Sunday, May 31, 2009

Thomas the Train, Out of Town Friends, Sick and a Housekeeper

I can't believe it's been almost a week since I last posted. Time has flown by - I can't even keep up with what day it is.

Last Thursday we had a houseful of friends for swimming and grilling hot dogs. It was a fun afternoon. And the best part was my friend Jennifer and son Paul arrived from Texas! On Friday we just vegged out at the pool and let the kids swim. My friend Leslie and kids came over too. Then on Saturday we went to a birthday party at Pump It Up for a little girl at David's school. It was so much fun and his teacher Vicky was there. That night me, Jennifer and Leslie went out shopping and ate sushi!!! Sunday, Jennifer and I took the boys to Birmingham for the Thomas Stage Show - it was really good. Each night of Jennifer's visit we stayed up way too late visiting after the boys went to bed. I think we all need a vacation from the mini-vacation :).

The only downside of this was I picked up some type of yucky cold. It started with pain in my chest and moved into my head and gave me laryngitis. I finally have my voice back today, but still don't sound like myself and still have a productive chest cough. Thankfully the kids missed it and so far I am the only one sick. I thought for sure David had something as well, but he was seen by our ENT Monday for a follow-up to his surgery and he was in great shape!

Exciting news for me this week - our housekeeper started today!! Dan and I have been kicking around what type of help we felt could benefit us most and save my back and give me more time for our business and we decided a housekeeper was the way to go. She is wonderful!! She will come everyday from 10-4.

Still no word on Emily's ultrasound of her thyroid - I am going with the "no news is good news" mind-set. I will follow-up tomorrow though because we have an appointment with our pediatrician for David's 4-year-check-up.

I'll try and post some pictures tonight of the Thomas show!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Summer "Vacation" - Not :)

Who ever said summer was for resting, etc. didn't/doesn't have kids or either doesn't do much fun stuff with them LOL. Summer is not even a week old and it's already wearing me out - in a good way, mind you, no complaining. Just amazement that we are so busy. How does it happen - one day you sit around the house doing chores and wishing it was warm enough to swim or play outside or wishing the bigger kids were out of school to play with the little kids and then bam it's here.

We are spending everyday swimming with friends, having friends over, eating dinner with friends, grocery shopping more than usual because the kids are here and going to the doctor more than usual because my family seems to attract bizarre health things. We are also having out of town company three times in June and a variety of parties to attend and a trip to Birmingham to see Thomas the Train and I still haven't finalized our actual vacation plans. We may be to busy with all this other stuff to go on vacation - HA HA. And somewhere in there Dan and I are having a short romantic weekend for ourselves for our anniversary. And can't forget that Emily has dance camp at Auburn and David has 2 bible schools. Whew - everyday I am adding something to the calendar.

Oh we saw the kids pediatrician yesterday and she said that Emily's T4 level was elevated and that is indicative of of hyper-thyroidism. There are a few things they will have to rule out of the "better safe than sorry" side of things and we are being referred to a Pediatric Endocrinologist at Children's in Birmingham. There are some concerning things about it all and we'll have to get used to it, become better educated, etc. She'll still lead a perfectly long and normal life just have to be treated/monitored forever. The next step is an ultrasound of they thyroid - we go Monday afternoon for that.

Also - I think I forgot to tell you guys that David is NOT playing t-ball after all. It didn't take me long to realize he is not ready and not mature enough yet. He was the youngest and technically was a few months shy of being old enough, but they let him register anyway. So we'll just wait until next spring when he's almost 5.

Well off to the outside. Hayden's here, Hope coming later, Leslie and kids on the way and Jennifer & Paul en route from Texas. Fun day!!!!!!!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Emily's Surgery

Emily went for pre-op yesterday and her mom mentioned to the ENT that she thought her throat was a little swollen. He thought it was thyroid and said he would run a test(s). Since they were taking blood and running routine tests anyway for pre-op it was essentially a non-event. Well yesterday evening Emily's mom was here picking her up around 5:30 and she got a call from the ENT's nurse reporting that he did not want to do the surgery today because her levels were elevated and that she needs to see the pediatrician today. So I just talked to the pediatrician's office - they have received the report of the test results from the ENT's office and we have an appointment for this afternoon.

I'm sure all is fine and routine, but instead of praying for surgery today how about some prayers for this!!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Quick Family Update

Dan - doing great. No signs whatsoever of the cancer - last scan showed him still to be in remission. Fatigue totally gone now and taste is back to normal. He is working on our backyard and the end is near (finally for those of you that know he's been working on this for YEARS!!). I can't wait to share pictures and have everyone over when he gets done.

Business - going well. BUSY BUSY BUSY!!! We are not going to purchase the large 125-unit. But we are still negotiating on the 22 and 40 unit. He wants to meet with Dan again today. He wants to sell alot more than we want to buy :).

Emily - her summer officially started the end of last week and she brought it in with a bang. Shopping for new clothes and sleeping late. What more could a 13-year-old want. She has been wanting to swim, but I swear Alabama is turning into Washington state we have had rain everyday forever now. We could use your prayers tomorrow - Emily is having surgery on her nose. She has constant nosebleeds and has had a procedure done once before, but it didn't work. This time they will take a piece of skin from behind her ear and put it into her nose where the hole is that the bleeding is coming from. We have to be at the hospital at 7:00 tomorrow morning. A side note during this - her thyroid seems to be swollen and tender and they are testing the blood they drew today during pre-op.

David - school ended with a bang for David on Friday. They had bouncy houses and banana splits at school. So that party aside with all his birthday parties has had him on "cloud 9". He is back to his normal self from the tonsil ordeal, but his ear(s) don't seem to be. When his tubes are clogged he tells me his ear is closed, well he's telling me that again and also saying they hurt. I'm just at my wits end with this. We have a follow-up on Monday with the ENT to talk about the bony tumor in the ear canal so he will check his ears then.

My dad & Barbara - he is improving everyday. Barbara is superwoman when it comes to her knee. A few days post-op and they said she was doing as well as someone 3-weeks post-op. But she now has pneumonia, a common side effect of course after surgery and hospitalization, but that doesn't make it any less miserable!! Thank heavens for Angie there taking care of them.

Me - staying busy with the kids, work and the house and dealing with my back. I don't feel like talking about my back because there is no point, but I will tell you it is not good!! My wonderful friend Leslie has been working on getting my house organized and cleaned up. She is so awesome.

*my friend Jennifer and her son Paul are coming to visit!!! They will be here Thursday afternoon. I can't wait.
*I am working on our vacations for this summer and next year and getting frustrated with school schedules, holidays, dance team schedule, etc. I'll get it worked out eventually :) and we'll do the beach this summer for our big trip and probably Six Flags and maybe the Georgia Aquarium for our small trips and next year we'll do Disney again for our big trip and a small trip to the beach.
*Since work is increasing and when David starts real school this fall I will take on even more and since my back is a problem - we are hiring a housekeeper to come in everyday and do a variety of things around here to help me. I am starting the interview process today.

Aside from this rain we have been spending alot of time lately playing with friends and swimming. Having good friends and a pool are the best!! Here are a couple of pictures from the pool.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Birthday Parties Abound

David is a pretty lucky kid, but also pretty typical ,I think of this social period that we live in. He had 3 birthday parties. Crazy huh!?! The main party was at Pump-It-Up and we invited everyone and it was a blast. The second event was cupcakes at his preschool on the actual day of his birthday. The third event was at my dad's - a family event for his and David's birthday (they are a day apart). None of my family were able to come to Pump-It-Up this year for a variety of reasons so we all celebrated at dad's. I have tons of pictures to share with you guys of the parties. As you look through the pictures one thing to note is the amazing cake - my friend Lauren made it. First of all it was so darn cute it looked like a magazine and second of all it tasted great. She was also smart enough to suggest splitting the layers and freezing it so I could use it for two of the parties - and I did and it worked GREAT!!!

Here are the shots from the Pump-It-Up party. What a fun place!!

Well somewhere I also have shots from the family party at my dad's on Sunday, but I have "lost" my camera. I'm sure (thankfully) that between here and my dad's and my car it is somewhere and not truly lost, but I haven't put my hands on it yet. So when I do find it I will share those pictures.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Happy Birthday Little Man!!

I started this post the morning of David's birthday and am just now able to finish it, we've been busy. Good busy though - I'll fill you in on all that in another post.

May 19th, 2009 - 10:30am
I can't believe that by this time in the morning, 4-years-ago today, David was here. I had an early morning c-section, without incident, and our little guy came into the world and into our hearts! I don't remember much about that first day after the c-section. Meds, reaction to meds, meds for the reactions, etc. had me a little groggy. Dan was able to spend alot of time with him and do the whole first bath and all that!

The next day I woke up alone, called down to the nursery for David and they brought him to me. I sat in the rocking chair and just held him; Saying to myself - this is my son and I fell in love that instant. I know some people bond at birth, some later, some much later - well we bonded that morning as we sat there and rocked and talked over a bottle of formula. I also realized that precious morning that he had my mother's eyes - true blue. Since she is no longer with us that meant the world to me and still does, since they haven't changed!!!

Here is a picture of David at just 5-weeks, one of our mother/baby shots. Everybody tells you it goes so fast and you don't believe them, until you are there. I promise you these have been the fastest years of my life. But also the best years of my life!! There is nothing better than being a mom. Thank you God for blessing me with this amazing little boy.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Oh why can't it always be spring!!

All my life I have said that fall is my favorite season. The smell, the cool air and most of all college football!! And while fall will always have a special place in my heart I have switched and now say there is nothing better than spring.

This is the time of year when it is almost sinful to be allowed to stay home with your child. David and I are spending hours each day outside by the pool. Swimming, bubbles, swingset, sandbox, etc. whatever strikes his fancy. I play a little with him and do alot of relaxing under the umbrella and reading. It does require getting up a little earlier and staying up a little later to get all my work done that I normally do during the day, but who cares. The day's are so fun. We are also blessed to have other dear friends in this same position so we have company for this leisure and pool variety. I am honestly cracking myself up right now - who knew sheer fun could be so heady.

Babies abound with my friends. There is a new girl on the way and I have already been shopping and my other finds out today what her little precious bundle will be. I can't wait to hold these sweet little ones.

David has finally turned the corner with the tonsils. Yesterday was the first day he resembled his old self. This is just in time for his birthday party tomorrow evening at Pump It Up, or as he calls it - the bouncy house. He will actually be able to go to school next week for the last few days before summer break. He's been talking about his teacher and his best friend alot lately.

Emily has spent the week doing "boring" stuff in her opinion. They have been studying for year-end 7th grade exams. They'll take these next week. School's out for her on Thursday and she can't wait. Between school and dance practice lately she's been really busy so I know she's ready for sleeping late and swimming!! We pick her up this afternoon from school and David is really excited.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Borrowing From the Regulars

Quick update on David. He has slept almost the whole night for the last two nights. What an amazing thing that is. And I didn't have to resort to the Phenegran to make him sleep. I have finally gotten him to take his meds again and with the combination of steroids and regular pain medicine he is much better. I can definitely tell he's still not all the way yet, but closer. The steroid 'scrip was only for 3 days - today being the 3rd day. Today is the 9th day so I am hoping tomorrow he can go to school!!

Okay - now onto my regular post. I have started following many blogs in the last couple of months and let me tell you there are some amazing women out there. They write so well. I surely don't have that talent :), but I still like to blog. It's a pretty fun hobby. I have seen a few things out there that I would like to borrow - like topics, questions, list ideas, etc. I hope that is OK and doesn't violate blogger etiquette!!

The first one is a list of topics/questions for thought by Heather over at Madame Rubies - Her responses are really well written.

I hope she doesn't mind that I'm borrowing her idea. So here goes:

Outside my window... it is a dark and rainy morning. I should crawl back in bed since the rest of the house is still asleep, but there is something about drinking coffee and listening to the rain without David underfoot that is sheer bliss! I know he will be jumping to turn his weather wheel when he wakes up. He is following in the footsteps of cousin Zach :)

I am thinking... how much I don't like to talk on the phone. Isn't that weird. I like texting and e-mailing and even sending actual cards and letters, but I don't like the phone. I think it's because I am always busy and I resent the intrusion :) - silly, I know, especially for a Southern female!!

I am thankful for... God and the miracles he's worked in my family with my husband and father. The children he's blessed me with. The home and jobs and life he's led me to. The friends I've encountered and are no more and the ones who are steady. The new family I gained almost 10 years ago. For my Bible study group.

From the kitchen... thoughts on the dinner menu; thawing center cut pork-chops; but there is coffee and Krispy Kreme donuts! Need I say more.

I am creating... not much in this area right now. I do have the plans and tools and ideas for my scrapbooks, just not the time and motivation. I guess my new organization and time management stuff could go in here. I am trying to find that "groove" of work time and family time. You would think since I work at home it would be easy, but actually it's alot harder because there are no boundaries and no black & white.

I am going... to the grocery store today and taking David to buy cleats for t-ball (when/if it stops raining - we don't anything bad enough to have to get out in this). He also wants his own bat, since of course the other boys had them at practice last night, but I think that is a little much. I need to see how much they cost though. Last night we went to our first practice and I really liked the coach and other parents. The boys actually did little drills and stuff - like a real practice, which I liked, but hadn't expected since these are little ones.

I am reading... a variety of books on my amazing Kindle. I just finished the "Idiot Girl and The Flaming Tantrum of Death" and "Gods in Alabama"; I think next will be the "Magician". I usually read one a day or every couple of days. Books are my drug of choice :)

I am hoping... for David to continue to improve; my dad and step-mom to be able to truly enjoy their beach trip later this week; Dan to not have to deal with such grief from his key employee; my "sister's" mom to have an uneventful chemo day.

I am hearing... rain, Fox News and Teddy (my boxer dog) snoring.

Around the house... chaos!! Being stuck at home and busy with David we look like a tornado has picked up thousands of trains and cars and scattered them everywhere. Also there are countless loads of clothes - thankfully clean.

One of my favorite things... hmmm - one. And since it says thing I won't go with the obvious and say family. I will have to say - well I have sat here for a few minutes and I honestly cannot decide between a cup of coffee and my Kindle, so I guess there is a tie.

A few plans for the rest of the week... taking David back to school - maybe/hopefully!! Working for me and a little grocery shopping. Emily is here this weekend and David's birthday party is Saturday. Swimming (for the kids anyway).

Monday, May 11, 2009

Brighter Days Ahead... We Pray!

Last night continued as I described in the last post. It is really wearing me down, the exhaustion and the feelings you have when you watch your little one hurting. We slept in and actually had about a 4 & 1/2 hour stretch of solid sleep. That helped me feel alot better. I finally came to a compromise with David to have a little medicine with his juice so that helped him wake up in much better spirits.

I called the ENT's office and spoke to the nurse on call. She said all of this was 100% normal and no matter what I had to do he NEEDS this pain medicine and she said he also needs steroids for a few days. She called in the prescription and we ran out for a minute to pick it up. He did not want to take it and I wanted to get it in him right away - not wait for him to drink some juice and it be diluted. So, very sternly, I told him if he didn't take it we were going back to the hospital and they were putting the burning medicine in his ears like he had at the beach last year. He was terrified and took the medicine. He HATES HATES HATES HATES medicine in his ears and believe me he's had TONS of it in his 4 short years. The nurse recommended telling him we were going back to the hospital for another IV and shots if he didn't take it, but I said that won't work because since he's still so young they knock him out with meds and gas before they put the IV in - so he has no recollection of that pain. She said I hate to lie to them and to worry them, but in this case he needs the meds so you have to do it.

We also have Phenegran suppositories that they gave us from day one. I am going to use one of those tonight to help him sleep. He needs a solid nights rest so he can heal and mommy needs one so she can keep this up :)

I have Bible study tonight and I am so glad for that time!! I just pray he's resting peacefully when I get back. Thanks for all of your prayers and kind words and e-mails.


The Boy and His Tonsils

I want my happy baby back!!!!!
Wow - who knew this would be so hard and that instead of getting better it gets worse. I thought we were in great shape based on David's recovery the first few days - not that they were easy, just seemed what I expected. Well it turns out those were a cakewalk compared to how things are now.
He is miserable!!! And to top it off he is absolutely refusing any and all meds. I know plenty of "tricks" for getting medicine in (considering he's had enough ear infections to be on the 4th set of tubes) and I have even have resorted to force, but NOTHING is working now!!! During the day he is pretty lethargic with bouts of energy and a few crying spells. A new complaint that started last night is his stomach hurts - you can't touch it or even let a shirt or blanket touch it. It lasts about 30 minutes each time. Then the worst of all is night time. Last night and so far this night he is waking about every two - three hours crying uncontrollably, drooling and shivering. It is so heart wrenching - I laid there a little while ago holding him just praying my heart out and trying not to cry. Needless to say he won't be going to school tomorrow.
I also fear he is becoming dehydrated - based on urine output and food/fluid intake, which is essentially none in both areas. I plan to call the ENT in the morning and if I am not satisfied with what they say then I will call his Pediatrician.
I did find a blog that made me feel a little better. She wrote about her child's experience and several commenter's told their stories as well. The consensus being:
  • this is a lot harder than any anticipates and than any doctors tell you
  • pain peaks at day 5-7
  • turning the corner happens around day 9 or 10
  • dehydration is common
  • the prescription pain medicine has alcohol in it so it burns - which is why the kids won't take it (I'm afraid that's what has given David this new fear of all meds; I wish I would have known that to start with - UGH)
  • even though your child probably has a high pain tolerance from MULTIPLE ear and/or throat infections - this will still be HELL

If you are interested in the blog and comments, here is the link:

Well - I'm back to my vigil of dozing and comforting. All I have is a kind voice, two arms and kisses and cold juice. I pray that pain settles and that he will not refuse meds again tomorrow.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day

I hope all you wonderful mothers, grandmothers, aunts, sisters, friends, etc. are having a special day. You all impact children and help them on their journey through life. The day is bittersweet for me with the loss of my mom, mother-in-law and grandmothers, but also a special day as my children give me sweet kisses and my husband treated me to a girlfriend beach trip last weekend! I spent some time this morning reflecting on things I do the same, worse and better than my mother. Sweet memories and it's nice to see that I do most things the same and just a few worse & better. I always knew I had a wonderful role model and it's proven itself as I raise my kids.

David is recovering as expected from his surgery earlier this week. Not eating much, but he is staying hydrated. The pain comes and goes. When it comes it's bad - he'll start sobbing and shaking and shivering and run a mild fever. Not much makes that better except mommy. Last night he woke up 3 times doing this, but so far today it's not happened once. He is lying on his little "couch" in my study watching TV as I type this.

Last night was a pleasant evening of friends and family. Dan's brother and wife came over and our friends Leslie and Trey & kids. We (well the kids and men) swam and grilled hamburgers and hot dogs and sat outside to eat. The weather was great. I said one time it was pleasant and David starts looking around for a present HA HA.

Today is a lazy day. David and slept late and Dan worked on some project (he's always building something). Then I have played on the computer and played with David. Next I am going to read and have a cup of coffee.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

David's Surgery

Off to the hospital bright and early with a sad little boy crying for chocolate milk that is not allowed. The other 364 days of the year he wakes up with his milk, today "no cigar". Then we arrive at our strange place well before time to wake up on a normal day. He's given up on the chocolate milk and now going with I'm hungry - my child who doesn't eat and never says I'm hungry - desperate for something. Mommy is good for comfort, but not really smiles. Grandma arrives with a surprise and there are the smiles :). Short-lived and with a little grumpiness attached, but smiles none the less. Now back to a little room and a bed, which for some reason he just knows is for him since he climbs right in. Then the gown, which was non-eventful. Next a variety of ladies come trouping in - nurses, nurse anesthetist, anesthesiologist, or nurse, etc. I think he's deciding this isn't such a bad deal after all. They are all nice, have stickers, hug him, tell him he's cute and they love his eyes... which my flirt of a son flutters to them at every opportunity. Dr. Bowman pops his head in a couple of times and that's ok - no fear of him, he's just Aiden's dad (friend at school). Then he drinks the happy medicine and he is laughing at Grandma and squealing and all is good. They come then and wheel him away as we smile and say see you in a few minutes, love you...

I didn't cry, because it's not my thing, but boy is that a hard thing to do. Knowingly sending your child off for surgery, basically elective surgery at that. The mild risk doesn't bother me as much as the pain I am causing him. The pain he won't understand and mommy won't be able to kiss away. And why... will it even work? This is my babies 4th surgery on these blasted ears and I've added in tonsil removal in a desperate attempt to make him well and pain free and infection free. Will it work? Only God knows the answer to that. All I know is yet again I've subjected him to pain on a hope and a prayer.

About 20 minutes go by and a lady, who I assumed was in the business dept., called my name. I went into the door she called me from (office side, not recovery side) and waved to the others to stay put (Barbara, Dan and Emily). I assumed it was just another insurance question or something. Then I'm in a hallway following her and she leads me to a conference room and says Dr. Bowman will be right in. Oh... well heck, I should have had Dan come with me. Then my panic sets in. The last time I sat in a little room and waited for Dr. Bowman to come in with normal routine, good news - he came in and told me Dan had stage 4 cancer... I didn't realize how scared I still was, my stomach was flipping and doing butterflies, I saw spots. I tried to pray, but I couldn't. It was not a great 5 minutes.

He comes in then and is all smiles - whew, "thank you God!!!!". Surgery was routine, no problems, David did great. Blood loss less than a thimble, everything fine. Just a note - tonsils were very large. The only out of the ordinary thing was an Osteoma in the ear canal. He said they are normally very slow growing and he just can't believe he missed it in clinic. They are non-cancerous bony growths that typically have to be removed because they can grow large enough to close the ear canal. He said he didn't remove it while in there since 1) he didn't have the kit and mostly, 2) he has not done but a few and would rather his senior partner (the ear guru) do it. So we will follow-up with him after the current situation is healed and go from there.

Next back in the waiting room to wait for the recovery nurse to call us. She does and Emily and I go back first. I hear my baby crying as soon as the doors open. He is not happy. I know, I know - perfectly normal. His throat hurts, he's disoriented and agitated from the anesthesia and doesn't know where he is and strange women are holding him still. It still breaks your heart a little to hear it. I get back there and they ask me to hold him, which of course I was planning to do anyway! I sing to him and rub his back and he passes back out. This happens several times over the next 30 minutes. Emily, Dan and Barbara all take turns coming in and then Barbara and Dan leave and Em and I stay for the duration. (They only let 2 people back there and David was not up for company so there really wasn't a need for them to stay.)

The only concern was the amount of blood in his mouth. I didn't expect it to be that much and apparently neither did the nurses. Dr. Bowman came back in and he wasn't happy with it either. We discussed going back in and cauterizing or whatever it is they do to stop the bleeding. We first decided to try and rinse his mouth out and see if we could get his mouth clean and then watch and see how much more blood came. Not an easy process, but we managed to do it with a little water and a towel. 45 minutes later - no more blood!!! So all was fine in that regard. After more instructions and IV removal we were on our way home (or to the pharmacy 1st).

David has really done well since we got home at 11:30. He has had milk and juice and a little ice cream. He keeps asking for random foods, which is bizarre for my non-eating child, but I just distract him and change the subject because nothing he has asked for is soft. I am trying to really stay on top of the pain medicine and give it on schedule. If I've learned nothing else from Dan's ordeal and my back - it's give pain meds on schedule. Don't let the pain get bad first and then give the meds, because you will NEVER catch up. He has only slept a little, but he has not moved from my bed since we got home. Thank heavens for digital cable and noggin.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Whew, It's Been a While!

Sorry it's been so long since updating. I have a new resolution to stay on top of things better. We have just been busy dealing with a few things and I haven't taken the time to update. I'm going to make this a picture update, because it's easier to catch up that way :-).

There is one actual update, prayer request though. Tomorrow David will be getting his 4th set of ear tubes and getting his tonsils out. Please pray that all goes well. I will update soon with how he's doing.
The first group of pictures is an Easter Egg Hunt. Our friends Trey & Leslie invited us and the festivities were at Trey's mom's. She had a wonderful day set-up for the kids and David really enjoyed himself.

This group of pictures are the kids hamming it up with their Easter basket goodies.

This group of pictures is of Emily's actual birthday and an Easter egg decorating party at Leslie's.

This group of pictures is our annual family Easter celebration and egg hunt at my dad and Barbara's and also another birthday party for Emily and her cousin, Heather.

The last few pictures are the before and after of our new teenager, Emily. She turned 13 on this past birthday and my present to her was new "hair" and her first make-up. We made a big day of it with lunch and shopping.