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May 2011 - Chris Schuette

Beanie Baby

May 10, 2011 | By | No Comments

Quick, take a look at this picture:

Yep, that’s a baby, all right.  More specifically, that’s Isla wearing a very cool hat that my friend, Jill Thiebault made.  Jill is the owner and Head Yarn Guru at Jilly Beanies, and she hand-crafts beautiful hats for people of all ages. Isla loves hers and is grateful it was there to keep her head warm all winter long.

I’ve actually known Jill since my 7-year tour of Madison Elementary School in the carefree days of the 1970s (and early 1980s, I guess.)  She’s a great person and she is very good at what she does.  Go check out Jill’s website and see her amazing work.

Tell her Isla sent you.

The Next Step

May 6, 2011 | By | 9 Comments

Anyone who has read this blog knows I’m a huge fan of casual, socially-acceptable expletives; it’s a hell of a way to make a point.  Well, I’ve a had a crap-load of stuff going on in the last few months:  Work, Music, Workmusic, and baby stuff.  As you can imagine, the baby stuff has been the most challenging.

Our little daughter Isla is almost 11 months old and it seems like only yesterday that I was a strapping young go-getter, strapping another young go-getter into her car-seat for the very first time.  I’ve learned a lot about being a dad, although off the top of head, I can’t recall much of it.

As I’ve mentioned before, Isla is deaf.  She can hear some, but not much.  In fact, subsequent tests confirm that she hears even less than we thought. To put it another way, her hearing is “way more lousier.” The hearing aids help, but they’re not the effective remedy we had hoped for, so Patty & I have made the decision to proceed with cochlear implants.  Isla will never hear the way Patty & I do, but she will hear more, and that will help with learning and speech development.

I should probably be more worried, but I’m either very optimistic or completely oblivious.  I’m understandably nervous about the procedure (as any parent should be,) but in the long run, I know this is going to be best for Isla.

A lot of people have commented the irony of me being a musician with a deaf child. I guess I don’t really dwell on that. I want Isla to experience as much music as she can, simply because I view it as a valuable part of the human experience.  But the way I see it, a deaf child with a musician father is pretty lucky.  Isla has a dad who understands sound and the role it plays in life. If she can’t experience a lot of it, I will do everything I can to fill in the gaps with art, nature, books and a ton of silent movies.

Patty & I make a great team, and like everything else in our lives, we’ll figure this out together.  We’re also thankful for the incredible support network we’ve developed.  The teachers, medical professionals, friends, and family members have been invaluable as we try to provide the best life possible for Isla.

I’ve been away for awhile, but I’m back.  I’ll keep you all posted…and this time, I mean it.

Pew Pew Pew