Saturday, August 30, 2008

Reid's new passion....

STANDING!!!!! He is so excited that he can pull himself up on his own now. He does not spend much of his day in one place...except for nap time and bed time. Other than that, he is on the move!

So proud of himself!!! ****thanks, Joni for letting us borrow the standing table! Reid loves it as much as Jax did, I think!***

Keeping Busy, Birthday Party Planning, and Getting into a Groove...

Ellie and Reid's mom here...

Sorry it has been awhile since I have posted pics of the kids. I think we are getting into a good routine here since school has started. The kids are up by 7 am no matter the day....their little bodies have adjusted to our new routine, which I am so grateful for.

Ellie will be 4 on Sept. 4 which is unreal to me. We are planning a party with the neighborhood kids (we have 4 others who are all VERY close in age that we always celebrate things with) for next Friday. Guess I should go get the supplies today. That is the hard part about working. No more going to the store at 1 in the afternoon to go grab something. Nope....those tasks are kept for Saturdays now. It's ok. I just have to get adjusted as well! So, big party next weekend. Pinata and all. Oh, boy!

Then, Ellie is one marble away from getting her prize for filling her happy jar again. We promised her a "trip" to a hotel with a pool this summer...but she did not fill her jar in time. So...I have next Monday off from school. I know you city folks with LOVE this one. We have Fair Day. Yes, you heard me correctly....Fair Day. When I first started teaching at this district, I had no idea what Fair Day was. Now, I know. We have a fairly rural district where many kids show animals at the county fair. or show their 4-H projects. This then creates many absences in school for the Fair Monday is always Fair Day for kids....and school is cancelled for all county schools. Ok, let me have it city folks.....laugh all you want! : ) It's ok! But, anyway..on with my story...since we are off, Brian is taking the day off, and we are taking Ellie to a hotel, or "vercation" as she calls it. Reid will stay with my parents. It will be nice to give Ellie some time alone. I am looking forward to it. She doesn't know about this yet.

Reid is doing well. Getting into everything and LOVING to pull himself up. Ellie didn't even crawl until close to a year and didn't walk until almost 15 mos. Not Reid. He is a man on a mission. I have a feeling, he will be walking before a year. He is doing well at the sitter, and loves the attention he gets from Jen. I am thrilled with how adjustments have gone. We are lucky.

School is good....we are getting into the swing of things. Amazing how you bounce back after being gone almost a year. Just like riding a bike, I guess. You just do it....and somehow, never forget! It's nice to be with those I love to teach with. I am blessed with great co-workers.

Well, that's it for now....time to go get ready for the day, so we can go pick out the pink plates and party favors! Until next time.....

Monday, August 25, 2008

Prayers requested please...

Ellie and Reid's mom here. What you are looking at is an accident that involved 2 dear friends of my dad's. They were heading out for a day trip which was abruptly interrupted when the driver of the semi fell asleep at the wheel and went across the road from the opposite side causing this accident in PA. My dad's friends were in the red pickup truck underneath the semi's cab. The driver of the pickup, Steve, was much better off than the passenger, Tom. Steve was released from the hospital with facial injuries and lots of bumps and bruises. Tom was life flighted to a hospital in PA. He was to hopefully come off the vent today and was undergoing surgery this afternoon as well. The accident occurred Saturday. Tom has several shattered bones in his legs as well as many facial issues. He was pinned in the vehicle and I know my mom said his ankle was shattered and hip was also a mess. These two men are such dear friends of my dad (and family). I just ask for prayers for them. My dad is heading out for PA tomorrow to see Tom. I know these families would love your prayers and love during this time. I am amazed they walked away with only the injuries that they had. Thanks again for your thoughts for Steve and Tom.

Here is the vehicle they were in. Gives me goosebumps.....

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Mommy's two favorite boys....

Mommy took these pictures before church this morning. Mommy is REALLY happy that Reid is on a good schedule now for an earlier morning nap so we can make it to church. It has been hard to go with Reid's nap...but since he is on a new schedule now, we made it to church with plenty of time to even spare this morning. It was great!

A great picture of Daddy and Reid.

See Reid's tooth?

And not the mention, the funny spikey bathtub hair, too!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

I am a good teacher!

I taught Reid how to stand up in the crib today. Mommy was less than thrilled! : ) Reid was really excited in this picture. He was squealing really loudly! And, I was just being cute!

I love forts!

My daddy built me a fort today to keep me off the kitchen floor while he was working so hard cleaning it! Pretty smart Daddy, huh?

I was pretending to be sleeping....Mommy knew better. The smile gives me away, I guess!

Mommy loves Daddy...

My mommy loves my daddy. Especially today. Mommy took Reid and me to the parade in a nearby town this morning. It was a lot of fun. While we were gone...Daddy started cleaning the house. Now that Mommy is working...Daddy has to do some extra stuff that he hasn't done in awhile. A LONG while since Mommy has been home for 9 months. So, Daddy literally is STILL cleaning the house. He is scrubbing the kitchen floor....with a scrubbrush! Seriously! When he means business...he means business. Mommy is grateful for Daddy's help today. She just wants him to know how much she appreciates his help and hard work. I love my daddy, too!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

"Randomness" from Ellie and Reid's mom...

I guess getting up before 6 am does have its advantages!

"Ellie, like those bing cherries????" : )

TROUBLE!!!!!! Nothing but, TROUBLE!

Reid hasn't had the stents in for a couple of days. We wanted to see if his nose flattened or kept its shape. Here is a good profile shot of him from today. We think his nose looks pretty good. I think the stents' job is coming to an end.....real soon. : ) We go for our eval. on Sept. 12 to see. Oh, and palate surgery has been scheduled for Oct. 16 tentatively. Lots happening around here!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


Ellie and Reid's mom here with a mid-week report.
It is hard to believe that tomorrow is Thursday already! The kids are doing remarkably well with our new schedule. Ellie is awakened around 6:50 am....and has been a trooper each day. She has done so well, I could not be more proud of her. She is enjoying Jen's house and is adapting to her new routine. Reid is also doing pretty well. Jen has done a great job with him. Reid has been a little cranky lately because he is really getting the teeth! He just wants to bite on anything he can get his little mouth around. He has taken earlier morning naps and earlier afternoon naps...which means he is cranky for us when we get him home for the evenings. Again, part of this is the teeth issue. Ellie keeps asking me, "Why is Reid mad?" I could not figure out what she was talking is referring to his mouth. It does look like he is mad because he is clenching his jaws together because he is gnawing those little gums! Too funny! Anyway...we are doing pretty well. It's an adjustment....but we knew we were in for some change. As you can see above....Reid is sacked out. He goes down for the night now around 7:15...and I wake him at 7 am. What a trooper. He is a sweetie pea...and I could not be more proud of my kiddos for going through this transition with me. Thanks for all your well wishes out there. It's so nice to be thought of!

Monday, August 18, 2008

My mind is at ease....

Ellie and Reid's mom here with a few notes from the day....

First of all, I am happy to report that we all made it! Whew! I must admit, Ellie was an angel this morning for me. For all of you who truly "know" know that she can present some challenges if she wants to! When I woke her at 6:50 for the day...she was a trooper...because she was so excited to go to Jen's house. I was so glad. Transitions are not always easy, and she really did well. THANK YOU, ELLIE!

I woke Reid a bit before 7...and his stent was out. Brian and I opted on leaving it out for the day. We couldn't fathom putting him through the stent ordeal so early in the he went without today. We are coming up on the 3 month mark for we are easing up a little. We don't feel as stressed to have them in 24 hours a day. We pick our battles...and today, this was not one that Brian and I were willing to fight.

Reid took his good ole' sweet time drinking his bottle...and I ended up having to stop him midway through in order to get out the door. Jen had to finish that task up for me. I guess he spit up a lot this morning...probably because his feeding was a mess and rushed and then he had to sit in a carseat for a bit to get to Jen's house...and we all rides and reflux with Reid don't mix well. So, sorry about that, Jen! My bad!

So, I dropped them off...and did well. No tears from anyone...including me! Ellie was excited to be there and did well. Reid went to Jen with no issues, and I left with out crying. A good morning! I knew they were in good hands....and that was relief in itself. I am blessed to have such good caretakers in my kids' lives.

So, no phone calls from Jen to me or vice versa....the day was smooth. When I picked up the kids after work, Ellie didn't want to leave, and screamed that to me several times. I was glad though that she seemed to make herself at home...and enjoyed her day. I met Adam while I was there to pick the kids up. He is quite the nice little guy that also goes to Jen's. He will be a second grader...and I think Ellie has quite the crush on him. : ) Oh, boy!

Reid did well today, too. I was AMAZED that Reid was in the SAME CLOTHES as he went to Jen's in. That is a miracle in itself! No major spit ups that Jen couldn't handle....and he slept well for her. I am so glad he is easy to put down. Jen was able to put him in the pack n play and leave the room with no issues. THANK YOU, REID! All in was a great day. I was in meetings all day then came home to iron my clothes, pick up the kids, organize "stuff" for the evening for Brian to take over, and back to school for Open House to meet my kids and parents.

Both kids are down for the night. Reid was down about 7:30...and Ellie at 8:30. I pray for a good night...because I am beat, too. Amazing how school and a new routine can wear you out so quickly. Wow. I, again, feel blessed to have had such a good day. I know not all will be like this, but I will take them while I can! Thank you Jen for making my transition (and the kids') as easy as can be. I hope you know how grateful I am to you....and your family!

Well, my kids at school come tomorrow....and I think I am ready to begin the year. Here's to a great start to the school year. Thanks for reading my ramblings.......
Until next time!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

From full time full time teacher...

Ellie and Reid's mom in with some pre-school thoughts. I really can't believe that I begin my teacher work day tomorrow...and have Open House to meet my class tomorrow night. I jump into teaching then on Tuesday. I will be starting year #12 which is also hard to believe. How do I feel about this? I have very mixed thoughts as I sit here. I will miss these 2 little buggers more than I can even fathom right now. But, part of me is excited to get back into a routine, and get into the swing of things. I do truly love my 4th graders, too.

Being home since November has given me a true appreciation of my own mom. She was a full time mom from the time we were born. I do think that being a full time mom at home is harder than going to work at times. I have a true admiration and appreciation to all of you stay at home moms...including my own. There is nothing better and more fulfilling than being at home with your kids, and in my opinion, nothing harder!

I have been blessed beyond measure to have had the last 9 months at home with Reid and Ellie. I am truly blessed that I was able to spend every moment with them doing the best things in the world....reading, coloring, learning letters, laughing, snuggling, library time, swimming, play dates, staying in jammies until late in the morning at times just because, taking walks and bike rides, swinging at the park, picnics on the front porch, and watching Reid and Ellie become great friends as they watch and learn from each other. Reid has taught Ellie how to be patient, caring, and compassionate towards the needs of others. He has taught her that it's okay to be different, and that love is such a powerful emotion. Ellie has taught Reid how to laugh harder than I could ever imagine. She taught him how to clap all on her own. Reid admires his big sister so much, and I have been so lucky to watch their relationship grow and change over the last 9 months.

I am so glad that when I drop them off at Jen's tomorrow that they will be in good hands. I am glad that I will not have to worry about their safety or well being. Will I be sad? I think I will miss the little things that I have become so used to as I have been home. I can't believe that I will be sending Ellie off to preschool in 2 weeks, either. Life sure does move fast. I am ready to meet my new bunch of kids, and will be excited to welcome them to a brand new school year, but I will also miss the sound of Ellie and Reid's laugh throughout the day. A new chapter is starting...and ready or it comes! Take good care of them for me, Jen.....and to the 24 parents that are sending me your 10 year olds....I promise to take good care of them for you. Here we go!

Friday, August 15, 2008

It's back......

With the big man crawling is a necessity. A total pain....but a major necessity!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Say, "Cheese!"

Mommy took Reid and I to get our pictures taken today for Reid's 9 month pictures and my 4 year pictures. She had many it was a great excuse to get out a bit before school starts for Mommy. See what you think! Double click on any for a good close up view!

I am good at getting my picture taken!

Pretty cute!

See the drool on Reid's shirt? That's Reid!

Just being us!

I love my baby. It was a good day!

After we got our pictures taken, Mommy let me have a cookie and milk at the food court. Reid was eyeing me the whole time I was eating. So, Mommy got a kiddie cup of ice cream for Reid to have. He ate the whole thing by himself!!!!! We laughed so hard, we had to show the girl at Dairy Queen that Reid finished the treat by himself! It was a fun day!

Rub-a-dub-dub....there's 2 in the tub!

This is the first bath I have taken at home with Reid. (we took at bath in Grandma and Pappy's tub once). Reid thinks I am funny! We were getting ready for our pictures to be taken today! Mommy wanted us squeaky clean!

Mommy thinks this picture is funny because you can see my face in the mirror! We stayed in the tub until we were little raisins! It was fun!

**Hey, Rachel...remember getting this mirror for me for my first birthday? We still use it everytime we take a bath! Reid likes it now!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

9 month comparing

Here are pictures of me, Ellie, and Reid both taken when we were 9 months old. Mommy likes my face in this's the crinkle nose face. There are some definite similarities between Reid and me. But, Reid is huge. I was just a peanut....and Reid is a meatball! Mommy says she thinks we are just perfect. She likes to compare how we look when we were the same age. Moms are silly!

Getting ready for Jen's...

This looks funny, doesn't it? A pack n' play and a crib in the same room??? Mommy is getting ready for Reid to transition to Jen's house because school starts next week. NEXT WEEK! Mommy wanted that emphasized! Reid will be taking naps in the pack n' play....and he hasn't done that before. So, Mommy set it up for a trial run this week to get him adjusted to sleeping somewhere a little different than what he is used to. Reid doesn't seem to mind it too much!

He thinks he is a big man since he can stand up in it. Watch out Jen! This little guy will soon be on his way to YOUR house!!!! Are you ready?

He is ready....and we are so blessed to be going somwhere so special. See you Monday, Jen!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

My, how time flies....

Ellie's mom here. Just looking through pictures today. Here's a little trip down memory lane. The above picture was taken of Ellie in August 05. She was 11 months old.

Here is Aug. 06...almost 2 years. She was quite the ham even then! I am not sure if she was planning to go deep sea diving or use a drill press!

August 07...almost 3 years here and so proud of her new wheels.

August 08...almost 4 years old, and hard to believe. My little princess and dare devil rolled into one! I am so you, Ellie.

Ellie Moments....

Ellie's mom here...
Today Brian was picking up the Sophie "treasures" from our yard. For those of you who don't know...Sophie is our Golden Retriever. Ellie was "helping" Brian find the treasures. Brian was holding the bag with all of the "treasures" in it while Ellie pointed to the place where Brian should go next. She was walking right in line with Brian when she said....

"What's that smell?"
Brian replies, "It's the Sophie poop."
Ellie then says, "Hmmm, that's strange."
Meanwhile, Brian is standing there laughing HOLDING the grocery bag of "treasures" right next to Ellie. Ahhhh....too funny.

Then, later Ellie wanted to play basketball with her hoop. Brian was shooting hoops. I came out to join them, and I praised Ellie for doing so well. Just then, she tried to shoot a basket, but missed the hoop. She looked at me and said, "Mom, I didn't do so well. I didn't even get a home run." Oh boy. Brian sure has his work cut out for him, doesn't he????

Friday, August 8, 2008

My Great-Uncle Dave and Cousin Gabe...

I had such a great day today. My Great-Uncle Dave (my mom's uncle) and his grandson, Gabe came over to visit and play with me. They brought these balloon rockets that we shot into the air. It was so much fun. Here I am with Gabe. He will be in kindergarten this year. I am only going to preschool. He is my friend.

Gabe was getting the balloon ready to launch.

Here I am using the pump to fill up my balloon. They are really big!

I told you the balloons were big! See???

Reid thought the balloons were funny!

Then, we flew a kite in our backyard. It was a great day for kite flying!

Here I am flying the kite ALONE! I was so proud of myself!

Here Gabe and I are flying the kite.

What a super day it was! Come back soon Uncle Dave and Gabe! Love you!

Oh boy!

Mommy isn't sure if she likes this crawling thing with Reid or not. He's good at finding things, at least! He certainly found this basket with no trouble!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

The dwindling posts...

Ellie and Reid's mom here....

Well, I have mixed emotions right now. School starts soon. Real soon. The 18th....yikes! That is SOON! I have been so lucky to have been at home since the birth of Reid. Now, back to reality. I have been in my room now for 4 days sorting, organizing, re-arranging, stapling, taping, re-doing, cleaning, and so on. I miss my blogging time. I so enjoy the moments when I can sit down and relax a bit and catch you all up on life...and I can catch up with so many lives that I love to catch up on! Part of me is ready to teach again. I love my 4th graders. But, it will be hard leaving Ellie and Reid. I am grateful for the sitters that have been in Ellie's life so far....and I look forward to a new chapter as we go to Jen's for our child care. I am grateful to have found someone as wonderful as the other 2 gals that have cared for Ellie. I am grateful that my kids will be in a loving, Christian, faith-filled home. I am not worried about their care AT ALL. That is a blessing. I AM worried about getting 2 up and ready in the morning and out the door by 7:20. Wow...that will be tricky. Especially with the stents. Yuck. We will do our best.

I am taking on a new subject at school this year....2 really. We have re-vamped our 4th grade positions, and after 11 years of teaching Science...I am taking on Math. It will be a change and a challenge...but one I am ready for. I am also adding Reading to my teaching. I have taught it before...but not in awhile. A year of changes.

I will blog when I can and check in with all of you as often as possible. You are my little network of support....and I will miss checking in as often as I have this summer. It has been wonderful being home. (but I AM ready for a conversation with an adult!)

And thank you for the many who are praying for our insurance situation. It is a mess...and we are just waiting for the next step. I don't really know what will come out of it...but I will keep you all informed. We are faithful and believe that Reid will be taken care of. We won't sacrifice his care for anything. Looks like palate surgery will most likely take place in Oct. No exact date yet. Still waititng.

Well, time to prop my feet up a little and cut out some lamination! Yep, looks like the school year is already in full swing!!!!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Curve ball

Ellie and Reid's mom in for a bit....

Insurance. Ahhhh....gotta love it and hate it at the same time. A little story for you all tonight. Today was a cruddy day to say the least. Thank goodness for my hairdresser whose daughter has outgrown her Barbies...and gave them to Ellie. They entertained Ellie all afternoon while I made phone call after phone call. Let me explain.

I carry our insurance for our family through my school system. We have had Medical Mutual insurance for years. When I became pregnant, we were on Med. Mutual insurance. We NEVER had any issues and all was well. July 1, 2007...our insurance changed. Mind you...I was 5 months pregnant and we switched carriers through school. We really had no issues. All worked out well. The new plan took care of the rest of my pregnancy and cared for Reid's medical issues. It was a fine switch. July 1, 2008...our district has gone back to Medical Mutual after issues with the "new" carrier that we had for the one year period. biggie because we have dealt with them before. Well.....but they had not dealt with Reid. Reid was not born when we were switched to the new carrier. So, Medical Mutual hasn't had the privelege of carrying Reid on their plan. on with my story.

I called our plastic surgeon's office today just to check in with a palate surgery date. We have been waiting for awhile now, and it is NOT like them to not contact me. So, I called in. They were so sweet and basically said that they are waiting on our insurance to approve the surgery and so on. A light bulb went on in my head.....they didn't know that our plan had switched. We haven't been to the p/s since June...on the other plan. I felt so badly and explained everything. They took down our info and so on. As the insurance gal from the hospital was going over everything with me she says....."I just want to warn you." And with those words...I thought I was going to be sick. I knew what she was going to say. She continued..."Medical Mutual is not in our network."

WHAT??????? You are a MAJOR hospital (not to mention the #5 children's hospital in the nation, the #1 children's hospital in the midwest) and they are NOT in Medical Mutual's network????? I was stressing over these words...I was trying to figure out what this was going to mean for us....for Reid. I knew right there, that we were NOT going to switch our care. I don't care if I have to totally rearrange my life....I WILL NOT switch Reid's care. We know our doctors and nurses so well, and love them dearly. They are a part of Reid's life...and I can not sacrifice that. I won't.

So, I spent the entire afternoon on the phone to so many people trying to figure out where to go from here. (thank God for the Barbies! ) None of our doctors or specialists are in the network under our insurance. Unreal. Since we are in the middle of Reid's care with an upcoming surgery in Oct. or Nov., we have filed a waiver to see if we can still get coverage due to ongoing care that has already begun. We don't know what this will mean for Reid's long term care. I know for certain, I will NOT take him back to where we started. (go to Reid's cleft journey to understand where I am coming from if you don't know what I am talking about) For now, I am trying to remain calm and have a level head about the whole experience. If you talk to the many I talked to on the phone today...they will tell you what a mess I was. Ellie came over to me numerous times today with kleenex. Bless her heart. I couldn't even give her Mommy time today....I was too busy on the phone trying to get somewhere with this mess. I bet the insurance lady thought I was a piece of work. She asked me questions about our situation, and I just cried and cried to her. Poor lady! She must think I am a total fruitcake! Then, I had to call church for something, and our secretary is the SWEETEST person around. When I heard her voice, I was another basket case to her. I am thankful for all of you that are thinking of us and praying all will work out in the end. I was just hopeful to get some school work done today since I start back to teaching in 13 days. What a curve ball our family has been tossed. Somehow....we will get through this. It's just a little rough right now, to say the least. Thanks upfront for keeping us in thought. I will update you when I hear more.

Happy 9 months, Biggie Boy!

Ellie and Reid's mom here. How can it be that I have a 9 month old little guy already??? Unreal. Reid is crawling now and getting to what he thinks he should have. Most of what he thinks he should have, Ellie thinks he shouldn't have!!!! He is doing well and just getting to be such a little ham! We are blessed beyond measure.

Happy 9 month birthday, Big Man! We love you!
Hello, and welcome to my page! I am so glad you are here. I am going to try and show you the average life of a 5 year old from my perspective. Mommy and Daddy will help me along the way if I get stuck.

Let me first introduce my family to you. I am Ellie. I am a 6 year old. I live in Ohio with my Mommy, Daddy, little brother Reid, and dog, Sophie. My mommy is a teacher. She teaches nine and ten year olds and loves it. She has been teaching for twelve years. My daddy works with computers. He works hard everyday.

We all love spending time together. I have wonderful grandparents and a terrific extended family. I am a very lucky girl. Thank you for visiting my page. Write to me any time. I love getting mail!!!

Many blessing to you all.

Little Ski (Ellie)

Mommy and me having cuddle time at Hocking Hills.

Told ya, my hair can be wild! And you thought I was kidding!

Hmmm, Blue's Brother's perhaps?