Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Sunrise Smiles - Week of Apr. 18th

"A flower blossoms for its own joy." ~Oscar Wilde

The sunrise can be seen most mornings Cam and his mom make their way down the driveway to wait for the bus.  Monday's looked pretty cool and Jane's son actually asked her to snap a picture.

Monday after school, Cam said he didn't feel right and had a tough time finishing homework.  We canceled his swimming and PT lessons for that eve.  By the next morning, he had a full blown cold complete with stuffy/runny nose, watery eyes and the occasional cough.  

We were beyond fortunate that Oma and Opa were with us until Wednesday so Chris and Jane continued forward with their daily jobs.  Cam was able to hang out with his grandparents in between nose blows.  He ate chicken noodle soup and had daily doses of honey to ward off the cough.  On Wednesday, he insisted on a covid test which was negative.  His spirits were rising and we snapped a pic with Oma and Opa before they left.  Cam stayed home on Thursday just be certain he was well enough to return to school on Friday, which he did.

After a long week at home, Ms. Ann came over Friday afternoon to spend the evening with her buddy while Cam's parents headed out for dinner.  Saturday was a beautiful day to be outside and start on the ever popular yard work.  That evening, Cam recommended we go out to breakfast on Sunday to one of our favorite local spots, Sundance.

It was a bit windy and not super warm, but we all agreed to sit outside.  It was our first outdoor dining experience of 2022.  As we awaited our delicious meal, Cam exclaimed, "Wasn't this a good idea I had?"  Jane responded with "Well, I guess you'd better pat yourself on the back, then!"  To which Cam immediately complied and did, in fact, pat himself on his own back. 😁  

Camology Quotes:

We returned to Mary Free Bed on Friday afternoon to pick up Cam's new custom seat, designed to help him sit up more in his power chair and add comfort.  We met a new OT, Ms. Mary, as we were almost finished.  She talked about some new ideas we could implement and kept apologizing for disrupting as we were getting ready to leave.  We all agreed we wanted to hear her input and although it will mean another appointment, we are always thankful for professionals who advocate.  When we were driving back home, Cam offered his own opinion.

"I think Ms. Mary had a different perspective.  I wanted to say to her, if you have an idea Ms. Mary, let it out!"

Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Back to Business - Week of Apr. 11th

" 'Twas Easter Sunday.  The full-blossomed trees filled all the air with fragrance and with joy." ~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

"Let everything you do be done in love." ~1 Corinthians 16:14

When there's a break in the action in the daily activity of life, it can be satisfying to fall back into the typical routine.  Although early Monday morning produced quite a few yawns at our 6am wake up, there were also lots of smiles.

Cam was happy to be back at school after spring break and celebrated a friend's birthday.  His swimming lesson was canceled on Monday, but he still had PT.  The pool he uses had a chemical reaction issue and it had to be drained.  Cam had numerous questions about this and his instructor, Ms. Mandy, was happy to explain it all to the attentive listener.

Mid-week, we headed a few neighborhoods over to pick up dining room chairs someone else was parting with.  Ours were nearly 20 years old.  We took two vehicles to be certain we could transport all 6 of them.  Cam told the homeowner that their house looked like "The Incredibles" home from the animated movie.  When we looked up a picture of it, he was actually spot on!

Saturday morning, father and son were busy making monster cookies.  After lunch, we loaded up our treats and headed for Zeeland.  Our new friend, Erica, was testing out a rugged power chair that can be used on trails and the beach.  Her mom told Chris we could try it out.  It was a blustery, chilly day but Cam still took a whirl outside.  The garage was a bit warmer so he drove around in there as we asked questions.  This type of powered wheelchair is meant for the beach and hiking. Cam said it was very comfortable and he felt safe in it.

As an added bonus, there was an outdoor cat in the garage who had kittens just 3 days prior.  They brought one over to Cam to see up close.  It was the littlest kitty he had ever held!

We were thankful for our visit and the knowledge gained.  We didn't get to see our friend Erica on this trip.  Now begins the task of determining what grants are available for the ultimate off-roading vehicle for Cam.

Sunday, we welcomed Oma and Opa to celebrate Easter with us.  They arrived bearing gifts- an Easter lily, chocolate treats and a very cool wind turbine for Cam and his dad to put together.  Since Cam's grandparents arrived at lunchtime, they also brought their delicious homemade sausage egg casserole.  With fresh fruit, it made for a perfect brunch.  

As we relaxed that afternoon and enjoyed a traditional ham dinner, we forgot about snapping a family pic.  

However, Oma keenly observed an outdoor visitor watching our activities, or possibly just looking for its own dinner.

Camology Quotes:

Friday afternoon, we picked up Cam early from school for an appointment at Mary Free Bed.  The 1pm start time was scheduled to last at least 2 hours for Cam to be fitted with a new custom seat on his powerchair.  Since we knew we'd be there awhile, Jane offered to walk to the Biggby Coffee shop, located at the other side of the building, to grab drinks for everyone.  Cam asked for a mocha caramel Frappuccino and Chris said he would copy his son.  Jane arrived back in the room and promptly had Cam try the drink.  He took a long sip, stopped, and looked at his mom while asking, 

"Mom, this has coffee in it!  Didn't you order me one with no coffee?"

Jane admitted her accidental mistake and they all had a good laugh. Chris graciously offered to walk back and order the "correct" drink.  In the meantime, Cam felt it necessary to tell this story each and every time someone walked into the room.  It did make the time go by more quickly and we certainly continued to have a good laugh each and every time!

Sunday, April 10, 2022

A Break in Spring? - Week of Apr. 4th

“Spring, an experience in immortality.” ~Henry D. Thoreau
"April hath put a spirit of youth in everything." ~William Shakespeare 

Cam settled into his spring break week but the weather wasn't exactly "spring-like."  That didn't deter any fun planned for the time off, though.  

Ms. Ann continued tutoring Cam, working on spelling, reading and math.  Oma and Opa arrived on Tuesday to spend 4 nights with us.  Cam made up daily stories with Ms. Ann that he then read to his family each evening. 

Oma and her grandson love baking and they completed a delicious batch of homemade applesauce as well as Energy Bites.  The Bites are made with just 5 ingredients: oats, honey, peanut butter, mini chocolate chips and vanilla extract.  On Friday evening, we secured take out from JT's partaking in scrumptious fish and chips, one of Cam's newer favorites.  After an early dinner, we all gathered in the living room to watch the West Side Story movie.  Even though it was a long movie, we all gave it a thumbs up!

Saturday morning, we said goodbye to Cam's grandparents and thanked them for all of their time and help.  Right after they left, Chris & Jane and son made their way to a place they'd never been to. With an appointment to have the van's windshield replaced, we came upon the fact that a restaurant was located right next to the windshield replacement place.  

Sine Ms. Ann had been aware of our plans, she told us that this restaurant actually had the highest online ratings for Byron Center. And much to our collective surprise, it was the 76th Street Truck Stop Diner.  It is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Due to its popularity, the diner was quite crowded when we arrived and met Ms. Ann.  We were seated quickly and given lots of attention.  Even though it was almost lunchtime, we all ordered breakfast and no one was disappointed!  Cam had two blueberry pancakes the size of his plate and declared them the best ever.  We all agreed it would be a good idea to return next month and try out the lunch menu.

Saturday evening, we found a family movie to watch, quite by accident.  Jane was reading an article about top movies to see as a fam and The Mitchells vs. the Machines was one of them listed.  The movie was released in 2021, is an animated film and filled with humor for all ages.  

Each of us laughed out loud and we were happy we took a chance and watched something none of us had even heard of.

Camology Quotes:

Chris loves to joke around with his son and his son believes he is the funniest human on earth.  The best part is- they truly never tire of the puns and pranks. Almost daily, Cam's dad (as he was leaving for work) would tell Cam to have fun at school at which point, Cam would remind Chris he was on spring break.  One evening upon arriving home, Chris asked Cam how his day at school was and without missing a beat, Cam replied:

"Don't ask me today, Dad, ask me next week!"

Sunday, April 3, 2022

Phase 1 Construction ✅ - Week of Mar. 28th

"I think I have the coolest room in the house now." ~Cameron J. Weatherford

When a project is ongoing, it's gratifying to see stages completed.  We always say Cam is a trooper and he's proven that once again while living in a semi-construction zone.  He doesn't complain and continues to be appreciative of the efforts.

Little things can make all the difference...Cam's dad arriving home with a beautiful bouquet and outfitting his son's chair for "Neon Day" at school.

With only three days at the middle school this week prior to break, each day was designated for school camaraderie. Monday- Pajama Day, Tuesday- Neon Day and Wednesday- Beach Day.  Cam doesn't really have any super bright clothing so Chris ordered battery-operated lights for his power chair.  Tuesday morning, his bus driver Ms. Christy told him he "looked like a spaceship or a hovercraft as you were driving down your driveway!"

On Friday, Cam had his booster shot and Saturday was spent indoors on the couch since he didn't quite feel like himself.  Previously, we had planned to attend a Robotics competition at Kentwood high school.  We were relieved the event could be seen online so we could still catch the action.

Sunday morning, Cam declared he felt just fine again and asked if we could go out for a family breakfast.  His parents let him choose the location and he picked IHop.  We couldn't remember the last time we had been there.  It was a delicious breakfast and we decided we would try to go out for a morning meal at least one time every month.

With our Phase 1 of construction completed thanks to Mr. Brandon at Lakeshore Barrier Free, we were able to put Cam's room back together with pictures up on the walls and his WMML medals displayed.  Now, we wait until the ceiling track arrives and that installation will take place next.
In the meantime, Cam has been enjoying his new expansive space and Jane, who works from home, is most thankful that this first round of construction came to an end. 😉

Camology Quotes:

Chris and his son love to play pranks.  On April 1st, we said Good Morning to the Amazon Alexa as per the normal routine.  After providing the weather forecast and daily information, Alexa indicated that a new feature had been added called "what's that smell?" using new smell technology.  Alexa asked us to imagine bacon cooking and then did a countdown 3..2..1 and we heard a whoosh sound.  Alexa said "did you smell it?" We all said "No!" Alexa continued with 2 more smell technologies, both of which we indicated we did not smell.  After a short pause, we then heard Alexa say...

"April Fools!"