Wednesday, October 31, 2007

One more bit of good news

Something I forgot to mention in my list of good things. . .When the Red Sox won the World Series, we got a free sofa! We had bought our furniture at Jordan's during their Red Sox World Series promotion last Spring. Now we wish we had gone for the more expensive set!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

God doesn't give us more than we can handle!

I want to thank all of you who have sent words of support and encouragement and apologize for not updating everyone sooner on how my parents are doing. I think I've been letting it all sink in.

Mom was discharged from the hospital last week and is physically doing very well. I think she gets tired, but is becoming stronger and steadier on her feet everyday. She will see the doctor again on Thursday and will hopefully be cleared to take a shower and wash her orange hair (from the iodine).

Dad's surgery was slightly delayed due to a mass that was found on the sonogram. The gall bladder surgery ended up being a full open surgery instead of the laproscopy that was originally planned. They removed the gall bladder and 18 inches of the small intestine which was cancerous. He is slowly recuperating from the surgery and was moved from the ICU to a regular room today. As of right now the path report on the cancer has not come back (a week later) to indicate what type of cancer. He was seen by the Physical Therapist and was up walking for the first time today. He's in room 115 at St. John's Hospital in Leavenworth.

Our neuro appointment last week went well. Melanie demonstrates more signs of Chiari than Kylie does (balance and incoordination) so she will be given an MRI next week. . but the neurologist doesn't seem to think it will show anything. Kylie's issues are more related to her overall low tone and some bloodwork was done for her, but no MRI. Tom took the whole day off work and we went to lunch and shopping after the appointment. It was a fun and much needed family day.

Although, Kylie was still a little under the weather on Thursday from her cough. She slept from 5:00 that evening until 7:30 the next morning. That night, Melanie woke up at 10:30 after vomiting in her bed and proceeded to be sick all that night. She missed school Friday but was better for the weekend until she started coughing on Saturday. She seemed fine by Monday morning so we sent her to school and I went to work. Soon the school nurse called and said she had a coughing episode as soon as she got off the bus and vomited in her classroom. Luckily Tom was able to get her while I finished my testing at work, then I came home to find her feeling pretty good with just occasional fits of coughing.

Kylie seemed back to normal yesterday except for a weird rash that had developed over her back and chest. She kept complaining that her back hurt and was up a couple of times during the night. The rash would go away for awhile and then return mysteriously. This morning, rash was gone and she was doing well and had a good appetite for breakfast. Then 5 minutes before she was leaving for school she complained her tights were hurting her stomach. I hoped for just tights that were getting too small and sent her off to school. Sure enough 1/2 hour later, Tom is calling me to tell me Kylie threw up at school. After some coordination he was able to pick her up and stay with her until I got home. He did a great job cleaning up the inside of his jeep, her sheets, mattress, clothes and her!

So, my friend Kim was able to visit my dad the other day and reported he looks good and is handling things well. The title of my blog today "God doesn't give us more than we can handle" comes from Kim. So, that is my mantra this week! Let's just hope Tom and I don't end up getting sick with the stomach bug (we've both been coughing already). Oh, and somewhere in all this the Red Sox won the World Series, right?

I will also continue to focus on the other positives. . .
Mom is doing well.
They found the cancer because of the gall bladder.
The girls aren't sick with anything serious.
Maybe we'll get all our sickness over with now and be free and clear all winter.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Chiari, Gall Bladders, Wildfires, Fevers, Mold and the RED SOX

It has been a crazy week for our family. . .

Mom underwent surgery on Monday for Chiari Malformation. She was diagnosed a few months ago due to dizziness, headaches, neckaches and various other symptoms. This is somthing she has had her entire life, but because of recent changes in her spinal canal, she has had the recent onset of severe symptoms (other lifelong symptoms include incoordination and balance issues). The cerebellum part of the brain has herniated below the skull and limiting the flow of cerebral spinal fluid to and from the spine. Coincidentally, Extreme Makeover Home Edition featured a family on Sunday night who all suffer from this condition. The episode was very informative and educational, so check it out if you want more information. You may need to download the media player in order to watch it, but the entire episode is featured in the link below (copy and paste).

Something the episode really highlighted was how hereditary this condition can be. With Melanie and Kylie having some similar syptoms, I thought it would be important to have them evaluated as well. We made an appointment with a neurologist in Boston several months ago and that appointment is tomorrow.

Mom's surgery seems to have gone fine, but Dad has been struggling with stomach pain and issues for a couple of weeks. He has avoided going to the doctor because he wanted to wait for Mom to get settled. But yesterday the pain was too intense, so he finally visited the doctor who ordered a sonogram. He was immediately hospitalized and will undergo gall bladder surgery this morning.

Eric was in San Diego for work through all of this and was affected by the wild fires. His meetings were canceled and they were afraid they would get stuck there, but he was able to get out and back to KC ok (he mentioned his rental car had 1/4 inch of ashes on it).

Kylie woke up last night with a fever of 103 and was miserable. We canceled a bunch of activities today, but she seems much better. She ate 3 pieces of toast this morning and two full cups of pink milk. For those of you who know her well, you know that this is more than she usually eats in a whole day. I think she's feeling better!

This all comes just after we had the Disaster Specialists at our house for four days completely cleaning our new basement of mold damage from a toilet overflow. We had to throw away a ton of stuff. All in all it was about $8000 worth of damage but luckily our home owners insurance covers it.

Soooo, with all that going on the RED SOX start playing the ROCKIES tonight. I have to say the Rockies are probably my favorite National League team because of my large family contingent in Denver who are ALL avid sports fans. So, Aunt Karen, Uncle Bob, Cindy, Kenny, Todd, Kim, Ryan, Kelsey, Lauren and Erin. . .check out the impression one Cape Cod guy has about the Rockies team and Coors field. . .it's kind of funny, but don't take it personally! I know that where the Rockies play is much more urban than where we live. I love the fake mountain in the background!

Tom was able to go to the last two playoff games against the Clevland Indians and had a blast. He may be able to catch one World Series Game (he's got a connection). At the playoff game on Sunday night, Tom ended up visiting and hanging out with Trot Nixon's wife for several innings. His friends took pictures, but I haven't seen them yet. If I get some I'll post them to the blog.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

The Cat, the Spider and the Jack O'Lantern

Today we worked on carving our pumpkin. Wow, we couldn't pick an easy pattern could we? Well here is the result. Doesn't look too bad! Just don't look closely at the spider's legs.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Pumpkin Time

We finally made it to the pumpkin farm this weekend. The girls had a blast picking out their pumpkins. Usually we get one for each family member, but somehow we now have five on the front porch and two inside. Daddy is just such a pushover when it comes to Kylie's sweet puppy dog eyes.

In other news, things are super busy around here. Melanie's 2nd grade teacher broke her ankle and we are now in week three of a substitute teacher. Rumor has it that her teacher won't be back until Christmas! Anyway, things are stressful with that change in more ways than one.

I have had 3 job offers in the last week or so. I think I will accept one and a half of them. When it rains it pours!

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Go Red Sox!

Playoff baseball starts tonight and we're ready! Even Jayhawk is getting into the spirit!

Hey. . .aren't those daisies in front of my house gorgeous? I was really excited to see my favorite flower start to bloom last week. I never know what's going to come up next.