Tuesday, November 2, 2010

September Happenings

September Happenings:

Labor Day weekend some how turned into a quiet weekend for us and we got to enjoy some down time, just the three of us.

Below, Charlie was playing in the porch. Our screened porch turned into a wonderful blessing this year, as it provided Charlie with a great, but covered, outdoor area to play and ride his bike and run around outside, without being directly in the sunlight all the time. It also kept him contained and allowed Mommy and Daddy to sit outside with him or to be inside cleaning, cooking, etc. while Charlie played safely!

Over Labor Day weekend, Kenny and I took Charlie on a walk (with his bike) to a park in our neighborhood that is kind of tucked in between some houses. He loved it and didn't want to leave when it started raining. We enjoyed the time outside, in the cool weather, getting a walk in with our little buddy.

At the end of September, we spent an afternoon at Lakewood Forest Preserve for their annual Farm Heritage Show. It's a perfect day event, full of interesting things for Charlie to see.

Kenny braved the petting zoo with Charlie. Charlie didn't want to leave!

Watching a guy load his "big actor" (big tractor) on his trailer. Great excitement for the 2 year old and the 36 year old alike.

While we are trying to teach Charlie to be respectful of others vehicles/equipment on display at shows, this one was a little more accessible. Charlie LOVED being able to sit in the wheel.

Dear God: Please let Mommy and Daddy take this one home with us. I would LOVE it! Thank you, Charlie

Our little buddy!

And a family shot!

This one wasn't on display, but Charlie wanted to check it out anyway.

And finally, we've been working on this for months now, just when Charlie has interest. Sometimes he is VERY interested at home and sometimes not so much. At school though, he seems to always at least want to try. We don't push it too much, but try to just let him learn at his own pace. Eventually, he'll get there.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

August Happenings!

To play catch up, here's what some of our photographed August happenings...

We went to Brianna's birthday party and Reese and Charlie had some good play time there. Notice Charlie's shoes...Kenny wasn't there to stop him from wearing girls shoes and I thought it was fairly funny.

We had another play date at the splash park with the Carlins and the Youngs. Seriously, we love that place!

Charlie and Gwen enjoying the sandbox.

Ava is the best at playing with the little ones. We love her so much for spending good time with Charlie. Some days, I think of hiring her to come over and play with him. :)

Not sure why this picture won't flip...but it's all four of the kiddos.

Late in the month, we went to the Orphan Car Picnic...why does it have to be so stinkin' hot some days?!

Charlie enjoyed the cars this year.

A bus (or bis as Charlie calls them!)

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Monday, September 27, 2010

Splash Park

In August, we discovered a great splash park near our house. It's really cheap and really quiet on Sunday mornings, so the perfect place to bring Charlie to let him run and play. I only wish we had found it sooner in the summer. I'm soooo looking forward to many wonderful days here next summer!!

Charlie and Reese playing in the sand.

Charlie and Reese playing on the slide.

Sunday, September 26, 2010


He loves this bike!!!

Botanic Garden

In July, we spent a HOT day at the Botanic Garden with friends, enjoying the sites and catching up with our buddies we don't see very often. The gardens are great to let the kids run around in while the adults talk.

Jill/Claire, Gwennie, Ava, Charlie

Playing in the foutain


Ava and Charlie

Monday, August 30, 2010

2 Years...

June 2010

Two years ago our little family began this adventure into the brain tumor world and our lives were changed. Some days, it seems like it all just happened yesterday. Sometimes, I find myself missing Chicago and going to appointments and the comfort of the hospital and staff. Not that we mind not going as often, but that it has become such a part of who we are, it feels odd, in a way, when we have a big gap between visits. At the same time, we are thankful for those gaps because they symbolize success and health and progress. The days leading up to this anniversary were so much better than last year...last year, it was hard...the remembering everything that was going on. I still remember, we still talk about it, but it's easier this year. We have more peace with all of it and our lives are moving forward in a positive, wonderful direction. Not everything is perfect...in fact, some things are far from it, but we are happy and that is more important than anything else.

We will always celebrate these moments, each year, because they deserve to be celebrated. Kenny deserves to be celebrated. And always, on August 29, we spend the day thinking of our Dr. C and all of the work he did that day, to make Kenny well again.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

A BIG Change for Charlie

July 16 was Charlie's last day of the home daycare he was in since October 2008. We made the decision to switch him to a local preschool/daycare for many reasons, but in part because we wanted him to have a preschool experience, as we did growing up. It just so happens that this preschool/daycare also does before and after school care when he goes to grade school. It's perfect for us and so far we are thrilled with the change. It was sad to leave the home daycare, but sometimes change is necessary.

Charlie's last "report card" from the home daycare.

July 21, 2010: Charlie on his first day of "school." We call it school so he will get used to the idea. We got him a backpack that he picked out (Elmo) and we put his snacks and froggy for nap time in it each day. It's a good way to carry all the stuff he brings home each day too. He looks like SUCH a big boy now, but so cute still too. Where is my baby going? The 2 year old class he is in is kind of a pre-preschool, similar to what I did when I was 2. They have organized, structured activities each week that revolve around a theme.

It seems each week that they have some sort of outside group come in to do something fun. He's already seen Hula dancers, had Bike day, Splash day, a Petting Zoo visit (with a pony ride), Camping week (they nap in sleeping bags and try "camping" foods) and a carnival. We see so many positive changes in him at home like potty training interest, using more and more words (and trying ones he hasn't before) and general attention to things.


These three lovely baby deer made their home in about a 4 neighbor radius in July and continue to make appearances in August. Some times Momma is with and sometimes not, but they love the shade of our maple tree and the apple tree in our neighbor's yard is so close when they need a snack. Charlie LOVES to see his friends, the DEER, when the come for a visit. DEER is shouted though the house when he sees them and he blows kisses and waves. They really are his friends, you know!

I - sa

What is an i-sa you ask? Charlie's word for Fire Truck (and some times police car too). We aren't sure where he gets some of these words, but it's clearly what he is talking about. Aunt Donna got him this cool i-sa for his birthday and he loves it.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Happy Fourth of July!

We had a peaceful, simple, low key, three person family Fourth of July and it was wonderful. Relaxing parade perfect for a two year old, nice peaceful afternoon enjoying naps and movies and a nice dinner, including Charlie trying corn on the cob for the first time...he loves it!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Charlie's Two...Part 2!!!

The day after Charlie turned two, we had a great Family Birthday Party for him. Our little guy sure is loved by many.

Charlie enjoyed some good playtime with cousin Penelope. She is just a few months younger than him and they do like to play with each other.

Hhmmm... which present should I dive into first?

Penelope and Charlie checking out the tractor flashlight.

Look Mommy!!!

CAKE!!! We had dirt cake again, but this time in a more traditional form. Always a little special to have this as I remember many Deram parties with dirt cake...one of Josh's favorites.

Uncle Lloyd, Grandpa, Uncle Jim, Charlie, Cousin Lauren, Mary Lou

He blew out the candle!!

Having Cake with Grandma.

Penelope with her Grandma

Papa, Aunt Kathi, NimmyNimmy, Uncle Lloyd, Mommy

Jer, Penelope and Mary

Cousin Lauren and Charlie

Charlie and Uncle Ted

Charlie and Penelope

Cousin Lauren and Charlie (on his new tractor phone).

Grandpa, Charlie and Grandma

Papa, NimmyNimmy and Charlie

Mommy, Daddy and Charlie