Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Fort Kn*x

     Gracie as a flower girl.  Could she be any cuter?

     Desperate times call for desperate measures.  This is what tired parents will resort to when they have a climber and they need to sleep.  If you look closely, you can see him in there.
     Here is a picture of Jackson when he was two.  He had white hair that would do NOTHING but stand straight on it's ends.  College kids thought he had the coolest hair!  When people see him who have not seen him in a long time, they will say, "His hair is so dark.  Did you dye it?"

     "Yeah, cause I have time for things like THAT!"

   Well, never believe me when I say that I am going to post the next day... which is what I said I would do on Sunday.   I might, but I wouldn't go betting large amounts of money on it.  I'd post more if all these people didn't live in my house... but then, what in the world would I talk about???

     So, the last time I posted, I mentioned my house being as secure as Fort Kn*x.  At least that's what Sarah said.  Who's Sarah you ask?

     Have I mentioned that in the last 3 years we have had 2 different girls live with us?  Darja is living with us now (2008-2009 school year) and Sarah lived with us in 2005-2006.  They have both done (or are presently doing) dietetic internships at a hospital near our house.  You'd think one of them could have given me some good advice on how to get skinny or something, but that's another topic altogether.

     Anyway, when Sarah lived with us, she called our house Fort Kn*x.  Actually, she said our house was more secure than Fort Kn*x.

     Allow me to explain.

     We have been living in our house 6 years in June.  And, in that 6 years, I can not begin to tell you the number of times people in our neighborhood have commented on the "weirdness" of the people who owned the house before us.

    I guess they were not only "interesting" people, but they were also paranoid.  Everyone is pretty sure there was a line item in their budget that allowed for a repairman of some sort to be at this house weekly, sometimes biweekly.  They left us a file folder bursting at the seams full of receipts and documentation.  Not only that, everything in the house was labeled.  Pipes in the basement were labeled hot and cold.  Vents were labeled so as to adjust for the seasons.  The garage door opener had a little piece of paper taped to it with the dates on which the batteries were changed.  We have the blueprints of the house.  We have drawings of the sprinkler head locations for the irrigation system, etc... This house came with a lot of bells and whistles.    And, you name it; it has some kind of documentation.  Don't get me wrong, some of this has been very beneficial to us.  HOWEVER, there is one line of service that I think they went a bit over the top.

     The home security system.  We noticed it when we moved here.  How could we not?  There was a keypad on the wall going out to the garage and there was a keypad in our bedroom.  The service had been terminated but something about the system still worked.  We could tell because a little red light blinked on the keypad when there was movement in the house. Numbers popped up on the screen when certain doors and windows were opened, etc....

     But, nothing could have prepared us for the way in which this system functioned.  I have seen home security systems.  There is some kind of indication when the security of the house has been compromised.  A loud beep, a siren... something loud enough to alert the family.

     Key words: alert the family.  The family needs to know.  The family needs to wake up and see if there is an intruder.  The family needs to get up and check to see if there is, in fact, a fire burning in their house.  The family and NOT the ENTIRE NEIGHBORHOOD.

     Nothing could have prepared us for that first October.  We had college students in our house for a pumpkin carving contest.  After scraping all the seeds out, one of the girls asked if she could bake the seeds.  While the seeds were baking, one apparently fell to the bottom of the oven and landed on the heating mechanism.  The smoke caused the fire alarm to go off.

   All of a sudden we hear a long, loud beep and then we hear a booming voice yelling:


     This repeated itself over and over and over.

    The students poured from our house with their hands over their ears.  Our children began crying hysterically.  And, Paul and I started panicking!!   

    The system wasn't monitored at the time, so the firemen were not going to show up.  The security company wasn't going to call us.  We certainly did not have the where with all to find the manuel.  

     Meanwhile, our neighbors had come over.  They were standing out with the students.... LAUGHING!!  Why? Because they can't help but to hear it!!  Plus, they'd heard it plenty of times before when Mr. and Mrs. Paranoid lived here.  NONE of them bothered to tell us this would happen.

     Paul and I were left to beat mercilessly on that keypad!  And, somehow, after what seemed like hours, by the grace of God, we hit some button or some combination of buttons that shut that forsaken computer generated voice up.

     It was after all the excitement that our neighbors lovingly showed us the MEGAPHONE attached to the roof of this house that will forever let EVERYONE in the neighborhood know EVERY time I burn something.


     We somehow managed to avoid setting that thing off again.  We managed until Jackson was about 18 months old.  

     You remember from the last post when I mentioned Jackson was a climber??  Well, the climbing started WAY before he was 18 months old, but when he was 18 months old, it was Christmas time.  And, since Paul always takes some time off around Christmas, we seem to always do some sort of home improvement project.  That year, it was painting.

   So, it happened that on Christmas morning, because we had been painting our room, we had a chair in our room pushed against the wall.   The chair happened to be right under the keypad of the security system.  Jackson, AKA THE CLIMBER, unbeknownst to us, climbed into the chair and pushed SOMETHING on the keypad.

    You can imagine the fear the four of us had when we were downstairs and all of a sudden we heard a very long, loud beep followed by:


     Of course Paul and I dash to the keypad to begin our beating of the keypad.  Meanwhile, the phone is ringing.  Paul left me to run to the phone hoping against hope it was someone who was going to tell us how to shut that voice up.  Instead, it was one of our neighbors saying, 

     "Don't you guys have enough to do over there??  It's Christmas morning!"

     Paul hangs (slams) the phone down.  As he was running back to help me, the phone rang again.
     It was another neighbor.  She was yelling, 

   " Free Santa!  Free Santa!!"

     Like we have him held hostage over here!  Come on!!!

    Again, we managed to get it turned off.  The next day I called the security company to come teach me how to work the system.  Who knew the trip out was going to rope me into some kind of a contract?  Oh well!  At least I could turn it off when needed.

     It was probably about a year after that when the system began going off in the middle of the night.  We would be in a dead sleep when the loud beep would signal.....
    " FIRE, FIRE, FIRE..............."

     The kids would come running in our room... sheet white, shaking and crying.  We'd turn it off, get them back to bed and then spend the next hour waiting for our adrenaline to quit pumping so we could go back to sleep.

     This happened on and off for several weeks until I got the bright idea that maybe I should call the security company and tell them.  They weren't calling us because we could turn it off quickly so they knew it was not a real emergency.  They came out to check, decided the main smoke detector was broke and installed a new one.

     The damage to our poor kids though, had already been done.  They were living in fear of the alarm.  We prayed for that alarm.  We cast the demons out of the alarm.  We spent hours explaining that it was there to protect us.  We showed them how it worked... but it was all to no avail.  The damage had been done.

     I knew the damage was severe one day while rehearsing some lines with Gracie.  Gracie was asked to be the flower girl in a wedding.  She was about 3 or 4 years old.  The bride and groom wanted her to walk down the isle and ring a bell.  While ringing the bell, they wanted her to say,

     "The bride is coming!!  The bride is coming!!"
    I thought it was unique and really cute.
    So, I was practicing with her one day and I said, "Ring the bell Gracie and say,  'The bride is coming! The bride is coming!'

     I gave her the bell and she began shaking it.  She said, "The bride is coming!  The bride is coming!  FIRE!!  FIRE!!!  FIRE!!!"

     The day of the wedding, as she walked down the isle ringing the bell, she uttered nary a word... probably because I laughed so hard the day she practiced.

    We are saving money for her counseling when she is older. 

     Signing off from the house more secure than Fort Kn*x,




Monday, January 19, 2009

Intelligent conversations and behaviors

     It's amazing that I can handle intelligent conversations with adults. Or maybe I can't. Now, that I think about it, maybe other adults don't think my conversations are intelligent. Hmmm....

     Well, I don't really care. I have too many other things to think/worry about.... like, 

     Are the bumps on Emme Chicken Pox?

     So, for now, I am going to pretend that I do in fact, have intelligent conversations with other adults.  And, it's a wonder because the conversations I have with these children of mine.....

     For instance, last week, Jackson missed his bus. I was just zipping his backpack up and that forsaken bus driver drove away. In all fairness, I usually have the door open BEFORE she gets to our house. And, I did open the door AS she was driving past AND he had not ridden the bus to school the last few days, but still..... frustration!! Emme was asleep, and I had no choice but to drive him to school.

     So, I gave the girls the run-down, made the house as secure as Fort Knox (another good story I'll share tomorrow) and headed out the door with Jackson. On my way out I said,

     "Shelby, you guys go ahead and eat lunch so when I get back we can get started on your schoolwork again."

     To which she replied,

     "Mom, I don't want to eat when an adult's not here. What if someone chokes? I don't know the heimlich manuver."

     I just stared at her. Are you kidding me?

     So, I think I said something like, "You're just having Beefaroni!! If you choke on that, you deserve to die!'

     Ok, Ok, I didn't really say that! I just said, "Shelby!" and walked out the door!


     Then, when I got home (and, yes, they had already eaten) Gracie was singing some Christmas song. I looked at her and said in a sad tone "Oh, I know! Don't you hate it when Christmas is over?"

     She said, "Yeah, (long pause) the problem with Christmas though is, all I think about is the presents. I don't think about Jesus one bit."

     So glad that my all my hard work, teaching them at home, day after day after day after day after day is paying off. I can see the spiritual maturity.... NOT!

     For the next conversation, I'll need to explain the layout of my house a bit.

     Our kitchen is open to the floor below. So, to get to the kitchen, any normal person would walk up the stairs. Not Jackson! Almost every time he wants to get to the kitchen, he runs over to a chair, grabs the railing that separates our kitchen from the living room, hurls his body up the wall and over the railing. I was so frustrated with his climbing one day, I said to Paul, "You have got to make him quit climbing up my cabinets and walking on the countertops!!!"

     Paul said, "April, I honestly don't even think he knows he is climbing all the time!"

     When Paul says things like that, I really want to punch him. He always defends Jackson and his boyish behaviors. BUT, if I say something like, "I CAN NOT quit eating that cake, it is so good!!"

     He will say to me, "Yes you can! You can stop! You don't have to eat it!"

     So, I can always help my behaviors but Jackson can not..... whatever!

     It pains me to say this, but in Paul's defense, one day Jackson was on the countertop and he was pulling himself up onto the refrigerator. I yelled, "Jackson, what are you doing!!!."

     He stopped, midway into the ascent, looked at me very puzzled and said (this was before his speech therapy), "I don't eban (even) know."

     He promptly got down and walked away.

     All that to say, he's still climbing. Periodically, he will get up on the counter and look on top of the refrigerator as if I have some secret stash up there. Almost every time he's up there, he sees a pack of matches and holds them up and says, "Look mom!"

     And, every time I say, "Yeah buddy, don't ever play with those, you could burn the house down."

     So, the other day, when he was looking for whatever in the heck he looks for on that refrigerator, he grabbed the matches, held them up and with a pleading look in his eyes he said, "Mom, here, you need to take these!"

     It was as if the temptation to strike one of those matches had gotten the best of him.

     I feel I should pause for a minute and say something really spiritual... like.... that's what we should all do with temptation in our life. We should stop when we are about to do something wrong and tell someone about it and let them help. We should flee like Joseph did when Potifer's wife was tempting him....

     Ahhh, there! I said it.

     Sometimes, when I think about my blog, I think I should show some depth and talk more about my relationship with Jesus. After all, He is the most important thing in my life. But, every time I sit down to write, I just vomit all this other stuff out. It just comes and I can't stop it. (Paul would say that I can stop it!) (Sometimes, I don't like Paul very much.)

     Just so you know though, I am applying my own advice. I am fleeing from something that I have let get the best of me. I have a good friend keeping me accountable in an area right now, I will talk more about it in approximately 33 days.

     One more thing because THIS IS THE LONGEST POST KNOWN TO MAN!!!

     Earlier I had mentioned Emme having red bumps on her legs. She also had a few on her finger, some on her arm, a couple on her ear and one on her foot. I think these red bumps appeared last Monday. Yep, one week ago. I thought they were a mild version of the chicken pox. It was an educated guess. The internet pictures looked the same as the ones on her body.
She had recently had a vaccination against the Chicken Pox. A mild outbreak a couple weeks later seemed very reasonable to me.

     However, when she woke up on Saturday, the one on the top of the left foot was VERY red and swollen AND when I touched it.... she about went through the roof!! Since, I NEVER let things go, like cavities (click) go, I decided to see if we could get her into the doctor.

     FYI, if you call and say something like, "My daughter has red bumps all over her", the receptionist will work you in.

     The doctor took one look at her leg and foot and said, "Hmmm, I think it might be strep! Let me look at her throat. Yep, very red! Let's look at her ears! Oh, the left one doesn't look so good. I am going to swab her throat. We should have the results in about 15 minutes."

     About 5 minutes later, the door opens, the doc walks in and says, "It came back VERY quickly positive for strep. The nurse is going to come in and give her a shot in each leg. They are going to hurt really bad! She'll be in in a minute."


     The nurse came, violently jabbed her legs with those wretched needles and walked away. For the next 15 minutes, Emme let me know how bad those shots hurt. She screamed herself to sleep.

     I drove away and was struck by a terrifying thought, "Emme has strep!!!! I let her stick her fingers in my mouth all the time!! OH NO!!!"

     Why does she like to stick her fingers in my mouth??? I don't know. Maybe it's because I actually have teeth... unlike her!  Who knows???

     Later that night, the swallowing began to hurt and sure enough, yellow stuff started growing on the back of my throat.

     Intelligent conversations.... intelligent behaviors like letting little people stick their fingers in my mouth... this about sums up my life right now!! But, I wouldn't have it any other way!:-)

     When I downloaded my pictures a bit ago, I had no idea that someone had caught Jackson in the action of climbing into the kitchen!

     There you have it folks!  Strep on the feet and legs!

Friday, January 9, 2009

Emme and her eating issues (oh, and my issues too!)

     First of all, I just want to reiterate, that I, have issues.  I have said it in the past (click here). But, I have reached an all new level.  

     I have neglected my blog.  And, it's not because I don't have time to write.  I have time.  3 times a day I have forced down time.   Two times a day, I lay down with Emme until she falls asleep for her naps.  At night, I lay down with Jackson while he falls asleep.  During those times, I always have my computer with me.  What else am I supposed to do?

     I used to write in my blog during those times.  I wrote in my blog during those times, until Dec 11.  On Dec 11, I made my usual rounds to my favorite blogs.  BooMama is one of my favorites.  On Dec 11, she had a post entitled Crackwords (click).  She talked about some game she found that she couldn't stop playing.  

     I should have stopped there.  But, I am nosey (no comments from the Peanut Gallery), so I had to dig around to find the name of the game.  Oh, I found it alright!  

    It's called Pathwords.  It's just a silly word game.  There's a bunch of letters and one has to make a path from the letters to find words.  Each game last 5 minutes.  What's worse is.... it's played on Facebook so you play against all your friends and it ranks you in order according to score.  It's not even about the score or the ranking anymore.  I just can't stop.  I see words in my sleep.  I see words all day and think, "Ewww... I bet I can make that word on Pathwords."  

     I am too embarrassed to tell you how much of my life I have wasted on this game?  Ok, how about a prize for the closest guess?  (I'll do anything for a comment or two.) (Hint: guess in hours... how embarrassing!) (Darja, (she lives with us), you can't guess!  And, you can't tell Gina!)

Enough of that...

     This picture has nothing to do with Emme and her eating issues.... I just love the picture.

     Our friends came in from South Carolina over Christmas break.  Those two cute blond boys... that's 2 of their 3 children.

     I think we are going to be old-school and go back to arranged marriages.  Our girls are going to marry those boys.  Won't they have the cutest kids?  I mean, David, the one holding Emme, wanted to hold Emme.  What 13/14 year old boy wants to hold a baby?  Where's the contract?


    Last Tuesday morning we headed out at 7:30 am, IN AN ICE STORM, to take Emme an hour away to the children's hospital.  We had an appointment at 9 am to see the feeding team.

     In case you are unfamiliar with Emme's eating issues, let me just give you the rundown.  There's a laundry list of them.  She frequently throws up.  She starts gagging and coughing when you put her in her highchair to eat.  She cries when the feeding begins.  She TRIES to throw up her food.

     We have had found nothing anatomically that would cause this behavior.  So, apparently, we needed a team to figure it out.

     We talked for awhile, told them all about Emme, played for awhile, etc...  Then, they wanted to see her eat.

     We were to bring a variety of foods.  Things she likes ( Uh.... NOTHING!!)  baby food, food with textures, etc...  We were also to bring all the things we use during her feedings... spoons, cups, bowls...

     You know how kids NEVER perform when you want them to???  We'll not this time!  She was true to Emme form.  She gagged, she cried, she coughed, she tried to throw up.

     When it was over, I was so excited for this team to tell us all the things we were doing wrong.   After all, we tell her "no" when she starts to gag and cough.  It makes her cry.  Certainly, this can not be the right approach.   If she throws up, we make her eat more. Meals are supposed to be pleasant.  They sure the heck are for me:-)

     Do you know what they told us?  They said, "You guys are doing a great job.  You are doing everything right."   Can you believe that I DID NOT want to hear that?

     I wanted them to tell me what to do!

     They even said her chewing was good!  They her responses to food are learned behaviors.  At one time, it probably hurt really bad to eat (reflux), so she didn't want to eat.  But, since she is upright more, walking.  And, since she is developing a lot of muscle, this should not be an issue.  I guess strengthening the core helps with the reflux.

     They said that she is going to be fine.  If they didn't believe that, they said they would be having us come in weekly and talk about a feeding tube.

     The team gave us a higher calorie formula.  Information on some kind of powder we can buy to sprinkle on her food.  It's 45 calories a tsp.  I'll probably get this mixed up with my sugar free Stevia and blow up like a balloon.  Good heavens!

     Anyway, since that time.  Guess how many times she's thrown up?  (I'll get there is a second.)

     It's like she knew her jig (good Pathwords word) was up.  After the marathon appt, we went to lunch and she was  sticking a fork in Paul's chili and eating it!!  Are you kidding me?  DO you know how much money that appointment probably cost me?

     After we had been home awhile and Jackson had had enough time to illegally eat his snack in the family room  AND leave it on the coffee table...... this is what I walked in and witnessed...  

     Sorry for the poor quality photos.  They are from my phone.

     Emme has thrown up twice in the last week.  Once because I gave her a bite of her cousin's birthday cake.  I think it was too dry and she gagged.  A small amount of the food she had just eaten came up.

    The other time was last night.  It was because I stepped on her hand.  I think it hurt so bad she threw up!  Poor thing!!

    So, there.  Basically, you are caught up.  I am done with Pathwords.  I have confessed it as a sin.  Unless of course, any of you have any really good words that start or have the letters v, k and z in them.  Kidding... just kidding!!!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Christmas Eve

     If my daughter, Shelby does not grow up to either 

    a) write songs
    b) plan events
    c) direct movies or plays

I will think the earth has fallen of it's axis.  Because she has been doing all of these things for as long as I can remember( Well, not the movies).  I am pretty sure she slid out of the womb and started singing.  I just don't remember because all I could think about was the pain of having something really big come out of something really small....  I also remember thinking that all my friends were a bunch of liars because that epidural didn't do jack squat for me.

     Anyway, she sings everything... math facts, bible verses, books, etc...  And, there have been many, many times when she is singing and I will say, "Where'd you hear that song?" or I have learned to just say, "Is that a real song?"  Her songs really are that good... sometimes.

     And, if she is not singing, she is planning something.  For instance, she already has a title for the family vacation that we will be taking in September with Paul's side of the family.  Holden Beach Goes International.  She has informed everyone that between now and then we need to research a country.  Then, while on VACATION, we are to give a report on our country.  On the last night, we are to prepare a food from our country and then we all settle down to an international feast.  

     We humor her for awhile, but then at some point, if the monster planner is not stopped, we end up with some crazy event.  You know how I know this???  Because two years ago, she planned a prom.  Nobody ever stopped her and before I knew it, I had kids dressed up at my house waiting to dance and eat pizza.  You think I am kidding!

     So, it was no surprise to me that when she found out her 6 (soon to be 7) cousins were coming in from Alabama, a Christmas play was quickly in the works.  Parts were assigned, a script was written and a list of necessary materials was thrust into my hands.  I scratched most of the things off the list.  Paint?  "Oh, it's ok if  it's hot pink".... because certainly The Inn and the stable and manger were HOT PINK!!!!!!!

     I think she was given access to a box and some scissors.  Ok, and some costumes.  I'll warn you now, they are rough costumes.  It was a very low budget production.

     We also had to get the keyboard over to the grandparents house... because what's a play without music and sound effects?

     There were several scares that the production might not make it off the ground.   I mean, baby Jesus (aka Emme) was not about to cooperate.  And, Jackson and David... they DID NOT want to be shepherds!!  

     But, alas, the play began.

The angel (Camille) announcing the birth of Jesus.  Although, now that I think about it, I am not sure she said a word.

Here's Jackson, the shepherd.  Can you see why he might balk at the idea?  Poor fella.

Shelby made good use of her box- it became the stable.  I noticed there was also a gold bow that I think was supposed to be the star.  That was not on the list of materials and I believe it was stolen.  And, poor Joseph (Joe), he's having a hard time keeping his composure.

Joseph and Mary (Gracie) greeting the sheperds.

And, there's a shot of the director and the videographer.

     You should know that about this time, the play turned into complete mayhem.  Now that I think about it, I am not sure anyone actually said any lines.  Big surprise.  Instead, the director announced the events as they were occurring... changing the music when necessary with the keyboard you can see at her side.

      When the director changed the music to Joy to the World and announced that there was some rejoicing, dancing, or possible moshing, took place.  The stable was torn down and costumes came ripping off.

     I think the play lasted a total of.... um .... 3 minutes.

    You know, it was very funny.  But, it was also VERY precious.  I know these things won't go on forever.  So, while I have a little fun with it, it is memories that I will forever treasure.  And, as for Shelby and all her crazy planning... I really love it.  She is so fun and creative.  She is also very teachable with a very sweet spirit that loves the Lord.  I can't wait to see what he does with her.

Until then, I will enjoy watching her.  Here she is conning her sister out of her brand new DS before going to bed on Christmas Eve.  And, apparently, she is a bit absent-minded like her mother.  She has Christmas written on her hand.  I mean, she might just forget if it's not on her hand.

And, for some reason, Jackson needed to play his DS in Emme's crib??

Merry Christmas to all... and to all a great 2009!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Christmas Top Ten

     So, I took a little break from the world o blogs... or a big break.

    Since a lot has happened since Dec 19, my last post, I thought I would take a few days to highlight our ever eventful life from the Christmas season.

     Today, I give you:

     The Top Ten Events of Christmas with the Isaacs (in no particular order).


       I mean, my body was present and accounted for.  But, I was so sick on Christmas that I barely made it to my mom's.  Once I was there, I laid on the couch for 4 hours.  Slept right through dinner and who knows what else with 12 adults and 10 (11 if you count the one in my little brother's wife's oven) little kids running around.

     If you can't pull it together on Christmas Day with 4 little ones.... you must be sick.  That is why we:  A) don't have many pictures from that particular day  B) Jackson wore his pj's ALL day and C) the whole gang looked a bit rough.
     I was actually sick (severe achy body, fatigue, stomach virus, etc...) from Christmas Eve until Dec 29.  MERRY CHRISTMAS!


        Paul asking, "How many times do you need to go shopping?"  

        I am pretty sure he still believes in Santa Claus.  He thinks Christmas just happens... it's like magic!


     Making sugar cookies with the kids.  I don't know why they like this so much.  They never look like the ones in the magazines.  As a matter of fact, they are scary ugly.  And, I am pretty sure Jackson went into diabetic shock with the amount of icing and sprinkles he ingested with one cookie.  Nonetheless, a little Christmas music and lots of sugar is always a good time and a good memory.


     We have a tradition of going to dinner and a movie during the Christmas holiday.  Hollywood always seems to release several of acceptable movies during this time.  

     This year, we decided to see Bolt in 3D.  It cost $48 for us to see a matinee showing.  After they revived me with the smelling salt..... good golly!! Is it necessary for a movie to cost that much?!!  We all really loved the movie even though Scrooge here would allow nothing from the concession stand.

     After the movie, we went out to a nice dinner.  Then we walked around the mall.

     In the mall, Emme grew tired of the stroller so Paul carried her.  Jackson seized the opportunity to be wheeled around.  At one point, I felt the stroller tipping.  Jackson was bending down to pick up a $2o surrounded by other $20 dollar bills... laying in the middle of the mall!!!!

     We gave the information desk our name and number in case someone came looking for their $80!  But, alas, no one called.  

     Guess how much I gave Jackson?  NONE!  It almost paid for dinner and the movie.  Thank you Jesus!


         Need I say more?


         If you can imagine a 3 month old walking, then you can imagine what our little Emme looks like walking around.  Yep, she's walking!!

         In 3 1/2 months, Emme went from not being able to roll over to walking!  She can also go up and down all the steps in our house.  

         In November, we had a well-check for Emme.  4 weeks later, on Dec 28, we went back to the doctor for a weight check.  Guess how much she gained?  Nothing!  0!  Nada!  Not one ounce. We are now scheduled to see a feeding team on Tuesday.  The following Tuesday we are scheduled for a video swallow study.  Sounds fun, huh?

     She did grow a little over a half an inch.

4.       Emme and Elmo

          About a month before Christmas, Gracie and I went to Toys R Us with Emme.  While we were there, we showed  her Elmo... the one that blows kisses, dances, tells stories, etc...  At the store, Elmo is only demo mode.  So, the only thing he does is blow kisses.  I think Gracie and I pushed the button about 20 times.

      My mom and I went in together to buy Elmo for Emme.  We let her open it at my mom's so we all could see her.  The minute she could see Elmo she blew him a kiss... just like he does.  She remembered it from the store!!  Everyone was cracking up!  She is so smart!


       Or, at least he gave it his best shot!  He opened guitar hero and started putting stickers all over the guitar... not in the right places.  Like over top of things that needed to be opened thereby ruining the stickers.  

     Then, he received the coveted Nintendo DS from his grandparents on Christmas Eve.  Thank goodness.  If I heard DS one time in November and December, I heard it a million times

     I knew he was getting it so I bought him a case for it.  The case is intended to protect the DS.  It is designed so that the when the case is opened, the DS itself opens... except when you put the DS in BACKWARDS!!!!  So, we couldn't get the case off because when we tried to open the case, the case was trying to open the DS... at the hinged joint.  I just knew we were going to break the DS.  But, we only ended up breaking the case.  Grrr!!

         2.  Wii Fit

                I never could find a Wii Fit.  But, Paul's parents did!  So, they bought it for us for Christmas!  Yea!!  I love it!  

               I was too sick to get on it until 5 days after Christmas.  Now, I am the Wii Fit hog!!  Hey, I missed out on a lot of time!


             We all call this friend Miss Pam.  Of course, her name is Pam, but even Paul and I call her Miss Pam.  

             I'll have to tell you the whole Miss Pam story another time... it's a good one.

             But, what you need to know is.... Miss Pam only lives 3 1/2 hours away.  She had to fly because her husband wouldn't let her drive.  She's 44 years old.

             He was so worried she'd get a flat tire.  She argued and pleaded and begged.  Then about a week and half before she was to come, she got a flat tire, on the highway, in the driving rain.  She told him the flat tire was out of the way, but to no avail.  If she wanted to come by herself, she had to fly.

            I about ruptured my bladder when she told me she may have to have a layover in Atlanta first.  Atlanta is a good 10 hours from my house!

           She found a direct flight and she arrived the day after Christmas.  Yep, I was sick!  And, if that wasn't bad enough, we picked her up and drove an hour and half so I could see another friend that I had already planned to see who lives on the West Coast.  9 hours later, we made it back to my house.

        The next day I either slept or paid tribute to the porcelain God.  It was a great trip for her... not!!!

       Although, she met and fell in love with Emme.  And, I guess that really was the point of the trip.

      Hope you all had a great Chirstmas!!  Anything interesting happen to you?