Wednesday, February 19, 2014

double digits! You're ten months old, Cora!

We love you so much!  You are a treasure and a joy!

It has been a really big month and you have been so amazing!  From hours and hours of traction to surgery to the spica cast, you have shown us how it is done with grace!  

You have really taken a leap this month where eating solids is concerned.  I love to watch you eat.  You can attack a whole apple and delicately pick up peas, cheerios and raisins or currants one at a time and pop them in your mouth.  

You love your Nana!  

We were blessed with a bunch of hand me downs and that has been a lot of fun.  

You like going to the library and hanging out with Mama and Brother and you really like attention from your Daddy! 

You like to play with your Ducca and when we were at their house this day you chowed down on roast beef till I thought you wouldn't have any room left!  

You love to sing "God Made the Big Round Sun"  (your favorite part is the birds that fly) and "If You're Happy and You Know It".  You clap at the appropriate places and it just amazes me. 

You got to go with Mama to a baby blessing for one of your little friends and you were prayed over by our prayer sisters group when they found out about your hip displasia.  You were mesmerized by all of them and the attention.  

People constantly comment on how smiley you are and complete strangers tell us how cute and how pretty you are.  You have a way of making people love you.  

You are very persistent and intent and that's one of the many things I love about you.  

You also drink really well out of an open cup.  It is lots of fun to watch you.  

You learned to wave bye bye!

You love to be outside especially if it's windy and you like hiking with us.  

You talk a lot!!  Da da da da da da and we think you say brother too.

You guys are pals for sure!

You love to sit up and play with toys and you have adapted to the cast really well.  I feel bad for you but you will just lay on your back and play since you can't sit up on your own.  

You are really good at one finger and you have begun turning pages of books.  You love when Mama lets you get your hands on a real book.  You also can sit and turn the pages of the cloth book from Great Grandma over and over and over for quite a while.  It is adorable.  

Daddy and I LOVE your hair!  It is so pretty and you are getting so much of it!  

Traction was really hard but we made it through and it was worth it because your hip popped right into place during surgery.  

Cutie pie!  

You are not pulling yourself up yet (quite possibly because of your hip) but you were happy to stand for a few minutes to pose for pictures. 

Your brother loves you very much.  

And you love him!  You get giddy when you see him.  It's really cute!  

As we approached the surgery date (and then the rescheduled surgery date since our surgeon got sick and your original surgery got cancelled minutes before we walked out the door) you came closer and closer to crawling!

cutest little sister ever!

love that tongue that's always out

You've got your two little teeth on the bottom.  

pretty impressed with yourself getting brother's truck 
(photo through the baby gate)

You LOVE the robot vacuum cleaner and are mesmerized watching it.   Sometimes when you are fussy in the late afternoon I will turn it on just so you are happy.  

and getting up on all fours!

You learned to crawl the night before your surgery!  It felt like a gift and was oh so very fun to watch!  Can't wait to see you crawling again sweet girl!  

We will make it through this cast business but Mama is certainly counting down the days!

love you, Cora! 


Sunday, February 9, 2014

Family Valentine's Dinner Last Year

I didn't blog about this last year so I thought I'd just put it in here.  My parents hosted all of us for a family Valentine's dinner (and also offered nights of baby-sitting so the couples could go out later if we wanted!).  

Isn't that cute how my sister-in-law cut the beets into hearts? 

That girl is detailed with food I tell you.  She has more patience than I in that area and I love that she does these special things.  

Handsome fella

My parents provided meat and rolls and we all contributed red/Valentine's foods.  

cutie button

pretty heart cookies that my mom made

My mom knows how to throw a party and the boys (well, all of us really) had so much fun!

Wish I had gotten more people pictures, especially of my other nephew Aaron so we could see how they've all grown in a year.

Are you doing anything special for Valentine's Day this year?


Wednesday, February 5, 2014

one week down!

We have made it one whole week in the cast!!!!!!

Only 5-7 left to go!

We only have as long left in the cast as December 12th was ago.

December 12th - our church's women's annual sock exchange party, MOPS Christmas brunch

To be honest those things do still feel kind of like a long time ago BUT we are making it little by little!!

God is so gracious in seeing us through each and every moment.  

I think I have even gone two whole days without an "I hate the cast!!!" moment in my mind. 

Cora is doing really, really awesome!  

This is her first time to wear a nightgown instead of footie jammies!  Such a big girl!!  (Well, a big girl nightgown not a newborn gown.)

When she eats I tie one of my aprons above the cast to keep any food from falling down in there.  So far so good!  I've only found one Ritz cracker crumb and one homemade (by our friend Donna) tortilla chip crumb!  Yippee!

If you know us well you might just know that food is our love language and boy oh boy are we being SPOILED by wonderful, wonderful friends!  Kind and generous people are not only cooking delicious meals for us (and even bringing yummy desserts - dairy and egg free - not an easy feat!) but delivering them in COLD snowy weather!  So humbling and a gesture we do not take for granted!  Cora is enjoying some super good chicken here.  It is neat because David is starting to understand that it is a gift that people are blessing us with food and we have talked about how we can show kindness to people by taking them food.  It is neat to see him learning.  

One of the biggest hurdles I feel we've yet to overcome is clothes.  This is the only thing I've found in our vast wardrobe so far that keeps her diaper and the duct tape around the diaper area of the cast that holds the waterproof tape on from showing.  I am not really wanting to take her out in public with all of that showing.  I know it is really not *that* big of a deal but it feels like a big deal to me.  

Cora hanging out in her bean bag chair with lots of "friends"!

It is tricky that I can't just set her down on the floor just anywhere anymore.  We are getting used to it though.  

Sometimes she is content to lay on her back or her stomach to play with toys but poor girl, last night and today has been trying with all her might to push herself upright when she is on her tummy and she just can't do it.  :(  

One silver lining is that when she was a newborn I had this wooden sewing drawer on the changing table to keep diapers in and I really liked it but once she grew into bigger diapers they didn't fit in the sewing drawer so I had to retire it.  Since diapering now requires tiny diapers for the inside layer and bigger than she was wearing before diapers for the outer layer, I got my wooden sewing drawer back out for the little diapers, Poise pads for nighttime diapering and various tapes we have for the cast.  

Sometimes she doesn't mind being propped up against the couch or something to sit and play on the floor.  Toys have to be "tall" though or she can't reach them because she can't bend at the waist so if something small is on the floor right in front of her she can't pick it up.  So sad.  

See how her socks are half off?  She is *constantly* working her feet and our surgeon told us this is really good for everything to heal correctly by her exercising in that way.  God is so good to help Cora do exactly what needs to be done.  She doesn't have any clue that she is doing "physical therapy".  

I mentioned that clothing was one hurdle.  Our other biggest hurdle is the car.  Sweet girl hasn't been in the car since the trip home from the hospital last Thursday.  

We were told we would be able to borrow a carseat from the hospital that she would be able to fit in in the cast.  After surgery we found out that unfortunately the hospital was out of carseats.  They sent us home with a harness like this and Cora is supposed to lay across the back seat and we buckle the car's seatbelts through this.  It is pretty nutty.  

We have been on a walk around the neighborhood and walked over to our neighbor's house for a Super Bowl party and Adrian and I have each gotten out separately a few times but mostly we are sticking pretty close to home.  It would probably be harder if everything wasn't covered in lots and lots of snow here and the temps were in the negatives!  

It also really helps that we have had visitors!  

One of our friends from church gave us a couple places to try calling to see if we can get a carseat through them.  We shall see what happens on that front.  

Do you see those cutie curls on the side of her head??  


She is such a joy!

One week down!!  

Keep the countdown going!

Thank you so, so very much for all of you who are praying for us and blessing us in a myriad of ways from close by and from far away!


Saturday, February 1, 2014

the cast

Many of you reading already know this but for those who don't, at Cora's nine month well visit she was diagnosed with developmental hip displasia.  Big bummer but we are thankful it is something extremely treatable!

On Thursday Cora had a closed reduction surgery on her hip to put her hip back into socket and now she is in a hip spica cast for 6-8 weeks to let the body form a hip socket and set correctly.  

Did you know that we are all born without hip sockets?  The pressure of the femur in the right place forms both the ball of the femur and the socket itself.  (This is my understanding from what I have learned so far in this process but do not take this as medical advice or info.)  Pretty amazing, huh?  I love glimpses like this into how God works.

So Cora's hip was dislocated and therefore not forming the socket where it should have been.  

We are blessed beyond measure as God is seeing us through this moment by moment.  Sometimes I get discouraged about our time in the cast and so I have taken to thinking about it like this:

"Our time left in this cast (there is another one to come) is only as far in the future as _______ was in the past."  

It just helps me have some perspective.  

So, today, we only have as long left in this cast as December 4th was ago.  The photo below was from December 4th.  

Cora is wearing a felt flower that my sweet friend Vanessa helped me make for her and a cute little outfit that our special neighbor gave her.  

We had our carpets cleaned that day after our mouse incident.  Did I ever tell you we had a mouse?  ughhh

Today, Cora wore these socks for the first time.  The cast may not be cute but the socks are!

A family we are blessed to be getting to know at church brought us this chair today.  Their daughter used it when she was in the same kind of cast.  It has made SUCH a huge difference!  The way the cast is, Cora can't sit on the floor on her own, she can't really bend at the waist and sit up so it is somewhat frustrating for her not to be able to reach for toys and things like she is used to.  Also, for eating, she doesn't fit in her high chair so yesterday we were holding her on our laps for meals.  Now she can eat and play in this special chair!!  It is wonderful!  

I'm still trying to learn how to dress her in the cast.  Today I tried a 12 month onesie over the cast but this one wasn't big enough to snap around.  A cute blingy tutu does a nice job of distracting from the cast and diaper though don't you think?  :)  

One of our sweet friends brought an amazing dinner and a sweet present for Cora and some things for her to share with brother.  She loved it!  

We are very thankful for all of the people praying for us as we undertake this journey.  

More to come I'm sure . . .