Friday, March 27, 2009

belly laughs

If this doesn't make you laugh, I'm not sure what will.

Monday, March 16, 2009

owen's "gotcha day"

Owen. My crazy, little Owie,

You've been home now for one full year. And since your first "Gotcha Day" on March 17, 2008, you have changed our lives with your fearless spirit and mischievous smile.

When you were only a few hours old, you defied medical odds and showed the doctors that you were ready for this world. "How could it be that this baby is doing so well?"
No one understood, but boy, were we grateful.

Strength was something you possessed from the very beginning, even when you were a mere two and a half pounds. The meaning of your name - young warrior - fits you perfectly. In fact, if we could bottle your determination and sell it, we could probably afford to pay all of your sister's medical bills.

What is wonderful about you is that your strength comes from your good attitude. Lover of meal time and long afternoon naps, of eskimo kisses and daddy zerberts, of crawling on the grass and climbing on dining room chairs; lover of grandparents and big dogs, of crib jumping and obstacle courses, of playing in the dishwasher and chewing on windowsills - you are unique and oh so loveable. Wherever you go, whatever you do, you will continue to engage everyone with your friendly personality. It's as if you smile and say, "Come with me! We're sure to have fun along the way."

The video camera shakes with giggles when I am filming you; the way you laugh - with zero reservation or control - makes my heart happy; the way you want to do everything you're told NOT to do makes me worry about the one cabinet door in the kitchen that still isn't latched.

And all of that is why we adore you; why we are proud of you; and why we couldn't imagine our home without you. (Though it probably would be a little less messy.)

Congratulations, Owen, on your one-year-at-home anniversary. We're glad we gotcha.

- Mom and Dad

Celebrating outside.

Beanie trying to get some face time with the camera.

Owen's "Gotcha Day" cake.

Yummy! This is WAY better than the pea soup you just tried to feed me!

Friday, March 6, 2009

march for babies 2009

Last year, we were humbled by the generous support that we received from our friends and family to walk in the March of Dimes, March for Babies. So, this time around, we decided to set a bigger goal, and ask that you not only sponsor our team with your donation, but that you also consider giving your time.

In addition to our monetary goal of $5,000, our other goal this year is to recruit 112 walkers to join our family team, Two Early.

112??? Are you serious?

After the longest months of our lives, we finally had BOTH Owen and Eliot home - after 112 days.

This year, as we watch in awe how our twins have progressed since their scary roller coaster journey through the NICU, we want to celebrate the 112 days of fighting and thriving by having one person represent each of their days in the hospital.

Join our team, Two Early, so you can help the March of Dimes continue its fight. Walk with us on April 25th and support babies around the country - those born prematurely or with a birth defect; babies who didn't survive; and healthy, full-term babies, as well.

There's a place for everyone. So, put on your sneaks, and grab your spouse, partner, friends, neighbors, kids, and walk with us - five miles around the beautiful city of Atlanta. When you arrive back at Centennial Park, there will be music, dancing, food, and games and toys for the kids. It is one huge celebration.

To be a part of Team Two Early, email me for more information, visit our team site, or simply click the purple banner to the right to sign up or donate. If you can't join us for the walk, please consider sponsoring our team with a donation. Every dollar makes a difference.

Thank you so much for your support.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Sunday, March 1, 2009

HUGE news

Well, I hope you're sitting down because this is the biggest news ever. I mean it. This is HUGE.

Eliot said her first word on Friday. That's right. Her first perfect, beautiful word with a VERY clear voice.

Now, for those of you who are just catching on to the Eliot Axt saga, you probably think that a 14-month old baby should have babbled long ago, but . . . to put it mildly, sweet baby girl has had "issues" with her throat.

No one can forget Eliot's dramatic heart surgery in January '08 that saved her life, but paralyzed her left vocal cord. (God those days were rough.) We had already researched a procedure to pump her paralyzed cord full of collagen to give her a voice before she went to kindergarten in four years. FOUR years!!??!

Add to this a severe case of acid reflux that causes Elie to spit up over twenty times a day and gives her a constant swollen, sore throat. Here is a baby who completely gave up eating and using her voice because, quite simply, it just hurt. She has never muttered anything even remotely close to a comprehensible word. Ever.

Plus, there was talk - ironically, just last week - that there might be a neurological problem behind Elie's lack of talking. Possibly her brain wasn't able to process that her mouth and breath needed to work simultaneously. "Imagine watching someone run and having no idea where to start." That's how the therapist explained it to me.

So, not only is Elie crawling all over the house AND talking now, her reflux also seems to be calming down a bit (I am knocking on wood as I write this because I SO want it to be true, and not just me making up PollyAnna scenarios in my head). Could it be? Could it be that things are starting to come together for Elie Mak? Please, please, please.

I've got a clip to share of Eliot saying ma-ma. She is also saying ba-ba (her grandfather's name), but I haven't caught that on tape yet. But, you know what? Only having one word - this word - her first word - caught forever on tape . . . well, forgive me for being selfish, but ma-ma is just fine with me.