Sunday, May 25, 2014

Happy 2nd Birthday Avery

Dear Avery,

It was two years ago today, on the busy Friday evening of Memorial Day weekend that you made your big arrival into our family. You have kept us busy every day since! Today you are a smart, feisty, beautiful two year old. You have done so much in the past 12 months. You became a big sister, you found a love for hockey, you tested out your climbing and crib diving skills and you made our hearts melt just a little more each day along the way. You are our sporty spice, our bossy Betty and our sweetheart all wrapped into one compact little package. You are the middle of our family sandwich that makes it so delicious. Ella is lucky to have a little sister to motivate her and love her (even when you have her pinned to the ground) Kellen is also lucky to have someone break the ice along the way ;-). You test Daddy and I all the time, but those tests make us all appreciate this crazy life we have just a little more.

Avery, never stop being you. Keep up that sassy attitude. Keep your love for hockey and "backetball", makeup, Minnie Mouse and party dresses. Keep the big hugs coming and ALWAYS keep us on our toes.

I love you! XXOO

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Settling In...and A Speech Update

The Tapp's are now a family of 5! Kellen completes our clan. We welcomed him April 1st and life has been a whirlwind ever since. In a short recap, we had a baby, Jason's team (Union Hockey) won a National Championship, Ella had surgery (more on that to come), and we celebrated my nephew Justin's 1st birthday. It's been almost seven weeks of fun, excitement, happy tears, plenty of diapers, and not a whole lot of sleep. I wouldn't change it for a second. These truly are the best days of our life!

Kellen is growing like a weed. He is already tipping the scales at 10+ lbs. He is happy and healthy...a very easy baby. This boy doesn't miss a meal and it shows. He already weighs what Ella weighed at a year. She was tiny!!! The girls are very good big sisters. They have adjusted pretty well. I still can't believe I am so lucky to have 3 beautiful children :-)

Getting back to Ella's surgery...she had her tubes replaced and  she had her ears and sinuses vacuumed. She also underwent an auditory brainstorm response (ABR)  while she was sedated. This test gives information about the inner ear and brain pathways for hearing. It can accurately tell us exactly what Ella can hear. We have had a number of hearing tests over the years. We know she can hear, but to what degree is always in question. Prior to this most recent surgery, Ella had been really off balance and would not respond to us calling her name. It was more than just typical 4 year old ignorance. The procedure revealed that her ears and sinuses were filled with fluid and hardened wax. She showed mild hearing loss in the left ear as well. Her recovery from surgery was very fast. The results have blown us away. She is hearing so much better and this has improved her speech clarity and expanded her vocabulary more than we ever expected. Even her ENT was impressed. He said he hasn't seen a child make such a dramatic improvement so quickly. Now we just have to monitor her closely. She will likely need to have the vacuuming procedure on a regular basis (2-3 times a year). We will also have to have regular hearing tests to see if the hearing loss is something that is degenerative or caused by the fluid. Time will tell but for now we are happy with her progress and hopeful she will continue to talk our ears off.

We have been busy, busy, busy and that trend will continue as we get ready to celebrate both girls  birthdays. Avery turns 2 next week. I can't believe it. School will also be wrapping up in a few weeks and Ella will dance in her ballet recital. I'll have lots of updates to come.