Hello Summer

Oh how I have missed you the last 8 long months.   We had a crappy winter and an even worse spring this year in Calgary so it is nice that summer has finally arrived.  It has been so stinkin' hot here the last few days even the mosquitos seem to have taken cover.  I thank god and my DH for the A/C we installed a few years back.  While it's lovely to have the hot weather outside I still like a nicely cooled house to sleep in.

Our day are spent outside in the backyard rotating between the sand box and little pool.  We have consumed far more Popsicles that anyone should eat and pretty much thrown out all forms of healthy food but you know what I really don't care (at least for now).  It's just so nice that the kids can be outside and get lots of fresh air

We have stampede starting here on Friday but I doubt we will take in any of the events.  I think the girls are still a little young to enjoy the midway and honestly, I just don't want to fight the crowds.  Although I have always wanted to try a deep fried Mars bar so it might be worth it.  :}

Hayden leaves on Saturday for my parents place on the Sunshine Coast in BC.  He will be there almost three weeks before the girls and I ruin his fun by arriving for almost a month.

I'm also super excited that Faruq and I are actually getting away for a little "adult" alone time.  We have booked a trip to Vegas during the third week in August.  My mom has offered to keep the kids on her own so we quickly took advantage of that offer.  We have a friend who works in the travel industry and she got us a good deal on flights and accommodations.

It has been almost 8 years since we have been away alone together.  I love my children and they are my life but Faruq & I really need to start doing this a little more often.  So if the kids don't kill my mother while we are gone I'm sure we will be able to convince her to do it a little more often.

We have Laila's speech assessment tomorrow and I'm both happy and apprehensive to see what the outcome will be.  I'm sure it will be nothing but positive steps forward.

So I hope that wherever you are the sun is shining brightly on you and you are enjoying some warm summery weather

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On Vacation

I feel as if I'm neglecting this little blog and truthfully I have been but for excellent reasons.  The kids and I are on vacation in Gibsons, British Columbia.  It is a truly beautiful place and we have just been so busy playing it hasn't left much computer time.

We arrived last Saturday after leaving Calgary on Friday morning.  The girls were amazing on the trip down and hardly fussed at all. We had a few issued with Laila in the hotel as she had never stayed in one before but once we explained it she seemed fine.   The ferry was another first for both girls but they really enjoyed it.

Faruq managed to get a few days off so he was able to spend a bit of time here with us before returning home this morning.  We will miss him but the kids have lots to keep them busy so the time will go quickly.

I have taken lots of pictures but haven't had time to transfer them to the computer yet but will post some when I have a minute.

I hope you are all having as lovely a summer break as we are and the weather is warm !

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Laila's Journey (Part 4)

It seems lately all I have been posting about is lovely Laila but today we got great news which I had to share.  She had her hearing test at the Children's Hospital and I'm thrilled report there is NO HEARING LOSS.

We have been prepping her for a few weeks now and I think it really paid off.   She was prepared for what was going to happen so there was no panic attacks by either her or I.  Faruq actually didn't get to the appointment until it was almost over so I had to entertain Sophie which left Laila on her own for most of it.

The audiologist said that Laila did great and there is not a thing wrong with her hearing or ears.  I was so sure they were going to find an issue that for a minute I had mixed emotions.  But I quickly realized this was great news and now we can just concentrate on the speech portion.

She also had her dentist appointment on Friday and our dentist couldn't find any problems with her mouth or teeth that would cause any speech problems.

We will continue to work at home with her on speech exercises until she starts school in September but at least we have cleared a few more hurdles.

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Laila's Journey (Part 3)

What a difference a few days can make.  Last Wednesday we thought we had a plan in place for Laila with regards to preschool but Thursday morning that all changed.  As I wrote in the previous post everything changed after that meeting with Alberta Health Services.  It moved so quickly and I really needed to digest it all.

We got to tour the school and it is just lovely.  It's is a great location and the setup is perfect.  Laila got to play while I met with the administrator and she loved it.   Truthfully it reminded me a lot of the preschool that she was scheduled to go to.

The program is 5 days a week for 3 hours a day with only 10 kids in the class.  There is a teacher, a speech therapist and Occupational therapist in every class at all times. As well they have every other type of specialist on staff when needed.   They take the month of September to evaluate each child and put a structured plan in place to work on their specific disabilities.  At the end of the year each child is evaluated as to whether they will return the next year.  If she qualifies she could potentially do three years there.  I'm torn on that because while you want her to succeed and move on you want her to get all the help she needs.

It is an educational based program so they will still be learning the same things she would have at the other preschool.  But the goal of this school is to integrate the children back into the mainstream school system as soon as possible.

So after a few days to absorb it all I'm so excited for Laila to start there and know that is definitely the place she is meant to be.  I'm so thankful we had such a good therapist reviewing her last week and that she guided us through the process.  She knew what was best for her and made it happen very quickly.

Of course, now I wonder if the original therapist we were suppose to see in early June would have come to the same conclusion and had made the same quick decisions.   Two things I know for sure is that everything happens for a reason and that I feel God is very present with us during this journey.

We are on the road to success for her and that's all that truly matters.  The other positive thing to come out of this is that I now have the afternoons free to spend with little Sophie something I didn't think would happen for at least two years so I have booked her in for a music and swimming class.

Lastly, I wanted to say a very sincere thank you to all who have left encouraging comments on my blog or sent me personal emails of encouragement I do truly appreciate them all.


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Laila's Journey (Part 2)

So we had the official speech assessment through Alberta Health Services today and we pretty much got the same results that we received with the private therapist.  She is severely delayed with all aspects of speech and comprehension.  This is where it got tough for me because the last few months we have seen such big improvements with her speech that I'm not going to lie and say it didn't crush me when they presented the results.  It was everything I could do not to cry right there in the office.  But that was not going to help Laila so I managed to hold it together.

Now with this official assessment Laila qualifies for some fairly significant funding for services.  That is good news although cost was not an issue for us it is definitely welcomed.  Through the funding she will be able to attend a preschool that is specially designed for these types disabilities and where they have speech & occupational therapists on staff in the classrooms.  The only question was if they actually had a spot.  They said they would call them and let us know this afternoon.

I received a call and they do in fact have a spot in their afternoon program.  While I'm sad she will not be able to attend the preschool Hayden attended I know this other school is exactly where she belongs and they can help her blossom.  I have called the lady responsible for admissions and we have an appointment to see the school next week.

We are still hoping that the hearing test on July 18th will provide us with some answers but the positive thing with this new preschool is they have a section that specifically deals with hearing impaired children.  When we first started to suspect this problem I had actually bookmarked this school as a possibly.  Funny how things turn out.

So we need to take few days to digest everything that has transpired as it seems to being moving very fast now.  I'm sure I will have a few more cries but it will all look brighter soon.

I guess ultimately as a parent we only want good things for our kids and we never want them to experience pain and suffering of any type.  I would take this for Laila in a heartbeat but I can't so I will be there to hold her hand and help her.  Once again I know we could be dealing with something so much worse so we grateful for that.

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Hayden's Day

We had a great day celebrating Hayden's 8th birthday.  It was really low key (just the way we like it).  We started with our a family tradition of colored pancakes, turkey bacon and a fruit salad.  Hayden picked teal and purple for the pancake colors.

We then spend a few hours in the backyard playing in the wonderfully warm weather until a nasty wind storm rolled it.  Faruq took Laila and Hayden out for a bite of lunch while Sophie and I stayed home to finish the birthday cake.

We had intended on having a BBQ but Hayden opted for Edo as his birthday dinner so that was what we had.  Afterwards we played a bit longer outside then came in for baths, cake and presents.

I borrowed this idea from a few friends that have made it.  Super easy cake with M&M's and Kit Kat bars on the outside.  It was a chocolate cake with chocolate icing.  So really no calories at all.  

Hayden loved the cake !

It is near impossible to get a picture with all kids looking at the camera so this will have to do I guess.

Opening presents more LEGO and a DSi Game.

We had a great day celebrating Hayden and I really do find it hard to believe he is already 8.

Happy Birthday my sweet boy !

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To my American friends...

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Where has the time gone....

As I type this tonight I honestly can't believe that Hayden will celebrate his 8th birthday tomorrow.  I remember like it was yesterday what the labour and eventual delivery was like.  Hayden was originally scheduled to make his appearance on June 19th which was our 10 wedding anniversary.   But that day came and went with no baby.  On June 30th I started getting some of those familiar pains so we hoped we might actually have a July 1st baby but Hayden had other plans.

I had been put on the induction list at our local hospital in Fort McMurray, AB but there was 13 ladies ahead of me so I was impatiently waiting to be called.  My OB told me if I felt labor was starting to call the hospital right away.  So we called the hospital but they said the contractions weren't close enough so we waited and they actually stopped altogether that evening.  But July 2nd they started again and were close enough to go to the hospital.  I had been warned earlier in the pregnancy that this baby may have to be delivered by c-section so we really didn't know what to expect.

I was admitted and the induction process started.  I labored for the next 20 hours but it just wasn't progressing the way my OB wanted it to.  He checked me early in the morning on July 3rd and said he would return around lunch to see how it was going.  Well when he returned the decision was made quickly that we needed an emergency section as it appeared the baby was starting to show signs of distress. Up until that time I had been quite calm about it all but lost it totally.  Now I just wanted my baby.

Within 10 minutes we were in an OR and the section was started.  It was discovered that Hayden had wedged himself under my pelvic bone which meant he would have never came naturally so the decision for the section was a good one.  There were also a few other issues but the main priority was just have a healthy baby.

Hayden Alexander Suleman came screaming into the world at 1:53pm on July 3rd.  He was perfect and healthy at a whopping 8 lbs, 12 oz.

I have spoken many times about our struggles to have our family but holding this little boy made it all worth it.  He is an amazing kid and I'm so proud to be his mama.

It has been a wonderful 8 years watching him grow and I can't wait to share the next 8 years and beyond with him.

Happy Birthday my beautiful boy !!

I love you,

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