Friday, September 30, 2005

A crowning day

Fridays are usually pretty busy for us, we have toddler gym in the morning then we're off to the mall to hang out with friends for playtime, lunch and shopping. Today was no exception. Abi obliged me by snoozing while we shopped for some fall shoes for Andrew. I really wanted another pair of those cool swede slip ons by Lands End from Sears, but they were out of his size. Instead we found a very nice pair of brown leather shoes. A bit dressier, but still casual for jeans. And VERY little boy. I love them and so does Andrew. He had to walk around in them for a bit after we got them before getting back into the stroller. He was so proud, he strutted around a bit. So cute.

While at the mall, we made our weekly stop in the A Dollar Store of course. This week Andrew picked out turtles instead of frogs. He's had a great time with them this afternoon. I found some sparkly pipe cleaners so I tossed them on the counter. Andrew didn't realize I got them and was very excited to see them this evening. He asked me to make him a crown. Of course Abi had to have one too!

We rounded out our day by taking a trek to BJ's. It was time for kid supplies... diapers, formula, "chicken nuts". You know, the truckload size packages. Good stuff.

Now everyone is home and tucked into bed. I love my beautiful children. The best news is IT'S FRIDAY!!!!! Daddy's home for the weekend!

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Home again

Mom just called me from her house. She sounded better already and is looking forward to a good night's sleep with no one to take her temperature, give her a breathing treatment or check her incision. My grandmother, her mom, is bringing lunch over. She has mixed feelings about that... long story. My brother has been in Memphis this week for a special computer school and is going to be coming through tomorrow night and will spend the night with them. I'm so glad... and so jealous. I want to be there so much!

Unexpected happies

Yesterday was such a challenging day for me. A dear friend even noticed that I was not myself and twice asked, "are you ok?" I guess she didn't believe my "yes" reply the first time. Good reason, I was really struggling. I just HATE when one of my children is feeling poorly and I can't make it better. Well today is going much better so far. I have Abi in the sling with me now... just can't bear to put her down after the day we had.

First unexpected happy...
While she was napping earlier, I grabbed a cup of coffee and popped in a picture CD from my baby shower with Abi back in early July. I had not had a chance to check out the photos that my friend Tammy made. I was paging through, looking at the ladies from church and myself opening gifts and found this...

I had warm happy tears to see my sweet MG. That is a moment we've shared many times when people comment on just how much she looks like me. She loves to show them our little turned up noses, side to side. It is my most favorite picture ever now. I think my heart grew.

Second unexpected happy...
When I walked down the block to pick up Andrew from preschool, I was the last parent in the line so I got to talk to his teacher for a good while. I had wondered how it was going as he is the youngest in the "3 Year Old" class... since he will not turn 3 until next month. She said he was getting along fabulously! And that he is age approriate for everything they are doing and his skill level had matched or exceeded each activity so far. That was such great news! She also said his behavior has been near perfect and she LOVES his enthusiam when he wants to tell her something. Weeee! What a good boy he is! Then when we got home, I unpacked his backpack and found this...

Last week they made apple prints by stamping slices of fresh apples into paint. How fun... and how beautiful! I think we'll frame it and put it in his room!

Frazzled Wednesday

Yesterday was a crazy day. Poor Abi came down with Andrew's cold and in combination with the shots the day before, she was one UNhappy camper. We did make it out to the park for a playdate, but it was only by the skin of our teeth. I felt so badly for my little girl. She was totally miserable. Thankfully, when I finally got her to sleep last night, she slept through until 6am. She seems a bit better this morning, but warmish... I hope her fever from the cold/shots doesn't sky rocket.

Andrew is feeling loads better. He only has the stuffies now. He's been a sleeping machine this week though, as his body has fought the cold. Its been nice having him sleep a bit later in the mornings.

Better day...
Nana had an even better day on Wednesday. She will definitely be coming home today according to the doctor's visit yesterday. Dad went home last night so he could check on things and bring her portable oxygen tank to the hospital, so she'll have it for the trip home. Chemo will hopefully take care of the recurrent fluid build up and give her better breathing. And she'll start that in just about 2 weeks.

She's going to see about a wig if she's feeling up for an outing next week. The doc said she can expect to begin loosing her hair by the second chemo treatment, if not right after the first one. She's pretty chipper about it all though... what a trooper.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

2 months

Check up time...
Abi had her 2 month check-up this morning. She's growing like a weed, or a tree considering she's in the 90th percentile for both height and weight at 13 lbs, 5 oz and 23.5 inches! The doctor checked her over and pronounced her perfect. That's what a mama likes to hear! He was impressed with her head control as well.

Unfortunately it was shot time. She got two, one for each leg, poor girly. Thankfully they had the new combined DPT-HIB-Polio, which she had in the right leg. In the left she recieved her 2nd in the series of Hepatitis B.

Its not time for Abi to have solids yet, but mom had her first this morning since last Thursday. When I spoke with her in the early hours she was having waffles. Much better than the pureed vegetable soup and jello she was served yesterday. ICK.

She's feeling a tad bit better, after a very bad day yesterday. The allergic reactions to the meds have really been troublesome and she's gotten a nasty rash all over. They are giving her benadryl to ease the itchies, but its giving her little relief. She was able to get up, with some help, for a shower today thankfully.

They did a thoracentsis yesterday evening, removing the fluid that has built back up around her lungs. Mom said breathing is going MUCH better now. I could tell by her voice that she was much more on top of the pain management. And the weird scratchy voice is gone too... so I had to joke with her that she didn't sound like Sponge Bob anymore. I hope she appreciates my humor!

The doctor came with the pathology report on the tissue removed during the hysterectomy and look-see into her abdomen. He described the cancer cells as a garden variety so he's very hopeful they can get it into remission with chemo. That should begin within 2 weeks of her going home. And if things continue as well as they have in the last 12-18 hrs, they are looking at possibly Thursday for a date to be discharged. We're praying for that.

Monday, September 26, 2005

A froggy kind of day

On Friday we went to Park City as usual and we made our weekly trek to the One Dollar Store in the Boscov's wing. I know, I know its a bad thing to let a kiddo go pick out anything he wants... but its a dollar right? Anyway, Andrew picked out a bag of 5 frogs.
For a buck! That's twenty cents a frog. What mom could complain? Well he just loves his frogs. He's played with them most of the weekend. On Saturday he was in the kitchen while Don was making bottles for Abi and he placed this large acorn cap, collected for a walk a few weeks ago, on to this lovely frog's head and said, "Look Daddy, he's a painter!" Of course we think that he's brilliant for thinking of this. And it made us giggle too!

And speaking of froggy... Andrew had developed a nice case of laryngitus from his post nasal drip. And now Don is coming down with the same symptoms. Nana is of course froggy too, as I mentioned in the post about how she's feeling... her NG tube was removed and her throat is quite irritated.

Croak croak!

Getting up

And getting some things down...
Mom had an OK Sunday. She's not jumping up and down by any means. But her NG tube (the icky one that goes in the nose, down to the stomach to keep it empty) has been removed so she is so relieved. She was allowed some cranberry juice and jello yesterday and that stayed down so eating in the near future is looking promising. She joked with Dad yesterday about a steak. He kept wanting to grill her a steak before going in for surgery, but her appetite was so spare she didn't take him up on it. On Saturday she said, "I surely could use that ribeye now."

She did have a second reaction to her pain pump meds. On Saturday the morphine began giving her hives so they switched her to demoral. On Sunday the same thing happened with the demoral. So now they are going to nix the pain pump all together and go with oral meds. They are going to give percocet a go. Lets hope that works!

Her doctor was off on Sunday, but he'll be back in this morning. They did some xrays of her chest yesterday to get a look at the fluid around her lungs. She's eager to hear what the plan will be to remove it and alleviate the pressure. She's still on oxygen, and has been for weeks, since she can't get a good deep breath. We are all eager to hear what Monday brings.

Incidentally, Dad was threatening to have a Wade fit. He is notorious for these and its where I get my sassy hot-headedness from I guess. The nursing staff was stretched this weekend. He said he felt bad for the poor nurse who was caring for mom and about a million others all by herself. So he didn't pop her head off. But he plans to talk to the doc about it this morning and get to the bottom of it. Its probably going to take talking to a nurse supervisor. But if someone doesn't show up for work, what can you do?

Sweet Sleep

The house is quiet. There are no lights on except for the little red one on the coffee maker and this computer monitor. Ahhh ME TIME!

Little Miss Abi-cakes slept from 9pm until 5:30am. (Insert angelic music here.) I am so proud of her. She ate ALL DAY LONG yesterday. Which meant few naps. But her awake time, sparing the times she was demanding a bottle, were very happy and quite plentiful.

I think I could go climb a mountain! Notice I said "could" and not "will."

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Daddy duty

Up in the night...
Don is a sweetheart and likes to get up for Abi's night feeding on the weekend so he can give me a full night's sleep for 2 nights. Last night Abi got up a bit earlier than usual, around 2:45am instead of 3-4am. But he said she sucked 6 oz right down and drifted off immediately. What a good girl.

He was just getting settled for some good sleep when Andrew sounded off at about 4am. I knew right away from his voice that a cold was coming on. He had the raspy bark. Don beat me there though, so I let him see what Andrew needed as I laid listening. He was so tender with him, though Andrew was quite upset. He tried to settle him, then realized he need cold meds, so off they went down to the kitchen. Good old Triaminic nighttime. Then back up they came. I think he must have rocked him for a while, because I drifted back off to sleep after that. But it didn't last because he didn't want put down. And when daddy put him in the bed, Andrew decided it was mama's turn.

He yelped for me, and of course I obliged so we rocked and sang for a while. It took me convincing him he'd feel better with some sleep (how on earth did I manage that with this almost 3 year old?) and he laid down. I climbed back into the bed around 4:45am. We never heard a peep out of him until he came bounding down for the day at 7:30am. He feels pretty good this morning so I'm hoping this cold won't be too nasty.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

2 New Babies

No, not me...
We've been watching a squirrel that lives in the side support of the power pole out front of our home for a couple years. But recently we noticed that more than one seemed to be sticking its head out. It appears that the resident is female and she has new babies!

You can see mom at the top, then she turned around and called her little ones out. First one, then the other. Andrew will sit at the window as long as they are busy. I just love how fascinated he is with animals. Truthfully, we've all been mezmerized by them when they are active. They will stay out of the little hole in the top of the support as long as no one is around. But if a car goes by or someone walks down the sidewalk, they scamper back in.

The only drawback is that they run up to the top of the pole then across the power lines. I never know what kinds of treats I'll find on my car when they sit up on the lines and have dinner. Most recently it was the green outer skin of a several walnuts. What a mess!

I have a tooth berry

But I have no idea what that is...
Andrew just came walking up from the kitchen with something imaginary in his hand. I asked for a kiss but apparently there was no time for that! He held up his hand to me and said, "I have a tooth berry for you." I puzzled for a split second, but held out my hand to recieve this tooth berry. He said, "its just plastic, you can put it in your mouth if you want. Its white."

Hmmm... ok, so I put this imaginary white plastic tooth berry in my mouth and he was SO VERY pleased. Then pop, another appeared in his hand and he offered it up to daddy. Of course daddy obliged too.

Ahh, I love the imagination of an almost 3 year old. I wonder if that will be only every tooth berry.

Beat It

A very positive morning...
I just talked to mom and dad. Mom sounds great, considering she had a stomach tube running down her nose, oxygen in her nose, a foley cathader, an IV and an O2 sensor taped to her finger. Oh yeah, and an abdominal incision. EEESH!

Dad said they are both bright eyed today about the fight ahead of her. The doctor was in already today and he said that they are not giving up on her and she should not plan on taking it lying down. They have sent all of the removed tissue to pathology to see about the makeup of the cancer cells and they will come up with the best recipe of chemo drugs to give her. He says there is a chance of whipping it into remission.

Today her stomach tube will be clamped off and if she does not aspirate in the next 24 hrs, they will remove it tomorrow morning. Her cathader will be removed today sometime. They also plan to get her up for a shower as well. Go mom! Lots going on.

Friday, September 23, 2005

Messages in a bottle

Or in a blog...
So many of you dear friends are a daily encouragement to me and have expressed your prayers and well wishes for my mom. PLEASE post them here for her to see by commenting on this thread! I will be eternally indebted to you! Kisses!

Her name is Gayle.

Like snow

Not the news we were hoping for...
Mom's cancer has spread. They did the hysterectomy and removed as much non essential tissue that they could but the interior of mom's abdomen is covered with the cancer cells that were floating in the fluid. It looks like snow. The doctor said its hard to say but it looks as though the cancer probably started 3-6 months ago. So fast... so very very fast. No official prognosis as of yet, but the doctor did tell dad that generally speaking, at this stage patients generally live about 2 years at best. The chance of her making it 5 years is only about 4-5%. And it all depends really on how she reponds to the chemo. Mom is still in recovery so I've not spoken to her yet.

Dad is sounding pretty weary. I am pretty weary too. And just plain sick at my stomach. I hate this so much. Hate is not even a strong enough word. Abhorrance approaches what Im feeling.Thankfully I was at the mall with girlfriends when I got the call. If I'd been alone, it would have been so much harder. God has blessed me with a wonderful support group, and most importantly all of you. Thanks so much for being here for me, girls.

Surgery today

On the ball...
My mom is having surgery this morning. The consult went well with the Oncology GYN specialist. She was ready to get moving on the cancer and the doctor was as well. They admitted her yesterday and she's having a radical hysterectomy this morning. No word yet on a prognosis, her chances of beating it or a treatment regiment for chemo. The doc says he'll have a better idea about those once he sees whats in there. We are praying fervently!!

Gym boy...
Andrew starts toddler gym again today. It runs fall through spring. A church in the neighboring town has the program as an outreach. Its totally free! They have TONS of donated toys and climb-on things for the kiddos to play on for about 45m, then they have circle time and a snack. We just love it! I can't wait to get there at 9:30 today. 3 of our playgroup friends are also signed up. It will be a blast! Afterward, we're headed to the mall for some excersize and playtime. And yummy lunch!

We had a great time with our friends yesterday. The natural foods place is very cool. But I'm not commited to that kind of eating since its so darned expensive. But it will be a super source of whole grain products whenever we can get ourselves back into the low carb groove. Of course that means Don must stop bringing home boxes of cheese curls and Little Debbies. Rats. LOL After shopping the park was FABULOUS! We had it to ourselves for the whole time pretty much. The babies were wonderful and the kids... well, there kids. Andrew experienced his first face and mouth full of sand yesterday, courtesy of M. He totally deserved it because he was throwing sand. Guys.

Thursday, September 22, 2005


Right now...
My mom is in Birmingham, AL right at this very moment meeting with an Oncology specialist in GYN. We found out last week that she has ovarian cancer. I'm so very worried about my mom... she is my precious. Today is a consult about surgery and follow up treatment. Meaning chemo likely. I can't loose her. Just can't. I need her so much. My children need her. My dad needs her. The world needs her. (bites nails) I will probably jump about 5 ft in the air when they call me with news about the consult. Breathe.

Its Thursday

Andrew has preschool in an hour. As soon as I finish tossing this cuppa java down my neck, I'm going to get us ready to get out the door. Its no big deal really, we walk there, as its just a block away. That rocks!

After he's done at 11:30, my dear friends E and C are coming over with their kiddos and we're going to check out a new Natural Foods place that just opened last week. They specialize in whole foods, organics and grass fed beef. E is especially interested in the latter. Afterward we're headed to the park for a picnic and playtime.

Big Rita...
Hurricane Rita is barreling toward TX. We're keeping an eye on that and those folks are in our prayers. Its such a scarey thing. Kudos to the TX officials for being on top of things in contrast to the toothless idiots in LA. Many prayers going up for our fellow Texan Americans!

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

More later? LOL

Well in my last post I said, "more later." I meant later that week... but now its the next year. So much for good intentions.

Abi, our 3rd child, was born in July. She's 8w old today. How very precious she is! But whew... when I thought of a 3rd, I didn't realize how hard it is to have 2 so close in age. MG and Andrew are 7 years apart... having them less than 3 years apart is a LOT more work. A blessing mind you, but a LOT of work!

We've been busy, getting back into the swing of things with the playgroup. Oh how I love my girls! We were at the park just today and Andrew played for 3 straight hours. He even cried a little when I told him it was time to load up. Poor guy does love the outdoors. It was "a great day!" as he would say.

The kids both fell asleep on the way home... gotta love that action! I got a good hour to read the net and have a snack. Ahhh.. me time. Little bits here and there are what make the mommying time go so well. Its all about sanity!

Tonight I'm going to a girlfriend's house. Her DH is out of town and she's hosting a gatering for pizza and a movie. Abi and I are going. Andrew is staying home with daddy for some guy time. Its an impromptu thing and that's just fabulous! Ahhh... more me time! Wahoo! More on that later.