Friday, January 27, 2006

Emma Sage is in Love....

Originally uploaded by annikaleigh.
She is in Love with the Movie Nanny McPhee......I've never seen her so excited about a movie before!

Nanny McPhee.....

Today was truly a magical day and the ending was one of pure delight!

Emma Sage has been to a few movies, and will sit and watch patiently......laughing at times and interested....but NEVER, EVER like she was tonight.

The movie Nanny McPhee grabbed on to my little girl and took her for a Magical ride. I have never seen Emma Sage so intent on any movie before.....she was just drawn to the big screen and you could see her eyes dancing with delight at this incredible movie.

At the end, she was grinning from ear-to-ear and clapped so joyfully. She told us that she 'Loved Nanny McPhee" and wanted to watch it again!

I highly recommend this movie and I am planning on taking my little girl one more time in the theatre because I would love to relive the Magic all over again with my little girl! [and Otto and Greta!]

Nanny McPhee

Originally uploaded by annikaleigh.
and after a delicious dinner we went to the movies to see a Most Magical Movie called 'Nanny McPhee'!!!

.........and then, like Magic,,,,,the paints washed away in the tub! But that was not the end of our Magical Day,,,,,,, Posted by Picasa

"There is no surprise more magical than the surprise of being loved. It is the finger of God on a man's shoulder."~Margaret Kennedy

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"The real world was just too real, and we didn't want to be a part of normal life. We wanted to create a magical world for the three of us." ~Robin Gibb

After the children created this banner we cut it up and made collages of their creations, making more Magic out of Magic. Posted by Picasa

"Second, there are so many magical places in books that you can't go to, like Hogwarts and Middle Earth, so I wanted to set a story in a place where children can actually go." ~Cornelia Funke

At our home.......I want the children to feel Magic throughout the day......during play, through creating,,,,through music and dance.....during story times,,,,,,the Magic of Childhood. Posted by Picasa

"It's not sometimes realistic to think that something magical can happen, but I think I look for the magic." ~Sherilyn Fenn

And orange and blue hands are indeed Magical!!!! and painting with your hands is a Magical experience Posted by Picasa

"Painting is the most magical of mediums. The transcendence is truly amazing to me every time I go to a museum and I see how somebody figured another way to rub colored dirt on a flat surface and make space where there is no space or make you think of a life experience."~Chuck Close

and then we moved from brush and palate, to fingers and paperplates! How Devine!!!! What Fun!!!! Posted by Picasa

"The world that she lives in is just magical, one of the most beautiful places I've ever seen." ~Camilla Belle

and today watching the children paint made me realize the pure magic of childhood......what a delightful place to be. Posted by Picasa

"Patience and perseverance have a magical affect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish." ~John Quincy Adams

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Today was truly a magical day.....from beginning to end,,,,there was a static in the air,,,,the children where delightful and giddy and we just had so much fun! Here is little Miss finding the Magic of a paint brush and lots of beautiful hues to change a plain white paper into a kalidascope...... Posted by Picasa

Thursday, January 26, 2006

"An angel, robed in spotless white,
Bent down and kissed the sleeping Night.
Night woke to blush; the sprite was gone.
Men saw the blush and called it Dawn."
(Paul Laurence Dunbar (1872-1906)

I was spoiled the link to see how.

The Weaver

The Weaver
My life is but a weaving Between my Lord and me;
I cannot choose the colours, He worketh steadily.
Oft-times He weaveth sorrow,
And I, in foolish pride
forget He sees the upper,
And I the under side.
Not till the loom is silent
And the shuttles cease to fly,
Shall God unroll the canvas
And explain the reason why.
The dark threads are as needful,
In the Weaver's skillful hand,
As the threads of gold and silver
In the pattern he has planned.
He knows, He loves, He cares
-Nothing this truth can dim;
He gives the very best to those
Who leave the choice with Him.

A friend is facing some testing tomorrow and she has been in my thoughts and prayers.
My hopes are that these tests are just the threads that binds her family closer, her friends nearer and her faith will grow and sustain her during this time of uncertainty.



That is the most perfect word I could use to describe how I am feeling right now. Full of Joy!

Our IEP meeting was not a meeting of dread, but was actually very refreshing, stimulating and I walked away with a heart that was so full of Joy.

Joy for my daughter and the gifts she is being given by teachers and professionals who understand and get it!

Joy for our community, to know that all of our children are held with the ideal of being unique and possessing their own strengths and gifts, and taught, supported and nurtured to develop to their fullest potential.

Joy, a heart full of Joy,,,,that is how I feel right now.

and I give thanks for this feeling.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006



Tomorrow is Emma Sage's IEP and annual conference [this will be the first time since the beginning of school that I will have a conversation with Emma Sage's teacher or case manager]..............same as my older children, we get one conference a year, but for some strange reason, it feels very strange to me...........

So tomorrow is the day I dread. I truly dislike this aspect of having a child with a disability...........the whole IEP and evaluations process is just something I dislike. I look at my daughter [the same as I do for her older siblings] and see a child who is unique and the possibilities are endless....................I see a child who needs to be taught and supported and encouraged [not something to classify, segregate or pick-apart because she is not 'typical'.]

We have a good school district, don't get me wrong.............over the last few years the movement for inclusion has been front and center.

So I was reading and found a wonderful quote that I will latch on to tonight and carry with me tomorrow.

"Compromise, if not the spice of life, is its solidity." ~Phyllis McGinely

The bottom line is.............

I will be affable. I will try to see the other person [the special ed team's] point of view. I will be flexible but trust my instincts. I will pay attention to every single detail and I will not let my 'weepy, cry at the drop of a hat' get in the way of seeing these details.

As Janis Joplin once said: "Don't compromise yourself, You are all you've got"................and I transfer that over to my precious Emma Sage..................I will never compromise her,,,,,and her right to be educated in the least restrictive environment and given every tool and support for her to succeed!

and I go into this meeting with the response from my advocate that is coming with me......"Great Goals For Next Year, I'll see you at noon!" you think I will sleep well tonight?!?

Emmis Sauna Master 2

Found this beautiful picture of and had to place in on my blog as I marked it as a favorite photograph. If you have not ventured to, you must [if you love imagages and photography, that is...]

"Far away, There in the Sunshine are my Highest Aspirations. I may not reach them, But I can Look Up and see their Beauty, Believe in Them, and try to Follow Where they Lead." ~Louisa May Alcott
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"Where there is great love there are always miracles." ~Willa Cather Posted by Picasa

If you notice in these two pictures, Emma Sage is so congested and can only breath from her mouth and her eyes look weepy. Good news is that she is responding quickly today and is almost back to a nose breather!

After our outing with the ducks we had a fun, yummy lunch and then Emma Sage headed up the Lane with her sisters Greta and Katrina to her friend John's 5th Birthday party....what fun was had......then after dinner we headed out to the doctors because Emma Sage has not been feeling so well....she had a sinus infection [clear, beautiful ears....can you believe she is 4 1/2 and not ONE ear infection, although I read all the time that a child with T21 will 'suffer' from ear infections].....because she has a had time shaking these types of infections she is on an anti-biotic. This is her first visit to the doctors since her 4 year old well-baby-check-up. [[giving thanks]] and besides this sinus bug, she is healthy as can be. We got home, took a nice warm bubble bath, read stories, took our medicine and then off to la-la land. Posted by Picasa

This is why I can't use 'old/stale' bread because not only do the ducks and geese get to eat,,,but the children always seem to 'nibble, nibble, nibble'....LOL!!! Posted by Picasa

The view down stream from the bridge and a view of our 'lunch guests'.....this is the little Hamlet we live in Posted by Picasa

"Uncle Louie".......or so the children call the white duck/goose amongst the crowd. When Katrina was a little girl she named a white snow goose that would tag along the geese in our pond "Uncle Louie" as it seemed like he was the 'Uncle' to the Canadian Geese and their offspring.....hence, every white duck/goose we see is "Uncle Louie". Posted by Picasa

Being a child is so much fun!!!!  Posted by Picasa

But those tears dried quickly and we went to feed the ducks and geese from the Bridge today..... Posted by Picasa

Then we fell down the step carrying the present [and dropped it] so the tears came a flowing [also Emma Sage has been sick....and we actually headed to the doctors last night].....I know, bad Mommy taking a picture of my sad little girl....but I thought she was too precious with her tears and I want to show what our day's are really like....and sometimes we cry. Posted by Picasa

Our day.....first we went to the Book Shoppe to buy a present for our friend John's Birthday is Miss Emma Sage checking out the selection. Posted by Picasa

Monday, January 23, 2006

"Far away, There in the Sunshine are my Highest Aspirations. I may not reach them, But I can Look Up and see their Beauty, Believe in Them, and try to Follow Where they Lead." ~Louisa May Alcott Posted by Picasa

Saturday, January 21, 2006

"Kindness in words creates confidence.
Kindness in thinking creates profoundness,
Kindness in giving creates love."


I know this picture is haunting, but Emma Sage asks all the time to go to the graveyard [she calls it Heaven] to visit baby Griffin......and to see GOD. So we go when ever we can, and I took this picture and was amazed at the beam of sunlight shinning down on her, and this picture makes me think of the piece I just posted below about Emma Sage's truly is palpable and quite amazing.
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What is it about this child?......

What is it about this child that makes people draw near to her? Emma Sage has a spirit that is so palpable [I wish I could bottle it up] this amazing aura that just draws people in and touches them deeply within a matter of seconds.

My day starts out with a smile and a kiss from my little girl [what better way than to start your day like that?]

We headed out to Otto's basketball game and Little Miss walks into the gym and everyone greets her, children run up to her to say 'Hello Emma Sage' and as soon as half-time rolls around, there is Little Miss on the bench with the team because they wanted their mascot! Too cute!!

Then at the coffee shop she was the little hostess.....greeting everyone who walked in and bringing smiles to their faces. "Hello.....What is your name?" [their response and asking her her name]..."I'm Emma Sage XXXX" she replies. "You getting a coffee?".......and then the conversation just grows. Lots of high fives and good-byes and my little Miss is off to her next adventure. We love this coffee shop because 'Aunt Dawny' works there and Emma Sage is royalty in her eyes. She gets to go behind the counter and ring up the customers, takes the money and give back change and a delightful send off "Bye-come again!" or if she really likes you she will 'blow you kisses'.

We then headed out with our coffee and goodies for the car ride to IKEA, at Port Elizabeth. If you have never been to IKEA you really should make the journey. Now, being Swedish by heritage does not make me bias to this place, it is the fun, practical ways to find storage solutions and wonderful gadgets for the home that have me hooked. We were able to pick up more rolled paper for my little Artist and her easel and we got a new storage unit for our felt boards, puzzles and Leap-pad, etc. items we got for Christmas.

This IKEA is truly a marvalous place because of its proxmity to New York City, New Jersey and the Outter is like being in the United Nations......which was right up Emma Sage's you guess it,,,,,her AURA was beaming and so was her sweet little smile and she made friends with every person she passed. It is just like people are drawn to her....this place is so busy on a weekend and very crowded, and still people paused and responded to her 'greetings'......It is like this kid is a Good Will Ambassador and people just realize it and are happy to take a moment to extend fellowship to another human being, amoungst the crowds, chaos and closest units!

We ate Swedish Meatballs and watched the big planes taking off from Newark Airport.....each one that went by, Emma Sage would wave and say "My Daddy on that plane?". [This is such a fun adventure in-of-itself, dinning along side the runway and the turnpike!........watching cars and planes go by,,,,what could be better than that for a four year old, not to mention her 9 year old brother!]

After our check-out, the bigger three wanted to stop in the Swedish Food Mart and get a few treats, so Emma Sage and I sat in the busy exit area waiting....and sure enough, people we had met on the showroom floors earlier were passing by saying "Bye Emma Sage"........and of coarse this Momma had a big smile on her face [cause I know the secret my little girl posses of making anothers soul light-up and joyful feeling of just by being in her presence].

and now, we are busy putting together our Trofast storage unit.

Friday, January 20, 2006

Where has the last seven days gone?......

It can't be a whole week since I last got the chance to blog?!?.........but it has. I never thought I would understand my parents comments about 'time flying by' a child it always boggled my mind on how they could even allude to the fact that time went by fast, and now as a grown adult with four children, I actually think time is going by faster than my parents ever let on that it was.

I am coming to realize more and more that my leaving the public domain of the Internet is the best and healthiest thing for me. My heart gets heavy easily and my thoughts just don't seem to come across accurately through the typed word.

I have been very busy getting ready for Miss Emma Sage's IEP meeting. What is an IEP? Well, to me it is the worst experience of my is something that is so very important, but it is also something I dread. I am completely prepared on my a parent and as Emma Sage's home teacher....yes, we home school. I've home schooled all of my children right along with their attending public school. We expand on what is done in the class and I taught each one of my children to read before they entered Kindergarten, including Miss Emma Sage. While she is not at the levels her siblings were going into K, she is very darn close. She is mastering the first pre-primer sight word list by Dolch and her understanding of the alphabet and phonetical sounds is wonderful and improving every day. There is a very interesting article regarding 'Teaching Reading to Teach Talking' for children with Down syndrome and a philosophy that I am finding to be so true for Miss Emma Sage.

I've been out of sorts lately, [what is it about the gray, cool days of winter], so trying to chauffer four active, involved children around [Rick is away in the tropics and I'm flying solo] and a full, active, delightful, joyous house full of children during the day, on top of the chores [does the laundry basket ever stay empty?] and then pulling my back out, I have had a few moments where the tears just started flowing. When this happens, and it happened big time tonight reading an e-mail, it becomes clearer and clearer to me that I truly need to cocoon myself for a while and just breathe deep and let the river of life carry me down stream, without trying to paddle back up!

and of coarse,,,,,,when these moments happens, it is almost eerie that Little Miss just happens to reach out and touch my heart, with a kiss, a hug,,,,a smile, a laugh and all is right with my world.

Oh, and One more cool thing that happened today, Little Miss got the thrill of her life and got to ride bareback with Ms. Bonnie on a dapple-gray draft horse. She was just so excited and besides herself on how high up they were and that they were on the 'pretty gray' [as Emma Sage calls Buster]. I thought she would be afraid because Buster is a far cry from the pony she rides [like 15 hands maybe not 15, but close]. Of coarse I didn't have my camera with me,,,,,actually I did, but the batteries had died from earlier in the day but I didn't have time to recharge them. Next time I promise, as you know how I love to take pictures!

I hope you enjoy the pictures of the fun we had......and hopefully I'll be back before the end of seven days.

So what have we been doing for a week? Hanging around! lol!!!!! Posted by Picasa

And she has been digging for buried treasures....... Posted by Picasa

....and let your self go......enjoying the thrill and joy of being a child and getting to play on magical slides such as this one. Posted by Picasa