Monday, January 26, 2009

Change in Mode of Transportation

Clare took a couple steps last week but now is officially walking about 50% of the time. She is pretty unstable still but is getting braver by the moment. It is so cute to see her walk since she is so short. Her little legs are so bow legged.

Concentrating so hard on walking.
Our little walker.

Hi Mom, aren't you proud of me?

She thinks if she smiles then it won't get her in trouble. Since she is walking she has become a lot more coordinated and is starting to climbe in and on top of everything.

Random Pictures

Clare's favorite thing is to look through books.
She does a great job turning pages.

She also enjoys playing her drum.

Reading is so much fun.

This is her smile she gives me when I catch her with something she shouldn't have.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Clare's Procedure

Finally after 10 ear infections over a time span of a month and half, 6 different antibiotics, and many sleepless nights Clare got tubes in her ears. This was an option that we had discussed back in November and had I known how much better it would make her feel I would have opted for it sooner. Of course, no one wants to put there child through surgery especially under anesthia so we were a little hesistant about doing the procedure. Also, try explaining to an 11 month old that they can't eat for 12 hours before surgery. Here is a little time frame on how the day went:
10:30 p.m. Woke Clare up to feed her before she couldn't eat.
2:30 a.m. - 4:00 a.m. Clare woke up and wanted to eat. Obviously she couldn't so we brought her into our bed with us for awhile.
6:15 a.m. Arrived at the outpatient surgery place.
6:45 Escorted back to surgery center and started to prep Clare for surgery. This included changing her into hospital issued pajamas, blood pressure monitoring, and trying to console a very tired and hungry girl. This was about the point that I was starting to get really nervous about the whole thing.
7:15 Nurse comes in to tell us that Clare will be taken from us shortly so that they can start the procedure.
7:30 Clare is handed over to the nurse and carried away. This was one of the hardest things I've ever had to do and I was trying my hardest to keep my composure.
7:45 Doctor comes out and informs us that the procedure is over and he was very pleased how things looked. There appeared to be no significant damage and there was no ear infection. It was very hard to concentrate because all I wanted to do was go back to post op and hold Clare.
7:55 We were taken back to see Clare. The nurse had just picked her up from the hospital bed and she was pretty out of it. She was very disoriented and crying pretty good.
8:30 We arrived home and Clare finally slept for a while.
Rest of the Day Clare was pretty sleepy as evident by the pictures below.

Clare just wanted to lay around most of the day.
You can still see she is somewhat out of it.

Finally, the my little girl gave me a smile.
Let me tell you the tubes have made a world of difference. Clare hasn't had a running nose for over a week, sleeps 12 to 13 hours straight each night, takes two great naps during the day, and is full of even more energy than before. I would highly recommend this for any child that is having chronic ear infections, even though the procedure itself is a little nerve wracking it is nice to have our little girl feeling 100% healthy.

Friday, January 16, 2009

The Best Husband and Dad

Words can't express how thankful and fortunate I am to have Mitch for a husband and father. I've have known all along the special person Mitch is but tonight it has really hit home. He is the best husband and father I could ask for. Today for instance he took the entire day off to take care of me since I had my wisdom teeth out. He has done everything from fixing me food, reminding me to take my medicine, making a bed for me on the couch, and most importantly taking care of Clare. I'm so fortunate to have someone to share the parenting responsbilities for. He truly loves Clare and I could sit for hours watching them play together. He is so driven and motivated. He loves me unconditionally and assists me with anything that I need assistance with. He has such a great faith in God and is dedicated to ensure our family has all our needs met. The amazing thing is that he does all of this despite a really hectic schedule. He is currently finishing his pro cert, working on implementing and finishing his project for his Masters in Administration, leading various committees at school, completing applications for his internship next year (3 total), and finally taking care of Clare. I love you Mitch more and more everyday. Thank-you for loving our family unconditionally!

He just loves doing things outdoor with Clare. Almost every Saturday morning you can find Clare, Gauge, and Mitch on an adventure strolling through Selah.
How many grown men will put on puppet shows for their 10 month old? This is what I walked in on one day when he was taking care of Clare. It was so precious.


Clare took her first steps today. She walked from the couch to the recliner. We knew it was just a matter of time before she would. She is starting to stand a lot longer on her own and will walk just holding onto one of our hands. She still prefers to crawl or to walk on her knees since it is faster. I'm pretty sure she will be cruising by her first birthday. I guess we will be baby proofing our house once again.

Clare's Health

Clare has had her fair share of illnesses over the first year of her life. Although, we are so grateful that none of the illnesses have been terminal and that we have been able to find means to cope with them it has presented challenges. As many of you are aware from about 3 months until 7 months Clare had severe issues with her skin, which got infected and caused her extreme discomfort. She was diagnosed with Mastocytosis in September and the treatment that was prescribed seems to have done the trick. Recently, I have tried to cut back on her allergies meds and she is responding so well to the change. Her skin looks so good and her hair is finally coming in on the back of her head. She has strawberry, blond curls, which I jus tlove. We went for a couple of months with some pretty restful nights, until about mid October.
Clare started waking up more often in the middle of the nights and would randomly burst into tears throughout the day. We weren't sure what to think of it. At her nine month appointment, we found out she had a ear infection, which was the first of six over a five week period. During this time there were many nights spent sleeping in the recliner with Clare, giving her various antibiotics, weekly outings to the Doctor's office, and finally the week of Thanksgiving the antibiotic appeared to do the trick and cleared her ears. I hope she never has to have this type of antibiotic again since it is one administered through a shot. She cried non-stop for a half-hour in the Doctor's office and then you have to wait around to make sure the child doesn't have an allergic reaction. Her infection finally went away but we spent endless hours changing her clothes since the antibiotic gave her the worst case of diarhhea we have dealt with.
Things were good until Christmas break when Clare came down with another ear infection. We were referred to an ear, nose, and throat specialist. He has recommended that she should have tubes put in her ears so on January 21 Clare will have the procedures. I know it is a simple procedure but the Mommy side of me is still nervous since they have to use general anethesia on her. We know this procedure is for her own good and it should help reduce the ear infections. Please keep Clare in your thoughts and prays.

Meeting My Second Cousins

We finally made it over to Mitch's cousin Jeff. He has three kids and one of them was born one month before Clare, Karli Jo. Happy Birthday Karli! (She will 1 tomorrow.) We had a great time. There two older kids, Chance and Kassidy, were a great help with Clare. Clare loved Kassidy.

Second Cousin Karli Jo
Karli pushing Clare on the car.

Kassidy feeding Clare

All three girls sitting on the couch.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Daddy's Birthday

Daddy's birthday was a lot of fun. Grandma and Grandpa came over and we had lots of yummy food. I even got to enjoy some cake. Mom was trying to get me ready for my birthday.

Blow hard Dad!
I give up trying to open the presents.

My Grandpa is more fun than these presents.

Here I am sitting on Dad's lap.
I was trying to wake up so I wouldn't smile.

Monday, January 5, 2009


Clare is getting into everything!

YUM, I love this rice crispy treat! It even tastes better without the plastic wrap.
I love cheerios and ....

even Gage loves them! One of her favorite things to do is share with the dog.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Years!

We had a planned a pretty uneventful New Year's Eve. We went over to some friends house for a couple of hours but we weren't sure how long Clare would last since it was well past her bedtime. She did really well playing with all of the kids. The dads all had fun playing rock band. We were home and in bed by 9:30 in hopes we would get a good night of sleep. However, that was short lived as Clare woke up screaming around 11:30 due to another ear infection. I spent the night dozing on and off in the recliner until 6:30 a.m. with Clare. Poor little thing, it is her sixth ear infection in the last month. She was in so much pain. Thankfully, Daddy let Mommy take a nap the next day.

Mommy and Clare ready to party but all bundled up due to the cold temperatures.
How do you like my raccoon hat?

Daddy's friend Kevin singing.

Clare trying to copy the adults playing the guitar.