Monday, March 28, 2011

Thankful. #s 15-28

Today is the perfect day for me to list all that I am thankful for because today is a day where I could get bogged down in anxiety and craziness.  I am glad for an excuse to turn my eyes to all of the good in my life.

So here I go...

15.  John's sleeping all night
16.  Sleeping until 8 am in the morning (I have given up on waking up early.  It's not in the cards for this season of life).
17.  Memorized scripture--a miracle!!
18.  Laundry on schedule, still--another miracle!!
19.  child laughter while I clean the kitchen
20.  Rest time in the afternoon while John naps
21.  pediatric eye doctors and neurologists--very fixable problems
22.  the baby years and the children clinging to my leg years, I will blink...
23.  friends who carry my burdens
24.  twenty minute work out video that gets the job done
25.  my washing machine and dryer--imagine if I had to do all of this by hand?!!
26.  allergy medicine
27.  new bag for 3.99 on clearance.  Big enough to hold diapers, wipes, and everything else, but still passes for a purse

28.  nightly family prayer that has accidentally become routine

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with Thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God, and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."  Phillipians 4:6

Sunday, March 27, 2011

John Update

Note:  There are pictures in this post, but they are not showing up.  Scott is making me get off the computer now because it's bed time, so hopefully I will discover the problem tomorrow.

Note 2x: This is Scott. LB granted me access to her blog so I could add pictures for her.  I thought while I was here I could use this opportunity to shamelessly link to my blog because LB has way more readers than me. You should read my blog too because it is amazingly hilarious. Also, I am very humble. Click here, please. I am also polite.

Note 3x: I love John, too. (This is still Scott.)

I realized that John's twelve month well baby visit passed by, and I never blogged about it.  (Which I like to do for my own records).

At 13 months, John weighs 19 lbs 1 oz, putting him in the 9th percentile for weight.  And he is 28 1/4 inches tall, putting him in the 11th percentile for height.  But his head wins, being in the 21st percentile.  So, it's official, we have small children.  The thing is, to look at John, he doesn't seem small to me.  He's solid.  Ada has always been so lanky, so it made sense that she was only in the 1st percentile, but John is a chunk of a toddler.  We'll see how it all plays out.  Bless their hearts.  That's what they get with a 5 foot tall mother.

Other than his eye, John is a healthy boy.  His tear duct is still clogged, so we do have to go see the pediatric optometrist to get that taken care of.  I am hoping that procedure won't be a huge deal.  I joked with my mom that for my children to be healthy, we sure do have to go to a lot of specialists;)  But...we are headed to the eye doctor this week, and John's eye will soon be clear and not runny.  (Take note all you female babies out there who have been a bit turned off by John's goopy eye.  We are getting that cleared up.) 

(never mind the dirty clothes in the middle of the kitchen floor.  Despite the appearance of this picture, my laundry is still under control.  The pajamas on the kitchen floor are a result of a rush to get the kids dressed and out the door for church.  All dirty and clean laundry is now in its proper location).

Things to note about John at 13 months (closing in on 14 months).

--he is officially weaned.  He breastfed for the last time last Sunday when I got home from my weekend in Birmingham.  We are now officially done.  I can't believe it, and it continues to be bittersweet for me.
--he is finally sleeping all night.  He cried for 1.5 hours the night that I was in Birmingham, and nothing Scott did would console him.  The good news is, it broke his habit of waking up at night, and he now sleeps all night.  If he does wake up, he only cries for a few minutes and then puts himself back to sleep.  It only took 13 months.
--He is a very, very physical and strong baby.  I constantly feel like I am in a wrestling match with him--getting him bathed, getting his diaper changed, getting him dressed.  Physically, he wears me out. 
--He is very stubborn and continues to have a temper (and to breath hold, which ends in his passing out).  His anger comes out in various ways--a stiff body and arched back, so that I can't hold him, hitting something--anything--very hard, and sometimes throwing something down with a lot of force. 
--Part of his stubbornness is coming out in his eating habits.  We have a show down every meal.  The only things he really eats are yogurt and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.  I am trying to feed him whatever the family is eating, including all fruits and veggies, and it is a battle of the wills.  Usually I give in because I am so frustrated and ready for dinner to be over.  I am not entirely sure how to handle this.
--He drinks almond milk out of a sippy cup multiple times in the day.
--He has very happy and fun moments.  He LOVES Ada.  Loves her, and squeals and laughs with her all the time.  He is beginning to warm up to people other than the immediate family, which is good to see.  He still strongly prefers me over anyone else.
--He doesn't say many words at all but lots of syllables.  The one word that he says over and over is Ada, but he says it about everything.  He constantly points to things and says Ada, so I don't know if he associates the word with the person, or it's just what he says.  He never says mama. 
--He loves his blankie, and when he is tired he likes to suck on it.  (kind of gross I know)
--His world mostly consists of Scott, Ada, and me, but he does stay in the nursery at church, and we often go to story time at the library.  Of course, he goes wherever I go, so the grocery store and such.
--His favorite activity is to put one thing inside of another, and I often find random objects in laundry baskets or drawers. 
--He is such a cuddle bug.  He would be content to sit in my lap with his blanket all. day. long.  My precious boy.
I am so thankful for my John-John.  I have a feeling that we have many challenges ahead based on what we have seen of his temper so far, but my prayer is that I would recognize all of his good and strong qualities and focus on those rather than the bad.  There is so much good that can come from a strong will, and I pray that John would come to know the Lord at a young age, and that God would sanctify John and take that strong will and mold it according to God's purposes for His glory!!  I pray nightly that early on John would love the Lord with all of his heart, soul, and mind, that God would protect John from idols, and that John's chief goal in life would be to Glorify God in all that he does.  I also pray for his wife.  That God would be preparing a little girl to one day be a suitable helper for John. I pray that she would come to know the Lord at an early age, and that she would embrace her role as a woman--as the encourager, the helper.  I pray that she would be a strong woman, who also loves the Lord with all of her heart, soul, and mind, and that together they would desire to pass that love on to the next generation and the next and the next and so on.

What a huge responsibility and privilege it is to be a parent.  How desperate Scott and I are for God's wisdom and discernment and direction.  We are so thankful for God's promise that He will daily provide what we need to raise these children to know and love Him and His Word. 

Saturday, March 26, 2011


I am feeling like quite the slacker when it comes to blogging these days.  Our desk top basically no longer works, so my only chance to blog is at night when Scott is home with the lap top, and honestly, at the end of the day, I don't usually have the energy to write. 

I am so much more a morning person than night person.  At the end of the day, I just crash.

And I would blog all about our working in the yard today, but one, the rain quickly halted those plans, and, two, I have no pictures, so what fun is that? 

And my children were in crazy moods today, with John thinking it would be doable for me to just stand and hold him all day.  If I sat down to hold him, he would arch his back and throw a fit, and things were that much worse when I tried not holding him at all.  I finally put him in his bed, and Scott suggested I get out of the house before I go a bit crazy. 

Our Saturday was so promising, but the weather and moody kids (and parents!!) really sent things downhill quickly.  So, why am I blogging about this?  I am not sure other than I thought the blog was looking so lonely and neglected.  Maybe there will be more to share tomorrow.

Happy Saturday everyone, despite the gloomy weather.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Eager to Read

Lately, Ada has been asking me again and again to teach her how to read certain books.  I think in her head, she has to learn how to read each book separately, and she is trying her best to memorize the ones that we read over and over.  She also uses the pictures to make up her own stories. 

I finally told her that I would teach her to read, but that we would have to start at the very beginning, one letter sound at a time.  I checked out several books at the library, so that I could actually look at the books before buying one to use as Ada's reading curriculum.  I still have a couple that I need to pick up from the library, but I am loving Phonics Pathways so far.  It is very user friendly, and each lesson takes about ten minutes a day.  Plus there are several fun games to play to reinforce what we are learning.  Perfect for not-even-four year old Ada.  We are starting with the vowels. 

Ada knows the sounds of most consonants, and she often puts three consonants together and asks me what it spells, so I am glad we are starting with the vowels.  Plus, the vowels seem the trickiest for her because they have similar sounds.  We are tackling the hardest part first.  She is so cute when she says the sounds because she says the sound so hard, practically shouting it and concentrating so.  It's too cute.  She is doing great with A, I, and O, but she always makes the I sound for E.  We are working on that.  Tomorrow she will learn U.  I think we will probably camp out here for a week or two because the books says her reading the vowel sounds needs to be as automatic as saying her name. 

Again, it only takes about ten minutes a day, and we usually fit it in during John's morning nap, or we just get it done while he plays around us.

Today she learned I and reviewed A and E.  She practices writing them as well as reading them.

We spent the rest of John's nap time playing in the backyard and soaking up this beautiful Spring weather (with plenty of allergy medicine in my system)
The other "exciting" event of our day?  Ada received her first black eye from John.  I say first because I feel like it won't be the last.  I don't know, I didn't have brothers, though Ann and I did pull hair once or twice.  It was a complete accident, obviously, but John wacked Ada in the face with a weight, and I, randomly, caught it on camera.

They were being funny playing together, and I tried to get a picture of that.  Instead I got a picture of Ada right after John wacked her.

Look at John thinking, "what's the problem?" 
It was funny, though, because I was doing Thirty Day Shred, and John was trying his hardest to do it along with me.  Moving his pink weights to the music;)  Ada then wanted to be helpful and explain to John that he was doing the wrong thing, and that is when he "punched" her with the weight.  Sad for Ada, but funny too.

And one last thing to report, which won't make much sense to some of you.  But...

Ever since we moved into this house, there has been an empty lot next to us.  An overgrown, very ugly, empty lot.  When we first moved in, we assumed they would build there, and then, of course, the real estate market took a nose dive, as did our neighborhood, and we have been staring at a big pile of dirt and weeds and trash ever since.  Well...As of today, the lot is leveled!!!!!!  This is a huge praise!!!!  I am not sure what the plan is for the lot, but it looks so much better.  Still dirt, but nice, leveled, no trash, no weeds, dirt.

And last but not least, this weekend, Scott and I are going to buy the rest of the paint for downstairs.  I know paint colors for every room except for the half bath.  I am stumped.  Do I do a gray to blend with the hallway and living room.  Do I do light brown to go with the dining room, or do I do a completely different color to add some fun?  I thought about doing some kind of orangeish-red to match a lot of my pillows and vases in the living room.  I am stumped.  Feedback, please?

Monday, March 21, 2011

One Thousand Gifts

Do you know Ann Voskamp?  Surely you do, because it seems everyone does. 

I have been reading her blog for a while now (and finding myself in awe that she can wake up everyday and the words flow out of her the way that they do.), and I am encouraged by her intentional parenting and wifing and homemaking and educating and the list goes on and on.  She is all about finding the sacred in the everyday. 

Well, I recently ordered her book, One Thousand Gifts, and I have been encouraged to join her in looking for the good, the sacred, the gifts of God in the midst of the daily, and even in the midst of the suffering and the tragic.  Even there she thanks him. 

And so begins my list of 1000 (and beyond?)

1.  friends who know me well enough that even when it's been months, we start right where we left off
2.  the squeal of my children when I come in the door after a night away
3.  John's fat cheek up against mine
4.  A husband who encourages me to go, even when he has been very sick only days before
5.  In-laws who come to help out, giving me even greater peace of mind about being away
6.  A mom who can come in and figure out an organizational system that, shockingly, works.  (after praying that the Lord would help me get out from under the chaos)
7.  Health Insurance
8.  the smell of my new dryer sheets
9.  the sound of a neighbor's weed eater on this Spring evening and the smell of freshly cut grass
10.  Sonic diet coke for .99
11.  the library and the endless amount of books it supplies
12.  my Rainbow vacuum cleaner
13.  pajama pants and a t-shirt at the close of the day
14.  a full night's sleep on Saturday night
15.  the community I have found in this town I had never even heard of only a few years ago

The Lord is, indeed, good.  Always.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Long Overdue Girl's Weekend

This is me with my dear, dear friend Lindsay at my rehearsal dinner.

Lindsay was one of the first girls that I met in Auburn, shortly after we both pledged ADPi.  It wasn't until sophomore year, however, that I began to consider her one of my very best friends.  Lindsay played a huge role in my college experience, and she even got married only two weeks after me.  It was such a blessing to have her to call throughout that first year of marriage as I was realizing that maybe marriage isn't quite what I had always expected it to be. Ha:)  It always helped to hear that I wasn't the only one going through a bit of an adjustment period.

She was always super smart and super studious in school, and it has paid off as she is now a physical therapist.  Because we are now in different stages of life, we don't get to talk nearly as often as I would like to.  But we agree that when we do talk, it is as if no time has passed at all.  I have been meaning to go visit Lindsay in Birmingham since before John was born.  Now, it is over a year later, and I think the trip is actually going to happen. 

Just a few short days ago, I thought I was going to have to cancel yet again, due to this crazy virus that has attacked my home, but Scott assures me that he wants me to go and that he "will be fine."  So, as of this evening, I plan to head to Birmingham this weekend for some MUCH NEEDED girl time.  I am beside myself with excitement. 

As a mom, it is always bittersweet to be away from my children.  On the one hand, it is such refreshment.  On the other hand, any time spent away includes a bit of a homesick feeling in the pit of my stomach.  I can't help it.  These kiddos are a part of me.  I know they will be fine without me, though, and if they aren't, it's just one night.  Plus, I think Scott's parents are coming for the weekend to help out, so that will be a treat for Ada and John. 

Bring on the girl time.  I can't wait to talk and relax and eat a meal without being interrupted 500 times.  I am so excited.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Recovering, Take Two

Okay, this time I think, I think, that all family members are on the road to recovery. 

Scott actually sat at the dinner table with us tonight, though he only ate about a fourth of what he normally eats.  But we will take it!!!  And he is finally headed back to work tomorrow.

And Ada has had absolutely no trouble since we arrived home from the hospital.  Woo-hoo.

I am exhausted beyond belief, but that is okay, I can easily recover from a little exhaustion.

As for John, I think, I think, that he may be weaned.  (Again).  Never mind his midnight and 5 am feeding last night and this morning.  I am not counting those;)

And that is our family. 

Plus, thanks to my mother, my house is in order despite the chaos that surrounds us.  Normally, in a situation like this one, my house would resemble that of a hoarder's.  Instead, lots of wonderful systems for laundry and clutter are in place, and the house is practically running itself.  Thank you, thank you, thank you, mom!!!! 

Let me show you what all we did while Scott was sick in bed.

I wish there was some way to make you understand the state of the dining room when my mom arrived.  Basically it was serving as a dining room and play room.  The floor was covered in clutter; the table was covered in clutter; and there was no room to walk.  It was chaos.  Look at it now.  Some local friends saw it when it was so bad, so they will appreciate the difference.
This used to be the guest room.  It is now the play room and office. The beauty of this is that if toys are covering the floor, all I have to do is shut the door.  We moved Ada's twin bed into this room so that a guest could still sleep in here if needed.  (When Ann's family comes we really need two guest rooms, and they are our most frequent guests).

Next we have the new guest room, in process.  At this point in the visit I was working on organizing old clothes.  Deciding what to keep and what to give away.  The baby bed is Ann's, and we just inherited the rest of the furniture from Scott's parents.  Let me clarify that we spent time organizing my house, not decorating it in the exact way that would reflect my personal style;)  My pride is saying, don't judge my taste based on how my things are currently arranged.  We have a ways to go.  This "go round" I only spent money on organizational tools.  The decor will come later.

Clothes to be stored.

A small portion of things to be given away.  We made at least two trips to good will, and what you see above is the stuff I am taking to the consignment shop.

Ada's bed room with the bed that used to be in the room downstairs that is now the play room.  In my house some where I have a bedskirt for that bed.  I will post more pictures when the bed is more "put together."  This was the bed that was in my room growing up.

And the laundry project.  My mother's main goal was to come up with a workable system for my laundry, which usually just covers my hallway and master bedroom floor.  In other words, the current system wasn't working.  The new system involves four laundry baskets--mine, Scott's, Ada and John's shared, and sheets and towels. 

The baskets are just for clean clothes.

These hampers are for the dirty clothes--darks, whites, Ada/John, and towels/sheets

So far the system is working amazingly well.  It has transformed my life (you think I'm kidding, I'm not).  THANK YOU, MOM!!!!

And one last shot of the transformed dining room.  Which by the way, I actually plan to paint that table and chairs and the walls. 

My house project list is long, long.  But, it's now an organized house, and my stress level has dropped so very low compared to what it was before the transformation occurred.

Tips for painting furniture, anyone?

Monday, March 14, 2011

Not recovering yet

Okay, so we are having a slight repeat of last week, though it's Scott who is so sick this time around.

He has had Ada's stomach virus since Thursday, and he woke up this morning with chills and a fever above 100.  He went to urgent care where they said his oxygen levels were low and that he is on his way to being dehydrated.  They prescribed an antibiotic, which mom and I (she always walks me through situations like this) both agreed that an antibiotic would only hurt his stomach more!!  They told him if he wasn't better by tomorrow morning, he needed to go to the ER for an IV. 

Last Monday, I left the pediatrician where they told me that if Ada got worse I needed to take her to the ER at Children's.  It's all too familiar.

So...Scott is on his way to a primary care physician in hopes that we can get this thing taken care of.

In the mean time, Scott is missing his 5th day of work, and I am a week's behind in tutoring.  I have been on the phone with tutoring "clients" all morning trying to straighten all of that out and say, "I still can't go back to tutoring."  Plus I have been e-mailing back and forth with my "boss" trying to get him not to bill the clients for the missed sessions and even supply them with a "fill-in" until I know what is going to happen this week.  My little guy who is behind in reading can't get two weeks behind in tutoring. 

So, needless to say, things are a bit crazy.  And I feel my old familiar worry habit quickly rising to the surface.  However, God has been faithful in the big things.  I know, that I know, that I know, he can work out all of these nitty gritty details--missed work and tutoring and hospital and doctor bills and just a general messed up schedule.  It sends my mind into a "tizzy." 

And so I repeat to myself,

"Rejoice in the Lord always, again I will say rejoice.  Let your reasonableness be known to everyone.  The Lord is at hand.  Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God, and the peace of God which surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."  Philippians 4:4-7

I am praying (maybe I should say begging) that John and I stay well despite this virus's determination to take out the whole family.  And I am praying that I don't worry about little details that just don't matter in the grand scheme of things.  My daughter is well.  Scott will get well.  This is what is important.

And ultimately, Christ has conquered death, and that is the real reason I never have to worry.

Sunday, March 13, 2011


Well, we are still trying to come up for air around our house.  A week like that really knocks the breath out of you, right?

I can't believe that a week ago we were about to face that horrible Monday.  And here we are, and to look at Ada you wouldn't even know she had ever been sick.  It's so crazy.

And poor Scott.  On Thursday he woke up so very, very sick with the same virus (I guess--can you get it a week later?  It seems exactly the same as what Ada had).  He is still recovering, slowly but surely.  I am praying, praying that the virus stops with him.  He has spent the entire weekend just like this.
I felt like he was quarantined.  Like the door to our bedroom had a giant red x on it.  Ada and John were not allowed in there.  Only I went in to check on him and see if he needed anything.  And then last night, he felt up to moving to the couch, and mom and I moved in and attacked the room with lysol and general cleaning.

My mom has been here since Tuesday morning, and she left this morning.  Once we all got home from the hospital, my mom, who is queen of organization, whipped my house into shape.  Seriously, we have cleaned and organized from top to bottom.  I will tell you all about it, including pictures (I know you are fired up) tomorrow. 

The point of this post is just to say that little Ada (who is skinnier than ever after that whole ordeal) is absolutely normal, back to herself, bouncing off the walls, etc. etc.  My mom and I even joked that it's like the sickness rebooted her and she came back with twice as much energy as before.  And she hasn't had even a hint of a seizure since Tuesday afternoon.  So...I don't know.  I think it must be a febrile seizure situation (am I spelling febrile correctly?)  I am taking her to the pediatricain tomorrow just for a check up, per the hospital's discharge orders, and I need to schedule her follow up with the neurologist.  I am very thankful that we did not put her on medication, since there are no seizures.  Of course I will be a nervous wreck next time she is sick, but the last time that she was sick with a fever was last Easter, so it's not often that I will have to worry about it.  And, besides, next time I will know what is happening.  Perhaps that will make it less frightening?  I don't know.

I am just so very thankful to be on this side of things.

I'll leave you with a few photos of my little Ada.  I can't help but hug her a little more than usual these days!!

Okay, and John-John too

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Home SWEET Home

We are HOME.  Hallelujah and PRAISE THE LORD!!!

(Because this is such a long post, I bolded the paragraph that explains the latest news)

Yesterday was a LONG day, and I never guessed that we would be home this soon. 

Let me try to do a quick update (which I am never, ever quick).

Yesterday started well, with Ada waking on her own, smiling, with no seizure.  (The seizures only happen when she is waking, usually when something wakes her up before she is ready to wake on her own).  She was so cute, because the door to the hospital room was open, and she spotted her name written on the door, and a huge smile covered her face.  She looked at me and said, "mommy!!!  That's my name!!!"  (written in pink, to top it all off!!!)  However, they had to draw blood several times yesterday in order to check her glucose and potassium levels, so her happiness quickly wore off.  She was absolutely worn out and terrified and everything in between, which broke my heart, and I had to work really hard to keep it together for most of the day. 

By afternoon, her glucose and potassium levels were normal, but she had two more seizures, which, of course, proved that the dehydration was not the cause of the seizures (though I am not convinced that there is no relationship there--I don't think it's the cause, but maybe brought the problem to the surface?) 

Just when Ada had fallen asleep yesterday afternoon (after getting maybe 4 hours of sleep the night before), the girl came in to do her EEG.  So, I had to wake her, which resulted in a seizure.  When she "came to," she was so upset, and she continued to cry and cry as the girl (nurse?  Tech?  what is the title of someone who administers the EEG?) put the wires in her hair.  If you're not familiar with an EEG, it is not a painful process, but Ada was OVER IT and terrified of anyone that walked into her room.  The whole situation was a bit of a nightmare because I was trying to comfort Ada, which was not working, I got my mom in the room because Ada was asking for her, Scott came in with John because I hoped John might make her smile (John was visiting at that point), and I think the girl doing the EEG was a bit annoyed with us.  I didn't realize that I could hold Ada in my lap during the process.  Plus the overhead light was on, and I wasn't aware that I could turn it off.  And in the midst of this whole thing, Ada really, really needed to tee-tee, and the tech wanted her to go in her pull-up, but Ada is not used to a pull-up, and she wouldn't do it.  My mom, as frustrated as I was, went to find a nurse or someone who could help us, and I just started crying.  It was so bad;)  I was a bit of a nut case at that point.  But when the tech(?) saw how upset I was, she began to work with us.  She let me take Ada to the bathroom, which calmed Ada a lot, and that is when I found out that I could hold Ada during the EEG.  Once I held her, she fell asleep in my arms, and everything worked out.  We were SO GLAD when that was over!!!! 

Now, to balance out the above story, let me just say that we had a WONDERFUL nurse last night.  She was so great with Ada, and she even made Ada smile, which was a huge accomplishment.  Ada is still talking about that nurse.  Ada was able to go to bed at 9:00 (as were my mom and I--per Ada's request, Scott went home with John last night instead of my mom, which was the original plan), and the nurse honored our request to not check Ada's vitals throughout the night.  She did have to come in once or twice to check her IV, but she just used a little flashlight to do that.  My mom and I so wanted Ada to get a good night's sleep.  She was a miserably tired little girl.  She did not have any seizures during the night, though there were two different times that she began the crying that she does during the seizures, but she settled herself back to sleep before an actual seizure occurred.

Well, the nurse came in at 6 am to take Ada down to radiology for the MRI.  Again, Ada woke with no seizure, and smiled at the nurse when she saw her.  We were so thankful for that full night's sleep!!  (and again, for that nurse!!)  The prep for the MRI was a quick and fairly painless process, since they put Ada to sleep.  She cried a bit when we walked into the actual MRI room, but the sedation kicked in so quickly (which, as a parent, was very disturbing to watch.  One second she's crying, the next second she's out), that it really wasn't a big deal.  And she did great waking afterwards-- NO SEIZURE.  I was prepared for her to have one after such a strange sleep. 

The neurologist talked to us at that point, letting us know that the EEG and the MRI both looked normal, which is GREAT news.  It does mean the we don't know the cause of the seizures, but I think it's pretty common not to know the cause.  The main thing--It means that nothing really dangerous or scary is causing them.  The neurologist did suggest that we put Ada on medication, which would be a two year commitment, and the medication has some fairly strong side effects, which I don't want to deal with unless it's an absolute necessity.  We saw about 3 or 4 different doctors while at the hospital, and the general pediatrician, whom I LOVED, agreed with my decision to wait.  Now, I am a reasonable person, and if Ada continues to have seizures, I totally agree that we should put her on medication.  I just want to see if she continues to have the seizures when she is healthy and not on a sleep-inducing medication.  (This is total gut instinct on my part, since the doctors assure me that the seizure were not caused by the virus or the zofran).  We will have a follow up with the neurologist in a week, and we will see our general pediatrician in a day or two.  Also, they sent us home with an emergency medication to use in case Ada has cluster seizures (what she was having Monday night when we took her to the ER) or a seizure lasting longer than 3 minutes (hers last about 30 seconds).  The emergency meds should stop the seizure.  So, there is the quick update.  (by the way, Scott and I are more thankful than ever for insurance!!  The emergency meds which would have cost us about a thousand dollars total, only cost ten because of insurance.  Thank you, Lord!!!)

Now, just a few thoughts, and then I promise I will close this thing.  I can't help but "write this out" as it was my scariest motherhood moment to date.

Let me just say that God has been so good throughout this whole process.  I did freak out when Ada was having the cluster seizures, and we made the decision to head to the ER.  I was standing in my bedroom crying, looking around the room, and saying, "I don't know what to do."  But after I snapped out of it, I was able to think clearly and not panic (which is a huge deal for me.  I am a panicker!!)  Also, when we got to the ER and the nurse confirmed that Ada was, indeed, seizing, and we heard that they were going to do a CT scan to check for tumours and masses on Ada's brain, I was able to think, "God is good and big and He will give me grace for whatever we are about to face."  That is just God.  I couldn't think that on my own.  I was also able to take things a few minutes at a time.  At one point, after the doctor said the word tumour, Scott and I both had tears in our eyes, but I looked at him and reminded him that we didn't know anything and we could not worry about something that was not truth.  I am currently memorizing quite a bit of scripture, which is not something I am normally disciplined with, and on that night in the ER, it was a huge help to say those verses over and over in my mind when I was tempted to go crazy with worry.  DO NOT BE ANXIOUS ABOUT ANYTHING, Paul says in Philippians.  I normally assume the worst.  That is so, so, so my tendency.  But I found myself thinking in the unknown moments, you don't know that this is a tragic situation.  If it is a tragic situation, God will give you that grace then, but until then, don't go there.  Those thoughts are a huge praise for me.  (Edit:  Let me clarify.  For me, who tends to WORRY, these thoughts are a huge praise TO GOD)

And so many little things that I prayed for were answered.  My main prayer on the way to the ER?  That a nurse or doctor would witness the seizure.  I knew that if they saw it, they would much more know what we were dealing with than if I simply described it.  (For example, I thought the seizure was lasting 3 minutes, it was only 30 seconds--huge difference!!!)  Well, almost immediately the nurse saw the seizure.  Praise God for that!!  And, dehydrated Ada needed to tee-tee in a cup or they were going to have to do a catheter.  Scott, Ada, and I were in that hospital bathroom FOREVER, Ada crying, and Scott and I praying that she would use the bathroom (she wanted her potty seat that she has at home, but the hospital didn't have one).  We didn't think it was going to happen.  Truly, we were in that bathroom for so long, and then, SUCCESS.  When we heard that urine hit the water, Scott and I grabbed hands, and both of us had tears of joy in our eyes (I kid you not).  Now that's marriage, right?  Being equally excited about your child tee-teeing;)  Also, little John slept all night at Jessica's--miracle, right?  I prayed and prayed for that on the way to the ER too.  Jessica has a little baby (plus two other children), and I just hated the thought of her being up with baby Kate and John.  God answered that prayer.  And today, John stayed with Tutti while Scott joined us at the hospital, and again, he was great.  Tutti said he was so happy and cuddly the whole time.  Praise the Lord!!  (And thank you, Jessica and Tutti.  I appreciate both of you so much!!) God absolutely took care of us.  And what huge relief that nothing scary or serious is wrong with Ada.  Obviously God could have chosen to take us down a completely different path, and of course, He is sufficient no matter the situation, but I am overflowing with thanksgiving that this time, He is not taking us down a scary path.

Thanks, everyone, for prayers.  It was so encouraging to hear that you were praying for us.  And I apologize for my extreme wordiness.  It is a problem of mine;)

p.s. Children's Healthcare was great.  I was very relieved to be there and not somewhere else.  I was able to rest in the fact that Ada was being taken care of and was in good, very capable hands. (the HORRIBLE eeg being the one exception).  Our night nurse--Jennifer, and the general pediatrician--Dr. Keeling, I think--were WONDERFUL.  I was so comforted whenever either one of them walked in the room.  (Everyone else was great as well, but those two stood out to me). 

And now, I am off to sleep in my own bed.  Woo-hoo.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Things Took a Strange Turn

I am blogging from Children's Healthcare of Atlanta at Scottish Rite.   Yesterday I facebooked that I thought Ada was out of the woods, but I was wrong.  Yesterday, during a zofran-induced nap, Ada woke up with a strange, high-pitched cry, and no matter what I did I couldn't get her to recognize me or respond to me.  Finally, after about 30 seconds (while I scrambled around trying to figure out who to call, what to do), she snapped out of it, and I called the doctor.  He suspected that it was a nightmare caused by the zofran, so we went on with our day.  To make a long story short, Ada ended up having another one of the "episodes" yesterday afternoon, and then after going to sleep last night, she began to have multiple "episodes," which I began to suspect were seizures.  Scott and I agreed that we needed to head to the emergency room.

We quickly grabbed a few items, called my friend Jessica, and got Ada and John in the car.  All the while I was second guessing myself, thinking maybe she was just having night terrors caused by the zofran.  We pressed on, however, and left John with Jessica, and headed to the emergency room.  Ada was sound asleep in the car, and she had several episodes on the way to the hospital.

Again, a long story short, a nurse saw Ada have an "episode," (which I prayed that a nurse or doctor would witness it, by the way), and she confirmed that it was, indeed, a seizure.  Last night Ada had a cat scan, which came back normal (Praise the Lord), so now we are just trying to figure out what is causing the seizures (which Ada continued to have throughout the night).  Best case scenario is that Ada's low glucose and potassium levels are the cause (a result of the stomach virus), and the doctors and nurses suspect that Ada has rotavirus, so the yuckiness continues.  However, we are still praying that the low levels are the cause because once she is well and hydrated, the seizures should stop.  Of course, they have to rule out other causes, so...

we spent last night at the hospital, Ada is scheduled for an EEG today and possibly (hopefully not) an MRI.  Ada is still not drinking or eating much at all, but she is getting that wonderful IV.  My mom is here, and Scott just left to relieve poor Jessica who has our John.  Plus I am DYING to see John, so Scott is going to bring him here.  Later, mom will return to my house with John, as Scott and I wait to see what direction the doctors go next.

Ada has been a trooper as she endured much last night, but she is weary and asking to go home.  She also wants that IV OUT!!  I guess the main reason I even blog this is to ask that you join us in prayer.  We are praying for answers, hopefully easily solvable answers.  We are praying for strength and courage for Ada, and the same for us as we face the unknown (though I am really very, very hopeful that this will all be solved by some hydration).  Also pray that John will be a trooper as well.  (Praise the Lord, he slept well at Jessica's last night, and Jessica said that he has been playing happily today).

Anyway...I will keep everyone posted, and I will leave with a few pictures of the patient.

Ada last night, not happy about the situation AT ALL.  But a champ through it all, really!!!
Ada today, much more energetic and more herself.  I was relieved to see that after our scary night last night.
our goal for the day...really our goal is to figure out the why behind the seizures.
And just for fun because he's my stinker (thanks again, Jessica!!)

And that is what is going on with us.  Again, we really don't feel worried, just anxious to get to the bottom of it, but really, it all seems connected to the virus, and I think it will get cleared up!!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Sick, Sick, Sick

Sickness has moved into our house, and it seems determined to stay.  (which is apparently true for a lot of people these days.)

John had a fever last weekend, and we stayed home from church last Sunday because we were all feeling fairly crummy.  Well, I waited out his cold all week, but his eye got runnier and runnier (he still has a clogged tear duct), and I began to suspect both pink eye and an ear infection.  Finally after a few rough nights in a row, I took him to the doctor on Friday morning.  Sure enough, pink eye and a double ear infection. 

Well, after the appointment and then getting the prescription filled, Ada began to act a little strange, refusing to eat her lunch and then refusing to eat her dinner.  Strangest of all?  She asked if she could go to bed last night.  Asked!!  So obviously I wasn't surprised when she woke up at 10 last night with a stomach virus.  After stripping her bed and giving her a quick bath, she fell asleep in our bed, until we had to repeat the entire process a couple of hours later.  Finally, at midnight, she and I both ended up in her twin bed (with fresh sheets), where she insisted on lying right beside me.  We were taking up about 1/4 of the bed.  And we slept on and off through the night, waking up periodically for her to get sick.  It was a doozy of a night.

Then today, John has been so very fussy, I am sure from the ear infection, and I was trying not to nurse him.  Well, he decided to absolutely throw a fit.  It was really funny to watch.  Scott tried to pick him up to comfort him, but he was flailing about so much, that Scott had to put him on the ground to keep from dropping him.  At one point during the fit, John spotted the boppy.  It was hilarious because he immediately walked himself over there and tried to pick up the boppy.  Obviously it was too big and heavy for him to carry, so he just put his hand on it, looked at me, and pushed it towards me.  I was getting the message loud and clear:)  He wouldn't let it go either.  He was determined that I was going to pick up that boppy and nurse him.  Finally, he won.  I told myself that he is still feeling bad, and we will get back to weaning in a couple of days.  I am a bit frustrated because he was DONE, and then he got sick, and we are back to square one.

The good news?  My sick children are both in bed before 6:30, and Scott has gone to pick up a movie for us to watch.  So, though it's been a stressful day, I think, I think, we are looking at a relaxing night.  And Ada hasn't been sick in a few hours, so hopefully we are past the worst of it.  She is counting on attending a birthday party tomorrow, but we'll see if that actually happens.  She keeps insisting that she's "all better," so that she can go. 

And, by the way, I think the fact that John is old enough to process the fact that the boppy equals nursing means he is old enough to stop nursing.  Do you agree?

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Rambling, as usual

I said that I wasn't blogging as much, and here I am, back again.

First, my pride feels the need to say that I didn't intend for yesterday's post to be about how busy I am or how hard I am working as a mom.  I was afraid that it came across a little, what's the word?, "showy?"  Anyway...I should probably just leave it alone, but it's been on my mind (and, again, it's probably just pride on my part).  I really have just started recording my days for posterity's sake.  Because it's fun to see at the end of the day what all the minutes and hours added up to.

Moving on.

My children's sleep habits are driving me NUTS.

I really, really, really, really want to get up before my family to exercise and read my bible.  I wholeheartedly believe that it would get my day going in a positive, happy, peaceful direction rather than jumping in at 7 am when little Ada yells, "let's go downstairs, mama!!!!  It's light outside!!!!"  I even have a friend texting me everyday for accountability to see if I woke up.  Monday, I had success.

Tuesday, as you know, started out successfully, but then both children woke up, and to insure that Ada didn't start her day at 5, I lay down with her.  It seemed the wisest decision at that point.

And last night was disaster from start to finish.

I got in bed early-ish.  11, maybe?  And I fell asleep fairly quickly.  Then John woke up, loudly, at midnight.  I was very frustrated.  (Want to see me at my absolute worst?  Wake me up in the middle of the night.  Hence the throwing pillows at Scott during our first year of marriage.)  Scott suggested that I go downstairs and sleep on the couch where I couldn't hear John.  Turns out I could hear John from the living room couch.  But he calmed down, and I went back to the bed and fell asleep.  John woke up again about an hour later, and I was even more frustrated.  Plus, Scott was sleeping right through the whole thing, and being totally honest, I took a lot of my frustration out on Scott.  (I was totally in the wrong).  Scott, probably for his own sake, suggested that I nurse John "just this once," so I agreed and that took care of that.  And next thing I know, I am waking up at 7 am in Ada's bed.  Well, that's a new one.  Many, many mornings I wake up to find Ada in between Scott and me, and I can never remember how she got there, but this is certainly the first time that I have woken up in her bed with no clue how I got there.  I still don't know.  But all of this night time chaos is preventing my early morning time, and I am very frustrated.  It's one of those times that I want to say to God, "isn't it a good thing for me to wake up and spend time with you?  Can't you help me out with this?"  Which I know isn't biblical, but it is how I feel.  And I am clueless as how to solve the situation.  If I let John cry-it-out, Ada wakes up.  And everyone tells me that she will get used to it, but gut instinct tells me that she won't.  And then we all end up awake at 1 am or 5 am or whatever.  And John is supposed to be weaned, but I don't know how to get him back to sleep in the middle of the night without nursing him.  It's becoming an all-night party around here, which is the exact opposite of what I am trying to accomplish.

I am going for early to bed, early to know?

Anyway, thanks for letting me vent.  I still don't know what to do about the situation, other than the obvious--pray about it, and trust that if it really is best for me to wake up early, God will work out the details (like letting my children not wake up at 5 am just because I wake up at 5 am).

I am at a place, right now, where so many situations in my life (and not even major ones; mainly normal, daily stuff like my children's sleep habits) feel very out of my control, and, again, just being honest with you, I am not handling it very well.  Control continues to be an idol of mine, and I am sensing that God is taking away a lot of control in my life so that I will rest in Him instead of my idol.  Lately, I have two options, rest in God and the fact that he is working out the details of my life, or live in a state of constant anxiety.  I am in a bit of a lonely place, feeling distant from my family because I am not able to visit them the way I used to be able to--it's just not a possibility with my current tutoring schedule and such.  I am missing quality girl time because motherhood just doesn't allow that--I mean time with women apart from my children.  I am wishing for more time alone with Scott (thank you, Lord, and friends, for a date this past weekend!!!  I shouldn't complain).  And there are other things that I could list--things I don't feel the freedom to go into in such a public place.  Reality, though, is that I have been given so, so much, and I can't believe that I am even finding one thing to complain about.  I mean, really.  I wish I could grasp that and see the good, only the good.  There is so much good.  It is overflowing.

Okay, look at me, rambling on and on as usual.  Bottom line, I am hoping my children will start sleeping better;)

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Listing My Days

Lately (or always) I often get overwhelmed at the end of the day when the house is a mess, and I am trying to remember what I did that day.  How did we fill the hours?  A little lie that plays in my head says that I didn't do anything that matters.  I tell myself (and Scott, bless his heart, I talk his ears off all the time) that I don't think we just wasted the day away, but what did we do, I wonder? 

Combine that with the fact that I would love to go back and read a record of my mom's or my grandmother's or my great grandmother's days as stay-at-home moms.  I adore Elisabeth Elliot's book, The Shaping of a Christian Family as it is basically a journal of what her mother's life looked like when she was a mom.  I learn so much from reading a record of her days.  I always imagine that one day Ada will come to me with questions when she is also in the motherhood trenches (if the Lord decides to make her a mom).  So, I have started jotting down my days.  Just a list, nothing formal, but a way for me to look back over my days and reflect.  I have only been doing this for two days, but I am loving that it forces me to reflect and see that I am doing something

So, just for fun...our day today.

Woke up at 5 am, excited to work out and do my bible study.  John woke up with a vengeance at 5:10 am, waking Ada up with him.  I nursed John (who is supposedly weaned) and then lay down with Ada until 7 am.  I don't think she ever went back to sleep.

At 7 am, got up, made bed, "switched laundry," unloaded dishwasher, swept kitchen floor

John woke up

quick "wipe down" of guest bathroom

John had a "spell," he is worn out from it, I put him back to bed at 8:00

8:30 got in the shower, while in the shower, Ada comes in the bathroom and tells me that she went into John's room but assures me, "he didn't see me." 

Get out of shower, and sure enough, John is awake.

9 am, Jessica gets here to watch my kids while I run an errand for Church

return at 10:30 am

Go upstairs and notice water on the floor of John's room.  I ask Ada if she was playing with water upstairs, and she says, "that's tee-tee."  I never get a clear answer on how tee-tee got on John's floor other than "it dripped."

Realize that I need to clean out our vacuum before I can clean up the tee-tee (we have a Rainbow, which sucks wet spills right off the carpet.  If you are wondering how we ended up with a Rainbow, that's another post for another day)

I push John's high chair outside, put vanilla wafers on the tray, and put John in the high chair.  Ada joins us outside.

I realize the water hose is broken when I soak my jeans, but I manage to clean out the Rainbow container.

I roll John back inside, and I get Ada inside.

I take John and the vacuum upstairs.  Put John in bed, and finally get the tee-tee cleaned up.

Get John down for a nap, fix lunch for Ada and me, eat, and crash on the couch while Ada watches two cartoons.

John wakes up.

Ada, John, and I play with the letters blocks.  I try to teach Ada how to "blend" letters.  John some how hurts himself and has another "spell"

He is worn out again from the breath holding, and I put him back to bed.

While upstairs, I fold clothes on my bed and try to ignore the clothes covering my floor so that I don't become overwhelmed.

Match pile of socks on the floor.

comes downstairs--it's 2:30

I sit down to attempt my bible study that didn't get done this AM, and Ada writes her letters and we review vowels, which she calls "balance" (A "balance" is A).  I try to correct her, but she never hears the word correctly.

And I stopped recording there.  Lots more hours have passed, and now Scott is at Bible Study, the kids are in bed, and I am watching The Biggest Loser.   And, yes, my house is a mess.  A mess.  The kitchen is clean, though.  That's something.

This is my day-to-day.