Message From Under the Blankets

You ever have one of those days when all you want to do is crawl back into bed and stay there for about a week? That's me today.

I didn't realize how much the stress from Isaac's surgery took out of me. Then, even with the relief of having the surgery go FABULOUSLY, helping him during recovery took extra energy. Especially when his energy was "sky rocket high" and he wanted to run, jump, and play like the surgery never happened. Holy guacamole - trying to get him to rest and be calm was the most exhausting thing ever.

Tuesday he got the all clear from the surgeon so he could return to school - no physical restrictions, he was good to go. And let me tell you, he was one very happy boy! Wednesday he went back to school and has been thrilled to be with his friends. He's even been happy to do school work.

Sounds like everything should be happy and on the up-swing, right?

Unfortunately, poor Anna's double ear infections flared back up Wednesday. She was put on a new set of antibiotics. But Wednesday night, her fever spiked and she was one cranky girl. We were up until 4:30 AM and even after that she was up about every half hour or so.

Of course, there's no rest for weary moms. So I got up Thursday and did everything that needed done. That evening I was ready to drop into bed. But I forgot about a board meeting and was up until 10:30 PM on a conference call - which believe me is totally fine. I'm not complaining about that at all. A little after 11, I finally tumbled into bed . . . Blessed sleep. Only the "sleep" part was interrupted by a fussy Anna and then Rob fell out of bed and onto his Legos he refused to clean up that evening. (Sidenote: Dad sleeps through it all. That man would probably sleep through the tornado sirens, too!)

Conclusion: Today, I am one tired chick. Emphasis on tired.

But it's still been a good day. Anna took a nap and I had my girlfriends over for a little surprise birthday lunch for Amy. And yes, Amy was surprised. It was fun to sit around and chat while the kids played. I love spending time with Laura, Amy, and Hillary. They are such awesome women and fun, sassy girlfriends.

Now the kids are back from school and planning games for a family fun fair. A great way to kick off the weekend, don't you think?

And while I plan to have fun, I'm also watching the clock for those magic numbers to roll around . . . 7:30 PM. Kiddy bedtime. I think tonight, Mama's gonna join them. I can't wait to climb into bed and snuggle deep under the blankets . . . and hopefully not emerge until late Saturday morning!

Crazy, But True

I love my friends. You're all so awesome. Especially for putting up with my quirkiness. I love that we can all be "crazy" together.

Latter-Day Bride Semi-Annual Sale

Looking for a modest wedding gown, bridesmaid dresses, or prom gowns?

Be sure to go over and check out Latter-Day Bride's semi-annual Sample Sale. All in-stock gowns are on sale and those that were used as samples for display, etc are deeply discounted. Prices start at $49! Check out their website for locations or online shopping.

Book Review: Lemon Tart by Josi S. Kilpack

From the back cover of Lemon Tart:
A Recipe For Murder
5 families living on Peregrine Circle
1 flowered curtain tieback
1 missing child
1 body in the field

Mix with a long list of suspects and top with two very different detectives. Increase heat until only the truth remains.
Cooking afectionado-turned-amateur detective, Sadie Hoffmiller, tries to solve the murder of Anne Lemmon, her beautiful young neighbor-a single mother who was mysteriously killed while a lemon tart was baking in her oven. At the heart of Sadie’s search is Anne’s missing two-year-old son, Trevor. Whoever took the child must be the murderer, but Sadie is certain that the police are looking at all the wrong suspects-including her!

Armed with a handful of her very best culinary masterpieces, Sadie is determined to bake her way to proving her innocence, rescuing Trevor, and finding out exactly who had a motive for murder.

I absolutely love Josi Kilpack's books. Way back when her first book was published in 2001, I became a die-hard fan (not in a stalker kind of way though - I promise). Then I met Josi at an LDS Storymakers conference and after getting to know her, she became not just someone I was in awe of (and yes, slightly envious of), but she became a real person and a wonderful friend.

Josi's newest book, Lemon Tart, is totally different from all her other books. Not only is it a culinary mystery - whereas all her previous books have been Women's fiction novels dealing with issues that hit you right in the gut and keep you attached to the book until you find out how everything turns out - but it's also the first book that has no mention of the LDS Church. Her main characters have good Christian morales, but no where do they talk about visiting teaching, callings, or other things you typcially expect to find in LDS Fiction. In fact, I'm really surprised it wasn't published under Deseret Book's national market imprint - Shadow Mountain. I think it would be extremely well received by readers all over the U.S. who want a good, clean mystery.

And when I say good mystery, I truly mean Good, with a captial G. After the first, oh maybe five chapters or so, I got really cocky and was totally sure I knew who the murder was and why. But let me tell you, my guess was totally wrong! Josi weaved a whole thread in there that I completely over-looked, and when the plot twisted I just wanted to kick myself in the pants for having missed it! I was so into wanting to solve the mystery, I couldn't put the book down until it was finished. And the massive mess I found around my house after I reached The End is a testament to my reading frenzy!

I enjoyed the mouth-watering recipes Sadie cooked up in the book. I'm really excited to try them out here at home! Some of those recipes include: Sadie's Lemon Tart, Homemade Alfredo Sauce, Carrot Cookies, Brownies, and Granny's Gingerbread Bundt Cake. I'm thinking it's time for a pot luck girls night out!

And the romantic in me is hoping to see more development of Sadie's relationship with a certain dectective in the next book in the series! Hee hee hee.

Now, if you're ready to run out to purchase your very own copy - then get going! But if you can contrain yourself for about a week, check out Anne Bradshaw's blog. She's giving away an autographed copy of Lemon Tart. The contest ends on Wednesday, February 25th. And hey, if I win I'll have an extra copy for a contest, too! Good luck and enjoy this fabulous new book!

QOTC Rating: Five Stars!

Lovin's from Da Sista

My daughter's Activity Days leaders, Sara, emailed me with a totally cute story from when the girls came to "heart" our house. I absolutely loved it and wanted to share.

From Sara:

Hi Danyelle, I just got caught up on your blog. I'm glad everything went well. It is so nice to know that there is a great children's hospital here in KC. I hope Isaac is still recovering quickly and doing well. I have to tell you that MJ was so funny when we hearted your house. I told everyone when we were making the hearts that it was going to be a surprise as to whose house we were going to but that is was someone who needed a little extra love. When we got closer to your house I hear MJ say, "Hey, this is by my house." Then as I pulled into your cul-de-sac I hear MJ get a little more excited and say, "Hey! This is my street. Hey guys, the person lives on my street!" Then when we pulled into your driveway MJ just couldn't contain it any longer. It was so funny. I told the girls we were going to heart MJ's house and then I asked them why and MJ said, "Because of Isaac...I miss him." How cute is that? She is a sweet girl.

Ah, the tears are threatening to flow. Thank you so much for sharing this sweet story, Sara. I hope everyone enjoys a little sisterly love today.

Book Review: An LDS Girl's Guide to Real Beauty by Leslie Cheret

My friend Tristi recently posted on her blog about teaching our daughters to be women. Her post reminded me of an awesome book I purchased for MJ last Novemeber at Time Out for Women. I gave it to her for her 8th birthday.

It's called An LDS Girl's Guide to Real Beauty by Leslie Cheret.

From the Deseret Book website:
A fun and conversational guide to being beautiful inside and out. From self-confidence and discovering your talents to healthy eating, make-up, and exercise, Leslie Cheret will help any girl feel beautiful. Full of thoughts from real LDS girls your age and helpful tips to feeling your best.

My daughter absolutely loves this book. We've been sitting together and reading it one chapter at a time. Many times, she has stopped to ask me more specific questions. In one chapter, the author talks more about what it means to be a real friend - and how friends treat each other. MJ is a very friendly girl and wants to be friends with everyone. But at school, there's one click who has caused her some grief. When these girls get together on the playground, they all follow whatever the click's leader tells them to do. There are about four girls in the group. The hard thing for MJ is that she's friends with several of the girls in the group. When she's with the girls and the leader isn't around, they have a wonderful time together. But when the leader is there, she (the leader) makes all the girls walk away from MJ. It's not just MJ who they "ignore," it's all the girls. MJ asked me lots of questions about this specific situation, but a few others as well. Like what to do when someone makes fun of someone else. We talked a lot about how we're all children of God, and no matter what church we go to, we need to treat everyone with respect.

This book has been excellent for bringing up topics and letting my daughter ask me questions that lead into wonderful conversations and teaching moments. I'm very impressed with this author. She's fun and humorous, and also very honest and loving as she talks about topics that are very important to girls who are pre-teen through teen. MJ is in 2nd grade and I've been shocked by the things I've seen and heard happening between the girls or girls and boys that I wouldn't have expected until at least 6th or 7th grade. I think the timing of this book is perfect for those of us raising girls in this generation. I highly, highly recommend this book.

QOTC Rating: Five HUGE Stars!

Psst - I haven't read it yet, but this author has another book called An LDS Girl's Guide to Friendship. That's definitely going to be the next one I purchase!

Hospital Pictures

First let me say . . . Happy Birthday, Anna!!!

As promised, here are the pics from our stay at Children's Mercy. I hadn't realized we'd taken so few pictures. We didn't get pics with any visitors other than my Dad right before he left. Sorry to all our friends who came by to spend time with Isaac!

We were in the Hippo room. This is Isaac hugging his bear.

Isaac looking a little apprehensive about the upcoming surgery.

John & Isaac playing Nintendo DS games against each other as we wait . . .

I loved this pic in the room we were waiting in.
There are many, many, many days I feel just like this Mama Elephant.

The day after the surgery. Just before we got rid of the nasal oxygen thing.

Pappy and Isaac

Ooh - A present from Pappy.

Power Miners & DS Styluses from Pappy!
By the time Isaac came home, he had several different Lego sets he received
from his friends who visited. He was very exited and loved building & playing with them.

Yummy tacos.
Isaac asked for tacos for dinner every night we were there.
He also had hamburgers for lunch each day as well. :)

The KU Med students came for a Valentine Card activity one evening with the kids.
It was really fun and the guy helping Isaac was fantastic!

Isn't Isaac sweet? He made a Valentine's Card for his sister!

Isaac won a prize! He chose a monkey like on Mario Kart.
Ironically, he named him Mario the Monkey.

Therapy dogs came for one of the evening activities. Isaac absolutely loved Bella.
She's 1 1/2 years old and such a mild tempered, sweet dog.

Isaac and Bella the Beagle

Isaac and one of his favorite nurses, Jessica. She was awesome!

The one thing Isaac begged to do every day was go down to the play room
to play Mario Kart Doubles. He loved it.
He especially loved kicking Mommy's tush. It was quite embarrassing.

It was so fun to come home and find our front door all decorated by
our daughter MJ and her Activity Days group. Thank you!!!

We love you guys, too!

Here is a slightly boring, but fun video of John & Isaac dueling each other on the Nintendo DS while we waited for his surgery. At least it kept Isaac occupied.

Thank you so much to everyone for their love, faith, and prayers. You were each such a blessing for Isaac and our family. Much love to you all!

There's No Place Like Home

Yes, we're home again. And I can't tell you how good that feels. It's like taking a fresh loaf of bread out of the oven, then smothering it with honey-butter and letting your taste buds experience a little slice of heaven.

Home is definitely heaven to me.

We actually came home Friday about lunch time. Thursday night, Isaac finally hit 22cc of drained fluids in a 24 hour period. So Friday morning, the surgeon's team came in, removed the drainage tube from his lung (which went about as good as it could), then told us we could go home.

I was surprised. "I thought we had to stay 24 hours, then have a chest x-ray?" I asked.

The surgeon replied that with all the extra draining Isaac did and with how great his lungs sound that they were confident he would be fine to go home. I asked a few more questions, but he assured me all was fine and we could go home.

So I called my hubby. And found out it was the first round of lay-offs at Sprint. It was mandatory for everyone in his department to be on campus from 10 am to 4 pm. Yuck. Not good news. Especially since John had my GPS unit and let's just say I'm directionally challenged.

Unrelated funny story about being directionally challenged - When I first moved to Utah, I got lost trying to find my apartment building. I stopped to ask for directions. Everyone kept saying go North, West, or whatever and I swear I looked at them like they were talking a foreign language. It's not like I had a compass stashed in my car. What way was I supposed to turn? Then someone told me to head towards the mountains. What? There are mountains on both sides of the valley, which is why it's called a valley. Then they said to head towards the big mountains. OK - I'm from the Alleghenies in PA, and compared to those beautiful rolling mountains, the ones in Utah are mammoth. So I said, "They're all big." At this point, the people giving me directions were rolling their eyes at me. I just got back into my car and drove around until I found someone who gave directions like a normal person, and finally arrived back at my apartment complex. Yep. I'm directionally challenged.

Anyway, back to coming home. :)

I was lucky enough that Isaac's autism specialists found out we were coming home and what was happening and came to the rescue. Can I just say that Todd & Jill are totally awesome? I am so grateful that Isaac has such incredible people in his life. To make a long story short, Todd came up and played video games with Isaac while I packed the room. He helped us get loaded into our car, then we met up again outside of the parking garage and he led me back to the freeway. Whew! There's no way I would have made it on my own without stopping to ask for directions . . . somewhere. I have no idea where I would have stopped. A big, strange city isn't my ideal location for being lost. But then again, I guess it's better than being in the middle of farm central with no one around to ask, then running out of gas. Hmm . . . maybe I'll have to write a story about that.

By the time we got back to Olathe and dropped off Isaac's pain med prescription, it was lunchtime. So we made a McSonic run (McD's & Sonic are right next to each other near our house), then finally pulled into our garage. I told Isaac to go ahead and go in while I unloaded the car, then we'd have lunch. After a few trips, I went to check on him and found him laying on his bed, half asleep. I guess he was happy to be home, too.

We spent the remainder of the day resting and catching up on mail, etc. John finally did get to come home - and yes, we survived the first round of lay-offs. Round #2 is on March 13th, so we'll see how we do then. Our friend, Chris Wofford, brought us dinner last night, with some totally incredible homemade Ginger Snaps. I definitely need to get that recipe.

As you can see from my rambling, I'm in the process of de-stressing and much more chatty today than I have been all week. It's nice to see Isaac happy, relaxed, and much more comfortable. Big sigh of relief. I will post pictures from our stay later this weekend.

I hope you are all doing well. And btw -

Happy Valentine's Day!!!

And Happy Birthday Wishes to my brother Harry & my friend Teri.

Update on Tuesday Night & Wednesday

Since John went back to work on Wednesday, I haven't had access to his laptop. I knew there were computers here I could use, but I didn't want to leave Isaac long enough to access them. What I didn't know was that the hospital has laptops they keep charged for parents to use for 15-20 minutes at a time in their room. Isn't that awesome? So, here I am - finally giving you an update.

Tuesday night was really difficult for Isaac. After having a fabulous day, he went to sleep at 11 pm. Unfortunately, his nurse decided since he was sleeping, not to give him his pain meds. At 4 am, he woke up in LOTS of pain. He thrashed around a bit and ended up pulling his IV out of his hand. The nurse didn't want to start another IV since he was so upset, and opted to order oral pain meds - which took another 30 minutes to get and another 20-30 minutes after that to kick in. Isaac was so upset, all he kept saying was "Mommy, take me home". It just about broke my heart. I ended up sleeping in bed with him cuddled up to me for the rest of the night. Thank goodness we could both fit on his bed. :)

Wednesday was a great day. Truly, Isaac is back to his normal, cheerful, active personality. He still needs pain meds to control the pain. Right now we're just waiting for his lung drainage to get down to less than 25 cc in a 24 hour period. Wednesday, he was sitting at between 70-80 cc. The bulb that catches the fluid gets drained every four hours. When they drain it, they calculate the amount of fluid for the past 24 hours from that drainage time. So Wednesday morning, he was still draining too much fluid to have the tube removed. By the afternoon though, the drainage had finally started tapering off and this morning he was sitting at 30 cc. The surgeon team said they would keep an eye on it today. Hopefully either later today or tomorrow morning, the drainage will decrease enough for the tube to be removed. Once it's removed, we'll need to stay for another 24 hours, then Isaac will have a chest x-ray to make sure the fluid levels and lung look okay.

Other than that, Isaac is doing great with his respiratory exercises and his lung sounds really good. He's had several visitors - Mr. Todd & Miss Jill from school, Sister Broyles came up with our son Rob, and Sister Lyons & Sister Stotts from the Primary organization at church. He really enjoyed seeing someone other than Mom and Dad . . . and of course, he was really excited about the presents they all brought, too. :)

I went home last night to spend the night at home with the kids. John stayed at over-night with Isaac. Anna was soo happy to see Mom. She kept hugging me over and over. I was worried she'd be upset about being separated again today, but instead she was very excited to see Natalie and just hopped right into their van for the day. What a great blessing that was. I don't think I could have handled her crying and calling for Mommy. It was really nice to be home and to just snuggle and relax with the kids.

This morning when I returned, Isaac gave me a great big hug. I told him I brought him something from home. He was really excited until he saw that it was homework. "No!" he said. "No homework!" Then I pulled out the cool coloring books and crayons I brought and he agreed it would be okay to work in shifts. Some work and some play. He's such a great kid.

Thank you everyone for all your prayers. Isaac is doing fabulous and I truly believe it's because of the faith and love each of you are sending his way. Last night on the way home, Lean On Me came on the radio not once, but twice. Then again this morning when I turned on the radio, it was the first song that came on. It clicked in my head that it was a message from Heavenly Father. Have you listened - really listened - to the verses from that song lately? It touched my heart and made me think of each of you and my Heavenly Father. Google the verses. Thank you so much for being a part of our lives.

I will try to update again later today. Much love to you all.

Two Tubes Down . . .

. . . Several more to go.

Last night was rough for Isaac. Every time he became even the slightest bit uncomfortable, he was given some more pain meds. He slept on and off. The most difficult parts for him were trying to go to the bathroom and waking up to an unfamiliar room.

The first time he got up and tried to go to the bathroom, he became really upset because he had a very, very full bladder. Of course, the more upset he became, the more he couldn't relax to accomplish his task. So hubby and I sang The Ants Go Marching to him. When we got to The ants to marching three by three - we changed the verse a bit to The littlest one stopped to take a pee. :) Isaac thought that was pretty darn funny. I'm glad he's been able to keep a bit of his sense of humor through this difficult time.

Each time Isaac woke up, he'd call for me. I'd sit beside him and he'd pull my face close to his, then run his fingers through my hair and his hand down my cheek. I could really tell he was still quite goofy from the anesthesia and pain meds, and he just wanted so mommy love and comfort.

During the night, he did a great job with drinking apple juice, water, and eating graham crackers and saltines. He kept everything down. His appetite is still pretty small. This morning he only ate about three or four bites of eggs and a few bites off of one triangle of toast. But he did drink all of his juice. Part of the reason he's having a hard time eating is because his throat is sore from the breathing tube that was placed down his throat during the surgery.

Isaac has been doing a great job this morning. He's doing better in the bathroom AND he has two less tubes hooked up to him! The nasal oxygen tube was removed and because he's been doing such a great job drinking juices and water, they hep-locked his IV. No more metal trees following us to the bathroom! Yeah!

Pappy (my Dad) arrived about breakfast time. He's flying back to Pennsylvania today. After breakfast, we "bribed" Isaac into getting out of bed by telling him about the cool Nintendo games down at the playroom. He did a great job walking down and back. Right now, he's resting in bed again - but has already asked when we get to go back to the playroom. This time, he wants to challenge Mommy to a game of Mario Kart Doubles. Racing games tend to make me nauseous, but I figure if Isaac can be such a brave boy, then I can buck up and play the dreaded racing game. :)

Isaac is still hooked up to a drainage tube (to drain fluid from his lungs). He still has lots of fluid that's draining, so that's really good. He has an oxygen and heart rate thing attached to his finger. The IV hep-lock in his hand. And round monitor things stuck to his chest to measure his breathing, heart rate, and lung capacity. (Don't you love my knowledge of medical terms?)

The surgeon said we will probably be here until Thursday, possibly Friday depending on how Isaac does Wednesday. But so far, his nurse has been very impressed with his progress this morning. He really is doing a great job. Right now, Isaac is watching Cartoon Network.

Thank you everyone for you prayers. I know I keep saying that, but your faith and love has been so uplifting to me - and a great blessing as Heavenly Father has blessed our little guy.

A Day Full of Blessings - An Isaac Update

Today has been filled with blessings.

My kids all got off to school and their friends houses and Isaac was actually quite chipper this morning. My sister had an interesting experience this morning. She loves the 700 Club on CBN and is a contributor to their station. This morning, CBN called her to see if she had anyone she would like to add to their prayer list for the day. She told them about Isaac and they prayed for him.

We've been lucky to have many, many people of all different faiths praying for Isaac. Today, many of those prayers were answered.

Isaac's surgery was scheduled for 2 pm, but wasn't taken back until 3 pm. While we waited, he remained in good spirits - challenging his Dad at Mario Cart on Nintendo DS's certainly helped. :) When it was time for surgery, he got a little nervous when it was time to part. But he walked with the nurse to the operation room. An hour later, the nurse called to give us an update. She said he did a great job. He asked lots of questions about the lights and other things in the room. She answered them and he got on the table to get his "sleepy medicine." Just as they were placing the mask over his face, he got scared and started asking for his Mommy. But about ten seconds later, he was asleep.

Another hour later, we received another phone call from the nurse saying that the surgery was completed and they were just sewing everything back up. They were able to perform the surgery using the scope and that the surgeon would be down soon to see us. About thirty minutes later, my hubby and I met with the surgeon.

It turns out that Isaac didn't have a pulmonary sequestration and cystic mass as we thought from the CT Scan. Instead, the surgeon found something very unusual & called another surgeon in to consult. They found a large rectangular section of tissue that was attached from the bottom of his lung to the top of his diaphragm. It was stretched pretty good and obviously inflamed. They did some extra poking around to search for any masses, but everything else looked really good. So they removed the odd tissue and a small piece of his lung. What an incredible blessing to have had it be something so rare, but much less drastic than removing the lower section of his lung! What an incredible answer to the many prayers on his behalf.

Isaac was pretty disoriented after the surgery and just wanted Mom to hold his hand. He even told me he was worried when he couldn't find me when he woke up. He was in and out of sleep for another hour and a half. About 8 pm, he woke up, had an orange popscicle and asked some questions. Then he fell asleep for a little while longer and woke up about 8:30 pm. This time when he woke up, he took my hand and pulled me close to him and said, "God is speaking to me." Then he went on to ask me something that I couldn't process because I was still trying to comprehend his first statement. Then I thought of course God is speaking to Isaac. He loves him so, so much!

At this moment, Isaac is awake and doing fantastic. In fact, he's watching Donald Duck in Math Magic Land!

Thank you so much for all your prayers and love. I will post more again tomorrow!

Peace and An Early Birthday

Today's fast has been an emotional experience for me, but one that has also been accompanied by an overwhelming sense of peace.

After church today, our Elder's Quorum president and one of his counselors joined us to give each member of our family priesthood blessings. It's difficult to express the tenderness of this moment. There have been so many, many worries weighing on my heart and mind - all for my children. I have a difficult time expressing them because it just makes me cry and I don't like to cry in front of anyone. So I've kept most of them all stored up inside. It was interesting as Isaac was blessed, followed by my hubby, myself, and our other three children - that almost all of my worries were addressed. For each child, something I thought would be difficult for him or her, was brought up in his or her blessing. The wording of my blessing was truly inspired because it was so completely accurate to how I was feeling and dealing with everything. What peace and comfort it brings to know Heavenly Father knows each of us and what's in our hearts. It truly was a tender experience for our whole family.

Thank you to everyone who's been praying for our son. And thank you so much to everyone who fasted with us today. Your faith and love are greatly appreciated. There truly are not words adequate to express my deep gratitude for each of you.

Shifting gears a little, next week is our youngest daughter's 2nd birthday. Since we aren't sure what next weekend will be like, we decided to have a last minute family party today. Here are some fun pics to share with you all.

Me and My Girl!

Anna loved her Little People Carnival and Farm sets. She's getting quite the little town collection!
Another favorite was her teeny tiny baby doll. She keep giving it lots of kisses and hugs.

Anna also got some fun clothes.
She loved this shirt and immediately decided it had to be put on OVER her dress!

Isn't she cute?

Ooh! Look, Mommy! It's those awesome panties that make it
so I can lift my skirt up and people don't see my diaper. I LOVE those!

Looky, Mommy - I can put them on all by myself!

And what's this? A skirt that goes with it, too?

Wow! Another skirt, too! Let's see if I can wear my dress,
new shirt, jean skirt with diaper panty, and this skirt, too!

Gasp! New shorts! I have to try these on too, Mommy! Now!

See, I can do it all by myself.

Um, I was wrong. Help! I'm stuck!

Whew! Mommy to the rescue.

Oh yeah. It's all coming together now!

I'm a stylin' queen!
BTW - isn't my new baby so cute?

And to close, a little Anna love for y'all. Have a wonderful evening. And much love to you all.

Surgery Schedule

Children's Mercy Hospital called this morning to let us know the surgery schedule and info.

We will check into the hospital at 12:30 pm at Same Day Surgery. This is when we'll meet with the anesthesiologist and get Isaac all dressed and ready for surgery. Surgery will begin at 2 pm and is scheduled for 3 1/2 hours. So, sometime between 5 to 6 pm, Isaac should be done and we'll get to see him about another half hour after the surgery is completed in the recovery room.

Please say lots of extra prayers for Isaac and Dr. Snyder during this time. I will try to post the results and how Isaac is doing late Monday night.

The Count Down Begins

4 Days to Go . . .

This week has been crazy. I meant to post on Monday, but I've just had so many things on my mind and my to-do list just keeps growing with things to do to prepare for next week. I can't believe the surgery is at our doorstep already. After meeting with our surgeon last month, it seemed like forever before the surgery would actually happen.

Well, it's here.

Last week, we started talking with Isaac about the upcoming surgery. He was really freaked out. Like, curl-up-in-a-ball-crying-on-his-bed freaked out.

Monday I called and scheduled a pre-operation tour at Children's Mercy Downtown. Tuesday night, my hubby & I took Isaac in. It's probably one of the best things we decided to do. Miss Amy showed him everything from checking in at the security gate, where to go, the Same Day Surgery check-in, waiting rooms, etc. We watched a video about all the things that will happen that day and Isaac got to see all the rooms first hand - except the operation room, but we saw that in the video. He asked lots and lots of questions, which Miss Amy was a pro at answering. Then Isaac got to play with all the medical equipment they'd use pre-surgery. He even got to wear the anestesia mask and smell the different flavors he could choose for his "sleeping medicine." He chose banana. Miss Amy sent him home with a doll to color (he made his look like Wow Luigi from Mario Kart), a gown for the doll, bracelet, hair cap cover thingy the docs & nurses wear, face masks, the finger oxigen/heartbeak instrument, band-aides, cotton balls, etc. He's been using them ever since to practice for next week. He doesn't seem to be freaked out anymore - whew!

Now it's just mom (and probably dad, too) who's freaked out. As the day gets closer and closer, I worry about the surgery, Isaac, and how all my other kids are going to do while I'm basically incognito for a week. I'm totally grateful for wonderful friends who've stepped up and volunteered to love & care for my kiddos while we're with Isaac. But still, I'm just worried about not being there for everyone. It's so difficult to be torn between two places at once.

Prayers & Fast for Isaac

I also wanted to thank everyone for their prayers on Isaac's behalf. I am so grateful for every single one of you. Several of you have asked if we will hold a fast for Isaac. My Bishop has organized a fast on Sunday, February 8th - the day before the surgery. I'm sure that hubby & I will be fasting both Sunday and Monday during the surgery. If anyone would like to join us either of those days, we would appreciate it very much. If you're not familiar with fasting, it's when you choose to not partake of usually two meals in a show of faith and sacrifice to Heavenly Father as you pray for something specific. In this case, I'm fasting for guidance for the surgeon and for Isaac to understand what's happening, to not be afraid, to have a safe, successful surgery, and a healthy recovery.

Once again, thank you so much everyone. I will try to keep you updated as much as possible this next week. Check back often. I don't know that I'll have an opportunity to send out emails, but I should get to post details here.

Much love to you all!