So, we are going to Florida this week so this will be short and sweet. I will definitely have updated pictures when we get back, but here are a couple that I took in the last month in the meantime. It is amazing how fast these kids are growing! Ava goes for her 4 month check up next week, and Tyler is now 2 1/2. Boy does time fly.

As long as it is not bad news

Today was our first physical therapy session, and it went pretty well. Ava was very cooperative which just amazes me. The lady comes in, strips the poor child down to her diaper and proceeds to mess with her hands, feet, head, etc. She flops her on her side, tummy, back and if she could have she probably would have hung her upside down! And Ava just smiled at her and cooed away. It was too cute! Don't get me wrong, I am very thankful that the therapist was here, and I believe she did a wonderful job working with her and testing her strength.
Ava has hypertonia which is increased muscle tone. This is usually seen the opposite way as in low muscle tone, so the therapist was watching her extra closely. All of the "red flags" that she was looking for Ava did not have. Whew! She still needs the therapy, but her situation could have been much, much worse. I will take that as good news and run with it!
Her neuro check up was yesterday, and her head circumference is right on track with a normal baby. Actually, it is perfect; riding right along the 50th percentile. So, the shunt is set at the correct pressure. Her height shot up to the point where the neuro took a double take at the chart. She is excelling at something:)
 I will take this week as progress in the right direction!

My Calling

Well, I believe it was meant to be. I have verbally accepted the role of leading up the chapter for the South Carolina for th ePediatric Hydrocephalus Foundation, Inc (PHF for short). I don't think I have been excited about like this in a very long time! I keep checking my email hourly waiting on the next step....even though it is the weekend and no one is really working:) That just shows you how I feel about this. So, the website is Check it out and read what the Illions have started and conquered so far. I can't wait to be a part of this and see what awareness I can bring and what funds I can contribute to finding a cure or at least a more reliable way to live with this lifelong condition.

Now to the family, everyone is doing well! I believe that Ava was intently watching me eat my waffle this morning....GREAT SIGN! Looks like we may be on track to start cereal in the next few weeks! She also loves to smile and talk. She is definitely the social butterfly of the family and will make a great spokesperson for her cause:) We have a neuro follow up tomorrow, we start the physical therapy process and Wednesday and we switch Early Intervention specialists in the next couple of weeks so that she can receive vision therapy as well. So far so great! Thank you Lord for all that you have given us and her!

For Tyler, he is welll.....a 2 year old. We are trying to get through the "temper tantrum" phase before I completely lose my mind. Other than that, he is smart, energetic and a fantastic big brother. We are taking him to see Mickey Mouse next week which is his FAVORITE cartoon. The only one he will really sit and watch. I am curious if he will actually go near Mickey or not since he has Michael's fear of characters (including Santa - that was a disaster!). I will definitely get lots of pictures!

As always, thanks for keeping up with the Pierce's, and thanks for the prayers. I will be in touch soon with more information on my new undertaking and on Ava's appointments.

A thought crossed my mind

Since having Ava, I started school back yesterday. I should say that I started going back to classes and not just online. Many people came up and asked me how the new baby was doing. I told them that she was doing fantastic and was already 3 months old, and I was just loving life. Everything was good.

As I was riding home last night (in my nice and quiet car with no kids), a thought crossed my mind. This thought comes very frequently; almost daily. What if I had lost her? Could you imagine having to answer those questions when coming back to school? This thought comes and goes because I know of a friend of a friend who lost their newborn in November due to a rare infection. How does she do it? I pray quite regularly for that couple and ask God to ease their pain and help them through this horrible time, but I never really stopped and thought of how hard it really must be for them. This opened my eyes. Very wide.

So, I write this morning to thank God for blessing me with my children no matter what obstacles are given to us. I thank Him for giving me Ava and taking care of her. It may be harder and more stressful with her situation, but it could definitely have gone another way. Thank you. And thank you all for your prayers, thoughts and support. Without friends and family, life would be a hundred times more difficult. Probably impossible.