Friday, October 31, 2008


What a fun night it was for the kids! We had Trunk or Treat at our church where a mock street was set up and anyone from the communuty could come and "trunk of treat" for goodies out of the trunks of cars in our church parking lot. It was so much fun! Reid was dressed as a bumble bee, and as you will see, was not real happy about it. I didn't get one smile with him in it! I think he was thinking more in terms of a football player....maybe next year!
We saw our good buddies (and former babysitter for Ellie) Rachel and her kiddos. In this picture you will see Riley and Reagan (the twins..and I have no idea which is which in this pic...sorry, Rach!), and Rachel holding Reid. So cute! You can visit Rachel at her blog to keep updated with their family. We think the world of them!
Here is Rach again holding Reid. Still, no smile from the Bee Man.

Here is Chloe (Rachel's #2 daughter) and Ellie. The oldest kiddo from the Hunt clan was with friends. Sorry we missed you, Makenna!
Not so sure about all this candy business. I know he wanted to dig into a peanut butter cup that Ellie had...not fair, huh?

An attempt to get the two of them smiling. What am I saying??? An attempt to get the two of them looking at the camera together would have been great!
Our sweet, but Little Stinker....Ellie.
What a fun night we had! Hard to believe another Halloween has come and gone. Pretty soon the holidays will be in full swing. Hard to believe.....

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Tag revisited

Another round of Tag, I guess. Thanks, Jen! Love ya! : )
Here are the rules this time...
1. Go to your pictures
2. Upload the 4th picture of the 4th folder
3. Post it
4. Tag 4 of my friends
Here goes nothing....
So, the fourth picture in my fourth folder was this one of Ellie. It was taken in late August of 2007. We took Ellie to a park in a nearby town that has rides and fun things for little ones to do. We went with our neighbors and their little guy who is Ellie's age. It was fun to look back on this doesn't seem that it was over a year ago that it was taken. Thanks for taking me down memory lane, Jen!!!!
Now.....4 friends to about this....if you so desire to help me out and take this challenge and play this with me....go for it...and let me know that you will play this game again with me. I won't officially "tag" anyone....but I better have at least 4 out there helping me out! C'mon...who will be first???? : )

We've hit a new milestone!

Reid went to the pediatrician today for his 1 year wellness visit (even though he won't be 1 until Monday). All looks good. It was a tough visit in a way because it was right in the middle of nap time. I hate that. So, I really messed up his schedule. He did well considering that his day was all out of whack. Here are the stats-
Weight- 24.5 pounds -74%
Length- 30.5 inches- 78%
Our doctor gave us the go ahead to turn around Reid's carseat, as well since he has met the height and weight requirements. Yipppppeee! So, I had to take a picture of the momentous day when both my babies are now able to face forward. It's hard to believe that on Monday we will be celebrating Reid's first birthday. sappiness now. I'll leave that for Monday......

What was I thinking????

Ellie trying to steal the show before the Christmas card photo session began. I think she thinks that we should just have her picture sent out in our Christmas cards. She obviously wasn't a bit shy for the camera here, was she???
Ok, so what was I thinking trying to get pictures of the kids for Christmas cards....and hoping that it would be simple, easy, and fun??? Seriously...just trying to get them to both focus on the camera was a task in itself. I wanted just a candid, sweet shot for our card this year..nothing fancy. I think I got a couple good shots that I am not going to share with you...because you will just have to wait until December when one shows up in your mailbox! But, I had to show you the adventure that we had trying to get some good shots. The one above...I have no idea what was so funny. I was tickling them with a feather duster...and their eyes would not focus on anything else BUT that. So, hence the lovely shot of Reid's clodhopper of a foot, there!

Oh, yes...Ellie wanted Sophie in the shot. Sure...why not??? She's a part of the family. But that totally took Reid's focus off the camera right away. He was more interested in trying to step on her here. I think he has one leg off the ground as if he is going to just hop right on her. Sophie will put up with anything. She's a great sport to say the least!

What big teeth you have, Sophie! Reid is intrigued.

They officially had enough of me and the camera following them around. They took off while they could...with me....following ever so closely behind them....just hoping to get one, simple, easy shot for be continued in December! : )

Heaven on Earth...

Don't mind the messy fridge....we had MANY left overs taking over our fridge here. Just wanted to show you that this is Reid's pick over anything he can get his hands on. I don't know if you can tell or not....but he is smiling SOOOO big in this picture. He can't wait for 2 more weeks to get here...then solids, here we come!!!!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Reid meeting Megan...

Ellie and Reid's mom here. I have decided that I am going to change the format of the blog a bit. When I started blogging, I thought it would be cute to talk about our family adventures through the eyes and words of Ellie. It worked for awhile, but now I feel the need to post to "big people", too....and that doesn't always work through a four year old, and I am quite tired of always having to post when it's me talking...and not Ellie. So, from here on's me talking....not Ellie. I will still share her "funnies"....but would like the blog to grow up a bit, so here goes nothing!

I took the kids last night to the nursing home that my grandma is in. They had trick or treating through the halls and the residents were passing out candy to all the little ones. It was really nice. I always want to expose Ellie and Reid to the many different people in our world...young and old...and I don't want them to ever fear going to visit their great-grandma. I don't think I ever had a great amount of going to nursing homes as a young child, and when I was exposed to them, I was a bit freaked out by the whole situation. Ellie is really good about going to see Grandma Mimi...and I want to keep it that way! Well, while we were there...something so neat happened. One of the directors of the facility grew up in my hometown and was just a bit older than me going through school. My parents know her family quite well. She was there last night and we got to talking and so on.....and here....her daughter, Megan, who is nine, was born with a unilateral cleft lip and palate. She has been through 8 surgeries including 3 revisions on her palate and bone grafting and the list goes on and on. What a little trouper she is...and Reid loved her from the minute he saw her. They both just looked at each other when I held him out to her...and he opened his arms up as if to say, "Let me give this little lady a big ole' hug", and so I asked Megan if she would be ok allowing me to take their picture together. She was excited...and as you can see, Reid was loving her!

Megan's care is provided by a hospital fairly close to us, but it isn't the same hospital that we go to. It was interesting to swap stories and hear all the dentistry work that she is now in the midst of at age nine. These kids share a tight bond that only they truly understand. I feel blessed that we were able to meet Megan. I have a feeling that she and Reid will meet again sometime soon. What a great night we had together. I am in awe of the strength of "our kids". We are surely the lucky ones to know such amazing little ones.

Back to his little sneaky ways....

Who's getting into trouble again????Uhhhh guessed it! Look at that grin! If that doesn't scream ornery, I don't know what does!!!!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

"Oh, Medina"

Ellie and Reid's mom here with an Ellie moment for you.

The other day Ellie was singing to Reid with as much gusto and heart as she possibly had in her. I was listening closely to what she was singing, and I knew it was the song, "Oh, my darling, Oh, my darling...Ohhh, my darling, Clementine...." but I had to laugh out loud because her rendition was a bit different. It went like this..."Oh, Medina...Oh, Medina...Oh, Medina..I love you." Medina is a town nearby us. I guess she thinks this song is about Medina....not My Darling. Oh, well...Reid enjoyed it and didn't know the difference! Hope she made you smile!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Who would have thought this was such a fun place?

Ellie and Reid's mom here....keeping busy as you will see thanks to Reid! The video just abruptly ends...and you will see why. I had to jump in to "save" the baby from disaster. So, sorry about the ending...but you will see the little man who is very responsible for keeping me on my toes at all times! Enjoy!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Update on Little Big Man....

Ellie and Reid's mom here with an update on Reid. Thanks to the many who have asked about him. You are all so sweet. As you can see by the picture...he is actively destroying the house again! Back to his normal, sweet, messy self! He was enjoying taking out all the silverware that I was putting into the dishwasher here. Brian can't wait until he can have chores...guess what is first on our list to help out with????

We had our post-op appointment with our surgeon on Friday, and things look good. No fistulas developing at this point and the front gumline is looking nice. Reid was given the ok to be on pureed foods for 4 weeks total and then off to the races we will go......normal foods after that! BREAD for Reid on day 4 weeks one day!!!! I know he can't wait already! Get this my cleft friends....NO TALK OF ARM RESTRAINST!!!! So, we didn't bring them up!!!!! Did we seriously get away with not having to use them this time around? We watched Reid like a hawk and never left him unattended.....but they never were brought That made life easier for us. But, then again, we were constantly with him waiting for him to put his hands in his mouth, or waiting for him to fall.....just always trying to keep up with him. But, we are on day 10....and he has done really well. I am proud of him.

He is doing well though with sleeping. He is back to napping better during the day and has been sleeping all night almost since we got home from the hospital. I am not giving him any pain meds during the day, but he does get one dose of Tylenol with Codeine at bedtime. I think he is also teething at this sleep is important, and the meds help him with that. He does not wake though, for any other doses. He gets fussy and is clingy a lot....but I can't blame him. He has been through a lot in a short amount of time. I am still off school this week to be with him which I am grateful for. Then, I will head back next week in full swing just in time for conferences! Thanks again for caring so much for our family. We are so lucky to have you all in our lives. More updates soon...

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Grocery trips can be fun!

Today at our local grocery store it was Trick or Treat day (thanks, Joni for the tip!). Mommy had to do some shopping I decided to get dressed up in my princess clothes and head to the store with Mommy and Reid. I am really going to be a skunk for Halloween this year, but since we were trick or treating inside today....I could just wear my princess clothes. How great is that???? It was super fun!

I even got my face painted there. A cute pumpkin!!!! I had a fun time. Who says grocery shopping is all bad???

Getting into the Halloween Spirit....

Here I am with Daddy (Mommy warned you that this was his job!) getting ready to carve our pumpkins. I love this!

Here is how my pumpkin came out! Pretty cute, huh? Oh,'s also me in my scary monster face, if you are wondering.
Mommy likes this face better, she said.
My new teeth I got from a Halloween walk in Grandma and Grandpa's town. I just laugh and look at myself in the mirror when I wear them!
Tah-Dah! The finished product! I think they came out cute! It was Daddy's idea to carve the cat with the moon pumpkin. It was my idea to make the scary face pumpkin. Which do you like?

Friday, October 24, 2008


Here I am looking out the window at the pretty "decorations" our neighbors got last night delivered to them by the rivarly football team. You should have seen the neighbors next door to us. He is the head coach of the football team....and his "decorations" were REALLY BIG! I told Mommy that the "decorations" were pretty....but not very nice to clean up after.

The Rival Game

Ellie and Reid's mom here...
I can't believe I am posting this....but I am. Triway staff and friends...sorry. Let me explain! I teach for a district other than the one we live in. There is a big rivarly between the school I teach for and the school district we live in. Ellie will go to school in the town we live she is my little Red Rider fan. Tonight our hometown team plays their BIGGEST rival game of the year against Wooster. Ellie wanted to show her support for "her" team. Go Red!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Game of TAG, anyone????

Ellie and Reid's mom here....

Ok, Tina....I am going to get you for this one! My friend, Tina, who also as a cleft affected daughter and lives in our hometown has TAGGED me. I figure I might as well get this over with, so here goes!!!!

7 things about me.....that you may not is hard because I am a pretty open book. I'll try!

1. I'm stubborn. Very. Ask Brian. He will be proud of me for admitting this. There you go, Brian...this one's for you!
2. I love tomato juice. Yep. No one else in my family does. Grosses them out. I love, love, love it.
3. I lost 68 pounds my junior year-my senior year in college. Yeah, those were the days! I worked really hard, ran daily, ate right, and happened. I need to try those methods out again since I am still carting around "Reid weight."
4. I have only taught 4th grade. For the 12 years I have's always been 4th graders.
5. I have a terribly awful fear of heights. I hate, hate, hate them.
6. I am a very scheduled person. I wish I were more "fly by the seat of my pants", but I like routine and knowing what to expect next. I know....boring, huh?
7. Brian and I met all because of a blind date. Amazing, huh? Who would have thought that here we sit....almost 7 seven years of marriage 2 beautiful kids and a life I absolutely am blessed to have.

So, now time to pick my friends to tag! You guys are now with it...and have fun!

I was sad to only "pick" seven friends to tag....but I will play by the rules. Have fun...hope to learn something new about you. Enjoy the day....blessings...

A new look for Ellie????

So, what do you think of me as a redhead???? I LOVE long hair, and Mommy bought this for me to play with in my dress up bin. I didn't take it off all evening. I even had Mommy style it for me. I love my new hair.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Reid experiencing Fall...

Ellie and Reid's mom here... Reid holding a pumpkin for the firt time showing off his "scrunchie face" again. He seems to use this face often. Too funny!
That's a little better, Reid.....still a little "scrunchie" in that nose, though!
It was a really nice fall day today. Perfect for a little walk outside while the sun was shining. Reid seemed to enjoy the air as well.
He was loving the leaf here. He held it for our entire walk....never let go once. He would just look at it and laugh. Don't you wonder what little ones think about? This picture is my new favorite.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Pumpkin time....for real this time around!

Ok, folks, time for real pumpkin business! We took off our funny faces, and are getting our pumpkins ready for carving. I hope you are reading this, Daddy! Mommy is counting on you tonight!
I love this messy part! Let me at it!
Step one complete! Daddy will be on for step 2. Updates to come!

Silly Pumpkin Faces!

Mommy and I had fun with a Pumpkin Art Project last night. I had fun cutting out eyes, noses, lips, ears, and even hair from old magazines. Then, we taped the body parts onto the pumpkins to make silly faces!!! What do you think?
Ha ha! Aren't they silly????

Sunday, October 19, 2008

An Ellie moment....

Ellie- Daddy, what is your middle name?
Brian- James
Ellie- What is Reid's middle name?
Brian- James
Ellie- What is Pappy's first name?
Brian- James
Ellie thinking this all over.
Tears begin.
More tears.
Histerical tears.

***think she would appreciate that when she is about 12????? : ) Sweet, though. Very sweet. (however a little cut on Mommy since Ellie and her share the same middle name!)

Boys and their toys...

Brian showing Reid the Mustang. Maybe one day it will be Reid's. In a LONG, LONG, LONG time! I can't think about that yet!

Reid very happy about this "machine". Brian revving the engine, and Reid soaking it all in.

Brian showing Reid that proper care is important for the Mustang. I wonder if he got out the q-tips and cleaned the front grill area? And you all who don't know Brian very well think I am kidding??? Think again! : ) Reid will learn well, I am sure.

Day 2 at home post-op

The new face....Scrunchie Face when he is unhappy about not getting all the food he wants! It's going to be a long 6 weeks~

Looking pretty good. The swelling seems to have gone down quite a bit. Still some seeping from the right nostril....not anything from the left. Slept well last night....didn't even get up for pain meds. Fussy during the afternoon into the evenings though. Won't go down easily for naps. Actually, is crying right I need to go soothe. He used to be so good at going down for naps and bedtime...I certainly hope it returns back to normal someday! One day at a time, though....I know.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Night #1 at home

Ellie and Reid's mom here...

Well, we managed to get by last night! Reid did well. Thank goodness for my parents and in laws who have taken Ellie until Sunday for us. That is one less thing I have to worry about and can focus all my attention on Reid. That has helped!

Reid was in hyper-overtired-not knowing what to do with himself-cruddy feeling-nose seeping-ear bugging-mouth hurting-yucky mood last night! I think he was so overtired, he just could not focus himself. Poor guy. So, around 7:45, I took him to bed. I rocked him and soothed him a bit until he was really tired, and then laid him down. He went to sleep without much of an issue. He woke up close to 11 pm in time for pain meds. I did give him Tylenol with Codeine for pain management through the night and have not had to use it during the day yet. He can manage with just Tylenol or Motrin through the daytime without too many issues. Putting him back down was a bit trickier. He didn't want me to leave him. I think I had him asleep about 6 times and every time I would put him in bed, he would HOP up faster than the speed of light to catch me before I would head out the room. Stinker! So, I rocked and settled, sang, and soothed. Finally, about an hour later, he seemed ready to go to bed. I put him down, he fussed for a slight period, and went to bed....until 7:15 this morning. I could not believe it. I kept waking to check on him...and he did well. He woke up close to his usual wake up time. He ate well this morning. He wanted a container of yogurt with cereal mixed in and a container of baby food (a fruit). He drank 4 ozs. of apple juice from a sippy cup and about an oz. of milk. What a little man. He played with me on the floor, took some Motrin for pain, and was in great spirits. Around 9 am this morning, he started acting tired, and so I took him up for his usual naptime routine. He went down with no fuss. I am blesssed. He seems to have very slight drainage this morning from right nostril, but nothing from the left. No blood or seeping from the mouth today which is good. I will post pics later....but thank you for your nighttime prayers....they helped us all get some rest that we all needed badly. Well, time for me to grab a hot shower while I can. I will post more later. Much love...

Friday, October 17, 2008

Reid's home!

Getting a little rest....because of "blankie" from home. That makes everything better!

He hated his IV's....couldn't get cozy.

Friday morning....swollen, but in good spirits.

A little play time with Daddy.

Going home from Rainbow. We were treated so well again, and had a fantastic support team there. As you can see from Reid's smile....he loves his team of doctors that have totally changed us all.

Reid and Ellie's mom here.
We are home...and exhausted to say the least! Reid did well for his palate surgery. I am amazed at the resilience of kids. It truly astounds me. Reid was taken back to surgery at 9:45 am Thursday morning and arrived in recovery around 4:00 pm. It was a long day for us all. Reid was given some pretty strong pain meds in recovery and was out of it until we got to his room around 5:30 pm. Dr. Gosain was able to construct the palate with the tissue that Reid had and did not have to go any other route, which we were grateful for. He was also able to create the front gum line and get it all aligned. One tooth had to come out (which we have for the tooth fairy!) but the other top teeth are still there. They may have to come out later, we'll see. Reid did require a blood transfusion in the OR due to the amount of blood loss that he had. They also checked him through the night by taking more blood to check his levels to make sure all was ok....or he would have had to have another. Thank goodness, all his levels were ok throughout the night. Reid made life tricky for me last night, but I can't blame him. He just felt cruddy. He had some drainage from the nose throughout the night and HATED his IV lines. HATED THEM. So, I held him all night in a horribly uncomfortable rocking chair, and I felt so bad for him because neither of us could get comfy....but he would have NOTHING to do with laying in bed for longer than about 10-15 minutes. It was a long night. Then, right when we would get cozy and comfy.....(for a brief period, at least) a nurse or doctor was in to check things out and would wake him up. Not fun. I know they have to....just not fun!

Ok, my cleft family friends...we DID NOT get arm restraints....or instructions to use any from past surgery. Sersioulsy. Mistake???? I don't know. Reid is on a soft diet for 6 weeks and nothing in the mouth except a sippy cup.....but no restraints????? I don't know. I put him in bed not more than 10 minutes ago...and I am going to sleep near him....but dare I let him go without restraints? I don't want him to poke his mouth and cause an issue, that is for sure! He has a blankie that he holds at night and puts by his cheek....but hasn't had the guts to try for the mouth yet. Too sore. Advice? Lay it on me! I'll take it. During lip repair surgery, we used them for about a week...and then he really did ok because he wanted nothing to do with his mouth/lip area. This time around, I feel a bit more nervous. With all the tissue involved...I just don't want to mess it up!

He has eaten fairly well today. He wants to eat more than drink. He took about 4 ozs. of apple juice today and maybe 3 ozs. of milk. He ate yogurt, ice cream (2 times) , applesause (2 times), a jar of carrots, some bananas w/ pudding...and some pedialite. He has had wet diapers today, which is good, and seems to be happy to crawl around. So, again to my cleft families.....I am so worried about him bumping his face and hurting himself. Did you watch your kids CONSTANTLY during this time period? Reid was NUTSO tonight. Wanting to just get into everything and just dive in to his toys. I was constantly within reach so he doesn't bump himself. So, my question to you....when can I relax a bit? Or do I freak out for 6 weeks? : ) Let me know. I am going to send Brian off the deep end, I think!

Lastly, thank you ALL for your support, unending love, and time you have dedicated to our family. We are grateful to you all. We value each of you....and thank you for being such an important part of our family! More updates to come soon....I am sure. We'll hope for a calm night tonight.....

****Abby....Reid's gift came in the mail today! What AWESOME timing. HE LOVED IT! Thank you for being so special and sweet. Reid sends lots of kisses your way, little one! Thank you so much!

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?