Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Holiday Highlights

While I am really glad to be back in the "regular routine", we did have some good family time during the holidays.

Because we were able to spend so much concentrated time with the Bird, we were really able to see how much progress she's making lately.

Here's a couple of examples:

  • Lily surprised us by unwrapping one gift without any help at all.  Of course, she had more than one wrapped gift but hey, it's a start!
  • She rediscovered the trampoline and really enjoyed some good time bouncing in the backyard.
  • She had lots of moments of calm, "chill out time"when she was perfectly content to just lay beside us in the bed or watch TV with us. (this is not normal for her!)
  • She even fell asleep on my dad's lap one night (a highly unusual event) and I think this might have been his best Christmas gift.
  • We have taken lots of walks on the Town Lake Hike & Bike Trail but this week, Lily finally noticed the ducks.  She took great delight in feeding them several times when we were out walking and it was fun to watch her taking it all in.

Of course, we still had moments when autism, and all that entails, reared its ugly head.  

On Christmas Day, we went over to my in-laws for dinner.  My parents were there.  So was Ryan's sister, her husband, and their son.  Of course, my in-laws were there and so were we.  

Twelve people in all.  Not too many.  And only two little kids, Lily being one of them.

Lily was doing fine until we sat down to open gifts before eating.  

After about five minutes, she was done and ready to move on to something else.  We let her have the iPad so we could finish watching each other open gifts.  

That worked for another ten minutes or so then she was ready to head back home. 

She started pulling us to the front door.  

We started trying to distract. 

Cue meltdown.

Now my mother-in-law has her table beautifully set so that all of us can sit and eat together.

Nice idea but it just wasn't going to work this year.

Reagan and I ended up taking our dinner plates and Lily upstairs to the gameroom, where it was nice and quiet and looked the same as it always does.  Lily crawled in her favorite comfy chair with the iPad while Reagan and I ate and softly chatted.  In a little while, Lily had regrouped and was ready to eat, which she also did upstairs.  

After about thirty minutes, Lily went to the baby gate and motioned for me to open it.  Then she went downstairs and rejoined the group like nothing at all had happened.

Go figure.

As for the big girls, we never let them come downstairs on Christmas morning until we are awake and up and have cameras at the ready.  You can tell how thrilled Reagan is about this, even though she's been doing it for fifteen years...

But she did recover enough to take on her Dad in a little Just Dance 3.

So.  Did we have some lows over the break?  


But did we have some really wonderful highs, too?

Most definitely.

And it's those really wonderful highs that get us through those lows.


  1. I've been watching your photo stream on Instagram and your week looked picture perfect to me.

    Welcome back for the new year!

  2. I LOVE, LOVE LOVE the pictures of your dad and Lily and Lily and the ducks!! They are beautiful. She is so adorable - give her a huge hug from me.

    It's kind of a little tug to the heart when you have to give up something because of the "m" word but it sounds like you handled it perfectly. I love how she just decided she was ready to rejoin the group like nothing was amiss.

    And yes, always, always the highs do get us through the lows! <3

  3. man. . . your Christmas day with Lily sounds sooo much like my Christmas day with Lily.

    Great picture of her with your dad.

  4. That last sentence is the best.

    When we had everyone over to our house for Thanksgiving the Friday meal was too much for Alex. We ate in the office with the doors closed, with headsets on, watching How its Made. And after 40 minutes he came out none the worse for wear.

  5. Welcome to the New Year! Yes, the highs always get us through the lows! We had some pretty lows through the holidays, but the high was seeing our grandson, Will, baptized January 1, 2012 by our awesome pastor!! What a way to start the new year! The fact that Will had to wait a couple weeks to get baptized just increased our anticipation (not to mention the fact it gave me time to get back in town from being with my sister who lost her pastor/husband Nov 30.). So we are truly blessed to see how God is always in control and loves us so very much! Loved the picture of your dad/Lily, not to mention Reagan and Ryan! LOL!

  6. Karla - I started following you on Instagram, too! Happy New Year!

    Karen - I have to remind myself that doing things differently is perfectly fine....

    Jim - It kind of reminds me of your photo of Lily with your dad (after her EEG).... so sweet when they're tired and snuggly

    Lizbeth - Just letting go of the expectations of the holidays seems to make them more bearable for me. In the long run, who really cares where I sat to eat??

    Teresa - I heard from Ryan about your sister's loss and was so sorry about that. But I can think of no better way to start a new year than watching your grandson begin a new life in Christ! Happy New Year!

  7. DELIGHTED that you had so many special moments! Love those pics of Lily and her grandparents- precious! That scene with the Christmas dinner sounds very familiar- glad she was able to regroup and that you were able to stay and enjoy. :)


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