Friday, May 29, 2009

Cracker Casserole

That got your attention, didn't it? It's actually broccoli casserole, but Jack won't eat anything green, so he thinks I make it with brown and green crackers. He actually believes it. Anyway, that's one of the dishes I made for our cookout when CAYLIE came. We had to tell everyone to not say the word "broccoli". It was rather amusing.

We had a great time. Jolene and the kids came over Saturday around lunch and I suggested Bojangles chicken, so they could experience some southern culture. I had a few concerns when we ordered because it's all spicy now. I asked a few too many questions and Jolene said they were going to spit in our food. Back at home we got ready for CAYLIE to come at 3:00. That gave us an hour to work before the others came. Jack practiced a few commands and gave her reward bones. Then Kyria and Heidi put on the special harness for Jack to use for walking and going up the stairs. It will take a lot of practice, but it went well. They have to develop a rhythm to their movements.

After we got up the stairs, she sniffed around a bit then went into Jack's room. We had her get up on the bed and snuggle on his blankets. She is borrowing Ike, who is a stuffed dog Jack's teachers gave him in preschool. It will carry his scent back to the prison with her.

People came and MaryLou finally got to meet Kyria and Heidi. Kyria founded paws4people and Heidi is the trainer for the prison in Hazelton, West Virginia. Karen, who is the trainer here in North Carolina, came with her family, as well as Eliot's brother and family and a friend from across the street. The last time the "paws" were in they got to meet Jack's godparents, Mark and Diane. Eventually we hope they get to meet many more people.

The next morning Karen and CAYLIE went to church with us. Pastor Ward and MaryLou introduced her to the congregation and of course, Jack wanted to talk in the microphone. It was also announced that approximately $2700 was raised at the men's BBQ auction for paws4people in Jack's name. In addition, we are hoping that Thrivent provides some matching funds. We'd like to thank everyone at Advent Lutheran Church in Charlotte that donated or participated in the cause.

CAYLIE was so good and stayed quietly in the pew. She did go up for communion though. She is after all, Lutheran now. Everyone was very kind and enjoyed petting her. It was sad to see her go. We may not see her until she graduates in the fall.

We just love CAYLIE and she will be so good for Jack. We still need a lot of help with fundraising. If you feel you can donate to such a wonderful cause, click here.

Mitchell and CAYLIE get acquainted

Kyria helps Jack with some training

Jack shows early success

The dynamic duo

Heidi, CAYLIE, Jack and Kyria

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Jack at the campground

We had the absolutely best 4 day weekend! My sister Jolene, her boyfriend Lonnie, his daughter Abby and my nephew Mitchell came down from Ohio. Jolene's dogs also came; Chiquita and Chance. Lonnie has gotten into Nascar, so the whole family came down for the race. Jack was so excited about going to the campground. He has never been and Ms. Cook (his individual assistant) gave him Jiffy Pop to use. They didn't have a campfire, so we did it in the camper. He loved it.

Anyway, I'm getting ahead of myself. They came on Thursday and got here a little early, so they came to the house. Lonnie backed that big camper into our driveway and Jack thought it was a bus when he came home from school. We let him ride in it to the campground, which was actually quite nice. Jack was fascinated with all the planes pulling banners and helicopters, not to mention countless buses going by. Very fun for a 6 year old. We all played corn hole, which is a game people in Ohio play. Jack won of course.

We spent some time Friday, Saturday and Sunday at the campground just hanging out. By Sunday he was done. Panic over bugs set in. I'm surprised it took him so long. He has developed an absolute fear of flying insects, especially flies. Until then he had a great time. He loved all the attention from his Aunt Jolene and kept her busy getting him snacks. He ate the entire time. Abby and Mitchell were good about letting him hang out in the camper and Lonnie played corn hole with him.

Our weekend continued with a visit with our precious CAYLIE which I will blog about next...

Monday, May 18, 2009

Jack's birthday

Jack had a great birthday on Sunday. I've never seen a child consume so much sugar in one day in my entire life! It's amazing he slept Sunday night at all. Please enjoy the pictures.

A breakfast of champions - more sugar!
Asha and Seth met us at Chuck E. Cheese

Jack and Seth were both celebrating birthdays

The Chuckster came over to say "Hi" to Jack
(and yes, he's still eating sugar)

Later, we visited Kris and Shannon in their new apartment

Jack and Kris playing with the new Spiderman toy

even more sugar...

Monday, May 11, 2009

A weekend in Chapel Hill

We had a great time in Chapel Hill this weekend visiting with Kris, Jake, Shannon and Natalie and their friends. We arrived on Friday and had dinner at one of our favorite places, Pepper's. Saturday, we went shopping and had a great dinner at The Carolina Inn. Late Saturday night, we took Jake out on the town to celebrate his turning 21 at midnight. Let's just say we REALLY celebrated. I haven't stayed up that late (or early) in years. On Sunday, we continued to celebrate Jake's birthday as well as Mother's Day. I know Lisa really enjoyed her Mother's Day having all three of her boys with her.

When we arrived home on Sunday, we received more really good news. Apparently the Advent Lutheran Men's BBQ auction went extremely well. They were raising money to donate to paws4people in Jack's name. We don't have a firm figure yet but it was much higher than expected and there could possibly be matching funds from Thrivent. We will let you know the final amount when we hear it.

I've loaded some pictures from the weekend below (in no particular order).

Kris and Shannon at the Carolina Inn

Jack with his friend at the Mother's Day picnic

Jack gets to sit in a blue Chapel Hill firetruck!

All of us outside Jake's apartment

Jake and Natalie at the Carolina Inn

Jack looking like Thing One or is it Two?

Monday, May 4, 2009

Jack and school

Not much going on. Although, Lisa attended Jack's IEP meeting at school and because he is doing so well, he is not eligible for summer school. It will make the summer a bit harder for Lisa but that is great news as far as Jack's scholastic progress. Apparently, he is ready for 1st grade. Pretty amazing considering all he's been through. The medicine for appetite stimulation seems to be working well. He seems hungry ALL the time. Hopefully, we will see some significant weight gain soon. We are looking forward to visiting with Kris and Jake in Chapel Hill this weekend to celebrate Jake's 21st birthday. Woo hoo!!