Friday, December 31, 2010

Our 2010

January's highlight was our son turning 1 year old. What a fun party we had with good friends.

February, soccer season for our daughter began. We were disappointed with this year's team, as they only played four games. (Our daughter decided to run track this Spring instead.)

March, we got a little garden planted. It turned out better than expected, as I was VERY pregnant, and manual "dirt work" was becoming difficult.

April, we had a visit from my sweet mother-in-law. What a godly example she is. I hope that someday I will be as good a mother-in-law to my children's spouses.

May, our daughter took the AP U.S History exam, and passed it! Congrats to my sweet, SMART girl. (This May, she's got four other exams to take: AP Art History, Spanish, English, and World History.)

June had two big milestones. My Honey retired from the Army after nearly 21 years of service. 4 days later, our littlest baby was born. What a sweet little guy he is! Now he's six months old, sitting up on his own, and nearly crawling! They grow up too fast.

July held both my Honey's and my birthdays. (Let's not go there, as I stopped officially having birthdays in the late 1990s. LOL)

August, my Honey and I celebrated our 18th wedding anniversary. What a wonderful adventure it's been! I wouldn't trade it for anything. My Honey's parents were also able to make a road trip to see our newest son, who turned 2 months old during their visit.

September, Honey was back in school, full-time. Going back has taken some adjustment, but he's maintained a 3.8 grade point average. I am so proud of him!

October, our daughter ran a personal record in her cross country team. 5K's in 24 minutes, 1 second.

November, our daughter turned 17. Ack, is she that old? (Am I that old??)

December, our littlest one celebrated his first Christmas. And now 2010 goes into the history books. But I will hold its memories for many years to come.

Happy New Year, everyone! I hope you all have many blessings, fun times with friends and families, and experience the Lord in a real and mighty way.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

My Run Today

I started out with a goal to run .70 miles. There is a small lake near my house that has a .70 mile paved path around its perimeter, and I wanted to run around it once without stopping.

Guess what? I ran it twice! That's 1.4 miles, which is much farther ahead of my goal to run 1 mile on January 20.

My muscles might be REALLY sore tomorrow, but today my spirits are flying high!

(Reminder to self: bring a water bottle next time...)

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas 2010!

Here are some pics from my 23-month-old son's 2nd Christmas, my 6-month-old son's 1st Christmas, and my daughter's 18th Christmas:

He loves anything Elmo, and these slippers were a big hit!

This is an awful picture of me, but oh well...

My mother-in-law made a BEAUTIFUL lap quilt for my Honey.

She also made a GORGEOUS quilt for my daughter.

These puppy slippers were a gag gift for my daughter. She kept asking for a new cell phone for Christmas. (She didn't know that we had already gotten one for her.) I kept complaining about how expensive a new cell phone would be for her. She kept asking, though. Finally I said, "If I go out and get you a new cell phone now, you won't be surprised for your gift!" She replied, "I'd rather be NOT surprised with a gift I want, than be surprised with a tacky pair of bunny slippers." My Honey suggested we go buy her a pair of slippers, and hide the new cell phone inside them." She WAS surprised...And go figure, the slippers are a hit, too!

He is fascinated by this toy. It sticks with a suction cup, and it plays classical music when it spins.

Two presents to open, and Mommy's new TV in the background! (The TV was a gift from my sisters and parents.)

He's not impressed by the decorations, LOL.

Playing in the new tent we bought for their "big" present.

What a surprise, we got a White Christmas tonight!

Merry Christmas, Everyone! Please take time to remember why we celebrate today--the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, who came to our earth as a baby. He experienced humanity so that He could say, "Yes, my child, I know what you're going through." He died a cruel death and resurrected so that we could be reconciled to God the Father and live with Him forever someday.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas Lights, and I'm Very Out of Shape!

Each year we go to visit some well-known homes in our town that go all out with Christmas decorations. Our 23-month old was really excited to see the lights this year. His only expression was "Wow!" each time we saw them. (The 6-month old pretty much slept through it.)

There is one house in our town that is "famous" for its extragavant light display. The homeowner starts setting out his lights in August! He has a donation box in his driveway, and he gives all the proceeds to the Make A Wish Foundation. His lights are set to music, and you can tune in to a special radio station to hear it. Each year the light display gets bigger, and now he has spread his light display into his neighbors' yards!

Here is a picture of what it looks like as you approach his house:

Here is a video, with the music playing on our radio, as we drove by.


On an unrelated note, I tried to go running last night. I knew I wouldn't be able to run a whole mile, but I did better than I thought I would.  There are a few hills in our neighborhood, too. Still, I'm super flabby. Granted, I haven't run since 2005, and that was on a treadmill. Running on pavement is a whole other scenario, but I'm proud to say my muscles are not as sore today as I thought they'd be. I gotta keep going, though. My goal is to run 5K by April 10.

Why April 10? That's the 100th day of the new year. I figure I'd set a 100-day goal.  By January 20, I want to run one mile on pavement without stopping. By February 19, I need to run 2 miles. 3 miles by March 31. 5K on April 10. I am putting this down in writing, so I am committed to do it! Wish me luck! (I'll try to keep you posted on my progress.)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Kidney Saga Continues...

My littlest one has had a swollen left kidney since before he was born. It showed up on several prenatal ultrasounds, and my obstetrician advised us to get it checked after he was born.

When he was three weeks old, he had an ultrasound which showed it was still swollen. So we got a referral to a pediatric urologist, even though the nearest one is 100 miles from where we live.

When the baby was six weeks old, we made the road trip to the urologist and had another ultrasound. The kidney was still swollen, and he suggested three reasons why it might be so:

1. The ureter (tube that goes from the kidney to the bladder) is too long, so it's kinked and not allowing urine to flow out of the kidney. In most cases, the baby "grows into" the ureter, so it straightens out over time and the kidney heals.

2. There is a structural defect in the kidney where it meets the ureter, which will have to be surgically corrected.

3. There is a structural defect where the ureter meets the bladder, so it is allowing urine to reflux back up into the kidney. That also will need to be surgically corrected.

At that visit, the urologist advised us to wait until our son was six months old to see if he grew into his ureter and the problem resolved itself. Since the kidney was still working, we had time to take a wait-and-see approach. When he turned six months old, we needed to go to the Children's Hospital (115 miles away) to have another ultrasound and nuclear medicine study done.

We went to Children's Hospital yesterday. I was so proud of my little guy! He has had the ultrasounds done before, so that was no problem. But the renal scan was a long, involved test that involved pushing IV fluids through him, inserting a Foley catheter, then a radioactive MAG-3 solution through the IV that travels to his kidneys. He had to be restrained in a papoose on a table for 1 hour while the camera studied how the MAG-3 "lit up" his kidneys, ureters, and bladder. The poor little guy looked downright miserable! But he was so good about it. He did get sleepy, and as usual, fought it and screamed himself to sleep, but that is an everyday occurence, LOL. After the MAG-3 did its thing, the nuclear medicine technician pushed Lasix, a diuretic, through the IV to make him pee out the MAG-3 and study the bladder.

I watched the computer screen while all this going on. His left kidney is about 50% bigger than his right, which is scary for me to think about. Also, the MAG-3 just stayed in the kidney, it didn't drain out. Another scary thought for me. The ultrasound showed that he has what's called a "duplex" kidney, which means that the kidney is pretty much sliced in two, with a thin membrane holding it together. (That's how it was explained to me by the ultrasound technician, although the Internet shows a lot of different information.)

We go back to the pediatric urologist on January 3 to have the results analyzed and figure a plan for what to do about it. I'm already impatient about waiting that long! We could have seen a different urologist earlier, but I was so impressed with the doctor my son saw, I'd like to see him again. He'd most likely be the one to do any surgery anyway, so we'll just wait until we can get to see him.

Please pray for wisdom about what to do. (And pray for this Mommy not to go crazy with worry before we see the urologist in January.)

Here's the little guy after he got his IV started. He NEVER took a pacifier until this moment. The nurse put some Sweet-Ease sugar water on the nipple, and he would not give it up after that! (Well, until the sweetness wore off, then he just spit it out and wanted nothing to do with it anymore.)

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Misc Photos

6 months old already?? Where has the time gone?
(No, we don't spike his hair. It grows out of his head like that! He's already had two haircuts to keep it manageable.)

Fun in the fall leaves. My Honey shook the tree to make the leaves fall down like confetti. Lots of fun!

17 years old already?? Where did the time go?
She invited about 20 friends to join her for a dinner party at a local Mexican restaurant. The waiters put a sombrero on her head, sang Happy Birthday to her in Spanish and English, and dolloped some whipped cream on her nose. It was a great night!