Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Technology Help!

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE music. I can just listen to it all day long. Sometimes I long to be back in Athens, Georgia right smack in the center of it all where most of the great bands begin. When I lived in Savannah, after I graduated from UGA, it was great. I still had a fairly good music scene, plus a jam-up classic rock station that I still miss to this day. When I moved to Macon, Ga. I was without a good radio station and it was no fun. Well, here I am in Jackson, Ms. where the music scene hasn't even thought of coming here, and don't get me started on radio stations.

So, enter Santa Claus. He got me an MP3 player so that I could download all the music that I wanted to have at my own disposal. I am SUPER excited about this gift. But one small hang-up.......................I don't know how to use it. :(

I am asking for feedback for all of you out there that download music to your devices. What are good sites, how much do they cost, what is the variety of music, are there free sites, etc.????

Help!! Just post your answers as comments. I greatly appreciate it!

PS - the new song on the blog is a shout-out to my old Athens days. Talk about some good music!

plug for brownie-goose

soooooooooo exciting!!

brownie-goose has a brand new website! check it out at www.browniegoose.com.

browse, bookmark and pass it along.

happy new year!

amy

Friday, December 26, 2008

Sleep Study Answers?????

Okay, so...........here we go again with sleep study hoop-la. Our original follow-up appointment was in January, but it got bumped up to earlier this week which of course freaked me out in thinking something was awful wrong that they needed to tell us sooner. We had heard back from the GI doctor and what she said surprised us.......the apnea was definitely NOT related to the reflux, in fact - she wasn't having any more reflux than any other child her age. So, in other words, no need for expensive Prevacid (thank goodness I was being supplied by the samples at work) or dietary changes. Her reflux was not even an issue to even think about. So, the first thing that went through my head was, "thank goodness we did an MRI because if not, I'd be wetting my pants by now." Then, at the sleep study doctors they told us something surprising as well. (By the way, I am sure most of you know how much I HATE surprises) Her central apnea was no longer a concern. Sure, she was still having apnea moments, but they seem to believe that they are related to natural phenomenon.....such as coughing, sighing, etc. So, I was glad we did another study so that they could further look into that.

So what gives, right? They think that she is having disorders of arousal. Basically, she is getting too much of a period of REM sleep that is characterized by slow-wave sleep. I know, Claudia......yawn, yawn. So what does this mean? Basically, in this stage of sleep that she tends to fall in she is having a tremendous amount of parasomnias (nightmares, terrors, etc) that is causing her to cry out and awaken. This is the same phenomenon that is known to make people sleep-talk and sleep-walk. So, what do we do? Funny, the docs want to do a rigorous sleep schedule, good thing I quit my job, right!? They think that the reason she spends so much time in this particular part of her sleep is because she is soooo sleep deprived and her body is craving this deep sleep. So, if we get her on a rigorous sleeping schedule, we are hoping to avoid any deprivation so that she can get some normal sleep. Well, this is what I have wanted from the get-go. Here is the kicker, it doesn't really go away. The sleep MD that we were talking to has an 8 year old that is still suffering. So, Byron and I are thinking of robbing a bank to buy a house that has another wing in which to put her. Haha, just kidding, really. About robbing the bank. :)

They also believe she is hyper-sensitive to stimuli when sleeping which is why she awakens so often. (There you go Mandy, my OT friend) Basically, she is an incredibly light sleeper. So, once again, we are in need of another wing in which to place her. Anyone that knows of this sort of mansion that we could afford on one salary (a resident's salary might I add), let me know please!

So, here we go again. Rigorous sleep schedule, here we come. Thank goodness I've got all the time in the world to practice to make perfect!

"Mare-ing Kiss-thmas"



Well, Santa Claus did visit......whether we had been nice or not! Louisa still hasn't grasped the entire concept of Santa, she is actually petrified of him. She will call him "Claws" or "Senta" and say "ho ho ho, mareing kiss-thmas." She never once bothered with the presents under the tree which was a blessing. On Christmas Eve, we ate a ham (my first one I ever cooked!) and allowed her to open one present since that was a tradition that both Byron and I had growing up. We let her open a book that we could read before she went to bed. She loved it, and in turn went into the living room and started to grab presents from under the tree and said "open pressens." Well, her behavior was short-lived.

The next morning, Christmas morning, Byron was on call so he had to go in and round but when he got back, we opened presents. She got lots of books, movies, an etch-a-sketch, a small battery-powered 4-wheeler and lots of plastic kitchen items from Aunt Sandy to go along with the kitchen that MiMi and Gandaddy are getting her. She LOVED the plastic food, she could have played with it all for hours.

One of the ENT attending doctors had us over for Christmas lunch since we were stuck here in Mississippi with Byron being on call. We had a great time. They have pet ducks and a pet bird that visited with us, so Lula Kate was impressed. Here are just a few pictures from the day.

Posing with daddy and his new jacket with her finger in her nose looking for more presents.


Watch out......Lula behind the wheel! PS - she has a slight obsession with putting bows in her hair if you were wondering.


Mallard & Lucy enjoying a toy.


Murray is just happy if you give her a box.


Haha, here comes trouble.......the high-heeled princess shoes and a purse. Ha! What a priss!!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

RSV..........de-coded.

So, my first "real day" as a stay at home mom was a disaster. I was at Children's Medical Group with a sick child. I was soooo embarrassed to have to go, but I had already done all of the things I could think of to do at home, so it was off to see Dr. Smith again. And he thought he got rid of me, ha!

Turns out my hacking, coughing, snotty, wheezing, fever-running child had RSV, just as I figured she did. See, Cheryl (at C3M) I did listen to you sometimes. I remember one RSV season you told me that if you listened closely enough to the cough - you could hear a certain hack to it that meant RSV. Well, she had that hack, and I just knew it. So, on home with some steroids and some breathing treatments (which I am sure for those of you moms who have done this before with young children, is NEVER fun).

For those of you who may not know what RSV is, I will spare you the boring definition (since I have hung up my RN for now) and instead give you some of the definitions that I came up with yesterday. Here goes, RSV stands for:

1. Really Snotty Varmit
2. Really Should (have some) Vicks (vapor rub)
3. Raspy Sounding Voicer
4. Rattling Sneezing Vomiter
5. Really Shoddy "Vacation"

I came up with many more, but I will keep it at my top 5 to avoid posting profanity, anything too vulgar or inappropriateness.

She is doing much better today, so I really can't complain. Until the next event.........

PS - I gave my mom a hard time yesterday because I think her and dad gave me the wrong name. I love Amy, don't get me wrong, but maybe if they named me "Murphy" then Murphy's Law maybe wouldn't apply to me so often!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Feeding the Dogs





This was cracking me up. I was busy trying to tidy up the house so that my Friday morning clean wouldn't be too awful and I could hear Louisa tinkering in the breakfast room and hear the dog bowls clinging. She loves to bang them around and play with them. Well, I started to hear the "ting" of the food hitting the bowls and I walked in there to find her reaching down into the big bag of dog food and grabbing out handfuls and placing them into the bowls for the dogs to eat. Mallard & Lucy were loving the attention. To pun, they were eating it up. Haha, I know. Honestly, she did this for like 30 minutes - she NEVER concentrates on something for that long. It was too cute. She kept saying, "Nucy eat, Mawward eat." I was able to get some things done, you know my motto, "whatever works."

By the way - I am now officially unemployed. Scary. It hasn't hit me yet. I am sure that I will enjoy it Monday morning when I don't have to wake up with my alarm!! Yipee.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Bittersweet Surrender

There is a song by Big Head Todd & the Monsters that describes how I feel right now. The words say, "It's bittersweet, more sweet than bitter, bitter than sweet, it's a bittersweet surrender." Tomorrow is my last day at Children's Medical Group and I can't decide how I really feel. I'm excited one moment, scared the next, ready for it, freaked out, sad, happy, etc. This was a tough decision for me to make, and for some reason, I am still questioning it. I am not sure why, and Dr. Smith (the MD that I work for) even said himself that there is nothing better for a child than their mother to be home with them. So, everything should be ok, right?

I tried to break it down last night as I laid awake in bed (with a screaming child all night you get used to lying awake in bed) and I think I finally figured it out. I think I am afraid of losing my identity. I am a pediatric nurse, I know what I am doing and although it is the BIGGEST oxy-moron to think I am "just going to be a mom," it scares me. At work, I can diagnose an ear infection with just a few symptoms from a mom, I can spot strep throat a mile away, pneumonia can't hide from me and I can look at an immunization record and tell you exactly what you need or don't need. I can give shots with my eyes closed and tell you doses of medicines and the right ones off the top of my head. However, I am not sure that being a mom is so simple. Nursing is hard, don't get me wrong, but I know that what I am now up against is way harder than anything I've done in scrubs. It scares the mess out of me. I think this is why I am bittersweet.

Don't get me wrong, I'm already planning out my days and getting a schedule down (of course scheduling treadmill time so that I can run and watch Ellen) and planning playdates, etc. I am really looking forward to being able to clean the house more than just once a week (yep, there is the OCD). But, I will miss my days at CMG. I will miss Thursday afternoons falling apart at the seams, insane requests from parents, laughing because I am so swamped that I don't know if I'm coming or going, my sweet patients, telling Dr. Smith over and over how it would be if I ruled the world, etc. But this is a new chapter, I am hanging up the RN for a while. Wish me luck!

PS - Thanks for all of those (friends, patients, etc) who have helped me with this decision. Some parents at work (you know who you are) have been soooo supportive and helping me in being okay with my decision. So, here we go trying out to be "just a mom."

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Christmas Tree Farm



The place where we went to pick out a pumpkin also has a tree farm where you can go and cut down your own tree. I have never done this before, but have wanted to for a few years, so we took Louisa back to Nichols-Boyd Farms today to pick out the perfect tree. Luckily we got there at a time that wasn't too crowded and we were able to get on the tractor and go out to the field where we got to chose our own Leland Cyprus. We found the perfect one, and a nice boy that worked at the farm cut it down for us. Louisa was too busy running around and kicking dirt balls to care about the tree, but I was stoked.

When we got home Byron was SUPER sweet and put all of the lights on the tree (temper-tantrum city for me) while I put the wreaths on the windows and got all of the mantles (we have 3 fireplaces, yes 3.....and not a one have we ever used!) and stockings ready. Louisa was once again too busy, this time eating popcorn, to care. Then she got into helping Byron put the ornaments on the tree and all you could hear from the other end of the house "I do it, no I hold it." Yes, Louisa, you can do it.

Here are some pictures.

This is Louisa watching the man cut down the tree.


Loving to run around in the field and kick all of the dirt balls.


"Helping" us to trim the tree.



Daddy carrying the tree.


Too bad you can't see the horns that usually disrupt the halo.


Here is the finished product, well sort-of finished. Haven't gotten all of the ornaments because I can't find my box of wire thingies that hang the ornaments on the tree to finish.




PS - here is April, the donkey/zebra mix that is the inspiration behind our goldfish "Zonkey."

Alabama Christmas

If you are not an Alabama fan, you may want to turn down the volume of the blog during the month of December. I love music, all kinds, but there is something about Alabama that I just love. Well, I grew up listening to the original Alabama Christmas tape each year at Christmas. Believe it or not, I cannot find the CD, I have looked for the last few Christmases. But, anyway - I am not one that really enjoys decorating the tree or house, etc. Crazy I know. But it is a no-brainer that listening to some of Alabama's Christmas songs will get me in the Christmas mood quickly. They almost put chills on my arms when I hear them. I was very sad to see that I couldnt download all of the songs to play on my blog - but I found a few.

There is not anything else that I can think of that brings me back to childhood more than this album. I can remember being in the den of our house on Nassau playing this tape over and over, and flipping it when it needed to be on side 2 and dancing and singing, probably driving my mom crazy since I dont think she really likes country music! Sadly, Thistlehair the Christmas Bear was one that I couldnt find, but I remember before I learned how to work the tape player asking Dad to play the bear song over and over and not understanding why I had to listen to all the other songs before it got to it! Just goes to show, I've never had patience! Also, during Homecoming Christmas there was a spot on the tape that was bad so it always sounded funny.

Hope you all enjoy and maybe it will bring you back too!

Friday, December 5, 2008

The morning after............


This picture says it all. She is a good sport. Once again, that trait did not come from her mama. You can see the markings that they use to place probes, and for some reason they use permanent marker that doesn't like to come off, so she has red marks for days. Also, they use some sort of wax to put all of the probes on her head, so you can tell it wrecks havoc on her hair, talk about a bad hair day. The sleep study went fair, Byron did this one with her and she did her regular waking/screaming cycles again, we just hope that it correlated with the pH probe machine to determine if that is the causative factor. We have a follow-up appointment on January 6th. So, until then.....................

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Sleep Study Round 2

I know in my last post about the sleep study I said I wouldn't do it again because it was so awful, but here we go again. The sleep guys are hell-bent and pressed in believing that it is her reflux causing the central apnea, but the GI doctor says no way. So, the only way that we can figure this out and go further with treatment is to do another sleep study with a pH probe in place. Here is the kicker, I have to take her to the GI doctor tomorrow afternoon before the sleep study for the probe to be placed. For those fortunate enough not to know what is involved with this, let me just paint a beautiful picture. They have to put a tube down Lula's nose that goes into her belly. Yep. For real. I personally have never had this done to me, but unfortunately have done it to many children when I worked at the Children's Hospital, and it is not a good time to be had by anyone. I am so nervous and torn up that I cannot even sit still. It is so past my bedtime right now but I cannot even think of sleeping, I just panic each time I close my eyes. I feel awful.

Just please everyone say a little prayer that we will get some answers this time. I know Byron and I are so ready to move on from this, and if Louisa could just put it in words I can only imagine what she'd be saying.

I will try and keep everyone updated, but we probably wont have the results for a few weeks.

brownie-goose for Christmas

Here is yet another plug - check out www.browniegoose.com for all of your last-minute Christmas shopping needs. I have added new inventory and gotten new fabrics.....check it out!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to be cowgirls.........




For this Thanksgiving, we took a trip to visit Patsy and Doug (Byron's mom and step-dad) in Kentucky. They are cattle farmers in RURAL Kentucky, which is just about as gorgeous this time of year as it comes. Secretly, I want to be a farmer. There is something so soothing and serene about being in the middle of nowhere, looking out your kitchen window and seeing rolling hills for miles dotted with cattle. Love it. The nervous breakdown that I was heading for just ran away as soon as I stepped out of Remy (my car) and took in a deep breath of fresh air (with a little scent of cow-poo). Seriously, I could sit outside forever, freezing to death just watching the cows, listening to them and watching the roosters run around and scratch the ground. I would just have to figure out how to get over not having a Target within a few hours and learn how to not make myself carsick on the long, steep and winding roads. I feel refreshed.

Lula LOVED it. All of Byron's family was there - most of them came in from Louisiana and Georgia. We had a ball. Louisa loved playing with Kaney, and the two of them are going to wear Claudia and I out when they get older and they are together. Maybe we wont move back to Georgia.......haha, just kidding. Cant wait to get on that midnight train! She loved to watch the cows, but didn't like to be near them. I think she was so curious, but scared to death of them. She loved to "ride" the tractors and the mule (the motorized golf-cart type vehicle). Doug has the farm down to a tee and has a huge feed barn where most of the cattle comes to eat. Well, Louisa and I were watching the cows eat through the gate and I kept telling her not to touch because the gate was covered in dirt, well, guess what. She touched. And before I could get to her and wipe it off, of course she ate it and immediately told me "I nike it" (which means I don't like it). Well, of course she didn't like it, it wasn't dirt - it was cow pooie!! Gross.

She and I also had a battle of the control-freaks. She was having issues going to sleep there, I think just because there was so much going on. At one time I was trying to rock her to sleep, and I kept saying "okay Louisa, we are going night-night." The joker looked at me with a straight face and said "mama, I NOT night-night." I just about whipped her rear end. This child is going to give me gray hair already, can you imagine her as a teenager. I must have been bad as a child, maybe this is my payback. Ha. I was an angel. :)

Does this remind you of that movie The Christmas Story when the kid couldn't move his arms because the jacket was so thick? Haha.


This is the moment "I nike it" when she ate cow-dung.


What a motley crew!


Looking into the feed barn


Louisa, pa-paw and Possum (the cattle dog)


Patsy says, "happy cows come from Kentucky." I say, "beef, it's what's for dinner."

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

A time to be Thankful

Somehow, Thanksgiving has crept up on me this year. Is it really the end of November already!!?? I mean, I have seen the turkeys and the orange and brown decorations and all, but when did this happen?

When I picked Lula up from school yesterday she had her "artwork" that was a picture of a turkey and it said "This year I am thankful that I am not a turkey." Cute, right. It dawned on me, that I have not even sat still long enough to give thanks this year and determine what it is that I am thankful for. As with every year, there are a ton of things that I am so grateful and thankful for, but I try to focus on just one. So, as I laid in bed last night I thought long and hard. It seems that right now in my life, things keep going wrong (or just not how I want them to, which you know - is wrong). I keep finding myself asking for a break and for something to just go "easy." Well, it dawned on me last night that for all of these things that are "going wrong," I bet that each one has a silver lining that I just have not found yet. I am a true believer that everything happens for a reason, whether we can figure out the reason or not - but this is sooo true, and I dont know how I have overlooked this for so long. So, now instead of focusing on everything that is not going my way, I am going to try and find the silver lining to it all. I know it is there, I just havent been looking at it right. So, this year, I am thankful for silver linings. I think there is a Grateful Dead song for that.....I will get by, we all know the tune.

Okay, that is enough "cheese" and "deep thoughts" for me for the next 2 years. I will spare everyone from here on out. I know that my mom is reading this and is just reveling in the fact that yes, I am thankful for something. She started a Thanksgiving journal about 5 years ago that she brings out each Thanksgiving and has everyone write what they are thankful for. I have made fun of her each and every year, refused to write in it and told her how cheesy it is. Well mom, here is your laugh. Haha.

Im going to do a first and give a "shout-out" in my blog. I want to wish mom and dad Happy Birthdays. Dad's bday is tomorrow (Wed) and mom's is Thurday. I hope that yall both have a great day!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

All I want for Christmas....................

.........is some SLEEP!!!! For real. That is all I ask. Just 4 uninterrupted hours. I know, Dr. Smith - be careful what you wish for, right!? But I think I would do so good with it. On Friday, I was home sick with the stomach bug, and I got tons of sleep, no thanks to Phenergan, but that doesn't count!

Last night was ROUGH with Lula. I don't know what was going on. Don't know if she is starting to get sick or what, but she just did not sleep. Usually, she sleeps great for the first 3 hours or so once we first put her down, but not last night. Finally at one point, I told Byron, "I'm just going to get her and put her in our bed." First of all, Louisa is not a snuggler but I thought, hey, what kid doesn't want to be in mom and dad's bed? Seriously, that is like the best place EVER when you are a kid. Well, she hasn't gotten that message. She squirmed and whispered and talked and poked my eyeballs and stuck her fingers in my nose and mouth, etc. Finally, I just got back up and went back into her room into the most uncomfortable wooden rocking chair ever, and got back to my business, old-school style. Who knows. I sure don't.

Anyway, we are leaving for Kentucky Tuesday night after Byron and I get off of work. Another all-night trip. Wahoo. However, Byron is currently outside throwing up his toenails (because he doesn't want to risk waking Lou in the house) and I can only imagine that Louisa is next, so I don't really know how that is supposed to play in with our trip. I know that God only gives you what you can handle, but I think he thinks a lot more highly of me than I do.........because I can see the nervous breakdown right around the corner. That wooden rocker that is so uncomfortable is about to see me fall right off of it, wont be the first time, ha!

Daddy's little "helper"


So, after Louisa had helped me grocery shopping, she was actually an angel, when we came home to unload groceries she stayed outside and helped Byron while I unloaded everything. I couldn't resist this picture, although Byron's head is cut off (I was hanging out the front door trying to capture the moment) I just thought it was too cute to pass up!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

"I poo-poo potty"

I know that everyone is finally going to be able to sleep tonight knowing that Louisa poo-pooed in the potty. :) We aren't "formally" potty training just yet, but trying to get certain times down until I am able to be home with her and be consistent. But, we always have her sit on the potty before we get in the tub. She has gone tee-tee about 90% of the time that we sit her down, and we all hoop and holler and she gets sticker. So, our bathtub is covered with stickers, haha. They are actually candy corn stickers too because they were on clearance at Target! Anyway, tonight she didn't have to tee-tee, but as we were about to get out of the tub, she leaned over and said, "uh-oh poo-poo." Since we have recently had some accidents in the tub (haha Carol, remember that one!!) I quickly got her up and put her on the potty just to see. SHE POOED!! We were cheering and hollering and carrying on so much I think she was confused! Then, she got up and I was trying to clean her up and she looked at the poo in the potty and jumped and started crying. It scared her! Of course she got a candy corn sticker for that one.

Now that everyone who doesn't have children is soooo super-grossed out by this blog, I will alleviate any anxiety that you may have........no, I don't have a picture for this blog. I thought of taking a photo of Mr. Hanky the Christmas Poo, but I thought I would spare you all! As I have said before, I am scared of potty training, but I am getting optimistic that this may not be as bad as I thought. I probably shouldn't get my hopes up, but whatever!!

Monday, November 17, 2008

plug for brownie-goose

As Christmas is just around the corner, the stress levels are high. What to get for that kid who has it all? No worry, check out www.browniegoose.com and all of your worries slip away. Outfit them in a fun, funky outfit that will leave them as stylish as they come. New inventory has been posted, so check us out!

I will ship US priority mail - which usually come pretty fast for those who are far away.

Take a look and email me at browniegoose@hotmail.com with any orders or questions!

Thanks,
Amy

Sunday, November 16, 2008

A picture speaks 1,000 words



This picture really needs no explanation. This is the true-blue Louisa Kate, tutu and all. What a mess.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Campfire on Cowan Place


Mom and Dad gave Byron and I a copper fire pit for Christmas like 4 years ago. We wanted one sooooo bad. Well, it has been in the box ever since because we haven't had a place to put it before. Well, since Byron has been off this week he has been working on the backyard. For anyone who has seen our backyard, we all know what a JUNGLE it is. He bricked in more of our patio off the deck and now we have a perfect place for the fire pit. So, we cranked it up tonight. This was Louisa's first campfire. We roasted "mellows" and drank hot chocolate. She didn't quite catch the concept of roasting the marshmellows, but enjoyed playing with the stick. She also enjoyed telling Byron "moe ticks" which means more sticks. Slavedriver. We had a great time. Byron is excited too because this gives him the opportunity to get rid of some of the backyard debris. Thanks Mom and Dad for the gift!!


I had this rocking horse when I was a little girl. I think my Aunt Jane made it for me, please someone correct me if I am wrong. But, I loved it. Mom and Dad brought it to Mississippi on one of their voyages and until tonight, Lula hasn't cared anything about it. But, tonight she was all about getting on it and "ri-ing." Yes, she is wearing a tutu, thanks again mom and dad for exposing her to that at Walmart the last time yall were here, because the last time we were at Target she threw an absolute fit until I got it for her. Now, she wont take it off. We all know that story. But, this is a cute picture of her on the horse that I once rode on. Brownie points to the person that has the picture of me riding it when I was little and can email it to me so I can add to the blog.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Third time's a charm..........

We went for tubes this morning, and anesthesia was a walk in the park for Lula this time. Like they say, third time's a charm. She was given Versed in pre-op and she got drunk as a skunk! She was so glassy-eyed and giggly, and when one of the nurses was talking and getting information from us, Lou tooted and giggled like it was the funniest thing ever. Way to go, little miss Emily Post. We had originally gone to have the left tube replaced since it had fallen out, but Dr. Carron (her ENT) said once he got her in the OR he looked in the right ear and that one had fallen out as well, so we have brand new tubes in both ears, again. She came out of anesthesia better than she has ever! Usually she screams, bucks, arches, etc. But today she just snuggled. What a pro. I am keeping my fingers crossed that this set stays and does its job - but if not, I wonder if the ENT world works like retail........buy 2 get 1 free. :) My bank account could only hope.

For dessert tonight, Byron made Lula a strawberry shortcake. It was her first experience with whipped cream........I will let the picture tell the story.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Happy Birthday to you!

Today, November 13th my friend Julie's little boy, Chapman, turned one. We went to his birthday party which was crawling with kids and toys. Louisa had a great time playing and her favorite past-time, watching other kids play. Julie had made some delicious cupcakes, Katie - you would love them, funfetti cake mix, still a favorite, and Lula Kate was loving the blue icing. She was able to play with Chapman, Ella and Reagan. It is hilarious to me to sit back and watch myself and my friends (although I didn't know them in college and high school, I can just imagine) at this point in our lives. This party, and the other parties from now on, is soooo different from yester-years. There are some similarities, in that there is a lot of screaming, running around, acting crazy, and mumbling and slurring - but the catch is, no one has been drinking and everyone acting a fool is allowed to because of their age. You could have set a clock by the meltdowns and temper-tantrums that began around "bedtime." All in all, we had a great time, and here are some pictures.
Chapman, looking like a smurf, enjoying some birthday cupcake.


Louisa and Ella playing at Chapman's picnic table.


Ahhhhh........the blue icing. Like baby crack.


Absolute may-hem.


Tomorrow Louisa is getting another tube put in her left ear, since the other one has fallen out. We have to be at the hospital at 6 am. Gross. She is getting to be a pro at this anesthesia stuff. Scary, isn't it?

Guiney and Pa-Paw come to town


Here is Louisa and Doug (Pa-Paw) playing on the fire truck at the park.


Patsy and Louisa, notice how Lula is digging in her pants. This is her new trick. It is SUPER gross when she has gone "big potty."

Byron's mom and step dad came into town on Monday. I had to work, as always (not for long) but Byron is on vacation this week so he was able to spend some time with them and Louisa. Although they were only in town for a day, they were able to go to the park with Louisa and we all went to dinner at a place that I was just waiting for Ashton Kutcher to jump out and tell me I was being punked. Here is the story. I will withhold the name of the restaurant to save any ill-feelings:
We decide to go to this restaurant that everyone in Jackson has told us that we need to go eat at. Everyone said the catfish is so good and that the food is the best. Okay, so we were sold. Well, we get there and are seated at a table..........and then the story begins. We have paper place mats with tons of writing on them and a mention of a few food items. We all flip them over, thinking for sure the menu is on the other side, ummm - nope. Haha, punked number 1 - that IS the menu. Only 2 choices. Seriously. So, the waiter (who is wearing a hat with a feather in it, how unsanitary is that, plus he is sooooo unkempt looking that I think I can smell him just by looking at him, and he had grease stains all over his outfit and hat........so, I'm thinking you serve AND cook here...hmmmm, punked number 2) comes and takes our drink orders, and then soon returns to our table with our drinks in tin mugs. Yes, like homeless people eat soup out of, punked number 3. Not kidding. Well, the food comes soon. Here is the spread: we are all served on tin pie dishes, for real, there is a big random plastic tube (the kind you put utensils in on the side of the stove) of coleslaw, some catfish, some fries, hush puppies and fried chicken that has black, yes I said black, batter. Then to kick it all off, something starts to reek of moth balls. By this point, I am checking all over the place for Ashton and his hidden cameras, almost beggin him to show up so that I can be put out of this embarrassing and weird situation. Somehow, we left the place after eating so-so food, and he never jumped out and punked us. So, the scary thing is........that place was serious. Seriously.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

The launch of brownie-goose

For those of you who may or may not know already, I am retiring from my job at Children's Medical Group on December 18th. This has been a tough decision for me, as I really do love being a pediatric nurse, but Louisa needs my full attention right now. I need to be a mom first, not a nurse for right now.

In the meantime, I have decided to try and expand my love of sewing. I have started a website at http://browniegoose.blogspot.com
that I will continue to update with new designs as the time comes. You can also get to it at www.browniegoose.com. Please bookmark me, keep checking back and most importantly - tell all of your friends. I have literally just started, so my inventory is small right now - but keep checking back as I have tons of patterns and fabric, I am just waiting for more time in which to spend in front of my sewing machine!

Wish me luck!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

What a beautiful brain!

Well, thankfully Louisa's MRI was clean as they come. That was good news for all! She did fairly well with the procedure and came out of anesthesia better than she did when she had her tubes placed.

As for the GI appointment, I am still speechless. Although the sleep guys thought that it was almost certain that her central apnea was related her her reflux, the pediatric gastroenterologist doesn't agree. She said there is no research that has been shown to link the two together in her age group. So, back to square one - but with lighter hearts knowing that her brain is fine.

As for a plan, I have no clue. I cannot update anyone at the moment as to what we are going to do next because I personally have no idea. This frustrates me to no end. So, as soon as I know something, I will update everyone.

PS - I have the CUTEST pictures of Lula with her new potty, but Byron thinks it better that I not share them on the internet due to some weirdos that may be out there..........but as soon as I can capture a moment with some clothing on, I will share it. She is soooo excited about the potty and she told everyone in Target while we were buying it that she "teetee and poopoo potty." She was so proud. Now, she loves to sit on it and put the lid up and down. I personally am scared to death of potty-training, but maybe this will be one thing that Louisa will do the easy way. Is that asking too much?

Friday, October 31, 2008

Queen for a Day



We all know that Louisa is great - but her preschool crowned her QUEEN of the school. Seriously. Yes, I must admit she had some help from some sponsors, but whatever, she is queen. Her preschool had a fundraiser that you could "vote" (ie. give money) for the queen and king of the school. She was crowned tonight at a ceremony. Whether it was that she was tired from the long day at school being dressed as a peacock and having a Halloween party, or she was hurting from yet ANOTHER ear infection...........she was acting like a real queen, throwing a fit and having a meltdown. It was okay, the other princesses and princes at the ceremony were starting to meltdown too, must have been dinnertime. The preschool director and I joked that the last thing "miss priss" needed was a crown, she is known at school for prissing up and down the halls and telling everyone their business. I seriously have no idea where she gets that from. :) Here are some pictures.

Queen and King of Woodland Hills Preschool


Acting like a queen..........meltdown, anyone?


The royal family


Oh yeah - here is a final picture of the pretty peacock for the year. This was taken this morning before I took her to school. Sadly, when I dropped her off at school she was the ONLY one dressed up. I was soooo embarrassed for her. I worried that she was being made fun of all day. Byron even asked me on the phone at lunch "did you bring extra clothes for her in case she feels self-conscious?" Ugghhh, that made me feel worse. But, luckily when I picked her up there were lots of kids in costume. Thank goodness!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Jack-O-Lantern
















So, on Sunday - Louisa had her very first experience with pumpkin carving. We got out the newspaper for all of the pumpkin guts, set out plenty of pumpkin-carving materials, and most importantly, had Lula in just her diaper, because we all know how messy pumpkin carving gets. Well, we couldn't get her out of the house without shoes, and well - you'll never guess which ones she picked. Thanks Mom and Dad. At least we live in Mississippi, where it may be okay to have your child naked on the front porch in cowboy boots. She wasn't too sure of it at first, but once she started to get her hands dirty, she had a great time. She kept calling the carved pieces "apples" which is what she calls just about every fruit-type item. One of these pictures cracks me up, it looks like she is practicing her Vanna White pose showing off the pumpkins. :) Of course, we had to get her dressed up nice later and take the "real" pictures. She was having such a good time laughing at Byron - her Aunt Courtney could hear her squealing inside her house across the street!

Quick update - Louisa's MRI is scheduled for Monday. We have to be at the hospital at 8 am, and I am not sure yet what time they will actually do the MRI. But, obviously they have to sedate her for her to stay still. If she is anything like she was coming out of anesthesia for her ear tubes - I am in for a treat Monday. Talk about spitfire!! Later that same day we are supposed to meet with the pediatric gastroenterologist. Keep her in your thoughts, and I will try and keep everyone posted on the results.