Sunday, April 27, 2008


I was never one too excited about kids birthday parties, but I'll have to admit even I had fun at Amina's birthday party. I didn't really know what to expect, and to be honest it seemed like complete chaos to me at times, but the kids seemed to have a ball which was the whole point.
Thanks to all of you for coming and making the party such a success! And, a special, special thanks to all my family and friends who helped with the cooking, face painting, decorating, and arts and crafts. AND, I also want to thank all of you who brought all the TONS of gifts! It really means a lot to us that all of you always support all of our events and parties.

I'd like to send a special shoutout to Scooter and Lisa, who although are 2 of my favorite cousins, somehow manage to be absent from every family event I throw. Keep up the good work guys! Here's an update since you slackers missed it. We had:




And of course, TONS of CUTE, CUTE KIDDIES:

Oh yeah, Amina was there too:

Scooter, I hope Brazil was worth it. And Lisa, I don't know what makes you think CALIFORNIA was too far to come for all of this. One word guys "priorities" that's all I'm going to say.

Behind The Scenes: Amina's Night at the Museum

AMEEN: Ginneh, do you realize Amina's only 1?!?! What were we thinking? How much did we end up spending?

GINNEH: I don't know...we may have gone just a BIT overboard...

AMEEN: Did we pay the mortgage?

GINNEH: I think so...

AMEEN: How about At&T?

GINNEH: Hmmm...not sure about that...but at least everyone we've ever met in our whole life is here, so if our cell phones get turned off we won't need to speak to anyone for a while. We'll just send them the blog and they can email us, no one will suspect a thing!

AMEEN: True, true. Guess that means we better pay Comcast so the internet doesn't get disconnected.

GINNEH: Oh, shoot, yeah. Darn...You think Comcast takes Babies R Us giftcards?

Monday, April 21, 2008

What's That Number One Zodiac Sign?

TAURUS of course! (And I'm not just saying that because I happen to be a Taurus too!)

A year ago this time, this is what Amina looked like:

What a difference a year can make!

Amina was born on Saturday, April 21, 2008 at 1:14pm at Abington Memorial Hospital by Dr. Lisa Geer-Yan. I was induced because she was small for her gestational age and they wanted to get her out into the world to grow. I was in labor for 24 hours! I tried to go natural, but around hour 14 or 15, things started to get a little rocky and I got an epidural. Ameen and Tasha were in the room when I delivered and Tasha took pictures of the delivery (yucko). My mom got there about 2 minutes later. It was a beautiful, amazing and disgusting experience all at the same time.

Despite all of the ups and downs we've had this year, Amina has truly been a blessing and we couldn't ask for a more beautiful, wonderful, special child. She is and will always be our little princess. Thank you to all of you who have shared your time, your gifts, your prayers and everything else with us over the past year. We are looking forward to many, many more wonderful years with Amina and all of you sharing those joys with us.

In case you were wondering, Amina share's her birthday with Andie McDowell, Tony Danza, Queen Elizabeth, Charlotte Bronte, Sarah Michelle Gellar. (Nina Simone and Mark Twain also died on this date).

P.S - I bet you think Amina looks all cute in her little birthday tiara, we'll here's the scene about 2 minutes before:

Don't be fooled by that pretty face!!!

More pictures of Amina and her friends on her birthday:

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Team Amina

", can you cool it with the flashes for a minute? I'm on the phone with my therapist. Thanks hun."

Amina has a TEAM of professionals that she see's every week:
- 1 physical therapist that comes to our house
- 1 physical therapist that we see at CHOP
- 1 physical therapist that she sees for aquatherapy
- 1 special instructor that comes to our house

All this is in addition to her neurologist, neurosurgeon, cardiologist, geneticist, pediatrician, Williams Syndrome specialist, and feeding team which consists of a nutritionist, occupational therapist, speech pathologist and nurse practitioner.

They are all very nice people, but some she likes more than others. By the end of the week I can imagine that she's tired of people picking with her, so sometimes she refuses to cooperate. Now, you may be wondering how a 1 year old baby can refuse to do something...I really can't explain it, you just have to see it to believe it.

Here's a few pictures of Amina with some of her "team"



Friday, April 18, 2008

Amina Deep In Thought

From her first days on this earth, Amina would give you this look like she was staring through your soul. I know that sounds a little cliche, but its true. She's always been so intense and serious. She's friendly and smiles a lot now, but she's definately going to give you the once over before she becomes your friend. Sometimes she just puts her little hand on my face and stares in my eyes and I wonder, "What do you see little girl? What are you thinking about?" I definately think she knows some things that I don't know yet. I can't wait until she starts talking so she can finally tell me what's on her little mind.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

The cutest kid in the world

I don't really like sharing my dairy products, but there's nothing cuter than a kid eating ice cream.

Too bad I didn't know last weekend when we took this picture that she had Williams Syndrome and I should limit her calcium intake. Oops.

I'm sure there's many more worse mistakes I could have made. Next time we go to Bredenbeck's, we'll go to the side with the cookies and cakes instead of the ice cream. Its all about creative parenting.

And The Winner Is...

I hate to say I told you so but...

Williams Syndrome.

Thembi and I diagnosed her MONTHS ago thanks to Google and Wikipedia. Who needs diagnosticians and genetic tests when there's the internet? We've been referred to another doctor: Dr. Kaplan who specializes in Williams Syndrome.

We are preparing ourselves to raise an overly friendly, emotionally sensitive, musically talented daughter with a bad heart and bad teeth.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

I worry about these two

I'm not sure where this relationship is going, but I'm watching it closely.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Pronounced: Kee - Ar - Eee

We saw the neurosurgeon, Dr. Sutton today. He was supposed to be advising us on whether or not Amina should get the surgery to fix her Chiari Malformation. Basically he said that she does have a lot of issues, and surgery would probably help, but we can never be sure, but if it was his kid he'd probably do it.

WTF? Dude this is BRAIN SURGERY?!? You're going to have to give me something a little more concrete then it would "probably help" before I let you cut my kids head open. I guess you WOULD go ahead and do it if it were your ARE a BRAIN SURGEON after all. Who better than to perform a brain operation than a neurosurgeon that just happens to be your dad?

I really try to be thankful that we live in Philadelphia and have access to CHOP doctors (that's Children's Hospital of Philadelphia for all you out-of-towners) and optomistic about all the treatments that are available to us but sometimes I'm feel like if I see one more doctor I'm going to lose it.