Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Izzy's 3rd Birthday Bash

We had a wonderful time celebrating Israel's 3rd birthday with loved ones. Thank you to each one of you who came (And to those of you who were unable to make it for various reasons, we know you were he in thought). We love you and are grateful for the role you play in Izzy's life. Here are some pictures of the fun day he/we had! (Izzy absolutely LOVES Angry Birds and was super excited about his theme!)

Monday, March 19, 2012

Israel Over Time

I absolutely love this little tradition I accidentally started. When Israel was turning one I made a photo card of pictures of him over the first year of his life, one each month, to send out as a birthday announcement. I loved seeing the growth. So I just keep doing it each year now :-) But not as an invitation, it's just for me...and we you guys too. Amazing to look at how much he has changed, but also ways he has stayed the same. What a little treasure I have!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Happy 3rd Birthday Israel

Dear Israel,
Happy Birthday big 3 year old boy! It seems so hard to believe that it's been three years since you came into this world and forever changed my life. You will never know the impact you have had on my heart or the way you completely changed my view of the world. You are amazing. Every day I learn something new from you. You remind me that nothing is impossible. That I can achieve anything I set my mind to, because I watch you do it all the time. You are driven and determined. You are sweet and loving. You have an amazing spirit that everyone can feel. Your eyes are one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen. Your smile carries power. I wish I could somehow open up my heart so you could see just exactly how much love there is in there for you, because I just don't feel like these words do it justice. I want to remember everything about you, every smile, tear, step, laugh, hug, triumph, hard time. I take pictures and blog in hopes it will help me to remember. And someday I will show this to you. I pray you will always know just how much I love you, how incredibly proud of you I am, how much you changed my life for the better, but most importantly - how much Jesus loves you and how proud he is of you and how much you have changed eternity for Him by just being you! You amaze me everyday, by just being you! How did I get so blessed to be your Mama?! I love you precious boy.
Love, Mommy

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Last Day of Being 2

I'm sure I will say this every birthday...but seriously...I have NO idea how another year has already passed and Izzy is turning 3! I'm working on a birthday blog...but it needs a bit more time. So for now I thought I better at least post a picture of his last day being 2 years old. My how he has grown!!!

Friday, March 16, 2012

iPad Update

Well, Izzy has very well mastered his iPad...not only the speech program, but also navigating through iPad and many of the games as well (I swear he is better than me at Angry Birds!). It is amazing to watch this little boy. He is a super fast learner...show him something once and he's got it! He is now requesting things in three word sentences instead of just one word requests. He knows what most of the pictures mean and where they are located. And there is WAY less frustration in our home! We are continually grateful for this wonderful gift!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Physical Therapy Update

As you might remember from past posts, Izzy has been receiving physical therapy (PT) from a fantastic therapist named Shannon at Shriner's twice a month since February 2010. She has been there with Izzy through everything...from the day he received his first pair of legs. She has become family and we all are beyond thankful for the role she plays in our life. The day we stop therapy will be bitter sweet for sure. I can't imagine not seeing Shannon twice a month!

Along with that he has also had PT at home through Early Intervention once a month for even longer than that (I can't remember when we started...but I want to say I think Izzy was around 6-8 months?!). Izzy has had two different therapist there and we just learned that Sarah (our current therapist) is moving. While we are excited for her new adventure in her life, she will be missed in our life for sure.
(This isn't a great pic...I better get a good one at our last visit next week!)

In January of this year we started a 8 week intensive physical therapy treatment program locally with a new therapist. Izzy went twice a week and met with a great therapist named Trent. They got along wonderfully and Izzy made leaps and bounds in the 16 times we were there! Some might ask "Why so much PT?" Trent had a perfect analogy, which is this..."If you were training to run a marathon, you wouldn't just run twice a month and expect to do well. You would need to train multiple times a week. And with each time you would get better and better." It is the same thing with Izzy and walking. He is learning to run his own "marathon" of sorts. Walking with prosthetic legs at such a young age requires a ton or work. Izzy worked so hard and I am VERY proud of him. He went from not taking any independent steps (Meaning not using a walker or holing onto anything or anyone's hands), to taking 15 steps...35...70...100...300...and we stopped counting! While Izzy still prefers to use his walker (of which he has absolutely mastered) he can walk independently. Now he just needs more practice and to gain more confidence in his abilities.
(Izzy & Trent playing their own version of "Angry Birds")

One thing I have learned from all three of these different physical therapists is that they absolutely love their job. They heard their calling for life and jumped into it. I am SO very thankful for that, and Izzy one day will be too.They are all amazing at what they do and the ways they interact with children. It blesses my heart to watch them work. Their ability to be super creative in getting Izzy to work when he thinks he is playing a game always amazes me. And the way they are tough enough to not be effected when Izzy gets mad at them for making him do something hard, yet at the same time being sensitive to his every need is a gift. Thank you Shannon, Sarah & Trent for everything you do for Izzy (And our whole family)...I hope you know just how much you are loved and appreciated.