Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A White Christmas - YES!!!

For as long as I can remember I've wanted a white Christmas. I've lived in the same town here in Washington all my life and I don't ever remember snow on Christmas. Snow before yes, snow after, yes, but never actually on Christmas. This year in the week and half leading up to Christmas we were blessed with over a foot of snow; almost unheard of here in this area of Washington. I know that a lot of people hate the snow and the inconveniences and even dangers that it causes. To me however, the snow is magical. I love the way it covers everything in its pure white blanket, making everything beautiful no matter how ugly it was to begin with. This was Drew's first real snow. We had a couple inches last year, but Drew was too little and way to sick to really experience it. What a difference a year can make!

Santa Tony and his elf Drew

Me and my little Drew-bear

Ooooooh it's COLD!

First taste of snow, I think I prefer my Cheerios

Tony & cousin Meshayla taking a break from their snowball fight

Break is over!

I can do it myself...

Ahhhhhh! Get it off!


I hope you all did have a merry Christmas; and heartfelt wishes to all of you for a very happy New Year!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

rashes and fevers and appendix's oh my!

So Tony finally had his appendix removed on Friday. We stayed at Children's Hospital in Seattle overnight. I'd thought with all the hospitalizations we've had in the past year with Drew that I'd stayed pretty much everywhere in the hospital but this one was new. We spent the night in one of the "new" observation rooms. The accommodations were not so good. Its probably best I don't go into it. I will just say that its a good thing it was just one night. The staff was great though. We left on Saturday afternoon, the car ride was not so fun for Tony but at least the weather held. I was happy to get home to my littlest monster but upon arrival I noticed the littlest monster didn't seem to be feeling quite his monstery self. I took his temp and he was running a low-grade fever 100.7 soooooo, two sick kids. Arrrggghhh. Then.... Sunday morning Tony wakes up with a very interesting looking rash. In the perfect shape of where they taped him off for his surgery is a bright red bumpy horrible looking rash. Super itchy according to Tony. It seems his skin had a bad reaction to the soap or whatever they used to clean the surgery site. So add benedryl to the pain meds. Poor kid. 4 days later and its just now starting to get better. Drew stopped running a fever Monday, and then Tuesday night HE gets a rash. Much different from his big bro's . I don't know if it itches him since he can't tell me. It looks exactly the same as the rash he got the week after his immunizations, pink and blotchy. It seems better today. But now my dear husband seems to be coming down with a rather nasty cold. Sheesh. When will it end?

Sunday, December 7, 2008

One Step at a Time

Has it really been weeks since I posted here? Shame on me. In my defense things have been a bit nutty here. ok, ok, they are always nutty. I should say nuttier than usual. Here is some of what has been going on these past few weeks.

1. Gobble, Gobble, Gobble

Ahhh, the blessings of a mixed family. We had 3, yes 3 Thanksgiving dinners. Tony had 4! Its a darn good thing we all like turkey! I must admit it's a bit of a mixed blessing. It was just a little exhausting. But really, I feel so fortunate to have so many people who love us and want us around to celebrate with them. We have so much to be thankful for.

Drew and his Grandma Bacon

2. Hot Water for Christmas..

Yes, that's right. For Christmas this year the Dennis family will get to have hot water. Our hot water heater, which was older than me (ancient for a hot water heater) decided now was the time to stop working. I'm sure it was very tired and more than ready for retirement but the timing kinda sucks. Fortunately for us our home owner insurance covers most of the cost, but things were really really tight as it was and a few hundred dollars or so... well, lets just say its a whole lot more than it used be. So, as we all open our dollar store stocking stuffers we will remember that the hot shower we just had was our real present. Maybe I should put a bow around the shower head? :)

3. More Than a Blown-up Appendix?

This is how Tony refers to his current medical condition. His "blown-up" appendix. I still can't believe that he burst his appendix and I didn't know. For those of you who didn't know about this... Tony came home Monday October 20th from his soccer game feeling sick. He said that during the game his stomach was hurting. We thought he was under the weather and had maybe played to hard. He stared vomiting that night and we thought "ok, its a stomach virus" we kept him away from the baby, pushed fluids etc. he was not running a fever. He had the vomiting for a couple days, but still no fever. I was starting to worry a little though, but then he stopped vomiting and got diarrhea. I thought, "ok, its moving its way down, good.." he complained of stomach pain, but I figured it was from all the vomiting, he still had no fever, so I kept pushing fluids and bland foods. By Friday he seemed to be getting better, but then on Saturday morning he woke up crying and in pain, and the vomiting returned. We saw the doctor asap Saturday, went from there to the emergency room, were admitted to the local hospital. They took a CT scan and blood work. The results showed an extreme amount of inflammation throughout his entire digestive system and multiple abscess's, one of them very large. They started talking about things like Crohn's disease. We were transferred to Seattle Children's hospital. The doctors/surgeons there said it was a burst appendix after all. The put a tube in through Tony's colon to drain an abscess the size of a raquet ball. He was in the hospital for 4 days. He was on iv antibiotics for 2 weeks, his surgery to remove his appendix was scheduled for Dec. 12th.

At our follow-up appointment with his pediatrician there was some concern about the fact that he still hadn't gained any weight back (he'd lost 6 pounds) and was still having stomach pain, loss of appetite, low energy etc. The pediatrician ordered some tests. It turned out he had C-dif. a bacterial infection of his intestines caused by the iv antibiotics. He also had elevated markers for inflammation and an elevated liver function. Crohn's disease was mentioned again. We were referred to a pediatric gastro-enterologist. She also mentioned Crohn's disease and ordered some tests to be performed at the Children's hospital in Seattle. After hours and hours of drinking nasty stuff, not eating, wearing a hospital gown, and getting repeated x-rays my little trooper was finally done. The doctor/surgeon at the hospital said things looked normal! YAY! The appendectomy is on for the 12th. All Tony's problems seem to be a result of the burst appendix, peritonitis infection, and then the c-dif infection. The appendectomy should resolve everything. whew.

4. Taking That First Step....

I am constantly amazed at how much I learn from my children. I sometimes think they are raising me as much as I am them. Drew learned something new this week, but he also gave me a bit of a lesson as well.

Drew's daddy taught him how to climb the step in our sunken living room. He basically just showed him it was possible by placing him at the step and helping him kinda scoot up onto it. Neither of us thought he'd be doing it on his own any time soon. WRONG! He saw me sorting the mail (on the floor) and wanted to play with the paper. It took him all of 5 seconds to scale that step and get into the pile of mail. Now he's doing it all the time, even faster. He can now go anywhere in the house as long as there isn't a closed door.

That step is pretty high to a little guy like Drew. He has low muscle tone and it is so much harder for him to move those muscles than it is for the rest of us. It took an amazing amount of strength and determination for him to climb that step, but he was motivated. It just goes to show that sometimes we need the right motivation to take that first and hardest step, and once we take it, it opens up a whole new world :)

Way to go Drew!