Mission 365 - Day 26

Shay was at Sick Kids this past Wednesday to have ear tubes put in both of his ears.  For the past three months, Shay has been hearing next to nothing due to having fluid in both of his ears.  It has been very frustrating for him and for us, as we have seen a definite plateau in his development and an actual regression in his expressive language skills over the past few months. 

Since getting the tubes on Wednesday, we have a changed boy - he is hearing 100 times better now and some of the tone in his legs has actually decreased - not sure if this a conicidence or not, but whatever the case - I will take it - yaaaa! We really need to work on his articulation skills now as he has developed some pretty bad habits in the last few months - thank goodness, are are starting an eight week block with our amazing Speech and Language Pathologist Caroline this coming week!

In the meantime, Shay is enjoying a little bit of lounge time with his beloved Tiger as he recovers :)

Mission 365 - Day 25

Keeping Ciaran's glasses on at home has been a bit of a battle.  Not surprisingly, they are not having any problems with having Ciaran keeping them on at daycare.  Above is how I am more than likely to find Ciaran wearing his glasses at home - as you can see, they are a very nice accessory :)  Thank goodness for pure plastic bendable glasses - they take a lot of unnecessary stress out of my life!

Mission 365 - Day 24

Ciaran in his walker at daycare with his new glasses on.  SOO grown up.

Mission 365 - Day 23

Rowan is seven weeks now and is starting to be able to entertain himself.  His favourite toy at the moment is this Haba teether.  He likes to "shake, shake, shake" it and try to put it in his mouth - but he is not quite coordinated enough yet to figure out just exactly how to do this...I am sure he will figure it out in no time. 

Mission 365 - Day 22

We have a large assortment of Thomas Trains in our house.  Despite the fact, that there are plenty of trains for everyone - Shay feels the need to hoard them to himself.  Today while cleaning up, I noticed that a whole bunch of the trains were missing.  After doing a quick search, I found at least twenty trains stashed underneath the couch.  Shay has been hiding them so that he does not have to share with Ciaran - he is too funny!!!!

Mission 365 - Day 21

Here is another one of Rowan's fans - Orla.  She enjoyed some quality time with Rowan on Easter Sunday.  Conor, Orla and Ciara organized an egg hunt for Ciaran and Shay - they are such caring cousins.

Cousinly Love...Orla and Rowan

Ciaran having a laugh with Conor
Despite a quieter Easter Sunday than usual, Ciaran clearly enjoyed his day!

Mission 365 - Day 20

Today Ciaran and Shay participated in the annual Egg Hunt on our street.  They had an absolute blast!  There was probably close to 40 kids under the age of five who live on Jezero Crescent participating.  The boys did a fantastic job keeping up in their walkers!
On your mark, get set...GO!

 Lizzie, Ciaran and Shay's friend came over for a visit with her parents Angi and Ivan.  The boys really enjoyed their time with their little friend.  Unfortunately, nearly all of my pictures from the playdate were overexposed (and from Easter Sunday - arghhh! :(

Below is a picture of Lizzie enjoying the drilling game.

Mission 365 - Day 19

Five years ago a family tradition started, little did we realize at the time how different the tradition would be five years later.  My goodness, have things ever changed.  Five years ago, Cris and I went down to Hamilton to go out a fish and chip dinner in Hamilton for Good Friday.  At the time, Tasha and I were pregnant with Ciaran, Shay and Kellan.  We have continued the tradition each Good Friday since - just adding a few kids (Ciaran, Shay, Kellan, Lyla, Rowan and the sweet little baby in Tasha's tummy) in the mix along the way.
Here are a few pics from Good Friday.  Unfortunately, this weather was not as nice as it was last year and we stayed inside for the day.  Below are a couple of pics of the kids playing and some good old fashioned cousinly love...

Beep beep...

Vroom, vroom...

Lyla - a happy and spirited little thing :)

Cousinly love :)


Group shot
Kellan sharing the love...

We had an amazing day!!! So look forward to this tradition continuing long into the future!!

Mission 365 - Day 18

We go through a lot of berries in this house.  The boys demand berries for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  We should maybe consider buying stocks in a berry farm.  Here is a typical breakfast for Ciaran and Shay. 

On a side note, the parallel bars that Granda made for the boys have been a huge success.  Everytime I go into the playroom, the boys are playing at their train table rather than lying on the floor.  Cris and I are thrilled that they are using them and that they are so functional!!!

Mission 365 - Day 17

Completely in love...no further words necessary...

Granda reading to the boys - one of their favourite things to do :)

Mission 365 - Day 16

 Someone is starting to smile....and each one makes my heart melt a little more...

First smile caught on film :)

Mission 365 - Day 15

Today was definitely a bit of a tear-jerker in the Parreira-Sneyd household.  My amazing Dad made parallel bars for the playroom so that Shay and Ciaran can get some functional walking / standing practice in.  The boys LOVED their new bars!  Shay who struggles more with his legs and who is aware of his struggles was so proud of himself - for a half an hour or so - every few minutes - you could hear Shay yelling from the playroom with pride - "I am STANDING'

He absolutely melted my heart tonight.  Absolutely melted my heart....thank you Dad from the bottom of our hearts for doing anything you can do to help our boys be the best that they can be - we are beyond thankful!.
Soooo proud...THANKS Granda!!!

A picture says a thousand words....

Mission 365 - Day 14

Tracy, Shelley, Sach, Andie, Christine, and Me :)

Mission 365 - Day 13

We went to Tangles today for a much needed haircut from Rosaleen - she is amazing!!  Afterwards, we had a pretty low key day at home as it was a miserable day outside.  Yes - April 16th - and it snowed today - like seriously - I am so done with winter.  Ciaran and Shay are also dying for Spring - the boys are desperate to get outside....soon - very soon, here's to hoping!!!

Sweet sweet Ciaran

Mission 365 - Day 12

I have to say that all of the stress and anxiety that went along with my pregnancy with Rowan was more than worth it!  Rowan brings an immense amount of joy and love into our lives on a daily basis.  I can't imagine our lives now without him.  Thank you Rowan for making our precious family more complete.

Rowan - looking older every single day :)

Mission 365 - Day 11

Mommy Charms

I had this meaningful and beautiful necklace made after the birth of Rowan from Lisa Leonard Designs in the US.  I am so thrilled with how it turned out.  Cris and I discussed which symbol we would choose for each of our boys - our choices were easy.

For Ciaran, we chose a star.  We chose a star because Ciaran is a shining star in our lives.  The joy and light that he brings to our life on a daily basis is immense.  There is something so special about our little Ciaran - and words just can't describe what I mean - but I know others who know Ciaran, know exactly what I am trying to get at.

For Shay we chose a heart because day in and day out - Shay is all heart in everything that he does.  He always gives 200% - his heart is in everything he does - he demonstrates determination, drive, and heart...what a perfect representation of what we admire in our beautiful middle son.  He inspires me on a daily basis - and my heart swells with pride every time I have the opportunity to witness his determination in action.

And finally for Rowan, we chose a circle.  Rowan has helped complete our family.  I feel as if Rowan has helped our family come full circle.  There is a reason that Rowan is here with us and I know that he is going to play such a significant role in our family dynamics.  I feel so blessed to have him in our lives and I so look forward to celebrate his uniqueness in our family on a daily basis.

Mission 365 - Day 9

Rowan is already five weeks old and he is growing like a weed!  I already find myself wanting to slow down time - as my little man is getting way too big - way too fast.  I feel so blessed that I am in the mindset to know just how very special this time is.  I am absolutely loving being a stay at home mom again - life is good - life is real good!!!

The Shippel family gave Riley this beautiful Big Bear that we will be using to show Rowan's growth from month to month.  A few of my friends have used this idea to track their kids growth - and I think that it is a pretty cool idea. My goal is to get the pictures at 1 month, 2 month, 3 months, etc.  Next pic will be posted on the 8th of May - and we will get on a monthly schedule. Look how much he has changed in only 3 weeks - it is crazy how fast babies develop at this stage.  Stay tuned....

Rowan - March 20 - nearly two weeks old

Rowan - April 14 - 5 weeks old

Mission 365 - Day 10

We spent the day at Sick Kids today with all three boys having Ciaran and Shay's ears checked for their hearing capacity and to determine if there is fluid in their ears which could be affecting their hearing.  For the past two months or so, it has appeared that Shay is not hearing very well.  He has been a lot more behavioural, has not been listening to Cris or I, and has often spoken to us in gibberish, a baby voice or via  whispers.  We have been quite worried about him as we have seen quite a regression in his speech and language development in the past few months.  We were both very anxious to get some answers today.  

Ciaran's ears looked good and appears to be hearing within the normal range.  As suspected, Shay's ears are surrounded by fluid - and is causing no middle ear function - he did not respond to hearing test, however did respond to bone conduction test which leads the audiologist to believe that the fluid is contributing to a significant hearing loss.  Luckily, they considered Shay's situation serious enough to get us an appointment imminently - he will have tubes put in on Wednesday April 27th which should solve the problem.  The
ENT believes that fluid would have contributed to Shays lack of progression lately, his speech(talking gibberish, whispering,etc), and some of his behavior. We are so relieved and are so looking forward to having our "old" Shay back very soon.

Shay did share a bit of his mischievious side tonight at dinner. 

Cris told him that he would not get strawberries and pineapple until he finished all of his dinner... so, when Cris was not looking, Shay quietly starting stashing his green beans into his glass of milk.

When Cris approached him to see how Shay was doing with his dinner - Shay thought he was caught in the act - so he picked up his glass and started drinking his milk and green bean concoction - I couldn't contain my laughter - how is that for negative reinforcement :) 

Mission 365 - Day 8

Rowan is already loved by so many of his cousins and friends. We are so lucky to have so many special people around who are eager to help out with both the boys and our newest family member - Rowan.  Here are a few of Rowan's favourite people...

Rowan and his cousin Cassie

Rowan and Riles
Ciara bathing Rowan - she is a pro already :)

Mission 365 - Day 7

Cris here for a 'guest' post on the Mission...

Today I took Rowan to visit his grandfather for the first time.  My dad has not been well for the last little while and missed out on the family visit to our home so I took a few hours today to take Rowan to him.   As you can see from the picture he was absolutely delighted and proud.  It took a while to get Rowan back from him as he didn't want to let him go!  Hopefully we will see him more often in the near future.


Mission 365 - Day 6

Orion, Rowan and Adelaide just hanging out...

Today Rowan's two friends Orion and Adelaide came over for a play date.  Adelaide and Orion are John and Michele's twins born three weeks before Rowan.  They are sweet little things and we were so happy that we were finally able to meet them.  We so look forward to spending time with them in the upcoming year.

Mission 365 - Day 5

"On Friday, we usually go to see Caroline, Katherine or Becky for Speech which we LOVE!"  Today, Ciaran had an appointment with his eye surgeon Dr. Budning so we were not able to go to Speech.  Shay went to daycare for 9:00 am with Granda and Ciaran went to his appointment with Mom and Dad.  When we got to the appointment, we found out that we would be seen by one of Dr. Budning's partners today - Dr. Pickering.  She was great at explaining where Ciaran is at with his vision.  Basically, his vision in his right eye is -3.0.  Our goal is to try to strengthen his right eye to prevent it from crossing again and to develop more function in the weaker eye.  Next steps is to have Ciaran start wearing his glasses more consistently and he will be patched for two hours a day to try to strengthen his weaker eye.

Patching used to be so easy when Ciaran was a baby...I am thinking we will be in for quite a battle now.  I will keep you posted :)

Mission 365 - Day 4

"On Thursdays, we go to see Keiri and Michelle.  Then we go to see Carmela, Oriana and Desiree at school.  After school, we head over to Nana and Granda's for a delicious dinner and of course - a bowl of strawberries and ice cream.  Thursdays is one of our favourite days of the week as we get to see so many of our favourite people"

Ciaran having his Theratogs put on by Keiri.  The Theratogs help stabalize Ciaran's hips which helps him with gait patterning
I decided to spoil myself a little bit today.  While the boys were at school today, I decided to get my hair cut and coloured as it has been driving me crazy lately.  I arrived at 11:00 and left Tangles right before 2:00 pm.  I brought Rowan with me and as per usual - he was a dream.  I had to include a pic of what Rowan looked like for the whole three hours that I was getting my hair done...

How lucky am I...

Mission 365 - Day 3

"On Wednesday, we are busy!  We see Judy in the morning before school to practice our listening and language development.  Then after school, we go and see Daniella and Lareina for Physiotherapy and Occupational Therapy.  We love Wednesdays - we work hard while having a lot of fun...
developing finger strength with tongs
Oh...that's better!!!

...practicing scissor skills...

developing fine motor skills while having fun playing Tricky Tree

practicing pre-writing skills with stickers and crayons...

concentrating for perfection...

developing strength while writing on mirrors - how fun is that!!

...and shooting off rockets for reinforcement...how cool!