Sorry you have to go to the video-it wouldn't post here.
I thought I'd do an update on each kid since I was able to update the good news on Selah.
So Sarah turned 10 years old while we were on our Christmas cruise. She loved the cruise and loved being in our room and not with the boys LOL.
Sarah is taking some steps on her own, her therapist is really happy with her progress. Sarah tends to make strides then STOP for awhile. Right now she is moving forward in all areas.
Sarah has always had to eat pureed food. There is absolutely nothing wrong with her where she couldn't eat regular food but she was never taught how to eat normally as it was easier for her caregivers just to give her baby food. When we were in the process of adopting her, the caregiver showed me how Sarah was fed. It was almost like torture. She was given huge spoons of mush until she gagged and then they would say she was full. It was so upsetting to me to watch them cram mush into her mouth. So obviously she has issues.
When she first came home she could only eat a small jar of baby food without gagging. As she learned that we would feed her at HER pace, she began to eat more and more. We began giving her whatever we were eating and would puree it. After almost 5 years I"m on my second machine. I love my Ninja blender! Now she is to the point she can handle a few foods not pureed! And even the ones we puree we make it a thicker paste. She LOVES to eat! I do alot of crock pot meals and those usually are perfect to blend up. For several years I had to really do mostly soups as she had to have the food thinner but not anymore! The great thing is she moves her food around and actually chews! She's been chewing for at least a year but it wasn't consistent but it is now. I puree almost everything we eat unless it just wouldn't work like pizza or sandwiches. I keep some soups on hand but she mainly eats "real food" now.
She clearly says Mama and her new word is Dada! She loves her Dada. As with many non verbal kids, her receptive language- the language she understands is far more than what she can express. She knows what to expect if i ask her if she wants to eat. She'll crawl over to the dining table and get in her seat. If we say it's bedtime she understands and walks (by holding our hand) to her room When she gets in her bed, she lifts her hand up to hold our's and wants to pray. We'll say AMEN and put her hand down and she'll put that little hand back up again to pray some more (or to keep us in her room) Monthly we see and increase in her babbling. The first year she was home she made no sound except for a little laugh. She has come so far.
She plays with her toys. Until the last 3-6 months she really had no interest in toys. She has always been so very tactile defensive. Most blind kids are but she was to the highest degree. But that is changing. she has a box of toys in the living room that she will actually get into and pull the toys out and hold them. Just holding them is great and a step for her. But now she will make noise with them (she has a couple of toys she shakes) she has learned how to take the rings off of her stacking toys and she has a couple of stuffed toys she will hold. It's so sweet to see her with her toys around her!
she fell asleep playing!