Wednesday, December 26, 2007


I've often wondered why the mean people live so long, and the good ones die young. Grandpa was one of the good ones. And he lived a good long life. He went downhill the last several years, and the last time we saw him, he was very frail. I have those images in my mind, but I'm going to remember the good times.
This was in 1994, when he drove all the way from southern California to eastern Washington, just to be at my high school graduation. He then turned around, a month later, to come to my wedding. In fact, he was the only extended member of my family to be at my graduation.

He did that a lot. And I totally took it for granted. He came when Matthew was born, and later in the year when Matthew was dedicated.
I just wish I hadn't taken it for granted.

This was at his 80th birthday party. When some people reach the cranky stage. Not him. He was there, lifting Matthew up to help him blow out his candles. I wish my kids knew him better. But as Dillon said, I can tell him the stories about watermelons, and make them his famous fried potatoes. I guess it will have to do.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas

It's been a great Christmas this year.
First of all, Collin is wearing his contacts all day. He really likes them, and can even take them out all by himself. I'm a bit concerned that someday he'll just decide to take them out for no good reason. But so far, one has come out every day and he takes it to Matt and says he needs it put back in. He has yet to let me put them in. Although, he did let Matt put some artificial tear drops in today, so I think we are definitely getting there.
We bought ourselves six flags season passes, and have been there twice so far. Both times we froze. We went Saturday night and it was so windy. Miserable, really. I can't wait to go when it is warmer.
We had made plans with some friends to take all the kids to see Alvin and the Chipmunks today, so decided we needed to do our big turkey dinner on Christmas Eve. We had those same friends over to eat and play games with us yesterday. It was so great. It makes life so much better to have good friends to share your time with. It also makes being far away from family much easier.
After they went home, we opened our family gifts. It was really great. We got mostly things we can do as a family. I love it. I made Matt a picture with all the kids' handprints on it. He had one from when we only had 3 kids, and always wanted me to add Zachy. So I made it with all five, finally.
My mom got us a new microwave. Microwaves older than 15 years can reset Zachy's pacemaker. Ours was questionable. We've had it 14 years, and have no idea if it was made 15 years ago or not. It's nice to just be safe. I don't know what to do with our old one though. It's in perfect condition, and seems silly to just donate to goodwill. Wish I knew someone who needed one.
Last night, Santa came to our house. And what did he bring? Why a Wii, of course. We are all so excited to have it! We love it. Great fun.
Today, we saw Alvin and the Chipmunks. It was cute. I've always been a fan of Theodore. So cute and cuddly. I think everyone in the city was there!
In all, it's been a really great Christmas.
But with happiness, always seems to come sadness.
Yesterday afternoon, my grandpa passed away. It was one of those things where it was good for him to die, but not for those of us who love him. He felt like he lived a good long life, and was really ready to go. But, we will miss him. Especially my dad. He didn't only lose his dad, but his best friend too. So if you could, would you just pray for him. He's really doing well. He knows it was time, but it's still hard to lose someone you love so much.
Also, I've been thinking all day, that now the holidays are over. Now Zachy's surgery will be here before we know it. And honestly, I don't want to go there. I have nothing to look forward to, to get my mind off it. I know we'll get through this, and everything will be ok. But there are always risks. And the future is not certain. And so, as a mommy, I worry. And...I pray. It's the only thing that gets me through.
OK, I've rambled far too long. I hope you all had a woderful Christmas.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Laundry Woes

As you can imagine, in a family of 7, there is a lot of laundry.
In our old house, I just did random laundry every day. I never sort, I just don't have the time.
Since we've moved, I've tried to change things up a bit.
I basically do laundry by room. This gives me 4 days of personal laundry, and 2 days to do sheets and other random laundry. I also do diapers twice a week.
It doesn't seem to be working out too well. I don't know why. Maybe because by the time I get to Collin and Zachy's room, they have a ton to do. And forget my room. That includes Emily's laundry, so that is an all day chore.
So my question is for those of you with large families. What is your routine like? What works for you? Is there a tried and true method that you would like to pass on to me. I'm up for anything to make this neverending chore a bit easier.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Praise the Lord

Tonight, Collin finished his dinner and said, "ok, I'm ready, put my contacts in" And Matt did.
Hopefully, tomorrow we'll get them in earlier in the day!

I just want to cry

Collin refuses to let us put the contacts in. All day I've been fighting him. No amount of bribary is working.
He says he just wants to go to heaven now so that his eyes will work. *Sob*

Forgot to mention

I didn't get to mention earlier that Em is waving now. It is super cute. She also gives kisses. How is my baby so cute??

Finally, that update I promised you

I promised an update, so here it is.
Last week, I celebrated my 32nd birthday. I have no idea how I got so old. I don't feel 32, but I catch glimpses of myself in the mirror and think I look really old. I have been plucking white eyebrows lately. *sigh* Happens to the best of us, I suppose.
Also, Dillon had an orthodontist appointment last week. That went fine, but I asked the dr to look at Matthew's mouth and see if his permanent teeth were trying to come in like I was suspecting. Indeed, they are. He needs to have 9 teeth pulled. NINE! Poor thing. So we are waiting on the oral surgery place on base. They have to look at his records and decide if he is a case they can take right now. If not, we go on a waiting list. I hope they can just get in and get it done. One less thing to worry about!
Collin and Emily also had eye dr appointments last week. Em's eyes look great. Next spring, they'll dilate her again and check to be sure she isn't following Collin's pattern. We also discussed putting Collin in contacts.
His glasses make everything up close teeny tiny to him. So she said she'd refer him, and see what we could do.
We went yesterday. The dr told me he was really lukewarm about doing anything because his astigmatism was so bad. He said if anything were to work, it would be a really long road and definitely custom made lenses.
He started doing all his measurements and started saying, "now this is really unusual" I chuckled, because that is what we always hear regarding our kids. The astigmatism on the exterior and interior don't match. This did something that caused them to be able to take contacts right off the shelf, put them in his eyes and cause him to see. He can see so well with them. There is no astigmatism correction right now. In January we will go back and get glasses that will correct the astigmatism. However, when they were testing lenses, over the contacts, he actually saw better without the correction than with it. It's totally wild. And we know that it is a miracle. We went from his eyes being so bad that there really was no hope besides going to the institute for the blind to blow up all his school for him, to pulling a pair of contacts off the shelf right there. All night, I had tears in my eyes as he did things he'd never done before. It was so great.
Today, on the other hand, he refuses to let me put them in. I remember writing about him hating his glasses and wondering if he'd ever wear them. And now we can't get them off. I've said for awhile that as soon as he realizes they help, we'll have a hard time getting the contacts off. We just have to get to that point.
OK, Em is screaming at me, so my time is up. Pray that we get them in!!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Musical Monday

OK, Cory over at Roosmom is doing a musical monday meme these days.
Today's was to post your favorite soundtrack video.'s mine! I LOVE LOVE LOVE Grease and Grease 2.

Friday, December 14, 2007

I need some time!!

I have lots to write about.
I had a birthday! And we went to a great party! And some kids had drs appointments.
And I want to write about all of it...but I just don't have the time.
Emily cut a tooth, and life was great..for a few days. Now, it's partner is trying to make it's entrance, and things are not so great.
I promise, dear readers, I will be back, soon, to tell you all about the week.

HEHE, it just occurred to me that y'all are going to think it's really exciting, and I assure you, it isn't. But alas, I'll update anyway!

Saturday, December 8, 2007


Back in high school, I bought the "It's a Cow Christmas" cassette tape.
How I loved that tape. Matt loved it too. We listened to it every year.
Then, at some point, we lost it. And we miss it!
You can't buy it anymore. This always happens with things I love. Take for instance the 80s game Dark Tower. My sister and I spent many hours playing that game when we were kids.
I decided one day that it would be great to introduce my kids to it. They don't make it either. In fact, it is now a huge collector's item, selling for over $300.
Lucky for my kids, my mom kept ours. So for Matthew's birthday, he received the game, and he loves it too.
I know my kids would love the cow christmas. Why can't I find it though? I could buy it on ebay for a chunk of change, but is it worth it? I just don't know.
I wish that the great things in life would just continue to be made for all time!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

OH! I forgot to tell y'all!!

I ordered Matt and me Phantom of the Opera tickets yesterday!
The traveling show will be here in February and March.
I am SO SO SO excited!!!

Clearing something up, and some funnies

Some of you have asked me about Zachy's surgery and how it will be done.
If all goes according to plan, this will NOT be through the breastbone.
They will make a little incision by the pectoral muscle and put the generator under the muscle. Then they will thread the leads in through his veins.
The catch here is that there, apparently, is no such thing as a "pediatric" pacemaker. So we are dealing with adult size leads. And 4 year old size veins. The card seems to think that Z's veins are big and wide open, but they won't know until they get in there if they are big enough.
But, as of right now, the plan is to NOT open his chest, just a small pocket area.

When I call my mom, her husband will sometimes answer. It goes like this.
"Dave K____"
"Dave K____, is Cathy K_____ there?"
I say that everytime he answers like.
Collin has been walking around today saying,
"Dave K____ is Cavity K____ there?"
So cute.

Zachy always says, "mommy, can you help me?" then does whatever it is he needed help with and says, "nebermind" I know this is common, but it sound so stinking cute coming out of his mouth.


I thought I had more funny things to tell you, but I guess not. Hope you're having a great week.

Monday, December 3, 2007

God is so good

I don't believe in coincidences. I believe God is in control of all things.
Today, I was getting ready to make some stuffing for Emily.
She, of course, crawled in the kitchen after me, and started pulling on my legs.
Now, I really didn't want to pick her up. I really wanted to get water on the stove to boil. I just needed to get the measuring cup and put it on..real quick.
But instead, I picked her up.
I then, opened the cupboard above the stove to get the measuring cup out. A big, glass, measuring cup.
The cookbooks on the other side and fallen down, pushing the measuring cups over. When I opened the cupboard, the cups came falling down, shattering into a million pieces...right where Emily had been sitting.
Instead, of being covered in glass, she was safe in my arms.
Thank you, God, for always looking out for even the smallest of us.

It's set

January 16, 2008..Zach will get his pacemaker.
It was awful to have that be the first thing I had to write in my new calendar, so I had to quickly write in some birthdays!
We're trying hard not to talk about it that much, because after all, we are dealing with a child here, not a pacemaker. But the other day we said something about God loving Zach, and he said, "yes, and he gave me a special heart, JUST ME" And he found all his doctor stuff and has been walking around with the stethoscope around his neck, wearing latex gloves, saying, "can I please fix your heart?" So yeah...he knows something is up.
BUT..for now..tis the season to count our blessings.
And we are so very blessed.
Zach, for all intents and purposes, is really really healthy. As are the rest of the kids. They are all such a joy.
Emily continues to be very high needs though. Not that this is bad. I do know it will pass, but's rough. Her upper right front tooth is finally starting to poke through. It has been so swollen lately, and I'm hoping it will make for a happier girl. We'll see. I think it's wishful thinking, but I will wish anyway.
As usual, she is pulling on my legs, and my time is up. Someday, I'll post and not be interrupted by a crab apple crying or pulling on me!

Friday, November 30, 2007

How to make him understand?

I'm really struggling with this right now. How do we help Zach understand why he will need surgery? How do we help him understand why he will be able to feel something inside his body?
We've told him a million times that God gave him a special heart, but that doesn't help when it comes to pain.
To him, he seems fine. He isn't sick, or hurting, or anything like that. Just tired. But that doesn't seem to bother him too much!
I just don't know. He's going to hurt. And he's not going to understand why. That's the worst part.
Funny thing, after he was done with the holter monitor, he looked at me and said, "Collin can wear the stickers next time" He was mad that they hurt coming off and wasn't going to do it again...Collin could. So funny.
Yes, I know the answer is that he won't understand. But still...I wish he could.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Lonely ol blog

I feel the need to write, only I don't know what to write about.
While unpacking boxes, I came across all my old journal entries. All of them since 2001. And I started reading.
I have grown so much in these last 7 years, changed so much, and yet, I'm still little ol me. But, I actually had something to say back then. Now, I struggle to find anything to fill this blog with. Partly, I'm a bit worried about who will find me. But I'm not going to let that run my life.
I just really feel as if I have nothing to say. So, I bore you with rambly boring posts. Lucky you!
Last night, I went to a Mended Little Hearts meeting. Thanks Maria, for telling me about it. It really is so great. I want to be part of this group so much. The problem is, they meet on Wednesday nights. Just once a month. But still, I'm committed to Adventurers. I'm the director, after all. It's really perplexing me. How might I be able to make it work. They do great things like hospital visitation. That's something I'd love to get in on. When Zach was born, logically, we knew we weren't alone, but there was no one around. No one ever came to sit with us and say, "We've been here...we know how you will be alright" In fact, it wasn't until we moved here that we met other heart parents. So, yeah, it's something I'd really like to do. Because it's lonely. And scary.
I'm waiting on the scheduling lady to call me back to schedule Zach's pacemaker surgery. We're doing it in January. Too soon for me. But, I know he'll be ok. God will take care of him. He always does.
Emily continues to be congested. The people who lived here before didn't have animals, so now I'm totally stumped. Because we live closer to the army post now, we've asked to change their pediatrician to one on post. Maybe the change will bring some answers with it. We'll see. For now, she is super needy, and super fussy.
And, she's now awake, so my moment of peace is over.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Holter results

We talked with the electrophysiologist yesterday. That's a big fancy word for cardiologist who specializes in pacemakers.
The results of the holter were good. Apparently, when the heart starts to slow down, it will start having spurts of rapid rates (tachycardia) in with the slow rates(bradycardia). Thankfully, Zachy hasn't gotten the tachy...yet. Once that happens, they say it is much harder to correct with a pacemaker.
So we are at a good point to pace. His heart, on average, beats 20 beats slower than it should. With it dropping into the 30s while he sleeps. He also has junctional rhthym. Both of these are pretty easily correctable with a pacemaker.
At this point, we have been given the option of pacing now or waiting. He will have to be paced soon anyway, and if we wait, we run the risk of waiting too long. Right now, his heart is swollen. We can correct that with a normal rhythm, but again, if we wait too long, it won't go back to it's correct size.
So, really, while we have the option to wait, it is best to proceed with the pacemaker.
We are looking at the second half of January. The kids are all in gymnastics, and we want him to finish out this session, which ends the 19th of January. He loves it so much, we can't bear to keep him from it.
As for me..I'm kind of having a hard time. It was one thing to talk about it before the holter. I think I was hoping they'd say it all looked great, no need to pace. But no such luck. Now it's real. And it's hard.
Logically, I know he'll be fine. But still...he's my baby. And there's always a risk. And it's scary!
I have faith that God will take care of him, and that's all I need. I just need to push any negatives out of my head.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

That was quick

We are back up and running! Woohoo!!
This has been the best move ever.
First, we love our new house. And are actually sad that we are just renting it for two years!
Second, if you ever have the chance to have movers come and pack you up and move you, I recommend it highly. This is the way to go. Pack in one day, move in the next.
We are settling in nicely. I almost have the kitchen unpacked, which always seems to be the hardest for me. It's tough trying to find a place for everything. I actually have plenty of room for all our "stuff" at this house. I was worried that the kitchen was a bit small, but in reality, it's big enough.
Matt is off for thanksgiving and Friday this week, so we will have a good long weekend to, hopefully, finish up.
Tomorrow, we have to go to our old house and clean it up for our final inspection on Monday morning. I'll tell ya, I could do without this part. Next time, I think we may hire cleaners.
So that's us right now..unpacking in a great new house.
Oh and great news...the family behind us has 6 kids and they homeschool. How cool is that??
Alrighty, I'm off to bed. Nighty night.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Ta Ta For Now

I just restarted this blog, now I'm leaving it! At least I warned you!
The packers come tomorrow to pack us all up. That includes the computer because we're stuck in the stone ages and don't have a laptop.
We are set to get internet service started on Friday, but who knows when we'll get to the computer. Soon, rather than later, I'm sure.
In the meantime, please say a little prayer for Z.
He wears his holter monitor tomorrow. We are hoping that it won't show anything unexpected and that we can wait on the pacemaker until after the holidays. Of course, my mom thinks the drs need to come up with a better answer than a pacemaker! I wish.
Alrighty dear readers, I'll see you on the flip side! Have a wonderful week.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007


As some of you know, my last blog is now gone.
This is due to some unfortunate circumstances that took place in real life. In an effort to be a bit hard to find I have renamed my blog and moved. Hopefully, it works!
Since we last "spoke" so much has happened.
First, we got news that we have to move. They are taking over our buildings and sending us to civilian housing. This is actually great, it was just really short notice and at a very stressful time in our lives. But, we will get through it. We move next week. This may the first post and last for awhile during the move. Hopefully not!
In other major news, we found out that Z needs to get a pacemaker. His heart is swelling. It's a huge bummer. Last year we were told that his heart was looking great. Now, not so much.
Thankfully, it isn't urgent, so we get to have the holidays and then in January or February he'll be getting paced.
There is so much going on, and yet I can't get it out. I've just spent a good long while setting this blog up, and now I'm tired, but alas, I'm back.
Hope you didn't miss me too bad!!

Saturday, September 29, 2007


After seven long weeks, Matt is back where he belongs. Right here at home.
Zachy said to him tonight, "Daddy, can you please stay with us?" It was so cute. They are so happy to have him home. Me too.
I totally admire single moms. This last 7 weeks was truly one of the hardest things I've ever done.
I assumed that since I got through him working while going to school, that it would be pie. Oh my, it so wasn't. It was so very, very hard.
But..I survived. As my neighbor said (her hubby came home from Iraq today, hooray!) it makes you realize just how strong you are.
And now I'm ready to crash.
I think we're going to six flags tomorrow, so no rest for us!
I'm so happy to have him home. :-)

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Sunday, September 16, 2007

The inevitable problem with blogging

I've seen it happen at so many blogs.
It's happened here.
People think that, because they read your blog, they know all there is to know about you.
You may think that there couldn't possibly be more to my life than what I write. The reality is, you are granted a tiny glimpse into my life. That doesn't mean you know me.
Even our far away family will tell you that they don't really know us anymore, now that they don't have regular contact with us. They don't know what our kids are into, they don't know what Matt and I enjoy doing, what shows we watch, etc. That comes from a personal, daily relationship with a person.
Therefore, for a reader to have any kind of strong opinion about me and my family, is crazy.
You may think you know what is best for my kids. But you don't even know my kids. Meeting them once or twice, if at all, is far from knowing them.
I think it is so easy to get sucked into that trap of thinking I'm telling you every detail of our lives. That I'm telling you every quirk the kids have, every personality trait. But no. You really don't know much.
Please, try to refrain from judging me, based on what you read here. Based on what you think would surely be best for my family.
The bottom line is this...God gave our kids to Matt and me. He didn't give them to you. He is guiding us in bringing them up. Please, don't question what we do with them. Rest assured that we pray daily about how we bring them up, and feel very guided to do the things we do.
Thank you for taking this post into consideration before you email me, or spout off to someone else about us.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Big Heavy Sigh

It's one of those nights.
A big, heavy sigh kind of night.
I'm missing Matt fiercely.
Yes, I have 5 kids to keep me busy. But that doesn't mean I'm not longing for Matt to be home.
Three weeks down. Four to go. Seems like an eternity.

Sunday, September 2, 2007


I can't even begin to tell you how much I love these kids.
I have been blessed far more than I deserve.

Just a little posty post

Just to say that all is well here.
We are finishing week three without Matt. Four more to go.
We had major van issues on Tuesday, that I'm proud to say we came through with flying colors. But it would have been MUCH easier with Matt around.
The kids started school this last week and my oh my are we busy.
They also started gymnastics last week. They all love it.
In general, we've just been really busy with life.
I, for the life of me, cannot figure out how mom's with loads of kids are able to update their blogs often. I'm struggling to find a minute or two to myself. And to put pictures up? Oh my.
Emmie is 6 months old tomorrow. How in the world did that happen? When my mom left she said, "see you when you're walking" and I laughed and said, "don't say that, that can't be true" But alas, it's already been 6 months since they were here. And 2 months since my inlaws were here. Time's a flyin! So, unless my mom gets her tookus out here soon, Emmie may well be walking when she sees here next.
We have a birthday party to go to this afternoon, so I'm off!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Working on a new layout

And it all takes time. This is as far as it goes today. For now anyway.
I got tired of the green.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Happy kids

My dad is here.
He took his stuff up to his room and promptly pulled out a TMX Elmo. Collin and Zachy think it's pretty cool.
Then he came downstairs, stripped off his shirt and declared to the boys that it was time to pretend we're in the tropics.
In case you don't know, we're in the middle of tropical depression Erin. The boys were beyond thrilled to run outside in the rain.
Next time I looked, they were all on the trampoline, with Papa shooting them high in the air. I thought for sure they'd soar right over the net.
Then they decided they just had to swim in the rain. And much to their delight, papa hopped right in with them.
He's just like a big kid. And the real kids couldn't be happier.

Thursday, August 16, 2007


Oh my. I stink at updating lately. I just don't have the gumption to sit and write.
Life is feeling pretty monotonous lately, so I don't write.
But alas!! CHANGES!!
First change, if you recall, we should be in Colorado right now. Well, as luck would have it, our plans had to change, and now Matt is in Colorado, and the kids and I are here. For seven long weeks. Although, we already have almost one under our belts.
I'm not complaining. I am so thankful that he is only in Colorado, and only for seven weeks. It's much better than Iraq!
Other changes include Emily. She is now on Singulair, in an effort to stop this coughing. The constant coughing. I'm thinking the pulmonologist thinks I'm just batty at this point. Because, of course, she doesn't cough around him. However, when the pastor's wife holds her, she manages to cough up phlegm on her. Lovely, indeed. It is all so very frustrating. If the Singulair doesn't help in about three weeks, then he wants to scope her and make sure she is anatomically correct. Ha, that sounds funny. But you get my point.
Em is now 5 months and 2 weeks, she started sitting up yesterday. All by her self. Such a big girl! And a big event like that, calls for a big celebration. So we celebrated today by giving her her first food! MMMMMM, she loved her bananas!
Normally, I'm a strict nothing-but-breatmilk-for-the-first-six-months type of mama, but she was so ready. She wanted to gobble everything up that went in my mouth!
And onto a totally different dad is coming to visit this weekend. We are all so excited. We really enjoy having visitors in these parts. Probably because we are so all alone here. But it's really ok. We have each other, and that's all that matters.
The school books have started to roll in. And the kids are getting pretty excited about school starting. As usual, I'm hoping to do a better job this year than last! I say that every year, and I think I do better every year!
I started this post talking about changes, but got sidetracked. Sorry. I have to go get to cleaning.

Yep, we sure were messy!

Matthew was taking pictures today.

Some pics from the birthday party

Friday, August 10, 2007

Happy Birthday

Dear sweet Collin! Happy birthday to you!
I cannot believe how fast the last 6 years have gone! How you have enriched our lives so much. You make me smile so many times during the day. Your smile is so contagious.
I'm so glad God gave you to us! We are the luckiest parents alive!
I love you more than words can say.
Happy Happy Birthday.

Sunday, August 5, 2007


Our lives are molded and shaped by all the events in our lives.
Whether they be good or bad events, they form us.
I've had many events in my life. Once, I was asked to do the sound effects for the community theater's production of South Pacific. It was there, that I met Matt. That small event, would pave the way for the rest of my life.
Because of that play, my life has changed in so many ways.
I've found out that I am much stronger than I ever imagined I could be. I think I can survive just about anything.
Four years ago, I was about to embark on a huge life changing event.
The birth of each of my five children, has changed my life.
At this time, four years ago, I was going through my first drug free labor. It was induced with Pit, so I guess it wasn't completely drug free. And once, I had a shot of nubane, just to gather my senses.
The birth of Zachary, was a pain I had never experienced. But the physical pain, was nothing compared to the pain my heart would feel over the next couple of days.
You all know the story. I won't bore you with it.
Every year since then, Zachy has grown to be an amazing person. He makes me laugh so much. And frustrates me all at the same time. He is so giving with his love and kisses.
I couldn't ask for more, he is my Zachy.
Happy Birthday sweet, sweet boy. You have shaped me in only a way you could. I love you more than you can ever imagine.

Monday, July 9, 2007

I'm not dead!

I've been asked if I'm still alive, and the answer is YES! Aren't you so glad?
So much has happened since my last update, I don't know where to start.
Maybe I'll do the short version! Wait, there's no such thing!
Ok, so Matt's parents came to visit the third week of June. We had such a great time! It was sad to see them go. We did all kinds of fun things like the Alamo, and Sea World, and even a mission or two. Unfortunately, the day we did the Alamo and Riverwalk it was sooo hot. It was pretty miserable. But we made the best of it anyway. Then a couple days it poured! Phooey! We never did make it down to the coast. This was a huge bummer. When we lived in Ohio, Matt's parents came to visit and we were going to go to Niagara Falls, but we had a blizzard! This time the rain ruined things. Oh yes, and a baby who HATES the carseat! Maybe next time they come we'll make it down there!
As for said baby...she is doing great! The night Matt's parents got in we got a new to us couch and love seat. Suddenly, Em's breathing got better! Then there was a definite pattern to her crying. She cried when her meds for the reflux wore off. But we quit the breathing treatments and she has done great. We know we are dealing with an allergy for sure now. She has started to roll over now, but I don't put her down too much because when she is down on the ground (even on a blanket) her face is breaking out.
Stupid dog, I seriously cannot get rid of her. No one will take her. The humane societies are all full. I have no idea how to get rid of her, short of taking her to the country and dumping her...which I wouldn't do! She has to go though. We are on the waiting list at a couple humane societies, so pray for an opening for us!
Emily sees the pulmonologist on Monday, and we are going to keep that appointment. We just finished up VBS, it was a wild west theme and we had hay and all sorts of horse stuff in the chapel. Em's breathing was bad then. So, we need to see how to control all of this.
She saw the gastro who said it sounded like we were doing a good job controlling the reflux, which I agree about.
We also saw a new ped for her four month check. I really liked her, even if she wasn't that pro breastfeeding! Oh well. Can't win them all.
Matthew finished up pathfinders and was awarded pathfinder of the year. YAY MATTHEW!! So Matthew was pathfinder of the year, Dill was adventurer of the year, and Collin was Eager Beaver of the year. All their hard work paid off for them, and we're so proud!
In August we are headed to Colorado Springs for 6 weeks. It will be so nice to have a break from Texas for awhile. They needed a temporary audiologist, so Matt volunteered to go. Fun times!
Let's see..what else? I don't know. How abot some cute poop stories??
Zachy insists on getting naked to poop, and we still have to wipe his bottom. So he called for us to come wipe him. When Matt walked in, Zachy was sitting on the pot, in the classic meditation stance...heels together, elbows resting on his knees, middle finger and thumb together..chanting "ummmm..yucka yucka yucka..ummmm..yucka yucka yucka yucka" So funny!
The week of VBS, Collin was having some intestinal issues. He was in the bathroom when I heard, "oh no..I pooped a little in my pants" Then a horrified, "OH DEAR" I asked what was wrong, "it's melted" he replied!! It was just a tad in his pants, by the way.
The melted poop carried on for several days. I had to stop by Family Christian Book store on my way to church one night. And Collin said, "I have to poop, and I know it will be melted" So we hurry to the bathroom. It was one with just one toilet and sink. It took awhile so I was standing there nursing Emily. He is pooping, while someone is rattling on the door. I hollar out that someone is in the bathroom. It was Zachy. He had to go. He had to go now or else he was going to poop his pants! His had melted by this time as well. So, I'm standing there, nursing Em, telling Collin to take a break and let Zachy sit down so Zachy doesn't poop his pants. Collin freaked out that he would then poop his pants. I'm trying to plead with him to get up so Zach won't poop his pants. It was mighty comical I'm sure. But no one pooped their pants. When I opened the door, there was a line of people waiting to use the bathroom! HOW EMBARASSING!
Anyway, that's poop stories, and my update. Have a great week!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Creative Memories

Hey all! I'm having a creative memories party at my house next Thursday. I wish you all could be there. I have never used creative memories for scrapping, but it looks like they have really expanded their products. Go have a look. You can order for my party on the internet. Just let me know if I can help you!

Just a quick update

ok real quick like...Em saw the dr on Monday. He agreed with the other dr that she needs to be seen by a pulmunologist and a gastro doc. She is scheduled to see the gastro doc on July 3. Still waiting on the pulmunology appt. He also ordered allergy testing, but I'm not holding my breath that they will be conclusive. They did a nasal wash to rule out RSV as well. It was negative. They upped her breathing treatments to twice a day.
So now we just wait, I guess. *sigh* It's really pain, I wish we had answers, now.
OK, off to clean, must get ready for the in law visit.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

I feel like I'm running on one brain cell

OK, so a few people have emailed me and asked me to update.
I realize it's been a long time, I just have a lot happening right now.
First and foremost is Emily.
What is wrong with my precious baby?
As you all know, she has been very congested, for...oh..ever.
The last time I posted, I said that she had her upper GI and did not have reflux. Well, the dr called me to tell me these results. I was so upset. I said, "then tell my why she is so congested and wheezing so badly!" He said he didn't know, but he could tell I wanted her to be seen again, and since it was going to be memorial day weekend, I could bring her in on Friday.
I was all prepared for this meeting. I took video of her breathing so he could see that she was really retracting and trying hard to breathe. It wasn't needed. When the nurse called us back, she freaked. She pulled the dr out of the room he was in and said he had to look at her NOW. They immediately started a breathing treatment. After two treatments, she was still wheezing, but not so bad that she needed to stay there. He told me at that point that the upper GI had said she didn't have reflux, but based on what I had said and her symptoms, he was going to treat her anyway. So we left with meds and a new nebulizer to treat her every 4 hours.
Over the weekend her cying escalated. There was no consoling her. It was awful.
On Tuesday when we went back in, the dr hung his face in his hands and said, "something is wrong with your baby, and I don't know what" He then told me she would be sent to a pulmunologist and gastroenterologist. Finally, we'd be getting somewhere.
That Saturday, we got a letter in the mail announcing the drs retirement, stating he'd be seeing no more patients.
Now, I had been fed up with him because this has been going on so long and he really hasn't helped much. In fact, I was ready to find a new dr after this ordeal was over. This put us in a pinch.
I decided to make the specialist appointments and work on switching her provider. Little did I know that that would be impossible. The gastro dr is booking in March! March folks. She'll be a year old. The pulmunologist can't see her till the end of July.
Thankfully, I was able to call Tricare and tell them what is going on. They got her a PCM immediately, and she has an appointment on Monday. I didn't like our former military dr experiences, so I'm praying it goes better this time.
She is still on breathing treatments daily, and still wheezes and is horribly congested.
Through all of this, she tries very hard to be a happy baby. She smiles and I just know a laugh is in there somewhere.
Dillon and Collin had their ending program for adventurers last Saturday. Dillon got Adventurer of the year. We were pretty proud of him!!
Last Sunday, we took Dillon to camp. He was there for the week. I missed him terribly. He had a great time.
We picked him up today and dropped Matthew off for his week. He is totally excited because he gets to do waterskiing this year. Fun times.
Last week I spent dejunking the kid rooms. Everything is nice and in place now. We'll see how long that lasts.
Also, on Thursday, Collin lost his first tooth!
This week my in laws are coming to visit. We are very excited about it, and plan to do lots of fun stuff with them.
In our free time, we are busy working on VBS. It is going to be a huge success this year. We are holding it the last week in June.
I'll be so glad when July hits. No plans, so far. It will be nice to stop being so hectic!
So there you have it, a big long entry from asked for it!!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

More Emily Cuteness

First off, let me say that Em had her upper GI this morning and she does NOT have reflux. Which is oh so frustrating for me. It puts us right back at square one. Something is wrong with my baby, and I don't know what. GRRRRRR
Anyway, here are some pictures from last night, Matthew and Dillon were playing with her trying to get her to smile.

Monday, May 21, 2007

An answer...finally..and some pics

So Emily just seemed to be getting sicker and sicker. She was constantly choking and gagging. Starting last Wednesday, she was throwing up every morning. On Sunday, her breathing got pretty labored. I decided it was time to see the dr. So we went to the ER yesterday. And the dr said, "she has reflux". He said that she would need an upper GI but that he could tell it was reflux. He started her on pepcid yesterday, and already she is improving. Still really congested, but not nearly as fussy.
Today, we followed up with the ped and she now has an upper GI scheduled for Wednesday morning. I hope it is simple. And I hope we get the answer to all of her misery, once and for all.
I was asked to put some more pictures of her up here, but the reality is, we don't have many. Why? Because she is constantly crying and in our arms, or sleeping. But you've seen lots of sleeping pics. So tonight we got some other pics. And here they are, along with some of Collin, just because he suddenly seems so grown up to me.
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I don't know if you can tell in this picture that she is trying to get her jammies in her mouth. Her hands are constantly in her mouth, and she puts anything she can get her hands on in it. It's awfully cute!
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Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
This is a picture from a mother's day tea that Collin's adventurers class put on. They sang a few songs for us and told us about their favorite Bible friend. Collin's was Jesus. No surprise there! :-)

Tuesday, May 8, 2007


OK, not really the wilderness, but at one of the missions, there was a short nature trail along the river. It was the prettiest place I've ever seen in Texas. There were millions of caterpillars, and if you stood still, poop would fall on your head. You could hear the poop hitting the leaves. It was really wierd.

Mission fun

I didn't bring the camera on our first day. So here are some pictures from the last two missions we went to. Unfortunately, they were the most rubbled of the missions. Someday, I'll get pictures of the other ones.
What struck me the most about these, is that they are still working churches. And in the one with the well, there are actually still francsicans living there.

Our usual night

Here are some pictures of our usual night. I don't know what we ever did without an exercise ball in the past!

Hail Storm

Awhile ago, there was a huge hail storm. It's been pretty stormy around here lately. In fact, a couple of weeks ago we sat through a tornado warning siren going off. We didn't know it was for a tornado, but heard an announcement saying to seek shelter. Now we know.

I'm having a bad day

I'm sure I've titled posts that way before, but it's been awhile!
Things here have been so crazy. We are still trying to find a home for Sadie. Who knew this could be so hard??
On Sabbath, we went over to some new friends' house, who have no dander. Emily did great. She didn't cry, and she wasn't stuffy, and she smiled like mad at their baby boy.
I honestly just want to move the heck out of here, and go somewhere with hardwood floors. I hate hardwood floors, but this house is probably packed full of dander and who knows what else. It seems nearly impossible to move though.
Zachy is acting up. I know he is still dealing with not being the baby, but he is being awful. Last night he flooded the bathroom with water and shampoo. Earlier today, he dumped the entire gallon of milk on the ground. *sigh* He is really testing me.
This morning I thought that Emily and I were soaking from a leaky breast, but no...Zachy had come into our bed this morning and his goodnight leaked everywhere.
It was super windy last night, and it uprooted our canvas gazebo thingie, bent the metal nearly in half, it's toast.
It's only noontime and it's been a rough morning. Hopefully things improve this afternoon.
In good news, Dillon finished all his math today. We are so close to being done with the school year. Matthew has one more math lesson. They are done with their grammar. There is no time limit on history, so we'll stop that soon. We've taken a detour from the regular history, and have started to learn about the missions here. We went to them on Thursday and Friday, and the kids had a blast. I was shocked, I thought they'd be bored.
That reminds me, I have some pictures I need to post from there. OK, no more complaining about the to upload pics.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007


I don't know when I'll be back in the swing of things.
Last night was awful. Crying. Crying. Crying.
In fact, at one point I was just ready to go to the ER. She finally stopped.
Something hurts.
Tonight is better though.
I think she is actually asleep in there with I'm off to bed.

Sunday, April 29, 2007


I am so happy!! Yesterday, while we were killing time, Emily started smiling huge smiles! Over and over and over! I was almost in tears. How sad is that? I was just so happy to see her look happy.
I'm thinking there may be something wrong with her tummy. I'm going to order some gripe water this week. She is really spitty, and when she burps, it makes her cry. I think her tummy just hurts.
In completely unrelated news, we now have a new dryer. Matt changed the heating element in the old one, and it worked long enough for me to get caught up on the laundry. So, we said to heck with it and bought a new one. We also bought an extended warranty, so we have a 4 year warranty now. At least that guarantees us 4 years of use, which is much more than we got with this one!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

How will your obituary read?

Have you ever wondered that? What will your obituary say about you? Will it say you were an encouragement to others? Will it say you touched many lives? Or will it just state the facts?
So yeah, I'm having a hard time with Damon's death. He was just so SO wonderful. He was an inspiration. I often wondered how it was that he was so nice. And the only answer is that he was walking so close with Christ. He was becoming like Him every day. And it showed. I want to be like that.
The other day, we went to a pizza place, and I sat there and thought, 'this must be a christian establishment'. I can't tell you why I thought that, because I can't put my finger on it. But, I want people to look at me and think, 'she must be a christian'
I have so far to go. I am trying to think positive thoughts these days. I'd like to eliminate the negative influences on my life. I'm stepping back from some message boards that aren't that uplifting. Not that they are bad, they just aren't uplifting. If that makes any sense.
Damon's influence continues in death. My mom said that church was packed yesterday, and that testimonies of him were cut off at 12:30. The funeral isn't till Tuesday. I can't begin to imagine how packed it will be then.
They donated organs, and were able to take stem cells, bone marrow, skin, eyes, almost everything. They said at least 50 people would be helped by him. How wonderful.
Another wonderful thing is that his grandma was able to buy him a plot right next to the very woman who introduced him to Jesus. Can you imagine that reunion when Jesus comes back? How very, very wonderful.
And so here is how his obituary reads. It speaks volumes to me.

Damon A. Huhtala, 28, a resident of Hayden; died April 18, 2007. He was born Oct. 17, 1978, at Roseville, Calif., to Diana Howe Jewell and Kerry Huhtala. Damon grew up in Sonora, Calif., where he graduated from high school.

Damon moved to Coeur d'Alene in 2000, where he attended North Idaho College Carpentry program. Later he helped construct the Hayden Lake Seventh-day Adventist Church, where he had recently become a member. He was presently employed by Edwards Construction Company. However, he had already laid plans to enroll at Weimar College, a Bible College in California to get a degree in theology and become a minister.

He loved fishing, boating, hiking, camping and all kinds of snow sports including: skiing, snowboarding and snowmobiling. He also loved children, but his favorite pastime was studying the Bible.

Damon's name means "loyal friend" and this describes him in the most accurate terms. Many people considered him their very best friend. He was a wonderful example, inspiration and encouragement to many others. His quiet, genuine and non-assuming ways were irresistible and made him the type of guy everyone wanted to be around. He will be deeply missed by all who knew him.

Friday, April 20, 2007

And I know it really doesn't matter

but Emily really isn't smiling yet.
She smiled that one time at Dillon, and once looking out the window at the sky.
Neither times were the type of smile where her whole face just lights up.
I looked and all the boys were smiling by now. She'll be 7 weeks old tomorrow.
When, oh when will I get those gorgeous heart melting smiles??

It only took two years

This last week, I joined a new homeschool group.
Yes, at the very end of the year. But that's ok.
These new neighbors are a little rough around the edges, and honestly, we don't really want our kids hanging out with them. Matthew is fine with this, they drive him crazy. But Dillon is just enamored by them. It scares me, because Dill is so impressionable, and I would much rather he be impressed my good kids than bad!
I went walking with a different neighbor last night and she said, 'you know, God either makes us a follower or a leader and there's nothing wrong with either one, we just have to help them to follow the right people" I think this is so true. I hear parents say, "well I've taught them right, they know what to do" I don't buy this for a second. I've taught Dillon well..and yet, in certain circumstances, he seems to forget what he's been taught!
Which led me to find a christian homeschool group. They also happen to be a military group. So, yesterday was park day. And we went. And it was great!
It was so nice to be around normal people! Normal by my standards anyway. People who enjoy having their kids around and aren't trying to get rid of them at every chance. People who also hated Texas when they first got here, but learned to like it while they're here. Just little things like that. I felt at home with them.
And the kids had a great time too. Of course it will take awhile to form real friendships. Dillon found someone he latched right onto. Matthew might take awhile longer. But it will happen. I hope.
Thankfully, they meet all summer long, so it really is of little consequence that I joined now.
I'm just so happy to finally be part of a group here. Finding homeschool groups was easier in Ohio and Idaho, which is funny, since San Antonio is much bigger than anywhere we were before!
Hooray for homeschool groups!!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Do your loved ones know that you love them?

My mom called me today, to tell me that one of our friends from Idaho had tragically died today.
He worked in the construction business. Today he was walking with a nail gun when he tripped on a cord. He fell down and the nail gun went off..shooting a nail through his head.
Such a horrible thing.
He was 28 years old.
And it made me think. Did Damon know how much he was loved? His life was certainly not easy. Not by a long shot. His dad and brother are in prison. I don't know anything about his mom. He had years of drug use behind him.
But he found Christ, and his life changed. He was a deacon in the church. He probably physically built more of the church in Idaho than anyone else. He was the type of person you could depend on. Over and over I heard what a hard worker he was. When Matt was in Korea, and we were moving..Damon was right there helping me. We had game nights at our house, and he was always there.
He was a quiet guy, but once you got to know him, he impacted your life.
I can't even tell you how much he will be missed.
And yet, I wonder, did he know? Did anyone actually take the time to tell him they loved him? Because we did. Anyone who knew him, must have. But with no family to tell him, did he ever hear it?
My stomach has been upset all night. You don't usually wake up and think you are going to trip and shoot a nail through your head. You don't wake up and think that when you go to class that day, you will be shot. You never know when your last day is.
Take the time to let your loved ones know you love them. Even if you think they know. And even if they aren't family, or the usual people you tell that you love. It could be your last chance.
Goodbye Damon. We loved you, and we will miss you so much. I only wish we had taken the time to tell you.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Ahh, the good (or not so good) ole days

So I'm washing lots of laundry, which I will take to the laundromat to dry later this afternoon.
Many years ago, before we had any children, Matt and I used to do our laundry at a laundromat. We had a great time.
There was an arcade next door, and we would set our clothes up to wash and go race each other on the car games. He always won, but it was still fun.
When the laundry was done, we would go across the parking lot to the movies and see a movie. Sometimes two.
I remember seeing the movie Nine Months then. And talking about when we would have a baby. We talked about having babies a lot back then. But we also talked about waiting until we could better afford it. Not that we wanted to. But we actually waited till we had been married two years before having Matthew. That was when we used to plan the baby!
It's funny, because I remember those times as good. But our marriage was also in a tremendous amount of turmoil then. I didn't think we'd actually make it. But somehow we did. It was at that time that we both got out tattoos, and there certainly was no church going to be had. Matt was working at Taco Bell, and I was going to cosmetology school. I have no idea how we survived. Times were not good, not at all.
Except for the weekly laundromat dates.
It's been 12 years since then. And we have come so far. Without the help of anymore laundromats!
Matt's now an audiologist, supporting us pretty comfortably. There isn't a doubt in my mind that our marriage will indeed make it. We've been through some terrible stuff and I figure there's not much else that could shake us. We have those babies we used to talk about all the time. More than I imagined? Nope, not yet! We are very, very involved in church, as a whole family unit. And I now wish there were no tattoos!
It's amazing to look back on those times. We were so, so young. God was hanging on to us when we were pulling away. He wasn't in our marriage at all, but He was going to try his best to be there.
Of course, I've made my trips to the laundromat since then. And it's always with fond memories of the early trips. I usually have someone to leave kids with, or someone to come with me. It will be totally different this go around. It'll be a whole new set of memories.
Maybe we'll even hit the movies afterwards.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

This is not good

My dryer has died.
Starting Sunday, it would only dry on high heat. And it was HOT HOT HOT. Earlier today, it was drying on high.
Now. Nothing.
It rotates around, but absolutely no heat.
This stinks.
I have too much laundry to worry about something like this! Matt is out of town till Saturday night. What will I do??
*sigh* I told him it would be good for me to go it alone for awhile. To get back to not fully relying on him. I just didn't expect to deal with this.
I had really hoped our washer and dryer would last long enough that we could save up and get those nice new ones. You know, the ones that hold like three loads. Oh my, that would be heaven. I guess it wasn't in the cards though.
I was trying hard to save a good chunk of money for when my in laws come to visit, but that chunk is shrinking by the day. We may just have to sit at home and twiddle our thumbs when they come!!
I would put up a clothesline, but that isn't allowed here in base housing. I guess I'll be making a trip to the laundromat tomorrow to dry the clothes in the washer and dryer right now.
Stupid dryer.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

I am so in love with this girl

I could stare at this little face forever. I feel like I have, actually, her face looks just like all of her brothers! These pics were taken last night, so you can see how much better it looks. I ate tomatoes last night, and nothing happened. One thing eliminated!
I think the top right pic is my favorite.
Put your cursor on the mosaic and click to start it. Then just roll your cursor over the pictures to see the big picture. If it stops, just refresh the page.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

General update

Emily is looking MUCH better. She is still really dry, but not red and inflamed. The other day, Chester came in to eat, I picked him up to put him out afterwards. The next time I held Em, she got really red. So for now, keeping Chester outside seems to really help. I'm afraid to add anything back to my diet though!! I don't know why, it's not like it kills her.
In fabulous news, Em saw the cardiologist yesterday and her heart is PERFECT! What a huge relief that was. I sat there fighting back tears as he did the echo.
I talked to him about some stuff that is going on with Zachy and he wants to see him and do a halter monitor on him ASAP. The problem is, he isn't Zachy's original dr. And that dr blew me off when I mentioned the issue. So I have to get a referral from the pediatrician and get Zachy in.
This morning, Bugaboo gave her first smile. And it wasn't even saved for me! Nope, it was given to Dillon. Oh Dill was THRILLED. It was so cute. She just stared at him forever smiling at him.
Last weekend was pathfinder camporee, and they got rained out. What a bummer. Matthew was having a blast. They came home a day early. They had a day and a half there though, so that was good. Matt said the speaker was really good, and unfortunately, he was probably someone that the kids needed to hear.
Everything else just goes on normally. Nothing major to report.
Matt leaves for Denver on Sunday for a week. I will miss him. We all will. It's rough to go from having him home all the time to being gone all the time! We will survive though!
Off to figure out dinner while bug sleeps.

Sunday, April 8, 2007

And by the way...

How much do you love this song?
It is one of my all time favorites.
How I wish I could save time in a bottle!!

Beside myself

I am feeling so incredibly overwhelmed right now.
I have eliminated chocolate, dairy, nuts, fish, eggs and now tomatoes from my diet. I had the last tomato on Thursday. Em's face is finally starting to clear.
But here's what I've noticed. Yesterday, we spend the whole day at church. The day before I had cleaned our room really well and shut the door, to keep out the animals. We have an air purifier going in there too.
On Friday, I also washed all her clothes in Dreft. I know, bad me, I hadn't been doing that before. But her body doesn't seem all that affected.
For weeks she has had a stuffy nose. We assumed it was a cold, but it hasn't gone away. And it drives her crazy. She also has a clogged tear duct and her eye is always goopy and icky.
Yesterday morning, for the first time, I didn't have to uncrust it to get it to open. Then we were at church, like I said. Throughout the day, I noticed the redness of her face going away too. And her neck was almost all flesh colored. Her nose wasn't stuffy at all, and I never once had to wipe her eye.
Within an hour of getting home, I was wiping goop out of her eye, and she was stuffy again.
Her face is sitll looking pretty good, not great, mind you, not great at all...but much better than the pictures.
Could she be allergic to the pets? Is that even possible at 5 weeks old? Younger considering when the stuffy nose and eye goop started. The eczema started about a week and a half ago. I wonder about the pets simply because I would think there would be dust mites and other allergens at a church that is all carpeted with cushioned pews.
And the bigger question is, how do we figure all this out? I certainly don't want to do allergy testing, and I'm not sure they would do it anyway.
Everything I read says that having animals in the house actually makes them have fewer allergies. But is that always the case? Allergies are inherited. My sister is allergic to cats, and I think my dad is too. Matt's family all suffer from allergies as well. I think most of them are seasonal allergies, but I'm totally not sure about his brother, who seems to be the worst of them. It seems entirely possible to me that that is what it could be. Even if she is young.
But is it the cat? Or the dog? Or the rodents or birds?? Or is it just something I was eating? But what about the eye?? Do you see how this is killing me? Around and around I go...and I haven't the foggiest idea how to get to the bottom of it.
Truth be told, I'm ready to banish all pets from the house, if it means my baby won't be miserable.
And speaking of allergies to's this for observant?? When we lived in Ohio, in an apartment, Dillon developed allergies for the first time. They were more severe than they have been anywhere else. And in the winter time no less. We coudlnt' figure out what in the world was blooming and making him allergic. Now it dawns on me that that is the same time we got the cat, who was strictly indoors at that point. Strangely (or not anymore) his allergies seem to always be worst in bad weather...hmmm like the times the cat stays in because it is too cold to go outside??!! How could we be so blind and not see that?
So it seems like a reasonable assumption that Dillon is allergic to cats. But what about Bugaboo? It seems awfully severe if that is what it is.
UGH..I just don't know. And I wish someone could just give me the answers and let me know what to do to fix this. Could you do that?? Pretty please??
These pictures were taken on Thursday. What you can't see is that in between any red area is totally rough skin. Also, what you can't see (obviously) is that it completely covered her neck, and spread down her back and chest, and now her arms. It's pretty bad. Today, her right ear is peeling from the dry skin coming off. I am lathering her in cetaphil constantly. My poor poor baby.

Friday, April 6, 2007

These kids are driving me UP THE WALL

Not mine, mind you..cause mine are perfect little angels. *snort*
They have decided to move some more families into our housing area, and there are quite a few kids. Since we have a community yard, so to speak, and we have the trampoline, imagine where they all migrate. The kids live down the street a ways, but they keep coming over here.
There is one family with 5 boys, and they are the problem. The three eldest I should say, since we haven't ever seen the younger two.
They ring the door bell over and over and over and over and over...and bang on the door till someone answers. I have told them repeatedly to stop ringing the door bell and pounding on the door. Not only is it annoying, but Emily has decided to be a fuss pot and not sleep, so I have about 10 minutes (ok that's an exageration) to get any work done while she sleeps. Every time they come to the door, we start the cycle over. I'm about to go tell their parents to have a talk with them, since they obviously have no intentions of listening to me.
And why do they do this? To say, "can I have a snack?" or "I ran through your sprinkler, can I have new pants and a towel?" or "Dillon isn't playing the cops game right, you need to come get him out of jail" When that was said, and I told the boy I wasn't going across the street because of their game, he informed me, with much attitude, that this was NOT a game. I told him that yes it was a game because he wasn't the real police. To which he got extremely huffy and stomped off.
My kids have all been outside playing and yet these neighbor kids continue to come to my house and tell me to send someone out to play with them. Sorry kids, I don't have any more to send out! I would ignore them, but as I said, they don't stop ringing and pounding till you answer.
UGH..I've so had it with them...and just think, they only moved in last week.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Where does the time go?

I've often wondered why it is that when you are pregnant, time drags. Then once the baby is here, time flies.
Little Emily is already a month old. I can't believe it. I keep telling Matt that the next time I look at her, she'll be 3. That's what happened with Zachy.
Things are going really well. The boys absolutely love her. Zachy still asks if we can call her Tarzan. He's so silly. Even though he asks that, he still says, "I love you, Emily" all the time.
Matthew and Dillon are huge helps to me. She settles right down on their chests. So sweet.
And yes, she needs settling. Zachary was the easiest baby in the history of babies. Not so with Emily. She isn't horribly fussy, but when she is awake, she definitely likes to be held. Which is fine by me. I just have to rush to get chores done when she is asleep. Which explains why I haven't been here much. Computer time has definitely gone by the wayside. Which is ok. It just means you have to wait longer in between updates.
Emily is currently covered in acne. Her face, ears, back, and chest are a solid mass of pimples. Took her to the doctor yesterday who said it was a classic allergic reaction. So right now I am taking dairy, nuts, fish, chocolate, and eggs out of my diet to see what could be causing it, because it is so bad. I'd try to take a picture, but she looks so red in all her pictures anyway, I'm not sure it'd show up. Maybe if I take it outside. We'll see.
She also goes to the cardiologist on the 10th. It is just an appointment to have her heart checked out to put my mind at ease. I've had a few freak out moments with her, and I just need to be absolutely sure her heart is ok.
Matt is still home. I don't know what he will do when he goes back to work! Shoot, I don't know what I'll do when he goes back. It's been really nice.
Tomorrow, he and Matthew leave for the weekend for Pathfinder camporee. They are both looking so forward to a weekend of camping. Course the weather is supposed to cool way down. I have to admit, I'm a little worried about dealing with the four younger ones at church on my own.
In our downtime, we are busy revving up for this year's VBS. It should be loads of fun, it is just loads of work for the directors. Hehe.
The boys have been busy doing their school. They are happy to only have 2 more months before having all summer off.
Laundry is calling, and Emily is sleeping, so I need to go get that done.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Beach days

When my mom was still here, we all went down to S. Padre Island to play at the beach.
It was a little tough because Emily was only a little over a week old, and at one point Zachy got sand in his eyes and just couldn't get over it, but we survived.
There were great big sand dunes that the boys jumped down. The water was chilly, but the boys didn't seem to mind! They all had a blast.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Isn't she cute??

Getting to know Emily

In the hospital

Emily's birth story

Finally, I've typed it out. It's long, be warned.
Also, be warned that her birth was far from "natural" which I know is a bit upsetting to some of you, but it worked for us. She's here, and that's all that matters.

The decision was made between the peri and OB to induce at 37 weeks.
I was scheduled for induction on March 1st…37 weeks and 2 days. On March 1st the hospital was totally full, probably the result of the full moon. No room for inductions. I was rescheduled for March 3rd. I was disappointed, but not too bad. After all, this bumped me back to 37 weeks and 4 days, closer to 38 weeks than before.
My friend and her daughter came over Friday night and spent the night with us. She would stay throughout the day and watch the kids for us. Matt and I got up bright and early Saturday, dressed, and said goodbye to the kids. I was my usual nervous, yet totally excited, self.
On our way to the hospital, the moon was still up. It was 6:30, starting to get light. The moon was huge, and full. It looked like we would drive right into it. I said that hopefully it was a sign of good things to come.
As soon as we got to labor and delivery, we were taken right to our room. A million questions were asked. I would have thought they would have had all these questions in my chart from the doctor. At any rate, after they were all answered, the dreaded IV placement started.
The IV was probably one of the worst parts of the day. It took several tries, and lots of digging around. Inevitably, I would jump while they were digging. The nurse then said, “you jump and it makes the vein blow” HOGWASH!! If it were good placement, there would be no digging. The third nurse was finally able to get it in. I was so glad to have that done and over with.
I was checked then, and told my cervix was shut, and about 50% effaced. What a bummer. I had always been dilated by this point in my pregnancies before.
At that point, they started monitoring me and baby. Her heartbeat was way down on the left side of my abdomen. All of a sudden, there was tons of movement, and her heartbeat was gone. It was found up on my right side, much higher up. The nurse called the doctor who ordered a sono, to make sure she hadn’t turned breech on us.
Thankfully, she hadn’t, but it was discovered then that she was posterior. Not wanting to relive the pain I had with Zachary, I started to consider having an epidural. I was nervous though, that it would make me too numb, and if she had a hard time coming out, I wouldn’t be able to push well.
The pitocin had been started probably around 8:00, and the contractions were coming. They were never very long, but slowly increased in intensity. The doctor then decided it was time to break my water. I told her she couldn’t, because I wasn’t dilated at all. She checked me and said I was 3-4 CM. She broke my water, and it was all nice and clear. However, Emily was still pretty high up, so the nurse told me I couldn’t sit up.
This scared me badly. I knew the pain would increase in my back, with her being posterior. I remembered wanting to be in any position but on my back with Zachary. I decided on the epidural.
At noon, the anesthesiologist came and gave me my epidural. It was a really good epidural. It took the edge off the contractions, but I was still able to wiggle my toes and lift my legs up. I knew I was in for a long haul, laying on my back, unable to move.
Around 3:00, I was still 3-4 CM, and things started to get scary. With every contraction, her heartbeat would drop down into the 60s and 70s. We could watch the mountain on the monitor go up with contractions, and watch her line go down right along with it. They started rolling me from side to side. Just about ever contraction would bring a change in position. The nurses would rush in and say, “quickly, roll over” This is easier said than done when you have an epidural! I was checked again, and still 3-4 CM. I got really scared. I knew they wouldn’t let this go on forever before I would need a C-section. Having a C-section is one of my biggest fears in life. But at the time, I was more concerned that they wouldn’t do one soon enough, and that we would lose her. My best friend, Michelle, called around that time and Matt told her I was really scared and what was going on. She tells me that phone call took place at 2 her time, so 4 our time.
I started to feel the contractions more. At first it was pressure. Then it was pain. And lots of pain in my back. I asked for more drugs. I was starting to lose it. The fear and pain was too much. I was crying with each contraction. Looking back, I should have known something was happening. I started crying when I hit transition with Zachary, and that’s what was happening now, I just had no idea. They told me I couldn’t have any more drugs because we needed to get the contractions to do something. The whole time the contractions were never longer than 40 seconds long, and 2 ½ minutes apart. I knew nothing had changed, but I asked them to check me. I needed to know if there was any change. I needed to feel like I was making progress so that I could gather myself together and get through the pain.
The nurse checked me and said I was an 8. The doctor came in and asked if I was a loose 8, and if I could just push through it. I was freaking out, thinking of pushing while I was only an 8. She checked me and said, “let’s just have this baby” I told her no way was I pushing. I knew it was going to hurt like the dickens, and I wasn’t ready for that. I had another contraction and remember the doctor telling me to get on top of the pain, and the next contraction we would start pushing.
After that contraction, Matt asked if he could video tape, and they said not the delivery, but afterwards he could. He went to the corner of the room where my bag was, to get the camera as the next contraction came. He was busy digging through the bag while I was contracting.
The pressure was incredible and I started telling the doctor, “she’s in my butt, she’s in my butt” I knew she was coming soon, and I kept thinking that if Matt didn’t turn around, he was going to miss it. The doctor lifted up the sheet and said, “ why yes she was, there’s her head”
Matt turned around and looked and said, “holy cow, there’s her head” This is actually my most vivid memory of the whole thing. I don’t think I will ever forget the look on Matt’s face or the sound of his voice.
I thought they meant she was crowning, or that they could just barely see her head, but no, it was all the way out. Another contraction came and she slid the rest of the way out. I never pushed once. There was never any time to take the bed apart or anything. She was just there. We joke that she just walked right out. I had no tearing at all. She was born at 4:40 PM. The actual delivery was the easiest by far.
Unfortunately, the anesthesiologist had returned and started giving me more drugs in my epidural, as she was coming out. Matt told her I didn’t need it, but she said I would need it for stitching that was done. But I never had any. I was so dead in my legs after that, that I couldn’t move them for hours. It was horrible. I wish she had never appeared.
The best part of the delivery, by far, was how pink she was, and that she came out screaming. The relief was huge.
Later on that night, the nurses came to give her a bath, and didn’t bring her back. When I asked what was going on, they told me she would have to go to the NICU because she was grunting with her breathing, and her sugars were really low.
I was completely devastated. She spent the night in the NICU, but was then able to come back to be with me the next evening. He sugars had gone up, and her grunting stopped. The next morning, her bilirubin was checked and it was found that she had jaundice, and needed to be under the bili lights. Thankfully, the lights were portable, and she was able to stay in my room, under the lights. It was so hard to see her lying there when all I wanted to do was hold her. She was under the lights for 2 days, and finally released from the hospital. She was six days old when she came home.
She is such a wonderful baby, and the perfect addition to our family. The boys are all so in love with her. Even Zachy does better than we ever suspected.
How blessed we are.

Thursday, March 8, 2007

The most beautiful girl in the world

Just a quick update to let you all know that miss Emily Jean is here. She was born March 3 at 4:40 pm. She weighed 8 lb 3 oz and was 18.5 in long. A little shorty.
We just got home today due to issues with jaundice. I'll write a real entry soon.
But for now, a picture. She is the most perfect little girl and she is a wonderful addition to our family. Everyone is head over heels in love with her.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Friday, March 2, 2007

Maybe it's all just a dream

It really doesn't seem real that I am sitting here 37.4 weeks pregnant. It doesn't seem real that we will have a baby in this house soon. I have all the proof..the huge belly, the jabs, all the baby just doesn't seem real.
I remember being this pg with Zachy and feeling SO done. I was trying everything to get labor started. This time, I've done nothing. Of course, when I contract, I do tend to think, 'ok, now just keep on contracting and we'll get a baby' but it's just a passing thought, because I know I won't keep contracting!
I don't know what the deal is. Maybe it is my way of protecting myself. Maybe I am more afraid of something bad happening then I am even aware of. Even though, when I really stop and think about it, I am terrified. I just tend to push those thoughts out of my head.
I do find myself becoming anti-social. I do this. I do it when I'm first pregnant, and towards the end. I don't really have any desire to socialize with anyone. I'll go to the store with my family, but dread the thought of going somewhere where I have to actually talk to someone other than my family. I don't know why I get like this, it just happens.
Matt's work had a quaint little shower for us on Tuesday, and let me tell you, it was very hard for me to go. I did not want to sit around with people I barely know and act social. But we went. And it was fine. It's just something I don't enjoy doing right now.
Wednesday night, we took the kids to the top of the Tower of the Americas. It is our version of the space needle. It was actually quite fun. We just walked around and around and looked at all the lights of the city. Very pretty. Probably not something we'll do again, but it was nice to do it and to be able to say we did it. Kind of our last big family outing as a family of 6.
Let's see, what else. The weather has been beautiful here, making me want lots of flowers. I haven't done anything about that though. Matt tells me it's still too early. What does he know, anyway?? The trees are starting to bloom, so that tells me it's not too early. Maybe my mom will plant me some flowers while she is here!
Speaking of her, they are coming in on the 5th. The boys are really excited. The problem will be that now Collin is going to be used to seeing her every few months, and that won't be happening again!
Have a great weekend. Maybe I'll wake up from this dream sometime and report I've never been pregnant after all! Or maybe I'll come and say it wasn't a dream and now we have a baby!

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Feeling desperate

This baby is no closer to having a name than she was 8 months ago.
At least by now, we had it narrowed down to two names with Zachy. Course we didn't use either of those names, but still!!
I'm feeling like we desperately need a name..soon. Will it just come to us when she is born? What if it doesn't? How can it be so hard to name our first daughter??

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

No baby yet

I was informed by my friend, Tommy, that I need to update to say whether or not I've had a baby. I figure you all will get REALLY tired of me saying, "no baby yet" But I'll humor him. No baby yet!
I don't have much else to write. I'm still sick. Zachy was up coughing last night, with a fever thrown in for good measure, but seems to be better today. Just coughy. Collin is currently being treated for an ear infection as well. And my dr was kind enough to perscribe some antibiotics, just in case this is bacterial.
I'm having a really hard time dealing with the fact that our last weeks together as a family of 6 is so filled with illness. Today, it was 82 degrees, and I so wanted to play outside with the boys, but my head is just full of so much pressure and I feel so crummy that I didn't do anything.
I keep reminding myself that I don't remember what we did in the last weeks before becoming a family of 6, so maybe it doesn't really matter. I don't know. I just know I want all this crud gone.
There's other stuff going on in the family, but I don't feel like writing about it. Just news we weren't expecting quite yet, and trying to process it all. So, if ya don't mind, keep us in your prayers. We'll get through it, we always do.
Anyway, that's about it, no baby and wanting to get well soon!

Saturday, February 17, 2007


Can you believe it? I know, I've been very bad.
We have all been sick. Coughing our lungs up and other fun stuff like that. Matthew got the worst of it, his was complete with an ear, eye, and throat infection. The dr claims it's all allergies, but I just don't think so. Matthew is getting better and he's the only one being treated with antibiotics.
I told Matt today that I must have a cervix of steel, because as hard as I've been coughing I would think this little one would just be coughed right out!
So yeah, it's been fun.
Meanwhile, we try to go on as if everything is normal. My sabbath school class appears to be growing, which is so great because it was just 2 kids. The problem is, I've felt too poorly to really embrace the new kids.
Last week, my great-aunt Jo died very suddenly and unexpectedly. I adored her, and am so very sad that she is gone. It isn't like I ever saw her very often, but just thinking about her family that she left behind kills me. She had 7 kids, and lots of grandkids, and I know they all adored her as much as me, more so, I'm sure.
At my 34 week ultra sound it was determined that little miss no name was 6 1/2 pounds. Just about what Collin was at that time. So, another big babe for me! WHEE!!
OK, this is so scattered, and Matt just told me it's dinner time. If I ever have something mroe exciting to write about, I will make the effort to do so.

Monday, February 5, 2007

Baby Shower

My baby shower was yesterday and it was so much fun.
I feel so blessed to have such a wonderful church family who loves us all so much.
I've been washing lots of blankets and onesies and towels and and looks like a giant pink monster threw up in my washing machine when I fill it up!!
I also got a bumbo chair (YAY!! the boys think this is especially cool, especially Collin, he just told me a bit ago that we can take her to the beach now and sit her in the bumbo hehe) and I got a monitor!! YAY ME!! And then just lots of clothes and little essential stuff.
A funny thing though...I got a doll, and some pink stuffed animals. They are all piled up on my dresser right now, and every time I pass by I have a fleeting thought of, "whose doll is that? we need to get it back to her" Then it occurs to me that it is OUR doll. It just sooo doesn't seem to belong in this house!! It's totally wierd.
Anyway, I Am sooo excited to have this baby. I swear, I can practically feel the velvety softness of her head cradled in my hand. *sigh* I can't wait....not much longer now.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Really enjoying this time

This pregnancy is in the home stretch.
Somehow, I managed to lose a couple months. I'm quite sure it was the holidays, but it was dragging, and now I can't believe how near the end is!
Being pregnant with a girl is definitely different than with a boy. I feel like she is really out there. Bending down is much more difficult than it was with the boys. I feel like they really nestled down inside me more.
Her movements are also totally different. I have always heard people talk about being able to feel a knee, or an arm, or any other body part. With the boys, I never felt that. I just felt general whollops. Little miss though, she's a different story. I can feel specific legs and arms and her little bottom. And it is so great! I love to watch my belly because she is always moving, and poking out in different areas.
Compared to when I was pg with Collin and Zachy, I am feeling great. I have some general aches and pains, but nothing nearly as terrible as what I went through with them.
My biggest complaint is complete and utter exhaustion. I have zero energy. I can't seem to get enough sleep, and I can't seem to get anything productive done. My house is falling apart, and it is killing me. And yet, I start to clean up, and I just can't. I am so tired. I don't remember feeling this exhausted with the others. Maybe I'm just old! I told Matt today, that at this rate, I just might opt for that epidural because I can't imagine having the energy to get through labor! I'm sure that adrenaline will kick in, but right now it just seems impossible to get through labor.
All in all though, this is a really enjoyable time for me. If only I could get some energy! Maybe I just need to eat a liver.

In other news, Matthew is doing much better. He had a follow up appt today with the pediatrician who said he was on the mend. Hooray!
All of the kids seem to be sick though. I can't tell if it is sick, or allergies. I am also totally stuffy. Matt was having major sinus pressure a few days ago, so who really knows what is going on.

On Sunday, my wonderful friends at church are throwing me a shower. I feel so loved. I have better friends here than I have had in a long time (and you know that doesn't include you Michelle!!). They have become my family here, and I am so grateful to them. Yeah, Theresa..I'm talkin about you!! I love ya!
OK, I'm off to bed, I'm so tired.
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