Friday, January 2, 2009


Ok, so it's not the best picture in the world of Ashton. It was getting close to bedtime and he HAD already eaten HIS dinner of S'better Chicken Fingers *gfcf* and Ian's Alphatots *gfcf* and his "milk" (dari-free powdered milk substitute). But when I made my husband and I's dinner (bacon-wrapped filet mignon steaks and green beans and dinner rolls) I thought of trying a trick and seeing if it worked. My trick was: telling Ashton that the green beans were green FRENCH FRIES!! (he ADORES french fries of any kind that are safe for him to eat) He quizically looked at me and said "Those aren't green french fries, those are green beans!". Oh his speech therapist would be proud; negation used, complete sentences, eye contact; you name it, he did it correctly! Anyways, to get to the point, I asked him if he wanted to try some and he looked at me said "No, I don't want to try green beans" and turned away from me. I told him if he didn't try ONE bite (it was a miniscule bite) that I would turn the TV off (this punishment, or rather, the THREAT of this punishment almost ALWAYS works!). He looked at me and said "No, turn the TV off, I want green beans!" hahaha .... so he gingerly took a bite (plain) and proclaimed it yummy whilst he had an awful look on his face. I asked him if he wanted to try them with kethcup (hey, Ronald Reagan said it WAS a vegetable after all, right???) and he perked up and said "YES PLEASE!" So I drug out the ketchup and he dipped his green beans in and ate probably 15 or so green beans before he decided he'd had enough. (he had already eaten HIS dinner if you remember). But the amazing thing is .... he hasn't eaten green beans in probably 8, or possibly even 9 YEARS!!! Anything squishy (liked cooked veggies tend to get) wouldn't last 2 seconds even NEAR his mouth, let alone in his mouth, chewed up and swallowed (at which point they would of normally been gagged on and thrown up). But he said he liked them and it even enticed his younger, 6yo, brother to try them and he proclaimed them YUMMY! Maybe we'll actually get them both to try a bigger variety of veggies but hey, this was a great and HUGE step forward. So YAY for Ashton!!!! He's getting past his texture issues and is actually trying (and liking!) new foods. Better yet, the foods he's trying are usually much healthier for him than he's ever eaten. Whew! Celebrate the small steps; they add up to BIG GIANT LEAPS!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Ashton's results from his food allergy testing

Wow - good thing we have went GFCF; he shows a moderate reaction to Casein and a low reaction to gluten. Those are both probably in those ranges because he's been GFCF since August; imagine the reactions he'd of had if he hadn't been GFCF yet! The BIG surprise though is oranges and grapefruit! While Ashton has never had grapefruit, he has eaten oranges (one of the few fruits he WILL eat!) and drinks orange juice/ sunny D almost DAILY!! So now we're under the advisement to remove ALL citrus fruits from his diet! (and I will be checking labels ..... just to be sure....). This really isn't that big of a deal but the juice is one way I was getting vitamins into Ashton, ugh! So now I need to get the stool sample sent in; so we can get the tests done for the yeast. We'll see how this goes. It's good to know and have a validation that we made the right move going GFCF, yay! But it's also sad to know that he might not ever be able to eat "normal" foods again!

Happy New Year 2009!!!!

Well, as you can see, my guys didn't *quite* make it until midnight... they made it until 11:35pm, 25mins to go! In fact, *I* almost didn't make it until midnight! LOL They were so excited at the prospect of staying up SO late and then they didn't even make it. I looked at my husband shortly after midnight and said "We're too old for this crap!" - hahaha ..... Maybe next year we'll just tape "Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve with Ryan Seacrest" and watch it the next day. I somehow don't think it'll have the same meaning.
Now that it's officially a new year, bring on the New Year's resolutions! My resolution is; I want to lose weight; and not just lose it for the sake of losing it, but lose it and get healthier in the process. I am roughly 40lbs over what I should be and while it's not adversely affecting my health as of yet, I want to get my weight back in check so that I stay the healthy person that I am. So, I will say that I am currently weighing approx 165lbs; yes, at 5 foot, I am considered obese. I HATE saying that but if I'm not truthful, then how will I truly want to change? So, a new year brings a new diet plan and excersize plan. Once the boys start back to school next week, I plan on posting daily to update what I'm eating throughout the day (I figure if I have to post it in a public viewing forum, I'm more likely to watch what I'm eating) and will also post what excersize I'm able to do throughout the day. We have a Nintendo Wii so that will probably be the bulk of my excersizing, though I do plan to go and walk outside when it's not too cold. So, we've had lots going on this past Fall/Winter thus far. First off, I finally squelched my fears and put Ashton on the GFCF (gluten free, casein free) diet. He started it near the end of August, so it's been over 4months and wow, has it been life-changing! While we have had some minor infractions (and one major infraction of eating 2 brown sugar cinnamon poptarts on Halloween), the diet has been pretty succesful so far. Initially, we had some really positive behavior changes; more eye contact, better focus and attention and he was so calm. Those changes don't seem to be AS apparent now, which leads me to believe that there are either other foods that are irritating him, or maybe something else entirely different. However, we have noticed some absolutely WONDERFUL changes in regards to digestion, etc. Ashton used to silently reflux upwards of 10times a day (which I fully believe is what caused him to want to eat; if he was eating than his throat was always coated, etc .... which of course, over eating can cause the reflux to worsen so the circle continued on and on .....). Now, he's no longer taking Prevacid (a RX for reflux) and he MIGHT reflux once every other day or so. Also, Ashton used to have really weird bowel symptoms. Constantly pooping (4-5 times A DAY!) and it was ALWAYS runny. That ceased within a month of the diet. Also, he constantly had a "diaper rash". Horrible and as soon as I'd see an improvement in the appearance of the rash, something would set him off and it'd been bright red and bleeding again. We no longer get rashes that bad! It is easy to tell when Ashton's had an infraction now though; usually within an hour or so the diarrhea starts as does the rashy bottom (which can take a week or so to clear up again) so I've been very diligent in making sure he does NOT get ANYTHING that has even TOUCHED wheat/gluten containing items or dairy/casein items. We changed the med he's on for some minor ADHD issues and it's been a wonderful change. He's now on 1mg of Risperdal in the AM, 5mg of Adderall XR in the AM nd then 0.1mg of Clonidine at night. He also takes 7.5mg of melatonin at night and he's not only going to sleep shortly after going to bed, he's also sleeping ALL NIGHT!! WOOHOO - sleep IS indeed a precious commodity in this house! Unfortunately, Ashton got very sick a few weeks ago and stopped eating, for nearly a week. What little he did eat (Burger King or Chick Fil A french fries), would usually get thrown back up and he lost nearly 10lbs in the span of a week. Turns out the poor guy had PNEUMONIA! He was SO sick and was napping nearly 5-7hrs a day on top of sleeping all night long! That's how sick he was. He's still napping nearly almost every day and it's been a week since he really started feeling better. Luckily the naps are only about 2hrs long, so that's a good thing. I just hope the napping stops since school starts back up on Monday. He missed school from Dec 16th - Dec 23rd (which was the last day before Winter Break). At that point I didn't care HOW much school he missed, I just wanted him better before the Christmas madness hit. He's gained back a couple of pounds (keeping mind that it didn't HURT him to lose 10lbs) Holden was diagnosed with ADHD back at the beginning of December. It's more the inattentive type (meaning he is easily distracted and lacks the ability to focus on things he needs to, etc...) although he can and does have his hyper moments. He started on Vyvanse (30mg) soon after and has been doing WONDERFULLY! His progress report after starting the meds (which incidentally came home the day of his 2 week checkup after starting the med) was GLOWING with positive remarks from his teacher. Not only that, but the school work that came home was MUCH improved over previous school work that had been sent home. The handwriting was neat (well, as neat as a 6yo boy can write, LOL) and the work you could tell had been done thoroughly and with focus. YAY! I'm SO happy that the meds have helped. Our only issue is that he seems to have HORRIBLE insomnia! But then again, he has NEVER been a super great sleeper and we've been giving him 10mg of melatonin at night to help him sleep. His pediatrician even put him on 0.1mg of Clonidine (same med as Ashton, LOL) and it's not really making a huge difference. I plan on calling the ped on Monday to see if we can change the dosage or something. Last night (which was New Year's Eve) I gave Holden his 10mg of Melatonin and his Clonidine and he was rearing to go until 11:35pm. Yes, he was trying to stay up 'til midnight, but he wasn't even acting REMOTELY sleepy until around 11:20 or so. This is a kid that under great circumstances is asleep by 8:15pm and I have to wake him up at 7am to get him ready for school. We'll see. David and I celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary on December 10th. WOW! 10years with the SAME person! I've basically spent my entire adult life with the same person and I couldn't be happier about that fact. We got each other some pretty unconventional presents; he got the Lego Ultimate Collector's Millenium Falcon and I got a Canon EOS XS Digital SLR camera. David thoroughly enjoyed putting the lego set together (took him about 4 days total ....) and I have really enjoyed playing around with my new camera. I can't wait to take the boys to the park or zoo when it's warmer and get some great pictures! Anyways, after this long-winded blog post (typed while I've been watching the Capital One Bowl featuring MSU vs Georgia State), I think that's the end of my update. I wish you all a very VERY Happy New Year and may 2009 bring along the changes that so many of us in this country AND world are hoping for!