Ryan's August '09 Blog

August 2, 2009 - Can you believe it is August already?  Where is this year going?  We hardly feel like we've enjoyed summer and now it is almost over.  But that means football season is right around the corner!  Only a month until the BSU vs. Oregon game on September 3.  Dad is very ready for college football to begin.

There is not much to write for this past week.  Things have been going good as usual.  We think Monday he was a little plugged up and tired from the weekend so he really didn't want to work much.  But by the end of the week he was back to normal.

This week we go to Grandma Connie's house.  We leave Wednesday and come back Monday.  We will get to see some of Mom's siblings, nieces/nephews that we have not seen in a couple years and Ryan will get to meet those he has not met yet.  We're nervous how he will do on the airplane and being in a strange place with people he really doesn't know so we'll be keeping a close eye out for any signs of stress/overstimulation.  Also have to make sure we have all our doctor's numbers in case anything happens.  Mom has been trying to put together what we'll be taking and man - that is lot of stuff to take.

August 15, 2009 - We had a nice trip to Grandma's house.  It was full of a lot of first's for Ryan.  The first one was the airplane ride on Wednesday the 5th.  We have a special strap that can be used on airplanes over a car seat and we're lucky it does because we found out our Britax car seat is big and a pain in airplane seats.  We got him in the seat and he did ok but as the plane pulled away from the gate and started moving he started fussing a little.  Then once we took off he really fussed.  We had a little Pediasure to give him to try to get him to swallow to keep his ears popping and we don't think he liked being forced to drink so that added to his fussiness.  Once we got up in the air there was a little turbulence and he didn't care for that either.  But once things smoothed out and we gave him his little laptop he was happy and then fell asleep.  Grandma picked us up from the airport and we ran around Spokane before heading to Grandma's house.  He didn't get much of a nap this day so when Aunt Colleen came by to see him she about put him to sleep holding him. 

On Thursday the 6th we headed to Wenatchee after breakfast to go see Aunt Sherri, Uncle Pete and Cousin Brandon.  We got to their house and Sherri was holding Ryan and she put him to sleep.  So we put him on the floor in the guest room so he could nap.  Mom, Dad & Grandma had a few errands to run so they did that and Sherri & Pete watched Ryan.  When we arrived back and hour or so later, Ryan was up.  He had only slept 20 minutes.  UGH!  We had lunch and then we decided to get in their pool.  This was Ryan's 2nd first of the trip.  He's been in his little pool but not this kind of pool.  Mom had bought him a floaty ring that she thought he might like so we were going to try that out.  Ryan got in the pool with Dad holding him and he wasn't too sure of it.  Then we put him in the floaty ring and once he realized he had the control and could do what he wanted he thought it was the best thing in the world.  He'd kick kick kick and get this look on his face that you knew he was concentrating.  It was so cute.  Then once he was a little more comfortable in the floaty he started splashing with his hands as well as kicking his legs.  It was so cute and so great to see.  He stayed in the pool for a long long time and when we finally made him get out, he just continued to stare at the pool.  After he was all dried off some of Sherri's co-workers came over to meet Ryan.  They have been following our journey from the beginning and have been very supportive - sending us e-mails and gifts.  He was kind of quiet and snuggly but we think they enjoyed him.  They brought him a gift - a book and a very soft stuffed animal.  After they left we had dinner.  Brandon came home from work about this time and sat on one side of Ryan.  Ryan immediately  took to Brandon - reaching out to him, cutting his eyes at him, playing with him - it was very cute.  Then we headed back to Coulee Dam.  Ryan did ok for most of the ride - sleeping part of it - until we were about 30 minutes out and then he started crying.  We stopped in Coulee City and Mom got in back with him but she couldn't settle him down.  He wanted to be held or wanted to be sleeping on his belly - not in a car seat.  He continued to cry until we came into Electric City, which is one of the little towns in the Coulee area and about 10 minutes from home.  As we came into town he finally fell back asleep.  Turd.  Got him home and he went fast to sleep.

Friday was a down day for us and luckily so.  He hadn't had good naps in days but this day he took a 3 hour nap.  We went out to Uncle Bob's for dinner that night and Ryan had a good time seeing everyone.

Saturday all Mom's siblings, nieces/nephews & their families came to Coulee.  We all went out to the lake.  More of Ryan's first's - going to the beach, swimming in the lake and boat ride.  The lake water was a bit colder than Aunt Sherri's pool so it startled Ryan at first but once he was in his floaty ring he was a happy boy.  After lunch Mom wanted to water ski so we thought we'd also take Ryan for his first boat ride in Uncle Bob's boat.  We were not sure how he'd do and luckily leaving the boat dock it is a no wake zone so we could go slow.  Once we were out of the no wake zone Uncle Bob sped up and Ryan did good.  Then Dad took off Ryan's hat to let the wind blow through his hair and it wound him up.  He started jumped and having a good time.  It was really cute.  Mom skied until Uncle Bob took her over some bumps and she crashed.  Then we took a boat ride up the lake to show Dad around since he has not been on the lake by boat.  Lake Roosevelt is a very long lake behind the Grand Coulee Dam that goes all the way to Canada.  After we got back to the beach some people went fishing and then we had cake and we opened Ryan's birthday gifts from Mom's family.  He got a lot of money that will pay for his ABM therapy, clothes and some toys.  About 7 p.m. we started loading up to head home.  Ryan easily went to sleep that evening.

Sunday the family was going out to Uncle Bob's for breakfast and then family photos.  While Mom was getting ready, Grandma was holding Ryan and rocking him in the rocking chair.  Mom thought it got rather quiet and went out to see that he was fast asleep at 8:20 a.m.  Mom grabbed him and he didn't stir so she put him on the couch and then we let him sleep until 9 a.m. when we woke him up.  He was not too happy about it.  We got out to Bob's and Ryan hung out on the couch with Brandon and some of his cousins.  We had breakfast and then everyone went outside for photos.  Uncle Larry took the photos.  It was quiet a process - the wind was blowing so we had to find the right spot and of course it was bright out so then we had people squinting.  In the end he got some good photos.  Unfortunately in the whole family photo Ryan decided he had had a enough.  In one of the photos he had the big pouty lip and the one you will see he is flat out unhappy.  After the photos we stayed for a bit but then decided to take Ryan back to Grandma's and see if we could get any type of nap.  Nope.  He had just had too much stimulation and needed a break and some quiet time.  Once Mom, Aunt Toni & Aunt Zana and crew came down to the house, we had Grandma rock Ryan and this time they both feel asleep.  And then some of the cousins decided to take a nap too so the living room was fully of people napping.  When Ryan woke up we said let's go back to the beach so we got ready and went back out.  It was a little warmer than Saturday but the water seemed colder so Mom took her time wading into the water with Ryan to get him used to it and then put him in the floaty.  He had a blast again and was in the water a long time.  Finally he had too much lake water and had an urpy so we got him out. 

Monday we ran up to an area behind the dam where there was a turbine for a generator that was on a big trailer.  We had ran into it on Saturday as it was turning into this location - it tied up traffic it was so big.  This day they were going to be taking the turbine off the trailer and placing it on a barge to send it up the lake to Canada to Revelstoke Dam.  They are putting in a 5th generator.  It was quite a site to see and you will see the pictures.  We watched for a while and then Mom needed to take Ryan home so Dad & Uncle Larry & Aunt Zana stayed.  Then they came back to the house and we got ready to leave for Spokane.  On our way out of town we stopped back by and saw they got the turbine on the barge - we missed the best part.  Darn!  Uncle Larry had gone back up so hopefully he got some good photos of it.  Apparently the turbine came out of Brazil, was shipped by boat up to Portland where it was put on a barge to Pasco where it was put on this trailer and drove up to Coulee.  The trailer had a truck on the front end and two on the back end and could only do 35 mph.  Wouldn't you hate to get stuck behind that?  They had done this about 2 years ago and said they are planning on doing this again in about 2 more years.  It was definitely a site Mom had never seen.

When we got to the airport we found out our flight was an hour late so we went to the restaurant for food.  By the time we got on our plane Ryan was tired and cranky and pretty much fussed the entire flight and we tried so hard to keep him quiet.  At one point he was playing ok and then slept.  We got home and K & Shirley were at our house with their grandson Brandon.  He has been following Ryan's story and was in town from Colorado and leaving the next day so we wanted to get him to meet Ryan.  Ryan was still tired but tried to wind up a little for Brandon but quickly ran out of gas.  Next time he's in town we'll have him over so he can play with Ryan when Ryan isn't so tired. 

We think Ryan was very happy to be home but it has taken a few days for him to get adjusted.  We told the care taker Tuesday to give Ryan a down day as we knew he was tired and he was - took a 3 hour nap that day.  It was nice giving him the down day because he had a really great workout with the physical therapist.  He was standing for her, sitting and she even got him in the crawling position without fussing and giving a little support on his shoulder but otherwise it was all Ryan.  It was so nice to see.  He did good at speech therapy this week and yesterday was our first feeding therapy since we moved it to Friday afternoons.  He did great for the first 30 minutes until the therapist tried to give Ryan a full puff.  He immediately started gagging and unfortunately threw up.  After that he was like 'I'm done.' 

Since we've found out Ryan really likes the water Mom has started working on doing something with this.  There is an aquatic OT program at the Elks and Mom has Ryan on the waiting list for that.  And we're looking into swimming lessons at the YMCA that is right across the street from where Dad works and not far from our house.  The Y has an adapted swim class for kids with special needs and Mom was talking to the aquatic director about it yesterday afternoon and she recommended we try the regular parent/child class and see how he does.  If we then think he needs the adapted class we can get him in that.  So Ryan will begin swimming classes on the 31st if everything goes as planned.   

Ryan is having ABM therapy this weekend and will probably get to see Grandma Pam & Grandpa Eric who he hasn't seen since his birthday.  Mom & Dad are trying to get their backyard project finished today and Mom is taking a cake decorating class and she has homework to get done so our weekend will be busy.

August 23, 2009 - Things have been pretty quiet for us so not much to write.  Last weekend Ryan had his ABM therapy and did really well.  The therapist was able to get him up on his hands and knees in the crawling position a few times.  She sees some nice progress in his spine.  We did 2 more sessions yesterday and he did really well.  We're scheduled again for the first weekend in October.  We finally made it to a baseball game last Wednesday.  It was the first one we've made all year - we usually go to a lot of them.  We got to see Larry & Judy, who we haven't seen since the NCAA tournament in March.  Ryan did really well but was so ready for bed when we got home.  Ryan got to see the grandparents these last two weekends and Mom & Dad finally got the backyard project done!  We took out a tree, put in a waterfall, extended our patio, re-curbed the flower bed along the back fence, and then added ground cover & rock where needed.  We hired out most of it but did the ground cover & rock ourselves.  Man we're happy it's done! 

This should be another quiet week.  We really like those...