Friday, April 3, 2015

Bunny Boys…

Another month means another themed picture for these two little darlings. DSC_0946



Wednesday, April 1, 2015

AB’s Surgery

Back in the Fall, Annabelle had a bump form on the middle knuckle of her pinky finger. We really didn’t think much of it at first, but when weeks passed and it didn’t go away, we decided we needed to mention it to her pediatrician. We were referred to an orthopedic specialists, who decided that the best plan of action was to get it out and send it off for pathology to determine exactly what it was.
This meant a small surgical procedure. I’m using the word “small” loosely, because when it’s your kid going under anesthesia and being cut on, it seems like anything but SMALL.
The specialist we saw, turned out to be the head of the department and was actually the same doctor who did hand surgery on my FIL years ago. He was wonderful with Annabelle.
The surgery was on a Friday, mid-March, and we were scheduled to arrive at the children’s surgical plaza at noon. Annabelle couldn’t have anything to eat or drink past midnight and by 1:00, she was getting really hungry and thirsty. The surgery ended up being at the same place that both of Cooper’s eye surgeries were and of course, it was emotional to be back there again.
My Mom met us at the surgery center and brought AB a prize, of course. It was one of the “smart watches” from V-Tech, and AB has loved it. She plays games on it, but what she loves most is the video camera on it.
We waited for a couple hours and finally around 2:00 they took us back to the pre-op area.
When the nurse came out to get us, I recognized her immediately. She had been the same nurse who was with us for Cooper’s surgery. She had a personality that was unforgettable. What a sweet gift to have her again, and come to find out she is retiring in May. IMG_7331
She was great with AB, too, and totally won her heart when she let her pick a Disney movie to watch. IMG_7334
Our Dr. and the anesthesiologist came over to talk to us and then they gave AB the “loopy juice” which made her sleepy within about 10 minutes. Another surprise came when a friend of mine from elementary school (we’re talking 20+ years ago) was also in the pre-op area and  came over to see us and say hello. There’s something comforting knowing that someone who knows you, is behind the scenes taking care of your child when you can’t be. That made it much easier to watch her get wheeled away when the surgical team came to get her a few minutes later.
The doctor estimated the procedure to last around 75 minutes, so we went out into the atrium to wait. About 15 minutes later, my friend from elementary school, came out to give us an update on how to anesthesia went and to tell us they’d just began the surgery. It was so thoughtful and meant so much. My Dad got there around that time and we all waited until the Dr. came out to tell us it had gone well and that the nurse would come to get us as soon as we were allowed back in the post-op area.
She was eating a popsicle when they brought her out to us and she looked so big and so little at the same time. She was happy to see us all, and was so brave when they took out her IV. It helped tremendously that the tape the nurse used was pink and purple with hearts on it. :)
After a while of post-op observation, they let us take her home. She was still a little loopy from the anesthesia, but she did really well coming out of it.IMG_7343
My parents went and picked up dinner and met us back at our house, after we’d stopped at Pappy & Nie-Nie’s to pick up Maybree & Tucker. (Nie-Nie, too, had a prize for AB- and she was so excited to get the Frozen sing-along radio with a MICROPHONE. Any kids’ toy that comes with a microphone should also come with a mute button. I’m just speaking from experience. Ha.)IMG_7358
AB wearing her new watch and singing Frozen karaoke, hours after her surgery. We had to MAKE HER sit down and take it easy.
The next morning, she woke up at 4:30 ready to start the day. DW & I got up with her, and I was drooling on the couch while he was making her requested slushies (at 4:00 IN.THE.MORNING). We’d watched Big Hero 6 and a couple episodes of Doc McStuffins before the sun had even come up.
She’s got sweet little friends, who were so thoughtful to send some “Get Well” prizes her way. IMG_7595Gummy bears, craft supplies, bubbles, and a big balloon!?!?! All of her favorites!IMG_7590 Allie & Emma (& their mamas are so thoughtful).
AB had to wear her hard cast for two weeks, to keep her incision clean and dry and protected from any bumps that might happen when you’re a kindergartener.
She was glad to get it off when the two weeks was up. IMG_8018
She’s had her post-op appointment and the pathology report came back with great news and it concluded that it was a benign fibroid tumor.
We’re glad that it’s behind us and thankful it was something so minor.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Three Chicks and a couple of Roosters

When your BFF’s have Spring Break a different week than you, there’s nothing else to do but skip a day of school and spend it together.
Carrie and I are both big believers in the importance of education in our children’s lives. That being said, we also believe kids need to be kids…and sometimes that means skipping a day of school to have some fun. :)
Wednesday was an Early Release day, and seemed like a prime time to take a little “field-trip” to the Mizell’s poultry farm.
Carrie’s in-laws have been so sweet to let us come up and take chick pictures for years. It’s a tradition seven years strong, with only one year being skipped.
My crew headed out EARLY Wednesday morning. We strapped all five kids into Carrie’s van and set out for the two hour drive. IMG_8185We pulled up to the farm a little after 9:00 and I was seriously impressed with our togetherness that day…even if it meant neither of us packed anything for the kids to sit on for the pictures. The very first year we had baskets and props and took a million poses of our baby girls…that’s all kind of changed as the years have gone by and the number of kids has increased. :) These days, we consider it a win to have all the kids in the picture, with clothes on and clean noses. DSC_0647
We lucked out and our clothes actually coordinated on their own this year. This was a total strike of luck, since this was kind of last minute and neither of us planned what our kids would wear until the night before. (& I had my mom run to the store that night to find Tuckey a shirt that would go with the girls’ dresses) :)
We grabbed the chicks and then scouted out something for the kids to sit on. We contemplated using some wooden pallets, but couldn’t fit them in Carrie’s van – but we did manage to get a couple of yellow chicken crates in the back and I LOVE they way they look in the pictures. DSC_0670
How cute is this bunch?
DSC_0698I think this year’s pictures are my favorite so far.
This big shot “drove” us around the operation and reported on every tractor and piece of equipment he saw along the way. IMG_8325He’s such a character and one of my all-time favorite little boys.
This was Tucker’s first dealings with baby chicks and he didn’t really know what to think…DSC_0853
However, he was excited to see some cows on the Mizell farm…  IMG_8189
Annabelle has always been a little skittish of the chicks, too. She was terrified as a baby and while she will hold them now, she’s still half scared. I laughed that she’s still making that scared face seven years later…IMG_8352
Mamie jumped right in, and was a ‘ol pro as she helped Allie (who’s been a chick whisperer since before she could even crawl) load up the biddies. IMG_8276
After pictures at the farm, Carrie suggested a new place they’d been to in Jacksonville for lunch. IMG_8366Sweet Pete’s & the Candy Apple CafĂ© was a great spot for lunch and the promise of getting to chose their own candy after lunch was a great incentive for the kids. :)  IMG_8386We had lunch on the porch and then ventured up stairs to the sweet shop. IMG_8391My girls were in gummy bear paradise. They each chose candy for the bags and then we went up to the observation desk to see Pete and his crew working on new confections. IMG_8401
It was a great day from beginning to end. IMG_8409

Friday, March 20, 2015

Kindergarten Program


Annabelle’s Kindergarten program at the beginning of March was so adorable.11018325_623515334449796_3966137933714567290_n It was about bugs and each class was a different one with a song and dance. Our class were the Fireflies. IMG_6823

AB’s teacher had asked me a few weeks before if I’d make their wings for the program. I jumped at the chance to help and then called in back up. :)  I had a picture in my mind and my parents helped me figure out how to pull it all together. Everyone needs a Grammy & Pop. :) IMG_6685

Our girl had a speaking part, which we’d been practicing for weeks. It was one line and everyone in our family knew it by heart. ;)   “…And let’s travel in a row!”

She did a great job. It takes a lot to be cuter than a bunch of kindergarteners with lisps and missing teeth talking in microphones. (These pics are from the afternoon performance, that Nie-Nie took)11052373_623514977783165_3710676696949343948_n

Everyone went over to the cafeteria to see AB after the performance that night.


with Uncle Adam, Nen & Parker (who wondered what those things on her back were!)


with Grammy (Pop was on a work trip)


with Pappy (Nie-Nie & Kels made it to the afternoon show)


& with her super proud Daddy, Momma, & little Sister (& baby brother, who like Parker, was confused by the whole wing thing) :)

Such sweetness. Precious times for sure.


Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Kiss Me, I’m Irish….


The baby boys found themselves in a sea of green glittery shamrocks and gold coins this St. Patrick’s Day!



Parker was so taken by the leprechaun-loot that we think he forgot he could crawl and he sat still for about ten minutes! DSC_0377

He was double fisting, and was sweet to even offer Tuckey a bite…DSC_0422

Tucker was busy seeing how much green glitter he could get off the shamrocks and onto his teeth. DSC_0558

and collecting gold coins…DSC_0380

for TASTING, of course!


Their little shirts said it all… and to be quite honest, none of us need an invitation to kiss on our littlest lovies, even when their faces are covered in green glitter!



Especially these two big sisters… DSC_0567

Mamie is always saying, “I got all your, sugar, Tuckey-Boy!”DSC_0577

DSC_0585They’re the pot of gold at the end of this momma’s rainbow.