Sunday, January 23, 2011


Wow, life has gotten so busy.

Josh is back to work visiting his ships, counseling crisis situations, and being a daddy & husband full time. I am on my way in my next master's course in my program learning all about "inclusion classrooms" (where special education students are mainstreamed with general education kiddos). This topic is super interesting to me (in comparison to my last class that was so boring-- it was all statistics and snoooze... look I fell asleep just trying to describe it). :)

Bella is getting ABA 3-4 times a week and starts Early Learning this week Tuesday. I am coming to realize that when they say "Bella" has intervention, they really mean "Annie" has intervention. Basically, they are training me (and Josh through me) to teach Bella. Because she's so young, she is getting in home services which is wonderful. I can be in my PJ's and drink my coffee while working with them and her. These therapists probably think I don't own clothes other than sweats and old boy shirts. Oh, well:) At least I brush my teeth... well, then drink coffee which cancels that out...

We found out that we will be here 18 more months for sure. We have decided that we are going to move from Norfolk to Virginia Beach. Mostly because our church is out there, her therapists are from there, and well... it's just got more to offer for our little girl! I've loved "some" things about Norfolk... especially how close to the ocean we are. I will not miss the men trying to sell me "tazer guns" at the local supermarket though... or maybe I will? We are on the house hunt right now for an awesome rental. We want to get a place with a HUGE play room where we can do all of Bella's therapies. So, we shall see. Feb. 28th is going to come fast!

Oh, Josh and I are going to........ wait for it........DISNEY WORLD! Yep, bought our tickets. Done deal! After all, it is the "happiest place on earth". Josh's wonderful mother Carol is coming to watch Bella for 5 days. I'm not sure how I will leave my girl for that long but I know one thing, Josh and I need a little "break" or a "rendezvous" if you will. It's pretty much been crazy since Josh returned and all of our emotions have been geared toward Bells. We had planned on going to Italy this spring but have decided the distance and cost with Bella's prognosis and treatment is not feasible. So, Disney it is.... and I am totally pumped. My back should be on the mend by then so i don't have to roll around in a hover round the entire time:) Hover rounds are pretty sexy if you didn't know... you can take them to the grand canyon (or so the commercial shows). Still, I'd like to walk.

Please keep the Earls in your prayers. The adjustment of having a child with autism has proven to be a bit harder than we thought. It's weird because as soon as she was diagnosed it just hit us from all sides. I feel like we've picked up most of the pieces and have some sort of normalcy but we will have days where we just hurt a little inside still. We've decided to remind ourselves that Bella's future was always meant to include this diagnosis. It helps to not think of a future that was never there to begin with. I'm not saying her future is not bright, it is ... it's just a different shade than I had originally planned. I'm sure it's like hot pink still:) She's a sassy thing! God is good all of the time.

God bless!


  1. Hi there,
    I love that you guys blog...I love being able to know how your wonderful family is doing. This is the first time I heard of Bella being diagnosed with autism. My heart broke as I read the struggles you all have faced. As a mother, I an only imagine how much it hurts to want to help your child and how hard it is when you see your child hurt. I'm glad I got caught up on things so I know how better to pray for you all. You are so right though...Bella has a bright future and before you knew she was in your womb, God had knew and none of this has caught Him by surprise. I love you and I know that God will give you and Josh the strength, patience, courage, and unspeakable peace that passes all understanding. He is with you now as the three of you embark on this journey. Love and prayers,

  2. Taking the steps you need to to help Bella is such a wonderful gift for her. I have also heard early therapy is great for her. GOD has given her to just the right parents. Even when you are feeling low and inadequate remember HE has numbered each of your days and those include the hard times and the good. HE loves you with an Everlasting Love and loves Bella that way too!

    I love you all and will continue to pray for you all. Your a gift to my family!!


  3. "'s just a different shade..."
    I have to say this is my favorite line in this whole post. It's so true though or so many things, isn't it? It's not how WE plan things in our lives, but how God plans them. You have such a good perspective and I continually learn from you as you are learning through this whole experience.