Friday, May 28, 2010

What Olivia is doing these days

Olivia has become very active since turning one year old! She is a pro at army crawling backward, pivoting, and rolling to get where she wants to go. She cannot go forward, and thus gets stuck when she runs into furniture or walls, but indecent days she has been trying to reach forward more and push with her legs. She is not going forward, but has the idea that forward exists and that it would be useful. Mommy spends a lot of time getting Olivia unstuck these days, as well as showing Olivia that forward is an option. We all are working on supported kneeling and bench sitting with Olivia, to help her with the bent knee position that she needs for crawling. This builds the muscles she needs as well as makes the neural connections to bend her legs. Preemies tend toward being extensor as they left their cramped quarters in the womb too early. We swaddled Olivia for nearly 2 months with her knees bent, and that probably helped prevent major issues. We also fought back arching early in olivia's life, and I think that the the therapies for that issue helped the extensor issue as well.

Olivia finally started clapping the other day! We had been working on this forever! But between low muscle tone and short arms it was not going well. Now she loves to clap and does a fine job! Yesterday while I wad preparing her meal, she sat at her sing a long stage and started clapping everytime they sang if you're happy and you know it clap your hands! And! She figured that out by herself! We did not teach her that! (but I wonder if Grandma did? I will have to ask.)

Olivia is not very interested in sleep these days. Where did our good sleeper go. I hope she returns soon! We are weaning her from her bedtime bottle as it seems to slow her progress to sleep and is not a necessary part of our soothing ritual any longer, as she seems soothed best by her stack of bedtime books.

All this activity has a slimming effect! Mommy had to add more calories for mommy, and Olivia is moving her pudginess around to more flattering locations! :-)

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Retirement Party - By Olivia

Daddy and Mommy said that I can Blog all I want during my birthday month, so here goes another post by me!

Apparently St John's Social Room is where all the partying is going on these days! Last weekend we went there for my First Birthday Party, and today we went there for Mommy's teacher's retirement party. It was so fun to see all the people and smile at them. I also liked getting a chance to meet so many people who helped make my Mommy who she is today. I had always wondered how Mommy was raised, and now I know. She was raised by really wonderful people and surrounded by lots of love. Sounds like a plan!

Here is a photo of me with Mommy, Grandma B and Mommy's teacher. She taught at St John's since 1970. That is Prehistoric Times for those of you who are wondering what the 1970's were.
This is me with Mommy and one of the Principals at St John's when Mommy was a little girl. Sister is a very nice lady and I really liked her pretty dress. Mommy says that Sister wears a habit. I think that means that she habitually wears dresses. I think that I will call my dress a habit from now on. Do you like my dress? I took this one to my party, but never changed into it. I DO like dresses!
This is me with Grandma B and Aunt Jo. They are really fun to be with! That is why I am laughing. I am learning how to sign Grandma. Comes in really handy for getting what I want! I need to learn to sign Aunt too! I have lots of wonderful Aunts!
This is me with one of the little boys that Mommy went to Grade School with. Those other cute little girls are his daughters. I met some other kids that Mommy went to school with. They are really nice. I wish I would have gotten my picture taken with Pam. I really liked her shirt and she was really nice.
I am not certain what I am going to do next weekend. Daddy and Mommy are celebrating their 23rd wedding anniversary and I have to plan something really fun for them. They have fun showing me around the world, and I love getting a chance to see the great world that awaits me!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Medjugorje Conference at Notre Dame

The Medjugorje Conference at Notre Dame will be streamed

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

My Birthday Party- By Olivia :-)

I would have written sooner, but I have been busy taking care of Mommy and Daddy and going to the doctor for my well baby check up. All three of us have colds!!! And you know what that means. Yes! I, Olivia, has to hold and cuddle with them to make them feel better. The doctor said that I will feel better soon and that my ears look healthy, so we all should be feeling better really soon. Sick parents are a bummer. But it is funny when they blow their nose. But it is not a bit funny when they wipe my runny nose!!!

So, about my party! It was so fun!!! There were so many people there and I love everyone of the people there!!! I think there were just under 60 people. It was loud and and there were lots of kids running around and lots of food and lots of playing and happy faces!!! Yeah!!! Perfect!!!! I remember that a year ago I did not like a lot ... make that ANY.... noise. But now I love a noisy party. Especially if that party is for me!!

So here are some photos from my party and a little bit about the party:

This is my cake!!! It had words on it that commemorated the special events in my first year of life: sitting, rolling, NICU, adoption, Baptism ect....
This is all the food for the big people! I ate my soft food, which is very delicious!
This is me with my sweet sweet cousin, Emily and her son Marcos, and my cousin, TJ!! Those boys are so fun!!! I loved pulling TJ's hair!!! He is a great cousin!!!!
This is my friend Lolo. She is the first friend I ever made who is also awesomely chromosomally enhanced just like me!!! Her Mommy is really awesome and so is her big sister!!! I bet that some of you reading this BLOG who also have awesome kids with T21 recognize my friend and her Mom from BC!!! Yay BC!!!!!
This is me with Grandma Kate. She and Grandpa bought me this cool wagon!!!! It is perfect for greeting my loyal subjects.... I mean wonderful guests.
This is me with my neighbors who are more like grandparents!!! I love them and I don't know what we would do without them !!!!! They are awesome!!!!!
Me and my adoring fans and my present from my cousin, MaryJane and Gregg :-)
This is me and Mommy with my cool cake that Daddy and the baker designed. It commemorated some of the highlights of my first year of life! Too cool!!!
This is me posing with some cool Baumgartners: left to right: Uncle Dick!! Grandpa!!! Anne!! Jack!! Me!!!!!!! Mommy!!! Y!!!!!!! And Uncle Doug!!!! Yay!!!!
This was really fun!! We all sat on the floor and played and opened my presents! I think we should do this again tomorrow! As soon as I got home from the party, I told Mommy that I was ready to go back. I had slept in the car on the way home, and was ready to rock n roll!!!!
Mommy's friend was holding me and her daughter got jealous and came up to her signing "Mommy". I think she was trying to remind her Mommy whose Mommy she was! I saw the whole thing!! And, I saw how it all worked, so now I am signing Mommy too! I had not been doing it even though Mommy and Daddy were teaching me. But now I sign Mommy and say Momma! And the great thing is that if I do this I get loads of attention and praise. So, I am planning on learning more signs and more talking, because I LOVE attention and praise!!! I have this thing figured out!!! Yay me!!!
This is me with my Aunt Suki. Yes! You have read about her!!! She is the sweetest aunt ever I think!!! She sent my Mommy flowers on her very first Mothers Day!!! Wow!!! I tell you!!! That meant more to Mommy with each passing day!!!! I love you Aunt Suki!!!!! :-) The scrapbooks of me from you and the wall hanging from you are so awesome!!!!
Now everyone take a good look! You cannot get 4 moore beautiful women together for a photo if you tried!!!! Mommy and Daddy love all four of us!! They say that they love all four of us moore and moore everyday!!!

This is me with my Aunt Jen. She is a Montessori teacher like my Mommy, so she knows just how to make me happy.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Sick Princess - By: Olivia

(notice the text message Princess on her t-shirt)
Hi Everyone.

It is me, Olivia again. I am posting again as I find it very therapeutic. This is SO NOT a good photo of me, because I have my VERY First Cold and as you can see I DO NOT feel well. Now I understand why Mommy and Daddy did not me to get one of these. They are nasty. My nose is running and running and running and then Mommy wipes my nose. I know she is trying to help, but honestly, I am OK with having runny nose all over my face. But she is not, so what is a girl to do. Last night I kept waking up and needing Mommy to soothe me and tell me that I was OK. I really like my crib and I really like to sleep so I was glad that after a little bit of rocking in the chair with Mommy, I felt calm enough to go back to sleep for a hour or two before I woke again needing Mommy to help me remember that I was going to be OK. I do like rocking with Mommy at night, but my crib is so much more comfortable.

And, one more thing just to get it off my chest. I am so glad that I don't have to go back to the cardiologist anymore, because that is where I caught this cold. And to top it off, Daddy caught the same cold and he had to get medicine from the doctor this morning. Good news is that Daddy will feel better by my party on Sunday. I hope I feel better too. And I sure hope that Mommy is feeling well, because she has a lot of work to do to make my party spectacular. Mommy has been preparing my party for some time now, hope everyone enjoys the party. I tried on all three of my party dresses yesterday. I LOVE dresses! I sat in front of my mirror and smiled and admired my beautiful dresses. I don't know which dress I am going to wear. I am taking all of them and perhaps I will wear all three. I don't mind changing clothes if it is to play dress up.

I am hoping that the next time I post, I am able to tell you all about good things and not about cardiologists and nasty colds. Perhaps I will tell you about my birthday party. I hope Daddy helps me with that, because I do my best work with Daddy. Mommy helped me with this one, and I don't get as funny when I compose with Mommy as I do with my silly Daddy who is so wonderful and handsome!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

1 year Cardiology Followup

It's me, Olivia, again. Since I am old enough to have a cardiologist, I convinced Dad I was old enough to post again. Today, I had my 1-year cardiology followup. Long story short, my heart is perfect - just like me. In fact, I blew the top off of the hospital's sweetness meter. If you are feeling charitable, the hospital is looking for donations to replace the one I broke. I hope they get one that can keep up with the awesome chromosonally-enhanced kids like me.

They had a really cool salt water fish tank in the waiting area. Here is Dad helping me get a good look. Fishy, Fishy
They first wanted to do an EKG. I said no way no how ... don't you get it ... I am not a 40-year-old man ... I am a sweet adorable 1-year-old girl ... I don't need no stinking EKG!!! Besides, Mom always says we don't put stickers on our bodies. They wanted to put tons of stickers on my perfect little body. I dealt with it ... I mean them. Boy did they feel bad when I laid the monster tears on 'em. They managed to do the EKG, but I cooperated in protest (should have seen me with my fist in the air in solidarity with ... someone, but I forget who).

The nice doctor then came in (after the evil nurse with the EKG machine left). I remembered the pretty doctor but she looked different than when I saw her before I was born. I look the same, not sure why she looks so different ... maybe it was the sack of fluid I was swimming in back then. Anyway, I digress, she and I really hit it off. But then again, how can anybody resist Miss Olivia. Flash those big brown eyes and I can get anything I want - except from the mean nurses. Going to have to find a new trick to wrap them around my little finger. I mean if I can turn Mom and Dad into such suckers ... there must be some way to control the nurses.

We then did an ultrasound. But before the ultrasound they gave me DRUGS - yes sireee - DRUGS. After that I didn't care much about anything. Ever wonder what I would looked like on drugs. Here ya go.
Let me tell you ... drugs on top of low muscle tone made me good for nothing. Even after the long ride home I still was falling over. Yes siree ... DRUGS will do it every time. Here's my awesome Mommy holding me before the ultrasound. I just love my Mommy!
Here I am getting my ultrasound. I was a perfect little angel. It was awesome - the young cutie who did my ultrasound when I was in the NICU did my ultrasound today. She must really like me to want to take pictures of my adorable heart twice.
Here I am checking out the cords. Dad, can I have my own ultrasound machine to play with?
Thats all for now.

Love and kisses to everyone!
- Sweet Baby O

Monday, May 10, 2010

Mothers Day

My sweet sweet sister in law from CA sent these gorgeous roses to me to celebrate my first Mothers Day. Olivia LOVES her Aunt Suki!!!! Aunt Suki will be a very special guest at Olivia's first birthday party as Aunt Suki is flying in from CA to help Olivia celebrate her first year of life! It would not be the same with out Aunt Suki there, so we are so excited that she will be there!
I wanted to post about my First REAL Mothers Day. Last year, I was merely a visitor of Olivia while she was in the NICU. Olivia would not be our foster daughter until she was released from the hospital and she would not be our prospective adoptive daughter until July and she would not be our daughter who we adopted until November. Therefore, I was not allowed to choose her clothes or make one single decision for her, except should I use two diaper wipes or one and the like. Yes! Bummer! This year I got to choose Olivia's clothes that she wore! And in honor of her friend Piper's birthday tomorrow, we chose her new ladybug Osh Kosh pants and a Baby Gap onesie. Later when we went to Olivia's first symphony, I added a Gymboree sweater to the outfit. Olivia loved the symphony! Well, it was not really a symphony, but a Suzuki Recital where her five year old cousin was playing the violin. Olivia really enjoyed all the live music! We need to find some symphony matinees to take her to!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

What An Awesome Birthday

Hello, its me - Olivia Annemarie. I am one-year-old today. Since I am so grown up, Daddy figured I could post and tell everyone about my awesome birthday. First off, I had a second tooth pop through today. Hopefully that will help all the awful teething pain to stop.

Here I am opening one of my awesome presents. I got lots of gifts ... haven't figured out whether it is because I turned one or because I am such a wonderful kid. Hmmm ... maybe that being a wonderful kid clause is for a different holiday.
Of course, I spent time playing with the new toys ... which is great because it left less time for physical therapy.
More gifts ... will the pile ever get smaller?
I got to see my Grandma B. She thinks I am a very special little girl.
Then "the adults" had me take this silly Polish test that is supposed to determine my future. Heck, I am Irish, did I have a choice in what I pick? I quickly grab the Bible after the shot glass ... I guess I can drink on Saturday and go to Church on Sunday.
I got this really cool Birthday plate with my name on it. It is almost as big as I am :-)
I also opened a bunch of cards
By this time I was pretty tired, so I got some kisses. I am kiss powered.
Then we took a road trip to St. Joe, MI. It was weird since I was sitting in the back seat all by myself facing forward. I kept telling Daddy this isn't the way it is supposed to work.
I ate my snack at an outdoor cafe. I realized that my parents have been depriving me of chocolate and coffee my whole entire life. Maybe one of you can talk some sense into them.
Then we went to see Lake Michigan. I had never seen it before. Boy is that one giant bathtub. Mommy told Daddy he couldn't dip my toes in the water. I guess that is because someone forgot to run the hot water long enough before filling it up.
Of course, more kisses to keep me going.
Then we went and sat on the beach. Once I realized how neato sand feels between the toes I had lots of fun. I also like pouring it out of my hand.
Dad got silly and buried one of my feet.

I hope all of you had a great day as well.

Now that I know how much fun birthdays are ... I am planning to have one every day!

Love, Olivia

Happy First Birthday Olivia!

Today is Olivia's First Birthday! It seems impossible that it has already been ONE year!
She has filled our lives with Joy and Wonder beyond belief! She is truly a Gift from God!

This is our first look at Olivia one year ago!!! Hard to believe it is the same little girl.
This photo was taken on her second day of life.
And these photos were taken recently. My goodness! How far Baby O has come!!!!

I would write a book entailing the wonders of Olivia and our life with her, and all sorts of interesting thoughts, but Olivia is done napping, so back to enjoying life with our precious sweet baby! (Olivia's first nurse would always call Olivia: Sweet Baby! And how appropriate!