Pictures by Caelia

These are some pictures that Caeli took when she found my camera. She loves taking pictures.

Yeah, she's my sister...

Masha has had several doctor appointments since we got home. She is not thrilled with these but it is helping us to help her. Masha has several health issues that need attention. The first thing that will be corrected is her vision. She has Superior Oblique Palsy as well as crossed eyes. Our doctor explained that she sees the world at an angle and that when her eyes cross, she sees double and angled. This makes her very unsteady on her feet. She must have someone close enough to catch her because she frequently loses her balance. Additionally, this is what causes her to tip her head to the side - she is attempting to focus! We feel that she will be so much happier when she sees the world as it should be seen. Her actual vision is perfect for her age, so those pretty blue eyes will not need glasses after surgery. This surgery will take about an hour and we will be scheduling it as soon as we have her cardiologist appointment.

Masha was born with a small hole in her heart. This is very common in children with Down syndrome. Our family physician does not hear anything and it is possible that it has closed completely - this was the case with Lera but we want to have this checked out before surgery.

All of her blood work was perfect. No sign of hypothyroidism or malnutrition. We really didn't expect malnutrition - she is a very good eater. She likes meat and potatoes but really fusses when we try to feed her raw fruits or veggies. And birthday cake is magical to her! Sorry again, Janet, for her grabbing a handful at Jaxton's birthday before he could blow out the candles. She did this at Caelia's party as well.

Speaking of which, Caelia is now a big 8 year-old girl! We had a party for her and for Masha's arrival - a barbecue with lots of friends and lots of kids. Caeli insisted for a week that she wanted balloons at her birthday party, so Randy bought a bunch of Mylar balloons home the day of her party. She was thrilled (so were Lera and Masha) but we soon noticed that they were disappearing. Caelia would grab a balloon, run outside and release it into the air! Oh, well, her birthday - her balloons. She was happy about them but not about pictures so here is the one we got of our birthday girl. And this one is of our Cake Monster. Looks innocent doesn't she? Ignore the evidence.

Masha is not afraid to jump into the midst of the family as though she has always been here. I love watching her play with my big girls!

Oh and state her opinion of having another photo taken!

And these photos are just because I love to show off my beautiful girls (would love to show off my handsome son but he is being a teenager).

Fianlly, there is this picture. Not great focus but totally natural. Masha had crawled up into Caelia's lap and was falling asleep.