Thursday, July 31, 2008

My Baby is 5!

I can't believe it but Ewan turned 5 today!
I have been trying to think of all the ways he has matured over the past year.

  • Learned his letters and numbers and how to write them with his LEFT hand--although writing isn't his favorite thing to do
  • Knows his address
  • Can write his name
  • Learned how to ride his tricycle with great success
  • Knows a LOT about all kinds of animals and dinosaurs
  • Made lots of friends
  • Learned how to dress himself
  • Learned how to cut with scissors
  • Can do a somersault
  • Can ride a bike
  • Talks "older"; he still makes a little bit of a "w" sound for Ls and Rs but the little kid voice is much less than it was a year ago
  • Can have a fabulous conversation about all kinds of topics

We told Ewan that once he learned how to ride his tricycle really well then he would be old enough for a bicycle. Well, the day has come and Ewan got a bike from his Mimi and Papa for his birthday. We went yesterday to pick out the bike and even though the humidity was 90% and muggy yesterday we went out to the big parking lot near our house so he could ride around. He had NO trouble at all transitioning from a tricycle to a bike. Seeing him ride on such a big boy bike made my heart hurt just a little. It made me see how much older he is getting. I am thankful he still loves hugs and kisses and doesn't mind holding hands most of the time when we go on walks. He still wants me to play with him and snuggle with him at bedtime. I know those days won't last forever so I am learning to enjoy them while they are still around.

He is so proud of his bike and we are so proud of him! So here are some pictures of him on his big boy bike!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Bandages Removed

Jon got his bandages removed on Monday and it is a pretty greusome sight to see. In these pictures you can see the button on the top of his finger and the string that is attached to it. In the second picture you see a rubber band attached to the string. That rubber band attaches to the safety pin on the splint to keep his finger bent at an angle. It is pretty painful for Jon and the stitches are driving him crazy. He has an appointment next Monday to get the stitches removed. His hand will stay in the splint for the next 6 weeks. He can remove it for cleaning but under NO circumstances can he bend his wrist back. He must keep it angled down at ALL times for the next 6 weeks or risk snapping the tendon again.

He has started physical therapy and it is already hard. Pray that he will endure the pain that comes with healing and that the pain will continue to subside substantially.

Another praise is that the rehab center is covering the copay that our state insurance wouldn't cover. Woo-Hoo!

Also, another thing to pray for is that his finger flinches involuntarily and causes him enormous amounts of pain. His finger flinched last night while he was sleeping and he was jolted up out of sleep writhing in pain. I don't know if it is doing that because that is how the healing process works but whatever the reason, it would be nice if he wasn't woken up from severe pain.

Things haven't been too bad around the house. Jon has needed to sleep more than normal but it hasn't felt too stressful without his ability to help as much. And he is doing what he can which helps a LOT. The kids have been great about not roughhousing with him and keeping distance from his wound. All in all it is going well but I think it has been more painful than Jon thought it would be. Keep praying for good spirits around here, if ya don't mind!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Surgery Follow Up

Jon's surgery went well and thankfully, the doctor was able to work with the tendon tunnel and the tendon and pull it back through and reattach it. That means that there will be no follow up surgery (Praise The Lord!). Strangely, his tendon is attached to his finger (on the inside) by sewing a button on the outside of his finger and attaching the tendon to the button from the inside (or something like that). You can see the button outside his finger in the picture. Jon starts physical therapy on Monday and his hand will be wrapped in "a claw" for the next 6 weeks. His thumb is the only digit exposed so he is pretty limited in his activities but he is managing well so far. He has been pretty doped up on vicodin (which means sleeping a lot and being a little more grumpy than normal) but even with the meds he is still in some pain. His finger flinches involuntarily and that makes his skin crawl (ouch!).

After 6 weeks though, the claw will be removed and he will be able to use his hand normally, although carefully for a while. I don't think I will have to do any paper typing for him--whew!

Thanks for praying because the surgeon was very surprised that he could work with the tendon and the tunnel. Normally the tendon is pretty scarred and the tunnel is closed after so long of a period between injury and surgery. I think God answered our prayers and even planned things to work out in advance. Juggling all the kids would have been MUCH more difficult had my mother not been here to help out. I had to stay at the surgery center the whole time he was in surgery so having my mom on hand was a life saver. We didn't plan the surgery around my mom coming--it all just worked out that way. And, the surgery got moved up a week which was even better because the surgery was supposed to happen the day before Ewan's 5th birthday party. I think God was taking care of us, for sure, for sure! Praise be to Him!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Jon Is Having Surgery

Tomorrow Jon is having surgery on his finger (ring finger on left hand).

We originally thought it was broken but it turns out he snapped his tendon. This surgery is part one of two. They will be cutting an incision in his finger, zig zag down his palm and possibly into his wrist to work on pulling his tendon up a little and also inserting a rod to reopen the tunnel that his tendon originally went through. Part two of the surgery involves taking tendon from another part of his body, running the tendon through the tunnel, and then reattaching his tendon to the upper part of his finger so he can have full movement and use of his finger.

His finger will be put into a splint that forces it downward toward his wrist for 6 weeks. That means that he will not be able to do any typing of significance. Thankfully summer Greek doesn't require any papers but when the fall semester starts he will have many papers to write so we don't know how that will work yet. We also don't know how long surgery #2 is from surgery #1 so it is possible that he will be able to type or I may be typing papers for him.

So friends, pray for us. This will be a bit of a challenge tomorrow caring for kids, getting Jon to surgery, getting him home, and taking care of him post-surgery. I also have to teach a class tomorrow night. Thankfully mom is here so we have some help in house but the day will still feel a little stressful. Jon has class on Friday and a quiz to boot so pray for him that he will get all his studying in this afternoon since tomorrow he will be too out of it on drugs. He may not be able to participate in class very well on Friday since he will be in pain + on pain meds + recovering from previous day pain meds. He feels it is better for him to go if at all possible because if you get behind in Greek it makes it much harder to learn.

Doing general dad duty will be a challenge for him too--especially when the boys will easily forget that daddy's finger is in a splint and painful. They will still want to wrestle and play like they normally do.

Pray for Jon and I in particular that we don't take out the stress on each other--okay, pray mostly for me about that part and that his finger heals nicely and quickly.

Thanks and we'll let you know how it goes!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Win Some Baby Slings!

Wouldn't it be cool to win all these slings?

I'd love to have these so my Bradley students can try different ones during my classes!

Win the Essential Babywearing Stash from Along for the Ride (one Beco Butterfly, one Hotsling baby pouch, one BabyHawk Mei Tai, one Zolowear Ring Sling, and one Gypsy Mama Wrap)

You can enter the contest too by July 31st for a chance to win.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Graham 10 months

Graham has had a little jump in his development in the past 3 weeks. He is hands and knees crawling instead of army crawling, pointing, clapping, climbing stairs, saying "eh-eh!" and pointing when he sees puppies (I think he will start making the panting sign for puppy soon), cruising along furniture (slowly but steadily), sleeping all night (still waking up pretty early but sleeping 11-12 hours).

He loves a good game of "So Big! So Strong!" If you don't know how that game works, you raise your hands over your head and say "So Big!" and then flex your arm muscles and say "So Strong!" Graham has the So Big! part down and makes a really cute scrunched up face for the So Strong! part but that is harder to get on camera.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

You know your 4 year old is excited when....

He wakes up at 5am, grabs his new Hotwheels cars grandma brought yesterday (she is here for a visit), and goes upstairs to visit her in bed, ready to play and start the day.

5am, people. 5am. It was still dark! He was marched back to bed (by me) and told to stay there until 6:30.

Do you think he went back to sleep?

Monday, July 14, 2008

The Great Pittsburgh Fly Infestation

What's grosser than gross?

Hundreds of flies invading your house and basement. That is right. Hundreds of flies. No, we don't know where they are coming in from and we couldn't find a source in the house (thank God!) but they have been flying around the house (mostly in the basement) for 2 days. At first we thought we had left the front door opened too long. But then, on Saturday afternoon there were so many in the basement we thought that surely there must be SOMETHING down there breeding flies. But we couldn't find anything!

So we got some fly traps and the grossness began. Jon left one light on in the basement and put a fly trap next to it the other night and when we got up the next morning this is what we saw. Totally gross, I know!

I almost didn't share this because I didn't want anyone thinking we are gross, dirty people. We aren't, I promise. Thankfully most of the flies have been in the basement and I am cleaning as I go. (Insert body shutter here) The last thing I need is Graham picking up dead fly carcasses and getting some terrible disease as he crams them into his mouth. Blech!!!!!!!

Highlights from the Canada Trip

Here are all my favorite pictures from our trip to Canada. Warning: There are a LOT.

Seeing wildlife-frogs, a raccoon who liked to eat marshmallows, a fox, fish, chipmunks
A campfire
Boat rides
Eating together
Celebrating Ewan's birthday (early)
Blueberry picking
Swimming in the lake
Going for walks
Picking wildflowers
Playing games at night

Black Flies

Going on a boat ride.

Jon took this picture of his grandma (Gamma). I love it! She is so delightful to be around and she has great love for her grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Ewan and Mimi working on a project together.

The night of the campfire. The boys had their first smores and stuffed themselves silly with roasted marshmallows. Notice Ewan's puffy cheeks.

Singing during the campfire.

Crawling happy Graham.

Graham tried really hard to eat pine cones. He thought they were tasty but I tried to convince him otherwise.

Celebrating Ewan's 5th birthday. It isn't until the end of the month but since we were all together as a family we celebrated it a little early. Mimi and the kids made the cake. I think it looks like stained glass.

Me at the party.

Our family at the blueberry patch. I wore a sweatshirt because the mosquitoes and deer flies were terrible. I finally gave in and sprayed myself with bug spray--but I kept the sweatshirt on for extra protection even though I was sweaty.

Ewan at the blueberry patch. The patch is in a park area and the blueberries are wild and free. It was a little early in the season but we got lots of yummy berries to eat on our cereal in the morning.

Isaac liked to eat more than pick them and put them in his pail--as you can see.

All the cousins together picking.

Daddy and Graham together. It is quite a lovely view.

Me with my boys. It isn't a very good picture of me but I like seeing us all together.

All smiles.

Daddy and Graham in the lake. The water is pretty cold in the lake but Graham didn't seem to mind too much. We didn't keep him in for long periods of time but he liked splashing around.

Future boat racer?

Crawling around in the cabin.

This is Big Beefy. He was 18 3/4" and 3 lbs. I caught him with a worm (real). I knew I had a bite but I didn't think he was that big when I was reeling him in. He didn't fight much while I was bringing him in either. We were so excited though! There is nothing like catching a big fish!

Another boat ride.

Ewan liked to sit in the front of the boat in the middle. It does provide the best view.

All the cousins. This before a boat ride.

All the kids fishing in the boat with Jon and Mimi. Everyone caught something
(mostly rock bass) and had a great time.

I just liked this picture of Isaac.

Daddy and his boys from their great fishing experience.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Too Many Close Calls in 24 hours

Yesterday we were walking home from the basketball courts at the end of our street and going down the driveway of the parking lot when a man driving his car started to turn into the parking lot. He was not paying attention to where he was driving and was heading straight for the boys who were running. I started yelling at the top of my lungs and the man snapped back into reality, stepped on the brakes, noticed the boys, and moved out of the way. He was a few feet away from the boys, not inches or anything, but it still scared the **** out of me. My legs were shaking and it took me a while to calm down.

Then.....Graham decided that he can climb up stairs. I was in the kitchen cleaning something I brought up from the basement and Graham was with me. He crawled out of the kitchen and I thought we was in the dining room. Next thing I know I hear Isaac say, "Yeah! Grammy, you can go up the stairs all by yourself!" I ran to the stairs by the front door and Graham had climbed all the way up the stairs to the platform between the first and second floor and was about to start crawling down the stairs into the kitchen. The stairs that lead to the kitchen are very steep and of course, he doesn't know how to go DOWN stairs yet. I had the gate up to the stairs in the kitchen so it was faster for me to run around to the other entryway to the stairs (if that makes sense). I picked him up and thanked Jesus that Isaac was right there and said something. I was so thankful that Isaac likes to celebrate Graham's accomplishments and that I got up the stairs before he plummeted down them.

Like I said, too many close calls for one day.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

The Jungle Garden

My garden bloomed over the past week while we were gone on our trip. Here are my tomato plants. They are HUGE and are sadly overshadowing one of my sweet pepper plants. I don't think it will fruit because of it. I knew it might be overshadowed and I have two other sweet pepper plants in a pot. They are blossoming and my cherry tomato plant has some baby tomatoes on it. Can't wait to eat them!If you enlarge this you can see my watermelon plant on the bottom and my pea plants on the right (where the stakes are). You can also see the tips of some of my radishes.

Baby cucumbers.

My lettuce. So easy to grow and I will definitely be doing that again next year but probably in a bigger pot so I can get more harvest.

The garden from afar. You can see my pumpkin plants where Ewan is. They are HUGE too and I know they will spread over the yard. I hope we get some pumpkins off of them.

Another shot of the cucumbers.

Pumpkins, radishes, peas and okra. The peas and okra aren't that big yet. I had to move the pumpkin leaves so the okra would get more sunlight. Once the radishes are harvested then the okra will have more room to grow. You can't get okra up here for some reason. Must be a southern vegetable.

We're Back!

We are back from our trip to Canada to hang out with Jon's family. I got some AWESOME pictures and we had a blast. I'll have a longer post later. I know it has been a while since I posted but we were gone and I have also been teaching 2 birth classes and posting regularly for The Mom Crowd. It has been harder to post regularly and sometimes I am stumped at what to blog about since my brain is working on other things.

Anyway, check back again later today or tomorrow and I'll have our Canada trip posted.

Thanks for reading!