Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Memories to Last a Lifetime

 Aunt Gretchen and Uncle Jeff were so nice to offer to host the funnest family night ever!
 Gretchen made enchiladas for the ENTIRE family.  They were so yummy!  I've never had enchiladas like them before.  They were a build-your-own enchilada.  First you put a warm corn tortilla on your plate, then some homemade meat enchilada sauce, then cheese and another tortilla.  You can double stack the base, or continue with the toppings: lettuce, onions, sour cream, cheese...etc.  YUM!
 Then we went outside and Uncle Marc and Aunt Michelle have a tradition of renting a cotton candy machine every Halloween...they brought it to share.  
 As you can guess, it was a big hit!!!
 Even Uncle Mike couldn't help stealing some from little mabel...busted Mike!
 Maybe if I keep posting these crazy pictures of Mark, he will stop making that face every time I pull out the camera!!:)
 The too-cool-for-school teenager table.
 Kas and Lauren enjoying the goods!

 The kids played volleyball in the front yard...

 Aunt Jen had a collection going of all the kids' cotton candy they couldn't finish.

 Oh wait, just kidding, they need more.
 Great Grandma Alice joined in the festivities.  She is amazing at age 
 Wyatt needed a nap...can you tell!?

 Ok, this picture just needed to be saved in the record books!  I took the picture, put the camera down, and caught the ball that Mark just threw at me!  Pretty impressive, if I do say so myself!

 After all the playing, we had everyone gather in their bonus room and had family home evening.  
 Grant told a few stories of his father, and then all the kids tried to fill out a 4 generation family tree.
 I have such good memories of gathering together with all my aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandparents on the Gilbert side.  
 We would eat the best food, play, and then gather for Grandpa Jack to give us words of wisdom.
 I teared up a little as we were all sitting there in Jeff and Gretchen's with Grant talking.  I am so grateful to be a part of such an amazing family.  I am so grateful that my kids have these examples around them, and they are gaining these relationships that will stay with them in this life and the next. 
 I am so grateful to live closer so that we can be a part of these priceless family experiences!
Thanks Jeff and Gretchen for hosting!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Fun at the Park

We met Lynndsey at the park to play for the morning.
I gave Kasidee the camera,
and this is what she got...Cute Natalie...
Maryn, who is getting so stinking tall I can hardly believe it!
Preston and Parker having some boy bonding time...
Little Wyatt
Some more little Wyatt
...and sweet Rachel.
We couldn't get enough of our new niece/cousin!
Love family!

Temple Open House

 Michelle, Mike and Jen, and I took the kids to the Phoenix Temple open house.  It was so beautiful.  
 There were a lot of long lines to wait in, and the kids were pretty tired by the time we actually got into the temple, but I am so glad we went.  Hopefully they will be able to remember something that they felt or saw as they remember back.
 All the cousins.
 All the cousins again.
 The long lines...
 More long lines...
It wasn't an overwhelming, spiritual, perfect teaching experience for my kids.  They were tired, and didn't love it, to be honest.  But I think later, they will look back and remember how beautiful it was.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Scary week

 On Monday, I noticed Wyatt had a pretty bad bruise on his forehead.  I showed Mark, and told him I didn't remember him bonking his head that hard, or crying at all about it.  It was a little strange.  I dismissed it because he is an active one year old still learning to be steady on his feet.
 Mark flew out for work Monday night, and then the next morning, as I was getting him dressed for the day I started finding all these crazy bruises.
 The pictures don't do them justice.  They were mean looking bruises, in strange places-like the crook of his elbow.
 I called the pediatrician, and they said to bring him right in.  The first thoughts running through my head were leukemia.  Mark's dad had leukemia, so I knew it was in the family...is that genetic???  I had no idea.  By the time I got to the doctor I had talked myself down, and figured I was over-reacting.  But then the doctor took blood tests and told me they were going to rush the results and call me as soon as they had them.  They would send me to the ER or the blood specialist THAT DAY.  Ok, now I'm freaking out.
The doctor wrote this on the paper they cover the exam table with.  She said, she thought it was ITP, but couldn't be sure without the blood results.
 She sent us home, I laid Wyatt down for a nap and started calling people.  I needed to figure out childcare for the different scenarios.  I received a call from the doctors office and they told me it did look to be ITP, and the blood specialist had been called and was expecting me.  Deep breaths!
 My friend and cousin were so amazing.  They rearranged things to be able to man my other kids until my mom and dad could get here from St. George.
I got Wyatt and headed to the specialist.  He told me all the information and scary stats, that they are obligated to tell you...and then they admitted us into the children's hospital across the street.  He needed platelets, specifically IVIG.  They want your platelet count to be 150-400, Wyatt was at 4.  He was at a very high risk for internal bleeding.  And how exactly are you suppose to keep a very active one year old from getting bumped and bonked?!?!?
 For example, his favorite spot in the hospital room was under the bed! :)
 Amazing men from our ward organized for Wyatt to be able to get a blessing, and he was a champ through the whole thing.  His veins were really hard to find, and when they did get an IV started it would go bad.  He had to get stuck way more than a little munchkin should have to.
The whole process was long and rough, but we made it through and finally got the ok to head home.
 We had been in the hospital for 2 days, it was 10 at night, I finally got Wyatt buckled in the car to go home and put him in his own bed and he started throwing up, and throwing up, and throwing up.  I'll admit it.  At this point, I completely lost it.  I called my mom sobbing and didn't know what to do.  Every part of me didn't want to walk back into that hospital...I just wanted to take my baby home!  
I put the car back in Park, and loaded a baby covered in vomit into the stroller, and headed back into the ER.  The attendant couldn't understand me because I couldn't pull myself together and talk without crying.  I wanted to tell them all, "I'm normally able to handle a lot, I promise!  I don't normally have melt downs!"  They kept giving me that look, the "oh great, a basket-case, first time mom" look.  Whatever!
They contacted the doctors upstairs, gave Wyatt an anti-nausea tablet, and an hour and a half later, sent us back out to our car. I guess it was just a side-effect of the IVIG treatment.

We have so blessed with healthy strong children.  I am so grateful that I don't have to live in a hospital like so many of those children I saw do! I pray for strength for those moms!