Latest Entries »

What I really mean…

What I really mean when I tell people “he is not really a talker”…

Evan has been diagnosed with Childhood Oral Apraxia.  But saying he isn’t a talker is so much easier…until he gets frustrated and mad that we don’t understand him.  Then I feel the need to explain to others that he has apraxia.  He is such a funny and affectionate kid…it is a bit heart breaking that he has to deal with this.

Basically, all the lights are on (his therapist actually comments all of the time on how ridiculously intelligent he his) but he can’t get the words from his brain to form from his mouth.  It is a neurological condition, and most of the time, they have no known reason for why it occurs.  There are a lot of steps that happen in a split second for us to speak.  And he has a disconnect somewhere in that process.  It is like a stroke victim having to learn to speak…or walk…or grab an object.  They know what they want to say/do, but they can’t make their body do it.  Needless to say, it is VERY frustrating…and 2 year olds don’t always know how to deal with their frustrations in the best way.  And while I try to be very patient, it can be frustrating for mom, too.

We have been working with a therapist through ECI (which was a long process to get started).  She finally gave this diagnosis and said that he is one of the purest cases she has worked with (a lot of time there are other sensory or fine motor skill issues).  It was a big relief to have a formal diagnosis!  Unfortunately, she also feels that ECI is not able to give him the type of intensive therapy that he needs with a medical approach.  This is where it gets really frustrating.  I am having the hardest time finding a therapist that specializes in apraxia who has opening for new patients!  Our branch of TCH said that they can’t even get him in for an evaluation until late September!  After the evaluation, he would then be put on the waiting list for therapy!  Another therapist agreed to take him on until we told him that we aren’t on Medicaid.  Messed up, much?  Another therapist would be an hour of driving with 30 mins of therapy (at least 2x/week) and she had no real waiting room.  Practically speaking, I can’t imagine dragging along a 6 yo, 4 yo, 2 yo, and newborn for the drive and trying to entertain them in a business office hallway.    So basically, we have a diagnosis…and we know the kind of the help that he needs…but there is no one around us that can provide the intensive therapy that he needs now.

I did get a few neat apps for the Ipad that are for apraxia!  Guess that is something for us to work on in the meantime!

***I promise I will get around to a post about all of the fun, wonderful things going on in our life.  We have a lot to be thankful for!  I just had this on my mind…and family might be wondering why he isn’t a “talker”!

We are at the halfway mark of this pregnancy!  Here is a not so cute self-portrait from this morning, but I felt that I needed some documentation of this pregnancy.  I definitely GROW as the day wears on and my abs give out.

Image

(I was really on my way to workout…not just bumming it in my comfy clothes…although I do that too!).

Pregnancy is going really well.  I have quite a bit of energy now and never got too sick.  Only exception is the ridiculous bouts of sciatic pain.  it started at around 4 weeks and has progressively gotten worse.  I am seeing the chiropractor a few times a week…hoping to get some relief.  I have already almost fallen down the stairs 3x when the pain catches me off guard.  Worries me for when I am bigger and more unbalanced.  I have to get this under control.  ASAP.  

BIG NEWS: At my 20 week ultrasound today, they confirmed that it is a BOY!  Yep.  We will have 4 Boys.  God must have big plans for this family!  I won’t get the official results from the Ultrasound until next week at my doctors appointment, but he looks healthy to me.  Now, to start finalizing a name…and trying to get inspired on another masculine nursery.  Image

Precious baby boy.

 

This next part is just going to be me being completely honest.  Might want to skip over if you are feeling judgmental or can’t read this with an understanding, compassionate heart.

First off, I am so excited for this baby.  I truly believe that all babies are blessing.  A gift from God.  I am totally grateful to God for this child.  Another boy is going to be so much fun.  And our home is sure to be one full of laughter, energy, smelly shoes, pranks, love, roughhousing, balls (the sports kind!), camo, teasing, dirty dishes…you get the idea.  I can’t wait for what is in store for our family.  If I had to choose between having 4 girls or 4 boys, I would have voted 4 boys ALL DAY LONG.  Little boys rock.  And I am not uber girly.

But, there is a “but”.  Or maybe it should be an “and”.  While I am thrilled and honored to be trusted to care for 4 of God’s little boys, I am, in a weird way, mourning.  We are done having kids after this.  I will never be able to have the “mother/daughter” relationship that my heart has hoped for.  I don’t think it is a worldly desire to want a daughter…so I am a bit confused as to why it is was put on my heart, if it wasn’t meant to be.  I am not too sad (just a little sad) about the lack of precious outfits or mani/pedi outings, although I would have gone crazy shopping if this was a girl and I already had my girly nursery picked out.  It is more about in the future…as my child grows into an adult.  No helping her get ready for her first dance. Or helping my daughter pick out a wedding dress and planning the wedding.  Or helping as she has her babies.  Or weekly lunch dates just to visit.  Or middle of the night phone calls for parenting advice.  I think that boys and girls, in general, just have a different relationship with their moms.  And don’t get me wrong, the relationship between a boy and his mama is SO SPECIAL!  but different.  Maybe it is just something missing in my own life that makes me want that other relationship.  I don’t know.  For now, I just pray that God will give me peace on this matter.  

Oh, and please don’t ask me (or any parent of all boys) if I am disappointed, in front of my boys.  Or, you couldn’t get a  girl?  Or anything of that nature.  I never want my boys to feel that they aren’t enough.  They are amazing.

And, don’t ask if we know what causes this.  We do.  And we are completely happy and thankful for our big family.

Basketball team comments are acceptable.  I don’t even mind too terribly the “you’ve got your hands full” comments.  Because I do.  Literally. 

Snowballs, Sledding, & Skiing

I really wanted to get the boys to snow this year…and the 2 biggies up on skis.  It is so much easier when you can learn at a young age.  Since they are newbies, they don’t need a big mountain.  SOOO, off we went to New Mexico for a last minute trip.

Flight was a smooth a can be…just a lot more gear when you have to pack for skiing.  Luckily, my mom joined us so we had an extra set of hands to help.  As long as there is curb side check-in, we decided we could even do this on our own with the new babe!

Skiing:Image  

Parker’s car sickness combined with his altitude sickness meant he had to sit out the first day…with Joseph watching him in the halls of the resort.  Evan, my mom, and I had already headed down the mountain.  He kept trying to go to ski school, but he would walk a few steps and then collapse in total defeat.  He shared his sickness all over the resort.  In one quick attempt to make it to the restroom, our nice camera bit the dust.  So all pics from the trip are from my i-phone…not many of them.

ImageMuch better the next day.  Trick is Dramamine 1 hour in advance, front seat, and Ginger Ale, and lots of towels and bags just in case.

Both boys really loved skiing and did really well.  They can’t wait until they can go back next year.  Since I won’t be prego, I will be able to join them!

Image

Cold, early mornings…Imagelike in the teens cold.  Parker was out barefoot and short sleeved.  Huntsinger genes.  Definitely.

ImageFireside snuggles.

ImageLots of Legos (Thank you, Grandma!)  Early in the morning and late at night.  I woke up at 4 am one morning and got up only to find Parker sitting at the breakfast table working on his newest creation.  Apparently, it couldn’t wait until a decent hour.  Crazy kid!

ImageLittle bit of Ipad.  It was out in the open.  Not in use.  He saw his chance and took.  Pants or no pants.  He was going for it.

ImageLOTS of sledding.  Evan’s favorite activity by far.  He would just drag the sled along everywhere.  Whether or not someone actually wanted a ride.  

And they wanted to walk all over the frozen lakes and partially frozen river.  Made me a nervous wreck, but they had fun.

ImageGreat trip!

One of my fondest memories from my childhood is our yearly trips to Colorado with loads of family.  I think we went almost every year from the time I was 6 until 16 or so with a group of around 30 people.  Lots of food (thanks to “Grandma in a Box”) and game nights and skiing (from the first to the last lift ride up).  Hope that we can bring that tradition back!

 

 

Bubba turns 4!!!

Parker that is.  Ben is BeBe (initials are BB).  Evan is BoBo (always getting injured).  Parker is Bubba (best little and big brother ever).  We like nicknames apparently.

Anyway, my middle man is FOUR now.  Wow, that has flown by!  He is such a joy and makes us laugh daily.  He is also such a nurturer.  Always loving on his brothers and me.  He loves sports and wrestling, swimming in the hot tub, building Legos (his latest addiction), reading, and making others laugh.  

The newest Parker-ism is fularious.  As in, that flying monkey is “fularious”.  So funny, it is hilarious.  It has now been added to the whole family’s vocabulary.

Another Parker-ism is when he is eating something that he loves.  When his plate of sticky chicken (general tsos minus the batter/frying) is set in front of him, he says “i am just going to slam my face in it…just slap it on my face.”  (I have a video, but can’t get it uploaded…maybe one day.) Such a nut!  And I love him for it!

We celebrated on Sunday with family at the house.  Heated up the hot tub and pool and the kiddos were happy!  He wanted a puppy dog…he got a stuffed one!

ImageMonday was his actual birthday and he chose “chips and salsa” for dinner.

ImageAnd he also wanted to celebrate with his school friends on Tuesday…

 

Image

A cute cookie cake by Custom Confections by Amanda.  Parker loves elephants.Image

Imagejust a touch of sarcasm there.  Ben’s class celebrated their 100th day of school on Tuesday.  I knew this day was coming for 2+weeks and a celebratory shirt was needed.  Unfortunately, between two kids surgeries, vacation, two family birthdays, and Valentines Day…plus everyday tasks…it slipped through the cracks.

I remembered at 8:3…on Tuesday morning.  Awesome.  Ben ran upstairs and grabbed a white tee while I grabbed some markers.  100 dots later, we were done and in the car by 8:41.  I am not proud.  But I am VERY thankful for my gracious son who showed me compassion by saying “this is awesome!” and never complained at the lack of planning or creativity that went into the making of the horrible shirt.  I am already “that” mom that I never thought I would be…and he is only in kindergarten!

 

Valentine’s Day isn’t at the top of my favorite holidays to celebrate…not even close…but we still had fun this year.  

The boys got to celebrate at school with their friends.  We made Valentines card using this free printable http://sweetmuffinsuite.com/2012/02/day-4-free-kids-valentine-card-printable/ .  It was really cute, simple, and no candy involved.  

They came home to 2 dozen red heart balloons.Image

Joseph was shocked because it is totally out of character for me to buy ANYTHING that is so completely impractical…but the boys loved it which made it totally worthwhile.

My friend, Amanda, from Custom Confections by Amanda, made them these adorable tattoo cookies for dessert.Image

Do you like the snowflake paper napkins?  It was all that I had available that would remotely fit the theme, and the boys certainly didn’t care!

We enjoyed a nice, relaxing (read: no crowds, no wait) dinner at home.  The boys are completely spoiled with filet mignons (if I am going to splurge and eat a steak…it is going to be a good one).  They are going to be such food divas when they are older…and I will be to blame.  

Image(terrible pic)

I am thankful that I have such a wonderful family to shower with love!

ImageJoseph celebrated his 34th birthday last week.  Since his birthday came right after returning from vacation and right before Valentines and Parker’s birthday, it was really low key.  Just a fun dinner at Pappasito’s with the boys and boston cream pie cupcakes at home.  The boys and I were so happy to celebrate such an amazing, hardworking dad/husband…even if he is getting pretty old!

Tubular

Tubular

Evan got tubes this morning after being postponed for a week due to the doctor having the flu. It was just the two of us, and although I know it is a simple procedure, those 15 minutes alone in the waiting room seemed to take a lot longer! As expected, the left side had a lot a fluid build up, right side was decent. It went fine, and we are hoping and praying for a quick and dramatic improvement in his speech now that he will be able to hear us.
I was surprised in the differences in how kids react to the procedure (and most importantly, anesthesia). After Ben’s tubes when his was 11 mos old, he was already flirting with a handful of nurses when I was taken back to him. On the other hand, Evan was screaming his head off, totally disoriented, making himself gag. Nice. The nurses were so glad to see me walking through the door to pass him off. His reaction may have freaked them out a little!

He is fed and sleeping now. Let’s hope we see a happier, healthier camper when he wakes up!

We are ALIVE!

Yep.  Still kicking, just took a leave of absence.  A LOT has happened.  A big move (all of 1.5 miles from our old house).  Growing boys.  And a new addition.  

Here is where we are now.

ImageImage

We are getting settled, slowly but surely, in the new home.  It has an amazing backyard with a fabulous pool that can keep the boys busy for hours.  Still need to work on decorating, but that is a process that will take time.  I like to find “the perfect” piece!

Image

Ben is in kindergarten!  Hard to believe that we have such a big boy.  He is so smart and well mannered.  Doing great in school.  We kept him at our church school which I absolutely love!  Teachers are amazing.  2 teachers for 11 kids.  Great ratio!  He loves reading and learning about everything.  He is a questioner…which can be frustrating!  Being out on his bike is one of his favorite places to be.  

Image

Parker is 3 (4 in a month!).  He goes to Pre-k 3 at our church 2 days per week and always looks forward to school days.  Parker is hilarious and so animated.  He tells the best stories.  Some sound like they could be true but others are from way out in left field.  He loves being outside but can always find a way to entertain himself wherever we are!  

Image

Evan turned 2 in November.  He is a total Momma’s Boy.  I’ll take it!  It won’t be that way for too long.  He loves kissing Daddy’s Girlfriend and getting a rise out of Joseph.  It is one of their favorite games.  Evan is also a worker.  Always on the move.  If he sees something that needs to be done, he is on it…wipe up spills, new trash bag.  I hope this continues throughout his teenage years!  Unfortunately, Evan has some speech delays.  He is getting tubes on Monday which will hopefully get him hearing well (dr. said probably has fairly significant hearing loss from the fluid).    He starts with the speech therapist tomorrow.  Doing what we can to catch him up!  He is extremely intelligent though.  I can give his several instructions (go upstairs, get your dirty clothes, bring them down, and put them in the laundry room) and he follows through.  He is a BIG boy.  Top of the charts and very close in size to Bubba Parker!  

In other news, we are adding another kiddo to the Pfeiffer clan!  Baby is due in July, but already measuring big.  4 kids will keep us busy, but I love big families.  Lots of reward, lots of work.  

Some more pics of the family…

Image

Image

 

Image

 

Addicted

Nearly empty bag.

This is my newest addiction.  Which means Costco will discontinue it within the next month or two.  Like they did with my Love Crunch.

GRA-PO-LC-Choco-US-Front.jpg

So good.  Mix with some honey yogurt and fresh berries.  Sweet goodness!  Guess I have to order online now.  Unless “special requests” are not just a ploy.  In which case, I will be even more devoted to Costco.  Four hungry boys.  Buying in bulk a a necessity!

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.