Wednesday, March 6, 2013

New House

We moved into our new (rental) house last week!  It is more than twice the size of our old house and we are loving all the space.  The house is on a 1/2 acre and the backyard is huge!  Here are a few pictures.  I will take more once we are all unpacked and set up.

Front of the house

Dining Room

Living Room


Garage/Workshop in the backyard

View of the back of the house from about the middle of the backyard

The Backyard
It needs a lot of work, but has a lot of potential.  It has pecan trees, fruit trees, grape vines, and all sorts of different bushes, trees, and plants.  

Monday, March 4, 2013

Tyler the Clown

Last week Tyler discovered the clown pajamas that all of my kids have worn and has instantly become a full-fledged clown.  He was very disappointed that there wasn't a hat and red nose to go with them.  Soon after the clown pajamas resurfaced, Tyler's new imaginary friend "Clowny" started making daily visits to our house.  He talks in a horribly scary voice and is always jumping out to hug everyone.  Clowny and Tyler also put on circus shows everyday.  Clowny juggles and rides his "bicycle with one wheel" all around the house.  Tyler also juggles with invisible juggling balls.  He's quite good at it :) 

Tyler juggling

I love the age he's at.  Three-year-olds are so much fun.  He is getting so smart and even a little sneaky.  Today, he had all ready had 4 yogurts and was trying to get another one out of the fridge.  I told him that he couldn't have another one and he instantly devised a plan.  He handed the yogurt to Kenz and said "This yogurt is for you Kenz."  And she said "No thanks, I'm not hungry."  To which he replied, "Okay. Now say, Tyler, do you want this yogurt?"  And of course he got the yogurt.  How could I deny him when he worked so hard to get it?  I just love that boy to pieces and I don't know what we'd do without him.

 Ty making his "bad guy" face

Friday, November 23, 2012

Blah.....I Guess it's Time for an Update

I am just not feeling the whole "blog" thing lately.....or for the past year.  I was busy with the holidays last year and then I got sick in January and the whole year kind of escaped me.  I can't believe that it is almost December.  I feel like I missed most of 2012.  My health is definitely on the upswing and I feel pretty good most days.  I still have a few swollen lymph nodes that are sore and I still get tired really easily, but otherwise, I think I am almost 100% better.  

Who knew a cat could ruin a whole year of my life?  A cat?!  Pets and I? We don't get along anymore.  And I have become a complete, crazy germaphobe.  I wash my hands like a crazy lady and I disinfect the house with Lysol just about everyday.  And I stay as far away from cats as possible.  And most other animals and ticks and bugs and mold and dust and dirt.  There is a lot of scary stuff out there!  I learned WAY too much about all the crazy diseases that are out there because it took them so long to diagnose me.  Every other week they told me they suspected some new, crazy disease that I had never heard of, so naturally I researched them all and now ALL germs kind of freak me out.  Tularemia, Brucellosis, Coccidiomycosis, Toxoplasmosis, Tuberculosis (tested 6 different times for that one,) HIV, Lymphoma, Castles Disease, Sarcoidosis, Q fever, and Lupus, are just a few of the things that they tested me for that I can think of off the top of my head.  Plus all the blood cultures ( I know had at least 12 of them drawn, so 24) and all the other blood work.  I also had two surgeries, an FNA biopsy, CT scans, ultrasounds, hospital stays, pneumonia, heart tests, xrays.  It infected my lymph nodes, spleen, liver, lungs, and eyes.  It was seriously crazy.  I am so glad that it is all behind me now (hopefully) and I can start to get on with my life.  Unfortunately, there are many people with Bartonella, who are chronically sick for years.  Crossing my fingers that I'm not one of them.   

And all though this year has been a really crappy one, I am SO grateful that it wasn't cancer.  Having lymphoma hanging over my head for over a month was rough.  Especially with four kids and a husband at home who still need me.  I had several doctors 100% convinced that I had Lymphoma (including my Oncologist) and they were prepping me to start chemo.  Thank goodness they waited to do anything until my first biopsy came back.

When I slowly started doing things again, like cooking dinner, Caden would dance around and clap in the kitchen and say things like "Mom's back to normal.  Everything is normal again.  Yes!"  It has been so nice to be able to take care of my house and family again.  I hope and pray that I am never, ever sick like that again.  

So, that in a nutshell, is mainly why I haven't been blogging.  I am going to try really hard to keep up better now, but no promises.  Facebook makes it really easy to neglect my blog, since I am always posting pictures and different things on there and keeping in touch with everyone on there. 

My next post will be full of happiness and pictures ;)  Maybe.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Tyler at Two

Our cute Tyler turned two on October 5th. We spent the morning at the beach and then had a little party for him. He loved blowing out his candles and eating cake. I thought I should take a few minutes and write about Tyler at age two. He is quite a handful, but we sure love him!

He is full of energy and loves to run back and forth across the living room.

He loves Woody and horses and cowboy boots and cowboy hats and just cowboy stuff in general.

He also loves dinosaurs and trains. So basically, he is of the male gender.

He is finally starting to talk. He is saying quite a few words and even putting a couple of words together. He is still hard to understand, but is making great progress.

He LOVES to color. On everything. Paper, walls, the floor, himself, other people, etc. You name it, he colors on it.

He is a hitter. And a biter and a puncher and a kicker and so on. You get the gist. He's a little aggressive.

He also likes to throw things.

He prefers to be in the nude. Clothes are just not his thing.

He still loves to cuddle. We cuddle at least an hour everyday. For some reason he loves my arms, so while we cuddle, he rubs my arms.

He is very strong. Like He-man style. It's almost a little scary.

He still has some pretty serious food aversions. He hardly eats, but you can't tell from his size. At his check-up this week, he weighed in at 32.5lbs and is 36.5 inches tall.

On the topic of food, he likes to spit food all over the house. His favorite place is the living room rug. We get all excited that he's eaten something and then we later find 10 little piles of spit out food in random places around the house. I have cleaned up at least 30 of these little piles just today.

He loves to play outside. That boy would live outside if we let him. It doesn't matter if it's freezing cold and he's in just a diaper, he still wants to be out there.

He cries a lot. Usually 3-4 hours a day. We sure wish we could figure out how to help him feel a little better.

He has recently started to apologize to objects. For example, the other day the fridge bonked him in the head as it was closing and instead of crying and hitting the fridge, he patted it and said "Sawy fidge, sawy."

When he gets really angry, he meows as loud as he can, over and over again.

He has been sleeping in a toddler bed for a couple of months now, but he still much prefers our bed.

We think he might be half caveman/half viking.

He still loves his "minnie" (binky) and must have it all the time. It helps him to bite less, so we just let him.

He loves to throw rocks. Loves it. It could occupy him for a whole afternoon.

If you call him anything but Tyler or TyTy, he pats his chest and says "I TyTy."

To sum Tyler up, he is a crazy, rambunctious, determined, and stubborn toddler. But he is also very loving and sweet and we can't imagine life without him.

We love you TyTy!

Here are a few party pictures :)

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Beach (well, sort of)

They have a cute little beach here in Carlsbad. It's a little section of the river that they have turned into a beach area. It is actually a lot of fun and we love spending time there. We need to go a couple more times before the weather starts to turn cold. Here are pics from our most recent visit.

Kenz and Ty

Kenz and Caden

The little fishy

The boys


Super Kenz!

Trying to get the little fish out of the water.

On our most recent visit, I fell down a some stairs and sprained my foot and ended up in a big, clunky boot for a few weeks. It was no fun. I will definitely be watching my step better next time!

Friday, September 2, 2011

Caden's Story, part 1

I decided that I should write down Caden's story. Not only for myself, but in hopes that it might help others to understand him better and maybe help people who are going through the same thing.

In April of 2005, Erick and I decided that we wanted to add to our family. Erick was working in New Mexico and the girls and I were living in Utah. In preparation for the pregnancy, I quit smoking and went to my doctor and switched anti-depressants, to one that was safe for pregnancy (I started taking Prozac.) We had to wait to try because Erick's parent's were taking all of us on a cruise in Feb 2006 and you couldn't be more than 26 weeks along. We started trying to conceive in September 2005 and after 8 negative pregnancy tests, we were sure that it was not our month. But after crying over a song on the radio one Sunday, I went and bought test number 9 and it was positive! We were having a baby!

My pregnancy was fairly normal. I had morning sickness and cravings and was hormonal and grumpy. We had a gender ultrasound done at 16 weeks while Erick was in town and found out that we were having a boy! I was excited, but nervous because I wasn't sure that I would know how to take care of a boy after having two girls. I got over my nervousness pretty quickly and we started buying everything blue and talking about baby names. I started feeling baby boy kick at about 14 weeks and it never stopped. He was SO active. I know lots of mom's say that, but his movement was literally non-stop. I had no idea that a little person could move so much and for so long and sleep so little. I don't think anyone really believed how much he moved and how little he slept until he was born. When I was about 16 weeks, I turned on the blender and his whole body jumped and I remember thinking, well we know he can hear, not realizing that he was hypersensitive to sound, even in the womb.

At my routine 20 week ultrasound, they saw some concerns with his stomach and so I had to have a couple of follow-up ultrasounds to make sure that everything was okay. They didn't see any fluid in his stomach and I had excess fluid, so they were concerned that his esophagus might not be connected to his stomach, but after several scans, they decided that all was well.

35 weeks

Fast forward to 38 weeks and I developed PUPPS rash (pregnancy induced rash that can cause liver problems.) The rash got worse and worse, so they induced me at 39 weeks and 3 days. June 13, 2006, we arrived at the hospital at 6am to get the show on the road. They got me set up on the pitocin and then later came in to try and put an epidural in. It took them 28 tries to get it in. It was painful and miserable and the next day, my back pain from all the needle pokes was actually worse than my recovery from childbirth. During one of the tries, the medicine was put into a vein in my spine and went into my bloodstream, so I was really out of it for the rest of my labor and delivery. My midwife came in at some point and broke my water. After she broke it, she thought that he had a prolapsed cord, but discovered that he just had his hand up by his head....silly boy.

After hours of labor and a short amount of pushing, Caden Brock Sullivan was born at 5:37 pm and weighed 8lbs 2oz and was 21 inches. He had the cord wrapped tightly around his neck at birth, but seemed okay. He was born with blonde hair with just a hint of red to it and blue eyes. He nursed right away and was a sweet baby. After his birth, we were all taken to the recovery room where Caden would still not stop moving, even after just being birthed. It was almost like he couldn't get comfortable. He wiggled so much that he rolled over when he was less then a day old. It was crazy. I remember my mom coming to visit us at the hospital and commenting that it wasn't even fun to hold him like it is to hold other newborns because he would not stop moving. He just wiggled and squirmed constantly. Little did I know that his constant movement was the first of many signs of Sensory Processing Disorder that I would miss. After two days in the hospital, we went home to start our new life as a family of five.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Kittens

We debated for a long time about whether or not to bring Milo and Otis with us to NM and after much thought, we decided against it. Otis is too much of a wanderer and Milo is not very good with kids. So we decided to get a couple of kittens, in hopes that it might be therapeutic for Caden. So when we got back to Carlsbad from our summer trip to Utah, we went to our local animal shelter and picked out the only two girl kittens that they had there.

Meet General Grievous (Caden's kitten)

And the family kitten, Mrs. Norris

Everything was going great and the kittens were fitting in nicely with the family. Then we noticed that Grievous was getting sick about a week after we got her. This was on a Friday. By Sunday, she was worse, so we decided that we'd take her to the vet in the morning. But unfortunately, she passed away in the night and we never made it to the vet. We have no idea what killed her, just some random kitty virus. It was heartbreaking to tell Caden. They were best buddies. She slept in his bed every night. We buried her in the backyard and had a little funeral for her. It was the saddest little funeral that I have ever been too :(

We took our other kitty, Mrs, Norris, into the vet to get her checked out. They put her on antibiotics just as a precaution. She has done great since then. After a couple of weeks, we got the go ahead from the vet to get another kitten. Cierra's teacher from last year had a litter of kittens that she was giving away, so we went and picked out a cute little girl kitty that Caden named Luna Lovegood.

Well, I discovered this week that Luna Lovegood is not a girl kitty at all. She is a boy! We all double checked when we picked her out and we were all positive that it was a girl kitty, but he is most definitely a he. Caden has now changed Luna's name to Cedric (yes, another Harry Potter name.) The kitties are keeping us busy, but they have been a very good addition to our home. Tyler loves to carry them around and I can usually find one or both of them asleep in Cierra or Caden's bed at night.

All in all, it has been a good experience and I'm glad that we got them.