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God only gives special children to special people…

God only gives special children to special people…

Have you ever heard this phrase before?  — “God only gives special children to special people.”  I have.  Too many times, actually.  That seemed to be a “go to” response when we broke the news of Everett’s diagnosis to friends and family after he was…

5 Things All New Parents of a Baby with Down syndrome Should Know

5 Things All New Parents of a Baby with Down syndrome Should Know

5 Things All New Parents of a Baby with Down syndrome Should Know — Mainly, It’s Going to Be Okay! I recall a lot…I mean a lot…of irrational fears that I experienced in those crucial moments right after Everett was born and diagnosed.  No mother deserves…

Resources for New Parents of Children with Down syndrome

Resources for New Parents of Children with Down syndrome

Like many parents, as I walk through this journey of parenthood, I turn to a few sources when I have questions. Most of the time, the question dictates the source. For instance, if I have a question like, “How do I get my kids to sleep through the night?” – I turn to my mother first. She’s a kid/baby whisperer. But if it’s a question about something more technical, like AAI (atlantoaxial instability and Down syndrome), I turn to the interwebs. The interwebs has a lot to offer any parent, but there are quite a few useful resources for us parents of kiddos with DS! Here is a list of some of my faves. I’ve organized each resource by national resources, parent groups, local (North Texas) resources, and blogs. I can assure you that this blog post merely touches the tip of the iceberg, in that there are many, many other resources related to Down syndrome (aren’t we lucky to have so much info and potential connections at our fingertips?!?!). The ones listed below are just a few of my personal favorites, and the local resources are a great read for families in the DFW area. Feel free to mention some of your favorites in the comments section below, I would love to keep this list updated on a rolling basis!

A cute photo of newborn Everett laying on his changing pad with his stuffed puppy.

Continue reading Resources for New Parents of Children with Down syndrome

Thyroid Ragin’

Thyroid Ragin’

Thyroid Ragin’ or Threenager syndrome? It all began early last summer, right as Everett turned 3-years-old.  Everett was making huge strides in his preschool class at end of term.  He was trying to run & jump, was saying a few words, and was very engaged…

Mom Hack Monday Debut!

Mom Hack Monday Debut!

Mom Hack Monday Debut! Featuring the lovely and talented Jen Jacob I’d like to take a moment to introduce you to my friend, Jen Jacob, who has graciously offered to contribute the first Mom Hack Monday entry on Mamability.com!  But of course, as usual, a…

Ode to Kinderfrogs

Ode to Kinderfrogs

Some context…the Kinderfrogs KTPA Fundraiser – 2016

I have a little bit of a crush.  Actually, it’s a bit more than just a crush.  Back in the summer of 2013, I fell in love.  I was head over heels for a little newborn baby named Everett Michael, but as a new mama with a new baby, with a new diagnosis, I was very worried about his future.  And then, I fell in love again.  But this time I fell in love with a huge group of people – the Kinderfrogs community.  At first, I fell in love with the director (in case you didn’t know, Marilyn, lol!).  Then I fell in love with the faculty and staff. And shortly after that, I fell in love with every kid enrolled at Kinderfrogs and their families.  I guess it’s safe to say, by virtue of the introductory language in this blog post, that I have a deep and unyielding love for my child’s preschool and everyone involved in shaping that preschool into what it is today.  In fact, this love is so pure that when asked to give a speech about “What Kinderfrogs Means to Me” last spring….I gushed.  So, since my second-born began his first day in the Toddler class today (Everett is now in the Pre-K class…he big boy), I feel compelled to profess my unending and undying love for Kinderfrogs in today’s blog post.  The following is the speech I delivered last year at the KTPA Fundraiser (2016), where parents, faculty, and staff hosted an annual event that raised monies for Kinderfrogs!  A great deal of the money we raised provided instructional resources and scholarships for our kiddos with DS. So, there is a “call to action” at the end of this speech/blog entry.  If you are so inclined to give, I’ve included a link at the end.  And if you are interested in this year’s fundrasier, the above graphic is our 2017 save-the-date! Continue reading Ode to Kinderfrogs

Last-Minute-Mom Debut!

Last-Minute-Mom Debut!

Introducing — Our First Last-Minute-Mom So I thought it might take a while to round up some content from my fellow mamas….but nope!  Today’s post features our first fearless last-minute-mom, Amy Matasso!  Amy’s got her hands full these days with three littles, Josh (5), Andrew…

FriendAbility:  A Tale of Two Down syndrome Diagnoses

FriendAbility: A Tale of Two Down syndrome Diagnoses

Got a little story for ya Ags! And if you’re not an Ag, I’ve still got a little story for ya. Once upon a time a young 18-year-old named Cara, embarked on one of the greatest adventures of her life – college. Young Cara spent…

Sneak Preview of TEDxACU

Sneak Preview of TEDxACU

Welcome Back Wildcat! — A TEDxACU Talk Brings me Back to ACU

I am so excited to announce that this year, 3 days after World Down syndrome Day, I have been invited to give a TEDxACU presentation at Abilene Christian University!  When it comes to campus affiliations, I might have a little bit of an identity crisis.  I’m a fightin’ Texas Aggie (twice baked, class of ’01 and ’14 from the Department of Comm) and a Southern Methodist University Mustang (I’m currently on faculty in the Department of Corporate Communication and Public Affairs), and I’m part ACU Wildcat! I graduated with my MA in Communication from ACU back in December of 2003. Arguably, ACU gave me my wings.  I was NOT a seasoned speaker, teacher, or scholar when I entered the program as a graduate assistant in 2002.  But when I earned my hood and diploma….I began to soar, thanks to the mentorship, friendship, and instruction I received from the incredible faculty and staff in the Department of Comm!  I can’t wait to return to my alma mater and see the campus once again.  It’s been more than 10 years since I’ve been to Wildcat country and for those of you who have never visited the Abilene area, there is one thing you shouldn’t miss if you do — the food! Seriously, if you’re into BBQ, steak, and good old fashioned home-cookin’ (Texas style), you can’t beat the selection in Abilene, TX. Perini Ranch, Bee Hive, Hickory Street Cafe, Homeplace, Harold’s Pit BBQ (tragically, now closed), and Jo Allen’s, are just a few of my old haunts.  Aside from food, however (lol!), I am also thrilled to be speaking about something else that I hold very near and dear to my heart — “next” conversations about Down syndrome.  I think WDSD 2017 might be a low key event around our house this year, because mama’s gonna be preppin’ for a big talk (and some big eatin’)!  And I may have to pack up the fam and take them with me.  The boys need a true ACU/Abilene experience.  I may cry a little on the inside when Everett chooses a PB&J over a nice kids entree at Perini Ranch though.  Food aside, here’s a little sneak preview of what the TEDxACU talk will be about. Continue reading Sneak Preview of TEDxACU

Confessions of a Rockin mom #30:  Fears related to Down syndrome & holidays

Confessions of a Rockin mom #30: Fears related to Down syndrome & holidays

This is my final confession of the series (and Down syndrome Awareness Month -2016) and for obvious reasons, it will address Halloween! For Everett’s very first Halloween we dressed him up as a baby skeleton and I bought Vic & I matching skeleton tees (the…