28 February 2011

I Heart Faces: Anything But A Face!

I am (hopefully) getting back in the groove of entering these photo challenges on I Heart Faces.  The baby will keep my inspiration up!

My husband and I are expecting our first baby this summer...and are so excited.  Thought a butt shot with this super cute duck onesie would fit the theme perfect, while still capturing our excitement to become a mommy and daddy!



27 February 2011

Hope for Abigail

Ben and I have been so blessed to get to know Miss Abigail Mann (and her wonderful parents.)  She is one of the funniest little girls I have ever met.  She usually chooses water over most other drinks, she "asks" to go to bed when she is tired, and one of her favorite activities is ballet.  

                                          (Photo by Lauren VanderHorst.)
Abigail is two years old and has a genetic disorder called neurofibromatosis.  (Please read her momma's description of the disorder at http://munciemenn.blogspot.com/, where you can also read their story.)  It is the most common neurological disorder caused by a single gene, affecting more people than cystic fibrosis, duchenne muscular dystrophy, and Huntington's disease combined!  Yet most people have never heard of it.   

From Abigail's momma's blog: "In short NF causes a person's body to grow benign (mostly) tumors unchecked on nerves.  So anywhere your body has nerves (internal, external, brain, spinal cord, etc.) a tumor could grow.  It also is considered progressive (not necessarily fatal) and therefore even a mild case today could be a severe case a year from now.  Complications that can occur in NF: disfigurement, scoliosis, learning disabilities, large heads (macrocephaly), optic gliomas, congenital bone defects, and high blood pressure (this is nowhere near exhaustive)."

Abigail does indeed have a tumor growing on her right thigh.  Her parents have made the decision to have it removed by one of the best tumor removal surgeons in the country.  Unfortunately, her insurance considers the surgery elective and will not cover it.  Read why they are going this route on their blog.  
Or simply read this quote, "I can elect to allow my daughter's tumor to grow so much that she will lose use of her right leg and become morbidly deformed, or I can elect to have it removed early and increase her quality of life as well as give her the opportunity to continue doing things she loves; like dancing!"

Abigail needs your help to pay for her surgery.  I encourage you to visit her fund raising site and donate at least $10, not much to give a little girl a chance to keep dancing.  Or donate more!  (It is tax season, would you consider donating 5-10% of your return to help pay for her surgery?)

Another way you can easily donate is through buying a Hope for Abigail ring from Jill Raye Designs...so cute!

Thanks for reading! 

Week 22

They are a little hard to read so I posted the text beneath.

"Draw a crazy picture,
Write a nutty poem,
Sing a mumble-gumble song,
Whistle through your comb.
Do a loony-goony dance
'Cross the kitchen floor,
Put something silly in the world
That ain't been there before."
— Shel Silverstein
 Looking forward to all the joy, smiles, and laughter that you will bring into this world.---Mommy

Hello little fetus, part of me is petrified of your arrival mostly because I have no idea how to take care of you.  But most of the time, I just want you here now because I absolutely cannot wait to meet you.  All your tiny little fingers and toes, your wide eyes and snotty nose, I will love and adore every single one.  I think I felt you kick the other day, but it was pretty weak, so we'll have to get you on an exercise regimen if you're going to try out for the baby olympics.  I already love you more than I thought possible.  See you soon! (From Daddy.)

And a belly pic :)

Number One Checked Off...Self Portraits!

1.                Take a self portrait session of us as a couple.
 
Ben took the three below of me :)
Taking self portraits is soooo difficult.  This is how it made us feel.