Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Halloween Pics

The kids were so excited for Halloween this morning. They all put their costumes on as soon as they woke up. When I told them to take their costumes off until until Halloween, Spencer took the liberty to point out that it was Halloween "all day long". You've gotta love kids!

Gavin was "Bob the Builder". He had a hard time keeping his hat on while trick or treating. It kept falling into his eyes and then he couldn't see his candy. However, his hat did become useful in the car when he opened up his smarties and used his hat as a bowl for them.

Emily is wearing the witch costume that my mom made me in the 2nd grade. She told me that this costume makes her look "really cute".

Spencer was supposed to be a lion tamer and Gavin was going to be the lion. However, we couldn't find a cute lion costume for Gavin and so Spencer became a Safari explorer.


Happy Halloween

Well as Halloween comes to a close, I thought it would be fun to post some pictures of the kids in their costumes. Ethan didn't get a costume this year because he can't go anywhere. Spencer was a safari explorer, Emily was a witch (the exact costume that my Mom made me in the 2nd grade), and Gavin was Bob the Builder.

Tim stayed home with Ethan and I took the 3 trick or treaters to the nursing home up the street which was perfect for Gavin. You get a load of treats in just one stop. I think it is good for the residents as well as for the kids. The residents get to see all of the children in their fun costumes and the kids are exposed to a population that may be intimidating under different circumstances.

After we we left the care center I took the kids up to my parents house to let them see the kids in their costumes. We didn't stay long because as Spencer says, " time is candy". We then dropped off Gavin back at the house with Tim and then I took the older 2 kids around our neighborhood.

Needless to say, we have way more candy than anyone of us needs. Although my feet are sore, it was actually fun to walk the streets and see where people live. We are still trying to get to know everyone. As fun as it was, I am glad it's over and I am going to talk Tim into rubbing my feet. HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!


Monday, October 29, 2007

My Family

Tim doesn't get enough credit for the wonderful husband and father that he is. I truly value his opinions and I admire his intelligence and insight. I have to say that I think he is so handsome with his early greys (I'd better since I am sure that I am the cause of a few of them).

Gavin loves wearing Spencer's Darth Vader helmet. He also had been chewing on a whip that Spencer had bought at scout camp which gives the nice black smudging on his face.

This is Emily just after she pulled out her tooth. This would make tooth #3 and is the first tooth she pulled out all by herself. She is now working on her other front tooth. She has really matured this last year.

Spencer loves to mess around with the camera and take pictures of himself and his surroundings. He is such a ham when he gets his picture taken. He is such a good big brother and is a big help with Gavin.

I just wanted to post a few pictures of my family that have been taken in the last couple of weeks. All of the pictures so far on this blog have just been of Ethan ..... but I am so lucky to have 4 beautiful and intelligent children and they all deserve a little recognition. They amaze me everyday.

Tim has been working so hard at work lately and then has been coming home and working on major home projects. He never complains. I don't know how I got so lucky to marry such a hard working, supportive, and patient man. I have many, many shortcomings and although I am sure he notices, he never holds them against me. I have been very blessed. I love you all!


Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Pediatrician Appointment

Yesterday was Ethan's Pediatrician appointment. He weighed 17lbs 5oz! He has really put on the weight since his last surgery. At his 2 month visit he was only in the 10% range for weight and now he is in the 90%. He is also growing in length which is what we want to see. This helps us know that this is true weight gain and not water weight which is a bad sign. Our MD also said that developmentally speaking he is right on track. There was nothing that she tested that he was behind in. She took him off of his zantac and wants us to keep trying to feed him with a spoon. She said that in a month if he still wasn't eating well by spoon then we may want to get another swallow study.

I tried to feed him some really thinned down cereal tonight, and just like before, as soon as it hit his mouth he threw up. He did it three times in a row! What a stinker. You can tell that he doesn't like it. He grunts and clenches his jaw shut when you even bring the spoon up to his mouth. The food doesn't even hit the back of his throat. It is the craziest thing. I really don't think that it is a swallowing issue because he breastfeeds great and takes his medicine just fine as well. In fact, we have been giving him some teething biscuits and he does just fine gumming those. I have no clue as to what his issue is with the cereal.

Our MD wants us to be feeding him 1/2 cup of cereal a day whether it is all at once or in divided doses throughout the day. I guess I will just keep trying and hopefully the consistency will get him used to the idea that this is the direction we are moving in.

Other than being stubborn with eating, Ethan is doing remarkably well. I am amazed at how happy and "normal" he is. He is completely off of the oxygen. I do spot checks on him every few days or so. Today when he was sleeping his oxygen saturation's were 82-88% on room air. That is so much better than before his last surgery. When people ask how he is doing I say that he is pink and plump......just they way we like him.


Monday, October 22, 2007

I've Been Tagged!

I was actually "tagged" a little while ago and I am supposed to tell you 6 interesting things about myself or my family. It has taken me a while to come up with anything since I am a pretty open book as well as being fairly boring. As these things may not be very interesting, I am afraid that this is going to be as good as it gets. So, here it goes.....

1) Tim and I spent our 1st anniversary giving birth to our son Spencer. We were married at 1:00pm and he was born at 1:01pm almost exactly a year later.

2) I delivered my 1st two babies with an epidural and I delivered my 2nd two babies natural. This actually came in very handy when Ethan was born because I was up and moving
quickly and was discharged from the hospital only 12 hours after giving birth.

3) When Spencer was 1, I went to nursing school and worked full time. Tim was also a full time student and worked full time. (In fact, there was a semester after I'd had an ectopic pregnancy that he worked 1 full time job, a part time job, and went to school full time. He literally had only 4 hours a week to himself.)

4) I was the sole bread winner for 3 years while Tim went to law school. As proud of myself that I was able to be able to support my family, I was very ready to give him back title when he graduated.

5) Tim and I were engaged after only 3 months of knowing each other. I knew he was the one for me after our first date. I had actually told my brother the day after our date that " I am going to marry that man."

6) We've been married for 11 years and have moved 8 times. We just built our house a year ago that we plan on living in for many, many years to come. I hate moving.

So there you have it. I am sure if I thought long and hard I might be able to come up with some more but at this time I am tapped out. Now that I have done this, I am supposed to tag someone else, so Brynn, Mike, and Jenn........"tag, your it!" (when you get time, I know you are all busy.)

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

A Little Getaway

It may not be that far from home, but any getaway is a good getaway. I am sitting in a hotel room up in Park City. Tim had some work which brought him up this way and we thought it would be fun to take the opportunity to turn it into a mini vacation to try and decompress from all of the recent stress. I realize that this is probably more for myself than for Tim since he has been working here from the hotel lobby. The 3 older kids are staying with various family members which I can't thank them enough for. We obviously brought Ethan with us and I actually think he's also enjoyed a little one on one time. We will be up here for 2 nights.

We arrived here last night and it was so nice just to spend a little time with Tim. We haven't had much time to spend together which is normal after having a new baby, but it definitely has been emphasized with Ethan's heart problems. We went to the Olive Garden last night which I absolutely love. I never get to go there unless it is with my friend Jody or a special occasion. It is not Tim's favorite. (Tim just told me that he takes me there "all the time" and pointed out that the last time we went on a date we went to the Olive Garden. He said that we go there 80% of the time we go out. The only deceiving thing about that statement is that I was 6 months pregnant the last time we went on a date. So as I stated before, when you only go on a date once a year I consider that "a special occasion".)

The baby and I slept in this morning while Tim worked and then Tim was able to take a break to go out to lunch. We plan on going up to Heber City tonight to a good BBQ restaurant that my Dad recommended to us. While Tim was working I spent my day with Ethan in the outlet stores. I spent way more than I probably should have but hey, Christmas is coming and I can just say that I am getting a head start.

It has been so nice up here. I absolutely love the mountains. It was rainy last night but today it has been snowing. I love it! It makes me feel that much farther away from everything. Now, I realize that when I get home there is still laundry, dishes, and plenty of cleaning to do. But while I am away those things are far from my mind. I needed that.


Friday, October 12, 2007

Get Moving

OK, so I understand that my posts from now may be pretty boring to all those who might be reading. Now that the drama of Ethan is pretty stable the only stuff I have to write about is my own life, which by all accounts is not very exciting. This site started out as an information source to keep people updated on Ethan's condition and I will continue to do this when there is news. In the meantime it will serve as a journal of family happenings for myself and people who may be interested.

Yesterday was a pretty busy day. I had a staff meeting up in Ogden that I had to go to and then I went to Emily's soccer game. She did so good. She actually scored 3 goals. She seems to be a pretty natural athlete and really loves physical activity. She is a fast runner and is not scared of the ball. She is a real go getter on the field. So after her game we went and picked up Spencer from his football practice, picked up some pizza and went home to see Tim. Things were pretty settled down so I decided that I would go and play volleyball at the church house to try and get a little physical activity as well as a little socialization. So anyway, here is how pathetically out of shape I am. I came home in a great mood. It felt so good to get out and MOVE. We played a pretty fast paced game called king of the court because there were so many people. You were constantly moving. Anyway, when I got home I was sweating like a pig! I stripped down to my underwear and turned the fan on because was so hot. I made Tim promise me that if I was dragging my feet next Thursday when we practice again that he would encourage me. I really enjoyed myself but I can get lazy and talk myself out of it when the day actually comes around.

Boring, I know. But after being cooped up in the house most of my days, it is big fun for me to get out and do something. Also, Adrian (my sister-in-law) "tagged" me. This means that I am supposed to post 6 interesting things about myself. Watch for this post in a few days because it will take me at least that long to come up with something. Hope all is well with all of you.


Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Plugging Along

It's been a few days since I've posted last. Thanks for all of the comments and suggestions about feeding Ethan. I think his pediatrician appointment is next week. I will let you know what the MD thinks. Until then, I am not going to worry about it.

Again, not much is happening. I started back to work Saturday night. My shifts are from 5pm-5am. It's not really that bad but I sure had to muster up some energy to get excited about going. It really helped when I found out that my good friend Carie would be working that night. It is always better when you work with people that you enjoy. The shift itself was good but man, working those 12 hour graveyards sure kick my butt after I've been off for a while.

Since his second surgery, Ethan is really filling out. He has never had a problem with his weight but I weighed him at my parents house on Sunday (only 10 days since his Cardio follow up), he's gained about a 1lb and a half. His face is noticeably rounder and he is definitely heavier.

Tim and Ethan did good while I was at work. Ethan still struggles with the bottle but managed to get enough to stay satisfied until I came home. Gavin was a terror yesterday but has been fairly mellow today. Spencer brought home a non-impressive report card yesterday. So today I am meeting with both his teacher and Emily's teacher before they go off track next week.

I am going to have to figure out some fun things that we can do while they are out of school for 3 weeks. It is hard because our cardiologist has told us now that it is getting colder that we need to start keeping Ethan away from others to prevent him from getting sick. Any suggestions? In the summer time it is not too bad but when it is cold and muddy outside, the kids get really stir crazy when they are stuck with me in the house. I talked with Tim about getting our bonus room above the garage finished as soon as possible (after he finishes or the weather stops him working on the yard). It would be a nice big room where the kids could run and play and I could maybe start exercising. I don't think I convinced him that this is a priority. He has so much on his plate and when I work weekends he can't get much done because he is watching the kids. I wish we had enough money to just pay someone to do it but I guess we will have to just keep plugging along.

Anyway, all of the things that I wish for and think are important are just secondary when it comes right down to it. I am so grateful for our health and ability to be together as a family. I have to constantly try and keep everything in perspective because I know first hand how unimportant everything else becomes when you are fighting for a loved one. I fear that if I forgot this lesson, it wouldn't take much to make me remember. I try and take the good days for what they are, but you are always aware that that next hospital stay could be right around the next corner.

For what it's worth, enjoy your families and loved ones while you are with them. Not one of us have any guarantees.


Friday, October 5, 2007

Mush Time

Last night Ethan was wide awake and wanting to play and Tim and the kids were already in bed. I got the bright idea that maybe now would be the time to try some rice cereal for the first time. Normally we would have already started this, but we were told to wait a couple of weeks from his hospital discharge so that if he had any reactions we would not confuse new foods with new medications. So anyway, I thawed out some milk to mix with his cereal, made sure that the mush was real thin so that he wouldn't choke, and then put on a bib and placed him in his chair. I was so excited to be doing "normal" baby things that I got my camera ready to take some pictures. Well, it didn't go so well. I put the spoon in his mouth and he immediately started making these gagging motions and then just threw up all over himself. He didn't even try to swallow his mush. So needless to say, I didn't take any pictures. I think that he still has a strong oral aversion from all of the tubes down his throat and all of the yucky medications while he was in the hospital. I guess I will wait a few days and then try again. If not, I will just talk with his pediatrician at his appointment in a couple of weeks on what she thinks I should do. If any of you have any suggestions, let me know. Sooner or later he's going to need something more than just breastmilk.


Thursday, October 4, 2007

Officially Blonde

Alright, I concede. I was lying on the bed this morning playing with Ethan and for whatever reason I just started focusing on his hair. I knew that when I had trimmed his hair about a month ago that most of what came off was his dark hair. I didn't think much of it. I guess I figured that it just looked blonder because it was now shorter. I think I have been in denial. So, after inspecting him this morning I can officially say that Ethan is blond. I don't know how it happened. He was born with such dark hair. I don't want to make it seem that I don't like my blondies. I was just hoping that one of my kids might look like me after 9 months of sacrifice.

Ethan was an unplanned pregnancy and I used to joke around that my sign from heaven that this would all be OK was that he would be born with dark hair. Well, now that he is here I don't need hair color to provide any assurance. He was meant to be with our family. And so with that being said, I guess he can shed his brown locks and fit into the family mold of blond hair and pretty blue eyes.


Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Fussy Night

Things have been pretty mellow these last couple of days. I guess sometimes no news is good news. Last night however Ethan had a HUGE screaming fit. I couldn't console him and I was beginning to get concerned. If this had been a couple of weeks ago it wouldn't have bothered me as much but he's been his normal self lately. I don't know what was wrong. He'd been a little more fussy than usual yesterday but just very agitated and intense all throughout the night. He is still sleeping. I hope he is feeling better when he wakes up.

On a funner note, Ian got his heart yesterday. I have not heard how things have gone but I am sure that Justin and Jenn are so relieved that the waiting game is over and they can move on to a different phase of recovery. I took a small gift of music and books up to them on Monday night for Ian but they were off the unit and I left it at the desk. I am hoping that they got it because I know that sometimes the room and machines can be so loud and it seemed like when Ethan was there he was comforted by the soft music. He was very sensitive to beeping and noises that would startle him. I think that the music provided a constant sound for him to focus on.

Right now life seems boring but like I said boring means nothing too major is going on. Tim is just trying to find time to put in the sprinkling system and I start back to work this Saturday. The kids just keep plugging along in school and Gavin is just Gavin. Well, I guess I've stalled long enough. I should try to get the house picked up.