i know i know, it’s been forever. now that my ancient laptop is working again, i have a chance to post!
the latest news on claire is that she had her kidney surgery and it went extremely well! she has a nasty incision to show for it but hopefully the removal of the bad tissues will bring her more comfort. i imagine a big sausage of a ureter in that little body would feel yuck. i won’t go into the boring details of the hospital stay but let’s just say i LOATHE hospital stays more than anything. i would rather eat a bug.
anyway, her spasms have been pretty good lately. not too many and not too severe. she is having a repeat MRI on tuesday so please pray for that. we want to get a better picture of how her brain looks now since her head has not been growing at a normal rate and we still can’t figure out if these things are really seizures or not. i am a nervous wreck when it comes to the brain stuff so i need all your calming vibes, okay?
adrian is doing great. he’s working hard and taking good care of us vender girls. we’ve been going for family walks every night which we all love, especially lily- and it is helping me in my weight loss quest as well. we’re getting excited for easter this weekend and for the first preview of our friend brian’s new church, day|twelve. i’m sure you’ll hear much more about that from me in the future!
here’s some new pictures from a family lunch to the farm at south mountain.
have you seen all the yummy chicken and turkey sausages they have at the grocery stores now? so many different varieties like chicken/apple or italian herb. on my last shopping trip, i spied a package of habanero/green chile chicken sausage and it spurred this super easy, fresh dinner entree idea.
first, slice the sausage links as well as half a red onion, half a red bell pepper and one jalepeno. then sautee them in a large skillet with a little drizzle of canola oil. while they cook, boil of pot of salted water and add a package of whole wheat penne pasta. cook the pasta as directed, drain and toss with a can of green chile enchilada sauce (available in the mexican food aisle). in a large colander, drain and rinse a can of black beans, a can of corn and a can of diced tomatoes and mix together. i only used about half the bean/corn/tomato mix and added it to the sausage skillet and tossed everything together. then plate your dish! i put some of the green chile pasta in a bowl, spooned on some of the sausage/veggie mix and then topped it all with some chopped cilantro and a sprinkle of grated cheese. in all, it took less than 30 min to make and it was delicious!
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when i slow down and take it all in, it’s the everyday things that mean the most. like afternoon coffee runs with my favorite little person. she babbles and entertains me in the backseat. and i can’t help but smile at those polka dot tights.
i remembered that i promised to post more of my everyday loves, a promise i have seriously failed at. i have been so forgetful lately to photograph all the little things i create, discover or bake on a regular basis. i pinky swear that i am going to try so much harder to document and involve you in those things. deal? over the holidays, i made a huge effort to embrace my crafty side and make many things myself. one project i jumped into was taking a plain, unfinished wood tray from michaels and transforming it into a pretty place to display trinkets, eat breakfast or sort papers in your office. it is a very versatile and super easy DIY and i hope you like it!
buy an unfinished wood tray (michaels, about $4) and paint the sides inside and out with a craft paint.
cut scrapbooking papers to fit the bottom of the tray. i first laid a sold color in the bottom and ran my fingers along the corners to form a crease, then i just trimmed the paper along the crease to fit perfectly. rocket science, i know! then i added a patterned paper, did the same crease trimming method but then cut it into three sections so some of the solid paper would show through in stripes.
remove the paper from the bottom of the tray and coat it with a thin layer of mod-podge (available by the glues at any craft store) then carefully lay your paper back into the tray, you will get lumps, try to smooth them out as best you can but don’t freak, it only adds to the character of the tray.
then coat the top of the paper with 2 thin layers of mod-podge. wait for it to dry between coats. i then coated the entire painted sides of the tray in a layer of mod-podge too. it gives it a shiny, finished look and is easier to keep clean than a matte paint finish.
(so easy a cave man can do it! yes, adrian even did his own tray. quite beautifully. notice how he holds the brush like a drum stick? love.)
ta-da! instant pretty tray! (yes, i made the felt flower pin too. info coming on another post soon.)
i haven’t updated in forever. but with the holidays, a wedding and lots of family in town i had zero time! here’s a few things to let you all know (in case you didn’t already)
claire- she has learned to roll over! and hold her pacifier in her own mouth with her little hand and play a fun eye blink game and is off all seizure meds for the time being. she is still having spasms but not as many and they are milder. we are deciding what to try next. we just took her last week for a scan of her blocked ureter issue so please pray for those results as we should hear soon what the next step is. we are hoping that the blockage has miraculously cleared, that her kidney tissue is healthy and there is no need for an operation! we also recently found out she is allergic to melatonin after she had a severe case of the hives over her entire body for 5 days. that was an eye-opening experience. we were at the hospital 3 days in a row, it was exhausting and poor claire was miserable! she is all better now. unfortunately, the melatonin is out as a solution to her sleep/spasm correlation. as i said earlier, we’re still trying to determine what our next course will be with seizure treatment.
me- i went carb free for a week to kick start a diet and lost 8 pounds. for a long term solution, i am devoted to eating healthier and taking daily walks. i am hoping to lose about 50 lbs total by this summer.
adrian- he has accepted a full time salaried position with his contract job! it is a wonderful company and he couldn’t be happier. he is still doing some side projects but we have a lot more job security now and plus he is learning and growing so much in this role. i am so proud of his talent- he is self-taught, amazingly smart and tries harder than anyone i know. here is his company’s web site in case you were curious.
misc- the holidays were great. lots of family time, baking, tamale making and gift exchanging. we attended christmas eve services at my family’s church, cornerstone, and got to see our sister, alex, sing on stage. she has such a beautiful voice! then wedding madness ensued! my littlest brother, matt, married yasmine on january 2nd. yippee! the wedding was in his airplane hanger (so cool!) and it was a joy to be a part of. lots of family made the trip down from minnesota and it was so nice to spend a little time with them. here’s some photos from the last month and a half. i haven’t been very good about picture taking but here are a few to enjoy!
who doesn’t love Christmas decorations? i turn on the twinkle lights in the morning when the sun is still beginning to rise and they give me the warm fuzzies throughout my day at home with miss claire and lily. i love that the weather has been extra cold and somewhat cloudy for us desert people. it actually feels like the holidays. here’s my personal winter wonderland-
a little peek into claire’s world… she absolutely loves trying to sit on her own. i use her boppy pillow as a trainer and added support. but she is pulling herself forward and waving those arms around and most of all enjoying it! she is getting very good at it and i hope someday soon she will be steady all on her own. here’s some photos of her play time:
oh and please forgive the messy hair. claire is a chronic offender of bed head. detangler is her best friend.
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i’ve been slacking again. honestly i really haven’t felt like writing in some time and taking pictures hasn’t been a priority lately. sorry.
things have been up and down around our house. claire is still on the diet, still having seizures. don’t get me wrong, we have seen major improvements. there are many times she wakes up and doesn’t have them, but sometimes she still does and they can be pretty strong ones. she also has stopped tremoring periodically in her right arm and doing little “jolts” like she used to. she learned how to babble about 2 weeks ago and talks to us every day morning and night! she is also trying to sit on her own, she likes to try and i am very confident that someday she will get the hang of it. she has been super smiley especially in the mornings, which of course makes my day. overall, we are happy with the small changes we have seen and plan to stick to the diet. the doctor reccomended increasing her medicine to see if the combo of it with the idet will work better. so we increased in a few days ago and are hoping we see more improvements.
here’s something else claire has learned to do:
she likes to tell us when she is sleepy. so sweet.
and get ready here are LOTS of pics of just being cute. to catch you all up on the last month.
she likes making funny faces.
the following are pics adrian snapped of us having a girl talk.
she loves bath time.
until her paci falls out.
family pic at schnepf farms festival.
what a cute smirk!
my silly girl.
halloween night. she was a claire bear.
and wanted none of it.
she was not happy with us. and did not get to trick or treat. because she screamed instead. bummer.
at least one vender girl enjoyed her costume.
that’s it for now! congratulations on making it through this looong post! i’ll try to add the pictures to flickr soon so they link up and you can print them if you want!
seriously people. she is the best ever. do you read her blog? if you don’t then i am so mad at you right now. it is eye candy yumminess every day. her pictures make me smile, make me get teary, make me think, make me appreciate the beauty in this world. go! go right now and devour every post!
awhile ago, we received the final pictures that she took at claire’s first birthday party. i have been bugging adrian to help me embed them here but he is so busy, so instead you’ll just have to follow this link to see the slideshow. they’re amazing, huh? i can’t wait to get big prints and hang them all over my house (if you want any, there is a shopping cart icon on the bottom right). and i can’t wait to do a family session with misty in the future. especially now that claire is off the sleepy medicine and so much more awake.
hope you enjoy the pictures and misty’s blog!
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i found this beautiful shot of the world trade center twin towers on flickr today. eight years ago, i woke up to the news blasting though my normal top 40 radio alarm. confused as to why the news was playing, i turned on my tv only to see that tower one had been hit. i then watched as the second plane hit and the towers fell. at the time, i was a senior at ASU and called my parents, who were living in chicago, immediately. all i wanted to do was to go home, hug my mom and feel safe again. 2970 innocent people lost their lives during this unbelievable attack. and they were people just like me who started that day off as if it was any other normal day. i want to live every day i have to its fullest, embrace it all, be truly present- because i never know when it might be my last.
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