Monday, July 26, 2010
Monday, July 19, 2010
We had a GREAT time at Disneyland/California Adventure. I really enjoyed spending some one-on-one time with Eric. The last time Eric was at Disneyland he was 4 years old and he doesn't remember much. This time around, he really got into it. Because he went with his much older cousins, he was forced coerced to go on a lot of rides he would have preferred not to go on. You have to know that Eric is deathly afraid of heights, so much so that you can't even pick him up without him panicking. Somehow, we got him on Thunder Mountain (multiple times), the Matterhorn and another roller coaster ride in California Adventure. His favorite rides were the cars and Pirates of the Caribbean - which he and I did together numerous times. I made him go with me on my favorite ride - Small World. But, his cousins had already convinced him that the ride was "torture" and filled with "Chuckie" dolls, so he spent the entire ride mocking it. Oh well, it's still my favorite ride and I'm okay going on it all.by.myself.
It was great to have so many of the cousins together and with Mary being in a wheelchair, it was as good as a fast pass - which made her cousins very happy. I think the last time we had this many cousins together at Disneyland, a few of them were still in diapers and we were pushing them around in strollers. Time flies!
Here are some pictures for your viewing pleasure :)
Friday, July 16, 2010
In a spur of the moment decision, I decided to take the kids to Disneyland this weekend. I, along with three of my kids, a bunch of cousins, and my sister will be spending the weekend at the Magic Kingdom. Thank you Kristi for helping out with Jack this weekend! (I would have no life outside of my house without her.) I wish Jack could come with us, but we missed the window of opportunity for him to enjoy Disney - when he was small enough to hold on our lap. There's little he could do at Disneyland, although I suppose there is lots for him to see. However, Disneyland in July is not the best time (weather) for sightseeing. In any event, it's the last hurrah before school as Mary and Eric start back to school a week from Monday.
Have a great weekend and thanks for checking in.
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Yesterday, Kristi called me at work to ask if I knew about the bruises on Jack's pinkie finger.
I did not.
When I got home, I saw this:
I have no idea when or how this happened*, but this kind of stuff just breaks my heart. It kills me that Jack was hurt and he couldn't tell me about it. Yes, it's only a sprained pinkie, it looks worse than it is and in the scheme of things, it's not that big of a deal .... but it still bothers me. It's times like this that I wish - oh how I wish - that Jack could talk.
But he can't.
And I hate it.
But, he's still happy.
So, I can be too.
Except when I look at that bruised pinkie.
*Jack wears hand splints at night and I'm always very careful when I put them on that all his fingers are straight. I'm wondering if I missed his pinkie the other night and perhaps it was bent back in the splint. Makes me so upset to think that might be what happened. I really haven't a clue and I don't recall Jack crying anytime the last few days. *sigh*
Sunday, July 11, 2010
While Jack was safe and comfortable in the care of the Ryan House staff, I snuck away for half a day and enjoyed a day at the lake with my sister, brother-in-law and niece. It was fun and "Africa hot". But, if you're going to be out in the Arizona sun, there's no better way to spend it than on a boat on the lake.
For those of you who didn't hear the story on FB .... I got a phone call from Eric on Friday telling me that he'd just had a large black ant removed from his ear! I'm not sure how he got an ant in his ear, but, fortunately, Peggy's husband is a pediatrician, so he had the necessary instruments to pull the thing out of Eric's ear, which saved them a trip to the ER. Peggy said in 30 years of practice, her husband has pulled a lot of things out of kids ears, but he said this was the first time he's pulled a live ant from an ear. Eric told me he's not going outside anymore!
We're all anxious to get Eric back home .... it's too quiet around here.
Have a great week everyone!
Friday, July 09, 2010
How come short work weeks always feel like the longest? I'm so ready for the weekend. We are spending another weekend at the Ryan House. As you have probably noticed, we are trying to spend one weekend a month there to get the staff used to Jack and Jack used to the staff. I'm not sure when I'll be comfortable leaving Jack by himself there, but the hope is that some day I will get to that point. We'd like to visit my brother in Florida next March during Spring Break, so hopefully by then.
This weekend I won't have Eric with me, so I actually might get some respite. I didn't tell Eric we were going to the Ryan House because I was afraid he wouldn't get on the plane to Peggy's. As much as Eric loves Peggy, he likes the Ryan House equally as much. The news from St. Louis is that Eric is having a great time. I hear it's humid and rainy ... all the better for a bug-guy like Eric :) It sure is quiet around here without Eric, but, I'll be honest, it's a nice break to just have one kid to get ready for bed at the end of the day. Eric fights me every step of the way at bedtime, so it's been nice not having the bedtime battles. Oh, if only someone would force me to go to bed at 9 o'clock every night!
Last night, I put together the pots you see below to take to the Ryan House, courtesy of The Willow Tree Foundation. The pots contain bubble bath, lotion and lavender scented and shea infused lounge socks from Bath and Body Works. I dropped off a set of pots back in April and the word is, the families really enjoyed them. It's nice to be able to support the Ryan House, if only on a small scale.
Tuesday, July 06, 2010
Eric left for St. Louis today to spend a week with our dear friend Peggy. I wish I could have gone with him! He was a pro and wasn't the least bit nervous about flying as an "unaccompanied minor" (at least not that he let on). He arrived safe and sound and I know he will have a fabulous week of fun. Peggy has three grown sons, so she knows all about boys and what they like to do (and she has the patience of a saint).
We already miss his sweet face, but I'm sure he's got Peggy and family laughing at his stories and antics.
Sunday, July 04, 2010
How do we move Jack?
The answer depends on who is moving him. Mark moves Jack by physically lifting him out his bed and into his wheelchair (and vice versa). If I need to move Jack, I enlist the help of Jack's nurse or Hilary or Mary because it's a two person lift for me. I haven't lifted Jack by myself since at least 2005. Jack's nurses move him using the ceiling mounted lift in Jack's room. Yes, we should all use the lift, but I don't have the patience for it. I've used it on occasion when I'm by myself, but I always feel like I'm going to break Jack in half when I use the lift.
Our insurance paid for the lift system. I could have gotten a track system that would have gone from Jack's room to the family room, but I didn't want to destroy the doorways or have tracks hanging from the ceiling in the other rooms of my house. Because we have high ceilings, the tracks can't be installed flush against the ceiling, they have to suspend from the ceiling.
We transport Jack from place to place in our van. We have a full-size van with a wheelchair lift. I do NOT like it. The lift takes up too much room in the van. But, it's served it's purpose, so I can't complain too much. For anyone contemplating a wheelchair accessible van -- get a rear entry lift, not a side entry lift. I can't tell you how many times we are unable to use handicap spaces because there is no space to roll Jack off the lift once it is down. Even wheelchair accessible spots aren't always big enough. Our van has 130,000+ miles on it and we really need a new one, but I can't force myself to spend the $50,000+ to buy one. Maybe someday ....