Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Branson Trip and more stuff

We just got back last weekend from our visit to Branson, Missouri. We went "just because" for a long weekend, and had alot of fun. We took the kids to an amusement park, Silver Dollar City, and to a show called Noah, the Musical. I wish I could show you all pics from Noah...that was so neat! There were no camera's allowed in the theatre so I don't have any pics except for this one of the kids standing outside the theatre:

We also went to a cool water and fire show the next night. DJ was really happy in this picture, by the way! "NO MORE PICTURES!!!"

Shortly before we went to Branson, we got a couple packages in the mail from Brad's mom with a bunch of stuff from Brad's childhood and college days. I wish I had a camera to get the expression on Brad's face when I pulled out his old Star Wars ship which was filled with all the little "guys" inside. He and Dylan had fun playing with it. Brad can't remember what he had for dinner last night, but he remembered all the names of each character, what movie they were from, if they were a good or bad guy, and what happened to them in the movie! Unbelievable!!!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Update #4: Weimaraner

Yeah!!!! I finally got the dog I have been wanting forever! She is adorable--her name is K.D. ("Katie") and she is a full-bred Weimaraner. We had to name her something original (and apparently, long) because that is how all the other names on her Pedigree are. So, we decided on Kori Delmira Garcia. Kori means "God's Peace" and Delmira means "Noble Protector". She is really a good puppy. We got her a little over a month ago and she is pretty much housebroken, walks without a leash (and doesn't run away!), and is overall a very laid back dog.
I started back for Fall semester around the same time the kids did. I got hired to do an externship position at the hospital that I will be working at after I graduate, so I will start that in a couple weeks probably. It's basically additional clinical experience that I will get a few bucks for. I need all the experience I can get before I am on my own as an RN so that I don't kill anyone!
Brad is applying for an Air National Guard position in Ft. Worth, TX that he hopes to get. It would just be the 'one weekend a month, 2 week a year' thing, but it's a better position that his reserve position that he is currently in here.
Now I think you are pretty much caught up on our lives...until next time!!!

Update #3: School Year Begins

Back to school--I totally love this time of year. We all know that my favorite season is Fall and I think that's why I love's when the kids go back to school and get out of the house!!! No more, "Mommy, I'm bored!", no more "Mommy, Dylan won't stop touching me!", and no more wet tracks through the house from running in the sprinkler. Actually, I love having the kids around all Summer--they still go to daycare since I still have classes, but we do get to spend alot more time together than usual.

We did tons of boating this Summer. Brad and I went to Grand Lake for a week long getaway which was very nice. The kids are like fish in Lake Arbuckle--they absolutely love the water. We got to camp with our friends several times as well. Then, finally, school started. Dylan and Taylor both go to the same school now--Taylor is in all day Kindergarten and Dylan is in 1/2 day Pre-Kindergarten. Taylor was really excited, but a little concerned that she wouldn't be able to do the work--as if she wasn't smart enough or anything. This was back in August mind you...the other day she came home (about a month later) and said,

"Mom, I was so frusterated in school today!"
"Because our teacher made us do worksheet, after worksheet, after worksheet!"
"Did you have problem's with them?"
"Then why were your frusterated?"
"Because I finished mine first every time, then I had to wait for everyone else...they take forever!"

Haha--guess she's not worried anymore!

Dylan was a little different (since it is his first time in "Big Boy School". The night before school started he was so worried that he didn't fall asleep until 11:30. He went to bed at 8:30 and tossed and turned. When I went to check on him this was our conversation,

"Dylan, what the matter?"
starting to cry, "I don't want to go to school!"
"Because I don't want to ride the bus to daycare after school! I don't know how!"
(he's never been on a bus before)
"Dylan, the teacher is going to help you get on the bus, and make sure you are OK"
"Of course! She won't let you get on the wrong bus, and you will recognize the bus driver because it will be Miss Misty from your daycare!"
"Miss Misty???"
"Oh boy! I can't wait to ride the bus!!!"

Haha! He was OK after that. The first two days went well, then he started with his attitude and the rest is history. He gets in trouble at least once a week for yelling or throwing a fit about something that doesn't meet his expectations. Same ol' same ol'.
Here's some pics from the first day...

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Update #2: Chiari Malformation

Sometimes I get a little scared when I have to take DJ to the doctor...whether it be for an illness or a regular check up with his specialists. It literally seems like every time we go for what we think is going to be an average check up, we find out something else that is wrong with really sucks.

I know, I know, life is not fair and I should quit whining.

DJ had an MRI this Summer for his headaches that he was having. It showed a new problem in his brain called a Chiari malformation. Without going into a ton of details, it is a problem where a portion of his brain (the cerebellum) is herniating through the opening in his skull that his spinal cord enters through. So, he had to go see his neuro surgeon, who ordered another MRI of his entire spine which showed the Chiari (again), but also showed a Syrinx. For those of you who don't have time to click the a nutshell, it is a collection of cerebrospinal fluid on his spinal cord resulting from the Chiari. His brain is getting pushed into his spinal cord...great.

So, the surgeon wants to take a wait-and-see approach right now and continue with annual MRI's of his brain and spinal cord. This can be corrected with surgery, but it involves cutting away a portion of his skull to allow for movement of the cerebellum and drainage of the syrinx. If it worsens and is not treated, it can lead to muscle weakness, abnormal vision, severe headaches, and permanent paralysis.


The neuro surgeon is almost positive that the shunts in Dylan's head (which artificially control the flow of fluid) caused this problem. I wonder sometimes how these parents do it that have kids with severe abnormalities like mental retardation or kids that have fatal cancer. I guess I have to think this way to make myself feel better and to keep in mind that my child is pretty lucky. It still makes me want to hurt that stupid babysitter.

Update #1 - DJ's Birthday

I am going to do a few separate updates for you guys since, once again, I have been neglecting this site! That way, you won't feel like you're reading on, and on, and on....

OK, so for this first one, we will go back to the end of June when my not-so-little guy turned 4. He had a pirate birthday party at the house and had a ton of fun. He was running around saying "Arrrrrgh, matey!!!" most of the day. He had a bunch of his friends there and got way too many gifts. In fact, he had so many to open that once he opened one, he would drop it, and rush to the next present without really even aknowledging it. It was pretty funny--he had a blast. We decorated mugs, played cannonball toss, and dug for buried treasure. Here's some pics...

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

How Many Stuffed Animals Does a Girl Need???

Taylor has become completely infatuated with stuffed animals. She has about 6 horses, 4 unicorns, a whale, a Dalmatian, and countless teddy bears of different sized and colors--all of which have a name and apparently feelings that get hurt very, very easily. Her new thing is to carry her "friends" with her everywhere. This actually is not such a new thing--she has been doing this for about a year and a half, but until recently, she only needed to carry one at a time. Just within the past couple weeks, she has started bringing these things everywhere! To the grocery store, church, daycare, the lake...everywhere! It wouldn't be so bad, except everywhere I turn, there is a stuffed my car, under her pillows, in Dylan's laundry hamper(???), etc, etc. You get the point. Anyway, for the last couple weeks, I have actually had to allot extra time when we go somewhere to allow her to round up all her precious friends, get them in the car, and manage to get her buckled in among of the sea of stuffed horses.

"Mommy, be careful of Sadie!"
"Oh, sorry" as I move a purple unicorn out of the way of the buckle.
"Oh, sorry, Sadie" (to the yellow bear)
"Mom (a little annoyed)...don't you remember who Sadie is???"
Me thinking, "Ummmm, nooooo. I can't keep all these damn things straight!"
Me saying, "Hmmm, well, I guess I forgot. Why don't you help me remember?"
"Duh, mom...she's the pink unicorn. Remember the one that I got when I was a baby?!?!"

Hmmm. My bad.

That was yesterday.

Today, I was running a little late. So, as I was trying to throw my lunch together, while brushing Dylan's teeth and buckling him up, pack up my computer, find the textbook that I fell asleep reading last night, and find my car keys and cell phone. So, when Taylor said for the third time, "Oh, Mommy, just a second, I forgot so-and-so" you can imagine how happy I was! So, on the way to daycare, I made a new family rule that only one animal could come along at a time.

You would have thought that I broke both of her ankles and made her run a mile. She wailed all the way to daycare. For a split second, I felt bad...until I opened the door to get her out and had to pick up the purple unicorn that fell out of the car. "See!!! I should not have to wade through stuffed animals to get you out of the car!" She just looked at me like I was the devil. She wouldn't give me a kiss goodbye either.

What a mean Mommy.

Dylan just sat in his seat and didn't say anything the whole way to daycare. It's like an unwritten rule between them that only one of them can throw a fit at a time--thank God!

There used to be a time that I said , "Stuffed animals are silly toys--kids don't even play with them." Not anymore. We can't seem to get enough in our house. Go figure.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

I know, I's been a long time! What can I say...I've had my head in my school books since my last post...literally...trying to learn this stuff through osmosis! (Or is it diffusion...whatever!)

However, I am happy to say that I have made it successfully through my first semester of nursing school! Round of applause please!!! 5 months down and 11 more to go, but who's counting? I ended up with a 3.82 GPA--stupid B in what should have been my "easy A" course! As Dylan would say, "Oooooohhh, Mommy said Stupiiiiid! I'm going to tell Daaaaaaddy!" Well, it was a stupid course and I'll say it again...stupid, stupid, stupid! Ahhh, that feels better.

I had to attend the graduation of the upper class on Friday evening and found out that we don't wear caps and gowns to the ceremony. Weird. It was just the ceremony for the nursing school, though, not the whole university so I wonder if we actually have to attend 2? For all this hard work (and the amount of money I am paying), they should pull me across the stage in a golden carriage...with me in a cap and gown!!! haha

Taylor is about to finish her first year of "Big Girl School" and is a little nervous about having to spend all day at daycare. Not that she doesn't do well there...she just really likes her teachers at school. She's also a little nervous already to start Kindergarten and get to know new teachers all over again. She is very much all about routines.

Dylan is even more all about routines. He has stated that he wants to be 3 "forever and ever!" because he doesn't want anything to change. He doesn't want to move up in his Sunday school room, he doesn't want to start Big Boy School, or anything else that may come with turning 4. He is feeling much better from his little hospital incident (for those of you who didn't know, DJ had to spend 5 days in the hospital a little while back due to a bacterial infection that they were having a little trouble diagnosing and treating). He has been successfully battling a cold and cough the past week and this morning he was coughing pretty good and I said, "Oh my goodness, are you OK?" He got this scared look on his face and said, "I'm fine, I'm fine...I don't need to go to the doctor!!!" I said, "OK, I wasn't going to take you to the doctor." He said, "Good because the doctor pokes me!" Apparently the hospital left a lasting impression this last time!

He is still getting in trouble at daycare, but not as much as before. He has kind-of figured out that it's not OK to hit...sort of...for the most part...when he feels like controlling himself. He had a note sent home the other day that expressed their displeasure after hearing the "F" word come out of his mouth. I can't imaging where he picked that one up...DADDY!!! Needless to say, Brad got an earful when he got home...DJ got an earful before he went to bed...and I haven't heard a complaint since. Not that I'm perfect...stupid, stupid, stupid! ;) Dylan will go for an MRI and his annual checkup with the neurologist the first week in June. We are still waiting to get him scheduled with the developmental specialist as his teacher has been dragging her feet getting her paperwork filled out. I would say that I would blog about all those results, but I will be back in school by then and may or may not have the time...I'll try!

Brad has decided that civilian employment is harder to get used to than he thought. Not that he hates it, but being active duty was much more comfortable for him. He also has 2 female bosses, which doesn't help matters any. He did, however, get contacted from a colonel at a reserve base in Ft. Worth who is hiring for traditional reservist spots, so he may take that opportunity to get in a reserve unit that he actually will get paid for. He is also getting very anxious to use the trailer and boat. We are going to get the boat out of winterization next weekend, then go camping for Memorial Day.

I think that is pretty much the extent of our lives. I know, it's not a lot of really super exciting stuff, but I kind of like it that way! School starts again on the 19th and clinicals start on the 22nd and will be twice per week. I will be on the Medical-Surgical floor where they say I will get to see a little bit of everything. Wish me luck!