Sunday, August 16, 2009


Here we are, part of the Deaf Village crew. Almost a year ago we were invited to the Chaikof's house (some VIPs in the hearing loss world). Last minute, we had to decline the invitation because Gage's infection kept getting worse, and the symptoms were unusual so we had no idea what we were dealing with at the time and I didn't feel comfortable leaving him behind to go on a road trip several hours away. When we heard that Elizabeth B. was flying in to spend a few days there, we took the opportunity to drive out of state and meet everyone.

I have to say, Elizabeth is so adorable and funny and smart. She has very ambitious goals, she's about to be back in school, she has her career well thought out and I'm sure she'll reach at least 9/10 of her goals (wink). She's really a funny gal and so polite and she and Rachel seemed like they've always been friends. You can almost picture their little sleep overs when they were younger, only they never knew each other til recently.

I took mom along for the long drive to help navigate and control behavior. She suggested we stop at a rest area mid way to walk the kids. So we did. That helped...some.

I have to tell you they were all wonderful people, I even got to meet Adam the middle hearing child. He hung with us for an hour and a half, before he retired to his room for his homework. Jessica is a doll! She along with big sis Rachel have bilateral cochlear implants just like my two children. Jessica was very patient with Brook and allowed her to play with her dolls and brush their hair. She kept the kids entertained the entire time. She was a BUSY girl. Just after the kids played for a while and got comfortable with each other, we all sat down to eat. Melissa is quite the hostess and provided not only a very nice lunch but dessert as well. And joining us for lunch was the famous Mary Ann who was THE AVT Rachel has written about and who has become a close friend to the family as well. Jessica told me all about her school which sounds fabulous and she's very excited to be in eighth grade now. I was pleased to get at least a decent first two hours out of the kids before it all hit the fan! When we got ready to leave I assured Jessica that I had the kids packed up and ready to stay with her for a while at Camp Jess. She's such a good little teacher, very patient (even though another child had their hands all over her stuff). I had hoped she would keep them for a few days and train them to be as quiet/calm/polite as she is. She said, "I'm in eighth grade, I have too much homework." So I had to take them back with me. I almost made it out before Elizabeth spoke and reminded me that I didn't have all of my children...

But just as we were ready to go, I think it was Elizabeth who suggested we ALL play a game of chase the Blakely kids. I wasn't really in the mood truth be known but we were guests and who are we to decline her ideas? I know it was the therapist in her that made her want to do some listening exercises while the child were in motion, increasing their distances from the speakers, and hiding in places no one could find them! Even Mary Ann the retired therapist couldn't escape the active game that seemed to never end. Here Rachel finally tackled one while Jessica got another only to escape again but after a 30 minute game of high speed chase that left everyone wearing sweat on their bodies and exhaustion on their faces, we wrangled both and got them in the car. I've never seen so many smiling faces as we pulled out of their drive way... they were happy we stayed to play that last game of chase with them. And yes guys, we had a great language expanding conversation on the way home. One child calmed down (the one w/severe ADHD at that) and one chose not to. She went straight to bed when we got home! **smile**

(possibly more later) I hated to leave you all hanging on who I got to meet up with, so I decided to spill the beans asap. I will say they are all very kind, laid back, very intelligent people and I'm so glad we had an opportunity to meet them. Rachel of course is ready to skip town again next weekend to begin her next adventure (she's so brave and ambitious as well).
Gage goes for mapping at the audiologist's office on Tuesday which he really needs and we'll get those FMs going in school. So far so good with school, had a great first week, let's hope it continues.


Anonymous said...

I'm curious, I remember Brook a long time ago was interested in Sign Language. Is she still interested or no?

Val said...

she likes the Signing Time show on PBS if we could ever catch it on...haven't seen it in a while.

Lucas'Mommy said...

AHH! How awesome is that!?! I should have guessed! I would have loved to have been a little birdy in that house that day!

Kat said...

Your blog update just made me cry! Life is so amazing and the world is so very small. We had the pleasure of working with Elizabeth while she was here in Texas. She is one amazing girl & is bound for great things. Thanks for sharing the day's memories. Loved it!

leah said...

Oh, what a great day! It sounds like you had a great time- too bad you couldn't convince Jessica to start up "camp Jess," lol!