Saturday, October 25, 2014

MN Julien Life Update

Wow, it has been forever!  I looked back through our blog and realized I only updated it a couple times this summer!  It's a good thing I guess.  It means we've been busy enjoying and doing life. :)

Addie started kindergarten this fall at Glen Lake Elementary and is in Mrs. Brennan's class.  She loves school, new friends, and comes home every night eager to share something she learned.  Her favorites at school are recess, Spanish class, math and being with new friends.

We have had a fun fall season of vehicle fairs and activities: Harley Hopkins, Minnetonka Vehicle Open House, National Neighbors Night Out and the Chan Fire Station.  James and Addie love climbing around on all the trucks!!

At the end of August, we were blessed to go on our 4th (?) annual trip up to Lucas & Jessie's parent's cabin.  They are such amazing hosts and we always have a wonderful weekend!  Highlights were: reading stories in the sauna with Lucas, tubing, playing hide-and-seek, playing with the babies and fishing. :)

James learned to finally balance on his Strider this September.  He had spent a morning at Grandpa's house, and after an entire morning of riding, came home confident on the bike.  That's all it took!  Now he rides that thing to the park and when we go to get Addie at her bus stop.  Addie was encouraged to try as well, so Grandpa took off the wheels of a small bike for her to try.  She is so incredibly timid, but at least she is practicing.

Addie turned 6 this fall!!  She had her first friend birthday party and LOVED it!  We invited a few of her friends and had a tea party.  Grandma, Nana, Auntie Julie, Mimi and Mom all dressed up for the party as well.

Stefan and I were lucky enough to go to NY and Boston.  Stefan had a work visit on Long Island for a day, so we were able to fly together for a long weekend.  We spent 2 nights in NY.  I spent 1 day on my own in NYC.  I was so proud of myself. I woke up early, caught a train to Penn Station, then hoped on a Bus Tour.  I was able to see the 9/11 Memorial (amazing), went on a ferry ride past Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty, saw the Brooklyn Bridge, Rockefeller Center, Theater District, went shopping, Time Square, ate the best slice of pizza, and had a blast (even though it rained the entire day!!).  The next day Stef and I went to the top of the Empire State Building.  Breathtaking!!  We then caught a train up to Boston to visit Dan and Maari.  Boston is a gorgeous city.  We had an amazing time and Dan and Maari were wonderful hosts and tour guides!  Thanks you guys for a great weekend.

This October, my sweet Grandpa Gene went to be with Jesus.  We miss him so much already.  He was a wonderful man.  Heaven gained a gem!  We celebrated his life today at his funeral.  It was wonderful to gather friends and family, and to be able to share stories of Gramps.

Updates on Little Lukey Poo:
-Genetics testing all came back negative, nothing found again.  We have a follow-up in December where they may choose to run another series of tests.  At this point, they say it is a long shot that we will find a specific syndrome.
-Luke had his first helmet made in July at Gillette, didn't fit.  Second one, in August, didn't fit.  Last one, in September, gave him a pretty nasty cut.  So... we were discharged from Gillette and sent down to Children's for a second opinion.  We just met with the team yesterday, and they are going to give it a try!
-PM&R doctor had him fitted for leg braces to wear at night.  We've only tried them once and he screams in pain, so I'm not sure how we are going to ease into them. :(
-Luke is now a whopping 13 lbs. 2 oz.  Such a peanut!  We saw a family at DSW this weekend, and their daughter was 2 years old and only 19 lbs.  It so gave me a glimpse of what Luke might look like.  This tiny little sweet peanut!
-Meet with the neurologist last week.  Stefan and Warren were able to also attend the appointment.  Nothing new, he just wants to follow Luke every 8 months to make sure his head is growing and that he is not having any seizures.
-BEST UPDATE: Luke was chosen through Starkey Hearing Foundation and the MLB All-Star game to receive a free pair of Starkey hearing aids.  Bill Austin, the CEO, was the one who fit and created his hearing aids.  What an amazing experience!!!  They are in the ear aids, and work beautifully! 

Little Luke continues to grow and gain new abilities.  Thank you again for all your prayers!  We are truly blessed.  Love, The MN Juliens
Addie teaching Luke how to play the piano.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Summer, oh summer!

Where have you gone???  I feel like this summer has just flown by.  We had so much fun, but I can't believe it is almost done!  :)

Addie is eagerly anticipating the start of her education.  Let me rephrase that, she is excited to use her new lunch box, thermos, play on the playground, make new friends and meet her teacher!  She is NOT excited when we explained that school is 9 months of the year, and it goes on until you are 18.  She broke down in tears when she heard that part! 

James recent addiction is with climbing, jumping, twisting, and summer saulting (lots of "inappropriate" use of my couches!)  His buddy Ben got him watching American Ninja Warriors.  Needless to say, there has been a lot very close calls in our house!  We are signing him up for gymnastics this winter, and he is ecstatic.  He explains to everyone, "Addie gets to go to kindergarten and I get to go to gymnastics!"

Lukey Poo is almost 9 months old and getting stronger every day!  His big news is....  He started smiling again on Monday!  He took a 7 month hiatus in the smiling department, but it's back!  Deep down, I knew he'd smile again.  :) His quick smirk and full smile both light up the room.  Addie and James both have witnessed it and get so incredibly excited when he does it!  He is also gaining a lot of neck strength.  He has a long way to go, but it is so encouraging what we do see! 

Stefan and I are doing well and are excitedly planning our trip to New York and Boston in September.  My parents graciously offered to watch our kiddos while I accompany Stef on a work trip to New York.  We are going to stay there 2 nights and then take the train up to Boston to visit my brother and his fiancee Maari.  Can't wait!

My sweet Grandpa Gene, Boppa to the kids, was diagnosed with cancer in early July.  Prayers of comfort, peace, and strength for my grandpa and grandma during this difficult time would be greatly appreciated.  We love you Mimi & Boppa!

Stefan and I are about to sit down to the movie God's Not Dead!  Pretty excited!

Love, The MN Juliens

Sunday, August 03, 2014

Summerland Pictures!

 Annual "golfing in the nude" photo of James!!!

 Great train robbery was AWESOME!!! 
 James loved the guns!
 Annual OR picture with Papa.
 Fun time with cousins.

 Sarah, Fergus, and Tess the Mess!
 Mark and Kim's Christmas card!

 The girls.

 Nana and her boys!
 All the ladies in our Italian outfits!
Family pic!
Our little sweetie pies!