The greats! (in no particular order and no where near an exhaustive list):

  • Getting Laelia out of casts!!!

  • Watching Laelia use her legs in the bathtub for the first time!

  • Getting help buying a $6,500 pair of wonderful orthopedic shoes that let us put off major surgery!

  • Being able to put Lali in pants and socks for the first time!

  • Our church donating and installing two AC units to our VERY picky apt manager’s specifications.

  • Getting new pots and pans that don’t leave black flecks of Teflon in our food!

  • Getting awarded Respite care from the YMCA through the Regional Center. (That’s free babysitting folks!)

  • Laelia learning her first real word, “Uh oh!” And using it whenever she drops things on purpose.

  • Getting another (rolls eyes) “gookie” (Laelia’s word for kitty). That makes three.

  • Laelia learning to roll from back to tummy and tummy to back!

  • Finding special baby shoes that fit over orthotics at our local Payless!

  • Getting encouraging emails from friends and family.

  • Visits from sisters and aunts and uncles and cousins and grandparents!!!

  • Being given Guitar Hero World Tour for free!!! Playing with friends!

  • Making new friends at church–especially Chelsea who volunteered to do Lali’s stretches three afternoons a week and never missed a day.

  • Alexis getting a raise and being paid by her company to go to Washington DC for an amazing trip!

  • Getting to go home for Thanksgiving and see Alexis’ dad’s side of the family as per tradition.

  • Taking Laelia to Disneyland for the first time!

  • Meeting another family affected by arthrogryposis and sharing similar experiences.

  • Putting up a beautiful Christmas tree and watching Lali fall quiet in its presence.


The not-so-greats:

  • Being told by orthopedic doctors that our daughter would never walk.

  • Learning Laelia was missing biceps and would never lift her arms.

  • Losing Gram.

  • Losing months of our lives to government bureaucracy and applications that were ALL denied!

  • All three of us getting the same cold several times! And to a lesser extent, the stomach bug.

  • Having to go back to work only part time (Alexis).

  • Sticking to our budget even when we really, REALLY wanted ice cream!

  • Having to stop updating Lali’s website while dealing with Internet psychos.

  • Laelia having a hip injury while Mommy was in DC.

  • Losing all ornaments off the bottom two rows of our Christmas Tree’s branches. (Bad gookies!)


As we look back from the other end of 2008, it seems life is still good and God is still great. We love each other and we are loved. Even the hard things with Laelia’s condition seem normal now. Next year we are confident that our great list will be ten times as long as our not-so-great list! Thanks for your prayers and we love you!

Charles the Great, Alexis Joy and baby Laelia Sky


Merry Christmas!


One Response to “2008”

  1. Robin Clark says:

    Merry Christmas Wesley’s! Your list of greats is long indeed. When I watch Laelia today and see what she’s doing, it seems clear that next year’s list of greats will at least double!

    Robin Clark

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