Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Cooper's House Update

Our HOA met with Tiff and George tonight and here is the update:

The meeting is over. No decision yet. The facts are these (1) the board upheld their decision that the house was in violation of Andover Forests bylaws. (2) They have suspended the fines and no fines will be imposed on us until a final decision is reached.(3) We have to submit supplemental materials (Therapist letters,... doctors letters, medical records) that in fact Cooper needs his house. They want to know why Cooper can't climb a tree house or use a swing. Essentially we have to prove that he is disabled and has CP. When all of the paperwork is submitted (we have three weeks) the board will meet again and decide what to do. This will most likely take place in January. I really appreciate everyones support. I do have a simple request. It's Christmas. Cooper gets to keep his house through the holidays. It's the time of year to love thy neighbor. Although there may not be a permanent resolution to this problem as of yet, I would appreciate everyone to focus their energy towards positive thoughts for Cooper and not waste their time and energy on negative emails/phone calls to the HOA. We may not agree but it's the season of love and forgiveness. For Cooper's sake, let's take the high road. I really appreciate each and everyone of you. We wouldn't even have had a chance if it hadn't been for you. I'll keep you updated. But until then, THANK YOU and enjoy your holiday season! Love, Tiff and Coop
I haven't known Tiff very long but I can safely say she is one of the nicest people I know. I am going to try to endeavor during this holiday season to follow her example. This story isn't over and I'll keep you posted in the New Year. I think our HOA believes they can convince our neighborhood and community to forget about this story if they can put some time between now and their final decision. I pray that in that time they are able to see reason and change their minds. If not, they are seriously mistaken about our neighborhood forgetting about this. We do and will continue to support Cooper's House! So here's to a Very Merry Christmas to you all and especially Cooper and the Veloudis family! :)

Friday, December 2, 2011

Cooper's House

A friend of mine made me aware of a situation yesterday. There is a family in my neighborhood who has a 3 year old son with Cerebral Palsy. For physical therapy purposes they had a playhouse built for him last spring. They have since been informed by our Homeowner's Association board that they must remove the house. They are currently facing $50 per day fines as well as a lien on their home.

I do not know this family personally. I have exchanged e-mails with them to let them know of our support and in an effort to find out what is going on. I have also communicated with our board in support of this family and finding a solution.

If you follow the links below you will see that this is a beautiful playhouse. I have difficulty understanding why this is different than any number of much larger swingsets that reside in our neighborhood, including my own yard. Especially because it is used for physical therapy purposes and because this child cannot play on a traditional swingset due to his disability.

I am embarrassed to say this situation in occurring in my neighborhood but I want to bring light to it and encourage anyone who reads this blog to sign the Twitter petition and/or like the Cooper's House Facebook page.

As a neighbor I fully support this family in their effort to keep Cooper's house. Please help share this story so our HOA is forced to reconsider their position! Thank you for your support!


The letter on Facebook that was originally posted for the neighbor's benefit:

Please sign the Twitter Petition in support of Cooper's House:

Our local NBC station picked up the story last night and you can watch their coverage here:

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Oreo the Pony

While we had multiple forms of entertainment for Missy K's 3rd birthday, the most excitement by far was Oreo, the pony. This was so much fun! We will definititely have to do it again! I only wish I had thought to have a Cowgirl party for Reagan when she was younger! :) Here's my big girl on her first of many rides on Oreo during her birthday party.One happy 3 year old birthday girl!My sweet cowgirls! :)As soon as Reagan got on the horse she began waving her hat and calling "Yee-haw!" Oreo trying to snack on Missy K's hatWhen Kennedy wasn't riding Oreo she was leading him for everyone elseReaganHeidiAnna MeaganMacyMissy KUncle Chuck did his best to convince Jackson to try a ride on Oreo but while Jackson was happy to pet Oreo there was no way he was getting on!!! Not even to ride with his big sister. After all the kids had taken turns individually they decided to take some turns together as well. Here are Heidi and Missy K together.Heidi and ReaganMissy K rode and rode and rode and everytime she had the sweetest smile on her face!Holden agreed with Jackson's assessment of Oreo - no need to ride looking was just fine. :) What a smile and happy b-day girl!Kennedy and LaurenKennedy and Uncle BarryUncle Barry, Kennedy, Lauren and MichaelI just couldn't decide between all these sweet faces! We could not have given Kennedy any better gift that this pony at her party she throughly enjoyed and loved this experience!Missy K was so worn out that she literally fell asleep on her last ride of the pony - how precious is this?After Kennedy got off the horse Grammy snuggled her right up and Missy K took a nap while everyone else ate supper. Sweet baby girl! Oreo's arrival

Kennedy riding Oreo

Leading Oreo

Thank you again for everyone who came and made Missy K's birthday celebrations so much fun!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Missy K's 3rd Birthday Party

We decided to have Kennedy's 3rd birthday party earlier in November this year in order to accomodate family and friends visiting (her actual birthday was the day before Thanksgiving). We also had a horse theme, complete with a pony, and we thought we might have a better chance of good weather at the beginning vs the end of November. The weather was beautiful and we had an awesome weekend. Thank you for everyone who came and shared it with us! Here's the birthday girl with her green (her very favorite color) horse cake and one of her presents. The two birthday girls. :) Kennedy missed being Kelly's birthday buddy by just a few daysMost of the adults at the party enjoying the corral while the kids played on the trampoline, leaf pile and swingset. From left to right: Grand-Dad & Kennedy, Dorothy, Dan, Grammy & Jackson, Chuck, Julie, Kelly Charlie, Tim, Barry and Lauren.Missy K with the decorations in front of the house, the sign says "Welcome to Kennedy's Happy Hoedown"Our entryway decorationsMissy K's O-K CorralAunt Arla gave us 3 horses so we could create a Pony Corral for Missy K's party Reagan started waving her hat in the air shouting "Yee-haw!" - Ride 'm cowgirl!Anna with Ferdinand the Bull (Aunt Arla gave this to us as well for the party - love it!)A rousing horse/bull race :)This was Jackson's favorite horse because not only does it make sound it's mouth moves up and downBesides Kennedy's "Feeding Trough" we also had a "Waterin' Hole"Instead of a large cake we had a smaller one for Missy K along with cupcakes, candy apples, caramel apples, smores and ice cream. Plenty of dessert to go around! :)Grammy with her baby boyGrammy and Grand-Dad enjoying the hoedown!Farmer Jackson - what a face! lol :)Grammy with her birthday cowgirlAunt Julie and Uncle Chuck being silly with Missy K on the floor lol :)Aunt Julie and Missy ReaganCowgirl ReaganMommy and Reagan ready to party! :)Jackson was Uncle Chuck's little buddy all weekend long!Missy K climbing a tree with LaurenWe made a leaf pile (or mountain) for the kids to jump in through out the afternoonThe kids also loved jumping on the trampoline, backrow from left to right: Michael, Chaz and Megan; front row left to right: Reagan, Macy, Heidi and AnnaThey spent a lot more time looking like this than the picture above - things were a bit wild...Love that hair Holden!Nothing like tackling your big sister! :)Best buddies playing with tractors and trucksRoasting hotdogs and brats for supperReagan, doing her best to eat a candy apple - because we'd never made them before Kelly and I thought they would be better with additional candy coatings especially since we had extra. They may have tasted good, but they were so impossibly hard you couldn't bite into them to find out!A super cute LaBar cowboy and girl! Yee-haw! :)Time for some birthday cake!Thank you to everyone for all the presents for Missy K. Here she is with her new American Girl Doll, Kaya, from Grammy and Grand-Dad, her American Girl Doll horse from us, and her beautiful new princess dress from the Hamlin's. Thank you again everyone! The clean-up crew :) Grand-Dad was trying to clean-up and Jackson was seriously determined to help!The girls rolling UP the stairs for bedThank you to everyone who made Missy K's birthday party so special! We had an awesome day and weekend! :)