photo taken by Angela Speiker

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Painting project complete

Emerald's room is done. Finally! Well, almost......we still have to retouch the wallpaper she peeled just after we moved in to the house. Emerald is pretty happy with her new "horsey" room and loves all the color. It is colorful, that's for sure!! Hopefully she'll be happy with these colors for years to come. The best part about it--she wants to keep her room clean now b/c she thinks it will go away if the room isn't clean anymore. I love it!
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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

4 months old

This is Zachary on the day he turned 4 months old. He is getting to be such a big boy. His adjusted age is 2 months now. He smiles quite often and loves to coo and "talk" with us. He is moving around a lot more these days, lifting his legs, rolling from side to side. I really think he recognizes mom and dad's voices and turns toward us when we are talking to him. We are still working on those neck muscles. This week he even giggled for the first time! A sound that truly is a song sent from heaven above! Zachary has remained healthy and we continue to be thankful for this. Just this week he has also been sleeping even longer, something I love dearly. 4 nights in a row he has slept for about 6-7 hours straight, and this mom feels like a different woman. We are getting our baby boy baptized on Mother's day (isn't that a sweet day for me?). For now we continue to watch as the sibling love continues to develop into something wonderful as Zachary is really paying more attention to the chaos around him. We have a couple more weeks before we go for a well-check with Dr. Mike. Then we can officially see how much he weighs. I weighed him on our home scale this week and it read 10 pounds. We will see how accurate that is, although I'd guess it is pretty close. What a blessing to have all my children healthy and loving one another!!!!
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How much he's grown

4 months old.

Zachary has found his hands and seems to always have one near his mouth these days.

About 2 weeks old.

I was pretty impressed when I looked back over these photos. It really shows just how far Zachary has come! The last 2 pictures were taken on January 9th, and the first 2 were taken on April 27th. Our little lobster is growing bigger!
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Friday, April 17, 2009

Please support my cause

This year we are going to join several other families from the NICU to walk in the March for Babies walk in downtown Kansas City. We are so super excited for this event!! Aunt Heidi, Uncle Jeff, and Josiah are going to be joining us this year as we walk, which is such a fun time for us to spend together.

My question to you is this--have you donated to our cause? I try really hard to not ask much of others. It is hard for me to ask for anything. However, this organization has done so much for our family this year and I have to do everything I can to give back. Within 24 hours of Zachary's birth he received surfactant, a lung treatment developed as a result of March of Dimes-funded research. Without this drug we don't know what might have happened to our premature baby. Instead, today he is a healthy, thriving little man! They have done so many other things for both my family, and yours and you might not have even realized it.

I recently added a counter to the bottom of my blog. I am amazed at just how many people view this site!! Thank you for taking the time to do so. Within a week I had 250 hits on this site. Now, I know some of them were from myself when I came on to add to the blog. I was thinking that if everyone who went on just donated $1 think of what that could do for March of Dimes. There is no minimum amount you could donate, any small amount helps. Take the chance to skip the Starbucks, the dollar spot at Target (one of my favorites), or buy one less Diet Dr. Pepper a week and grab a glass of water instead. Ok, maybe the last suggestion is just for me, but whatever works for you. We have a goal of $500 and I know we can reach it, especially with your help. Donate in honor of Zachary. Donate for his friends from the NICU--Greyson, Isaiah, Dawson, Miranda, Brynn, Zane, and many others. Donate in honor of all the babies who are no longer with us. Donate in honor of your healthy child at home.

Again, asking for donations is not something that is easy for me to do. Asking for anything is hard for this VERY independent minded person. However, I am asking because this falls so close to my heart. We walk in 2 weeks, on May 3rd. We appreciate your consideration!

Easter family time

Dayveon and Emerald loved playing together

2 wonderful Pankewich daddies

Nana & Pop Pop were happy to see how much Zachary has grown

Zach was happy to have all his family around for Easter
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Thursday, April 16, 2009

Coloring those Easter eggs

Calvin enjoyed dying eggs, but had a lot of help from Daddy.

Showing off the messy hands

Aunt Heidi was super excited to help color some eggs

Daddy and Calvin preparing to color some eggs
Nana helping Emerald with eggsPosted by Picasa

Egg Hunting

Two happy kids after collecting their eggs.

Zachary stayed inside on this cold Easter day. Why is it always cold on Easter morning?
Waiting to go outside. I didn't even have to pose them like this!

The Easter bunny hid eggs in our yard while we were at church! The kids had fun finding them before the rain came in. Posted by Picasa

Congrats to Dawson!

Many of you may have heard me talk about Dawson. He was a sweet baby in the NICU with Zachary. His mommy is from Hutchinson, which is near Skip's hometown of McPherson. She was also a teacher. We had a lot in common. We were next door and across the hall from Dawson for about 4-5 weeks of our 6 week stay. Needless to say, we got pretty close and I have been keeping up with Dawson since we left the hospital. I've also asked for prayers for Dawson on many occasions. Dawson got to go home yesterday!! He was 5 months old on Wednesday. After 5 long months in both the NICU and the PICU at KU Med, Dawson is finally where he belongs--home with his mommy. We send out our prayers for continued progress and many wonderful blessings for Dawson and Christy!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Happy Easter

While I know Zachary wasn't too happy (he was quite hungry by this point) it is the best shot I got of the 3 kids together.

I kind of thought that was a pretty sweet photo

Zachary on his first Easter. His outfit (0-3 months, the smallest they made) was huge on him. I know the hat is a little cheesy, but Calvin wore it on his first Easter. Zach had to wear it, too.

My silly girl posing for the camera in her Emerald-esque way

I have to admit, Calvin looked pretty studly in his Easter outfit.
Emerald thought Zachary's bunny ears were funny

Mommy & Zachary

We had a very blessed Easter. Easter, as you know, is a very sweet time for me. Skip and I got engaged at Easter, we had placement with both Emerald and Calvin just before Easter, and we continued counting our many blessings this Easter. It has been sweet hearing Emerald repeat (in her own terms) the true meaning of Easter. She seems to understand that "the bad men killed Jesus and He died on the cross. Then He rose up on Easter." I'm pretty proud of her.

It was a full weekend. We started painting Emerald's room on Friday, and continued to work on it over the weekend. We aren't quite done yet. Sunday Skip's parents came up and went to church with us. The Easter bunny brought some wonderful things in baskets while we were at church and even hid some eggs in the house, yard, and on Nana's lap. Good thing she is such a sound napper! :) She didn't even hear him come in the house! Jeff, Heidi, and Josiah came over that night for supper. The next day we hosted Skip's grandmother, 2 aunts, and 2 cousins. We painted Easter eggs (pics to come) and showed Zachary and Josiah just how much fun Easter can be. I think the kids enjoyed a little too much sugar with both candy and dessert! Posted by Picasa

The "During"

Emerald has been helping by painting the first few brushstrokes of each color. This was her last one, the pink color. She wanted to write her name.

Here you can see the blue (on the right), the green and orange. Up above the closet will be pink, but it's not quite done yet.

Painting is hard work! During the paint job we have moved Emerad into Zach's room, on Calvin's toddler bed (not that she really needs the bed or anything). Zach is in our room, still in his bassinet for now. We did actually borrow a crib this weekend from a friend (a former NICU nurse that took care of Zach). Hopefully we'll get that set up soon and he can move up to his big boy bed ;)

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