A Journey with Love and Laughter

Read about our family as we journey through life as a family, with siblings, school and spina bifida, and lots of fun and laughter along the way!

Friday, July 10, 2015

Please don't step over my son

The title of this post might seem like a metaphor.
But it is not.

What I mean is DO NOT physically lift your legs and step over my son and his walker to get by him.

Might seem like common sense right?

If not common sense, then a reasonable expectation of a polite society?
You don't push people out of the way, you don't kick puppies and you don't step over a child who is using his walker in a doorway, or anywhere for that matter.

Yeah he's about 3 feet tall, he's kind of quiet and he pulls around a red walker, but he is very good at maneuvering it in doorways and in the parking lot. And you can take an extra second out of your time to let him go by.

Let me be clear.
You DO NOT step over him

In the last weeks I saw 2 people do this to Nick.
One was a teenager and Nick was trying to get out a door and his walker was at an angle as he was going through the door. This teenager just stepped right over him and the walker in the doorway. OK, teenagers are rude, it was a one-off. Kyle and I talked about (and felt really old discussing teenagers these days)

The second one was an old man. Nick was walking through a parking lot and was going beside our car, this old man (who I thought had parked beside us and was going to his car) went into the space between our cars and then just stepped over Nick and his walker and kept going.
I was too far away to do anything but fume. And fume, and think about it, and get mad. And now decide that we need to do something.

Some people are rude, some people don't have any common sense, and some people are not aware of what is going on around them (and don't care).

But this is different.

This is putting my child in danger. When you step over a child who is pulling a walker that keeps him upright you are putting him in danger. What if his moves the walker, what if your foot gets caught on part of the walker, then you lose your balance and you fall on my son, and he falls down. And gets hurt, or gets scared, or looses confidence in his ability to walk with his walker. 

This is the size of the walker these people are stepping over

I don't really care if you are 15 years old or 95 years old. You DO NOT step over a child, he has every right to be in the space that he is in. If he is in that space, then you are not.

So we sat down and talked about what happened. Nick noticed both occurrences, but didn't really think anything about it. I told him that what these people did was wrong and it was dangerous to him. If anyone does this again to tell them (loudly) to stop.

We will also keep an eye out if this happens again and actually stop and tell these people that this is not right.

I think some large spikes at the back of the walker might be the next step to get the point across...

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Standing Frame

Nick has been using a standing frame while he has been at school.
It is a supportive frame that allows the user to weight bear without leaning on anything, and it leaves the hands and arms are free.

We had a standing frame when Nick was a baby, he got it when he was a year old with his first set of AFO's. He wasn't standing by himself yet and we wanted to get him upright with his peers and allow him to weight-bear and strengthen his legs and prepare them for supporting him.

And we used it alot to get him on his feet, and get him used to being upright.
But when he started walking in his walker, we stopped using the standing frame, and he eventually outgrew it.

 This year at school Nick has started to use a stander again while doing his speech therapy work. This one has wheels on the bottom so that Nick and the frame can move around (it is different from a mobile stander which has big wheelchair wheels so he can move himself while standing up).

This stander was bought for Nick for school and is designated for him. So when he starts at his home school in September, this stander will go with him.

So it is great for doing school work. When we were asked if we wanted to borrow any equipment for the summer from his school equipment we asked if we could take home the stander.

While we don't want to have any big and bulky equipment in the house that we don't need... After our appointment with our new physiotherapist and talking about how need for more bracing, I think this is valuable and we want to use it daily.

Nick likes it and asks to go in his stander "just like at school". When he knees start to hurt him, after about an hour, then he comes out. (I am really, really hoping that the new KAFO's will help with his knee pain).

We have some work books for the kids to work on through the summer.
Last summer we were concentrating so much on his upcoming surgery and recovery that we didn't do anything related to school and his teacher mentioned that he lost some of his knowledge through the summer.
So while Nick is still very excited about learning and school and using his standing frame, we are going with it!

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Steve and the Zoo

Nick had an eye test at Bloorview (on a Saturday) so we decided that we would treat the kids to a trip to the zoo on our way home. As a surprise!
For a bigger surprise I found out that there was going to be a special guest at the zoo for a meet-and-greet!
Captain America! (Who is Nick's favorite Avenger)
He told Nick that he could call him "Steve", so all day Nick talked about how he got to meet Steve.

We each got to pick and animal to go and visit.
Katheryn picked the polar bears. Always her favorite

And we were there for feeding time

Nick picked the otter. We named her Marlene (just like in Penguins of Madagascar). She is so active that the kids loved watching her swim all around. We got to see her fed as well, and waited 10 extra minutes for the zoo keeper. Who threw in some food and when someone asked her a question she answered and then walked away.

My choice was the flamingos. I thought the kids would get a kick out of them, and we hadn't visited them for a while. They were in a part of the zoo we usually skip.
I though they provided a nice background for a picture

Kyle picked the penguins. We just missed seeing them fed

It was so hot and sunny that we stopped for a quick popsicle break and then headed out

They each wanted to ride the merry-go-round.
Nick didn't want to go onto anything, so  we used the wheelchair turtle. So he could take his wheelchair up a ramp and then get attached to the ride and go around.

Katheryn picked a flamingo

On our way out we saw Steve again
It was a fun surprise for the kids!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Happy Canada Day

Here are some pictures celebrating our countries birthday
Canada Day!

Some quiet time at the cottage

Some funny faces

A big smile

A family picture

And finally, Katheryn wasn't very happy I wanted just one more picture

We ended off the night watching fireworks and singing O'Canada! (but no more pictures)

Saturday, June 27, 2015


To finish out our June of fundraising we set up a raffle at a family event

The SB&H donated to me some prizes and I was trying to figure out how to raise the most amount of money over the month and decided on our family party.

I had all of my pamphlets ready to share and armed Nick with them

And Maddie, my super-selling niece was in charge of the raffle tickets!

She went around to everyone at the party and sold all of the tickets!
I am definitely getting her help for all of my fundraising!

Thanks to these 2 we raised $255!

So Our total for this year is $845 for Nick's Cheering Squad!