Monday, July 22, 2013

Lilah’s 18 Month Photo Shoot



St. Theresa Summer Social

Saturday evening, we went to the St. Theresa Summer Social with Grandpa, Grandma, and Aunt Allie.  The weather wasn’t on our side, but we still managed to have fun.  We ate some food and then the kids were able to go through the bounce house obstacle course.  They didn’t even charge us because it looked like the storm was coming.  After the bounce house, they played some games and picked their prizes.  At this point, it was raining, so we headed inside to look at the stuff in there.  Once the rain slowed down, the kids made a few trips back out to get some sweet treats.  We came home full of goodies and a little soggy….signs of a good night!


Movie Date with Clayton

Saturday morning, Aunt Dawn called to see if she could take Macie to the movies with Clayton and Jamie.  I said sure.  Brian and I were grocery shopping at the time, so Aunt Dawn picked her up at Allie’s house.  They went to see the movie, Turbo.  Macie loved it and they said she was very well behaved.  She got popcorn, candy, and lemonade at the movie.  On the way home, Aunt Dawn got her some McDonald’s food.  Jamie sent me a picture of them at the theatre.  Thank you Aunt Dawn for thinking of her and spoiling her!!



When the kids stayed with Grammie and Pops for the weekend, they went roller skating for the first time.  They went all of the way around the block and loved every minute of it!  Thanks again Grammie and Pops for keeping the kids for us while we went away on our weekend!


Cooling Off


Sunday, July 21, 2013

If you have two pair you like…

…why not wear one of each!


LJ’s 18 Month Checkup

Friday morning, I took Lilah to see Dr. Voyles for her 18 month checkup.  Ironically, she turned 19 months that day.  I had to take all three kids and I was a little nervous about it.  Gavin was a stink all morning.  I told them that if they were good at the appointment, we would fill up the pool after nap.  They honestly did pretty well.  LJ was not too thrilled to see Dr. V, but the other kids were.  He let them play with his equipment and joked around with them.  He had a resident with him and he asked if it would be OK for her to check out Gavin’s leg.  I smiled and said yes.  Gavin never seems to mind and he is a rare case they can learn from.

As for LJ (the kids have Dr. V calling her that now), she weighs 24 lbs 3.5 oz (66th percentile) and is 31 inches tall (16th percentile).  Her ears looked good and she is right where she should be developmentally.  Dr. V was surprised to see some 2 year molars in her mouth.

We finished the appointment with shots and a finger prick for anemia.  Lilah wasn’t a fan at all and the kids had a hard time watching her get so upset.  At one point when she was really crying as Dr. V was looking at her, Gavin walked up, started rubbing her arm and saying, “shh…it’s ok baby”.  It was the sweetest thing!  Thankfully, he numbers were good and no more shots until she is 4!

At the end of the appointment, the nurse let all three of them pick out a toy from the drawer and Lilah got a sticker.  It as a crazy, stressful time for me.  She doesn’t have to go back until 2!

Macie’s Day #7

Macie always has ambitious plans for our time together.  We settled on working in my classroom, going to the library program, lunch at home, and Chuck-E-Cheese.  Once again, Macie was a big help at school and we got a lot done.  Her library program had an ocean theme this week and she made goggles.  We ate lunch at home and attempted to nap, but that was a no go.  In the afternoon, we went to Chuck-E-Cheese and Macie was excited to see they had moved some things around and added some new games.  In one game, she won 40 tickets!  The game kept beeping really loudly.  She was so excited!  At the end, she picked out a piece of candy and a shark dart shooter.  We don’t have many more one on one days left before school starts, so I try to enjoy each and every moment with my kiddos!


Gavin’s Day #8 ~ Riley Trip

Last Wednesday, we went to Riley for an appointment with Dr. Haggstrom.  On the way there, we stopped at Teppanyaki for lunch.  Gavin has started asking to go there every time we go to Riley.  We can’t go every time, but we try to make it our special thing.
We made it to the appointment just in time.  After talking with a few residents and Dr. H, we decided it was time to go ahead with the compression sock.  Gavin is having more pain in his leg and will time himself out from activities that are physically exhausting (playground, outside play, walking at zoo, etc.).  Dr. H prescribed a sock that will cover his entire foot and right leg up to his thigh.  The goal is for him to wear it all day and only take it off for bed, bath, swimming, etc.  Dr. H was very honest with us that kids his age struggle with them and don’t like them.  She said this is going to be a lifelong battle and to not make it World War 3.  Based on how well he does with the sock, she may prescribe a low dose of aspirin to help with blood clot prevention. 
In our experience with Gavin, if we just tell him it has to be, he will do it.  We may have a few issues at first, but Brian and I have decided to just make it part of his life now.  He is so young, he probably won’t remember life without it!  Before we left Dr. H’s office, a different resident asked if she could come in and feel Gavin’s leg and look at it.  We are often reminded how rare he is.  We always knew he was special though!
When we left Riley, we went straight to Hanger Clinic to get fitted for his sock.  We called the lady to see how to get there and she said she would fit us in because we were out of town.  Gavin’s sock has to be custom made.  The guy measured him and we picked the color and fabric.  There weren’t many colors to choose from, so we went with the caramel color.  It will hopefully hide the most dirt!  The guy picked a thicker fabric that will be more forgiving for a three year old to wear.  He also added some extra elastic at the top to help keep it up on his thigh.  He told me we will be able to hand wash it. 
We asked the guy how often he will need a new sock, and he said approximately every 3 months.  He will have to get remeasured and then a new sock ordered.  As for the cost….each sock, for one leg costs a little over $800!  Insurance may or may not cover it.  The lady said that with his diagnosis, they won’t.  She said she would change the word and have Dr. H sign off on it.  If they don’t cover it, we agreed to pay $409.  That would be every 3 months!!  Fingers crossed they cover the sock and we don’t have to pay that much.  Brian and I are reminded more and more how much money Gavin’s medical expenses require. 
We will pick up his sock when we go to our next Riley appointment on August 20th.  Our ride home was uneventful.  We go back to see Dr. H in January.  After we get the first sock and see how much insurance does or doesn’t pay, we are going to look in Evansville to see if we can find a place to make them here that may be more convenient and cheaper.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Cincinnati Trip ~ Marriage Encounter

The reason that Brian and I went to Cincinnati is because we had signed up for a World Wide Marriage Encounter (WWME) weekend.  Originally, we wanted to do a local Community Marriage Builder weekend, but it never seemed to fit our schedule.  Brian started doing some research, and found the WWME .  It is Catholic based, but open to anyone.  It happened to fall on the weekend of my birthday and we thought that was perfect!  Brian and I hadn’t been alone and away from the all of the kids for that long since before having kids.  We were very much looking forward to our weekend and it didn’t disappoint!
When we told a few people where we were going, most of them asked if we were “OK” or said they only thought you go on weekends like that if things are bad.  That is not the reason we went at all.  We went to make our relationship the best it can be.  Our goal was to make an average marriage great!
When we signed in, we were greeted by a couple who helped us with our bags and walked us to our room.  They showed us where the first presentation was and when to be there.  The hardest thing about this weekend was that we had no idea of times and what the schedule would be.  I am a very schedule oriented person, so initially this was hard for me.  Brian and I also decided to not watch any TV and to limit cell phone use to contacting our kids once a day.  Once we let all of that go, it as very freeing.  Odd…but freeing.  All meals were included Saturday and Sunday so there wasn’t much to worry about.
This weekend was life changing for us!  I honestly can’t say that enough.  I’ve always loved Brian and known that he was my best friend, but I look at him in a totally different way.  I am more in love with him today and look so forward to our life together.  I would recommend that every married couple go on a WWME.  It as an emotional and eye opening experience. 
We had a few breaks and we were able to take a walk and a jog.  On our walk, we went to a tent that was selling plants.  They had some free pepper plants and Brian just couldn’t pass them up!  I only let him take a few and we kept them in our hotel room.  It was quite funny.
The weekend ended with us renewing our vows and then all of the presenters hugged us and sent us on our way.  As the main presenting couple gave us a hug, they asked us if we would be willing to stay in our room and wait for them for a few minutes.  We said we would.  On the way back to our room, Brian and I were anxiously wondering what they wanted to talk to us about.  A little bit later, all 7 presenters (3 couples and a priest) came into our room.  They said that they saw something special in us and asked if we would be open to being presenters some day.  They told us that all 7 of them individually put our names down and that some weekends they don’t find any couples.  Brian and I stood there a little bit in shock.  We had jokingly said that we could do something like that someday when we signed up, but there was nothing serious about it.  We said we were open to learning more.  Both of us were very flattered and we have a phone meeting set up for next week.  Who knows where this path will lead us, but we are letting God guide us.
On the way home, we stopped in Louisville and ate at Old Spaghetti Factory for my birthday dinner.  It was delish!  We made it home and were wiped out.  We unpacked and crashed!
I couldn’t wait to get the kids the next morning and get life back to normal. 

Cincinnati Trip ~ Day 1

Brian and I took the kids to Sturgis first thing Friday morning.  After dropping them off, we headed back to Evansville for a quick stop at GFS before we were off on our adventure.  We didn’t have to be at the hotel until 7pm, so we took our time and enjoyed the trip.  We stopped at a few rest stops for a picnic lunch, potty breaks, and maps of wineries.  Brian and I had been to many wineries in Indiana, but none in Kentucky.  We ended up going to three, stopped at a random store, and drove through a beautiful park.  It is always an adventure finding the winery and the setting is always so picturesque!

1. Smith-Berry Vineyard and Winery: This was our first stop.  We tasted several wines and liked most of them.  The girl was really nice and it made us remember why we enjoy going to wineries so much!  We bought a bottle of their rose and snapped a few pictures before we headed to the next place.


2. General Butler Park: This is a random park we drove through in search of a winery.  It was beautiful and had some amazing views.  We parked for a few minutes to get out the gps and I wish I had my camera with me and not just the phone camera.  It was breath taking!

3. River Valley Winery: We weren’t really that impressed with the wines at this one and even less impressed with the guy giving out the samples.  He was very anti-social.  Brian and I thought it was kind of funny and still bought a bottle of the blush wine.  The setting was really cool though and Brian took a picture of their garden, of course!


4. Choctaw Jim’s: One of the wineries we tried to go to was closed, but on the way we saw this store and decided to stop in.  It was a neat store and was packed with anything and every little nick knack you could imagine!  We had fun looking at all of the stuff and Brian ended up buying some Cajun Alligator jerky.  They served food and everything was wild meat, like, alligator, bison, elk, and venison.  It was a quirky little shop!  The picture of me below is oh so flattering, but it has the sign for the store.


5. Elk Creek Vineyards: Our last stop as Elk Creek and it was by far our favorite!  We liked just about every wine we tasted, the atmosphere was amazing, and the guy working was a lot of fun.  We had a hard time choosing which bottle of wine to buy, but we settled on a watermelon wine since it is different.  After tasting, we went upstairs to look at the art they had on display.  This is a winery I would highly recommend and one that we hope to go back to some day!



After all of the stops, I was ready to get to our destination.  It had been a long day in the car.  We got to the hotel a bit early.  We weren’t sure if we were supposed to check in then or not.  They said to go eat and came back.  The mall was right next door, so we went and grabbed some dinner and walked around a bit.  When it as time for us to check in, we headed back to the hotel to start the weekend adventure!