Day 489: Thanks Joe!

Madison had another great morning at March of Dimes. She took 5 independent steps! Madi and Mommy also played catch while Madison stood up the whole time!

Madison then went to WindReach to have her last spring session ride with Joe. They worked together in the outdoor ring for half the lesson and then went for a walk on the back trail. Madi’s friend Bonnie went to cheer her on. At the end of the lesson Joe gave Madison a special ribbon to congratulate her on the time they spent together and all that they accomplished. Madison can’t wait to keep learning with Joe this summer during their summer program.

At the end of her day, Madison visited a dance studio with Mommy, Nana and Jack. Madison attended a trial dance class for a summer dance program run by two OT’s who teach classes designed for children with special needs. She put on a pink boa and listened to different types of music while in her walker. Madison ended up being the youngest registered for the studio, and with the other program locations being so far away – Madison will continue looking for other options to learning how to dance in her walker. Jack loved the music and danced and screamed in Nana’s lap!

Before bed, Madison visited Pam and Medford to show them her ribbon from Joe and to deliver some mail. They cheered her on as she ran all over the place in her walker and they helped her put her new frog friend in the front garden.

On a sad note we no longer have space on the blog for photos or videos so we will try to figure out a solution hopefully in the next few days. 

Day 488: Bootcamp Tuesday

Madison worked so hard today – Mommy was so proud! This week is an “overlap” week of old programs ending and new ones starting which all happen within this one week, which equals very busy days for little Madison…today was especially busy, but in true Madison form she loved every minute and had a smile on her face all day. 

Before her day started, Madison dropped off Jack with Aunt Nadia and Nate. She was happy to see Nate to start off her day and they had a visit from the neighbourhood cat Cecil.

Her day started with her fun playgroup at March of Dimes! She did excellent walking with her canes and worked on various transitions throughout a super fun obstacle course.

She was then off to Grandview for every single therapy – PT, OT and Speech that they combined into a 2 hour session! Her speech therapist Christine followed Madison through various activities in both PT and OT to help her therapists incorporate ideas to increase her breath control for projecting her voice. She is clearer and has louder voice control when sitting down with her feet flat on the floor, legs at 90 degrees and sitting in a chair with a high back. When whole body movements are required (such as walking) her tone kicks in within her diaphragm and vocal cords which creates a smaller voice that can sometimes sounds cracked or raspy. We are being asked to praise Madison every single time she is able to project her voice. If she is too quiet or too loud we are being asked to give her immediate feedback using analogies of things she understands like animals. “What you just said was quiet like a little mouse… Can you make it louder like a lion” we are also going to start cueing her to take bigger breaths to help her with her volume.

Once she got home she had a super long nap and then played with Jack. In total Madison was in some sort of therapy for 4 hours today – and we are all super proud of her for every minute of them!

Day 487: Fun with New Friends!

Madison went to March of Dimes this morning for a group conductive ed class. She loved working on similar skills as some of her new friends. She practiced using her canes and worked on sitting and stretching and loved taking a break to eat a snack with her little buddies.

Madison spent her afternoon entertaining her brother and playing around the house. Mommy refused to pick her up to carry her places so Madison decided to use her outdoor walker inside the house which she was very proud of.

​​​Before dinner Madison and Emily worked on some skills in the basement and she got a good long stretch in.

While Madi had bath time and bed with Daddy, Mommy and Jack went to Lisa’s house for a meeting for the upcoming 5th Annual Mike Gregoire Memorial Golf Tournament. It’s only 104 days away! Through the generosity of the committee and family, Madison will be one of the recipients of the fundraising taking part in this years tournament! The website with golfer and dinner registeration information will be launched shortly…stay tuned!!! 

Day 486: Happy Father’s Day!

Madison had a great day celebrating her Dad, Papa and Uncle Mark! She went out for breakfast and then made a trip to the Oshawa Zoo! Other then the Mommy/Daddy fail for bringing the wrong walker (indoor silver was brought instead of outdoor mega wheels) it was a great day! Madison fed her little animal friends popcorn and raisins and wondered around with her cousin Nate. 

Spent the morning with Daddy in bed opening presents!


The Zoo!

Day 485: Lazy Saturday

Today was Madison’s first day of summer.  She slept in, had a yummy breakfast and then went to get a massage.

For many different reasons her legs have been stiffer then usual. Shannon did a great job on Madison’s legs. She observed that Madison’s hips, knees and ankles were very swollen and it felt like there were little marbles in her calf muscles. Madison was uncomfortable because of the stiffness but did a great job lying still for Shannon to work her magic. At the end, Shannon decided to tape Madison’s muscles around her knees and up the back of her hamstrings to take the pressure off her joints and to give her muscles a rest. We are going to try and leave the tape on for a few days.

Madison had a great nap after her massage and then spent the rest of the day roaming around the backyard and watching the Jays game.

Day 484: And That’s A Wrap!

And just like that, Madi is finished her first year of pre-school!

Today was Madison’s last day of school. They had a celebration with family and a graduation for her classmates who are off to kindergarten in the fall.

The celebration started with a video of photos taken all through the school year. It was amazing to see how much Madison and her friends have changed. After the video, the teachers did a special presentation for the graduates, followed by music circle. Nana and Uncle Barker joined Mommy, Daddy & Jack in the celebration. At the end Madison received her report card from her teachers, occupational therapist and physiotherapist with some excellent ideas for goals for the next school year.

Madison had a spectacular year at Centennial. Big moments/memories are: learning to use her walker, going up and down stairs by herself, sitting in a chair unsupported, learning over 20 songs, learning the alphabet, counting to 20, reading 5 sight words, recognizing and sorting all the names in her class, learning all colours & shapes, spelling her name, sorting objects biggest to smallest, drinking from an open cup, using a spoon and fork to feed herself and the start of potty training! 

All of her teachers and volunteers were truly amazing and we can easily say that this year was life changing for Madison and sending her to Centennial was the best decision! 

Madison will be returning to Centennial again in September for one final year in preparation for kindergarten. We can’t wait to see how much more she will flourish there next year!

​​​​After a busy morning and a super long nap, Madison visited with Pam and Medford to have a relaxing end to her day. They played with play dough, experimented with special lights in a jar of water and Madison taught Jack how to play and sing twinkle twinkle on the piano. 

Madison and Jack had a great time playing on the floor before bed. Madi is a wonderful big sister and loves to help Jack try new things like rolling over. 


This video was sent to us today. It is the conductive education video that was made to raise awareness about the good work March of Dimes is doing. 

Day 482 & 483: Celebrating Conductive Education!

Madison spent her Wednesday with Nana & Papa going from school, to a ride with Joe and then hanging out at the house and helping Mommy. At riding lessons she had all her grandparents in the cheering section watching as she worked on letting go of the saddle with both hands to touch her leg or foot or to hold a pole with a Canada flag on it. It was a beautiful day. Madison also had a special visit from her Uncle Barker from Kirkland Lake who is visiting for a few days. Madison has loved her visit so far and playtime. While Madi was busy being entertained at the house, Mommy attended a special evening downtown at the Royal York Hotel.


Madison has thrived in Conductive Education at March of Dimes. She always learns something new at each class and has developed an amazing awareness of her body and how to move it in different environments and different situations. She is always happy and proud of herself when she leaves her session. Madison was asked to be a part of a large fundraising initiative specifically benefiting Condictive Ed so of course everyone jumped on board and said yes. A few weeks ago was a post about a video session Madison was a part of. They pieced together Madison’s video with an interview Mommy had done and created a short video to demonstrate what CE is all about and how it changes peoples lives. 

Last night was The Ability and Beyond Gala at the Royal York benefiting CE. It was hosted by Carolyn Mackenzie from Global tv and Aron Ralston was the keynote speaker. The video featuring Madison was premiered in front of 500 dinner guests. Mommy was asked to present the Corporate Spirit Award to Michael Cole, Bell’s Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer. There was a live auction, a 50/50 draw and a silent auction all benefiting CE and they all seemed to do really well. Mommy was thrilled that Aunts Janine and Suzanne were able to attend to celebrate Madison’s successes this year with Mommy, but also as a nice night out to thank them for all of their help with Madison – they bring Madison to CE every week! Madison will be getting a copy of the video in the next few days and then she will share it for all to see!

Today was Madison’s last CE class with Monika for the school year. Madison will be going to camp at March of Dimes over the summer and she will love being with a group of kids working on things like her, but we know she will miss Monika and the time they have just the two of them. She showed off all her skills to Daddy and Uncle Barker who caught the last part of the class. 

Day 481: An Afternoon At Grandview

Jack had a great play date with Owen this morning while Mommy was out.

Madison and Jack both had physio at Grandview this afternoon and Madison had OT as well. Jack worked hard at strengthening the right side of his neck, and stretching it out. He has a consult next month with Madison’s orthotist to look at getting fit for a helmet to help reshape his head. Madison worked hard with her walking during physio and cut and glued Daddy a Father’s Day gift during OT.

Madison also did some good walking in the water with Ryan tonight at the pool. They also worked on her back floats. Madison has to continue to work on thinking about relaxing her core and upper body to help her more naturally float. It was her last class tonight for the spring session so she is on a break from the pool for a few weeks and then she will work with Ryan again this summer. After her class she and Ruby had playtime together.

Day 480: Last Week of School!

Madison had a great morning at school. She loved using her favourite markers at sensory time, and her and her buddy Emma held hands during snack and chatted away.

Madison spent her afternoon with Grandma and Grandpa. She took care of her pink flower garden, went for a walk to the park, went on the swings and her friend Stanley even went up on the slide with her. 

Madisons day ended with a physio session with Emily in the basement playroom. They worked on standing up from a bench and then taking steps, they did lots of stretching sitting with her Gaitors and they took some steps with the ski boots. Madison is working on saying to herself “STEP…FREEZE” to try and slow down her steps and think about her balance. Emily also helped Madison paint and play with her play dough. 

This is Madison waiting at the front window for Emily. Every Monday she waits in the same spot. Shes always so excited to play with Emily.