Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A Boy and His Dog

I  love how much Noah and Paisley love each other. She is always SO excited when he gets home from school. She really misses him while he is away.

Cute story - The other night at bedtime, I called Paisley (she sleeps with Noah) to come to bed. She didn't come. I called her again and no Paisley. Noah whined and I suggested he try. He can not say Paisley but he will verbally try and call her. So he called for her and what do you know, she immediately comes running. I told him that it doesn't matter that he can't say her name the way others can, she knows when her boy is calling him. He was so proud. 

Linking to Special Exposure Wednesday at 5 Minutes for Special Needs
and Wordless Wednesday at 5 Minutes for Moms

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Freezer Paper Stenciling

Ever since I first read about freezer paper stenciling on various craft blogs, I've wanted to give it a try. It looks fun and there are so many things you can do with it. 

So I decided to buy some freezer paper and give it a try. Honestly, it's not really hard at all. I used my Silhouette to cut out the images I wanted to stencil (I've done all letters thus far) and then iron the freezer paper shiny side down to whatever you want to stencil on. It sticks well and then you are able to easily stencil just like you would with any other type of stencil. 

You can use fabric paint but since I have a lot of acrylic paint in various colors, I thought it would be more economical to just buy a textile medium that you mix with acrylic paint. As long as you use the medium, you should still be able to wash the shirt with no problems. The one thing I learned was to be careful how much medium you add to the paint. You don't want to add to much because that will make the paint to thin and will it bleed through the stencil, which I learned the hard way, as that happened the first time I gave this a try. Also, use tweezers for the tiny, little bitty pieces that go inside the middle of some of the letters like "a" and "O." 

My second effort was this bag. 

Not too shabby. The tree is cut from fabric using the Silhouette and ironed on. 

My third and fourth efforts were these two shirts for a friend who is having a 2nd baby girl next month. 

Love them. I see much more freezer paper stenciling in my future. The bloggers were right - it's addictive! 

Looking for info on freezer paper stenciling? Check out this video tutorial at I am Momma Hear me Roar and this post at Less Cake More Frosting or this guest tutorial at Fave Crafts.

Linking up to the link parties listed in my sidebar
Serenity Now Crafty Cutter Party

Monday, March 28, 2011

A Few More CP Facts

This will be the last of the "Cerebral Palsy Awareness Posts" for March. I found some interesting statistics I thought I'd share. And since you are here reading my blog and I'm doing this because of my Noah, I wrote about Noah after the statistics if they were at all relevant to him. 
  • There are more boys born with Cerebral Palsy (CP) than girls (for every 100 girls there are 135 boys).
  • About one-half of children with CP are born prematurely. (Noah was a preemie.)
  • More than one-half of children with CP have hemiplegia (one side of the body is paralyzed, as typically seen in adult stroke).
  • One in nine people with CP have features of autism. (Noah has borderline autism.)
  • One in four people with CP have epileptic seizures. (Noah has epilepsy too.)
  • Six out of 10 people with CP have normal or superior intelligence. 
  • One in three children with CP cannot walk. (Noah doesn't walk much. He has walked in the past some with maximum assistance in a walker but it's very difficult and tiring for him.)
  • One in four children with CP cannot feed or dress themselves. (Noah can not dress himself but he can feed himself table foods like chicken nuggets or crackers but needs help with things that require a spoon like pudding.) 

And even though March is over, I'll continue to share relevant information regarding Cerebral Palsy as I come across it because I feel educating others is a positive step in the right direction of my son and others like him being fully accepted by society. 

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Quote of the Week: Go with All your Heart

"Wherever you go, go with all your heart."
- Confucius 

Friday, March 25, 2011

Miracle League Spring Season

The Spring Season of Miracle League baseball started last night. In case you are a new reader (and I know we have several) let me explain what Miracle League baseball is. It is baseball for children with special needs and they play on a special field that wheelchairs and walkers can easily maneuver on. Every child had an able bodied "buddy" to help him play and it's purely for fun. There are no strikes, no outs, no losers - only winners! 

I grew up playing softball off and on over the years and my brother was always playing baseball and quite good at it and I just enjoy baseball games and always dreamed of my children playing baseball. Then there was a period of time I thought that dream might never come to fruition since Noah could not walk. And then, Miracle League baseball came to our area and now my heart soars every single time I watch Noah (and all the adorable kiddos) excitedly play. 

As I mentioned, every Miracle League player has an able bodied buddy helping them out. Most of the time they are youth groups from churches or a local high school baseball or softball team volunteering to be buddies. But, Noah has a special buddy; his Grandadddy! He just plays and behaves better when Granddaddy is his buddy. And I think Granddad probably enjoys it as much as Noah does! 

Noah has been counting down the days until the first game of the season. He was SO excited. In fact, you can watch this short little video to see his excitement! He did great playing and was thoroughly enjoyed so now I'll bombard you with pictures because I just got SO many good ones I can't narrow it down too much! 

In the dug out waiting on their turn to bat - is that look 
he is shooting me not priceless! 
On deck waiting on their turn to bat

Getting ready to bat
(They always step up to the plate. My Dad then takes the bat and knocks the dirt off Noah's "cleats" and then they take a practice swing.)

Look at that grin on his face!

And their off! 

This is my favorite from last night! 
Just look at that SMILE! If that doesn't scream happiness then I don't know what does!

On second base

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Drink Mix Packet Holder Thingie-ma-Jig

Have you ever seen water bottles (at a shower, wedding, or another type of event) that have a holder (usually handmade) containing a Crystal Light drink mix packet? (I have no idea if that's the right name for them but I'm referring to the little mixes that you add into an individual size bottle of water that flavors the water.) 

They can be created in colors to match the event and look like this....

After seeing them, I've always wanted to create one for different events but honestly they look incredibly time consuming if you are making a bunch for an event. Well, I got to thinking the other day, I bet I could use my Silhouette to create one of those a heck of a lot easier and faster.

So I grabbed a bottle of water, a individual sized Crystal Light drink mix pouch, a ruler, and some cardstock and sat down at the computer. I started measuring and creating in the Silhouette software. I cut it out, measured, adjusted, cut again, adjusted some more, and cut again. When I was all done embellishing, it ended up looking like this......

It's a bit different than the original holders that I saw (as pictured above) because it is all on one piece of cardstock instead of multiple pieces. But since I even created the scored fold lines, all you have to do is fold it, then just use a bit of the adhesive of your choice (I used a glue stick) to secure the sides down, add some embellishments to the front if desired, add your mix in pouch, and hang it on the bottle of water. I used paper that was patterned on both sides but I think it'd be cute on solid colored cardstock as well.

How cute would this one be with some Easter treats?

Extreme close up

And here's some I created to match a Breakfast at Tiffany's themed event I did....

(And yes, if you have a Silhouette and want the cut file to create one of these, I'm willing to share, just shoot me an email or leave a comment with your email.)

Linking up to the parties listed in my sidebar 
Visit Serenity Now Crafty Cutter Party

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Spikey Hair Noah

Noah got his hair cut last weekend and when the lady was done cutting his hair, she put gel in it and made it spikey. I thought it was adorable so I of course I had to give it a try. So cute!

For more Wordless Wednesday check out 5 Minutes for Moms and Special Exposure Wednesday at 5 Minutes for Special Needs 

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Walking with Noah

In my last post, I mentioned that I have been taking walks for exercise. I have been doing this in the late afternoons/early evenings so I can take Noah with me. I get extra exercise when I'm pushing the wheelchair up and down hills (because he is HEAVY!) and Noah loves it so that makes it a win win situation. 

Not very far from our house is a baseball field where one of the local high school teams practices and has games. It's close enough for us to walk but far enough for it to be worth the walk exercise wise so Noah and I have been walking to the field. He is in love with all things baseball at the moment (and starts the spring season of Miracle League Thursday!) so we have been walking to the field every afternoon/early evening and watching the team practice and play. There is one little area where he can see pretty good and is flat so I push him to that little area and let him watch. 

It's been good and fun for both of us! 

(Pictures taken by J when we went on a family walk on a nearby walking path when he was off work)

Monday, March 21, 2011

Update on Healthy Eating Goal

Back in January I shared with you some personal goals for 2011. My biggest goal for the year was to start living a healthier lifestyle by eating better and exercising. Although I don't really consider this a "diet" I knew that loosing weight would be a part of this goal. 

Thus far, I feel like I am doing really well with this goal! I have changed a lot of what we are eating by buying healthier and low fat foods. I've been counting calories (using Spark People to do this), trying new recipes, taking walks (with Noah!), and doing some exercise videos. (Love the Dance the Inches Off series - it doesn't even really feel like exercising!)

My friend, Monika, and I have become accountability partners and that has been SO helpful. It really helps to have someone who is supportive and trying to make many of the same lifestyle changes as you are. So, thanks Monika! 

Thus far, I've lost 22 pounds! I will admit there are weeks where it has been frustrating only losing a pound or two but I keep reminding myself that these are positive lifestyle changes I'm making and that loosing small amounts of weight over a long period of time is better than quickly loosing a lot of weight as they say it's easier to keep it off when you lose it slowly.  

I still have a ways to go before I hit my goal weight but I'm excited at the changes I'm seeing so far. I feel better, have more energy, and ultimately I think that combined makes me a happier, healthier person which in turn makes me a better wife, Mom, friend, etc. 

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Quote of the Week: Danced in the Rain

"Anyone who says sunshine brings
happiness has never 
danced in the rain." 
- Roger Miller

Friday, March 18, 2011

Friday Favorites: The One that Starts Something New

Every other Friday (or perhaps every Friday, it just depends on how busy my life is!) I am going to link to some blog posts that I thoroughly enjoyed. No doubt there will be some craft posts highlighted as those are my favorite, easy reading type of blogs but there will also be some special needs related posts and adoption related posts as I come across really great ones. So people are always asking me what blogs I read and through Friday Favorites, you’ll get to a sampling of some of what is in my Google Reader.  

Since I just decided to do this, this week’s list will be on the short side. 


This would be too cute in my owlie themed bathroom!

Special Needs
How Do You do It?
Love this post by Heather at 5 Minutes for Special Needs about that infamous “I don’t know how you do it” statement. I know people don’t mean it badly and if you  have said it or thought it before please know I’m not picking on you but there are moments in which life is so rough and someone says that and I just want to say “Really? Really?!?” The truth of the matter is there are days I don’t know how I do it either. Oh wait, I do it because I was made for this! 

This is from one of my new favorite recipe blogs. As you may remember from my 2011 goals I am trying to  live a healthier lifestyle which includes loosing some weight and eating better. I found this blog shortly after setting those goals and have tried many recipes from it. I love a good cheesecake and this one looks delicious even though it’s on the lighter side. I’ll definitely be trying it next time we have company over. 

My fave memory of this week: Noah's spikey hair fresh after a new haircut

My fave picture I took this week: The St Patty's Day pic posted earlier in the week

My fave post I wrote this week: What Do you Call Someone with a Disability?

Most popular post this week: What Do You call Someone with a Disability?

That's it for this week! 

Thursday, March 17, 2011

St. Patty's Day

Happy St Patrick's Day! 

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Cooking Nuggets

Noah cooked his own dinner (with help) for the first time the other night. He made himself popcorn chicken in the microwave. He was so proud of himself. 

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

What Do You Call Someone with a Disability?

As the mother of a child with a disability, I notice when people stare at my son, Noah. I notice the whispers. I've heard children call him names. It breaks my heart. Sometimes I think they act out of ignorance. They just don't know what is wrong with him. They don't know how to interact with him. They don't know what you call someone with a disability. I've heard him called retarded, deaf, dumb, stupid - just to name a few!

In the past, people with disabilities were not seen as having much to contribute to society and were often times institutionalized. Welcome to the year 2011! Now, the disabled live and work amongst us. There are 49 million people living in the US who have some form of a disability. (That's 1 out of 5, folks!) So obviously the stereotypes are myths, because these people do have a future and they do have feelings!

They are not retarded, dumb, cripple, mute, or defective. They are people just like you and me. They are just different!

So, you ask what do you call an individual with a disability?? You call them women, men, boys, girls, students, your teacher, doctor, neighbor, friend, athletes, brunettes, blondes,church members, leaders, your Mom or Dad, your sister or brother, or and any other word you would call any other person.

I call him Noah.

(Note: I actually wrote this years ago but thought I'd share it in honor of CP Awareness Month.)

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Quote of the Week: Time Changes Things

"They says that time changes 
things but you actually have 
to change them yourself." 
~ Andy Warhol

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Time for Change

Not only is it time to change the clocks, it's time for me to change the salt and pepper shakers that have the privilege of sitting in the napkin holder on our kitchen table. 

Goodbye Mr.and Mrs. Snowy......

And helloooo Mr. and Mrs. Cottontail! 

Friday, March 11, 2011

Spring Wreath

So, last week I was browsing through some of the blogs I read in Google reader and someone linked to this adorable St. Patty's Day Wreath. I don't decorate for St. Patty's day but I just loved the combo of the lucky bunting along with the rosettes. I hadn't decided on a direction for my Spring wreath at that point and that St. Patty's Day wreath gave me just the inspiration I needed.

That's one thing I LOVE about blog land, you can be inspired by something and then end up with something that's totally different and represents your style. 

So to create my Spring wreath, you're going to need:
A styrofoam wreath form (got mine at the Dollar Tree)
Scrap fabric in assorted spring colors
Ribbon (I used two different kinds - a thick satin ribbon for wrapping the wreath form and then a thin white ribbon for the bunting)
Iron on fabric interfacing (I used heat and bond)
Straight Pins 

1. Cover your wreath form in white (or a color of your choice) ribbon. Put a dab of glue on the back of the wreath when you start and then just keep wrapping and wrapping and wrapping the ribbon all the way around the wreath until it's covered. Set it aside for now.

2. Now, make your rosettes. There's a bunch of rosette tutorials out there but this one is my favorite. (You use pipe cleaners when creating the rosettes and I like the stability the pipe cleaner gives to it.) Glue your rosettes where you'd like them to go on your wreath using hot glue. (If you wanted to make this an interchangeable wreath, which I'm going to do at some point so I don't have 100 different wreaths for every season, you could just use velcro on the back of the rosettes and the wreath like this blogger did.)

3. Now to create the Spring bunting, I used a triangle shape that was in my Silhouette library and cut them all out of white fabric with my Silhouette machine but you could just free hand the triangles if you don't have a Silhouette or similar cutting machine. Iron on the fabric interfacing to the back of your different scrap fabrics that you will use for your letters. Cut the letters out of the fabric. I used my Silhouette for this too. Then just iron your letters on to your triangles and glue the triangles on to a piece of ribbon. To attach it to the wreath, I was initially going to hot glue it but was having trouble trying to get it all lined up so I decided I would pin it with straight pins and then glue it. My pins have little yellow ends and once I put them in the wreath to hold the bunting, I decided it looked cute just like that so I left the pins in. 

4. Tie on some ribbon (I actually used a long strip of fabric from one of the fabrics used to create the wreath), hang your wreath, and admire it's cuteness! 

I love it. That little spring bunting makes me smile every time I see it. 

I went ahead and hung it in hopes that hanging my spring wreath will make the spring weather come. I'm tired of the wind and rain we've had all week! 

Linking up to the link parties listed in my side bar


Thursday, March 10, 2011

Carefree and Smiley

It's been a rough couple of weeks for Noah with the flu, a stomach bug, and his little accident with the sidewalk. He's been super moody, but today was a good day!

Each year the middle school classes at Noah's school make and sell doggie treats before Christmas. Then they use their earnings to take their parents out to eat at a local restaurant for a "parent appreciation lunch." That was today and Noah was so excited about it - so excited that he woke up at 5:30 this morning. (I was not excited about that!) Lunch was nice and Noah was beaming with pride when his teacher reminded them that their hard work was the reason we were having a nice lunch. 

He was in a great and giggly mood after he woke up from his nap (when this picture was taken) and all evening. It's nice to see him smiling, happy, carefree, and feeling more like himself again!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Wooden Purses

I've been working on some of these little wooden purses.....

I bought them plain at Michael's and have enjoyed painting and embellishing them. I've used paint, scrapbook paper, ribbon, and vinyl to embellish them and lined the insides with felt. 

I think they would be perfect for carrying jewelry when you travel or to set on a night stand with your jewelry in it while you sleep. They'd even be cute packaging for a gift card. 

I've put a couple of them in my Etsy store.  

Monday, March 7, 2011

Cerebral Palsy Awareness Month

Did you that March is Cerebral Palsy Awareness Month? In honor of this, I'll be doing a couple of posts this month focusing on Cerebral Palsy. People tell me all the time that they don't know very much about it so here is your chance to learn a little bit about it! 

First up, let’s define Cerebral Palsy.

To be very brief and sum it up in one sentence; Cerebral Palsy (which I am going to refer to as CP) is a condition caused by injury to the brain resulting in loss of oxygen right before, during, or after birth. There are varying degrees of CP from mild to moderate to severe. 

Now some facts about CP......

  • Approximately 765,000 children and adults in the US manifest one or more of the signs of CP. 
  • 8,000 – 10,000 children are diagnosed with CP each year. 
  • CP is the second most common neurological impairment in childhood.
  • Currently, there is no cure for CP but treatments and therapies (such as physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, communication devices, medications, braces, etc.) can be used to manage CP and help a child reach his/her full potential. 
  • A number of other medical conditions are associated with CP such as mental impairment, seizures or epilepsy, and impaired vision or hearing. 
  • 45 % of all children with CP develop epilepsy. (Noah has epilepsy too.)
  • The average lifetime cost for a person with cerebral palsy totals nearly $1 million over and above the costs experienced by a person without the disability.
  • 20% of children diagnosed with congenital cerebral palsy developed CP due to a brain injury during the birthing process.

Do you have a question about CP? Now's your chance to ask! Simply leave it in a comment or email it to me at coleyscorner(at)gmail(dot)com and I'll do my best to answer it or find the answer in a later post.

Cerebral Palsy Source 
United Cerebral Palsy Organization