Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Off to the Doc We Go

Sunday morning, Helen Grace woke up with a really stuffy nose. Monday night, she started coughing. Tuesday afternoon, Grandma called me at work, and the poor baby had started wheezing, panting to breathe, and was lethargic and not eating. I immediately left and met Grandma at the doctor’s office. I couldn’t have been more thankful for Grandma and Peggy to be there, especially because after this experience back in November, I swore I’d never go back with her alone.

She freaked out a little as we walked in, but Grandma and Peggy kept her entertained/distracted through the short wait. When it was our turn to go back to get weighed and leave G & P in the waiting room, she started crying a little, but somehow I was able to convince her it was ok to sit on the scale (30.8 lbs) and that the thermometer was tickling her. She calmed down and actually enjoyed getting her blood pressure taken and height measured (37 inches). She was so proud of herself as we waited in our exam room for the doc, and when Dr. Butler arrived, she even smiled and spoke with her. HG even let her listen to her heart and check her throat and ears, and she might even have enjoyed it!

Then, Dr. Butler told me what she wanted to do to her- a finger prick for white blood cell count, nose swab for flu, and a breathing treatment. WHOA! I had to call in Grandma for reinforcement. She was calm until the needle hit her finger and the blood sent her over the edge. Then, she jerked when the swab went up her nose which really hurt her. Finally, she had a sneezing fit when the mask hit her face.  All together traumatic. She eventually calmed down a little though, she almost fell asleep in my arms with the mask on her face, and afterward, the wheezing was very minimal.

The flu test came back negative, but her white blood cell count was really high. The verdict was either bronchitis or croup and she was very worried about the wheezing, so she sent us home with an antibiotic, steroids, and an inhaler. She slept relatively well (in our bed, of course), only waking up once for juice. Today, she has been WILD and BAD. I’m blaming the steroids. But her appetite and energy are back, and the wheezing only reappeared once the meds starting wearing off late this afternoon. I think we are on the way to recovery, thank goodness! It was terrifying to watch her struggle to breathe. I’m praying this is the extent of our winter illness.

Proud of herself for being a big girl, waiting for the docsick- table “Heehee, that tickles!”sick- doc Ok, this isn’t funny anymore.sick- breathing

Daddy caught us in a scarily similar position at bedtime. What can I say? She’s my girl!twins


Helen Grace told her daddy that if he were patient, the birds would come to the new bird feeder. Today was the big day! While HG was sitting at the table for a mid-morning pizza snack, I noticed both kitties sitting in the window and thought it was a cute pic. As I stood up to snap the pic, I noticed why they were sitting there so still…a bird was on the feeder! Throughout the day, we saw two more and even a squirrel. I have a feeling we’ll all spend a lot of time at the kitchen window in the next few months.

“Say cheese, Momo!” (love that pizza-covered face!)poor momoSee the birdie on the pole?!kitties

Granddaddy watched HG for me this afternoon, and he sent this pic to me during naptime. This cuddle brings tears to my eyes for more than one reason. Granddaddy’s arm that she is cuddled up against is the same arm that a very nasty and rare cancer attacked almost six years ago. So many wonderful and God given things have happened to bring us from that period of panic to now, and I am eternally (and tearfully) grateful.gdaddy nap

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Princess Helen Grace

In one day, Lilly was able to do what it’s taken me more than two years to do…get Helen Grace to dress up in a princess costume! Lilly hosted a girls only princess party for her third birthday at her castle, and I picked up a Rapunzel dress for her, hoping that would convince her to wear one. The party was at 1:00, so she fell asleep on the way there. She woke up a little grumpy and wasn’t interested in putting on the dress until she decorated a wand, but then the princess vibes were flowing. She happily got dressed and kept saying, “I Punzel!” Cinderella stopped by for a visit, a craft, a dance party, a story, and cake and ice cream. While HG still didn’t want to get too close, she was excited to see her arrive and sat very still and eagerly listened to her read a story. They even had a box of shoes, crowns, and boas, and Helen Grace was really struck by the shoes. She scooted around in ‘glass’ slippers five sizes too big for most of the party. She really handled herself like a champ at a wild party during her naptime, but by the end of the party at 3:00, I was eager to get her in the car and let her fall ASLEEP. Thanks, Lilly, for having a birthday and for getting my big girl into a princess costume!

lillyHelen Grace and the birthday princesslilly2 HG and Emsley, clinking their wandslilly2.5 Listening to Cinderella’s storylilly3 Happy birthday, Lilly!lilly4 lilly5 lilly6

Super Helen Grace!!!!

Ooooooh, how I wish my hubby would let me share a pic from his childhood with you to put next to this one of Helen Grace!

Picture this…a blonde haired Johnny (around 4 years old)  in a shirt, socks, and whitey tighteys with his hands on his hips and a green, handmade cape on his back. And a big ‘ole silly grin on his face.

Looks a LOT like this little superhero…


Since HG was sick for Callum’s superhero birthday party, his mom brought a personalized cape for Helen Grace to church that she made for all of the party goers. HG’s had a big time running around in it, screaming, “I’m a superhero!”

Baby Punzel

We were doing so well with bedtime until a week or so ago. Now, she’ll go down without too much trouble but will wake up and walk downstairs two or three times a night. Wednesday night, HG slept ALL night in her bed with no field trips downstairs, so we went to Target after work on Thursday for a reward. She picked out a Rapunzel baby doll, and she’s been tickled pink about brushing her hair and toting her around.

punzel punzel2 punzel3

Week In Review

Bird Feeder   Grandma and Peggy gave Helen Grace a bird feeder for Christmas, and John hung it outside our kitchen window. Spiffer was pointing out that it had her name carved on it, and HG responded with, “There’s no H in bird.” John has really wanted the birds to show up, but HG reminded him, “You gotta be patient, Daddy. Birds will come.”

Freak Out  One night this week, I caught Helen Grace tip toeing down the hall after I had put her to bed. When she realized she was busted, she wailed, "I sorry, Mommy, I sorry! I just freak out!" Now MAMA was busted- I now know what words I need to leave out of my vocabulary!

Dentist   In preparation for her first trip to the dentist when she turns three, I brought Helen Grace along with me for my teeth cleaning appointment on Wednesday. Granddaddy came with us too, and he held her while they watched me. She was very timid at first and got a little upset at first when she heard the toothbrush noise start up. She was fine though when she realized it didn’t hurt me. The hygienist was really good with her as she counted and “tickled” my teeth. She called the suction thing, Mr. Thirsty, and that made Helen Grace laugh. I am still nervous about trying to put HG down in that chair, but at least she’s gotten to experience a dentist’s office.

Dance Parties   HG is really into having dance parties these days, and she’s insistent on them being done as a family. She calls the floor space behind our couch and next to our kitchen table her ‘stage,’ and she’ll grab my phone, turn on music, and start yelling, “Dance party! It’s a family!”

Finally   Helen Grace has finally crossed the 30 pound mark- yaaaaayyy!

couchFamily dinner at Taco Bell on Sunday…we learned that HG loves hot sauce, just like her daddy. She played with coins with Bubba, Granddaddy, and Daddy FOREVER. The girl’s imagination runs wild!taco bell- changeWe also discovered that she likes sushi. She usually eats all the cucumber out of my rolls, but she finally tried the crab and rice and really liked it.sushiChilling with Mama and catching up on her magazinesmagazine  Her daddy has created a monster. This is now how she wants to go grocery shopping. (Notice the ponytail too!!! Grandma talked her into it!)basket Morning cuddles with Mama before the day gets startedmorning cuddles The Coats ladies came over for lunch on Friday, and HG and AM ran around holding hands…or rather dragging each other around. It was really cute though!amc

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Jibber Jabber

Helen Grace is such a little grown up…

  • Mommy:  “What do you want to be when you grow up?”; HG:  “Real big tall like Mommy, like a dinosaur!”
  • “My hair’s almost as long as Punzel’s!”
  • “I try and I try and I try!” (to go to sleep)
  • “Mommy, those flowers need to go in the middle of the table. That’s where flowers go.” (She must have learned this from one of her grandmothers- not from me!)

On Friday afternoon, I gave up trying to get her to nap in her bed, and I let her sleep next to me in my bed while I blogged. At one point, she rolled over, said, “I love you, Mommy,” threw her arm across me, and went right back to sleep.nap snuggle Starting to wake upnap snuggle2

My parents recently came across this gem from 1985. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. At least HG won’t be plagued by memories of making the fashion statement of socks with Jellies!Roll36192-2 Jun1985

Happy Birthday, Camille!

On Saturday, we celebrated Camille’s third birthday. It still seems a little crazy that our FTM kiddos are getting so big, but it’s wonderful to think back on all the birthdays our FTM group has shared together. Happy 3rd birthday, Camille!

Camille’s drums were a big hit with all.CIMG0724 HG and the birthday girlCIMG0725 The best pic I could capture of Callum and HG- they were waaayyy to busy building to cheese for me.CIMG0726 I love how excited they get about singing Happy Birthday and blowing out candles now.CIMG0727 Camille surprised her mama with her blowing gusto!CIMG0728 I’m impressed that Caroline and HG were so sweet to sit back and watch Camille open gifts.CIMG0729Jenn told us about a great little furniture store in Arlington, and Doty and I couldn’t resist stopping by to browse. Our little ones had a BLAST trying out all the pieces. They went “crazy,” according to Helen Grace.silly girls1 Doty caught one of them being still- for a split second.silly girls2 “Take my picture, Mommy!”take my pic


One of HG’s new favorite activities is ‘fixing’ my hair. Makes me feel like I’m at a slumber party again. Thankfully, we went to dinner at an early bird time last night, and Casa Mexicana allowed for a lot of room to run around and climb on booths. hair do Joyriding with Daddy at Kroger on a Saturday nightcart

Friday, February 17, 2012

My Jumping Bean

Friday morning, Melissa and Lawson showed us the best kept secret in Southaven- BOUNCE! They have open jump time three days a week for less than $10/child, and we were the only people there for almost an hour. We haven’t been to a jumpy place in quite a while, and Helen Grace was ready to go from the moment she woke up this morning. Helen Grace and Lawson giggled and squealed the whole time, and HG wanted ‘Lissa’ to go on the slide with her too. The girl isn’t scared of anything and can scoot up those climbing walls and ladders in a split second, and then she throws herself down the tall slides. One ‘big kid’ inflatable even had a climbing wall that had a outward bulge in it that you have to almost hang off of to get over it, and HG just scaled right up it without slowing down. She obviously gets her daddy’s bull-headed courage because this mama thinks twice when it comes to a chance of bodily harm!  :)

Once the kids worked up an appetite, we headed to Newk’s to grab a bite to eat. The kiddos kept themselves entertained eating, so Melissa and I were able to enjoy a nice conversation. What a treat! Afterward, HG and I shared a cupcake at L’Oven and then headed home for a nap.

This has been one of those days that I’d like to put on ‘repeat’!

CIMG0706 CIMG0708 CIMG0710 Even the mommies had fun!CIMG0711 CIMG0712CIMG0714 Lawson’s making his move…he must like older women…CIMG0718A cupcake with my little cupcake cupcake

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Will You Be My Valentine?

We began and ended Valentine’s Day 2012 on really sweet, cuddly moments. This morning, after her morning cuddle and milk in our bed, she finally got curious enough about her gifts to dig in. She loved the Disney princess book that I recorded for her, and I loved watching her face as she realized it was Mommy’s voice! Spiffer and Granddaddy had a bag of treats waiting on her too, full of stickers, notepads, candy, and a BIG monkey. She was having so much fun that I had to bribe her with M&Ms just to get dressed and out the door to Grandma’s!

John and I met for lunch at Panera across the street from our offices, which was a nice treat in an otherwise hectic work day, and then we met our parents, Bubba, and HG at McAlister’s for a family dinner.

Helen Grace and John surprised me with beautiful flowers- how sweet! And HG even made me a Valentine (with Grandma’s help). Of all things, THAT was what I really wanted. I’ll treasure it always. We enjoyed dinner together, catching up and sharing chocolate candies, and HG had a ball handing out the Valentine cards and picture frames that she made for her grandparents.

We came home to cuddle on the couch before bedtime. My sweet little girl wrapped herself in my arms and legs and wouldn’t let go of me. I’m telling you, God made that child JUST FOR ME. Couldn’t ask for more.

“That’s Beauty (Belle)!”valentine am2 “That’s Mommy’s voice!”valentine am3 Opening Spiffer and Granddaddy’s treatsvalentine amP1010880 P1010881hugs for bubba hugs for spiffer valentine My cup runneth overvalentine cuddle