Sunday, February 26, 2012

Wonderful things are happening!

What a whirlwind these past few weeks have been! Casey and Connor began participating in Special Olympics Young Athletes and I am ecstatic! This is a wonderful opportunity to get the boys to be more active, to be more social (not that they really need the help in that arena) and for Matt and I to meet other parents who share in the blessings we do. This past Saturday they had a basketball themed day and they seemed to enjoy rolling the balls and catching. Both are still getting used to being around so many new people and they do tend to cling to their volunteers. Overall they are doing great and I think they will grow to love this activity!

C and C on a trampoline at the first session of Young Athletes.

Casey has started walking almost exclusively now. He does still crawl when he wants to get somewhere fast but for the most part he is upright and trucking. It is such a wonderful sight to watch my little miracle man going strong! We go to BJ's about once a week and he wants to walk all over the HUGE warehouse store. So... we let him. We have been waiting a very long 26 months for this milestone and we are encouraging him as much as possible. It is so heartwarming to see the pride and joy on his face when he is walking and exploring. It makes me a little teary. LOVE IT!

Connor is starting to make some strides in the walking department. He had a spiral fracture in his left tibia when he was 18 months old and he had to wear a cast for 1 month and I think that has caused more of a delay than just the low muscle tone but he is showing a lot of interest in keeping up with his very busy brother. Lord help me find the right pair of running shoes for when both of these boys are walking! It will certainly be an adventure! Connor managed about 7 steps a few times tonight so I know he's not far off from being far more mobile than he is now. SMILES!

We have been working on some spoon feeding now and Casey and Connor enjoyed some vanilla pudding the other night. It was everywhere but they are making progress using a spoon. I guess they just refuse to eat anything that looks like it may be remotely healthy- pudding they'll dig in and actually find their mouths. I'm calling it a win!

Casey LOVES vanilla pudding! I think some even made it in his mouth!!

Connor is not quite as enthusiastic but he did eat it eventually!

Well, that's about all the update I have for tonight. I am pretty tired after a busy day. The baby is growing well (and quickly!) and I am starting to feel the drag of being close to the 3rd trimester!

As always, thanks for reading and visiting and feel free to email or comment! I LOVE hearing from you!


Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day!

Today is a day that you are supposed to celebrate the love in your life. I celebrate the love I feel for my family every single day. I am so blessed with a wonderful husband, 2 beautiful and amazing little boys and every other person in my family is outstanding! It's a great life I lead.

In honor of Valentine's day, I made monkey see and monkey do heart shaped pancakes this morning. Apparently they were the wrong shape and therefore not suitable for eating. The dog loved them. I guess in addition to food preferences there are now shape preferences to contend with. Good times!

Never said they were pretty!!

During the boys nap time I made a new piece of wall art for our home- also along the Valentine's Day theme. I was inspired by something I saw on Pinterest. (shocking, I know!) and went to investigate the blog where it originated. You can see her version here: Adorable, right??

I decided to add my own little twist to the project and this is what I came up with:

I love how it turned out. Now I just have to figure out where to hang this!

Two more things before I go:

1. A great picture of Matthew holding our miracle men. Nothing says "LOVE" to me like watching my husband be the awesome father that he is. Every time he holds our boys my heart smiles.

And finally... A good friend of mine's daughter Kristen made a beautiful video about what her brother Alex means to her. Alex also has Down syndrome. Kristen is a freshman in college and she is already changing the world in amazing ways. I am honored to know her and her family. If you look closely, you'll see a few good shots of my miracle men. Be prepared though- GET THE KLEENEX ready!

Monday, February 13, 2012

These are the days...

I have been thinking a lot lately about changing the blog. When I first started this blog it was so important to me to have a place to write about C&C and all the things I was feeling being a new mother and being new to the world of Down syndrome. Back then it was really all-consuming. As time has passed I find I am now used to this life and celebrating it rather than coping with it I feel like I need to change things HERE to reflect the change I feel in my heart.

I still want to share things about DS but I find it to be less of a focus in my life- it is taking a back seat to raising two very active little boys, getting ready for baby #3, and living life to the fullest and in the best way possible.

That said, I want to start including more things about what we as a family enjoy. I am an avid crafter and reader, Casey and Connor are just getting ready to begin Special Olympics Young Athletes, we love cooking (and eating) and just being together. So, in order to REALLY show people who don't know how normal my life is- I want to share just that. The normal, every day stuff with a nice mix of information about Down syndrome, other disabilities and things to raise awareness. AND of course- TONS of great things about my miracle men- after all- Casey and Connor are the real stars in our world.

Connor and Casey say HI!

I hope you will continue on our journey with us and grow to like the changes. I feel good about this.

I have been keeping really busy the last few weeks trying to get ready for Reagan. I have been crafting like crazy and trying to organize the house so we have room for a whole other person. This is no small feat. Casey and Connor have SO MUCH STUFF! I decided to combat this problem by assembling cube shelves for the living room. I was inspired by friend Jeannette and her awesome living room where everything has a place and her little boy Adam can find anything he wants to play with easily. What a difference!

BEFORE: A huge jumble of toys in a 55 gallon tote.

AFTER: Everything has a place and I am LOVING it!

So, with that tackled, I got to work on some pieces for the nursery. Reagan's room will be Gray and Pink! Thus far I have made the following:

This is a small side table I painted. It has butterflies on it each featuring a different quality or value I want to instill in our new daughter. Too many girls are brought up believing that they should be princesses or (this one makes me shudder) a DIVA. In our house, we want Reagan to grow up knowing the importance of honesty, integrity, faith, love, fun, strength and more. This table will serve as a reminder to her that life is about more than superficial things, that a strong moral foundation is a gift no one can take away.

These are just some simple letters I painted with white acrylic paint and used rub on transfers to spell her first, middle and last names. I added some pre-painted wood embellishments I found at Pat Catan's for $.33/each. I love how they turned out.

My final project was inspired by something I found on Pinterest. If you aren't using Pinterest- you are missing out. I am beyond addicted but always inspired by ideas I see there. This is a great example.

I turned THIS:

Into THIS super cute storage cabinet!

Enough of my crafting. I'll leave you with a Casey and Connor update- they are both tackling going DOWN the stairs. It's pretty fantastic and I am ALMOST past the utter terror I feel watching them go down the stairs. Ehh, what's a few more gray hairs?


As always- emails welcome at

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Hello again...

Sorry for the gap between posts but there has been much going on around the Wilkinson household. First, I want everyone to know that we found out on January 20th, that our June baby is going to be a beautiful little GIRL! We are ecstatic and can't wait to meet her. We have decided her name will be Reagan Delaney. All results from her ultrasound look great and everything is measuring perfectly. While we did not get any prenatal testing with this pregnancy I feel like everything is so different this time around. She is much more active than her brothers were at this point and though the boys showed no soft markers for Down syndrome on any ultrasound I am feeling confident our little princess will be born without an extra chromosome. It's a gut feeling and I could definitely be wrong (it has been known to happen on occasion) I will love her regardless of her chromosome count if I am wrong. It doesn't matter. She is already adored- so much.

Casey and Connor are making huge strides every week. Connor is finally opening up verbally a little- he now says baby and he is beginning to walk more to keep up with his brother. Casey says dada and no and yay- though they both throw out words every once in a while that surprise both of us- Casey said down and Connor said toes but only once each.

This week both of our miracle men went down the stairs for the first time. That was a heart pounding experience for mom, believe me!

I never have posted much about the feeding issues we have with C&C but they are both incredibly picky eaters and refuse about 95% of what we offer them. They like crackers and toast and dry cereal. Rounding out their diet is yogurt and applesauce and an occasional chicken nugget but that is rare and only Casey eats those. Connor has lost some weight and we are constantly trying to figure out what they may eat. It turns out Casey is a HUGE fan of the chocolate chip cookie. See pictures below.

Connor is not a fan of the chocolate chip cookie. Note how clean he is after throwing said cookie to the dog.

And the search continues for more foods that these two will eat. It's an adventure.

In other areas of our lives- On January 24th, Declan Simon, a good friend of my family died. He had battled cancer for a long time but was taken by a staph infection he got while in the hospital. It was a big loss for many including my mom who had known him for many, many years. Declan was a good hearted man, a devout Catholic, an amazing drummer, a great father and friend and most importantly an outstanding person. He was also a big advocate for Down syndrome, volunteering at many events hosted by the Up Side of Downs. He was very much looking forward to the Buddy Walk this year. He adored Casey and Connor and they adored him. Declan was laid to rest wearing his blue and yellow Buddy Walk/ Down syndrome awareness bracelet. He is greatly missed.

Finally, I want to take this opportunity to let you all know about a very special little girl who lives just one town over from my family. Her name is Quinn and she is 5 months old. Quinn has Junctional Epidermolysis Bullosa. I first learned of EB on the blog "EB"ing a Mommy- - Tripp Roth was an inspiration to many and his mother, a true hero in every sense of the word. I cannot fathom what Quinn and her family are going through with this awful disease but I want them to know that they are not alone and that there are people praying for them. Please keep them in your prayers. Locally, there will be a spaghetti dinner to benefit this little angel. If you would like to help and are not in the area to attend the dinner you can send a donation to:
Quinn R. Seymour Benefit
℅ Knights of Columbus
P.O. Box 2189
Hudson, OH 44236

Every. Single. Dollar. Helps. I realize that times are tough but having a child with extreme medical issues trumps most financial concerns the majority of us have. If you can help- please do. If you can't help financially share her story and hopefully someone you know can help. Thanks so much. If you would like to learn more about Quinn she has a Caring Bridge page that can be viewed here: . You will have to create a Caring Bridge login to view but worth it to follow her story. She is stunningly beautiful.

Ok friends, thank you for reading. Thank you for sharing in our journey. Every view of our blog warms my heart. Emails and comments ALWAYS welcome to