weekend fun-ish.

Parts of this past weekend were fun but parts were brutal.  Thank you daylight savings for contributing to the cause.  
Friday evening we started  with snuggles and sassy faces….

  

Saturday the boys went to the Lowes kids’ workshop and Joshua got to make his dream toy; a monster machine!  The girls and I spent the morning at home!
  

Later in the afternoon some family came over to watch basketball so Ede and I took the kiddos to the farm and then finished out the night at church!
   
    
 
Sunday rolled around very early.  The kids went to bed late on Saturday night due to church and that always leads to bad sleep; I think our first riser was awake at 5 am?? Aye.  It was kind of downhill from there.  Everyone was crabby, everyone was whining, lots of meltdowns, lots of tears….it was rough.
But as we were getting the kids ready for bed (above all of the noise) Greg and I had a revelation; when we have those kinds of days, it’s not because we are awful parents or because we have awful kids…its just part of life…part of being a parent and having kids.  We often try to solve the “issue” that causes the challenging moments but I think we have come to the conclusion that we don’t have to beat ourselves when we have really hard days (in the world of raising kids).  We learn from those days and that’s what’s important!  
So with that, here is a happy picture from our weekend; not because the whole weekend was perfect and great but because we are learning from the hard moments and celebrating the happy ones!
  

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funny friday

We seriously laughed and laughed at all the snapchat filters….aside from meeting Greg for lunch, and playing outside, this is what we did for the rest of the day (kidding…kind of)….
   
    
    
    
 
Joshua joined in on the fun but somehow I didn’t save his pics.   Oops!  #guesswewillhavetoplayagaintomorrow

  
Happy Friday!!!

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T&A removal–part 2

Alright, so when I left off I had shared all about pre-operation….
Morning of surgery we needed to be out the door by 7:15 and of course this was the morning Joshua decided to sleep in. We woke him up right before we had to leave and then headed to the car as soon as we had gathered all our things. The poor kid wasn’t able to eat or drink anything and since he is usually asking for breakfast before I even say goodnight, I was super concerned he would be really sad and frustrated that he couldn’t eat. But he never once asked for food or drink….I was really amazed.
 Unfortunately we ran into really awful traffic (which we hadn’t planned on) and our 20 minutes of buffer time wasn’t even enough to get us there on time; we arrived 15 minutes late, checked in, and almost immediately we were taken back to Pre-Op…I guess being late isn’t so bad?!!? Less wait??  

  
Once we were back in Pre-Op they took Joshua’s vitals, asked us some questions and then pretty quickly, they gave him an oral medication that made him relaxed and eventually really sleepy…again, I assumed he would give us a hard time because the medicine tastes really bad, but he drank it down like it was no big deal. He laid in the bed and watched TV and within 10-15 minutes he was pretty glassy-eyed and they told us they were ready to take him back. He looked over at me and I said “Hey buddy are you feeling sleepy??” to which he said, “Yeah, mama!” So I told him to close his eyes and take a little nap. He rolled on his side, cuddled with his stuffed kitty and his new toy car and off he went.

   
I held it together pretty well except for when the nurse was explaining some of the post surgery possibilities (i.e. some kids are so out of it after surgery that they don’t know who you are….) Thankful that Greg was there to not only support Joshua, but also me. After they wheeled Joshua back to the OR, Greg and I went back to the waiting area to get a pager so that we would be updated with when he was out of surgery. We ran down to grab something to eat (we purposely didn’t eat breakfast that morning since Joshy couldn’t) and then we went back upstairs to wait. Thankfully the T&A removal surgery is pretty fast; I think he was back in the OR for maybe an hour total? After he was out of surgery we were paged to meet with the doctor…she said that everything went extremely well! Before the surgery they had really only examined his tonsils (Which were enlarged)….they planned to remove the adenoids regardless (to avoid a potential second surgery in the future if they became an issue) but they didn’t know what his adenoids looked like until they were in there. Apparently his adenoids were more of an issues than his tonsils; the doctor said his adenoids were bigger than most any other she had seen…they were actually almost covering his nasal passage. Which makes total sense since he had such a hard time sleeping at night (snoring/sleep apnea/coughing). Before the surgery we were a little bit second guessing ourselves thinking, “well…what if it’s really not that bad; what if they get in there and there are no adenoid issues…” But the post-op consultation with the doctor really confirmed that we made the right decision for our little guy! We went back to the waiting area for another half hour or 45 minutes while he was in post-op waking up from anesthesia. My biggest concern was being able to be there right when he woke up and the assured me they were very good at knowing when to get parents to be there for their babies; sure enough they paged us, we went back, and he was just starting to move around a bit.
 He was still sleeping and didn’t really open his eyes for a while, but we were there with him, which I was so thankful for. He woke up slowly but normally; he was itchy (from the medications) and you could tell that he was feeling it when he swallowed, but he was able to take a sip of water and a bite of slushy pretty quickly. They moved us to an out patient recovery space which is where he finally woke up and was able to stay awake. We just sat with him and let him just rest….he watched some shows, and really was doing super well! 

  
 He downed 3 Bomb Pops, drank some water, and was talking and feeling really well! I was shocked and so were the nurses! But since everything was looking good, they got us packed up and sent us on our way!

  
   
   
 

thanks Van Fam for the balloons and goodie bag 🙂

 

I was a little hesitant to leave so quickly but they said he’s doing everything he should be doing, so no reason to stay. Off we went! We were maybe 10 minutes into our ride home and all the sudden he vomited ALL over. I had even put the puke bucket away because he was doing so well…bad choice. We stripped him down while we were driving down the highway, got him as clean as possible, and continued home. We got home and he was sad and tired and uncomfortable and wanted a lot of mommy snuggles. Throughout the course of the day he threw up a couple more times which we knew was normal and nothing alarming. We kept up on the pain meds, tried to encourage him to drink when he could and he even attempted to eat a little bit. We tucked him into bed around 7 pm and around 9 pm he woke up throwing up again. We brought him down to the couch so we could sit with him and over the course of the next hour he threw up at least 8-10 times. We called back to the hospital to see what we should do; he basically didn’t have anything left in his body and he was so very weak. The nurses on call told us they wanted us to come in to have him checked out, so we made the trek back to the hospital Children’s ER.  

  
Once we got back they took his vitals and between the time he was weighed earlier that morning (pre-op) to then, he had lost almost 4 pounds, which was shocking to me. They immediately knew he was extremely dehydrated so they hooked him up for some hydration, nausea medication, and more pain meds. We stayed there for 12 hours (well Joshy and I stayed; Greg went home to sleep a little bit) and in that time he spiked a fever which also needed to be addressed, but eventually everything seemed to be calming down so we were sent home once again.

   
 That day after we got home, was when the reality of this recovery process really set in. Joshua was in SO MUCH PAIN….he didn’t want to eat, he didn’t want to take his pain meds, he didn’t want me to leave his side, he didn’t want ANYONE ELSE to help let alone look or talk to him….it was brutal. I assumed Greg would be able to get back into the office the next day, but that was a foolish thought! Greg worked from home Friday and then we had the weekend and then I was SURE by Monday we’d be good to go. WRONG again. Ha! Pretty much it was brutal from February 10th (Wed) until the 21st/22nd. Every day was a struggle and really more stressful than I ever anticipated…mostly because he needed me constantly and I also had two other kids to take care of. We did A LOT of watching TV. Joshua would perk up in moments but as soon as pain meds were wearing off he would go back to misery.  

   
    
   
Around 8 days post surgery he started eating again….and this was about the same time we got a smile out of him since before the surgery.  EIGHT DAYS.  He slowly started eating but then once he got past the fear of it hurting, he couldn’t stop eating; like it’s now been almost a month since the surgery and he is still eating like he hasn’t eaten in years. That boy will eat 3 or 4 bowls of cereal, or a couple bowls of yogurt in the morning; asks for multiple snacks a day, gobbles up everything on his plate at all meals….as I have been saying, he’s making up for lost time.  

  
The last hurdle we ran into with recovery happened a little more than a week post surgery? Joshua woke up that morning and I noticed he had drainage coming out of his ear. That’s strange. Called back to the ENT who said that was not a normal and to make an appointment with our Pediatrician. Hauled all three kiddos into the office to find out that Joshua somehow got an ear infection post surgery which then ruptured his ear drum. REALLY? That too?? We got antibiotics to attack that problem and I would say it wasn’t until a few days after the antibiotics started did we see improvement.  
We sent Joshua back to school 2 weeks post surgery and I would say anytime earlier than that it would have been a disaster. They told us to expect 2-3 weeks of recovery but I assumed his recovery would have been quicker because he did so well before, during and right after surgery. Alas, we survived and even from the first night after surgery we were saying “Wow, there is such a huge difference in the way he sleeps; We are so glad we decided to do this surgery…” Around 3 weeks post surgery, out of the blue, Joshua said “Hey….my throat doesn’t hurt anymore…” I think he had gotten so used to the pain and was relatively shocked when he didn’t notice it!
This “routine” surgery is NO JOKE! But, all in all, we are glad we made the decision to do the T&A removal, and even more thankful that surgery went so well, and that we lived to see the other side of recovery!  

  

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Clara Ann :: 12 months 

Well folks, just for kicks, I’m going to say it again:::  I have no idea where this last year went and how quickly grew from a tiny 6 lb nugget to a happy, healthy 1 year old baby girl!  

  

Schedule:
Same schedule, same schedule. Thank you dear baby! By this age the big kids had already dropped down to one nap, but thank the good Lord, Clara baby still dreamily takes two consistent naps and doesn’t seem to be showing any signs of dropping soon…KNOCK. ON. WOOD. KNOCKING REALLY HARD.

6:30–Wake Up 

7:00–Breakfast

8:30-10:00– Bottle + Nap #1 

10:00–Wake

12:00–Lunch

1:30-3:00–Bottle + Nap #2 

3:00–Wake

5:00–Dinner

6:30/7:00–Bedtime Bottle + Goodnight
Eating:

Clara continues to gobble up pretty much anything we give her. I was trying to think about what we did differently with her than the big kids (because they definitely have always been pickier eaters in general) and I think the big difference is that with J + S, we always ate dinner (or any meal, really) when they were sleeping….I would eat breakfast when they napped in the morning, lunch when they napped in the afternoon, dinner when they were in bed…it was just much easier. So I think naturally the variety of foods we fed them were smaller because I wasn’t going to make intricate meals multiple times. With Clara we are now in a routine to eat as a whole family (for most meals anyway) so she is eating what we eat. I’m hoping that she continues to keep up these good habits…pretty please, baby!!!?? This month she has also started self-weaning from her bottles. I haven’t been in a huge rush to wean her but she’s kind of showing us that she’s ready to start cutting back. I have been cutting back the amounts in her first two bottles, and this up coming week I am going to drop her afternoon bottle completely. Then we’ll drop the morning bottle next, and finally the bedtime bottle. I know a lot of people cut the baby off at 12 months on the dot, but I’m ok with keeping her a “baby” just a little longer 🙂 She has been drinking whole milk from her sippy cup for a couple weeks now and she does just fine. She doesn’t have any aversion to it but she also doesn’t chug it. I am thinking that as we drop more of her bottle milk, that she’ll take more of her cup milk.
Sleeping:
Clara still naps two times a day and sleeps through the night. There has been the occasional nights where she wakes up crying; I am assuming it’s teeth as she usually goes back to bed if we soothe her for a few minutes, or give her the paci. Also there is the occasion when she will take a really short nap, but for the most part I can expect her to sleep 3 hours (between 2 naps) during the day, and 12 hours at night. Bless you, child!  
Likes:

  • Walking around with bags (the kids school bags are her favorite) on her shoulder and transporting her treasures…it’s adorable, really
  • Sitting at the kids’ table and coloring–I kid you not–she will sit there for a super long time and scribble on paper.  
  • Eating
  • Climbing up to the helper stools the big kids use and watching mommy cook
  • Waving bye bye to daddy when he drives away for work in the morning

Dislikes:

  • Sitting down in the bath
  • Being taken out of the bath
  • Taking medicine
  • Big kids taking toys from her (I don’t blame her)

Highlights:

  • Walking all over the place! She now uses walking as her main mode of transportation and is getting faster and faster every day. She is even getting pretty good at maneuvering toys out and about or turning corners and dodging big kids.  
  • Self feeding with silverware. She still has pretty bad aim, but she knows how to get things like yogurt or oatmeal onto the spoon and get it into her mouth…she has also used a fork on her own once or twice and has been able to stab the food with a little bit of help!  
  • More teething….I can now feel her molars (though the haven’t poked through the skin yet) 
  • A trip to Indy to visit daddy’s family and friends 

I know I make it sound like she is a dream baby….but seriously, she is.  We obviously have had our challenges over her first year but in general Clara is just a happy, happy baby girl!  
   
 

I cannot believe she is 12 months…1 year (more on these thoughts in a separate post).  We are so thankful for Clara Ann and the blessing she is in our lives!

   
 

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weekend fun

Man.  I really can’t remember the last “fun” weekend we have had.  Ha!  That sounds bad but seriously.  Between back to back ear infections for all 3 kids…back to back week long fevers for all kids…and then Joshua’s surgery/recovery…its been brutal.  Kind of shocked we have survived in one piece.
But, this weekend was fun and “normal”….hallelujah!

We started the weekend with playing in the snow!  The weather was gorgeous.  Snowy but warm sun!  

   
    

Then we got crazy on Saturday morning and made rainbow pancakes …

   

  

  
  

We played, ran some errands, had some stretches of one on one time with the kids, got ice cream with Aunt Ede and got lots of laundry done…
   
    
  

  

   

 

And probably the highlight??!  Watching the big kids run and splash through puddles and giggle and then do it over and over again…

  

Oh, and my handyman hubby installed a new light in the kitchen…and brought me fresh flowers!  Love him!

   

Thankful for a weekend of more laughs and smiles than tears and tantrums!  Just what we needed!
  

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T&A removal–part 1

Joshua used to be THE MOST sound sleeper. We always joked about how as soon as his head hit the pillow, we didn’t hear a peep out of him until 12 hours later…no tossing and turning, no waking up, just deep, deep sleep. Then at some point (I’m thinking sometime this summer?) we started noticing he wasn’t sleeping soundly. He was waking up at night and he just didn’t seem rested during the day. As the days passed, we noticed more things….he was snoring (and REALLY loudly) all night…he was constantly breathing through his mouth…he was falling asleep within seconds of getting in the car…he was coughing (like a dry cough) all the time…he was waking many times a night…he had some sleep apnea tendencies (though he never had a formal sleep study–just our observations)…he was so crabby and irritable and just always seemed unrested.  

It started getting really noticeable around Christmas time and I was randomly telling my sister about it. She consulted doctor Google and a lot of what she saw/read indicated that he definitely was having bouts of sleep apnea and that can be a result of the tonsils. I quickly checked in with a group of super mama’s (my Mom’s of Multiples group–they seriously have answers for EVERYTHING–such a wealth of knowledge) and very quickly I was getting responses to my inquiry. Confirming over and over that yes, this happened to my child, and yes they got their tonsils removed, and yes it made a WORLD of difference.  
I made an appointment with our pediatrician who did a quick exam of Joshua’s tonsils and didn’t notice anything super abnormal but recommended us to a pediatric ENT. I got a call the next day from them and they had an appointment cancellation for the following day so we could get in right away–I had anticipated needing to wait several weeks at least. I jumped on the appointment opening and in we went. The ENT took a look at Joshua’s tonsils and confirmed that they were larger than normal–large enough that she would recommend a T & A–Tonsillectomy and Adenoidectomy. The doctor said that typically if they remove one, they remove both to avoid the need to do a second surgery for the other after the fact. We could have shoved a camera down Joshua’s nose for her to check on his adenoids but since his tonsils already needed to come out, there was no need to look at his adenoids now; she would do that during the surgery.  

   
 

We scheduled surgery for a month later and held our breath that whole month hoping and praying that he didn’t get sick or a fever–if he had a fever over 101 we would have to reschedule. And at this point, we were barely getting any sleep due to his lack of sleep, so we just wanted to get the show on the road. Thankfully he stayed healthy enough to keep surgery for the scheduled date–February 10th!

Aunt Ede is a preschool director so she has a song and a book for every child related situation–including a Tonsillectomy. She found a book for Joshua that talks about a little boy named Danny who had to have his tonsils out; it was pretty descriptive and straight forward. I wasn’t planning to show it to Joshua until right before his surgery but he found it in the office and asked to read it; so we read it and didn’t make a big deal out of it. About 2 days before his actual surgery we started talking to him about how he has a hard time sleeping and how the doctor that looked in his mouth wants to take his tonsils out like Danny (the book) so that he can sleep better. We also discussed how he could eat lots of ice cream and popsicles like Danny and generally he was really understanding and ok with everything. We only gave him little bits of information as he needed them–I just didn’t want him to overthink things and then worry. He really did awesome with taking in the info, asking what he was curious about, but not dwelling on it!  

   
   

We ate pizza the night before surgery and just let him go to town–usually we would regulate the intake of pizza to intake of other things ratio, but that night we were like…eat whatever…fill up 🙂 At one point I said to Greg, “I kind of want to wake him up at 11 pm and feed him breakfast so he’s not so hungry in the morning….” and Joshy must have heard me and said, “No mama….silly….I can’t eat breakfast….” He was taking it all in AND keeping me in check 😉

Surgery day and recovery to come….
{Spoiler Alert} RECOVERY SUCKS

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big kids

The kids always look older after a haircut….this most recent cut is no exception!
We were waiting to go into their classroom yesterday and they just looked so “big.”  So I told them to smile so I could take a picture….
   
 
Gotta love the fake, cheesy smiles ;). These kids sure are growing and changing all the time!
  
Clara didn’t want to be left out of the picture taking action 🙂

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