Another season is here and it's time for an update on Heath and his amazing adventures.
First off, he is growing like the perennials that have exploded in our back garden. We measured him at home last month and he was 35 1/4". A couple weeks later at the doctor's he was nearly 36". It seems like he gets longer and string-beanier overnight. Here he is looking none too babyish with his six-year-old friend Anna (whom you may remember from their lovely wedding ceremony last year.)
Check out that posture! We have been doing lots of talking about "ducky butt" and "tucky butt" and he really works to keep his backside behind him so he can maintain a straight spine in spite of low muscle tone. He also received Theratogs, an ingenious trunk-compression undergarment that prevents slumping and helps him "sit like a duck," in his words. Wearing the Togs, he has even begun to stand independently for a couple seconds at a time as I pulse my hands on and off his ankles!
Heath's personality comes out more and more as he becomes a more expressive talker. He has so much to say, and I always get a chuckle out of writing down some of his expressions in his diary every night before bed.
"The zookeeper is going back to his house and all the animals are following him. Even the little armadillo!"
"They put the bad guys in the movie to make it more happy."
"I'm going to Vienna in the morning!" (Like Captain Von Trapp in The Sound of Music.)
In PT news, Heath is walking better and better with a one-hand assist. Here we are getting around preschool during the May Day party as the kids sang and gave flowers to the staff.
The Maypole dance afterward was adorable, as they sang a special song.
Heath is super lucky to have fabulous Teacher Melissa next year as well! Right now Heath is the only three-year old in his class, so he will enjoy getting to be one of the big boys, and getting to attend three mornings a week.
A big milestone in Heath's eyes is being able to high-kneel on a chair like the big kids when we hit a cafe.
Heath works harder than most, but he is as happy and exuberant as a kid could be.
Though he does have his shy side...
.....and, like any three-year old, he can be a drama king when things don't go his way. Here he is brooding because we didn't let him sit in the wet grass.
He likes music class...
cultivating important relationships....
...and hanging out with his Speech Pathologist crush, Jen, at Talking School.
We got a big favor from Jeni Berry, who transported an upsized footmuff (i.e., super cozy, sheepskin stroller sack) all the way from Italy for us, since Heath had outgrown the baby version I bought in Austria when I was pregnant. This thing is a necessity in Montana, where we are continuing to get hail well into May! Heath spent our first walk testing out the new muff with his head buried under the abundant softness.
Peanut and I have been especially busy with the renovation of the new distillery. Heath has a great time here racing at top speed in his walker and is very patient with our dinner conversation about roofing, light fixtures, bathrooms, signage, paint, upholstery, etc., etc., etc. We are excitedly preparing to open our doors in July.
Last week, we had one of the best adventures of all: a trip to visit a service dog breeder in Stevensville. Heath was delighted to meet Lulu, an eight month old Golden Retriever who was extremely calm and sweet with him. I was amazed at how she modulated her puppy energy once she perceived that he was an unsteady walker. Luckily, there will be another litter from Lulu's parents coming up this fall. We plan to have one of the pups trained as a mobility dog to assist Heath with balance and breaking falls as well as helping him stand up from the floor and transfer to seats, or pick up dropped objects. It will take 18 months for the dog to become fully trained and certified and he or she will live with us while in training. I'm sure the bond between boy and dog will grow all on its own.
We are wishing everyone a wonderful spring! Thanks for keeping up with us.