Countdown to Casts-Off! 0!

Today was the day!

Joshua got his casts off!

Look at these adorable little legs!  It is going to be so sweet to get to see them every day!

He took a tub bath for the first time in over 5 months tonight and had to get used to it again.  

Unfortunately, I couldn't be there to witness it since I was at home recovering from the flu, which seems to have decided to settle in my throat.  Truly like swallowing shards of glass.  No voice at all.  If it weren't for that fact that the only thing I can swallow (even with the help of gargled Lidocaine!) is macaroni & cheese, popsicles and ice cream...I'd be saying hello weight loss.  

Kevin's parents had been planning on coming over today to stay  with the girls.  Since I couldn't go, Kevin's dad went in my place...3 generation of McC men outing.  Grandma stayed behind and did what I couldn't since I was quarantined to my room!

Kevin said Joshua did absolutely wonderfully, with the minor exception of seeing Dr. vB, who has fallen on Joshua's popularity charts dramatically in the last couple of months.  Apparently as soon as he sat down to look at Joshua's cast-free feet the waterworks started.  Poor guy.  He doesn't understand that he is the guy to see when you have Arthrogryposis and that Dr. vB is actually helping him...eventhough it hurts.

Major spiritual lesson for me to remember there.  The process of "working all things for the good of those who love the Lord and are called according to His purposes" (Rom 8:21) can be painful (possibly more often than not?).  Trust the Great Physician, Mandy.  What hurts now is truly going to be used for His good and glory.

Anyway...Joshua not only got his casts off, but he came home with his new much lighter leg hugging apparatus.  Braces.  24/7.  Hopefully, Joshua will not do with these what he did with his ones he had in China...take them off as soon as adult figures left the room.  He has several sisters watching like hawks to rat him out intervene in his best interests should the velcro start ripping.

So, on this last day of Countdown to Casts-Off...

I am thankful for....

Shriner's & Dr. vB and how God has 
used them to help my Joshua's legs!

In Him,


Countdown to Casts-Off! 3-2-1-0! Actually only 1-0...

Today, with only 3 days left  1 day left until Joshua's casts (Lord willing!) come off...

I am thankful for....

A little boy who both 
walks and dances IN HIS CASTS!

Oh, yes, he does!

On New Year's Eve, Joshua began walking on his casts.  We had been at a friend's house where children outnumbered adults and Joshua decided he needed to get in on the action.  (Why his 5 older siblings hadn't motivated him before, I'm not sure.)  

And he's never looked back.

Not only has he worn the toes and heels out of his casts from walking on them, but he has also managed to perfect his dance moves in the middle of the family room. 

(This is an old video.  Sorry!)

I just love it!  He does not let anything get in his way and always looks for a way to make the best of everything!

In Him,

ps....why am I late with this post?  The yuck that the kids had has decided to take up residence in me.  Looks like Kevin will be going solo to Philadelphia.  Disappointed doesn't even begin to touch how I feel about not being able to go.  Praying for contentment.


Countdown to Casts-Off! 4-3-2-1-0

Today there are only 4 days left until the casts come off!  

Today on (insert echoing voice)...

Day 4 of the Countdown to Casts-Off!

I am thankful for...

A Stronger Back! 

You read that right...a stronger back!  Before we brought Lily home  a little less than 3 years ago, I was having issues with the middle of my back going out occasionally.  I was very concerned that it would happen in China when I needed to be carrying her.  

Praise God!  It did not!  In the process of carrying Lily everywhere in the front carrier my back seemed to only improve rather than worsen.

However, when we began the process of adopting Joshua and I saw that he was much heavier than Lily, I became a little concerned about my back again. 

 I prayed about it and made sure I worked it out well at the gym in the months preceding his joining us (gym, oh gym...wherefore art thou, gym?  I miss those days.  Maybe this summer?  I digress.).  

Anyhow, add the casts and having to lift Joshua onto everything...including the potty more times than I can count in a day...and, well, I wasn't so sure how my back would take to the extra strain.

Guess what?!  God allowed my back to get stronger rather than go out!  Yippee!  Initially, I had to remind myself to lift him with my legs (squats!) and tighten my abs, and above all not lift from my lower back.  Now, it seems to be habit.

I actually will miss this part of his wearing casts.  It has been good exercise and strength building for me since I haven't been able to get to the gym regularly ...since I went to China.  

In all things, give thanks!

In Him,


Countdown to Casts-Off! 5-4-3-2-1-0

Only 5 days left until Joshua's casts come off!

And today is a special day in our home!  It is Kevin's birthday!

I wish everyone was feeling well so we could celebrate whole hog. 

However, kids with the flu have not kept me from making his favorites: Homemade Spaghetti for dinner...

and for dessert: Carrot Cake!  

Slowed me down...yes.  Prevented...no.

And because it is his special day, today on...

Day 5 of the Countdown to Casts Off

In this casting process, I am thankful for....

Daddy's willingness to take off work and drive to Philadelphia several times to give me a rest!

The drive usually takes 4 hours up and 5 hours back.  Add on the time in the waiting room and it equates to a very long day.  Doable, but long. (I've met many who travel much further, so I am thankful we can drive and go home and sleep in our own beds!  Very thankful!  So please don't read that as complaining!)

When we were going every week or twice a week (Nov-Jan), I was getting run down.  My sweet husband saw this and took Joshua a couple of times for me.  

It was hard for me to not be there and hear the doctor's updates, but it was much needed rest...and I am thankful for a husband who was willing and able to step in.

Thank you, my sweet man!  And, Happy Birthday!

In Him,


Countdown to Casts-Off! 6-5-4-3-2-1-0!

We are just 6 days away from....casts off!

After a full 5 months in casts, Monday is the day that Joshua's casts will come off and stay off.

We are all a wee bit excited!  

It is hard to believe that he's been in them for almost a half year!  Time has truly flown and living with full leg casts has become our norm.  

Eventhough we are truly looking forward to seeing Joshua's sweet little legs again, there has been so much to be thankful for during these months of casting.  

So in honor of the coming 'release', I thought I would do a countdown to Casts-Off.  Each of these last six days, I will share one thing for which I have been thankful in this process.

Today...Number 6

Fun Cast Colors!

With 11 sets of casts under his belt, Joshua had many different colors and getting to pick his color each time made the experience a little less, umm, sad for him.



dark blue,

Dark blue again, green and red stripes, 

blue again, red and white candy cane legs, 

patriotic flag themed, soccer balls,

red, and finally, blue.  

I think that was the order!  They all became a blur!

In Him,



This Easter was different for our family.

Not because the joy of the day or the awe at the feat performed by my Savior is any less.  Far from it.

But because we had a keen reminder of the reason He had to come to earth, die for sin, and rise again.

When Adam sinned, death and sickness, weeds and flesh entered the world.  The perfection of the garden and unhindered relationship with the Father was gone.

So Christ came.  To remove the stains of sin. To allow us to come boldly to the throne of grace.  The dividing line removed, the curtain torn.  One day there will be no more sorrow, no more pain.  The sting of death is removed and the Great Physician will remove all illness.

Including the flu.  Praise God!  

All but Lily have been ill (Emma the only one confirmed to have the flu), and even this morning she has become the next victim.  Kevin & I are well, and praying we stay that way!

Even with his voice raspy from illness, Joshua was singing his favorite song yesterday...Resurrection Day.  

10,000 Reasons.

Even if we only had 1...Christ's resurrection, it would be enough to sing forevermore.

Enjoy my sick little boy praising the Savior!

In Him,