Wednesday, September 10, 2014

First Day of School 2014

Carter, you are adorable, but you have never been a fan of getting your picture taken in the morning. 

Ethan, you are starting 1st grade and you are so excited! You love school, all of your friends, and you have been telling us that your teachers name is Ms. Tortoise and we've been explaining to you that she is not a turtle...her name is really Ms. Torres. I hope you call her by her real name at school. ;-)

Clara, welcome to America! We hope that you love living with our family as much as we love having you here! We hope you meet lots of friends at the high school and share all of your experiences with your friends and family back home in Germany. 

Mariah, this was your last first day of high school! You were pretty emotional the night before your last first day. You laughed so hard that you cried and cried so hard that you laughed which scared your boyfriend, Ryan, but made me laugh and cry with you. We love you very much and wish you the best last year of high school. Make it a great one peanut. ;-)

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

So much to catch up on...

As I look through my blog drafts I realize that I've missed a lot of events:Mariah's first car, trips to the Milwaukee Zoo, 4th of July (2013), the color run, Ethan's preschool graduation (he's in 1st grade now!), camping 2013 and 2014, turning 35 (and since 36...), bring your child to work 2013, Mariah's homecoming dance 2013 (it's almost homecoming 2014), Cory and my trip to California, the first day of school 2013! Where have I been?! I have a lot of catching up to do!

We are still here! Kids, your mom has been busy keeping up with all of you. I've been taking pictures, but haven't been doing very well with writing about the moments and posting the pictures on our blog. I promise, I'll do better this year!

Monday, September 8, 2014

I'm not a writer, I'm a mom...

I write this blog so that my kids will always remember the special moments in their lives. I'm not good at scrapbooks, diaries, journals, or even documenting the special moments with cute keepsakes. Instead I keep a large bin for each child where I throw their memorable items in hopes to dig through that bin some day and make something special.

I have a fear ~ a lot of fears really ~ because I am a mom. One of my biggest fears is leaving my children early or losing one of my children. I pray long and hard and I soak up every moment that I get with my kids. This is happening more and more lately as I read stories that say "hug your kids", "hold your kids closely", "taken too soon".

This morning I learned of the passing of a past coworker. She was one of the happiest people that I had ever met. She was a stylist at the salon that I was apprenticing at almost 15 years ago. She was seven years older than me, but treated myself and the other apprentices and new stylists like we were just as important to the salon. She was happily married to a man that she loved with her whole heart. She was positive about everything in life. We lost touch as the years past, but I learned that she opened a salon of her own ~ one of her dreams. She was successful, had two beautiful children, and had a life to be thankful for. Everyone that knew her loved her.

She passed unexpectedly. These words weigh so heavily on me. She was active, ate healthy from what I remember, and she loved Jazzercise. She talked to everyone about Jazzercise and even got us to join her once in a while. She was, in my eyes, a model-healthy-person. Yet an unexpected health tragedy took her life this weekend at the young age of 43.

I can't imagine what her husband, son, and daughter are feeling at this moment. You will be greatly missed Nicki.

Nicki's situation is my biggest fear.

I'm not a professional writer. I don't need people to comment on my blog. I just need a place to write my thoughts so that my kids can read them as they get older whether I am here with them or not. I need a place to keep my memories and hold on to pictures so I can look back and reflect. That is what this blog is for me. My memories, open, for everyone to share. 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Hot Air Balloon Festival

July 2013 - Yes, I am WAY behind on blogging... but working on getting caught up now.
Waterford, WI has a Hot Air Balloon Festival every year in July.  Last year we stopped out to see the excitement.  There were a ton of vendors selling crafts, toys, and food.  Lots and lots of delicious food.  There were games for the kids to play, music to listen and dance to, and best of all, hot air balloons.  Have you seen a hot air balloon close up?  They are beautiful.  Some day I would love to take a ride in one. 
Carter looks less than enthused in the picture below, but he really was loving all of the excitement. 

They lit the fire in front of us, played music, and filled up the balloons.  It was a windy day so the balloons couldn't leave the ground, but seeing them up close and in person was amazing.  They are huge! 

I even snuck in a horribly fuzzy picture with my husband.  ;-) After all, some times it's about capturing the moment and not the clarity. 

Monday, February 17, 2014

Carter's Reaction to Omnicef

On April 12, 2013, Carter woke up with hives.  He was on day seven of omnicef for an ear infection.  At first I didn't think the two were related, because he had been taking the medicine for seven days.  I thought if he was going to have a reaction it would have happened right away, but boy was I wrong. 

I took him to the walk-in that originally gave him the omnicef for his ear infection.  They said that he was reacting to the meds and these types of reactions can happen at any time.  He said we should stop the omnicef, give him some benadryl, start him on a steroid, and begin giving him a z-pack because his ears were still infected.  

We went home that evening and did as we were told.  We thought he was getting better by late Friday night.  Saturday morning was a whole different story though, he woke up with a swollen face.  His hives were worse then they were the day before.  I got nervous, but knew that we had directions from the doctor to continue the benadrly and steriods and things should get better. 
Cory and Ethan left the house Saturday morning to go to a fishing seminar.  We figured that Carter and I would be okay at home because we had the meds that we needed and I planned to watch his every move to make sure he was getting better.  When Cory left the house with Ethan, Carter had a complete meltdown.  I quickly put Carter in the bathtub to try and cheer him up.  He loves bath time.  I'm glad I did this because as soon as I stripped him down and put him in the tub, I noticed bruising spots along his spine and under his armpits.  Fortunately, the bath time had him in good spirits, by once I saw the bruising I started to panic. 
I dried him off while trying to remain calm.  I called the walk-in and told them I was coming back with him and that he had bruising from the hives.  I called Cory and told him the plan and Carter and I rushed out of the house.  The walk-in doctor saw us right away and said we needed to go to the ER.  I asked if I needed to drive to Children's or if the local ER would do?  I was trying to remain calm, but wanted to know how serious this was.   The doc said Children's would be best, but I had to promise not to speed.  Ah... yeah...okay... have you seen my baby?!

I called Cory and we agreed that our local ER was closer and we should start there.  Cory and Ethan were packing up at the fishing seminar and planned to meet Carter and I and the ER.  By the time I got to the ER I was shacking and tears were running down my face.  I ran in to the ER holding my almost two year old baby tightly in my arms.  The ER nurses saw me and waved me in through the doors.  They quickly walked us back to an ER room while asking our names and what was going on.  Within two minutes we had a doctor and multiple nurses in the room hooking Carter up to an IV.  They gave him a histamine blocker which helped to reduce his hives and bruising.  

Can you see the bruising along his spine in the picture above?  It was scary.  We stayed at the hospital for a couple hours.  Cory and Ethan got there shortly after they inserted Carter's IV.  Carter was scared and in pain.  They drew blood to check for organ damage from the severe reaction.  Carter screamed like they were attacking him.  He had no idea what was going on and I was doing all that I could to comfort him.  He started to dose off after a while, but while he was sleeping the nurses came in and said they need more blood.  They had to wake him to poke his little body once again.  This time he panicked.  They got done taking his blood, which took Cory and I holding him down with all of our might.  When the nurses were done and we let go of him, he climbed off the table and crawled across the floor and hid under a chair.  We tried to get him out from under the chair, but he was traumatized.  He screamed.  He screamed like I've never heard any of my kids scream before, as if someone were attacking him.  Cory tried to get him out from under the chair, but even he failed.  We decided to leave him on the floor and I sat down next to him.  Any time I tried to touch him he started to scream even louder.  My heart broke.  I had no way to console him at that moment so I sat on the floor next to him and cried with him.  
Time passed and he started to calm.  I picked him up and held him tight for as long as he would let me.  He asked to sit back on the bed.  He was getting better.  The meds were helping.  We were on the right track.  The test results came back normal.  None of his organs were compromised.   We were blessed.  We were able to go home and continue on with the z-pack, benadryl, and steroids.

We thought the hospital trip made things better, but Sunday morning he woke up with a bright red face, swollen and bruised legs and feet, and swollen hands.  I called the doctor and they said this is normal.  Fortunately, things got better within the next couple of hours and that nasty swollen, bruised reaction never came back.   This event was one of the scariest times of my life.  I pray for all of you with allergies or with children that have severe allergies.  They can come on in an instant.