Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Happy 16th Birthday, Kassidy!!!

Happy sweet 16 to my sweet baby girl! I'm not really sure how it's possible that we blinked and you are suddenly half way through high school and old enough to drive. Yet somehow, here we are.

We are so proud of the young woman you have become, Kassidy. You are confident, smart, and have an amazing plan set for your future. You love your friends with a passion and hold them close. You're not afraid to be who you are, even if others tease you for it. We are so excited to see what the future brings you and walk next to you step by step...

As you go through these next years, never forget to rely on the Lord to help you make the tough decisions in life... and they will come... He will never lead you astray. And even if dad and I aren't right next to you, we are only a phone call away. We love you so much!

Happy Birthday!

Love, Mom

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Happy 14th Birthday, Kameron!!!

Happy birthday, Kameron! Another year has come and gone and you are another year older and another year... uh... funnier. And yes, another year wiser too! It's so hard to believe you are in your last year of middle school. It seems like you are racing towards the finish line so fast these days. You are growing into such an awesome young man. You have learned to make a name for yourself everywhere you go... even if that name IS Bacon... and everyone who meets you can't help but remember you with a smile.

I hope you have a great year, my son. Take the time to  really enjoy your time before high school and continue to make the most of every day! The years will continue to fly by faster and faster as you get older. Slow down and always remember who you are... an awesome son, an amazing brother, a goofy kid deep down inside... Never lose your sense of humor, your quirky look on life, and especially your love of... bacon.

We love you so very, very much!
Happy Birthday!


Saturday, May 16, 2015

Happy 11th Birthday, Kennedy!

My beautiful Kennedy, today when you wake up, I can finally answer your daily question with a very excited YES! You've been asking me every morning for over 2 weeks, "Is it my birthday, now?!" Now. Today you turn 11! You've been "way close" for so long and I know you have been so anxious for this day!

This has been such a fun year for you, my girl! I have loved watching you grow physically, mentally and emotionally. I love seeing your sense of humor grow all the time and I love seeing you laugh with your friends and siblings. I'm so proud of you for finishing another year of dance (almost) and watching your growth as a dancer. You really shined on stage this year, and your hard work has paid off!

Yesterday, when we celebrated your birthday with your class, I loved standing back and listening to your classmates tell you what a good friend you are, how they love that you're always happy, that you're a great dancer and of course, that they love your sense of style. ;) You are surrounded by a great group of friends who know how special and amazing you are. Never let go of those friendships!

I can't wait until you wake up so we can spend the day together, and tonight we will be off to your birthday dinner at Olive Garden!

Happy Birthday my princess!

I love you to the moon and back!


Friday, May 1, 2015

Happy 8th Birthday, Keeghan!!!

Dear Keeghan, you made it!! Today is your 8th birthday!! I can't believe another year has gone by so quickly. This has been a really challenging year for you, my son. In some ways it's been amazing, and in other ways it's been rough. I have loved watching you continue to grow and learn about everything around you... even if that means you ask me 5 million questions every day! I have loved watching you get stronger as you continue your karate classes, and take pride as you move up each belt. I have loved watching your sense of humor develop... similarly to your brother's, but with your own spin on things... I love hearing you laugh with your siblings and create new and amazing things every day.

It's been hard to watch you struggle this year  though too, as you find your way in this world and figure out what's important in life. I know some days are hard for you and I wish I could take that from you; but I also know that you are on the right path, and soon enough, with the Lord's help, you will be back on track and continue being the awesome kid that you are!

We love you so much, Keeghan! You are the perfect "baby" of our family, though you're not really a baby anymore... You are a wonderful, fun brother, a great friend, and a fabulous son. I'm so glad that God chose me to be your mom. I hope you have a wonderful birthday and I'm so glad you don't have school so we can spend it together! Ice cream for lunch, to the movies to see the new Avenger's Movie and then off to Red Robin for your annual birthday dinner... I can't wait!!

Happy Birthday, little man! I love you to the moon and back!


Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Happy 15th Birthday, Kassidy!!!

Happy Birthday, my beautiful daughter!! Here you are, another year older and wiser. This has been such a great year for you... full of new experiences and adventures. I have loved watching you grow and try new things. I have loved watching you thrive in high school socially and academically and watching your love for horses grow as you learn to be a great rider.

I am watching you develop into a beautiful young lady and couldn't be more proud of you! I can't wait to see what these next few years bring for you, Kass. I hope that high school continues to be a place filled with fun memories, great friends (and great grades too!). :)

Thanks for always being a great big sister, a great companion to watch movies with (even if you don't cry during the sad parts with me! haha) and a fun friend to sneak out with for coffee. I am so enjoying these years with you and am a little sad that they're speeding by so fast.

Never forget that no matter what, we are always here for you, my girl. In good times and in bad. We want to share every moment of this growing up journey with you. Happy 15th birthday my girl! I hope you have a great party this weekend and a fabulous 15th year!

I love you so very much!!


Monday, November 3, 2014

Happy 13th Birthday, Kameron!!!

Happy 13th Birthday, Kameron!! I can't believe you are a teenager!! We are about to start a fun and crazy ride through the teenage years, but at least I know that with you, it will never be boring!! I look forward to many years full of laughs, fun times, many creations and stories and well... lots of Bacon!! ;)

I love the young man you are becoming, Kameron. You are smart and responsible, you are hard-working and a great brother (even if you do drive Keeghan crazy sometimes!). I enjoy spending time with you and hearing your thoughts about the world and about life. I can't wait to watch you continue to grow and see the amazing man you become.

I know that the teen years can be tough at times Kam, but always remember that we are here for you whenever you need us. With your amazing sense of humor and the Lord by your side, I know you will make it through.

I know you already had your party, complete with bacon cake, but I hope you have a wonderful birthday! We will have your birthday dinner soon!!

I love you so much,

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Post-Op Update!

We are home and Kennedy is doing pretty well! She hasn't complained about her throat at all which is amazing! I had heard from a few parents that the lingual tonsil recovery was worse than the regular tonsils but that part has seemed to be super easy. I have her eating soft foods just in case - we don't want to agitate anything in there - but so far, so good. Her oxygen levels improved already during her night in the hospital so they are hopeful that this WILL help her apnea. I need to keep her on her oxygen at home until she can have her follow up sleep study in about 3 months. They want to make sure she's fully healed before they schedule it so they get accurate results.

Her ear has been another story. I didn't realize how extensive the work was going to be. They went in from behind her ear to fix it. They found that the hole was much bigger than they expected and had to patch about 70% of her eardrum so they're hoping it will take. We won't know if it was successful until her next hearing test in a few weeks. She has been in a lot of pain with her ear... the first night they had a huge bandage on it and that was really uncomfortable for her. It was a long night. Once they removed that, it was SO much better but she's still in pain with it and lets me know about every 15 minutes that her ear hurts. :( She's on around the clock pain meds still at this point but it's not really doing any good that I can tell. Hopefully time will help heal.

Here are a few pictures from the hospital...

In Pre-op waiting to go back... 

Post-op in a room, trying to eat. She HATED that thing on her ear. 

Friday morning - bandage off!! SO much better!

She still has small steri-strips behind her ear. One more battle scar. *sigh* 

Thanks for all the prayers!! The other kids were great and had fun with friends while I was gone. So thankful  they were able to step in and hang out with them. Now onto full recovery.... I'll post again when we get test results!!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Surgery Tomorrow

Kennedy's 31st surgery is tomorrow morning... They will be removing her lingual tonsils to hopefully help her severe sleep apnea, patching up her left ear drum to hopefully repair her hearing loss in that ear and doing a scope of her lungs to check for abnormalities. She will definitely be in the hospital overnight. When she had her regular tonsils removed she was in the hospital for 6 days so I'm praying for the best and preparing for... Not the best.

Please pray for everything to go well. This is the first time she will be intubated since her spine fusion surgery and that brings a certain amount of risk with it. The anesthesia department took a long time going over her records and are prepared for different types of intubation if necessary but it's still something we can be praying for tomorrow. Please be praying for her recovery. It was really rough last time and I've heard different views about the ease of this surgery. Please pray her blood sugar stays under control tomorrow and during recovery. She didn't have hypoglycemia issues when her other tonsils were removed so this brings a whole different level to the importance of her drinking after she wakes up.

Please pray the other kids are good while I'm gone! Keeghan likes to test his limits when I leave and with Frank out of town too (he's in Florida doing training), he may really push. Kennedy's doctor was insistent about the urgency of getting this done and so... We will get it done. I am thankful for friends who have offered to help with the other kids and friends who have listened to me panic (just a little) about tomorrow. It will be ok.  

I will update on Facebook and then here as well when I can.  

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Big Kennedy Medical Update

Hello friends!! :) 

I was writing this REALLY long Facebook status when I decided it was sounding more like a blog post so I decided I would just update here! First a brief catch up for those of you who aren't my Facebook friends. If you just want to catch up on today's update, go down to the bold writing at the bottom. ;) 

In January, Kennedy went to the Down syndrome clinic in Denver for her annual check up. I mentioned then that she has been having headaches occasionally that were bothering her at school. We had had her eyes checked and knew that wasn't the issue so they suggested a sleep study. In April she had that done and I noticed they hooked her up to oxygen in the middle of the night. While we were driving home from that appointment the next morning, the doctor from the sleep clinic called me and told me that Kennedy's oxygen levels were dropping down into the 70's while she was sleeping and that she had severe sleep apnea. With levels that low she could potentially have heart issues among other things. Thankfully she had her annual oncology check up scheduled in May and with that always comes an echocardiogram so we found out a couple weeks later that her heart (and her blood) are in excellent condition still. The doctor from the sleep clinic got us hooked up to a medical supply company and started Kennedy on night time oxygen that night. It was quite a process finding a device that would stay on her all night but we finally got something rigged so it stays on her (most of the time). 

At her sleep study

With her nasal canula which NEVER stayed in

With her mask rigged through a hat... if nothing else, we're creative! haha

In the meantime we've had a lot more appointments with ENT and pulmonology to try to figure out where to go from here. The common consensus is that her apnea is SEVERE and pulmonology suggested C-pap in addition to oxygen while ENT didn't think that would be enough and wanted to take out her lingual tonsils Kennedy had her facial tonsils taken out in August 2006 (who knew we had more than one set?!) and her ENT promised this would be an easier surgery. I sure hope so because that one was rough! Ugh! He pointed out that she also still has a hole in her ear drum that needs to be repaired and that he could do that at the same time. The good part about repairing the hole in her ear drum is of course, it will most likely fix her hearing loss in that ear. The good part about removing her lingual tonsils is that it will remove the need for c-pap and hopefully make her apnea a little better though it will probably NOT take away the need for oxygen. They may also do a scope while she is asleep to make sure there are no structural abnormalities with her esophagus that need to be addressed. 

As always with Kennedy, there are some concerns. This will be her first surgery where she will have to be intubated since her spine fusion surgery and since the back of her neck looks like this:

 They want to be really careful how they intubate her and what they use so they don't have to manipulate her neck too much. They also have to take her hypoglycemia into consideration and since she is now a "big kid" she will be slotted for a later surgery time so they are putting a plan in place to keep her blood sugar up since she will have to be NPO longer than she usually can go without food. She also still needs to be cleared by endocrinology for her thyroid because her last panel came back whacky (that's a technical term - "whacky"). I can't remember what number was off but they couldn't get her in until the end of July so ENT is going to try to get a consult with them tomorrow and get her either cleared or seen so she can be scheduled and healed before school starts. They are hoping to get this surgery done mid-July. Whew! Lord willing, she will only spend one night in the hospital and be right back home... of course they said that with her other tonsils too. *ahem* As soon as I have a surgery date, I will post again and I will try to do a post with pictures and stuff too. We've been having lots of lazy days and fun this summer! :)

Friday, May 16, 2014

Happy 10th Birthday, Kennedy!!!

It's here! It's here! Today is the big day, Kennedy! You are FINALLY 10! For months now you have been saying, "I'm really, really close to being 10." And as the days and weeks went by I watched you grow more and more excited as you planned your birthday party, talked about getting your military ID, and dreamed of being older and taller.

I have loved watching you grow this year, Kennedy, you have continued to surprise me and make me smile at every turn. I have loved watching you thrive at school, making new friends, soaring with your reading, and keeping everyone laughing constantly. I have loved watching you at dance, growing stronger physically and working so very hard at the thing you love more than just about anything else. I love watching your face light up when you know you're about to go on stage and perform... I hope you never lose that sparkle.

I know you are excited for this day because it means that you're older (and definitely wiser!), but don't grow up too fast, sweet girl. It's still okay to be little sometimes. It's still okay to play with your dolls sometimes, to play dress up sometimes, to color in your coloring books sometimes and to cuddle with your mom ALL the time! Remember that no matter how big you get, you'll always be my munchkin!

Happy Birthday my princess!

I love you a million, billion, trillion!