Life with Ella and Emerson

This is a blog dedicated to my beautiful daughters, Ella and Emerson. Emerson was diagnosed with a rare, genetic disorder called Williams Syndrome when she was 5 months old.

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Location: Wisconsin, United States

Friday, October 26, 2007


This week my poor little girls have been so sick. It started on Sunday morning, they both woke up with fevers and Ella had a cough. Well, Ella's cough just got worse and worse. Yesterday, she went to the doctor's and was diagnosed with Walking Pneumonia. Emerson doesn't have a cough, but is so wiped out during the day and then not sleeping well at night. Maybe I should take her in to the doctor as well, but her symptoms are "really tired". It has been a long week, on top of everything Brian was out of town half the week for work. Nice timing. .

I just peeked in at Emerson who was watching Sesame Street . When I left her she was sitting upright. Poor thing.

Our new house is about 8 weeks from being completed. Now we are entering all the fun stuff. All of the millions of decisions we made, now we get to see them. I am trying not to second guess myself and just be confident in my choices. Unfortunately, our current house has been on the market since June and we have not had a call on it in about 2 months. Not good. I buried a St. Joseph and have said my Novena. In this market, St. Joseph can only do so much. :)

Other Emerson news, she is completely off the Calcilo and has been for a few weeks. She seems to be tolerating the soy milk just fine and we will get her calcium checked in a couple weeks. I had her speech therapy increased to once a week, she was only getting once a month, terrible, I know. I hope it makes a difference, but I am not overly-optimistic considering she lives with one. Anyway, her receptive language seems okay at this point. Her sounds and sorta words at this point are really limited. She says some animal sounds, cow, monkey, duck, horse, use to do dog. She once in awhile says, hi, mama, dada, ella, nigh-nigh. Oh well, I really didn't mean to complain about this, but sometimes it is frustrating that I went to school for something for 6 years and have many more years of student loans to pay off and I can't make any significant head way with my own child. In fact, it is the area that she is making the LEAST amount of progress in! I know that I just have to buck-up and she will talk on her own time when she is ready. Just wish I could help her along.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Picture Day

I dread getting my girls pictures taken. It should be fun and exciting and instead I just feel nervous. I feel so much pressure to get a great picture. Sounds ridiculous, I know, but today all my anticipatory dread and fear were very founded. I started getting the girls ready about an hour before leaving. Have you all noticed Emerson's hair lately? She has the tightest curls I have ever seen. Her hair is equal part adorable and maddening. When I wash it out, it is actually quite long and goes down below her shoulders. After washing, I have about 2 minutes to get a comb through it after spraying leave-in conditioner. So anyway, I messed with her hair for about 20 minutes until I was satisfied. We get to the studio and try to keep Emerson from drooling on her outfit and Ella from peeing in her pants. I must add that Emerson at this point is all smiles. After 25 minutes of waiting they call us. Of course, all smiles from Emerson instantly stop. She stares blankly ahead at the cranky photographer who seems very put off. Ella does a great job smiling picture after picture with Emerson zoning out with her tongue sticking slightly out (not cute!) Finally, Emerson starts to cooperate a smidge when Ella proudly announces to the photographer, "I'm all out of smiles! They're all gone." She's three, she's stubborn, and she means it. Photo shoot over! UGH!!

Emerson is such a character lately and is just developing in leaps and bounds. She is so funny and now very much enjoys making us laugh. Here is a short video of her eating oatmeal which I think she really does like. She definitely knows these goofy faces crack us up. What you do miss at the end of the video is her spitting the oatmeal out into her hand and flinging it all over the floor. Too funny.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Baby Steps (literally)!

Emerson has been so much fun lately. She is just an absolute charmer and is constantly showing off her "bag of tricks" to anyone who is looking her way. We were at the doctor's office today and when the nurse walked in it was, "wave, wave, arms so big, mouth raspberries, cute sniff-face with the nose (for some reason she loves this one!), huge smile". The nurse was very nice and acted amused.

Yesterday, we visited her feed team and her calcium levels are still slightly above the normal range (ionized calcium 5.44 (4.5-5.3 normal) and calcium 10.7 (8.7-9.8 normal). What the heck?! Isn't she supposed to out grow this by 18 months?? She turns 20 months tomorrow. Anyway, her GI doc and team came up with a game plan, but did tell me that they have never had a child with hypercalcemia before. Me either! The new game plan is to cut back on her Calcilo/formula concoction to about 16 oz per day and introduce more developmentally appropriate (their words, not mine) liquids via sippy cup. These liquids have to be low calcium, high protein (10% or less calcium, 4g+ protein). So far I've found a certain brand soy milk that meets this criteria, some yogurt drinks and V8 splash. We'll see how she likes this. Today, I couldn't get her to drink the soy milk from the sippy cup, but she did take it from the bottle. One step at a time. Any other suggestions from moms who have dealt with the calcium issues would be greatly appreciated.

Here is a video clip of Emerson taking a couple baby steps. She is gaining confidence every day and you can see just how proud she is!