Sunday, February 28

Hard to Resist

One look into this face, those eyes, and I'd give her the world in a heartbeat.

Saturday, February 27

Oh the Fun We Had!

I'm very tired, so I'm just going to give you a "teaser" of Teagan's "Turning-One-Year-Old" birthday party.

The theme was from The Very Hungry Caterpillar (one of her favorite books) and as gifts, people were asked to build Teagan's library with a copy of one of their favorite books~new or used and for any age group.

I shall now be spending lots of time at her house reading her wonderful collection! She got everything from Hop on Pop to Pride & Prejudice...and everything in-between!

And now for the teaser pix:

(Notice the pink cell phone she carried with her~she's growing up so fast! She spent an hour "talking" on the phone while we prepped for her party!!!)

Wednesday, February 24


February 24th.
2009 & 2010
Where has the time gone??

It's a New Year!

That's right! It's a whole New Year: for Teagan that is!

Today is Teagan's first birthday!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Happy birthday, darling girl!!!!

Your Auntie M loves you!!!

While her birthday party is on Saturday, we (of course!) had to give her a little something on her actual birthday. Needless to say, she was more enthralled with the tissue paper surrounding the gift than the actual gift, but that's ok.

Van was there to watch her open her gift & he got a special gift too~just for fun. He got a surfing turtle Pet Shop.

Here's pictures of Teagan & her gift....

Is she good at shredding tissue paper or what?

While I loved the little pink & white dress we gave her, but the best gift was to us: Teagan herself.


Evening Update

Teagan (and her mama & dadda) graciously invited her Auntie M & Gramma Cindy to dinner this evening to celebrate her birthday.

We went to Red Robin. The place absolutely fascinated Teag! So much going on...

Like the little boy at the table next to ours who flirted shamelessly with Teag. Ah, young love!

She loved all of it...except...the big red robin.
This creature made her bottom lip quiver & big silent tears rolled down her cheeks!
Poor little thing. She kept pointing at it, so we thought she was crying cuz she wanted to go see it.
We were wrong.
We actually had to move her chair so that she could no longer see it.
I see a therapy session in her distant future... (kidding! I hope)

But, as all women know, sweets make everything better.
Since she is now One, her daddy thought it was high time that she try
Ice Cream!
(One of his personal favorites!)

But first, the staff & family sang Happy Birthday while she clapped along.
(Although there was this strange look on her face~
kinda like she was thinking,
"Who the heck are these people?!?!")

Then came the whipped cream:

 Strangely good!

And now for the ice cream...the moment her father has been waiting for:

Another, "What the heck?!?!" face!!

But, not to fear, the yumminess of ice cream
 definitely grew on her....

Yea for birthdays & ice cream & most of all: for Teagan!

Monday, February 22

Dontcha Just Hate It...

...when you spend ALL day having medical procedures and they still can't give you a definitive answer for why you are in pain???

That's right: today I spent the day being poked and prodded--I had a pelvic ultra sound, a pelvic MRI, a good old-fashioned pelvic exam--the whole nine yards. And except for all of that sort of exaspirating my pain, we still don't have answers. Of course, I'm not really being fair: we may have more later this week when all the radiologists have written their reports & my doctor looks over everything.

In the course of all this, however, I've decided that perhaps my new OBGYN up here in the grand state of Washington is not the best match for me. Each time I've left her office, I've left with a sense that she isn't truly listening to me and that I'm being bullied in to doing a health regimine that I don't agree with.

She's wanting to "experament" with some various things (drugs/hormones) to see if we can get the insomnia, migraines, ovulation pain, cramps, & heavy menses (doesn't that sound soooo polite???) under a form of "control." However, my last OBGYN (whom I am really missing right about now) already kinda had me prepared that when all these symptoms returned, that it would be time for a hysterectomy. We did the birth control & hormone experament thing 5 years ago both before and after the surgery I had then.

I was warned that because of my right ovary's love to produce large cysts & my nasty ol' endometriosis, that the surgery he did (a general clean up, I guess you could say) would probably only last me 2-3 years...and, hey, it's been FIVE!!! So I feel that's pretty good.

He probably would have done a complete hysterectomy last year except my neurological state was still to fragile. Now however, I've become more stabilized and all the problems gynochological problems are making me unstable again. (Yes, I know, some of you are thinking, "She's kidding herself if she ever actually thought she was stable!!") So my neurologist says, and I agree, that it's time to take my "female" innards out!

Problem: my new OBGYN is of the opinion that women should keep these innards~even if useless to one such as me (where getting pg can quite literally kill me!). And I experience so much pain in my day-to-day living, that I'd like to eliminate some of it if possible, rather than experamenting about seeing how long we can keep 'em. So, as you may have gathered, we're not quite seeing eye to eye.

And so, I'm going to have to say it's my way or the highway and if she won't do surgery, I'll be hiking around looking for yet another new doctor. Cuz I really need a doctor who will listen to me. And who will listen to my neurologist. I gotta say it: I'm fiercely loyal to the doctor who saved my life & my ability to walk, etc. I know all doctors think they are mini-gods, but in my book, my neurologist is the highest god in my medical hiearchy of gods.

So there!

And there we leave it until we know more.........

However, for my dear friend Ashleigh, and cuz I can't believe the pictures you can find on Google, here's another lovely picture of someone's female anatomy (and their friend, the ovarian cyst.) Ready for it Ash???

And here we have today's nasty picture! Can we all say GROSS?!?!?!?! hee hee
I think shrinks should use this as an ink blot kinda test:
"And what do you see here???....
Ah, veh-ry interesting..."
(said w/Freudian accent)

Are you still reading??? Oh good, cuz how adorable is my niece & her new baby doll?!?!

(double click on picture for larger view)

And now we are through for the day! Wasn't that fun???

Sunday, February 21

Cora's Story

Please, please, please: if you think of her & her husband, send loving thoughts, and tender prayers to my new friend, Kristine.

Their precious daughter, Cora, passed away after 5 brief, but love-filled, days on earth.

Cora's parents are grieving deeply but also fighting a good fight on behalf of Cora.

Please visit Cora's Story to learn more about the impact of Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) and how you can pass the word along to expectant friends & family about a simple test that should be done after every birth that can literally save a child's life.

Keep this family in your prayers, please. They need all the support they can get. And as you do, please remember my brother & sister-in-law too. Grief is a long and weary process.

Isn't Cora a pretty baby???

With much love going out to Kristine & Ben,

Dontcha just hate it when... totally mis-diagnose your self & spend hours at the Urgent Care when you should have been at the ER?

I do.

Totally thought I had a kidney infection. I mean, after having had 7 of them in the past 10 years, I should know, right??? Apparently not!!!

So now the question is: kidney stones or ovarian cysts.

Now, as already stated, I apparently suck at this self-diagnostic stuff, but I'm going to go with ovarian cyst. Why? 'Cause I've already had  surgery for these twice...and have thought that another was in the works...

So, why am I blogging instead of sitting at the ER? Well, I have an OBGYN appointment tomorrow & already have a pelvic MRI ordered so why go today when I can sit at home in comfortable agony versus being miserable at the ER. And with any luck (finger's crossed) I'll be scheduled for a full hysterectomy for sometime soon. (Yes, you read correctly: I want a hysterectomy!!!)

And because of my other health issues (see labels, below), I have plenty of pain meds on hand, so I'm pumped full of those, with orders from the Urgent Care doc to head to the ER if the pain becomes unbearable.

In the meantime, I have the joy of watching my darling niece wander about in the most adorable golfing outfit. SO much better than watching le miserable in the ER!

And now, since this is my blog, I'm totally going to post the grossest picture I could find of an ovarian cyst!

How gross was that?!?!

And now, I will have to leave you in suspense until I know more.....

Thursday, February 18

Blur of Pain

I try not to complain too much or really even mention the pain I live with day in and day out, but today is one of those all-consuming pain days…every joint hurts. In fact my whole body hurts so much that it’s been making me nauseous. My wrists & hands can barely move to type. It’s hard to focus on anything but the pain…I hate days like this.

While I am in pain of some sort every day, days like this have been fewer and farther between. But as for today, I just want to curl up and die. Figuratively of course. But being pain free would be so very wonderful. I can honestly say I don’t remember those care-free days of being pain free. But I know they existed. I hope someday I will experience them again…if not forever then at least for a couple days at a time.
I knew this would happen. I had to fly to CA for a couple days to see my doctors and did really well while there—maybe cuz the trip was so brief. But any sort of stressor, like travel or change in schedule or even emotional ups and downs can be debilitating.

Hoping I feel better tomorrow, cuz I have some funny stories from my brief trip in CA…at least I found them funny. In the meantime, I’m taking more pain meds and am curling up with my saintly mom waiting on me. Bless her heart. My mom is so very supportive of me. I really wouldn't be able to make it without her!
Right now she is doing dishes and washing the towels and rugs from my bathroom…poor things met a terrible plight involving a 5 year old nephew and a tube of toothpaste! But I’ll have to leave that story for another day. Let’s just say Sid the Science Kid probably won’t be viewed in my house or my sister’s for a while as it seems to inspire Van to make his own experiments! Ha ha!!!

In the meantime, this photo may give those of you with keen eyes a clue as to one of my future "funny" stories. Hint: I do not have freckles on my ears and only have one piercing. Can you guess what's going on here???

Perspective Check...updated

What a lovely young woman Eva is; a spirited writer, and a beautiful spirit. She and her "pack" are so brave. I wish I could be more like her. She has an inspiring zest for life even as it slips away from her. Amazing.

Sunday, February 14

Perspective Check

Today has been a difficult day for me for a variety of reasons...from pain to interpersonal relations, but then someone sends you a simple link and your whole perspective on life changes in an instant. I have it easy in many regards...

Should you wish to meet a very brave young woman, who has been blessed to love and be loved in return, the greatest of all gifts, click here. If you are as moved by Eva as I was, please leave her a message of love~quickly

The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation has been close to my heart for more years than this sweet young woman has been alive. I get their updates regularly in the mail. I support them as often as I can. But sometimes we tend to forget why we do what we do. It becomes routine. We forget the passion behind it all. Eva's story reminded me why they do what they do and why it is so important to help them/her in their fight.
Thank you Eva for sharing your life with us.

Tuesday, February 9

Catching the Sun (again)

Remember when I told you, in this post, about Teagan's awe in seeing rainbows dancing around the room?
We have had a lovely winter (as compared to the rest of the US)...rain mostly at night and lovely sunshiney us many opportunities to dance with the rainbows.

It is truly magical.......

Teagan chased the rainbows about the room...

Or sat down in the middle of them....

Or crawled up on Gramma's lap to share the joy...

And later she sat & ate lunch while watching the rainbows & the overhead fan (another favorite from the time she could focus on it), listening to Mozart....

What could be better?!?

And today it was Van's turn to sit in the rainbows. Lovely!

What a great life!

Sunday, February 7

Happy Feet~ Our Dancing Queen

You can dance, you can jive, having the time of your life
See that girl, watch that scene, dig in the dancing queen....

As they say in the special features of Happy Feet:

dancing is all about balance...but rhythm doesn't hurt!

I did mention that Happy Feet is Teagan's new favorite movie, didn't I?
Not only does it have penguins (her favorite animal at the zoo), but the music sets her whole body to dancing!