July was a very busy month, we went to NY over the 4th to see daddy's side of the family, the week of the 15th Mady and John had Safety Town ( a very cool local program for those entering Kindergarten that focuses on fire/stranger/poison and overall safety), the 17th Annabel, Madelyn, and Johnathan turned 6 years old. How can that be already?!? It truly has gone way too fast! The trio had their well child visit and all are doing well. Mady and John did have their daily inhaler switched from Flovent to Qvar to hopefully allow them to grow a little more, especially height-wise. Almost 3 weeks ago Annabel underwent an intensive potty training day at the clinic her ABA therapists work at (more on that in a bit) and thus far she has been going successfully on the potty multiple times a day but is still having fairly frequent accidents, often small drips that once her potty alarm goes off she stops and then finishes on the potty. Hoping this improves soon so we're (especially her) not homebound much longer!
In July Mady and John participated in a gymnastics session in which one of their good friends from Junior Kindergarten (JK) was in, they were so excited! Annabel had her frequent ABA sessions (currently at home 2 days a week and at ESY the other 3 days) and her weekly outside OT. Johnathan had his weekly speech (he's made great gains this summer!). To update on Annabel, this past fall we ended up having her tested for autism and she did receive a diagnosis for ASD. In March she started an intensive ABA home-based therapy and what a difference it has made! She is learning PECs and is able to use her pictures for communication (verbal has also increased), she's learning to wait and accept no (still a work in progress but way better than it was), matching, people identification, appropriate toy play, social interaction (ring around the rosie, playing ball, etc with siblings and other peers), and now toilet training. We can't speak highly enough for what ABA and specifically her therapists and BCBAs have done for her/us! The intensity of her negative behaviors were leading down a bad path for our family and she's so much happier and calmer now as are all of us. Very excited to see what the next 6 months will bring for her!
Katherine amazes us - all the things she's learning, saying, doing. Seeing the "typical" way of development just makes us think how hard it all is/was for the trio and honestly makes us sad at times for them. She has learned so much from watching her older siblings, both good and bad of course! She is a very spirited little one too (all 4 of our kids are very strong-willed, just like mommy and daddy)! She's definitely more shy than the trio were but I'm ok with that, she'll outgrow it soon enough.
This past weekend we had the trios and Kate's b-day parties. BJ's family was in from NY and the kids had a ball with their cousin Austin, missing him already! We had Annabel's ABA therapist come for the party so there would be someone will full attention on her for potty training and to work on her participation with the party and with social interactions with her peers. She actually opened gifts and was overall very happy, by far the best party she's had in years! On Sunday we took Mady and John to their first Tigers baseball game, what a great game! Perfect weather, lots of fun, and of course the 12th inning win made it very memorable! Here's some pictures from the weekend (more to come, having problems posting pics).