Friday, July 04, 2014

End of the Year

The end of the year came upon us quite quickly. Gus had such a wonderful experience at Lake Windward this last year and we really went into it uncertain, but came away feeling so happy that we trusted our guts to do the best for him. We have seen so much growth in his speech, it's remarkable.

When we had his fall IEP (in October because he had met all the goals set in May of 2013), I asked his speech therapist about how far behind he was. She said he was about a year and a half to two years delayed. When we had his May IEP, she said he was about six months behind his peers. Talk about growth!!

We were able to add OT to his IEP. His teacher spent the whole year trying different interventions (as is how things are done now days in the education world) and collected and plotted data and then tried more interventions and more data collection... and finally, after trying so many and not seeing the results that she felt were warranted, we were finally able to add OT for the fall. :-)  This should help him with being so squirmy, strengthening his core muscles, and teaching him strategies for staying focused.

Gus had his first field trip and Steve and Hugh and I were able to attend. We walked over to Webb Bridge Park (just around the corner from his school). It was a great trip!

Gus and Cameron, Nikki, and James walking into the school ready for their 1st ever field trip!

Gus and James

Meera and Hugh

Gus had a blast with his two 5th grade friends (they're helpers in the special needs preschool classes)

Steve pulling Hewy in the wagon :-)

Gus holding Ms. Amanda's hand as they walked back to the school

Gus also got to participate in his first ever Field Day!! I wasn't there to help, but his teacher sent some pictures of Gus during field day:

That's a happy boy right there

For the end of the year, his teacher had a party (the day before the last day) and I was able to go to that. The last day of school was sad for me. Gus wasn't aware of what it all meant, but I was. Throughout the summer, as we've been by his old school, he's asked to go see Ms. Amanda and all his friends. It breaks my heart to know that he'll never go back and will never see them all again as his classmates. 

Gus and Ms. Amanda

Gus on the last day of school

We will miss our friends at Lake Windward Elementary, but are eager to see what being a Medlock Bridge Mustang will like! I'll be going on Tuesday to register Gus as an official mustang... and the beginning of a new chapter will start on August 11th!

4th Birthday!

Gus's cupcake cake

For Gus's fourth birthday, we decided to do a bowling theme. I had taken him bowling a few months before and he really enjoyed it, so I decided to look into how much it'd be for a party. Turns out, it was pretty affordable and I was hooked!

I created his invitations myself, and I think they turned out really cute.

We invited ten of his closest friends, and decided on cosmic bowling on Saturday, May 10th. I had thought of doing it on his actual birthday (Sunday), but it was Mother's Day, so we opted for Saturday instead.

We've decided to do a birthday shirt each year, and I love the one I got for Gus for his 3rd and then I got Hugh the same one for his 1st. Each year, when Gus has his birthday, we'll get his, and then when Hugh has his birthday, he'll get the matching shirt. I plan to eventually have a quilt made for each boy once they're older, and use those birthday shirts in the quilts.

Anyway, Gus was able to wear his new shirt for his bowling party. We were excited to have Steve's dad and Sue Ann come down for Gus's birthday. They came on Thursday and stayed until Sunday morning. It was such a great help for them to come, and they were able to keep Hugh occupied while we focused on Gus and his party.

This is the set-up

Gus and his BFF, Meera

Gus and his buddy Garner

Hugh and his grandpa

The fog machine kicked on and then the lights went out and it was a party!

Gus got a REAL bowling pin as a keepsake and each child autographed it for him

Hugh and his buddy Grey

Cameron and James with their mom, Nikki (they were in Gus's class this last year)

Gus's good friend Gage

Of course, Miss Aubree was there to celebrate with us :-)

After the kids bowled for an hour and a half, we headed to the arcade. Each child was given a MEGA coin to put into the token machine, and then it spit out $3 in tokens. It was so awesome. The kids had a blast in the arcade!!

Putting his MEGA coin into the machine

We learned that Gus needs some practice with driving- thankfully we have 11 years before that's an issue

Gus and Gage playing air hockey

The party was wonderful. Everyone had drinks, pizza, cupcakes, and the kids each left with a big bowling pin-shaped sipper with a straw. It was a lot of fun and we enjoyed being able to watch Gus have fun with his friends.

We got home and decided to open his birthday presents while Grandpa and Nana were still with us. Gus was overwhelmed with all the nice things that his friends gave him for his birthday.

Aubree gave him a hand-made Lego box!! It came with Legos inside!!

Logan gave Gus a special Pluto from Wilderness Lodge-- he got it while in WDW just the week before!

We gave Gus a Buzz Lightyear

It was a fun birthday and we had a great time celebrating four amazing years. It makes me sad to think he's already four, but he's an amazing little boy and I cherish each day with him!!