A Bucket of Flowers

It’s just a bucket of wild flowers from the pipeline behind our house.  But, it is a bucket Savanna decided on her own to fill with flowers to give to Mommy on Easter Sunday.


We have done this activity before but, it required routine prompting even when other kids were already engaged in the activity.

This day she decided on her own to pick flowers for Mommy; a super heart-warming development that is new to us!

I gave Mommy the camera to take some pictures.  My heart skipped a beat when I saw Brandon using the camera!!  Yikes!  That was not the plan!  But, I must say, many of them turned out great.

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In January, Savanna’s development accelerated.  Even her SLP noticed she was responding very well to the process she previously fought or protested.  She relishes in positive praise when she acts as we expect or responds to our requests appropriately.  She loves stickers!

We use the token board far less these days, as she complies with most of our requests appropriately.  But I am finding this technique still useful overall.

Her conversation, inflection, tone, loudness, all have taken a developmental leap forward.  Her awareness of her surroundings and ability to change her communication if misunderstood has taken a quantum leap forward.

She recently had a re-evaluation of her language and results indicated her ability was slightly below normal to normal. I was not surprised. She remains in therapy because of her history and our concern about her pace of development.

She still struggles with pragmatic language and verb tense in a social setting.  She still struggles with phonetics.  In a formal setting, it is going well, but in a social setting, it is sometimes challenging to understand everything she says.  It is important for me to remember she is only four too.

Her fine motor skills are vastly improved, but this is an area where she is quite different from most around her.  Here are two recent examples of her ability, left is Savanna’s work and the right is Austin’s work.

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Potty-training is still a work in progress.  She seems to have #1 mastered during the day.  We had coerced a #2 out with intense effort on a couple of weekends.

I prompted her one day in a very simple way to try to make poo-poo on the potty.  This was after school during a quiet time when only she, Austin, and I are usually home. I walked away to do something else.

Then I heard Savanna yelling, “Daddy, I made a ‘fwoater’!!”

[Background: So, Brandon pooped in the lake one day a couple of summers ago, and the turd floated.  We all laughed and said he makes ‘floaters’.  It became household language, and clearly Savanna picked up on it.]

Then it happened again.  Then she went about 3 weeks without an accident.  And since have gone nearly 2 months without a serious accident.

Santa promised a new trampoline whenever Savanna could make #2 in the potty.  We now have a new trampoline!  (The first one did not survive a WWF-style slam into our house from a wind burst during a storm last summer.)  I am not ready to shed the diaper bag containing necessities for an accident, but that day is coming.


All our kids love the trampoline.  But sometimes Austin and Savanna play by themselves and it is great social interaction.



Rebecca wanted to give the kids tablets for Christmas – before the start of our trip to VA and KY.  I accepted this with some agony, as any parent knows these days these tablets can be as evil as they are wonderful.  Surprising to us a bit, but Savanna not only loves her tablet, but is very capable on it. She loves the puzzle apps!



She has recently found the PBS Kids app loves to watch those videos!  This requires internet access and these tablets are wifi only.  About 1 minute into the 15 minute drive to school, the cached video runs out and the video stops.  Savanna proclaims, “This thing is out of wofi!”  It is hilarious.



Savanna came to Rebecca genuinely excited to tell her a joke.  (Rebecca is into silly jokes, and so are her older brothers, so this is not out of thin air here, but…)  Her exact words:  “Why did the skeleton cross the road?  To get the balloons on the other side!”  Oh okay.  Cue the laugh…

Easter morning when the kids ‘hunt’ for eggs and such… Rebecca loves this.  Me, not so much.  I want it to look like this…


Rebecca is more this style….


All kidding aside, this Mommy knows how to make each of our kids feel so special and loved.  She really thinks about Holidays and how to make time with them unique and memorable.

As Easter Sunday came to a close, I found myself staring at that bucket of flowers on my counter that Savanna picked (with Austin and Brandon).  My thoughts drifted back to when life seemed impossible with Savanna.

April 1, marks the 3 year anniversary of Savanna’s second brain surgery, the one that has provided seizure control to this day.  A huge day in Savanna’s life!  We are blessed!  As I stared at the flowers, memories of those days and months immediately following her surgery hit me like bolts of lightning.  Waves of emotion washed over me as I thanked the Lord for His grace, and this bucket of flowers.

2 Timothy 2:1  “You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.”

10 thoughts on “A Bucket of Flowers

  1. This is a beautiful, touching account of several huge milestones for Savanna. What a lovely young lady she is !!!!. Thank you for sharing her. (By the way, have you noticed how many TV anchors struggle with verb tense?)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Dear Becky and Ken. Miracles do happen. Thank you for sharing this beautiful video with me. I just shared it with fifteen friends who prayed for you and your beautiful family.

    You are amazing parents, loving and fun. But you are also a terrific couple and the love you share with each other is a joy to see.

    Thank you and I send blessings of love, hope, peace and joy, Aunt Dee

    Sent from my iPad


    Liked by 1 person

  3. So happy to hear your blog! Sounds like Savannah is doing great and moving right along the path she needs to. What a blessing. Wishing all the best for you and your family and sending much love your way. Sheila  Rob and Sheila Dance http://www.robandsheiladance.com 609-519-0793 or email robandsheiladance@yahoo.com  Proud members of the World Swing Dance Council

    From: Savannas Journey To: robandsheiladance@yahoo.com Sent: Friday, April 1, 2016 6:54 PM Subject: [New post] A Bucket of Flowers #yiv6728732842 a:hover {color:red;}#yiv6728732842 a {text-decoration:none;color:#0088cc;}#yiv6728732842 a.yiv6728732842primaryactionlink:link, #yiv6728732842 a.yiv6728732842primaryactionlink:visited {background-color:#2585B2;color:#fff;}#yiv6728732842 a.yiv6728732842primaryactionlink:hover, #yiv6728732842 a.yiv6728732842primaryactionlink:active {background-color:#11729E;color:#fff;}#yiv6728732842 WordPress.com | kenlininger posted: “It’s just a bucket of wild flowers from the pipeline behind our house.  But, it is a bucket Savanna decided on her own to fill with flowers to give to Mommy on Easter Sunday.We have done this activity before but, it required routine prompting even” | |

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  4. I can not be more grateful for all the progress Savanna is making. You and Becky are such perfect parents for her and your 3 boys. God knew exactly what he was doing when he blessed you two. And thanks for the updates. Love them. Love you and your family. Connie

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Hi Ken, I am Lisa’s Aunt in Kentucky. My Grandson is autistic and has started the alphabet using a special script that seems to be easier to grasp. I thought you might want to try it. He colors VERY similar to Savanna “by only going in one direction.” He has had good results using the different font that “Handwriting Without Tears” has provided. I listened to Savanna and Austin laughing for the full two minutes of the video this morning, I love the sound of them playing. Continue with your family’s efforts with Savanna, she is an inspiration.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. My son started having seizures he had his first seizure at 6 year within 12 hours We spent 6 days in the hospital where different doctors looking at different things couldn’t agree on why he suffered a seizure… He has had genetic tests including a muscle biopsy. I used to wonder why my son were getting so many vaccinations shots at such a young age, Still the doctors wouldn’t admit it was the vaccination shots. After his 2nd seizure I wouldn’t allow my son to be vaccinated anymore but I believe the damage is done. It was during a casual conversation with a friend that I learned about Doctor Lawson Bryan i was so glad to know him on how his herbal product work, I contacted Lawson and explain everything to him and make purchase of his product. few days later i received the herbal medicine my son used it for 3 mouths i notice improvement in less than a month my son was totally cured of seizure now he have not experience any sign of seizure. Contact doctor Lawson Bryan on this + 1 (979) 475-5130


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