Friday, January 1, 2010

The Max year in review; how did your kids wow you?

These are my Max highlights of the year:

January: Max shows us how much imagination he's got.

February: Max falls for Peeps.

March: Max uses both hands without prompting.

April: Max plays ball for the first time on a team.

May: Max's vocabulary grows.

June: A Bill of Rights For Parents of Kids With Special Needs, dedicated to Max and all of our kids.

July: Max rides his mini tractor like a maniac.

August: Holy cow—Max gets stem cell therapy.

September: Max tries his hand at fishing.

October: Max decides he would like his Daddy to be eaten by a snake. Also, Max discovers purple.

November: Max's independence continues to emerge.

December: Max learns how to say and spell out his name. And sing the Spongebob Squarepants song. I never thought I'd be grateful to Spongebob Squarepants.

I'm hoping 2010 brings lots more progress, for Max and for your kids. too. May they grow stronger and healthier and even cuter, exceed our greatest expectations, and continue to bring lots and lots of joy to everyone lucky enough to be part of their lives.

What were your child's biggest milestones this year?


  1. My cherub has had a HUGE year. This year she learnt to crawl, point, w-sit, say lots of words, had stable kidney function and NO hospital admissions - its been a great year for her and we are so thankful.

  2. Ok, herte's a dumb question, and not taking anything away from Max, who had a briliant year, but don't you have 2 kids?

    Happy new year.

  3. Hey Ellen, I'm just getting all caught up. Your vacation looked fabulous. Hope that knee heals up quickly. The interview with Erin was great! I too have been sucked into Max's purple spell. I think of him everytime I see purple.
    What a great year for you guys!
    Happy New Year!

  4. Great post! Your kids are adorable--and Max's grin is fantastic.I also read about your leg--hope you are doing okay. This year, I realize how much I take for granted with my kids. My four year old is reading, though and I'm impressed as I did not even teach her yet--she got tired of waiting for me! My older kids are very nice in a tough culture, so that is also great.

  5. Wow! Sounds like Max had a great 2009. How was Sabrina's 2009? What did she achieve? You are so lucky to have two cute kids!

  6. I was going to ask about Sabrina, but I see others beat me to it !!

  7. max has grown I hope 2010 brings even more groth Happy new year to all of u

  8. What a wonderful report to read on this first day of Twenty 10! Thanks for all of your posts. It is such encouragement to me. And we hope it is a good year for all of you.

  9. Wows off the top of my head---

    Substantial decrease in meltdowns and tantrums across the board! Improved use of "Indoor voice" for my oldest! Amazing improvement in "ability to stay on task" for both! They've been fooled, er, convinced, into thinking that stretching (key for the younger one) is FUN. They're also "into" outdoor activities with my dad in a big way--fishing, working in the garden and yard, "helping" with home repairs, going along with him in the snow plow, that kind of stuff.

    Whose responsible for a lot of this improvement? My father, mostly. I wish I could take credit, but the truth is, they do listen to their Grampapa and love spending time with him. They're good judges of character, I must say!

  10. Am I the only one who suspects that all those non-linky people are, in fact, just one big giant troll? Clearly the name of the blog is "To the Max" and not "Ellen's Kids."

    Now I forgot what I actually wanted to say about this post. Bah!

  11. Katy, I am a non-linky person simply because I use more than one computer that ain't mine, and don't have a Gmail address, and I thought the same thing. "To The Max" is pretty self-evident.

    There are jerks in the world. No idea why that is...

  12. How blessed we are to witness these wonderful milestones! What a awesome miracle Max is!

  13. Hooray for Max and Happy New Year to you all!

    My oldest is learning how to drive so that is big milestone for us.

  14. Hey Kids play nice Everyone is entitled to their own thoughts and opinions They call it free speech, and its an amendment.

  15. Yay Max!

    Queen Teen learned more signs and started to use them herself. She loves teaching me ASL. This is a big step from a year ago when she wouldn't even consider learning sign language.

  16. That was a very great overview. I am happy to hear that Max is doing so well.

  17. Thanks, all, and a bing "YAY!!!" for your kids! I think what Katy meant was that the two posts here from Anonymous were by one and the same person. And, um, yeah, I'm well aware of Sabrina's existence. ;) This is a blog about raising a child with special needs, I chose to focus my year-end review on him.

  18. I just started to read your blog and I think you have an amazing family! Congratulations to Max on his achievements, may 2010 bring many more!

  19. My Hannah was diagnosed in April with CP at 8 months of age. She has skipped crawling and instead is an experienced butt scooter. She can almost pull herself to standing from sitting on the floor. She can stand for 2-10 seconds at a time, she clearly wants to walk. She is starting to open and use her right hand more every day, and right now is yanking on both my breast pump and my computer, just like a regular baby. And she says Hi!

    I come here for inspiration because I am still reeling from the joining the special needs club. I love you, Ellen, and I totally get that this blog is about your celebration of Max, and I have no doubts at all that you are also a wonderful mother to Sabrina. You rock, girlfriend! And, thanks, because, obviously.

  20. I just read every single one of the max year in review posts and thought they were great!

    Keep up the positive attitude and inspirational posts!

  21. Great post, Ellen! I still think Daniel's latest accomplishment - playing on a hockey team - is one of my favorite. Learning to walk wasn't guaranteed for him, and now he can skate! Pretty amazing stuff.
    Oh, and I'm so glad I read the Anonymous posts! Did I forget to mention that Daniel has a twin brother named Philbert? He lives in the basement, so he's often overlooked. He's not the "special" twin, after all.

  22. Thanks, Ellen, for clearing up my intent.

    Also, yay! a troll! You're officially big-time.

  23. LOVE Max's year-end in review! What a huge year! Jack's big accomplishments? Actually opening and enjoying presents at Christmas. Learning to play with his cousins. And loving it. Being able to notice and express that he missed his daddy when daddy went to work. Being able to take the paper off a lollipop (well, once or twice).

    So many of our kids' accomplishments may seem like small potatoes when compared to typical kids. But WE know what huge milestones they are. And we appreciate them more than anyone could know.

    Hugs on such a great year.

  24. You know, I have never sat down and read posts at your blog as much as I'd like to, so when you posted something on Twitter, I clicked the link because I wanted to see what Max had been up to and I read through all the posts you highlighted in this here (and then some. LOL).

    I had to stop and say that your family is just beautiful! You have such wonderful awesome kids!

    And Max, Max just makes me happy and smile. Oh heck, both of them made me smile watching them sing Spongebob Squarepants. I've heard that tune so many times over here mysel.

    We don't have special needs per say here, but we have our battles and you and what you are doing with your blog is, I can't think of a better word than beautiful again. Inspirational.

    So, here's a big YAY MAX from a mama to 4 in Iowa who thinks he rocks!


Thanks for sharing!

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