Friday, June 8, 2012

Sizes of People

Small people talk about people.
Medium sized people talk about events.
Great people learn to talk about ideas.

~Susan Easton Black's Father

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Celebrations with Deborah

Today has been a sweet day with Deborah.   She painted this beautiful rock. 

We have celebrated her successes today and it's just been a good day!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Manipulation and Therapy

On Tuesday I quietly entered the therapy room to take a few pictures of Ryan working with his Occupational Therapist, Manuel.   I didn't say a word, but just snapped a couple of pictures.

As you can see from the picture above and below, he was working so hard and sitting so well with just a little help.  Ryan looked so strong.  He even seemed to be enjoying himself.

Then, I said, "Hi, Ryan!"  And, the manipulation began ... notice the eye rub that says, "Oh, I'm so tired!"

We're all on to him about that.  So, I don't rescue him.  So, once he remembers that, then he kind of smiles and continues to work.  (Well, sometimes.)  But, he never fails to give it a try.  

It was fun to catch it on camera.  It really made me smile that in the first 3 clicks, I caught it on camera.

Below are a couple of other shots that I thought you might enjoy. 

A few interesting things you might notice in the pictures: 

The white the brace on Ryan's chest helps to stabilize his midsection so that he can work a little harder and a little longer.  We've really seen a lot of improvement since we started using it.  It's called a TLSO brace, which actually stands for Thoraco-Lumbo-Sacral Orthosis. It wraps around Ryan's body and then velcros closed in the back.  You may also notice that there's a little round cut out just off center by his belly button.  That is actually cut out so that his mic-KEY button doesn't get messed up by the brace.

The green disc that Manuel is holding in his right hand is what Ryan was sitting on.  (Manuel was removing it as I was taking this picture.)  I'm not sure if he was using it just to position Ryan or if he was using it get Ryan to balance himself more.  It can be used for both purposes.

One of the skills that we are working on with Ryan is reaching.  He has just recently started using his hands more.  He can now wave hello and goodbye.  He will occasionally even lift his arm a little when he waves.  So now we are trying to get him to extend his arms for things.  You can see in this next picture that Manuel has moved the toy away from him and is getting him to push the horn.

You might also notice that Ryan's face is pointing away from the toy, but if you look closely, you'll notice that his eyes are looking in the direction of the toy.  Ryan seems to do that a lot.  From what I have read, it is common with children with cortical vision impairment.

I hope you've enjoyed a quick peek into therapy with Ryan.  It was a good day!  I'm so thankful Ryan is getting stronger.  He sure has worked hard and he's come a long way in the past year!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012


Sunday Deborah was fascinated by the "lines" on my forehead.  She wanted to know why I had lines and she didn't.  I explained to her that when she's a Mom she'll be lucky enough to get lines too.  She liked that idea.  {Oh, how I smiled inside!  Brilliantly marketed.  Who needs Botox?}  She then wanted to know why I had so many lines?  So I explained that I have a line for each child.  And, it's true.  I really do.  I have one line per child.  To this, my confident Deborah replied that the shortest line must be hers!

The conversation didn't bother me much.  I've accepted the "lines" on my forehead as the inevitable result of raising my eyebrows in warning to my children too often.  My Aunt Elsie warned me it would happen, but it was better than yelling at them.  And, besides, it hasn't really hit me that it's a warning that old age is approaching.

But, yesterday I went to visit the Rheumatologist.  I can never decide whether those visits make me feel super young, since I'm typically one of the younger looking in the waiting room, or super old since I'm in the waiting room.  Then I was diagnosed with Bursitis.  Bursitis.  It just sounds like something caused by old age, doesn't it?

But nothing tops tonight's dinner conversation.  I was sharing with the kids a little story from the book I'm currently reading.  In order to set the scene, I was explaining a little about the traditions of 1840's.  Johnathon looked at me and said, "Mom, were you alive then?" Oh, yes, he was sincere. No joking. No kidding.

Now, I feel old.  :)

Great Books

My children love to read, and before they can read they love to have me read books to them.  Often they want the same book read over and over to them.  I love to read to them.  Over the years, we have read some great books together:  The Chronicles of Narnia, The Tale of Despereaux, James and the Giant Peach, Harold and the Purple Crayon, The Invention of Hugo Cabret, ... and the list goes on.

I don't remember always loving to read.  I know I read books, but somehow as I got older I thought became too busy to immerse myself in anything other than scriptures or an occasional self-help book.  Then I rediscovered the love of reading.

This morning I finished a book by a lady that I love to read her words, Mary Ellen Edmunds.  She seems to be the kind of lady that it'd be fun to spend the day with her.  I think we would laugh a lot and I think I'd feel uplifted.  Do you have a friend like that?  One that even though you laugh and play all day, you still feel uplifted and like you're a better person for having spent the day with that friend?

I've read a few of her books.  This one is "Love is a Verb."  There is so many great little tidbits in this book.  I just want to share with you a few of my favorite things.

A great quote from President Ezra Taft Benson "Men and women who turn their lives over to God will find out that he can make a lot more out of their lives than they can.  He will deepen their joys, expand their vision, quicken their minds, strengthen their muscles, lift their spirits, multiply their blessings, increase their opportunities, comfort their souls, raise up friends and pour out peace.  Whoever will lose his life to God will find he has eternal life." 

"Prayer is the preparation for miracles."
~Elder H. Burke Peterson

There is a list of suggestions of big and little things that we can do that might be helpful in increasing our love, compassion and responsiveness to the Spirit.  Some of the suggestions are:

  • Visit someone who can't come to see you.
  • Once a week, speak to someone whom you don't know (yet).
  • Work to develop a countenance of love; strive to look at others in such a way that they know they are loved even if they have no idea who you are.
The list goes on, but it made me think -- Wouldn't it be fun to make a Bucket List of these types of things?  

 And, while I could go on and on, about my favorite things about this book, I'd just recommend that you read the book.   I think you will be captivated by the way this author so joyfully invites the reader to make love a verb.