Smile for the Joy of Others

Smile for the Joy of Others

Friday, February 27, 2009

Sacked Out

This was after a morning of running a few errands the other day. Since they have been sick, most activity has worn them out easily and quickly. There were a few errands that I had to do the other day, otherwise we would have been home.
Until next time, HB

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


We did get to see our pediatrician Monday afternoon. And I'm sure most mothers can relate to just feel better after talking to your doctor. It was easier talking to him than an ER physician that you know you aren't going to have a lengthy, family relationship with.

Our dr. seemed to think that it was a severe croup attack that brought on an asthma attack. He said that typically croup alone doesn't cause O2 sats to drop as low as BB's did, 82. And typically, being in the cold air or steam treatments will usually work within the first few minutes of treatment.

He said that BB was still wheezing bad enough to need breathing treatments and more steroids. He was actually surprised that the ER doctor had not advised us to continue breathing treatments with the medicine that I already have at home, Xopenex.

He diagnosed both the boys and is treating them for RSV, Croup, and Bronchitis. As his theory is, if one has it the other has it also or will eventually get it. (By the way, CB's cough had worsened over the weekend). He also advised that they stay away from the public for a few days. He said that there are so many viruses out there right now and especially ones that are affecting the lungs, he mentioned RSV and Pneumonia. He prescribed some strong antibiotics to knock out the Bronchitis but to also prevent them from getting pneumonia.

I am so blessed with a wonderful pediatrician. Although he tended to both my boys, he only charged for 1 office visit so my copay was only $20.00 instead of $40.00. He even went ahead and prescribed another round of antibiotics in case this round didn't knock it out so to keep me from having to come back up there. He said to wait 5 days after this round and if the cough is not gone to refill it. Which I am so grateful...the last thing we need is to go up there again and sit in the sick bay only to catch something else. However, it's not the doctor visit that is so costly, it's the medicine. Surely with $300.00 worth of medicine, they have got to get better.

In light of our medicine bills, we are now accepting donations to the "007 Twin Medical Fund"!

I have yet to have a decent night sleep since "that night". (Well, actually I haven't had a consistent, decent night sleep since I was 30 weeks pregnant which I guess comes with the territory of being a parent... but that's for another post). I've actually had BB sleep in the bed with me while JB has been on the couch. He has started off in his bed with JB bringing him to bed with me. He will be sleeping in his bed tonight and will remain unless his coughing gets "out of hand", but I'm sure I won't sleep very well again. You can still hear him coughing that horrible "barking" cough and when I can't seem to make myself fall into a deep sleep, I just "jump" awake to listen for more. I'm sure as they get better and with time, I'll finally feel comfortable enough to get some "deep" sleep.

Thank you all for your prayers and emails of concern; they have been so uplifting. It's such a blessing and honor to know how much my friends, family and even acquaintances really do care about the welfare of my children and family.

Until next time, HB

Sunday, February 22, 2009

911...What's Your Emergency?

Me: "I have a 3 1/2 year old male in respiratory distress. He is having severe trouble breathing and turning blue around the lips and nose, Can you please send an ambulance right away?"

Dispatcher: "Hold please"....1/2 second later, "What is your address, mam..."
10 minutes later, EMT's arrive and we are headed to the Pediatric ER.

1:30 AM, I was in my sewing room, still dressed and not asleep because I was restless. I was surfing the web, had posted a recipe on Taste and See. I heard an awful sound from the boys' room. I thought it was BB waking up with a night terror as he does on occasion.

When I walked in, I could tell it was something much worse. He was coughing and wheezing so loudly as an indication he couldn't breathe. He was actually trying to cry and talk to me but obviously couldn't.

I ran him to the kitchen to the refrigerator freezer to get him to breathe in the cold air. But he is so heavy, I couldn't keep him up long enough to do any good. I ran into our bedroom and hollered for JB to come help. He immediately jumped up and ran into the kitchen. I told him to hold BB up to the cold air while I went to get our nebulizer for a breathing treatment.

By the time I had the nebulizer set up, BB had started turning blue around the lips and nose, drooling all over the place while the wheezing and coughing had continued to worsen and he was still trying to cry and talk. I had already called my parents to come over immediately. At this point, I made the critical decision to call 911.

I had gone outside to motion for the rescue and realized it was COLD! We immediately took BB outside for the cold air. After about 1 minute of the cold air, his breathing slightly improved but he was still gasping for air.

Policeman arrived 1st, Rescue from the Fire Department arrived 2nd, and then the ambulance.

When Rescue arrived, they immediately began listening to lungs and monitored his O2 sat. As they were doing this, the EMT's arrived. When the EMT's saw that his O2 sat was 82 and not improving, they stated, "We need to get him to the ER."

We soon left for the only Pediatric ER in the state only about 20 minutes away from your home. (What a blessing). I rode with my mom behind the ambulance while JB rode with BB in ambulance. My sister was behind my mom and me. My dad stayed home with CB, who slept through the whole episode (another blessing).

During the ride to the ER, BB was so calm. I could see him from behind. He was strapped in his car seat and sitting there like a big boy. I was so proud of him for being so calm and cooperative (another blessing) and because of this, his breathing was improving.

We were seen immediately and the ER staff began treatment. After 2 breathing treatments of Racemic Epi, decadron, and chest X-Rays, we were finally released to go home about 5:15 AM. I was very impressed and satisfied with the ER staff. They catered to pediatrics and exhibited the most caring and gentle behavior. This was such a blessing not only to BB, but to me as a momma.

They diagnosed it as a severe croup attack. I am not one to question doctors and respect their decision. But I am not yet fully convinced that it was a croup attack. I think it was a severe asthma attack. Regardless, we will follow up with our pediatrician this week. I want to discuss other concerns about the episode and to get his medical advice and opinion.

There are several reasons, I suspect it was an asthma attack. BB has a history of allergic reactions that have rushed us to the doctor. If you keep up with this blog, than you may remember that we had to rush him to the doctor for a severe case of Urticaria that covered most of his body. This happened 2 days in a row. Both trips resulted in steroid treatment. BB also has terrible reactions to mosquito bites. This, too, has had us in the doctor's office with steroid treatment. His bites turn into cellulites and sometime require steroid treatment to heal.

I have asthma and have experienced the distressing asthma attack. His symptoms were all too familiar to me that early morning. I've only been hospitalized with it once while it has actually be dormant for the past few years.
It may have very well been a severe croup attack, but I've never known the croup to be so severe.
I can't explain the emotions that I have felt these past few days regarding this incident. I finally hit a point Saturday when I was by myself that they just released. I try not to think about the "what if's" too keep from getting so emotional and in all honesty...those "what if's" were not apart of God's plan or will for us. He knew all along what was happening, what would happen and He knows what is going to happen in the life of my family. No need to worry about the "what if's"...they are only "what if's" to us...not God. I realize that as I called 911 for our emergency...none of this was an emergency to God, non of this caught him off-guard as it did me. And that very fact, is the best comfort and peace that passes all understanding that I need.

Aunt Fiffi (my sister, Tiffany) brought BB a Get Well Soon balloon the next day. She also brought CB a Bob the Builder balloon so he wouldn't be left out. I can't thank my family enough being there for me. I am so thankful to have them live so close.

I'll keep you informed on our follow ups and such.
Until then, HB

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Happy Birthday, Abbey!

Today my sweet niece, Abbey, turns 4. BB and CB absolutely adore their cousin and have begun to ask on a daily basis, "Can Abbey come play?"

Abbey is full of life, laughter, and energy. She is so petite but has a personality larger than life.

Happy Birthday, Abbey. We love you!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

My Grocery Deals for the week!

I will be doing some grocery shopping within the next few days, probably Friday because they have got some good Valentine deals for Friday only at Kroger. Be sure to look for coupons from the Sunday paper to see if you can get an even better deal. Remember these are the deals at my nearest stores. I can't vouch for stores in other locations. And of course, there are other deals that some of you would benefit from, but these are what I am after.

Friday Deals only for a Valentine Special:
Motts Apple Juice .99
1/2 gal Kroger OJ .99
Kroger Paper towels 3.99 for 6 rolls
Red Seedless grapes .99 lb

All other deals til next Tues:
Strawberries 1.97 pint
Kroger Bread and buns 1.00
Eggs 1.33
Chef Boyardee Ravioli .88 (for BB's lunch)
Totinos Pizza Rolls 1.25 (I have 3 coupons for .35 off, Kroger doubles that to equal .70 off. I will get 3 bags for 1.65, also another great lunch idea)
General Mills cereal 1.66
Purex Detergent 2.99
Kroger Fruit Snacks 1.00 (great for snack time or to keep on hand when we are running errands)
Kroger Salad Dressing 1.50 (I like to get the FF Italian to marinade my chicken and pork before grilling)
Nabisco 100 Calorie Pack Snacks 2.00 (this is the same price at Wal-Mart but I like the gas points)

Betty Crocker Cake Mix .79
Tide 5.99 (I have $1.00 off coupon. I am also getting some Purex from Kroger...detergent is a good stock item)
Imperial Sugar 4 lb bag 1.49
Brookshires Bread .79
5 lb bag of russet potatoes 2.50

Monday, February 9, 2009

The Grant Gator

$20.00 with $5.00 of each purchase to support the March of Dimes (see details below) This is purchased through Hollypops Monogrammed Gifts.

"During pregnancy every woman has a plan of the way they expect everything to go. At only 34 weeks pregnant my plans completely changed. I was loading the dishwasher when my water broke. Exactly 24 hours later I delivered Grant. His lungs were underdeveloped and he spent the first 10 days of life in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. It was very difficult not being able to hold him or take him home when I was discharged. He is a happy and healthy 2.5 year old now. When he was one year old I had been looking for a new job and a friend told me about a position at the March of Dimes. Not knowing anything about March of Dimes I went to Google and knew when I read the mission statement that this job was for a calling. The mission of the March of Dimes is to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth, and infant mortality. Lung Surfactant helped save the life of my little boy and the research for this was funded by the money raised for the March of Dimes."~Melanie Nixon, Grant's Momma

Melanie is a loyal customer of mine that has become a friend. As you read the above statement by Melanie, they have personally been affected by the need for such an organization as March of Dimes. And in reality, all mothers have benefited from the research and mission of March of Dimes. Your baby may not have been premature or had any birth defects, but if they had, you would have benefited from the research and resources of March of Dimes and most likely wouldn't have even known. Although your child may not have been born prematurely or had birth defects, chances are you know someone who has.

Melanie obviously believes in the mission enough to not only "Walk" for the cause, but she works for the cause in more ways than one. She does this not only for her child but for all babies that are born, whether they are healthy or need the unexpected medical care that March of Dimes supports and researches. I am personally grateful for supporters as Melanie who believes in this enough and cares about other babies enough to ensure that my and your baby can benefit from the mission of March of Dimes that he/she might would need.

When Melanie sent out an email about supporting Grant's Family Team in the upcoming March of Dimes, March for Babies Walk, I felt led to do something. On a personal note, my niece and 2 cousins were born prematurely and spent several weeks in the NICU. It was a reality for me that Abbey, Brennan, and Tanner also benefited from the research and mission of March of Dimes. After praying about what I could do to support Grant's Family Team, the mission of March of Dimes and all babies who need and will need March of Dimes, I decided to create a t-shirt in Grant's honor.

Since I can't use March of Dimes' logo, I worked with Melanie to create a t-shirt that represents Grant. She told me that he likes alligators and tractors. I searched the web for a cute alligator and found what I thought to be the perfect one. With Melanie's approval, the t-shirt above is what we created. I can make a pink alligator for girls if you don't prefer the lime green. I've got a pink one ordered already...I'll post that pic when available.

The Grant Alligator t-shirt cost $20.00. $5.00 of each sale will go to Grant's Family Team in support of March of Dimes. They will be participating in the March for Babies Walk, May 9, 2009. If interested in participating in this walk, click the highlighted phrase for more info.

Details about the shirt:
Short sleeves only
White only
Sizes 6M to Youth sizes

Fabric Choices: Lime green polka dot, lime green gingham, hot pink polka dot, pink gingham


Friday, February 6, 2009

Decisions, Decisions

If you are a breathing being, then you know that life consists of decisions from as young as a toddler to the time you are no longer breathing.

My boys are already making decisions: vanilla pudding or chocolate pudding...Candy Land or Memory...Bob the Builder or Handy Manny...Do you want to go to your room or do you want to obey me? Though, these decisions can be very difficult and very important in their innocent worlds...I only wish the decisions that JB and I have to make for our boys were this easy, unchallenged with no certain circumstances.

It is time for next year's pre-school registration. Yes, although it's only February, we aren't even through with this year and the next school year doesn't start until August...we must now make decisions that can possibly effect them as far in the future as a few years from now. Where do we send them? Do we keep them where they are now? How many days do we send...2, 3, 4, or 5? What can we afford? And is the option we choose good enough?

These decisions have to be made on so many different levels of circumstances. Next year's pre-school is their last year before entering K5. And this is a big deal!

Our dilemma in this decision rests on 3 main issues: cost, preparedness and what is best for our boys. As parents, JB and I want our boys to be as prepared for K5 as best as possible, but to do this to it's fullest capacity is very costly, especially having 2 children in a tuition based preschool. One of the reasons, I have been a stay home mom is that it was more costly for me to send 2 children to daycare than what my salary was. (Remember, I was a social worker for a non-profit residential home for abused and neglected children. I loved my job and working anywhere else was not an option as that job was more of a ministry to me and not a job based on salary alone).

We are having to decide how many days we can afford and if that many days is enough to prepare them for K5. I personally don't feel that the 2 days they are currently going is enough to prepare them as they will be the youngest in their class and males, at that. Also, other than this past year, they have not been exposed to any other structured, educational program. However, more days requires more money.

JB and I are prematurely deciding to hold them back to repeat K5 so that they will not be the youngest and to keep them from possibly struggling their way through school. I have talked with an Elementary School Counselor who agreed with our decision and highly recommends it for children in the same situation as my boys, especially since boys mature slower than girls which can affect their confidence, education, and self-esteem during school furthermore effecting them throughout their life. Although, this decision doesn't have to be made until after their 1st year of K5, what we decide about next year's pre-school can effect this future decision. (However, I am not recommending this for your child nor am I assuming that if you don't make the same decisions as we, you are wrong. You have to make your own decision for what is best for your family. I am speaking for my children and family only.)

I welcome any suggestions or experiences from any readers as we prayerfully make these decisions for our boys.

“It is always thus, impelled by a state of mind which is destined not to last, that we make our irrevocable decisions”~Marcel Proust

Until next time, HB

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Quirky Me # 1: Movie Theater Issues

If you have a Facebook profile then you will know that there is a post that has been circulating inviting you to list 25 random facts and goals about yourself. This post has seem to make it's way to every profile on Facebook, even I participated.

I thought it was fun to do as I had to stop and really think about myself and what I thought people would find interesting about me. I, instead, was the one that found myself interesting. I listed things that I had posted before and some that I had not because I either didn't recall them or didn't think it interesting.

So, in this post and upcoming posts, I thought I would list some "quirky" or interesting facts about myself, some I listed on Facebook and some I didn't. Only through these posts I can elaborate more.

# 1 I do not like to watch movies at the theater.

I get too easily distracted by anyone making noise or talking, especially if there are alot of tweens or teenagers in there getting their "chat on" while the movie is showing. I can't stand for people to come in late and asking everyone on a row to move down or they stepping on my feet to get to a seat. I can't stand to have someone else's feet on my chair and near 'bout on my head. The price of a movie is too high to not enjoy it.

My most aggravating time at the movies was when this young mother brought her infant. The child cried and wouldn't be consoled. It finally took an usher to ask her to leave well an hour into the movie. I was just before leaving and asking for my money back.

I would much prefer renting or Pay Per Viewing a movie. I can be home in my comfortable clothes, on my couch, eating my cheaper popcorn.

Apparently I am not alone with this issue. I found this site that discussed "Theater Issues". I read a few comments that were posted and found myself comically relating.

Now, if I can just get caught up with all the movies I have missed,