Friday, March 30, 2012

8 Month Pregnancy Update

How far along? 34 weeks

Mood: Nervous! I think the reality that we are about to have more kids than adults in our house has set in.

Maternity clothes? I just about live in sweatpants, t-shirts, and dresses because that is the only thing that still fits. I can't wait to start working out and wear regular clothes again!

Sleep: What a difference a month makes...I can't think of the last time I had a good night sleep! I can't sleep on my back, and when I sleep on my sides my shoulders and hips hurt! And once I finally get a comfortable position, I have to get up to pee...this pattern repeats at least 5 times a night.

Energy Level: I still have motivation to get stuff done, just no energy to do it and even if I did the bed rest limits me.

Best moments in the last month: Seeing Bennett again at my recent ultrasound (pics coming soon)

Movement? All the time, but especially after I eat or when I am lying down. I can also feel Bennett hiccup almost every day!

Cravings: Sonic Ice!! (It is out of control!)

Baby purchases this month: Car seat and the stroller my aunt bought us arrived. We also got all of the baby clothes out of the attic and started washing them.

What I miss: A good night sleep, walking without panting, and margaritas!

What I am looking forward to: Seeing baby Bennett!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Deacon's New Trick

Our little adventurer has found a new way to access water, now that we have learned to close the toilet.
Yep, he discovered the sink! At least it is a little more sanitary...
A few weeks ago he figured out that he could climb on the closed lid of the potty and get on to the sink. It wasn't long before he jiggled the handle enough that water appeared.
Have I mentioned how much I love doing even more laundry now that we have frequent wardrobe changes!?!
And yes, he knows how to open the door to the bathroom... lol

Monday, March 26, 2012

Sunday Extravaganza

When Brian and I first started dating, he and his friends hosted weekly "Sunday Extravaganzas" at their apartment pool. We would spend the day grilling and swimming. As everyone got married, had kids, and moved farther away from each other our Sunday get-togethers slowly stopped. This weekend I was reminded of how much fun it was when we had our own family version, by pulling out the sprinklers and boiling crawfish. A couple of Carson's friends from the neighborhood also joined us.

It's only March, but the weather here in Texas has been even warmer than usual. We got up to almost 90 degrees this weekend. We lathered the boys up in sunblock and they spent hours playing in the water.

When just playing in the sprinkler got old, they pulled it over near the trampoline and jumped in the showers.
Brian and I soaked up the sun while watching the boys and eating his best batch of crawfish yet. Carson loved the crawfish too and worked on shelling them himself, while Deacon munched on cheetos and popsicles.
In the midst of all of the fun, Carson and his friends agreed that it was the best day ever! :)

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Dining Kid-Style

Earlier this week I had cabin fever so bad that I HAD to get out of the house! I didn't care where we went, as long as I got to see something other than the inside of our house. We decided on somewhere easy where the boys could play: McDonald's! They renovated the play area a couple of years back, so now instead of tubing to climb through, it is more like large boxes, big enough for adults to get in with toddlers if needed. Deacon usually doesn't like places with the tubing because he tries to stand up and then bumps his head. He loved this place and for the first time climbed all through the playground smiling and laughing. Carson made some friends and had fun playing too!

Brian was wonderful to get in there and help Deacon, while also capturing some great shots of the boys.

The night we received Deacon's EEG results we had dinner at a local Mexican restaurant to celebrate. The weather was gorgeous, which made outdoor dining a must, but the best thing about this place is that they have an inflatable obstacle course and just added mechanical bull riding! So while waiting for dinner, the kids were occupied! Our cowboy, Carson, rode a few times and Deacon had fun just getting to jump and explore.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Purple Day

Growing up I had one friend with epilepsy. I never saw her have a seizure, but from what she told me she would fall on the floor and shake. The only cause for concern from epilepsy I knew of was the chance of injury from falling or driving when the seizure happened. Before Deacon, that was the only experience I had with epilepsy in 28 years.

Since then, I have learned what a tragic impact it has on the lives of 3 million Americans and 50 million people worldwide, Deacon being one of them. The effects of seizures varies so much but can cause physical disabilities, cognitive delays, Autism, and as you know from Deacon, speech and vision problems, just to name a few. Like us, I'm sure each night there are thousands of parents losing sleep over guilt, worry, online research, and weighing decisions about medication and brain surgery in hopes that their most prized possession overcomes this disease. We have found others online who are taking on the seizures as well, and lending advice while sharing their story: Bennett (yes, his parents have great taste in naming their children!), Trevy, and Sophie.

If you follow our blog, you know at least one person with epilepsy. In honor of Deacon, and all the others living with seizures, please join us in sharing Epilepsy Awareness by wearing purple on Monday, March 26th.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Deacon's Latest EEG

Deacon after his recent EEG

Deacon had an EEG back in February to see how he was responding to the change in prescription to Valproic Acid and B6. His neurologist and I have been playing phone tag for the past couple of weeks, so when I was in the area today picking up Deacon's B6 prescription (we have to special order it from a compounding pharmacy near his office, about 30 minutes away), I decided to stop by and at least get a copy of the report to hold us over until we can talk.

With a year of neurological research under my belt, I am definitely no professional, but have come to understand a lot of what is written in the reports. Before I share the results, here are parts of his previous EEG's. They are pretty wordy, so I tried to summarize, paraphrase, and define as much as possible.

January 17, 2011
Patient with abnormal EEG. No evidence of occipital rhythm, indicating disturbance in cerebral function (reason for his vision problems). In addition, there is 3-4 hz high-voltage slow wave activity (high voltage & slow wave is the worst to have) mixed with spike and sharp wave activity in occipital (vision) and temporal (speech/memory) regions. Epilepsy diagnosed.

October 5, 2011
This EEG is very abnormal because of multifocal spike wave discharge (seizure activity in multiple parts of the brain), but mostly in the left-mid temporal lobe (speech/memory). Poorly organized, not well-sustained, medium-voltage (5-6 hz) activity (which means some improvement b/c medium voltage is better than high voltage) seen symetrically. No clear focal slowing seen (also better).

February 18, 2012
Well organized, well sustained 7-8 hz (see how the number is getting bigger each time, that is good) activity seen symetrically. Sleep stages normal. This is a NORMAL awake and asleep EEG!!

Again, I haven't talked to the neurologist about his impression, but the report looks optimistic. Praise God!

Will update again when I get more information.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Spring Break

Carson's Spring Break started off with some bad weather, but he wasn't going to let a little rain get him down! He put on his raincoat and would run to a friend's house to play, or bring them back with him.

When the rain finally stopped, we took Deacon out to play in the puddles.
At one point, Brian yelled to me from the kitchen window to go outside and see what our oldest and his friends were up to. This is what I found:
Last time Carson was in Grapeland, my dad bought him a rope to lasso with (lasso what, I'm not sure...). He and his friends tied the rope to an ice chest and took turns pulling each other up and down the street!!

The next day I "snuck out" of the house and we met some friends at Discovery Green, a huge park in the middle of downtown. They were hosting a free foam party, so we packed lunches for a picnic, and bathing suits to play in the water and foam. The weather wasn't quite warm enough, and the water was a little too cold for Deacon. He lasted about two minutes before he was shivering. Carson, Lucas, and Evan were a little tougher!

While the foam party sounded great in theory, we soon found out otherwise. A local radio station advertised the free event and the place was packed! I had assumed they would have huge foam machines blowing out into the open field, but they contained it in an inflatable corral and then didn't monitor the amount of people going in. It was full of teenagers and adults and the foam was so high that if a little one went in, the foam was above their heads. Deacon stayed in the stroller with us, and we let the big kids go in together.
They were out about a minute later, covered in bubbles and missing a shoe! I don't think they were too thrilled, but we got our photo! :)
That night Carson woke up at 1am complaining that his ears were hurting. After taking him to the doctor, we found out he had a double ear infection and strep throat! The doctor gave him antibiotics and ear drops and said he would be contagious for 24 hours, so he spent all day Wednesday in bed.

Like clockwork, 24 hours later he felt a million times better. Brian's parents took a couple of days off for the break and picked him up Thursday evening. They went ice skating and to his cousin, Jakob's karate.
On Saturday, they went to the rodeo!
(And sometime during his stay, Carson talked Grandma into getting him a new pair of Nike's...notice them below!)

In addition to the petting zoo, they hit up the carnival.
We met over at Brian's parents after church on Sunday and enjoyed the beautiful weather by grilling burgers outside. Carson was not thrilled to learn that his vacation was coming to an end and it would be back to school on Monday...only about 10 weeks left until Summer!!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Spring Sprouts

This may not be the most riveting blog, but we are thrilled about it! Mother nature amazes me every year as seasons change, but our little garden has been even more incredible to watch! I can tell the difference between morning and evening and can't help but photograph the progress.

After only a week of being planted, all of the seeds began to sprout!!
The next day, Brian told me to go outside and check out the garden, and I could already tell a difference!
...and again today! With as fast as things are growing, Brian added some lattice for our climbing plants to grab on to.
As a reward for our little project, we decided to add a fruit tree to our backyard too. Brian took our Cheeto boy shopping at a local nursery for a navel orange tree (and jalapeno plant).
We planted a magnolia tree a few years back that didn't make it, but we are hoping our little orange tree will! The blooms on it smell amazing.
I promise not to blog about our garden again until we have an actual piece of produce to show!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Farmer Brian

We have talked about building a vegetable garden in our backyard every year since we moved in five years ago. I love the idea of saving money, eating healthy, and feeling a little self-sufficient. I, unfortunately have the opposite of a green thumb. Black thumb, maybe? In college, my roommate and I even killed a cactus that was growing in our dorm room...I didn't know it was even possible to kill a cactus, they grow in the dessert for crying out loud!

Anyways, Brian knew he would be going into this endeavour alone (well with my moral support). I don't know if it is the fact that we have kids, or just that we are somewhat night owls, but most projects that go on in our house happen at night. After work on Friday, Brian stopped by Home Depot (between our garage renovation and now this, I'm thinking we should have purchased stock...) to get his supplies. He bought 2 raised garden frame, 16 bags of top soil, 4 bags of garden soil, 3 tomato cages, seeds, 3 tomato plants, 3 cucumber plants, and 2 squash plants for about $160.

In addition to the plants, Brian also planted a variety of seeds: purple whole peas, green beans, corn, watermelon, green onions, okra, and carrots. He is so proud of his little garden, and with this rain spell we have had the past few days, hopefully we will have some fresh veggies in the next couple of months.
Carson and James also helped him plant the remaining corn today. I think Carson is just as excited as Brian!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Friday Night Fun

Bennett's new car seat arrived today! After doing some research, we decided on the Chicco Keyfit 30, which got great safety ratings along with excellent reviews from parents. I wasn't completely sure on the color, but it is so gorgeous in person and more plush than either of the infant seats we had for Bennett's older brothers.

Carson decided to test it out and let us know what he thought, while posing for pictures.

Like any other kid product, the real fun comes with the packaging itself! We poked holes in the top and ran Christmas lights through, creating a nicely lit tunnel for the boys.

We know how to kick off Spring Break partying! ;)