we went to see the pediatric opthamologist today since claire is not tracking with her eyes well. we needed clarification that her eyes were structurally normal and all their parts were in the right places. it was a bit of concern b/c eye nerve problems go hand in hand with the part of her brain that is missing. fortunately, her eyes are developed exactly how they are supposed to be! what this means is claire has cortical visual impairment. meaning that her eyes can see but her brain is not processing the information correctly all the time. there is great reason to hope that claire’s brain will figure out how to “see” better as time goes on and with the help of visual therapy. we plan on starting that asap to give claire for visual stimulation. we are so thankful that even in the midst of all these struggles and trials, we still can receive little rays of hope for claire and celebrate the joy that she is in our lives. IMG_0079

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Dec 24, 2008

this week we celebrated two annual occasions in the vender/evjen families. last saturday was tamale time at adrian’s dad’s house. we get covered in masa and red sauce but we have a blast making them! it’s a day full of joking around, great family time and most of all seriously yummy rewards when we get finished. the hours of work are definitely worth it! i think adrian has ate two dozen tamales himself since then. here’s a pic from that day of claire and her tio eric who came into town for the holidays:IMG_0063

and yesterday the girls of the evjen family (plus our new addition of matt’s gf yasmine!) got together to bake like crazy ladies. we made cookies, bars, bark, balls and i even tried my hand at a disasterous macaroon recipe. hint: when it calls for parchment paper don’t try to sub wax paper, it does really funky things to your oven and cookies! we spent the evening getting covered in flour, doing our best whitney houston impersonations and laughing until our faces hurt. i look forward to this time with my mom every year and i am so happy i get to share it with two very special girls now. here’s a pic of us gorgeous ladies:IMG_0133

hope you had a fun time preparing for your holidays!

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