Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 30

Today I am thanking God for:

Put it on Mum.  Press play!!

391.  Friends who buy the perfect birthday present.  We have already watched it twice this afternoon;

392.  Finding my Grandfather's 25 years of service award (after Murray getting his on Monday) and realising how perfect it is that he worked for a chocolate company (Nestle).  He actually worked there for 38 years - no wonder I have a sweet tooth.  Apparently back in the day they were allowed to eat whatever they wanted from the production line while they were at work;

393.  No homework for the first week back at school (surely we are safe if they haven't given it out by now).

Isaiah 12:5  
 Sing to the Lord, for he has done glorious things; 
let this be known to all the world.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 29

Today I am thanking God for:

Watch this space...

388.  The final instalment of the home modifications begun;

389.  A good first day back at school for the girls - even though when I asked Ashlea how her day was she responded with "Good.  Only 43 days until the next holidays";  

390.  Neighbours who let your kids gatecrash their movie watching - anyone want to guess what has just been released on DVD and has them all mesmerised?

Press play Mum!!

Isaiah 12:5  
 Sing to the Lord, for he has done glorious things; 
let this be known to all the world.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 28

Today I am thanking God for:

384.  The chance to see Murray get his 25 years of service certificate from the NSW Police.  It was a nice way to mark the end of his working life;

385.  The children being very well behaved during the ceremony.  I prepared them by explaining that it would be like school assembly and they needed to sit still and be quiet;

386.  Ashlea coping with having to stay in her wheelchair the entire time.  She wanted to get out and walk and I was considering it until she gave me an incredibly cheeky laugh when I told her not to grab any police offer's butts;

387.  Some lovely imaginative play from my little chef when we got home.

Isaiah 12:5  
 Sing to the Lord, for he has done glorious things; 
let this be known to all the world.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 27

Today I am thankful for:

Which budgie for lunch Tom?  The yellow one looks tasty...

381.  Time to take Murray for a haircut.  Ashlea and I looked in the pet shop while he was getting his hair cut and they had golden retriever x poodles.  SO CUTE.  They would make a good therapy dog don't you think?

382.  The easiest g-tube change ever for Ashlea - we were both pleasantly surprised;

383.  A lazy Sunday afternoon after our big party day yesterday - including a TV marathon of I Didn't Know I was Pregnant.  My favourite episode so far is of the 46 year old woman who had had her tubes tied and turned up at emergency thinking she was dying.... Can you imagine the shock???

1 Chronicles 29:13 
Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 26 - PARTY DAY!!

Today was Ashlea's birthday party.  We all had a GREAT day and have so much to be thankful for. Let me bombard you with pictures first though :)

9am Ashlea was in the jumping castle from the
minute it arrived.  She can actually WALK in
there now!

Just when we'd recovered from the excitement of the castle arriving
the BEST CAKE EVER arrived

When her friends arrived we bounced, played Pin The Tail on Tom and
Pass the Tom Cat

We sang that song (very quietly)

We made sure Ashlea wasn't watching for this bit...

And a good time was had by all...

This was Ashlea by 4:30pm - Are you tired yet Ashlea?
NO she assures me...

Ashlea was rather sad when the jumping castle had to be packed up.  I tried distracting her with some party food - it worked with her clearly mastering the concept of comfort eating - my sadness help my cheese and bacon balls go into my mouth she said.

Today I am thanking God for:

374.  A great party celebrating Ashlea's birthday with her friends;

375.  The jumping castle man being too busy to pick up the castle until 5:30pm (it was set up at 8:30am - Ashlea did a full days work in there);

376.  No rain;

377.  Aunty Carolin's help - especially with the cleaning up;

378.  Grandma for making the cupcakes and sandwiches;

379.  Super Neighbour Greg supervising the jumping castle again.  I don't know if he does it deliberately to be helpful or if he just really likes jumping castles but the kids had a great time and it was very helpful to have someone in there preventing head clashes.  Some of my friends want to know if the neighbours are available to hire for their next event;

380.  No head clashes or injuries of any kind;

381.  How much fun Ashlea had at her party.  Parties can be one of those heartbreaking things that are few and far between for children with special needs so it was lovely to see Ashlea and all her friends having a great time and just being kids.  What a great day.

1 Chronicles 29:13 
Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 25 Lest We Forget

Today I am thanking God for:

Frederick John Kelly 53rd Battalion AIF
4/1/97 - 26/12/98

371.  All the service men and women who have served our country and the freedom we enjoy (and take for granted) as a result.  So many families like my own where one generation served in the first world war only to lose their sons in the second.  It's almost impossible to imagine the scale of the grief not only for individual families but for our whole country;

372.  Dinner with new friends;

373.  Party preparations underway.

Party treats for the chewing challenged.  I am very thankful I managed to
get these to the fridge without a big spill :)

1 Chronicles 29:13 
Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 24

Today I am thanking God for:

The lovely Narelle folded my washing for years when the twins were

368.  Gorgeous Autumn weather;

369.  Lunch with some of Ashlea's school friends in the gorgeous weather;

370.  A catch up with a lovely friend.

1 Chronicles 29:13 
Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 23

Doing her big girl test...

Today Ashlea had her last ever NICU follow up appointment (our hospital follows children until age 8).  I can't believe our nursery journey is officially over.

At these appointments they typically do full IQ testing among other things.  Obviously they couldn't do the full assessment with Ashlea but they did a verbal intelligence test and Ashlea scored highly enough that she made it onto the graph!  She scored on the 3rd centile - actually on the charts - giving her the official claim to 'mild' intellectual impairment!  Considering her first few follow ups saw her score at least severe for most things I don't think they were expecting her to do so well. The assessors also LOVED seeing Ashlea walking - don't think we were going back there without showing off that party trick!

The NICU was a life changing, life defining moment for me.  It's not just that it was a Big Deal - which it was - it's that it was also a spiritually defining moment.  The first time the question was put to me personally - will you trust Him when the going gets tough?  The NICU very clearly showed me that I am NOT in control at all.  God is the one who is in control - and if He is the one who holds our very lives in His hands where else is there to turn?  Where else have we to go when He alone has the words of eternal life?

Sometimes I am hesitant to say I am thankful for the NICU experience as it is not me personally who has to live with the consequences.  It is predominantly Ashlea's journey, she is the one that lives with the NICU fallout everyday.  Maybe it's not enough for her that I am a better person for the experience?  I can't speak for her but at the moment she seems blissfully unaware that she is any different to her sisters so I will continue (for now) to say I am thankful for the way the NICU shaped and changed me.

Today I am thanking God for:

365.  Ashlea;

366.  The lessons learned from the NICU journey and the glimpse of what's really important that it gave me;

367.  Smart assessors who work out Ashlea's currency to encourage her to work hard at the IQ test.  For those of you who are wondering what her currency is .... batteries.

1 Chronicles 29:13 
Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 22

Today I am thanking God for:

Quite possibly the strangest birthday card ever...

360.  Some boring jobs taken care of (including the double pharmacy run);

361.  Drivers who warn of the cop car lying in wait up ahead.  Is it bad to be thankful for that?  He was parked in a sneaky spot - which is his right of course - chances are I would have got a ticket so I am thankful to have avoided that;

362.  Some party preparations begun.  I had my first birthday party nightmare the other night (in the dream it was pouring rain and I had forgotten to buy anything for the party).  Needless to say I have now at least bought the supplies.  Although I do have a little gripe - how am I meant to wrap the pass-the-parcel now that the Herald is no longer a broadsheet?

363.  Orthotics for my shoes - I'm feeling old;

364.  The birthday card that Carolin found for Ashlea.  How is this relevant to anyone else except our family?  Especially in the light of Ashlea's suck it up poo poo comment!

1 Chronicles 29:13 
Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 21 - Birthday Fun

Today is Ashlea and Audrey's 8th birthday.  EIGHT I tell you - how did that happen???  They have had a great day with presents in the morning followed by our favourite family outings - ice skating and a trip to the chocolate cafe for 'lunch'.  They even got serenaded Happy Birthday by a busker while we were out.




4 months old - 1 month corrected

8 Years Old

Today I am thanking God for:

357.  The eight precious years I have had so far with Ashlea and Audrey.  Considering we didn't know if they were going to survive their birth or the tumultuous NICU journey that followed I am beyond thankful for the eight years I have had so far and am hopeful of many MANY more;

358.  The amazing staff of RPA Newborn care who this time 8 years ago were working feverishly on the girls getting them stabilised;

359.  Access to world class health care - if we didn't live in the country we do at the time we do my girls would not be alive.

And yes I do feel a little teary this year as I contemplate their birthday - not because I am thinking back to the trauma of their birth but rather because I am overwhelmed with thankfulness that they are alive and well and thriving.  Things could have beens so different.  We are so very thankful.

And because I know you all like to see the REAL pics 

1 Chronicles 29:13 
Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 20 - Happy Easter

Today I am thanking God for:

It counts as screen free time doesn't it even
though the bowling alley is full of screens?

353.  The hope of new life that Jesus' resurrection secured;

354.  Ashlea being able to eat - actually eat not just suck and spit out - some of her Easter egg (first time ever);

355.  Birthday presents wrapped for some small people's birthdays tomorrow;

356.  An end (hopefully) to the daily hourly by the minute discussions about how long until Ashlea's birthday and how she wants a Furby Boom and a Furbling for her presents.

Are you excited about tomorrow Ashlea???

See the stone is rolled away 
Behold the empty tomb 
Hallelujah God be praised 
He's risen from the grave 

Oh that rugged cross my salvation 
Where Your love poured out over me 
Now my soul cries out Hallelujah 
Praise and honour unto Thee

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 19 ... And an Ashlea-ism

Today I am thanking God for:

Playing Wii isn't exactly screen free time but it does feel
like a victory over Minecraft!

350.  A birthday party for Audrey to attend;

351.  A big pot of vegetable soup;

352.  One of Ashlea's best one-liners yet:

The girls were all watching a movie.  Ashlea kept getting in front of the TV  and annoying Emma.  Emma was asking her to move and generally whining at her and Ashlea was happily ignoring her.  Then Ashlea let rip with a massive fart.  Massive - even by her standards.  Emma responded with more whining and 'No Ashlea don't do that near me'.  Without missing a beat Ashlea turned to her and said..... "Suck it up Poo Poo".

Psalm 69:30 
I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 18 Good Friday

Today I am thanking God for:

Friends who push Ashlea on the swing...

345.  That first Good Friday where God so showed his love for the world that he gave his one and only Son so that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life;

346.  Gorgeous autumn afternoons spent with friends (especially when those friends push Ashlea on the swing for you);

347.  The reactions of friends who haven't seen Ashlea for ages when they see her walk out to meet them;

348.  A bumper gift of fruit and veg this week - someone deliberately didn't cancel their order over the holidays so we could have it;

349.  An invitation to dinner from a friend - although between her child with chronic lung disease, my immune-suppressed Ashlea and winter coughs and colds going around I don't think we'll be able to actually make it happen until spring but it was a nice thought!

Psalm 69:30 
I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 17

Ready to get our sparkle on.
The lady sitting next to me commented that
Audrey looks like Barbie :)

Today I am thanking God for:

341.  Audrey's birthday outing to see Barbie The Musical.  We had fun getting our sparkle on;

342.  Friends brave enough to mind Ashlea;

343.  That Ashlea was angelic while being minded;

344.  Panadol for my Pink Sparkly Headache.

So much pink.  So many sparkles.

Psalm 69:30 
I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 16

Today I am thanking God for:

Let it go...

337.  A sibling day for Emma and Audrey to attend.  It's so good for the girls to hang out with other siblings and talk about what it is like to be a sibling as well as just be kids and have fun.  One of the exercises they did was to write their worries on slips of paper and then tie them to balloons and release them.  I'm glad Emma in particular got to do this but I also love the way her brain carries the exercise to it's logical conclusion resulting in her desire to see the face of the person who finds all the worries landed in their backyard;

338.  The Compulsory Outdoor Fun Time provided by sibling days;

339.  Some paperwork taken care of (including the paying of my huge tax bill - ouch);

340.  Wheelchair repairs completed.

Psalm 69:30 
I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 15

Today I am thanking God for:

Dislike of the dentist might be genetic... Yes she did have
her hand over her mouth refusing to cooperate at
one stage....wonder who she gets that from...?

334.  A slow morning - my first these holidays - hopefully not my last;

335.  Surviving a trip to the dentist with my travelling circus;

336.  My new Nutrimetics concealer pen.  I am on to my 13th (yes I day say THIRTEENTH) bag of Cadbury mini Easter Eggs...

Psalm 69:30 
I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Thankfulness Apr 14

Today I am thanking God for:

Perfect Pyjama Day - iPad, Cat Choir, Talking Tom and Furby

331.  A pyjama day for the first day of the holidays;

332.  A public holiday next Monday and an appointment the one after which means no work for me until May;

333.  A jumping castle booked for Ashlea's party.  I wasn't going to do it this year but couldn't resist.  I got one with a nice big opening at the front so it will be easy for the kids to get in. Hopefully some of the parents will help act us catchers in case that means it is also easy for the kids to fall out!

Psalm 69:30 
I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving.