This day has never been celebrated as a HAPPY day for this sweet little girl by a family ever! So today I want to celebrate. She is a child that I have never ever held in my arms, I yearn to do this...however it must not be the timing God has for our family...BUT she will FOREVER hold a huge piece of my heart. WE pray for her every single night...all my girls love to pray for her and for God to send her a Mommy and Daddy, Grandma and Grandpa to love her and protect her. I love to hear their innocent prayers, the voice of a child speaking to God....I know it makes Him smile even larger than I do.
So today, our family is celebrating Varsha's 7th birthday with cake and singing. She will never know we did this, but it will hold a impact on my girls lives forever, especially Lily. She understands that Varsha doesnt have a Mommy and Daddy to love her, tuck her in at night, pray with her, kiss her boo boo's. teach her about JESUS, and to protect her forever. She asks me each night, when is Jesus going to send her mommy and daddy on a airplane to pick her up....my response is this " Jesus is talking to that Mommy and Daddy, and when they are ready..they will go!" PLEASE WONT YOU ALL STAND WITH US IN PRAYER....THAT JESUS WILL ANSWER THE PRAYERS OF MY CHILDREN, Send Varsha her family that will protect her and love her forever.. Deep down inside, I so want it to be our family...because we love her dearly, but if it is not meant to be....LORD PLEASE SEND HER A MOMMY AND DADDY!!! SOON!!!
WE love you sweet Varsha. I may never get to hold you in my arms, but I will forever HOLD you TIGHTLY IN MY HEART! Your life today is being celebrated with love for you....keep smiling that big smile of yours...God will answer your secret prayers soon.
If you want more information about this sweet Varsha, please send me a comment and I will answer what i can for you.
And in celebration of Varsha' birthday...I want to bless another family that has a child with Down Syndrome. My gift is this..two books on teaching your child (something Varsha really needs to succeed in life)
Teaching Math to children with Down Syndrome
Teaching Reading to children with Down Syndrome.
So leave me a comment about how your heart is for the orphans of this world. Have you adopted a child with Down Syndrome and if so how has your life been changed.
I will put all the entries into a hat and let my girls draw a name. The drawing will be done tomorrow to give everyone today to registar. It will close at midnight tonight.
These book are brand new.
Posted by Rita Andrews at 8:06 AM
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
GIVE A WAY AS WELL TOMORROW
SO COME ON BACK!
Posted by Rita Andrews at 8:41 PM
Monday, October 5, 2009
Well today I had to take Bella and Gabby to the Dr. Gabby has a burst ear drum and Bella has a terrible cough, and upper respiratory infection. They did a chest Xray to be sure it was not pneumonia.....she has some fluid but not enough to have full pneumonia. They both are on antibiotics for 14 days more....
This is probably the one thing that I hate about Down Syndrome!!!! Our children have such lower immune systems and catch everything. The fall and winter months our girls stay sick! giovanna is also not feeling great, but they were out of appointments today. I will watch her and take her in if she doesnt kick this!
i promise to write more but im just so tired now, im heading off to bed.
TWO MORE DAYS UNTIL MY GIVE AWAY!!!!
Posted by Rita Andrews at 8:35 PM
Sunday, October 4, 2009
and to celebrate this special day I will have a give away..
maybe even two!
Come back and see!!
Posted by Rita Andrews at 9:09 PM
I just had to share this! Lily, our daughter who just turned 6, had her birthday at the local YMCA play center. WE love this place. As a matter of fact between all 4 girls we have had our last 4 parties there. Anyway, Lily had several of her friends from school at the party. They all had so much fun running and playing in the HUGE indoor play arena (kinda like a HUGE McDonalds playcenter). After the party was finished (our 2 hour limit reserved) it opens up to other members. Looking through the large window was 6 little girls (from India) just waiting to run inside and play. After all of our party friends left, we let our girls stay and play for a little while longer...Well the 6 little girls got to come in and play as well at this point. I just had to sit and laugh the whole time they all were in the play center.. They spoke very good english (the grandmother, dressed in her whole Indian attire was also present) and kept running around saying "Look at all the girls from China!" Oh no the china girls are gonna get us!" i was tickled!!!! EVerytime Giovanna or Gabby would get near them, they would screech ....the china girls are here..the china girls are here!!!!!!
I laughed as all 10 girls ran around chasing one another the whole time talking about the girls from China...
I so wanted to explain Down Syndrome not China to them but it just wouldnt have been the same...
so I guess Im not only blessed with three daughters with Down Syndrome but also three daughters from China....never mind they are from Guatemala, India and Colombia!!! LOL
I just have to say..........I LOVE ALMOND SHAPED EYES...THERE IS JUST SOMETHING SO OVERLY SPECIAL ABOUT THEM!!!
Posted by Rita Andrews at 8:57 PM
Saturday, October 3, 2009
Then after all that, the babysitter come over and we headed out around 5:15. WE went to pick up our Buddy Walk Tshirts (the walk is in Montgomery at the Biscuits stadium on Sat Oct 10) then off to registar for the 5k marathos this William is running in this morning. Finally we headed off to a quiet dinner at Carabas. Oh we both just love that place!! At the point of our quiet dinner coming to a close it was too late for a movie so off to the book store we went. Overall we had a nice night....now Im already to do it again!
We are strongly leaning towards pulling G & G both out and homeschooling. I am getting more excited at the idea and pray that the Lord will continue to give me the "little" signs He has been so we can make a FINAL decision. Im trying to hear the school out in all the suggestions/solutions they offer to this particular situation and I feel that will truly be our answer.
Thursday, October 1, 2009
REMEMBER TO TURN OFF THE MUSIC ON MY BLOG..AT THE VERY BOTTOM OF THE RIGHT COLUMN.
To start the month out on a perfect note....you have got to watch this video. This young couple, both with Down Syndrome...just got married. This is just the sweetest story!!!
May God richly bless them in their forever life together.
Posted by Rita Andrews at 9:55 PM