Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas 2012

We had a nice Christmas.  We went over to Dear Son's paternal Grandma's for Christmas.  She had the entire immediate family there including all of the grandkids and great grandkids. Grandma is 91 now, and reminds us of that every day. 

She ordered some pies from Baker's Square and then forgot which location she ordered them from so they had to call to verify the location prior to picking them up, lol.

She's had it at her house for so many years although she has it catered now instead of cooking everything.  There are other family members that bring the turkey and a ton of desserts. Dear Son's Aunt is an amazing baker and makes a ton of different cookies and other Christmas treats that are not only delicious but beautiful.

The great grandkids where there too.  One of the them got a new hat and she was glad to model it for me and put her hands up so I could take the picture. She is a real cutie.  She ran up and threw her arms around her Great Grandma the minute she came into the house.  She got a huge pink dollhouse for Christmas that had an elevator.  When I asked her what her favorite gift was, she said "a Barbie".  I hope Santa didn't hear that after bringing that huge dollhouse.

Dear Son got a new winter hat from his Dad.  I just loved how his face lit up when his Dad was opening up the present for him. I quickly grabbed my phone to take some pictures.  Dear Son has never been able to open any presents since his hands don't work and he can't grab anything. When he was a baby, I used to wrap everything then unwrap it all to open it. I got smarter as the years went on and switched to gift bags to save myself some time.  Dear Son got some new pants, new pj/lounging pants, new hat, shirts, carousel and money. I didn't decorate our apartment for Christmas this year.  I had stored our Christmas decorations at Dad's and he forgot to bring them over and then it got too late. I decided that since we'll be moving in a few months that I'd skip the decorations this year.  One thing that was really cute though, was that Dear Son was awake nearly the whole night pror to Christmas Day in anticipation of Santa.  He was so excited to open presents.

In other news, December 20th marked the one year anniversary of Dear Son's real food blenderized diet. As you may recall, Dear Son eats via a feeding tube and last year I got rid of the formula and switched him over to a real food blenderized diet. He's doing great on this new diet.  We went to the doctor two weeks ago and he lost more weight. 
  • Dear Son has now lost 18.6 pounds since I changed his diet. That's great for someone who is essentially an invalid and doesn't move much.
  • His cognitive skills are much better. Both his brain and his body work so much better now.  He is now able to communicate with eye blinks in response to yes/no questions. On the Friday before vacation, he has a blast at school because the kids in his class came up to talk to him and ask him questions. He responded with eye blinks and then that kid told another one and soon they all came up to talk to him and ask him questions. Dear Son was positively glowing when his nursing aide told me all of this after school.  In twenty one years, Dear Son has never been able to do this so it's really wonderful.
  • His body works better. His dystonia (movement disorder that makes it hard to move since your body is contracted and doesn't relax) is much improved. I can lift up his arm and he no longer has any resistance. I tease him and say his arms, "move like buttah" and he smiles every time.
  • His acne improved significantly. He went from bad acne to mild and nearly clear skin.
  • He's never sick now even though kids/teachers at school get sick. Some of them got the colds/flu but not Dear Son. How cool is that? He used to be the first one sick and now that he's on a real food diet plus the Now Foods Organic Virgin Coconut Oil, he's been pneumonia free for over two years now and has not had any hospitalizations for pneumonia.
  • He looks healthy!
I am also giving myself some credit. This is a huge committment on my part. I make nearly all of his foods. In the past year, all of the bread has been homemade, all of his protein sources are organic, he gets eleven servings of fruits/vegetables a day (some organic, some regular), omega 3's and probiotics. This means that when I get tired, I can't go through a drive through or put a frozen pizza in the oven for him. I've made everything from scratch for him for one year. There were only three times in the past year that I have him formula instead of making him real food.  All of his meals take two hours to administer since he gets four cups of blended food/water per meal and he gets one cup of blended food every thirty minutes. I wouldn't trade these results for the world though. It's also really easy to put together since I use an exchange type system. It is a ton of cooking though.
One benefit of his blenderized diet was at an office visit. We went to his wheelchair check up recently after getting some new parts. The wheelchair vendor, who's fitted all Dear Son's wheelchairs since he was three, couldn't figure out what was different. When I mentioned his acne was improved, he exclaimed, "That's what different! I thought Dear Son had just come back from vacation because he looked so good!" He went on and said he was amazed at the change.
Overall, it's been a great year. But the best is when I see his happy face.  You can tell that he not only looks healthy now but he feels great.  Here is another picture of Dear Son with his new hat that he got for Christmas, posing with his Dad. I like this picture since you can see how good Dear Son looks and because you can see how much his Dad loves him.
I'd also like to thank all of my readers for your continued support and comments. It's so nice to have people interested in Dear Son.  Wishing you all some rest and happy holidays.


Sharon said...

Thanks for sharing the news from your family's Christmas. I love hearing about how your son's health has improved since you've been preparing all his food for him. I have a great-nephew who is 1 and has a disability and his mom has begun preparing all his food and has noticed he is eating much better now and beginning to gain weight. I will share your blog with her because you have learned so much about how to make the meals the most nutritious possible and seen such great results with your son. Thank you for sharing your experiences.

Dream Mom said...

Thank you Sharon. If the Mom needs any help, please have her email me at and I'd be glad to help. What we eat is important for all of us but can make a significant difference for people with disabilities.

We can also use tools that we have learned for weight loss to our advantage for kids with disabilities. For example, if you have a child with disabilities that eats slowly (due to physical issues making it hard for them to get their food to their mouth) and is underweight, you could use nutrient dense foods so there is less volume to manage but more calories.

Corinn said...

Whoa whoa whoa, HE HAS CONSISTENT COMMUNICATION??? How are you not out shouting that from the rooftops instead of posting about it so casually?!?

Seriously, that's amazing--you're amazing! So happy to read and see how well he's doing.

(Also, thanks for the coconut oil tip; turns out it's good for cats, too!)

Dream Mom said...

Thanksm Corinn. The communication skills are coming along nicely and yes, I am over the moon with all of the changes really and that one is very exciting. I am working on it and just today he told me that he was wet when I asked him from across the room. It's been an amazing experience.

Glad you liked the coconut oil. It's really amazing. The coconut oil is great for you face too. Put some in a glass dish and you can use it as a makeup remover (put it on and tissue off, then cleanse as normal, the towel dry) and once your are done cleansing, you can use it as a moisturizer. It is fantastic as a facial moisturizer and it will also get rid of fine lines due to the hyalauronic acid in it. (This is what the put in all of the $100 wrinkle creams, lol.) I get compliments on my skin all the time and I just smile to myself because I know it's the coconut oil.

Kath said...

Hi Dream Mom!

Just stopping by to see how you and Dear Son are.

Super excited to see how great he looks and thrilled with his increased communication skills.



Dream Mom said...

Thank, Kath for checking in. He's doing great. Hope everything is going well for you too.

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