Saturday, July 20, 2013

The not so fun

I knew Monday morning it was going to be a rough week.  Everyone was off and I just had a feeling, but I didn't anticipate how rough it would be.  On Saturday we had taken away Elle's paci and put her in a big girl bed.  With anticipation of the worst and hopes for the best, I was pleasantly surprised.  Throughout the weekend she wasn't napping, but staying in her room and playing during her two hour allotted "rest time" and never once came out of bed at night or in the morning.  BUT, she had lack of sleep, which caused some extra TLC and patience as she worked through her day.

Also, Cole has been on a dairy free diet due to tummy issues and in addition to nursing I'm needing to supplement, so I was using a dairy free (aka very expensive) formula and was attempting to switch him to soy.  It didn't work well and he ended up with a very red little bottom.

Clare had no transitions and was going strong while the other two were out of sorts, until Tuesday morning when I noticed a little red bump (for the purpose of blogging, we will just say it was in a little girl area).  I took all three with me to the doctors (obviously not thinking clearly) to have it looked at where the doctor had me hold her down while she screamed as they "extracted" by squeezing a sample to send off to see if it was MRSA or some other type of staff infection.  I left with 3 screaming children, some cream, an antibiotic and hopes we were done....we were not.

By Thursday the bump was 4 times the size and Clare was in incredible pain.  I took her back to the doctors (I wised up and took her alone), where they proceeded to take another sample (a lot more screaming).  We both left tired.  I was supposed to be doing baths 2-3 times per day and by that afternoon it was bad.  We have incredible neighbors, as I mention weekly, and a neighbor came to watch Elle and Cole so I could take Clare to meet LD at the children's hospital.

(Side note: When we pulled into Levine's Children Hospital Clare said "This is Joey's hospital, we have not been here in a long time!  I can't wait to be here!"  Cue this tired mommy's tears)

It was decided that Clare needed to undergo surgery to remove the infection and have 2 drains put in until the infection was totally clear.  Poor Clare was SO hungry and did not eat from 3 til 11 pm.  She told anyone who would listen that she just wanted to eat.  We had an incredible team of nurses and doctors and not a tear was shed, not even when they put the IV in!!!  We were in our room by 12:30 where Clare had pizza and watched a movie.  Then the waterworks started when I turned off the tv at 2am.   We learned being with a child at the hospital is way worse than just being in the hospital, but we survived.

Time at home has been hard...Clare still needs a lot of assistance with having her two drains until Monday.  But we are THANKFUL for her bravery, her sweetness and God's protection over her.

I don't have a smart phone.  I know I am one of the 3 left in the US without one.  But, while I was at the hospital I didn't have any internet access.  When I got home and saw so much support, love and prayers from people, my heart was overwhelmed.  I had people constantly checking on me while we were at the hospital, people watching our children while we were gone, showing them great love.  The last two nights we have had friends bring us a meal.  Our neighbors and dear friends came and sat with us during the surgery at 10pm.  It is crazy to look at this type of situation as a blessing, and I do wish it had never happened to our sweet girl.  It is awful to watch your child in pain and it be out of your hands to help.

But I do know that even in the not so fun, even in the bumps in the road, God has a way of showing us His great love for us. 

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Michigan in the summer

The purpose of our trip to Michigan was to spend extra special time celebrating Vanessa and Evan's upcoming arrival of their little boy.  My mom, aunt, sister, and sister-in-law had planned a shower for all the Michigan family and friends.  LD could not come the entire week so my mom and Aunt Tina drove down, left their car and drove me and all the kiddos back.  That, is some SERIOUSLY sweet family!!
The shower was a success, Baby Hartsell is already very loved and got lots of great loot!

And of course Vanessa is glowing and rocking her pregnancy!  She looks awesome!

By Sunday night we were all exhausted from the weekend, and it was time for the vacation to  begin!  We had SO much fun hanging out at Grammie and Papas house.

This is how Elle spent the majority of her time.  She never actually swam, but spent a lot of time in the water - usually with clothes on.  And do you see she is wearing a SWEATSHIRT?!?!  It was so chilly - crazy!

My niece Kristyl came over with my great nephew Tyce to play one day and they brought this fairy costume for the girls.  Clare had it on the rest of the trip.  She loved it.

Uncle Evan, daddy and papa all took the girls for boat rides (notice Clare still has on her fairy crown).  Yes, it made mommy nervous a few times when they decided to stand up in the boat and it got to rocking, but it was sweet memories for sure.

They picked some cat tails on one of their boat rides and neither of them could ever remember what they were called - I think I heard dog ears, lion tails...and combination of an animal and body part did the trick.
And every summer vacation is only made complete with s'mores.  YUM!!

I really enjoyed (LOVED) having lots of extra sets of hands.  I feel like this ridiculously huge smile on my face is how I felt about this trip.  I rarely got dressed in real clothes, rarely did my hair, but spent lots of extra time hanging out with my babies. (Sidenote- I think I can only call them babies for a little while longer since Clare is almost FIVE!!)
On the fourth my parents invited all of our family (see below!) over for a cook-out, lawn games, and just good hang out time!

We always get a picture with whoever is there and even this time we are missing my sister and her entire family!

Daddy set off fireworks and I still cannot believe I let the girls stay up to watch.  I forget how late it gets dark in Michigan.  Elle's face is priceless watching her very first firework show.
We had a few really big ones!  Classic Clare, loving it but making sure her ears are plugged.
The last two days in Michigan we got to spend time with LD's family.

My kiddos are blessed with some pretty awesome cousins.

They had so much fun playing and being loved on - and trust me when we are in Michigan there is a lot of love to go around!!
The journey ended with a miserable 14 hr. drive home due to weather, traffic and a few extra stops (Cole decided to add some excitement with some ridiculous diapers).  But, we made it and I'm sure we will be all ready to do it again in November...but we need a few months to recover!~

Let's blog!

Oh my, I have been the worlds worst blogger.  The good news is that the reason I haven't been blogging religiously is because we have been LOVING summer!  I feel like with Clare having one year of pre-school under way this was our first real summer to enjoy.  I felt like we could all relax, stay in our pjs longer, watch a little more tv and just enjoy life.  It's funny how changing up routine gives you different perspective.  And I felt like I needed a good month of just chill time, knowing I survived January through May with Cole's arrival and getting Clare to and from school (sounds little, but it was hard work!).  Now, since its mid-July and I haven't posted since May....I'll just make this a catch up post on summer with the Jacksons!

The beginning of the summer we RELISHED in being home.  I don't think we left the town of Wesley Chapel for two was awesome!!
Sweet Elle has the best summer hair :)
With Cole being a little older he can now join in the fun outside.  And do you see those blue eyes?!?!
I started the summer saying I was NOT going to a pool alone with all three, but we have accomplished it.  I don't have many pictures because I was alone at the pool with 3 - HA. It is a lot of work, but it can be done.  The girls (esp Clare) is to the age where she wants her swim wings off and she is not a good swimmer yet.  So we have a rule they have to be on when I am by myself with everyone, but I do think swimming lessons will be in the near future.
And since we don't have a pool in our neighborhood, we have blown up a little pool a few times and everyone loves it!


And sometimes we get creative ;)
Clare did a week long dance camp that was called Princess Palooza (right up her alley!) at the dance studio at the end of our street.  We could even walk and pick her up afterwards.
We celebrated Fathers Day- doesn't LD look so relaxed enjoying breakfast in bed??
And LD's 31st birthday!!

We have had a full summer already!  Here is what is yet to come!
1.  A week long camp for BOTH girls at the school where Clare will go next year
2.  The arrival of my nephew in late August
3. And to top off a perfect summer - DISNEY in September (AHHHH!!!)