Sunday, February 28, 2010

Finishing Up February

Matt just got this picture of Hayden on his I Phone, I had to throw this in. We are loving her adorable smiles she is giving!

As several of you know, this month Pittsburgh has received the most snow this city has ever had. It has been pretty crazy to be a part of this historic time. Because of the snow my favorite Pittsburgh Phenomenon has come out full force: The Parking Chair.

The parking chair has always existed here and there, but it has never been as prevalent. Because of all the snow and all the off street parking in this city, people have to dig out their parking spots on the street so they can get their car in and out and be able to park. Even though the street is public parking, when someone puts a chair there (the place where they dug out) it becomes their "private" parking spot.

Double click on the T-shirt above to be able to see it better, it is well worth it! People here take the parking chair very seriously!! One lady sprayed a car that parked in 'her spot" down with her hose. It was one giant ice cube! Then the other day on the news we learned of an old man that started a shootout because someone removed his parking chair and parked in his spot. A policeman ended up being shot. Oh Pittsburgh how we love you! :)

The snow brought us even closer to our loved neighbors. We all were out digging not only each other out, but all the cars that got stuck on our street and there were a lot of them!! Carter always wanted to get his own shovel out and "help."

This video is when Carter about died and went to heaven, a UPS truck got stuck right in front of our house. The whole time I was getting him in his snow clothes as quick as I could, he kept yelling out the front door, "Wait for me truck, wait for me!!"

Good thing Carter was out there. He kept directing traffic and telling everybody what to do. He was invaluable! :)
Finally, they had to bring in a big tractor and a tow truck to get him out.

These are our two adorable neighbor girls that are so great with our children.

When Grandma Bon came to help when Hayden was in the hospital for the second time, she went out and built Carter this awesome snow tunnel. Pretty impressive Grandma!!

Valentines Day. I wanted to get a picture because we looked so cute and holiday coordinated. Our favorite Valentine was sleeping but I snagged a picture of her when she woke up. So I have to be silly and point out I had a really cute red skirt on, too.

This is Hayden with her chunky buddy Evan that is only 8 days older than she.

So the other day we were at Carter's buddy's house and he came down the stairs crying, "I don't want to be in handcuffs." And then that night we had this conversation:

This is one of those videos that is probably just for Grandmas and Grandpas and siblings from far away. I remember seeing videos of this sort for some of my friends kids and thinking, boring! And these videos are kind of boring except for flesh and blood that ache to see anything and everything about her. So for those interested here you go, there will probably be a fair amount of these:

We recently went to the Science Center (I LOVE our science center here) and they just opened this Sports Works where you learn about the science of sports and athletics. Carter loved this racing part. He was very intense about it. I was trying to get his picture, but apparently I was taking away his focus because he was yelling at me, "Don't take my picture, Mom!"

The Race:

I love this picture because a) this water section is his favorite part of the whole Science Center. He could play for hours here. It has been a long time since we have been here and it was so cool to see how he has grown up. His play was so much more methodical and well thought out. You could see the wheels turning in his head. b) my favorite thing about this picture is his tongue. I don't know how many times I have seen Matt's tongue in this same position. Father like son Big Time!
About an hour outside of Pittsburgh is one of Frank Lloyd Wright's famous houses he designed: Falling Water. At the Science Center they have an awesome model railway of Western Pennsylvania and the newest addition is Falling Water. It looks just like it!!

I had my precious Angel in my Moby wrap (I HIGHLY recommend this wrap) and I LOVED having her right there against my chest snuggled up to me. She is so precious!

My Construction Worker

Since Carter could walk he has loved pushing around trucks like this. i know this picture is bleary, but it warms my heart to see him doing what he loves.

This picture was taken in December with Matt's co-resident spouses. All spouses of the residents were pregnant at the same time except for two. We are missing one lady who would be second from the last.
This is us just a week ago. The first three babies are within an 8 day span and then between Hayden and the next baby boy there is 3 1/2 weeks. The next lady is due in May and then June.

Here are some pictures of my precious baby girl:

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Beautiful in Brown (and Grey)

This face though so sad, is one of my favorites! This is the face she makes right as she is about to start her, "you hurt my feelings" cry. I hurt her feelings here because I was snapping her picture and not feeding her. How rude Mom!

"CHEESE!" (says Carter). Carter and Hayden are in their little matching outfits for church. I so wanted to get pictures before we left to church, but Hayden was so tired and just needed to sleep. This was the first time she was in a dress.

I am sad I didn't get better pictures of her little shoes, but they are little black patent leather shoes. She also has little pink tights on to match her pink flower in her hair. Hopefully next time they are in these outfits both will be in a mood that I can get some good pictures. (And yes, I know at least half of you reading this are thinking in your minds, "I told you so!" in regards to me loving a little girl and everything that comes with that {dresses, bows, shoes, etc}. You are all RIGHT!)

Friday, February 12, 2010

Get Your Bowl On

Last Monday (Feb. 8th) Matt, Carter and I went bowling for a friend's preschool fundraiser. Hayden fresh out of the hospital got to stay home with Grandma Bon. This was Carter's first time bowling and he was pretty stoked about it! Below, Carter explains how to properly bowl (before he went) so if you are having trouble in your bowling skills let the C-Man give you some tips:

I think he learned his mad skills from a Little Bear he watched earlier that day when Little Bear talked about how to play marbles when he was trying to win his marbles back from his tricky friend who stole them all. That mean monkey Mitsy, when will she ever learn to play fair?

Carter loved the lights and especially the music:

Though his face looks somewhat bored, this is not the case. This is his face of concentration. It takes a lot of work and focus to get your ball and send it down this ramp!

This next move we like to call, "The Double Bowl" (oops!):

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Hayden's Home from the Hospital

As you can see she is pretty excited about it!!
Matt stayed at the hospital Thursday night and at 4:30 Friday morning the nurse came in and told Matt that Hayden was being transferred to a step down unit. So when I got there Friday morning I was in for a bit of a surprise. Then to top it all off, that morning we had a new group of doctors round on her and they said that if she kept her oxygen levels up (she had been taken off oxygen about an hour previous) that she would be able to go home that day. When they first said that, I was in shock. There is no way that my baby was ready to go home. Who were they to pronounce that she was ready when they just saw her for the first time and had no idea where she had been? But after posting my fear on Facebook and having so many of my family and friends saying they had had the same concerns when they took their own children home from the hospital and everything turned out just fine, I started feeling more at ease. I also realized my fear was somewhat selfish. I began to rely so much on those monitors that let me know exactly where she was at. Would I be safe with her if I didn't have those monitors? A friend who used to be in our ward wrote a comment that was EXACTLY what was going on in my mind, "I know it's scary taking her home -- you've probably grown dependent on trusting the doctors and the monitors to tell you she's breathing ok and that her heart rate is good, etc. I remember wishing I had a screen telling me his oxygen levels just to make me feel sure. Trust the inspiration you've received so far to keep her safe. You've had extra help and you will continue to. You are in our prayers (and many others)!" I am so VERY GRATEFUL for all these comments and prayers that have and will continue to buoy us up.
So now we are home and things are gradually getting better. She refused to nurse for the first few feedings so I pumped and bottle fed. Then she could not get into a deep sleep. She would sleep for 5 - 15 minutes and then wake up. I was so worried about all the adjusting that was going to have to happen. Then I wasn't producing as much milk as she was wanting. It was hard to keep up on my pumping and eating while she was in the hospital plus combined with all the stress my milk level dropped a bit. But today (Sunday) has already shown improvement in every aspect. Once again, I am sure this is because of all the precious prayers that have been said on our behalf. We aren't out of the woods, but things are steadily getting better.

We are still giving her breathing treatments and medications.

Grandma Bonnie gets some playing time in with her. It has been so WONDERFUL having grandma here to help with Carter. Now that Hayden is home she gets to play with our fun, alert baby. When she was out right after I had Hayden, she was still sleeping most of the day and wasn't smiling yet or anything.

Her hair is curly when it is wet so we decided to try putting gel in it today to see if it would stay curly. And it did! Matt, Carter and I all have very straight hair so it was a shock to us to have a baby with curly hair.

Who would have thought breathing treatments would put her to sleep? She is a pretty chill girl.

Another way we knew Heavenly Father was looking out for us by sending Hayden home Friday afternoon was as we were leaving the hospital it was starting to snow big time. By Saturday morning we had 2 feet of snow and there was no leaving the house to go anywhere! None of our neighborhood streets were plowed until today (and that was only very few of them). We have some pretty scary hills so there would not have been any trips to the hospital to see Hayden for whoever slept at the house and no way to get her home if she was discharged.

We definitely took advantage of the snow and had a good time. This is Grandma Bon with Carter. The snow was clear up to the slide.

I love those red cheeks. And notice the shoveled snow is clear up to Matt's waistline.

Our buddy Jake trying to shovel his car out. Needless to say, it took a LONG time!

The snow in our back yard.

That is our mountain of snow after Matt shoveled our walks. Holy Smokes. And if any of you wondered, no the mailman did not come on Saturday. I know they say they come in rain, sleet and snow, but I guess 2 feet of snow is where they draw the line.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

My Beautiful Baby in the Hospital

Though I have thoroughly documented Hayden's hospital stay on Facebook, our blog is more of our family journal so I wanted to make sure and document it here as well.

Our precious Carter got sick last week around Wed. and probably starting around Saturday Hayden and I came down with it, too. On Sunday, she started not eating as well. Monday morning she ate at 6:30am and then refused to eat after that. She started acting very sluggish (she didn't wake up after 6:30 until about 1pm). She looked as white as a ghost. I kept calling Matt, telling him that I thought I should take her into the ER. But since I had already made a 2:30 dr appointment Matt kept telling me that I could wait. I should have known better. My whole being was telling me to take her in. The only thing that was holding me back was that she wasn't running a fever.

Finally, 2:30 rolled around and I took her into the Pediatrician's office. The nurse practitioner walked in took a look at her, listened to her lungs, and ran out the door to get the doctor. They checked her oxygen level and then the nurse practitioner looked at me and said they were calling an ambulance. I broke down and that point and just started crying. The Children's Hospital is only a few blocks away and I asked if I could just drive her there since my car was right there and I could take her right away. By this point they had put Hayden on oxygen and they told me that if they took her off of it long enough for me to drive her the few blocks she may not make it. They explained to me that a baby has a high reserve but once she has used up that reserve she gets so tired that she gives up and no longer wants to breath. So essentially she goes to sleep and never wakes up. That was where my precious Hayden was at. She had worked too hard and too long and was ready to give up.

It was so surreal driving in the ambulance with my little baby. I couldn't decide if I wanted to break down crying or if I should stay in the state of shock that I was in. Once we got to the ER we went straight to a room to start examination on her, but then we were moved to the trauma unit so they could keep a closer eye on her. In the Trauma unit the nurses and doctors aren't stretched as thin as far as their patient load is concerned. We had our wonderful home teacher Tannon come and help Matt give Hayden a blessing. (Matt met us at the Pediatrician's office right as Hayden and I were about to get on the ambulance so that he could get Carter and meet us at the hospital). After that, Matt took Carter home to get him to bed. I thought I was strong enough to be there on my own, but my awesome friend Marie came and she gave me lots of strength that I didn't know I needed.

Hayden in the Trauma Unit hooked up to all her wires and tubes.

This was the first time that Hayden looked somewhat peaceful.

At this point, Hayden was transferred to the PICU. In the transfer Hayden kind of crashed and she needed lots of attention once we got there. Her crib was surrounded so I had to stand in the background. But she had a nurse who was holding her head in her hand and looking straight in her eyes and singing to her. Hayden just fixated on this nurse and gathered all the strength she could from this angel lady. As her mom, my heart has gratitude a million times over for this nurse. I get teary-eyed every time I think of her. After Hayden settled down Marie left. Then Hayden had another scary episode. There was enough room around her crib that I could just hold on to her foot and I just stood there and cried while the doctors and nurses worked on her. I realized then, how much I had relied on Marie just being there with me.

The next morning (Tues, 2-2)when the doctors rounded and had looked at her chest x-rays and listened to her lungs, they diagnosed her with double pneumonia and bronchiolitis. The doctor told us that because she sounded and looked so bad that we should expect her to get worse before she got better and that there would be lots of ups and downs. There has definitely been lots of ups and downs, but thanks to all the prayers that were said on our behalf I don't think she ever spiraled down much worse than where she began.

Last night (Wed. 2-3) Bonnie and I came in to see her (I had gone home earlier so I could shower) and her eyes were filled with so much pain.

I was holding her and she was looking up at me with her pain-filled eyes pleading me to help her feel better. I felt so helpless and heartbroken.

That night I had gone home to get a good night sleep and Matt stayed at the hospital. When we talked before we went to bed, he said that he had found a double ear infection on her. It was so bad that she had puss draining out of her ear. I truly think he was inspired because everyone else just thought she was in pain because of her pneumonia. The fact that she has an ear infection is a puzzle for a couple reasons:

1. If she had an ear infection before she came in, why did her heavy duty antibiotics she was on not kick it?
2. How could she have developed that ear infection if she was on these antibiotics?
3. She is too young for ear infections. It is very rare for babies younger than 3 months to even get an ear infection.

So the ENT Dr just came and suctioned all the drainage out and it was A LOT! Her ear drum is ruptured and both ears are infected. They have her on ear drops and she looks so much better. I think that is the difference between her pain filled eyes and her eyes in the picture below (which is today after having ear drops all night long).

So when they suctioned her, it was the most upset moment she has had yet. I don't know if it has been the most painful thing she has gone through, because there has been some pretty painful stuff, but she finally has enough strength to really throw a fit. She got so upset that her heart rate hit 242. To put that in perspective, they want her heart rate to be in the 150s, which it's never been that low since we have been here. The ENT attending just came and said that she will not get tubes right now (that was a possibility earlier) but that because she is so young with bad ear infections she might be prone to ear infections and to be prepared to get tubes later. Also, our PICU doctor said that since she got ear infections so young it could just show that she is prone to infection and might have an immune deficincy. Only time will tell, so I am not going to worry about that now.

So as of right now, she is off her clear liquid only diet and is drinking breast milk from a bottle. Her heart rate is still high. But her oxygen that she is getting keeps decreasing. I wouldn't be surprised to see it go back up again, because she has dipped low a few times. Her coloring is still pale, but improving (this is another thing that fluctuates). Her eyes were looking really good for most of the day, but are now starting to look a little pain-filled again. She is doing awesome, but still has a lot going on in her tiny little body and still a ways to go.

She is our precious little girl and we love her so much. Thanks to everyone for your prayers. We have hundreds of people praying for her all over the country. She is on the prayer roll at several temples all over the country, too. We know that it is all because of these prayers that she has improved so much! We have felt the power of prayer and are grateful to each one of you!

Hayden in her PICU bed.

The view out our window. This is a great view to get an idea of our city Pittsburgh. The large building in the back is Matt's hospital that he works at.

More of our view.

My baby and me.

Hayden when she was looking her best yet earlier today. Sadly, she hasn't been able to stay so perky and happy.