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The Harvey Girls

Updated: 2018-03-22T08:02:37.219-04:00




My first time kayaking.  It wasn't as difficult as I thought it would be although we were on a very small, calm lake.  Olivia had been before so she gave me pointers.  We are enjoying time together before her and Alaina start school again on the 27th.  

Fairy House


Olivia made this clay fairy house at our town art center.  It turned out so cute!  

Alaina Climbing


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Olivia and her friend Kate went camping in the backyard.  Olivia loved it so much she said she wanted to keep sleeping there the rest of the week. Unfortunately to cold for that.  I love that she enjoys it so much as camping with my mom and grandparents was one of the highlights of my childhood.

Happy 6th Birthday Alaina!


 We love you so much and we are so proud of you.  You rocked kindergarten and I hope that you continue to excel in everything that your heart desires.  

School Rodeo


Olivia Skating


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Corinne Skating


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Corinne's Skating Lesson


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Tea Party




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Corinne on the Snowy Trampoline


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Goodbye Tonsils


Post Op- Day 1         Goodbye tonsils and adenoids!  Alaina had a tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy yesterday and I thought I would share some facts about why we and her doctor chose to have this procedure done.           Clinical research shows that when kids with Down syndrome undergo a sleep study (gold standard for diagnosing sleep apnea) at least 50% of them show signs of sleep apnea, typically obstructive sleep apnea.  This was the case for Alaina, she underwent a sleep study about a year ago which did show mild sleep apnea.  This was characterized by multiple events of decreased or no airflow for greater than 10 seconds.  Thankfully, she was maintaining good oxygen levels during these events.  Another characteristic of OSA is that the chest wall will continue to move as though the person is breathing even though there is no airflow.          The first line of treatment for sleep apnea in kids with DS is to have the tonsils removed because they are likely contributing to some of the obstruction.  The obstruction is believed to be caused by enlarged tonsils combined with small airways and low muscle tone of the airway.  If tonsil and adenoid removal doesn't completely remedy the situation the next treatment is CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure), although this is most commonly needed in adults as opposed to pediatric populations.         Another reason I was interested in having a T&A removal is because removal of the adenoids can be a solution to chronic sinusitis which Alaina is prone to.  She gets bacterial sinus infections that will improve with antibiotic therapy just to re-occur as soon as she is off of them.  As most of us know antibiotics should never be a long term solution so I've been looking at a more effective way to manage her sinusitis.      As far as Alaina's stay went she did great!  Her ENT doctor is fairly cautious with treatment and therefore recommended an overnight stay to monitor oxygen levels while she slept.  She did fine and we were home the next morning.  I was surprised to find out that her post-op pain would be managed with Tylenol as I had heard this can be a painful recovery.  So far she doesn't appear to be in much pain and I'm continuing to medicate on a schedule for prevention of pain as this can cause dehydration due to refusal to drink and eat.       I want to share my thoughts regarding an overnight conversation I had with one of the hospital doctors.  He came to assess Alaina and shared with me that his little sister had DS.  He did say that his sister was doing well, but gave a comment that most DS moms are familiar with "mild facial features" in regards to Alaina.  In my opinion Alaina very obviously has DS, in addition to her multiple surgeries due to defects related to DS.  I think sometimes medical professionals think this is the correct communication with parents to make them feel better, but what made me feel the best was that I could feel the love he had for his sister by communicating with me.        I shared with him that I'm so grateful for the amazing advancement in medical treatment for people with Down syndrome such as the T&A removal for sleep apnea.  We know through medical research the terrible effects of sleep apnea on the general population such as reduced cognition, as well as lung and heart damage.  The average lifespan of people with DS has increased from 25 y/o in 1983 ,[...]

Christmas Hokey Pokey


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Happy Thanksgiving!


Happy Thanksgiving to all our friends and family we can't be with today!  I have been so busy with school that I haven't been able to upload photos to the blog, but I'm hoping to catch up soon.  We are all doing well and very thankful for a great year.  We went to visit family in Oregon and Colorado in July and visited with Grandpa Hopkins at the beach in October.  My girls are blessed to have such wonderful family in their lives.  

End of Summer Pics



Corinne's 1st Day


Girls are all in school as of today!  Corinne has moved up to Alaina's old class "Chipmunks". There will be more learning this year, letters, writing, etc.  She will have the same teachers Alaina had last year, Ms. Bri and Ms. Amanda.  I think this is going to be a great year for Corinne.  She loves making friends at school and she is super excited to check out the dress up selection in the Chipmunk room!

1st Day of Kindergarten


   Alaina made it to her first day of kindergarten!  She has been so excited to ride the bus and I'm so glad we made the choice to let her.  A little girl from our bus stop who is also a kindergartener sat with Alaina so I felt good that she had a friend with her to ride to school.  I had wanted her to sit in the very front but once she got on the bus she wanted to sit in the back.  Olivia had to stop her and put her in this seat about three rows back.  They can't sit together because kindergarteners are supposed to sit in the front and older kids in the back.  I'm ok with that though because then Alaina gets to sit with kids her own age and she can make friends. 

   After the bus left Corinne and I drove to the school so we could see Alaina's new classroom.  Her teacher is brand new to the school this year, but the teacher assistant has been at the school since it opened and everyone loves her.  I really hope Alaina has a good year and that this class is a good fit for her.  She is going to a separate kindergarten for kids with learning disabilities or delays.  I think she is better there for the start of the year because Alaina doesn't have a lot of functional speech yet, although she's made a lot of improvements over the past year with her fabulous speech therapist.  She may spend time in the regular kindergarten at some point during the year if everyone thinks that would benefit her.

    I'm sure going to be anxious waiting for Alaina to come off the bus this afternoon!  I hope she has a great day!


1st Day of 3rd Grade




Because she wants everyone to see her pretty braids...

Ridin' in Style


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Last Day of Preschool


Today is the last day of preschool for Alaina and Corinne.  Corinne will be back next year, but this is the official end for Alaina because she is off to kindergarten at the end of July.  They have grown so much over the past year!

Girl Scouts-Outdoor Skills


   I spent the weekend at Outdoor Skills training camp with my Girl Scout co-leader so that we can begin taking our Brownies on camping trips.  It was so much fun!!!  

I started my own fire...
And sat around the campfire roasting smores...I'm on the far right...

    We learned all kinds of awesome stuff like how to cook with a Dutch oven over a fire and even how to make a box oven which is a thick cardboard box wrapped in duct tape.  You put a tray of coals in the bottom and it will maintain heat just like a regular oven.

   Next weekend is our family camping trip with all our Brownies and their families to end our first year together.
It will be our first time camping with my girls so it should be busy, but a great time for all.

I'll come back with pictures!