Thursday, December 31, 2009

Trying Again in 2010

I guess you could say that is my theme for 2010. I don't really have resolutions for the upcoming year, there is nothing to resolve, but I do have some goals (some would say that's the same thing). I seem to bail out, stop trying or conveniently forget the goals I set for myself each year but maybe since I am actually writing them down it will motivate me more.
1. Daily Bible Reading Now I have tried this one several times & haven't made it through the Bible yet using the One Year Daily Bible Reading Bible, but I am going to give it another try. Even two of the congregations we have attended did it as a group & I still didn't finish. Sadly, I think March was as far as I read & I even tried to double up my readings to catch up but that didn't work either.
2. Losing Weight I know everyone says they are going to lose weight in the new year, but the difference here is I am not going to put a limit or goal on the weight lose. I did set a goal for myself last year of losing all my baby weight & I did that, only now my body isn't shaped quite the same (go figure). Now I am not the exercising type or the dieting type but I do enjoy walking + I have been on Weight Watchers several times so I know how to do it. I just need to get busy. If we had the money I would join WW online again but we don't, so I am on my own for now.
3. Make Money I wish I had a plan already setup for this one, but the truth is I just don't. We do know that we probably will not be able to afford for me to continue to stay home with Emma unless some additional funds are coming in. I was receiving unemployment benefits until Nov. 09 but my benefit year has expired so now I must look elsewhere. I hope to do some kind of work from home, whether its freelance design or some other home business but worst case, I will have to return to the work field (BOO). I did get a book that hopefully will help me Making Work @ Home Work. Oh, if anyone has any suggestions on how to bring the $$$ I am all ears.
4. Get Organized Although I have already started this one by cleaning out my drawers I am not sure what my ultimate goal is except maybe to get rid of all the piles on crap in each room. It seems that the only room that does have a pile of things to sort/organize is Emma's. I have been pretty good about keeping her room in order. Now the office & the storage room are most definitely the worst but the entire house needs a complete overhale. I plan to try to do a little bit each week to get this one accomplished ASAP, the clutter & piles are driving me crazy. We may even have to invest in a storage unit or something since our attic is extremely small. Stay tuned to see how this one turns out.
So that is all for now. It has been probably the happiest & most stressful year of my life & I can't wait to see what 2010 has in store. I do have some wishes, prayers, concerns & hopes for the upcoming year but none of these are things I can control, plan or change so I will leave all of them in the hands of our dear Lord. But I do wish you all a Happy & Safe 2010.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas 2009

Even Emma is smiling for this one.

My fam at Karen & Bob's house Christmas Day, minus Chris (he's taken the pic).

Emma starting to open her presents.

The babies sharing toys.

Cousin Morgan with her basket of food that goes with her shopping cart.

Emma playing her Bee Bop Drum from Santa.

Emma in her new wagon from Santa & her monkey from Paw Paw.

Emma after opening her Sesame Street CD player from Santa.

Emma reading her monkey book from Grammy & Paw Paw.

Emma's remote control puppy from Grammy & Paw Paw.
We really had a great Christmas this year. Emma got so many great things: from Grammy & Paw Paw - a remote controlled puppy, musical marocas, a large monkey & some books. From Santa she got a wagon, Bee Bop Band, books & stocking stuffers. Then from my family she got a Little People Sounds House, Little People Noah's Ark, See n Say Elmo & some dresses.
Tonight we are going to celebrate Christmas with our cousins (Emma's second & third cousins) at Gram's house. I can't wait to take pics of her with cousin Alex, 2.5, Carson 4.5 months & hopefully some of her other older cousin if they ar able to make it.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A Special Christmas Prayer

I come to you tonight with a heavy heart for three families that I don't even know but have still added to my prayers. We didn't become friends with any of the other families while we were there due to the extreme seriousness of most of the cases. Most of the families that were close all stayed together in the Ronald McDonald House & we felt Emma just wasn't sick enough for us to use one of their rooms. There were just too many really sick kids whose parents needed it much more than we did.
As of this week I have heard of three families from MUSC Children's Hopsital PCICU lost their children this since Emma was there. All of these children had the same heart defect HLHS (hypoplastic left heart syndrome) which I am not real familiar with but I do know its pretty serious. I can't imagine the heartache these families are experiences after such a lose & especially during the holidays. If you could say a special prayer for these families, I am sure they would greatly appreciate it.
Hope you all have a great Christmas & Happy New Year.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Follow ups

Emma has had 2 follow up appointments this week, one with her pedi & the other with her cardiologist. Her pedi, Dr. K, thought Emma looked great & sounded great. Emma only has a very slight murmur if any, which is much much different than before. Emma is also eating as much as she was before her surgery in Oct & she has been since we got home from Charleston last week. She got her RSV shot while we were there & we are going to switch her to Pediasure as her milk. Right now she is still getting formula in her bottle but we are giving her Pediasure in a cup at meal or snack time, which isn't going very well. Emma just isn't interested in drinking from her cup at all & when she does its only a few sips. Our main goal right now is to get Emma to gain some weight & how we do it (bottle or cup) isn't as important.
On Wednesday we saw, Dr. O, her cardiologist & he was very pleased with Emma. The notes her received from MUSC said they patched all the holes except 2 very tiny ones & those didn't show up on the post surgery echo. Dr. O did his own echo & he didn't see any holes or blood flowing across the heart. He showed me wear the very large hole in the apex was, its gone, where all the other holes were, there gone. He told me that Emma's case was a very hard one since she had so many holes everywhere & he was very impressed that Dr. B was able to fix them (we all know WHO is really in charge & who assisted Dr. B in his craftmanship). Dr. O also decreased Emma's Lasix to once a day & said he wants to see her again in one month, then he said if all is good he wouldn't have to do another follow up for six months.
Is it possible that our baby girl's heart is normal or at least as close to normal as it can be. You better believe it. We have prayed, cried, wished & hoped the day would come when someone would tell us she is really going to be okay & Dr. O says we are almost there. All we have to do is hold on for one more month to make sure no infection sets in & this will all be behind us. Could we ask for a better Christmas present? Not at all. GOOD IS SO GOOD!!!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

New Words

Our little one is now saying more words & some of them we may wish she had not learned quite so soon. The first one we noticed was while we were at the hospital she would tell the nurses "No". She also has been saying it when we try to feed her when she doesn't want anymore & she said it several times to the therapist on Monday when she didn't want to work anymore. Now as of right now she is saying it in a sweet & pitiful little voice but I am afraid it may change.
She is also saying "more" & its usually when we are reading books. This little girls loves her books & could sit all day long while you read, especially if you sit in the floor with her. We also think we have heard her say "Uh-Oh" several times. We are trying to teach her what Santa says, Ho Ho Ho, but it sounds more her monkey noise than it does Santa.
Now I have saved the best one for last. Last night she said "Dada" several times & man was Chris excited, she made his night. It is so much fun watching her learn & hearing her start to talk. What a sweet little voice she has, except right now its still hoarse.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Home Sweet Home

Yes we are home from MUSC Children's Hospital & I am not sure who is the happiest, Emma, Chris, myself or our cats (we haven't picked up Spencer yet from the in-laws). Regardless, we are all looking forward to sleeping in our own beds & not being woken up every 3 hours by someone needing to take Emma's vitals. Emma got to the point that every time the door opened in her room she would cry, regardless who was on the other side, poor baby.
The word on Emma's heart is that there are no residual VSD's & they didn't hear a murmur anymore. Her last echo on Tuesday showed no VSD's which means that either they were too small to register or the two that were left have already closed. Either way it doesn't really matter because there was no blood flowing across the heart which is a good thing. Her feedings should now start to pick up & her weight should start to climb.
The only issue with Emma right now is the vent apparently damaged her larynx & it may take 4-6 weeks for it to completely heal. She is really hoarse & is coughing a lot but there isn't really anything that can be done for it. If they give her steroids it will only delay the healing process of her heart & incision. They also told us that Emma may have had a narrow airway, which is very common in babies but you sometimes don't find out until something like this happens. She is to have a follow-up appointment with the ENT in 6-8.
Emma also has a follow-up appointment with her local cardiologist next week + she will need to get her next RSV shot. She will also start back on her physical therapy which has really helped her out a lot. Before we left for Charleston she was pulling up & cruising on the furniture in the living room. Emma's therapist is going to be so glad when she hears. She has already tried pulling up yesterday & today but she isn't quite strong enough yet, which makes her mad. Poor thing, she doesn't understand but she will return to herself very soon.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Still in Charleston

The doctors just made rounds & they told us they would like Emma to stay at least until Thursday or maybe Friday. They are a little concerned about her potassium levels which were really low while she was in PCICU but they seem to be coming back up. They also want her feeding & urine output to increase + she had some blood in her poop yesterday that they want to watch for too.
She still has a cough from an inflamed throat from the vent & is running a low grade fever. She is having a hard time staying awake today so she may not feel good. Thankfully the nurses are real good about staying on top of her pain meds so her pain is being managed a well as it can be.
We are hoping Emma will be up for either a trip to the Child Life Atrium (playroom) or a quick walk outside, its suppose to be in the high 70s today but its raining too. She hasn't been very interested in playing with her toys that we brought only wants to read books, be held or sleep. Poor baby, I know she has to be bored & can't wait to go home.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Moving, Gifts, Congestion

Emma is doing really well since her sugery on Thursday. Yesterday the pulled her RA line (measure heart pressure), central line & her blood pressure line. Then she was moved out of PCICU & into a room around 7pm on 7C.
Not long after moving up to 7C a friend of a friend, Kim Kirby brought us a big Christmas surprise. Her & her husband Greg brought Emma a mini Christmas tree & gifts from the Summerville CofC. I had spoke with Kim a few days ago & she told me they wanted to bring us something but I had no idea it would be this grand. A special thanks to the Summerville congregation, your Christian light really is shining in more ways than one. I hope we get a chance to meet all of you some day, your expression of kindness was overwhelming.
Our first night in the room with Emma is pretty tough. Her throat is really sore from the vent, which is normal & expected but she seems is very congested too. Several doctors came to take a look at her last night & this morning & they all agree her lungs sound fine, which is a good thing but she may have picked up something while she has been here. They are continuing to watch her carefully & may give her steriods if necessary.
They also pulled her drain & pace maker wire about an hour ago so now Emma is napping. She is also scheduled to have a chest xray & an echo which are routine after pulling the drain & wires. Sometimes complications can arise after these are removed so they make sure they take a look. Dr. Baker said while doing rounds this morning that she MAY be able to go home but he isn't sure.
All in all, Emma is doing great & we can't thank you guys enough for all the thoughts & prayers that have been on Emma's behalf. She is a precious little baby & we thank God for bringing her to us everyday & granting us the priveledge of being her parents.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Please Remain Calm

is what the docs & nurses keep trying to tell Emma. The recovery for this surgery is much different than the last 2 she has had. They are still keeping her medicated so she will remain calm, still & as little aggetated as possible. If she gets too upset or moves to much she could tear the patches they placed yesterday so they want her to remain as quiet & calm as possible. They are trying to not give her as much morphin but if we can't settle her down they will give her some & she just got a dose before we left at 10:30.
Her temp has come down & her blood pressure came down right before we left but her heart pressure level are still a little high. They may take out one of her drain tubes tomorrow depending on her pressure levels. I also noticed tonight her o2 started had dropped to the low 90s which is okay as long as they don't get into the 80s. I tried to feed her a bottle of formula before we left tonight but she was totally not interested & her nurse said that was fine. She is going to try & offer her one later but its fine if she doesn't take it yet & she probably won't.
The nurse told us all the beds on 7C are taken & she doesn't forsee Emma moving this weekend which is just fine with us. The doctors has orignally told us her recovery wouldn't be any longer than last time but I am already noticing a big difference but of course this surgery was more extensive than I think they had planned. Regarless she is still doing very well considering what she went through yesterday & they are very pleased with her progress, as are we.

Very Pleased

that is the exact word from the surgeon yesterday when we spoke with him after Emma's surgery. He was just beaming with excitement & pleasure that the surgery was so successful. After the last surgery in Oct. he wasn't happy at all & now he couldn't be any happier.
He actually went inside the heart & attached some of the muscles together to cover up some the VSD's + he replaced one of the patches from last time & added an additional one. Although she was in surgery for over 8 eight hours & it was a very long day for us all, she is doing great. Her blood pressure, temp & respirations are on the high side but we just spoke to the cardiologist & he said that isn't surprising with the amount of work they did on her yesterday. They are taking out her breathing tube right now to see how she does & she will most likely come off the vent completely this afternoon.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

3rd Times a Charm

or at least that is our prayer, wish & hope. I told Emma this morning as we got her our of the car this morning in the hospital parking deck that this would be the last time, but of course I told her that 5 weeks ago too. Only God truly knows what the future holds but we have prayed that this will be the last heart surgery she will have to endure. We are very thankful to be blessed with such a strong little girl.
We have received 2 updates on Emma so far & she is doing well. I took about 2 hours to get through all the scar tissue from the last surgery 5 weeks ago & she is now on the heart lung bypass machine. They are predicted it will be between 12:00 - 2:00pm before they are done. I also asked one of the cardiologist yesterday if her recovery time would be any longer since she just had surgery 5 weeks ago & he didn't forsee any complications at all. They are estimating she will be here 5-7 days, so hopefully we will be going home by the middle of next week.
I will post more updates as we get them.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


I must this morning was a bit frustrating & at time a little scary for me, also wondering why nobody warned us this might happen. I knew it was going to rain last night & I even heard it in my sleeplessness but I never expected what we found.
As we ate breakfast on the roof of our hotel that overlooks the river we noticed that traffic was at a standstill & the water level looked high. I heard one of the waitresses tell another table that from the looks of it outside that downtown was most likely flooded but I didn't really believe her. Not that it really mattered, we had to go downtown, that is where the hospital is & Emma had her pre-op scheduled for 9am. We got in the car a little later than I had planned but we thought it was just a traffic jam until we started to notice all the water. Normally it only takes 15 minutes tops to drive, park & walk to the hospital but today it took us 1.5 hours.
I couldn't believe what I was seeing & there were no police out directing traffic but they did put up barracades to close roads, unfortunately all the roads we needed were the ones that were closed. I ended up calling the Same Day Observation Lab to tell them we were stuck in traffic & the completely understood & said get there when you can, so Chris dropped off me, Mama & Emma so we could walk while Chris parked the car. Well we didn't make it very far, a few blocks, before I called Chris & said he needed to come pick us back up. We couldn't even get to the hospital by foot without walking thru knee deep water & we were not doing that, even though we saw many rolling up their pants to do just that.
So Chris came back, picked us up & drove us through the water, to the other side & then we got out to walk the rest of the way. In the meantime, Emma is screaming, due to a dirty diaper + a very sore bottom (a rare thing for her). She actually ended up crying herself to sleep in my arms while we walked to the hospital only to be awoken by a staff member offering to help us find out way around since we came in a side/back door. Once we found our way to admissions, she is screaming again, remembering she has a dirty diaper & sore bottom. I handed her off to Mama for her to change her diaper while I check her in & she is screaming "Mama, Mama" as they walk away. That was a first & it just broke my heart.
So we arrived at Same Day around 10:30am & I heard her cry out my name many more times after that. Anytime Chris would take her from my arms, a nurse or doc would need to examine her & each time it still broke my heart. It makes me feel good knowing she needs & wants her Mama but also lets me know she is started to reach the age of getting scared & unsecure. She didn't cry for me 5 weeks ago when we were here, so she has grown up a lot since then.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Surgery Scheduled

I just spoke to the surgeon & he has scheduled Emma for her 3rd open heart surgery on Thursday. I must say I have never been so happy to hear that Emma would have surgery until now. We were really concerned after speaking with him last night that he may send us home today to only come back in a couple weeks. He normally only does additional surgeries after 6 weeks post-op & Emma will be 5 weeks tomorrow. I asked him if there was any risks we should be concerned about & he said no. He really would like to wait a few months before going back in but since Emma is losing weight she needs surgery now & we totally agree.
I don't have any details on her surgery as for what time but his secretary is suppose to give me a call later today with all our instructions for pre-op tomorrow & Thursday. He did tell us he is planning on patching as many holes as he can instead of using a open heart cathe device. The echo pictures he got yesterday were some of the best he has seen of Emma yet & he told us there are many holes, more than he knew about so it will be a difficult patching process but its the best route for Emma.
Please keep us all in your prayers as we go through this again. We feel so sorry for Emma having to endure this again so soon after her last surgery but is totally in her best interest so she can thrive & grow. This is all for you baby girl!!!

Beginning to look like Christmas

at least on my blog it is, but not at home. I had a little trouble picking a Christmas theme this time but since Emma is really enjoying seeing Christmas trees & we are trying to teach her what Santa says, "Ho, Ho, Ho", I thought this fit pretty well. I am eager to get home & start decorating for Christmas (although the tree will have to be in the kitchen again, still lacking) but also wondering what it will be like this year with a little one who is crawling, pulling up & starting to cruise on furniture (just started that within the last week). I really hope she doesn't use the tree to pull up on.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Waiting in Charleston

Emma had her sedated echo this morning & she did great. Unfortunately we found out that Emma has lost 7 ounces in the last week, that makes 1.5 lbs that she has lost since her surgery.
We didn't get to talk to the surgeon until this evening & he still isn't sure what would be the best way to approach Emma's remaining VSDs. He has been in surgery all day & hasn't had a chance to discuss her case with some of the other doctors on staff & he plans to do that tomorrow morning since he has no surgeries scheduled. He did tell us that opening her up again is the most likely option but he may want to have a heart cathe done first to get more pictures of her heart. He also told us the echo she had today gave them the best pictures he has seen yet of her heart but he may still want more. There is also a possiblity that we may have to go back home & wait a while before the does surgery. He told us he usually likes to wait 6 weeks before he operates again, but he also said that is only 1.5 weeks away & that probably wouldn't make much difference.
So who know what will really happen tomorrow. We are hoping surgery will be planned soon & we don't have to take Emma back home with her losing weight + not eating very well.

Friday, November 27, 2009

My Black Friday

It actually started at 11:15pm last night with Emma waking up but I got her to go back to sleep, to only wake up again at 11:45. I ended up giving her a bottle & then noticed she was really warm. I was really afraid to check her temp but when I did it was 101 & I just started to cry. We had tried so hard to keep her from getting sick & now she has a fever. (This would probably explain why she was so fussy on yesterday & not eating very well.) So I gave her some tylenol, read her some books, rocked her & laid her back down at 1am. To my surprise she went to sleep & stayed a sleep.
Since I was up, I decided to try to purchase a wagon I saw in the Toys R Us sale paper for Emma online but no luck. Their website wouldn't let me buy it online for the sales price + I had a $5 off coupon I was going to use too. So I went to bed unhappy I couldn't purchase the wagon & wondering what I would do in the morning since Chris was going to work & Emma wasn't feeling well.
I actually woke up before Emma this morning & ate breakfast thinking I would either call Chris & ask him to run to Toys R Us or take Emma out if she was feeling better. Well much to my surprise, she wasn't running a fever when she got up & she was in a much better mood than yesterday, although she didn't drink much formula but she did eat 1/2 her breakfast. So I decided to give Dr. O a call & make sure her mysterious fever wasn't heart related & he said she should be fine since it wasn't a continueous fever.
Once I spoke with Dr. O I bundled up Emma & we headed to Toys R Us in search of the wagon. The parking lot of course was packed & the store was trashed with many empty shelves, so I thought for sure all the wagons would be gone especially since its was 10:30 am & they had been open since midnight. I headed to the back where the wagon were kept & the shelf was empty but there was a couple there with one in their cart & they were hoping to find another one. They asked a sales rep to look in the back & they asked me if I wanted one too & of course I said yes. Just as I expected there were no more, so headed on my way.
I stood in the isle & called Chris to see if he could run to the store near his office & then the lady with the wagon in her cart asked me if I wanted hers. I was extemely surprised & of course made sure she didn't really want to keep it but she wanted either 2 or a bigger one. So with much appreciation & thanks I took her wagon from her buggie & told Chris nevermind.
Then I proceeded to the checkout line, only to relize how am I going to do this. Emma was in her stroller (poor planning on my part) & the wagon was in a huge box. The same lady aske me if I needed help & I was a bit embarrassed to say yes & she flagged the same sales resp to help me to the front. Then we found a cart & he pushed it while I pushed Emma. Then I stood the long line with the cart in front of me in one hand & Emma behind me in the other hand.
We finally check out many minutes later & I am pushing the cart & dragging Emma in the stroller, relizing again this was not a well thought out plan. Then 2 ladies behind me in line asked if they could help me & again I was embarrassed to say yes. They offered to push the cart & said they wouldn't touch "the baby." I told them I couldn't believe it didn't consider getting a cart & putting Emma in it & she was shocked I would ever consider it. "You don't want to put her in these dirty carts, especially with H1N1 out there." A bit drastic, but I had no comment to that. I mean I do take her to the grocery store, Target & Walmart with a cart seat cover of course, but we do go out.
Anyway, I thanked the lovely lady, loaded the wagon in my car & we were on our way. Emma fell asleep on the way home, not having her usual morning nap & ended up sleeping for 3 hours with no fever reoccurring, although I am not feeling very well. My throat hurts, chest is tight & congested & I am running a low grade fever. I think the lack of sleeping of me worrying about Emma & getting up with her at night may be taking a toll on me. I am heading to get some drugs to hopefully catch this before it gets too bad & so I don't pass anything to Chris or more importantly Emma.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Being Thankful

I have seen a few people list 50 things they were thankful for & I thought I would try to do that myself this year, but I want to see if I can list at least 75. I have been thinking about doing this for some time, so there is no time like the present. These will of course will be in random order as they come across my scattered brain.
1. My loving husband
2. Our precious Emma
3. Being a stay at home mom
4. Our home
5. Our church family
6. Our families living locally
7. Growing up in a Christian home
8. The Bible
9. God's mercy
10. God's grace
11. The promise of salvation
12. Power of Prayer
13. MUSC Children's Hospital
15. Emma's heart surgeon, Dr. B
16. Medical Technology
17. Emma's cardiologist, Dr. O
18. Emma's pedi, Dr. K
19. Nurses at MUSC
20. Ultra sound tech at Dr. O's office
21. Cardiologists at MUSC
22. My mom
23. The time I had with daddy
24. My sisters
25. My brother
26. My neices
27. In-laws
28. Chris' job
29. Unemployment benefits (although my just expired)
30. Emma's quick recovery
31. My new car
32. my friends
33. my education
34. Faulkner Univ
35. religious freedom
36. holidays spent with family
37. the food we have to eat
38. my marriage
40. Lifetime
41. Dr. C
42. fertility treatments
43. Dr. S
44. MFM
45. adoption
46. Emma's hand surgeon, Dr. G
47. Dr. B's medical team
48. Jesus' sacrifice
49. God's patience
50. God
51. Jesus
52. The Church of Christ
53. The sunshine today
54. The changing of the seasons
55. The right to vote
56. Being able to experience pregnancy
57. My eye sight
58. My health
59. Chris' health
60. God's wisdom
61. God's strength
62. God's guidance
63. Emma's strength
64. Emma's willpower
65. Emma's smile
66. Emma's blue eyes
67. Emma's tentative upcoming heart procedure
68. Emma maintaing her weight
69. That Emma has a great Dad
70. Emma will grow up in a Christian home
71. Emma loves books
72. Emma has no idea she has VSD's
73. Emma will not remember going to MUSC multiple times
74. Our elders
75. Our deacons
I made it to 75 but I still feel like I have forgotten a lot so I may add to this list in the future.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Going Back to Charleston

Yes, we are going back, again. We knew it was possible that Emma would have to go back to Charleston for another procedure within the next year but we never thought it would be this soon. Since Emma was showing signs of her body working too hard again, Dr. O contacted Dr. B (the surgeon) at MUSC & he agreed there needed to be an intervention with Emma. Dr. B called me himself (vary rare) on Friday & asked us to come on Monday, Nov. 30 for a 3D echo & maybe a diagnositic heart cathe. He said once he & his team took a look at the images then he would be able to decide the best way to approach the remaining VSD's. He also told me to come packed & prepared to stay, so we will be there until Emma's procedure is scheduled, completed & she is discharged.
We kind of have mixed feeling about heading to Charleston again. On one hand we know she needs another intervention but on the other hand she is back to her old self. She is pulling up again, playing by herself & sleeping through the night (although she was teething too & that could be part of it). If Emma does have to have surgery it will probably set her back again but thankfully she is a very strong little girl + her PT has helped a lot.
Please continue to keep us all in your prayers as well as the medical staff at MUSC Children's Hospital Heart Center. We are so blessed to have as many friends, family members & friends of friends who are keeping Emma in their prayers. We can truely feel the warmth around us, thanks so much. God Is Good!!!

1st yr old B-day party

I know this post is a bit late, but we have been a little busy around here which I will post about later.
We had Emma's party a week after her actual birthday to give her more time to recover after her surgery & she had a really good time, except at the beginning. She was a bit overwhelmed when everyone started showing up at the house & cried. All she really wanted was myself or Chris but we were still trying to get the decorations up & start grilling. Thankfully aunt Karen took her outside & she finally calmed down.
As you will see in the pictures below she didn't get very messy at all. She really wasn't digging the cake or ice cream unless we would feed it to her & then she only took a couple bites. She doesn't like to get her hands dirty, so I was pretty sure she wouldn't dive into the cake & she didn't.
When it came time for presents, I wasn't real sure what she would do, but she was great. She was intently exploring each one as we opened them & had a great time.
The pictures are out of order, sorry.

Emma's non-messy face after eating birthday cake.

Taking a taste.

Elmo cake

Look cousin Morgan I got a Sesame Street Pop-up Pals toy from Gram.

Emma excitement, not sure what's up with my facial expression.
Cousin Morgan reading a book.

Emma's laptop from Grammy & Paw Paw

Emma's kitty cat, which she loves & sleeps with often.

Elmo remote which look a lot like our TV remote that she constantly wants to play with

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Dying Vue

My 2003 Saturn Vue seems to be on its last leg. We were really hoping it would last at least 2 more years until Chris' truck was paid off, but no such luck. It has been acting up for several months but yesterday & today it got much worse. I asked Chris to drive it this morning & he ended up taking it straight to Saturn for an estimate. Chris was thinking it was the transmission & he was right. They quoted him $5200+ to fix it which it probably isn't even worth that much & there are other things wrong with it too. I am missing a hubcap (we have been calling it the loser mobile) & today the automatic door locks stay locked even when you turn the car off & its in park (not sure what that is all about).

So now our dilemma is do we get it fixed, buy a new car or a fairly new used car. We are not real sure if we can even afford two car payments with me working & I really don't want to go back to work just to get a car. So Chris is going to drive it until it completely dies & I will be driving his truck. Then once my Vue dies I will probably drive Mama's truck until we get something else. We told Emma she may need to stand on the street corners asking for money since she would most likely get more since she is so cute or she needs to get a job as a baby model to buy Mama a new car.

Now I guess its time to start looking at what is out there & Chris definitely doesn't want another GM vehicle. The main reason we bought my Vue was the 0% financing which saved us a ton of money & hopefully we will be able to find that again since the economy is still in bad shape.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Not Again

Well this morning I took Emma for her 2nd RSV shot & her H1N1 shot & little did I know what the morning would hold for us. The first thing they did for course was weigh her which always makes me hold my breath & with much cause to due so, the number appeared. The scale read 16 lbs, 15 oz. I told the nurse that isn't right, she weighed 18 lbs last Wed, can we please do it again. So we take Emma off (naked & screaming of course), she resets the scale making sure its balanced & the same number appears. My heart just sank & I wanted to cry, not again.

Then Dr. K comes in, a little small talk & then I told her I didn't like Emma's weight & could we please try it one more time on another scale. Well we did just that & you guessed it the number was still the same, 16 lbs, 15 oz. So we discussed some things, her mood, sleeping & eating habits, blah, blah, blah. Then I asked her what she was thinking, is this weight loss fluid from the hospital IV's or real weight loss. She feels its both. She quickly went to call Emma's cardiologist Dr. O & he advised us to up her Lasix to 3 x day + to come in to see him on Tuesday.

Can I tell you how exhausted & stressed out we are dealing with this for the last year. We really thought this would be behind us after the surgery. I knew there would be some post-op stuff to deal with & hopefully that is all this is, but we are very worried about our little girl. We are afraid they may put her in the hospital next week if there is no improvement, of course that was not mentioned at all today but you just never know. We try to prepare ourselves for all situations now so we are not surprised. At the least Emma will probably have to have another echo & maybe a chest x-ray next week, is my guess, so Dr. O can get the full picture of what is going on. So if you could, please say a special prayer for Emma + her Mom & Dad. Thanks-

Monday, November 9, 2009

Favorite Things

As you may have noticed I added a listing of Emma's Favorite Things to the side of my blog over the weekend & now I would like to share a little about her favs.

She has always enjoyed books & that has seemed to increase since we have come back from Charleston. Just about the only thing she wants to do right now is sit with us & read books. We are so tired of reading her those books & I can't wait to give her the new ones I found for her birthday at her party on Saturday. I even found a few more today but I may hold them to Christmas. I love buying books for her & especially when I find them at bargin prices. I sure hope she continues her love for books because her Mama doesn't read very much at all, I just can't stay focused on it long enough.

Her other favs are Elmo & Big Bird & you would think it came from watching Sesame Street on TV but you would be mistaken. I found a book for the summer "Nighty Night" that has some of the Sesame Street characters in it & she would squeal & giggle when we got to the pages with Elmo & Big Bird. Now anytime she sees them she has the same reaction & we do watch them on TV now on occassion.

Now her Glow Seahorse she has had since she was 6 weeks old & she can't sleep without it. She stares at the glowing belly holding on to her fins & falls asleep, its quite precious. I will have to share a picture of it sometime.

She has learned about beads in therapy & Leslie uses them to encourage her, which works most of the time. So before we headed to Charleston I knew we had to get her some to play with while she was stuck in her bead. Thankfully it was a big hit & still is. Now of course this is a toy she can only have with supervision so she doesn't put them around her neck & quite frankly she doesn't even know that is what you are suppose to do with them. She just shakes them & pulls them out of her pumpkin & puts them back in, over & over.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Happy Birthday Baby!!!

Where has the time gone? Our sweet little Emma, is one & we are just stunned. It has been an amazing year, though sometimes very tough & stressful we made it.

Today we didn't really do much celebrating, we just sang to her several times & went to the park to watch cousin Kaylee play soccer. We also got her a birthday shirt, which you will see below & her Nana got her a birthday bib but we will use it next weekend at her party. We decided to wait another week before we have a party so she can enjoy it more. She has been quite fussy & probably not feeling well just yet since we got home the hospital + she is cutting her third tooth, poor baby (baby can't get a break).

We will be getting her an Elmo (one of her favorite things) cake, but I am not sure if the decor will be Elmo or not, haven't decided quite yet. It will be a pretty small party, family only & I hope she has a good time. I have already purchased 2 of her gifts & I plan on getting just a few more small things. I am trying real hard not to spend a lot for her on her 1st birthday & to save some things for Christmas, it will be here before you know it.

Emma is saying or at least trying to say several words. She can say "Mama" (her second word), "Bye," (her first word), today she said "paci", & she has been trying this week to say "baby", "ball", "good girl", "all gone" and "all done". We haven't been able to get her to say "Dada" yet, but we are still trying.

This was the best picture we could get. She wouldn't keep her hands out of her mouth. Teething again, poor baby & on her birthday too.

Kissing Big Bird's nose (one of her new tricks)

Kissing Mama

Kissing Daddy, but she ends up biting him, twice. Sorry Daddy.

At this point she has had enough & is about to cry. I tried to get the Elmo balloon in the far left corner in the picture too. Thanks Aunt Karen for the balloon.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Follow ups

Today Emma had follow up appointments with her pedi & cardiologist & she did really good considering she just got home from the hospital & being poked at constantly. Dr. O, her cardiologist did his own echo of her & his findings were pretty much the same as Dr. R's at MUSC. Emma still has at least 4 holes that they were not able to patch & 1 which is larger than the other 3 that they are a little concerned about. They plan on monitoring her to see if they will close on their own which they are pretty sure they will but the larger one may not. If they start to cause her problems we will have to go back to MUSC to have another procedure but hopefully not open heart surgery again. They are thinking it can be patched with a device via heart cathe which is much less invassive.
Now as for her not eating well, Dr. O & Dr. K are both hoping that will turn around in the next few days to a week. They both told us to cut back on her Hydrocodone since it can be an appetite suppressor & rely mostly on Tylenol. Nobody told us her pain meds would effect her feedings, so we were a little shocked & plan to only use it at bedtime.
We also found out that our little girl now a whaopping 18 lbs. We were at the hospital the last time they weighed her, which was Saturday, she was 18 lbs, 11 oz & we all laughed. She was still very puffy from all the fluids & we knew that wasn't correct. When she arrived at the hospital she was 17 lbs, 13 oz & I knew she had not gained almost 1 lb is less than a week with very little to eat.
Emma's next appointment with the pedi is in 2 weeks for a weight check, follow up vaccines for RSV, flu & maybe H1N1 (if available) & her 1 year vaccines. Her next appointment with Dr. O will be in one month & he hopes to decrease her Lasix to 1 a day.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Home Sweet Home

We left the hospital last night at 6:30pm & we are all very glad to be back. I walked in the house last night carrying Emma she started smiling & waving & when we went up stairs to put on her pjs & a clean diaper she smiled & waved again. It made me so happy to know she was glad to be home. Yesterday was a hard day on Emma with all the tests + one final procedure to remove her pacemaker wires & nothing we did made her happy so we were so glad to get her home to sleep in her own bed.
Today Emma has been very tired but has really enjoyed playing on the floor, chasing the cats & crawling again. She has been trying to pull up but she is having trouble with it. I am not sure if it hurts or if she just doesn't have the strength yet to do it but she will be back on track soon. She will go back to therapy again next Monday & hopefully it won't be too hard on her.
Tomorrow she has follow-up appointments with her pedi & cardiologist & we are eager to hear what they have to say. She isn't eating very well & we are a little concerned about it. Dr. R that discharged her said her feeding could pick up as soon as today & that every child is different. We do remember that in March after her PA band surgery it took 4-6 weeks before her feedings turned around & we are hoping it won't take that long this time.
We would like to thank everyone for all their kind words, thoughts, prayers & cards. It is great to know that so many have thinking of us during this time. Thanks also to the MUSC Children's Hospital Heart Center for taking such good care of Emma once again. God is good!!!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

She's Back

Today we have seen our little Emma being herself again. We saw a few signs of her yesterday but today she looks like herself too. She is smiling, babbling, sitting up playing with toys & she even tried to crawl while we were in the playroom but she has mitt on her right hand protecting her IV pic line which got in her way. We also went outside for a short walk again, it was in the 70s & sunny today.
We should be going home tomorrow after they remove her pacemaker wires from her chest & as long as her echo is good. Dr. R said she didn't even look sick today but he wanted to keep us here as a precaution since we don't live very close. She does have a little bit of fluid on her lungs but he says that is normal after removing the chest tube yesterday & it should clear up soon with Lasix.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

In a room

Emma is doing so good. She was moved out of PCICU Friday afternoon & into her own room. A surgeon (not the one who did Emma's surgery) removed her chest tube drain a few hours ago. I had to sit across the room & not watch since I get really quizzy with medical stuff. She did scream of course when it was pulled but since they gave her morphin before the procedure she calmed right back down. It of course still broke my heart & made me cry.
We found out last night from one of the nurses on the floor (who was working in PCICU while Emma was there) that Emma rolled over on her tummy & tried to sit up Thursday night. That of course is a no no since she still had in her lines & chest tubes. I kept asking the doctors & nurses what would happen if she tried to roll on her tummy or sit up & they kept telling me she would probably be too sore to do that, but they don't know our Emma. Now that she is able to roll over, sit up. crawl & pull up she is ready to move. Now the real test will be how she will be once we get home during her post-op period.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Progressing Nicely

Emma's surgery went well & much quicker than I thought. The surgeon was able to patch several holes & removed the band. He wasn't able to patch all the holes due to the difficulty reaching them but they are small & shouldn't cause her any problems going forward. If the remaining holes do start to give Emma problems he would probably just repair them with a heart cathe instead of open heart surgery again.
Right now Emma is doing very well. She slept most of the day yesterday & Wednesday but she is very awake, alert & fussy today. Emma pulled out her IV last night so they had to replace it in her other hand & put a mitt over it so she can't pull it again. I must say she is quite unhappy it too.
They plan to remove some of her lines & tubes today, if all goes well she could move out of the PCICU and into her own room if a bed becomes available. She is just progressing very well.
I would like to ask that you keep all the children & families here in your thoughts & prayers, there are some very sick kiddos here. The baby girl beside Emma, Leslie Ann, may not make it through the day. There is also another baby boy, Josiah, who is very sick too.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Surgery Tomorrow

We made it to Charleston last night about 9pm & Emma had all her pre-op testing today which was brutle. She had to have a sedated echo so she couldn't eat for 5.5 until she woke up from the meds & lets just say she was very unhappy. She was one hungery baby at 12:30 when she was finally able to eat her first bottle of formula.
The surgery is scheduled for tomorrow at 7:30am & we have to have her there at 5:30am. Its going to be an early morning & a long day. The surgeon, Dr. B is predicting the surgery to take 5-6 hours & she will be in the hospital about 5-8 days. He did tell us it is a pretty complicated surgery since her VSD's are inside the heart & not on the surface but he is one the best in the country & we trust him & the good Lord to take care of our Emma. Please keep all of us, our Emma & the medical staff at MUSC Children's Hospital in your prayers tomorrow.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Shots & more

Today Emma had an appointment to get her first RSV shot of the season & to our surprise she was also able to get a flu shot. The ped's office did announce last week that they wouldn't have any more flu vaccines until mid/late Nov. which meant Emma wouldn't get one before going to Charleston for her surgery & that worried me a little until I found out she was able to get her RSV shot. Then while we were in the office this morning one of the nurses told Dr. F that a small shipment of infant flu vaccines just came in, so Emma got one. YEAH!!!

We were also happy and surprised to find out that Emma now weighs 17 lbs, 12 oz. She has gained a lb in a month which is great. Her last weight gain was only 9 oz in a month in a half, so we are just thrilled.

Emma is pulling up on everything & tonight she crawled up 2 of the stairs trying to get to our cat, Zoie (she loves her pets, even Spencer who growls at her). Chris was sitting right beside her while she did it so there was no chance of her falling, thankfully. So once I put her to bed I got out a baby gate to keep at the bottom of the stairs to keep her from trying that again.

She still isn't doing very well with finger foods & doesn't always want her baby food. She is really loving her bottles these days, which is actually good since they have the most calories. We tried transitioning her off the bottle & to a cup but then she would only drink an ounce or two. We even tried pouring the rest in the bottle to get her to finish it off, but she wouldn't touch it. So we have decided to hold off on switching to a cup until after her surgery so she can continue to get the most calories possible.

Can you see her teeth?

Look I am standing & only holding on with one hand. She pulled up on the walker all by herself on Saturday & that is when it all began. There is no stopping her now.

Crawling Emma

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Happy Anniversary

Well actually our 10th wedding anniversary was Friday, Oct. 2 so I am a little behind in blogging. We went out for dinner & Mama kept Emma for us. I think this may be the first date night we have had since she was born, 11 months ago. We had a great time at dinner & went shopping at Marshalls afterwards. Oddly enough we were home by 9pm because we were both so tired. The 10 years seem to have gone by so fast & were great. I can't wait to see what the next 10 have in store for us.

We didn't exchange any gifts & Chris said he didn't want one but I am still trying to talk him into getting something. He wouldn't let me get him anything for his birthday back in Sept so I think he needs something. He needs & wants a new cellphone so that may be his gift. I must admit I forgot to give him his card until Sunday, bad wife.

I really want to get my rings resized & my wedding band fixed. I am still unable to wear my rings since I was pregnant & if you remember I had to have my band cut off. I feel so bare without them & can't wait to have them back on again.

The message dated 10-2 was left by my witty husband & I thought it was cute. It made me smile when I saw it & I had to share.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Teething & Standing

As many may know, Emma is cutting her first tooth at which she is not very happy about. The poor baby has been pretty fussing & is refusing to eat solids but really enjoying her bottles. She does eat Gerber puffs & yogurt melts, but no baby food of any kind. I called the doctor yesterday to ask a nurse about her not eating for a week + & she said not to worry, that she would eat eventually. As long as Emma continues to take her bottles she is getting enough nutrients.
Emma did really well in therapy on Monday. Emma actually pulled to the standing position all by herself Monday morning before we left & I was so proud of her. She only stood for a minute or two & I wish I could have seen her do it but I only saw the end result. Leslie says her stomach muscles are getting much stronger & Emma was even sitting up from laying down on her back, which she has never done before. I was really not in favor of her going to therapy but it has really helped Emma a lot. The idea of therapy made me feel as if I had done something wrong as a mom, but it is mainly because of her first surgery, low weight & low muscle tone that caused her delay.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

On the move

Its official, Emma is crawling & I must say our dog Spencer isn't happy about it at all. She loves Spencer & our 3 cats but I must say they don't share the same feelings towards her. Emma is constantly wanting to pet Spencer & play with his toys, which consist of stuff animals that squeak & balls. Spencer has been pretty depressed & grouchy since her crawling began. We are trying to teach Emma to leave him alone so he doesn't bite her. It looks as if our hopes of Emma & Spencer being buddies may have been just that a hope.
Is is feeling better but she still isn't sleeping very well, at night or during the day. I am guessing its her teething that is bothering her, but she has been doing this for about a month or 2 now. She fights for 20-30 minutes going to sleep at night & for her naps + she isn't sleeping through the night anymore. My oldest sister told me that babies change & become more aware at 9-10 months & their sleeping patterns sometimes change. I sure wish her sleeping patterns would settle back down, I am tired & need some sleep.
Emma's therapy went really well on Monday. The therapist is now working on helping Emma gain strength to pull herself & stand. At first I wasn't real happy about this but after much thought & conversations with my sister & Chris they have help me relize this is for Emma best interest. I was afraid maybe the therapist was moving too fast & that Emma would be walking really soon but it did take Emma 4 weeks of therapy before she started to crawl & she has been trying on her own for a month or longer. Plus walking is a more difficult task to master & she has a lot of upper body strength to gain before she can begin pulling herself up properly. The therapist also started teaching Emma how to hold onto furniture & walk but Emma didn't seem to like it or be ready, she cried. One final thing they worked on was crawling up stairs, which I totally objected to. I pretty much told the therapist I would not be encouraging Emma to do that at home. I do not want her crawling up the stairs, or at least not anytime soon.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Highs and Lows

Lets start with the highs first. Emma is doing so well in her therapy. She is starting to crawl (a few feet at a time) and then she sits back down. The therapist is predicting that Emma will be crawling all over the place by next Monday when she goes back for her next session. She also sat up from a laying down position for the first time on Monday. I can't tell you how proud I am to see her progressing. She has sat up several times since then but I think she forgets how to do it so sometimes I help her a little as a reminder. Chris has found her sitting up in her bed twice this week already so we will probably need to lower her bed. Emma is also trying to pull up to stand but she hasn't quite figured it out yet. One other high is Emma's first tooth has broken through. Its on the bottom left & when it comes in I will try to take a picture of it.
Now for the lows, I have taken Emma to the doctor twice in the past 2 days. She has a really bad cold, low grade fever & vomitting. She didn't sleep very much at all Monday night. She coughed all night & cried. I spent most the night rocking her or holding her to comfort her to relax. When we went to the doctor yesterday Dr. F said her breathing sounded good, her ears were clear & she didn't want to do anything other than see if Emma could work through it. She did say she would have a nurse call today to check on her & if Emma wasn't better or worse she would probably need to come back in. So Emma slept maybe 3-4 hours last night with a lot of coughing & crying again. I did get a call from a nurse this morning & I told her Emma probably wasn't any worse but wasn't any better. She suggested I try a saline solution to try & break up some of the mucus & if that didn't seem to clear up Emma's breating to bring her back in to be seen. So we went back this afternoon & we saw Dr. K this time & she her a little wheezing so they did a breating treatment on Emma & sent her home with an inhaler. If Emma isn't any better in a few days I am suppose to take her back. Dr. K wants to make sure Emma's body doesn't work too hard with her heart condition. I really hope the combination of Emma's humidifer, the inhaler & using the saline solution will help bring her some relief soon. She sounds just pitiful.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

10 months old

Yesterday Emma turned 10 months old & we celebrated by taking her to the park for the first. Unfortunately she is still too small for the baby swings but I got in one of the regular swings so she could at least have a chance to play. She seemed to really like it & jumped up & down on my lap when the swing would stop. It was as if she was trying to make it swing again. We took her to the slide & held her while she went down & she seemed to like it too. One of her favorite parts was this tunnel she could look through the window holes on the side & peek at us.

Emma is getting really close to crawling & is babbling a lot these days. She is finally getting the hang of self feeding but isn't crazy about table food just yet. She is also doing much better with her sippy cup. She had her second session with the physical therapist today (although she cried most of the time) & Leslie could already tell an improvement from last week. She seems to think Emma will be crawling within the next week or two but I am not quite sure. Dr. K (pediatrician) wanted Emma tested to see if she needed therapy & the therapist says she is only slightly behind. Emma will be going to therapy once a week until her heart surgery in Oct & she will start going back to therapy soon after the surgery.

I started putting bows in her hair over the weekend, doesn't make her look so much older.

Sweet serious look with those big blue eyes.

Emma napping Sunday afternoon & cuddling with her bear blanket, she was too cute I had to take a picture.

I think she is watching Spencer or some other children off in the distance.

Here she is waving at her Daddy right before I help her go down the slide.

Look at that sweet face.

See how tiny she looks in the baby swing. It almost came up to her chin. You could have fit 2 or 3 of her in that swing.

Peeking at Daddy

She looks so big here all by herself

Daddy & his little girl

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Surgery Scheduled

I got a call from Dr. B's (Emma's heart surgeon) office on Friday morning & they have scheduled her for Oct. 28. Yes, we will be going back to Charleston for this surgery & man am I nervous. After I got off the phone with his secretary I cried. Now I know the surgery is totally necessary but I also know its very invasive & a long surgery. The up side is we are familiar with the process, the hospital, the staff & this should be the final surgery.
We really don't know what the surgeon will do to repair Emma's VSD's & Dr. O (Emma's cardiologist) said Dr. B may not decide until Emma is actually in the OR. The main goal is to patch the large hole in the apex of her heart & to hopefully patch most of the little holes. There is a possiblity that some of the smaller holes will not be patched but Dr. O said that should not cause Emma any problems + he will be monitoring Emma after we get home Charleston.
One of your goals before we go to Charleston is to get Emma a flu shot. Dr. K (her pediatrician) had suggested at her 9 month check-up that she wanted Emma to get one & Dr. O agreed. Dr. O was also hoping to get Emma's surgery done before flu season but she will be in the hospital at the beginning of it so its even more important that she gets the shot. Now I just hope the pediatrician gets them in soon enough.
So we would like to ask you to keep us, Emma and the staff at MUSC Children's Hospital in your prayers as we take this journey one more time.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Cardio News

Yesterday Emma had a follow-up appointment with her cardiologist, Dr. O & he thought she looked really good. Her breathing was good, her heart rate was good & according t0 the echo her PA band is still in place & doing its job. He was a little disappointed with her weight 16 lbs, 2 oz which is the same response we got from her pedi Dr. K two weeks ago. Dr. O was really hoping she would weigh more than she does but he doesn't think her lack of gaining is heart related he thinks its just Emma rate of growth. We discussed how at this age babies growth starts to slow down & if we should consider doing Emma's next surgery soon or wait till spring. He is guessing that Emma will only weigh 19 lbs by April & wondering if its worth waiting until spring if she will only gain 3 more pounds at the most. He also mentioned there still is a lot of holes in her heart but he couldn't tell if any had closed on their own or not. So he is going to contact the surgeon Dr. B at MUSC Children's Hospital & discuss Emma's case with his partner to see what they think. If the surgery is going to be sooner it would hopefully be between now & November to avoid having Emma in the hospital during flu & RSV season. Chris & I are perfectly fine with doing the surgery sooner instead of later. We want Emma to be a healthy happy baby & for us to all move on with our lives without constantly wondering about her heart, her growth rate & her eating habits.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Short Trip

We took a quick trip to the beach over the weekend with my family & we all had a great time. I was really hoping Emma would learn to crawl while we were there but no such luck. Although Emma did learn to clap & it is jus precious. She claps when I get her up in the mornings, when I am changing her diaper, when she is eating & she clapped when Chris came in from work last night while made his day of course.

Emma is her swimsuit coverup waiting her turn to take a bath & playing with the table Nana brought. (Note the curls peeking out of the hood)

Playing in the sand

Chewing on one of her favorite beach toys, her boat.

Counsins playing in the sand

Visiting Granny Ruth (Chris' grandmother) who lives at the beach