Archive for April, 2010

Owen’s surgery was this morning, and it went very well!  Thank you to everyone out there who has been praying for Owen.  We really appreciate all the prayers and kind words you’ve been sending our way.  Here’s a recap of our day…

We arrived at the surgery center promptly at 6.  They got us all checked in and then ushered us to our own private recovery room.  Owen was excited that he had his own personal TV to watch while he waited for surgery.  The nurses introduced themselves and then helped Owen get dressed in his special pajamas.  We’d been talking about these special pajamas that he’d have to wear at the hospital so he knew they were coming.  Here’s a picture of him in his big hospital bed:

We had about an hour to kill while all the paper work got filled out and the doctors and nurses told us all we needed to know.  Owen got to watch a lot of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and Handy Manny.  We also were trying to get him excited about all the ice cream and popsicles he’d get to eat when we got home.  Here’s Travis pumping him up about how AWESOME this experience was going to be!  It looks like we fooled him…for the moment.

Then the anesthesiologist came in and gave Owen some kind of drug cocktail so that he could relax.  And relax he did!  He got a little loopy and kept talking about the horse in the room…and there definitely was not a horse in the room.  Loopy Owen also didn’t mind smiling for a picture underneath all those nice heated hospital blankets.

Before we knew it they were wheeling him down the hall to surgery.  He thought it was cool to ride on a rolling bed, so he had no problems saying goodbye to us.  Trav and I went to the waiting room while the surgery took place.  We were surprised how fast it was…30 minutes later the nurse came to tell us he was done.  And then the fun began.

As we walked out of the waiting room, I heard this strange noise that sounded like part cry part scream.  I remember thinking, “Man, someone must be in a lot of pain.”  As a mom you can pretty much recognize your child’s cry anywhere…I guess I’m going to have to get used to Owen’s new voice.  He sounds like a completely different kid with those tonsils gone.  Anyway, once we turned a corner and I realized that horrible sound was coming from my child, my motherly instinct clicked on.  The nurse immediately handed him over to me.  He was flailing and screaming and desperately trying to pull the IV out of his arm.  I finally managed to sit down in a chair with him, and then it took both Travis and a nurse to keep him from hurting himself.  Later I asked the nurse if this kind of behavior is normal for a little kid coming out of anesthesia and she said that it is.  That made me feel better, but I wish I’d have known what to expect.  This whole thrashing, screaming, hellish experience lasted about 30 minutes.  The nurse finally bribed Owen with a glass of juice, saying that if he’d drink the juice she’d take out the IV.  That worked and once the IV was out, he calmed down.  Some of his calm could also have had to do with the morphine they gave him during his freak out.  Regardless, the screaming and kicking was subsiding and we were feeling a bit less stressed.  Here he is with Travis once he’d calmed down:

During one of the most stressful moments of the anesthesia withdrawl, Owen yelled at the nurse while she and Travis were holding him down, “I DON’T LIKE YOU!!!!”.  I was rather embarrassed, but I figure this must not have been the first time she’d heard this from a kid.  She responded with, “Buddy, I wouldn’t like me either right now.”  She later told me that she’d raised 5 kids, so she could take anything they put out.  After 5 kids, I guess so! 

We were thankful for how God orchestrates everything so perfectly.  Right as he was beginning to chill out, Dinosaur Train (Owen’s favorite show) was coming on.  This helped calm him down completely so that we could get some fluids in him and check his mouth for bleeding.  The nurse told us that if he didn’t bleed during all that screaming, he probably wouldn’t bleed at all.  That gave me a little comfort considering we’d received the instruction that if we see any bleeding at all we are to take him immediately to the ER.  A few minutes later, the surgeon came in to talk to us.  He’s a man probably in his early 60’s…so he’s been doing these kind of surgeries for quite a while.  He commented to us that Owen had some “massive tonsils”.  From a man who’s seen it all, I’ll take that to mean that Owen’s were pretty big! 

Since his surgery was out-patient, we stayed for 2 hours after surgery and then they sent us on our way.  By 10am, we were wheeling Owen out to the car in style.

He did just fine on the ride home, but immediately asked if he could see “Molly Cake” when we got there.  I called my mom and she met us over at our house with Molly.  He was happy to see her for about 30 seconds…until she started to play with his toys.  Glad to see he’s still his old self!

Owen was very excited to open up his care package from Nana and Bubba.  This was the motivating factor behind getting his clothes on and getting in the car to go home.  They gave him lots of fun things to do in bed like sticker books, coloring books, games, dragon action figures, a movie, and tonsil dog!  Nana wrote that the dog had his tonsils out, too, and Owen could take the bandaid off the dog’s throat when he thought the doggy’s throat was feeling better.  Very cute, Nana!  Owen thought so, too.

Currently the little patient is napping.  We gave him his first dose of narcotic pain medicine and he’s been sleeping soundly.  He’s already downed two cups of pudding and a fudge pop.  He seems happy when he’s eating cold foods.  I stocked up yesterday, so I’ll just keep the cold stuff coming!  The nurses did tell us that today he’d probably feel better than he will tomorrow and Saturday.  She said he’ll start swelling a lot more and his throat will hurt worse then.  So the next couple of days could be rough.  We’re going to try to stay on top of his pain by giving him lots of medicine and keep the fluids coming.  I’ll update with more later.  Thanks for all the prayers!

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We’ll be up and at the surgery center WAY too early.  6am is our scheduled arrival time and the surgery is set for 7.  It’s supposed to take 45 minutes for surgery, and then he’ll be in recovery for at least 2 hours.  Then they’re sending us home.  Scary.  I like the idea of having nurses around to help out for a while.   

Molly’s spending the night at my parents’ house, the fridge is stocked with everything cold I could possibly think to buy at the grocery store, and Travis is taking the next 2 days off to help out.  I’ll update tomorrow after surgery.  Your prayers are appreciated!

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trying to keep her occupied

Molly’s a mover.  She can’t walk around yet, but she gets where she needs to go by crawling…fast.  She pulls herself up on everything, pulls things off shelves, has no interest in toys or sitting still, loves to attempt to eat dog food, and frequently tries to throw things in the bathtub.  She keeps me busy.  And she’s not really excited about sleeping anymore.  Because her brother loves his sleep and likes to spend a lot of time doing it, Molly and I get some quality bonding time in the afternoons.  On this particular afternoon, I decided to see if something a little different would hold her attention…and it worked!  Turns out bathtime isn’t the only time that playing in the water is fun.  Give the kid two bowls of water a couple of spoons and she’s set!  She really loved hearing the sounds of things as they clanked into the bowls.

Working on her sharing skills…

Just tickled that I’m letting her make a royal mess all over herself and the kitchen (because it DEFINITELY spread beyond the towel I put down)…

This occupied her for about 15 minutes.  That’s a record for Molly who’s attention span for anything is about 3 seconds.  After about 15 minutes, she was ready to start dumping the water from the bowls all over the floor.  I drew the line there.  I’m fine with a mess, but that would have been a multiple towel clean-up.  She wasn’t too happy with my decision…

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Both sets of grandparents had the brilliant idea of jointly buying the kids a swingset for their birthdays.  Travis and I couldn’t have been happier about this gift idea and had a lot of fun shopping for the perfect swingset for the kids.  We finally came upon the one we wanted, it was ordered, delivered, and then the fun began!  This large swingset in our backyard came in a relatively small box (compared to the size of the finished product).  But inside that box was 160 pounds of lumber…all unmarked.  My mom and I had read the reviews of the swingset and learned that many people had spent 20+ hours putting together this set…not an idea that made us excited.  We decided it would be helpful if we went through and measured all the wood, labeling it with the corresponding letter/number combo (E6, K5, M2, etc…).  This proved to be very helpful and saved the guys the hassle of having to figure out which piece was which, as well as preventing them from accidentally using the wrong piece in the wrong place.  Another thing that made this process significantly easier was the help of our friend (and contractor) Scott!  We hired him out for the day to be in charge of this daunting task…and we were SO glad we did. 

The boys got started last Saturday at around 8.  (My dad and brother came to help out, also.)  There was a pretty good chance of rain so we were anxious to get this thing up before it hit.  Owen kept asking what the “guys” were doing in the garage and wanted to be out there helping.  We let him “help” for a while…

…but he proved to be a bit more distracting than he was helpful.  To keep him from feeling left out, my mom and I took the kids and ran a few errands.  We were gone a couple of hours, and when we got back the guys almost had the thing put together!!  Travis and Scott put together the main structure, while my dad and Nate put together the “accessories” like the slide, rock wall, and swings. 

The above picture was taken right before it started to pour.  They had worked all morning on the construction of the main structure…all of which they were able to do in the garage.  When they finally needed to take it outside to finish, the rain began.  But that didn’t deter them from finishing.  We found as many rain ponchos as we could and they got it done in record time…6 hours!  Here’s the finished product:

The rain pretty much continued all day.  A big disappointment for Owen…he was so excited to have his swingset set up and then he couldn’t even play on it!  The rain stopped for about an hour that evening and Travis and I ran outside and dried off the swings and the slide so the kids could try it out.  Owen LOVES the slide!  In fact, he wouldn’t even try the swings because all he wanted to do was climb up and slide down.

We were excited to see if Molly liked her new pink swing…

She didn’t.  In fact, she hated it.  No surprise there.  The girl hates to swing.  We’re hoping that changes soon.  While she may not like the swings, she LOVES the slide!

The forecast is saying rain all week until Thursday…the day Owen gets his tonsils out and is bedridden for a week.  Bad timing, huh?  Regardless, we love it.  Thanks Mimi, Dada, Nana, and Bubba for coming up with such a great birthday idea!!

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My First Birthday Bib Boy/Girl-monogrammed bib, baby's first birthday bib, pink, blue, first birthday cupcake, cupcake, one candle

…because she no longer spits up!  It took 11 1/2 LONG months, but I can finally say that the reflux is gone.  It took me a while to want to do this post because I was sure that the second I did it, she’d start spewing again.  But she’s officially off her medicine and we get a chance to see her cute outfits, rather than read about how cute they are.  (Because evidently a lot of people really like to buy bibs that say “I’m so cute” or “Adorable” or “Daddy’s Girl” or “Princess”.  There’s not really a whole lot of options out there for us bib-buyers…particularly those of us who need to buy our bibs in bulk.  Like go through 10 bibs in an hour kind of bulk.)

I am loving the fact that I don’t have to do laundry every day because otherwise I’ll run out of bibs and burp clothes.  Don’t get me wrong…I still do at least one load of laundry almost every day, but I’m no longer worrying about the velcro on the bibs sticking to my clothes and making funny pulls on the fabric.  I no longer nag Travis about remembering to save the cute bibs for going out in public and letting her wear her “Daddy’s Girl” bibs when we’re playing around the house.  And I’m no longer bending down several times an hour to wipe up the floor of Target, the grocery store, church, my friends’ houses, etc. 

If you don’t have a spitter, then you probably think I’m exaggerating.  If you’ve had a spitter who literally will spit up the entire contents of everything that was just put in her stomach and then some… multiple times an hour…you know my relief.  I no longer give her over to the nursery workers with a warning, “Just so you know, she spits up A LOT.”  And they would inevitable say, “Oh that’s okay, we’re used to that.”  And then I would say, “No, you don’t understand.  She spits up a WHOLE lot. ”  And then the responses from people when I’d come to pick her up, “Um, just so you know, she spit up a whole lot today.  Just didn’t know if that was normal and thought you’d want to know.”   

Ahhh…it’s nice not to have to worry about those things anymore.

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I’ve been posting quite a bit about Molly lately considering she’s the birthday girl and all.  I’ll give you a little update on her in a minute, but here’s what Owen’s been up to this month…

He’s 35 months old…next month he’ll be 3! 

Some things he’s been up to…

* Being hilarious.  This kid makes us laugh all the time from the new way he answer questions (“Um, sure!”) to his crazy ideas (during dinner:  “Hey guys, I have another idea!  I’m gonna get up on the table!”). 

* Guns.  What is it about boys and guns?  The kid doesn’t even own a toy gun and EVERYTHING is made into a gun.  He loves to line up his army guys and make them have “battle fights”.  I blame this on his father. 

* LOVES his sister.  He loves to wake her up in the morning.  I’ll hear him in there saying, “Good morning, sweet girl!”  His name for her is Molly Cake (because I call her Molly Kate all the time).  He’ll be playing with her saying, “Hey Mowee Cake!  How are you sweetie?”.

He has a very sweet side and he’s very much a mama’s boy…but he also has this stubborn streak that drives me up the wall!  Right now our battle is this, he REFUSES to try to dress/undress himself.  He throws enormous fits when I ask him to remove his socks/pants/underwear/shirt for bathtime.  You would seriously think I asked him to cut off his big toe.  I know that I just need to make him do it because he can do it.  He just doesn’t want to and he refuses to even try.  As soon as those tonsils come out and he’s all healed up, I’m going into teacher-mode and he’ WILL learn to take on and off his clothes.  I just feel a little bad for him now (you know, with those huge tonsils and sore throats and all). 

By next month, he’ll be tonsil-free!  Hopefully he’ll be a lot healthier and we’ll be done with medical drama for a while.

And here’s Molly’s 12 month shot:

Here’s what Molly’s been up to:

* Pulling up to a stand and starting to walk around pushing a toy (with assistance…she still would fall flat on her nose if I wasn’t there to make sure the push toy didn’t go too fast).

* Still only two teeth!  Where are they?!?!

* Pointing at what she wants.  It’s really funny to see this little girl pointing at the person who she’d like to have hold her, pointing at the toy of her choice, the cup that she likes.  She even points at the outfit she’d like to wear!  Not even kidding. 

* Laughing at her brother.  It’s like they have this unspoken language.  They just look at each other and start laughing.  I love it.

* Dropping her morning nap.  We’re on the one nap schedule and I LOVE IT!  I was s0 good about allowing Owen to have two good naps a day until he was about 14 months old (when he dropped his morning nap on his own).  Because we’re on the go so much, it’s been harder for Molly to get that consistant morning nap.  She got it when we were home, but that didn’t happen every day.  Over the last couple of weeks, we’ve been phasing out that nap and she’s been doing MUCH better about napping well the afternoons.  We’re all a lot happier around here!

* Temper tantrums.  They’re beginning.  She lets me know when she doesn’t like something by yelling/screaming as loud as she possibly can.  And she’s loud. 

That’s all for now!  More next month…

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We were excited to see Molly dig into her first cupcake.  The girl is passionate about eating.  It’s seriously her very favorite activity.  After singing happy birthday to her, I plopped her cupcake down on her tray.  At first she just stared at it.  I think she was a little confused.  She’s used to small, bite-sized pieces ready for her consumption.  She didn’t know what to do with this big chunk of cake!  After sticking her finger in the icing and tasting it, she was ready to dig in.  And dig in she did!

She loved her cupcake so much that she was very sad to see it end!

And, for your viewing pleasure, we captured the cake-eating on camera!  I fully realize that this video will probably only be watched in full by the grandmas.  It’s rather long…about 3 minutes.  But the first minute is worth watching if you want to hear Owen belt out “Happy Birthday”, and you’ll also get to see those first tentative bites.  Here we go…

Well, there you have it…a complete recap of Molly’s first birthday!  Jeff and Julie, I hope it helped you feel like you were here!  We missed you all!

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Travis had been in Chicago since Thursday.  He had the privilege of being a groomsman in his college friend/roommate Kevin’s wedding.  I was happy for him to have a weekend away to spend with friends, and we knew that Molly wouldn’t know that her Daddy wasn’t there on her actual birthday.  He got home on Sunday afternoon, and we had a family party planned for that evening.  Before I get to the party, here are a couple of pictures of Molly’s birthday table.

And her cupcakes!

After the kids woke up from their naps, my parents and brother came over for the party.  We started off with a dinner of spaghetti and meatballs…Molly’s favorite food.  Molly polished off every last bite and was ready to open her presents.  But we managed to sneak in a family picture before presents.

Owen was eager to help Molly open her presents, and she was very willing to let him do all the work.  I bet that will change by her next birthday!

One of her presents was a baby bottle to feed to her baby doll, Janice.  Molly actually knew to put the bottle up to the baby’s mouth…although instead of leaving it there so the baby could drink, she used the bottle to bang the baby’s face.  Oh well, we’ll work on that one!

Travis gave her the Fancy Nancy doll, and my present for Molly was a fun sun hat to wear this summer.  I looked everywhere for the perfect hat.  I think I know every single sunhat listed on Etsy, but I fell in love with this ruffled hat from Gymboree and can’t wait to get pictures of her in it outside!

She had lots of fun opening her presents, but the highlight of the night came when she ate her cupcake.  Because I took several pictures of this event and have a video, I deemed it worthy of it’s own post.  Coming up next…

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molly’s birthday…part 1

As I sat down to do Molly’s birthday post, I realized that I have SO many pictures.  I could just pick out a couple favorites, but they are all so good!  So I’m going to break the birthday posts into two parts.  First…the actual birth DAY.

Travis was out of town on Saturday…Molly’s actual birthday.  I tried my best to make her birthday special, but we saved the party for Sunday so her Daddy could be there.  My mom came over on Saturday morning and brought breakfast.  After breakfast Molly got to open her first present.  Travis left a present for her to open while he was away.  Owen helped her rip open the paper to reveal her new Fancy Nancy doll!  For those of you that don’t know about Fancy Nancy, you should.  Molly’s too young to really like her yet, but I’m getting her started early.  Fancy Nancy is a series of children’s books about a little girl who loves to be fancy.  She’s all the rage with preschool-age girls.  Here’s Molly with Fancy Nancy:

After playing with Fancy Nancy for a while, my mom and I took the kids over to our Parents as Teacher vehicle fair.  My parents took Owen last year while I was in the hospital after having Molly.  They said he had a blast and when I saw it advertised again this year, I was anxious to take him.  I know it’s not the girliest thing to do for Molly’s birthday, but she loved getting out and about.  Here’s a picture of Owen and me in a UPS truck with flames on the side…pretty awesome, huh?

The vehicle fair was a bit stressful for poor Molly.  There was a person dressed as a firedog, and Molly has some serious fears when it comes to people who have too much facial hair…so the firedog really put her over the edge.  She screamed when she saw him and was a bit sensitive after that.  On top of that, the drivers of all the vehicles let the kids sit in the trucks and honk the horns…very cool, but very stressful for Molly.  The horns and the firedog were just a little too much for the little gal.  She conked out in the car on the way home, so we postponed our plans to take her for a ride on the carousel and went home for naps.  It was a good thing we did because the carousel was stressful for her, too!  Last time I took her on it, she loved it!  I thought she was going to love it again…she seemed to like sitting on the kangaroo before the ride started.

But then the ride started and she literally was trying to climb up me to get off the kangaroo.  You can see her clinging to me and pulling up my sweater trying to get off the ride!

While the carousel wasn’t a hit, dinner was fun for Molly!  (Surprise, surprise…the kid loves to eat.)  We went to Chick-Fila and got Molly some chicken noodle soup.  I thought she’d love it considering she’s a big fan of chicken, vegetables, and noodles.  She really didn’t enjoy the food, but she loved entertaining the other diners. 

Molly’s actual birthday was fun, but we couldn’t wait for Travis to get home so we could really celebrate.  More to come in the next post…

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