Friday, February 27, 2009

Thursday, February 26, 2009

House Progress

The house is finally ready for us to live there. Lee finished painting the interior and did a great job! He is a perfectionist and is better than any professional. The carpet was installed yesterday and today. The boys enjoyed coloring while the work was being done.

The house is only 1 1/2 years old, so it looks brand new now that it has fresh paint and new carpet. I am really looking forward to getting settled. We plan to buy furniture for it this weekend and move on March 14th. We would move earlier, but I have to have my wisdom teeth removed on March 6th and do not want to worry about moving when I am not feeling 100%. I am definitely not going to miss going up three flights of stairs everyday while toting the boys.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Fire Trucks Do Not Fly!!!

I was playing with the boys, trying to teach Graysen how to fly Matchbox airplanes. He liked to "fly" the fire truck and thought that he was pretty funny stuff.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

More Cars

The boys spend most of their free time at home playing with Matchbox cars. Caleb takes care of his brother and makes sure that he always has a car. Graysen watches Caleb and plays with the cars everywhere that Caleb does. Right now Matchbox cars are both of the boys' favorite toy.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Beep Beep

I have discovered that Graysen's favorite toys are matchbox cars. He plays with them just like his brother. He drives them on different surfaces and will play with them longer than any other toy. He has learned from the master.

Graysen's Echo

Graysen had an echo this morning to look at his heart. Before I explain the results of the echo, I want to explain what I have learned about having a heart baby.

When I first found out about Graysen's condition, I knew that he would have a set of procedures throughout his life. The planner in me wanted to know how many surgeries he would have and when each would occur. I remember drilling the surgeon: "Would it be four?" "Yes." "Could it be five?" "Maybe." "Could it be six?" "Maybe." "Could it be seven?" Lee finally stopped me. It has taken me a year to understand, but I think that I am finally accepting that each case is different and cannot be planned out in advance. Graysen's cardiologist does not like to talk about anything more than three to six months out and what needs to be done at this moment in time.

I know that he will continue to have surgeries and procedures throughout his life. I know that I will not have a lot of notice before each one occurs and that the goal is to maximize the time between them. I also know that Lee and I are extremely blessed to have Graysen. He is very healthy compared to expectations and continues to amaze his doctors with how active and strong he is.

Graysen's echo showed moderate right pulmonary and left pulmonary stenosis. We first found out about this problem in November, but understand it more today. There is narrowing and turbulence in the pulmonary artery where the shunt has been stitched to it. (The connection of the shunt to the right ventricle of the heart looks great. The flow is laminar until the connection to the pulmonary artery.) The pressure estimate for the right artery is 60. This is 75% of normal systolic pressure (80), which is when it is time to start talking about the possibility that something will need to be done to alleviate pressure.

There is a missing piece of the puzzle. Graysen has a leaky valve going into the right ventricle of the heart. The doctor has tried twice (November and today) to get a pressure gradient measurement at this point, but cannot get a clear reading. This reading would give more information about the severity of the pulmonary stenosis.

The plan going forward is to try another echo in June. If the results are the same as the past two (unsatisfactory in regards to amount of data and condition of pulmonary artery), he will be scheduled for a sedated echo in Greenville. If the sedated echo confirms the stenosis, the first corrective step would be a cath procedure at MUSC to obtain detailed pressure measurements and balloon.

I do have to say that Graysen was very good during his echo. I allowed him to have his first sucker during the echo. He loved it and was so amazed that he laid quietly while licking it.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Getting Back to Normal

Today, Caleb went to Aunt Kim's to play with Ellison. I am trying to get back to our normal routine. I have been sick and am finally starting to get better. Lee did 100% mommy duty Saturday through Monday while I was sick in bed. He did a great job and was a big help.

I have started getting out, but I am still not back to my old energy level. Graysen has an echocardiogram and an appointment with the pediatric cardiologist tomorrow, so that will force me to get out and start getting back to normal.

Needless to say, this sickness has put us behind on working on the house and on my weekly chores. I hope to get caught up soon.

Also, as seen in the pictures, Caleb finally got a much needed haircut! Lee wasn't ready to tackle Graysen without me being able to help, so Graysen gets to keep his long hair for a little while longer.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Valentine Playdate with Emily

Today Emily and Lisa came over for a Valentine-themed playdate. We had a lot of fun with them. This morning, Lee asked Caleb if he was a ladies' man. Caleb said no, which somehow we believe. He is always shy around people. However, he loves to play with his friends.

Here are a few pictures from today.
Exchanging Valentines:

Emily brought Graysen a baby-friendly Valentine:
The kids made their own pizza for lunch:
Of course, we had to have cupcakes:
Emily and Caleb made Valentine magnets:

All three loved playing rough in the school bus. They liked to make it tumble sideways and crash:

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Valentine Playdate with Katelin

We spent the morning with Alisha, Katelin, and Abigail doing Valentine-themed activities. The kids had a lot of fun playing together. I think that their favorite part of the morning was getting to eat Valentine cupcakes.
If you ask Caleb, "What is Valentine's Day about?" He will respond with, "Hearts." So far, he is a big fan of Valentine's Day.

Sunday, February 8, 2009


Lee finished painting the study. He spent today working on the boys' room and the playroom. When he opened the blinds and windows in the playroom for ventilation, Caleb said, "Daddy wants watch cars and trucks." It was really cute.

We have been working really hard on the house, but it feels good to make progress. We hope to live in the house within several weeks. The next step after painting is to order new carpet for the house. The house is only one year old, but there was some hard living on the carpet. It is not in good condition. The house will be like new again after paint and carpet.

Donuts, Sickness, Painting, & Haircuts

Graysen is completely on table foods now. He loves to eat and often eats more than Caleb. Yesterday, he was allowed to eat his first donut at Dunkin Donuts. He loved it. We are headed back there again today. I am going to miss having a Dunkin Donuts in the parking lot of where we live. However, it may be for the best. Caleb had a 102.5F fever yesterday, even after a dose of Tylenol. He spent most of the day sleeping on the stairs of the new house. I became worried, so I took him to the doctor. The doctor didn't know what was wrong with him. It wasn't strep or an ear infection. The fever is better today, but he is still a sick little boy.
We are busy painting our new house. (Well, Lee is busy painting. My job is to tape and do prep work.) We are starting to make progress and hope to be finished by the end of next weekend. Here Lee is painting the study. This room will house his library, drawing desk, guitars, audio station, and a sleeper sofa for guests. It is the finished part of the basement and is a very cozy room. Today he is going to work on painting the boys' room and playroom.

Both boys desperately need haircuts. Caleb's hair is out of control. However, we are SO busy painting and working on the house that haircuts have been postponed until the painting is finished. I just wanted it noted that I realize that my boys' hair is getting long. It will be corrected soon.