Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Feeling down?

Check out this video. Sorry it is not of the boys but, I guarantee it will leave a smile on your face.
The Laughing Quads

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

One more pic....

This was the funniest thing. We had just watched the fireworks at Magic Kingdom and decided it was time to call it a day. It was very crowded at this point, so we decided to load Ethan in the stroller as well. He was out within 5 minutes. Ryan realized he was asleep and decided it would be a good idea to try and wake him up and hit him with his binkie, repeatedly. Poor Ethan had no idea what was going on and never woke up.

I miss Disney...

Actually, I think I just miss my kids. Since I came down with the shingles, my parents offered to keep the kids for a few days so that Greg could still go to work and I could rest and recover. They have only been gone 24 hours and I have to admit, the quiet has been so nice, but I do miss them. I finally uploaded the pictures from Disney World from my camera so I thought I would share a few.



Aunt Amity, Goofy & Ethan

Ethan & Xanis (Aunt Leigh & Uncle Justin's nephew)

OutRun Autism 2007

My friend, Gini and I, along with our kids, decided to do the OutRun Autism fundraiser this year. And no, we didn't run. They had a 5k race and a one mile fun walk. The kids got about half way through and decided they would much rather play on the playground with Gini's husband then to continue the long and treacherous walk with us. I have to admit that it was nice to go for a walk and have an adult conversation! Here are some pics from the walk. This was their biggest turnout yet!

Friday, April 25, 2008


I have shingles. This is so not something I thought I would experiencing at age 31. I thought only old(er) people got this.

I noticed, what appeared to be a bug bite, on my left breast on Monday. As the week went on, the redness around it, kept getting worse. I also started having some pain in my breast and it radiated through to my shoulder and today it decided to go down my arm as well. I went to the doctor today and he mentioned shingles right off the bat and once I mentioned the pain in my breast, shoulder & arm, he knew that is what it is. The good news is that we caught it early. He said if I had gone in a day or two earlier, it probably wouldn't have been able to diagnose it. The bad news is that I am very contagious and the pain will get worse and the bumps will most likely scar. He game me a medicine to try and help it from getting worse, along with a steroid. If I am in pain next week, I need to go back to try and manage that.

So stay far, far away from the Syferd house this week. I hear I am in for a long haul. Good thing we didn't have any big plans this weekend!

Update: So I am contagious but I can't give shingles to someone else. I can only spread it to those that have not had the chicken pox yet. So if you have had the chicken pox, come on over and party. Ok, not really. I am in bed, in my pajamas and I just took some meds. The pain is getting worse and I just have this feeling I will be calling the doctor later for something stronger.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

I really hope I never have to call 911 again.

We went down to the park after lunch and there was another woman there with about six kids. We got to chit chatting and she said she babysat also and that this was her first day with 2 of the kids. A little while later, I hear her yelling and I thought she was yelling for some kids in the field. Then she yells, do any of you know anything about seizures. I run over and there is this little 3 year old boy, seizing. I called 911 (thank God, i remembered my phone today) and they told us to keep him comfortable but not to prevent him from shaking at all. His seizure went on for at least 3 minutes. A long time for such a little guy. The fire truck and ambulance got there and they did take him. He did have a fever but only 101 and this was his first time having a seizure.

As all of this was going on, I look up and this other little boy was backed into the corner, just bawling. It turns out that Mason is his little brother. So I picked him up and carried him over to the bench and sat with him. He just kept asking me when his brother would come back. I think he was afraid that his brother would go to the hospital and not come back.

I can't get this whole scene out of my head. That poor little boy laying there without any control over his body and his big brother watching everything. I am really hoping we see them again so that I know that little Mason is ok.

So please, say a prayer for Mason, Hayden and their parents. I can't even imagine getting a phone call like that and hope I never do.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Ryan's words

When I was putting together Ryan's food list, I thought it would be fun to do a word list. He is talking so much now that I want to start keeping a list of his progress.

Mommy, Daddy, Ethie (Ethan), hug, car, truck, bus, jump, baby, eat, drink, cereal, chip, book, play, please, baba (binkie), NO, shoshoes (shoes), bowl, swing, slide, Santa, color, light, tall, bubbles, up, down, open, covers, Grandma, Grandpa, water, bath

animals & their sounds--cat, goose, duck, horse, cow, pig, fish, penguin, tiger, bear, monkey, dog, bird

He knows all of the Little Einsteins, Backyardigans, Dora & Diego characters. Not sure if that is a good thing though! He knows Mickey & Snoopy too. :)

Seeing this list, makes me so proud for all of the hard work Ryan has done and so thankful for early intervention. At his two year appointment in January, he said maybe 5 words and signed another 5. Now we are well over 50 and counting. I am just so proud of both of my boys. Ethan loves to teach Ryan new words and, when Ryan tries to say it, Ethan always says "Good job, buddy!". They really can be sweet....sometimes. :)

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Ry's Foods

In order to start this new feeding program with Ryan, I had to put a list of his preferred foods. I thought some of you might find it interesting to see what he actually will eat.

Crackers--goldfish (pizza & pretzel flavors only ), wheat thins-any flavor; won't touch a plain Club or Ritz cracker
Sun Chips--any flavor
dried fruit made by Gerber toddler
pretzel sticks--must be sticks or the little ones in the chex mix bags
cereal--Cheerios--any flavor, especially fruity cheerios, mini wheats (sometimes)
juice boxes at room temperature
milk, must be warmed
Little Debbie nutty bars--peanut butter bar covered in chocolate
Teddy Grahams--any flavor, especially chocolate
Gerber Puffs--any flavor
French fries
Veggie flavored chips
Veggie straws
red licorice
fruit snacks--gummies

Yes, that is it. No meats, no cheese, no protein other then milk. It really is amazing that he weighs almost as much as his big brother. We have been trying to limit his milk intake and offering more juice or water but it is hard some days because I know he depends on it sometimes.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

A new philosophy....

So Ryan had a great session today at Occupational therapy. His therapist introduced a new swing that Ryan (and Ethan too) absolutely loved. She attaches the platform to the rope on the ceiling and puts a huge inflatable tire on the platform. The best thing about this new swing is that it also bounced, similar to a bungee apparatus. Ryan LOVED it and this was the longest he has ever been on a swing, other then at the playground. He loved the swinging, loved the bouncing and loved sharing it with his big brother.
We moved into the food room and Ryan has not been making much progress as far as food goes. That is the one thing I really feel like we have not gone anywhere with. He still has problems even looking at new foods, let alone eating them. The last few sessions (and therapy times at home) he screams and cries until we take it away or he throws it. I mentioned another approach that I had learned about at the Columbus Speech & Hearing Center and lo and behold, Kathleen, our beloved therapist, is also trained it this philosophy and is willing to work one on one with Ryan. It is called SOS, Sequential Oral Sensory, developed by a psychologist named Kay Toomey. You can read more about it here. So I really feel like we need a change as Ryan has been doing the same food therapy since October and we have made very little progress. We will be trying this new method and then possibly doing it with a group using peer models.
And unfortunately, we have to start cutting back on how often we go to OT. We will now go twice a month instead of 3 times. Our insurance only covers 20 visits and that is quickly approaching and unless someone is willing to give me an extra $600 a month, we just can't swing paying for it out of pocket. We have had great progress as far as sensory integration that I am really ok with it and know that Ryan will be getting OT when he starts at his school in the fall.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

The results are in...

Greg and I met with Ryan's psycholgist today to go over the results from the testing they did. Overall, Ryan scored borderline below average on most everything developmentally. This was no surprise to us. Right now, he does not see him on the spectrum. That is good news but deep down I am not sure I totally agree with it. After I voiced my concerns about Ry possibly being on the spectrum or possibly found to be at a later time, he agreed to see us in June, just before Ryan starts school. Then we will meet again after Ryan has been in school for a month or so to see how he is doing and to make sure we are moving in the right direction. My biggest concern right now is his lack in creating social bonds with his peers. Even with Ethan and the kids I watch, there is no reciprical play and most of the time he goes off and does his own thing. We are hoping that by exposing him to other kids, he will learn to cope and learn how to play as a typical two year old. He is fine with most adults so I am hoping he can start a bond with his teachers pretty quickly.

Right now we are just going to keep doing with what we have been doing for the last 8 months. Occupational therapy 3 times a month and speech weekly.

All in all, we are ok with all of this. Diagnosis or not, it doesn't change any of the therapies that Ryan is already receiving.

Thank you to everyone for all of your support throughout this whole process!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

We are back!

Although it would have been nice to come home to some SPRING weather. We left Florida and it was 75 degrees, sunny and absolutely perfect. I was ready to jump out of the plane with the pilot came on and said it was only 35 in Columbus.

I promise to write a huge post about our trip. All in all, we had a wonderful vacation. The boys were great, well for the most part, and Ryan exceeded our expectations. He did wonderfully the whole time and only one major meltdown.

In the meantime, here are a small handful of the 2000 (yes you read that right) pictures that Greg took during our trip.

Greg's pics