30 November 2009

Christmas Tree!

On Saturday we picked out the tree. We went up to Santa Cruz mountains to a farm higher than we're used to. It was very windy and cold, so the kids wrapped themselves up in whatever we had in the car. It was fun, but Abigail kept telling us to hurry up and cut down the tree (any tree) so we could get out of there. Of course, Laura picked the perfect tree - almost too big for our place, but not quite.
From Christmastime 2009
Laura and I brought it in on Sunday, and we started decorating with the kids. They didn't want to go to sleep, but we promised FHE would be spent finishing it up. We finished up decorating the tree and house tonight, ending with a lesson on the nativity for FHE (good talk about what a 'manger' is) and ice cream for dessert.
From Christmastime 2009

11 November 2009

In the end

We are so glad that Ben is home safe and happy. He is doing great today. He ate a TON of food when we came home from the hospital last night. He ate four eggs with cheese melted on in just a few minutes. He has only complained about a soar throat 3 times that I know of since he's been home.

When the Dr came out to talk to us after surgery she said his tonsils and adenoids were huge and very infected. She said there was puss oozing out of them. Yuck. Gross. I talked to her on the phone today when she called to check up on Ben and she said that of all the tonsils she removed yesterday in children (which were apparently many) she said Ben's were the biggest and he was by far the youngest kid. Poor kid.

They also put tubes back in his ears. He had tubes put in when he was 7 months old. Which is pretty young for tubes. They had fallen out within the last 6 months or so. The ENT yesterday took a look at his ears, removed all the wax build up, removed the old tubes that had fallen out and were just sitting in the ear canal, suctioned out tons of fluid that had built up in his middle ear also known as "glue ear" and put in new tubes. It's like Ben got a shiny new car wash for his ears. Aahhh, sounds nice.

So all in all, I'm so glad we did it. Thanks to you all for your support and thoughts and prayers. And here's to hoping for some great things to come for Ben in about a month (the time it takes for full recovery).

10 November 2009

Benjamin Post Op

Benjamin 'smiles' post operation. He woke up pretty upset, but has clamed down, even laughed at some home movies. He had a small can of apple juice and has started on his second. He is still complaining about the port in his hand. And he said he's too scared to fall asleep.

Just Prior to Surgery

Benjamin just prior to surgery. See how skinny he is? We hope this will be corrected.

09 November 2009

Say a prayer and cross your fingers (whichever you prefer to do)

Tomorrow at 6:30am we are taking Ben over to Kaiser to get his tonsils and adenoids taken out. I'm excited. I'm nervous. I'm hopeful, mostly. It's no secret that Ben is a small kid. Joel and I often say it feels like we're going to brake him when we pick him up. He's so skinny. Sooooo skinny. We've always attributed it to the many health problems he had (see many of the posts back in 2008). He had reflux really badly and had chronic upper respiratory infections. The pediatrician told me it would take awhile for him to catch up in size since he was stunted in his growth for so long. Knowing that, I was piecing some bits of information together about Ben. Often times, when he's asleep at night, I can hear him snoring all the way from his room, with the door closed, to our family room. Also, he does that stop breathing for 7-10 seconds at a time then takes a big gasp and falls back asleep. That, along with his low weight, always enlarged lymph nodes (see pictures below), and being a chronic mouth breather made me ask the pediatrician for a referral to an ENT.

When I went in to meet with the ENT the first thing she did was ask me how long his lymph nodes have looked like that. When I said 6 months she responded with, "why are just in here now?" I went on to talk about the other issues; his history, a voice recording of him sleeping, and her visual assessment of Ben quickly led to the conclusion that he needs his tonsils and adenoids removed. She said it *should* help with many of his health issues. Kids who need their tonsils and adenoids removed often has chronic upper respiratory infections because their tonsils and adenoids are simply a house for bacteria to hang out in. Therefore, his lymph nodes are always swollen in a meek attempt to fight the ever present bacteria in his mouth. Kids who need them removed are often mouth breathers because his adenoids (which sit behind the nostrils in the nasal passage) are enlarged and make it difficult to breath through the nose. Also, kids who need them out have sleep apnea and have problems gaining weight and growing normally because the Human Growth Hormone is released during deep sleep. Ben never gets to deep sleep because he body is consistently waking him up to breath.

So, I'm excited that this one, semi simple procedure, has the potential to really help Ben. Maybe he won't be sick as much. Maybe he'll finally grow and gain some weight. Maybe he'll get quality sleep at night. Maybe his lymph nodes will finally go down in size. Maybe...

However, it is a procedure that requires anesthesia and that makes me nervous. He's had it before and did "fine" with it so I know he doesn't have a reaction to it. But still, some one is in charge of making sure my son wakes up from a very very deep sleep so to speak. That is scary. Also, he is going to be in some pain. It's going to be one serious sore throat. So, say a prayer or cross your fingers for Ben tomorrow. I'll give an update after all is done.

Not sure if you can tell~ it seems so obvious to me~ but on either side of his larynx are huge bulges. Those are his swollen lymph nodes.

Another view~ the bulge right below his ear lobe.

And just because Ben specifically asked me to take a picture of him and Gabriel. Too cute these boys!

08 November 2009

Abigail Gets More Teeth

Laura discovered that Abigail is getting here adult (ugh, I can't believe that wors can be connected to Abigail) teeth. Look closely you can see them behind her baby teeth (see arrow).

This discovery came at Church when Abigail saw that Truman had some new teeth. Abigail asked Laura when she was going to get new teeth. Laura decided to 'check' and was shocked to see the teeth coming in. Someone nearby had mentioned the same thing had happened to their child. They found out that it's no big deal. You just have to wiggle the front teeth until they fall out, and the adult ones will move forward.

In other news, I had this conversation with Benjamin while I was trying to get him out the door and into the car:

Ben: I want juice.
Me: Why?
Ben: For fun! [Ben starts to dance]

He's a pretty funny kid.

07 November 2009

At the Park

Saturday activities with the kids.

05 November 2009

Halloween kids

Here are three of the kids getting ready for trick or treating. I
loved all their costumes.