Everything we own in a box to the left…

Don’t you just love when Beyonce knows all the right words to share the big news?  Everything we own is now in a box to the left, right and everywhere else because … (drumroll) …

the McGees are moving!

This is fun, right?

After much deliberation, we’ve decided that we wanted to go somewhere warmer so we are packing up and heading south!   And by south, I mean 3 miles south, but hey – south is south!  #ItsstillclosertotheEquator    #Imsotiredimusingrandomhashtagsinablogpost

I feel like a life change of this magnitude is worthy of a blog post so here goes…

About 8 years ago, Denny and I were freshly married and ready to find our first home.  On a frigid day in January we found our dream home.  We didn’t even need to go to the second floor to know that it was going to be ours.  We loved it!   An adorable colonial home on a quiet street and we called it our own!   It was the best first home we could have possibly imagined… we had parties, we had family reunions, and we had an immediate sense of belonging.  Within weeks of moving in, we also realized that we landed on a street with some of the best neighbors possible.  (Oh, how we are going to miss all of you)  And although we didn’t have family nearby, our neighbors made this feel like Home!

Many moons ago!

In the four walls of our first home we finished our wedding Thank You notes, we finished our Masters degrees and we started and finished countless home projects.  We found the bottom of at least 25 paint cans (I’m not kidding, we’ve painted every square inch of this home).  We changed light bulbs, we changed flooring and we changed back splashes.

In eight years since signing on the dotted line so much has happened.  We found out we would be having a Girl and we brought her to this home.  Exactly 24 months later, we found out we would be having a Boy and we brought him to this home too.  We had long nights of feedings and fun days of playing!  Maternity leaves, dance parties & movie nights.  In our first home we watched our babies grow.   In our first home we became a family.

These four walls have watched us grow, and learn, and cry and laugh.  These four walls have held the most magical eight years of our lives and we are immensely sad to leave.  But waiting just 3 miles away is our new home.  Our forever home!!  It’s cozy & beautiful, and the house number is Denny’s former baseball number, #33, so that can only mean something good.

The new house has more room to play, and more room to grow (another bathroom sure helps too!).  But most importantly there is room for grandparents to stay and make memories with M & M.  Denny and I both grew up near our grandparents and we really cherished that and we want that experience for our kids.  So come on up Nana & Papa and Mamaw & PapPap!  Your grandparent suite (aka bedroom) awaits!

A new journey is about to begin & we are incredibly excited (and sad and anxious and honestly just cross-eyed from packing with 2 toddlers)!  It’s just a whole lotta emotions, people!  In just five days we get a new set of keys and a new set of neighbors (can we talk about how crazy it is that one of our new neighbors is an OU grad?!?)!

So here’s to inevitable chaos & overwhelming emotions that will ensue in the coming days.  Here’s to saying good-bye to one Home and saying hello to the next Home.  Here’s to new projects and new memories.  Here’s to knowing that what makes a home is not where you live, but where you Love.

See you at the new house!

xoxo

Erin

CRAZY Proud of Mitchell!

Hello friends & Hello blog,

I’ve been missing you!  Today I was reminded just how lucky we are when I saw my Memories from one year ago today…  This is what was going on in our world just 365 days ago.  It was a really scary moment in time for us and I have been meaning to give a little update on our best little boy.

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TWO year check-up! Off the charts of cuteness. 🙂

Mitchell Dennis is now TWO and doing great!  We celebrated in January with a rockin party, Elmo style!

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He was Loving his favorite furry friend!

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HUG time!!

In just 365 days, Mitchell has really come a long way and we are SO proud of him!  I was reminded a few weeks ago during an Open Play at our favorite kid spot, Rolly Pollies.  Mitchell went in the bounce house and loved it!   He was bouncing with a bunch of other giddy toddlers, climbing up the ladder and whizzing down the slide. It was a proud moment.  I couldn’t help but think back to last spring when I was next to him in a similar bounce house and it all became too much for him… the other kids, the noise, the heat, the slide… his little body responded by shutting down and then going into a seizure.  We rushed him home, cooled him down and then he slept about 11 hours. He recovered by the next morning. Us, not so much. We were a wreck.

For most of 2016 we walked on eggshells.  Some days Mitchell would be completely fine, then other days he would experience 4-5 pass-out episodes in a 24 hour period with occasional seizures and an occasional hypoxic shock states.  The episodes would tire him out so much that we would have to drop everything and get him home so that he could nap it off.  Leaving the house seemed daunting.  The Cleveland Clinic kept telling us that he would be fine and that he would outgrow it, but we were still terrified.  He was our baby boy and we just couldn’t seem to keep him safe.

Then our pre-school suggested that we call for early intervention services (thank you Childrens Kastle!).   We had no idea that this existed so we did some research and set up his evaluation.  Given his challenges, he qualified.  It felt SO GREAT to actually have some control over a scary part of life… talk about a game changer!   Mitchell started working with up to 2 therapists a week to help him improve his coping skills as well as his verbal skills, and we have noticed some really positive changes!  His therapists are wonderful and gave us the analogy of a stop light… he’s good on green, and okay on yellow, but he’s not good on Red.  If he gets too overwhelmed or stressed on Red his body shuts down and it causes an episode.  So now we have a number of tools to use to help him avoid Red Light moments.  And it’s working!!

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Big Sis helps him to sloooow down when he gets to Red Light moments. Makenzie is such a good girl!

Perhaps he is improving because of his age, but I attribute a tremendous amount of his improvement to his team of therapists.  His confidence has grown substantially – way to go buddy!   And they have given us tools and wisdom to keep our little boy on Green.

So now, we are slowly getting back to regular life.  We might sign Mitchell up for toddler soccer this summer and we may even let him ride his trike without 54 layers of bubble wrap… or maybe not.  For those of you who know Denny, you know that he is Captain Safety.  🙂    But we’re definitely figuring out how to manage fear and still have fun.  He loves hanging out with his big sis and his big cousins and he will do anything to keep up with them!

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Buddies… Ry guy and Mitch Mitch!

 

Love!

We are absolutely counting our lucky stars, and I have a feeling this summer is going to be a good one.  Here’s to spring and here’s to hope!  For those of you going through tough days, just keep swimming!

The Littlest Love of my Life!

Lots of Love,

EM

 

2016, I’ll miss seeing your smiling face around here!

Hello 2017!  The holiday season is over and here we are on the first night of a brand new year.

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Good byes can be hard!

It’s a fresh slate.  It’s the brink of opportunity for more happiness, more experiences & more fun.  But I’d be remiss if I didn’t take a moment to say farewell to 2016.

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We kicked off the 2016 year with a little boy who turned ONE!

January 2016 – my baby is ONE!

There were balloons and cake and a sweet little baby who was barely a baby.  In the past twelve months, our not-so-baby Mitchell gained courage to walk and took off on a journey of fun & exploration.  He’s had highs & lows.  Trips to the park, trips around the block, and a trip to the Cleveland Clinic.   Twenty sixteen shed more light on his syncope and we’ve moved forward with confidence and a bright diagnosis knowing that he will simply outgrow these darn episodes.  He’s moved from the freshman room to the sophomore room at school, and he’s moved from a crawler to an energetic boy who loves Elmo, chocolate & lots of affection (but only of course when he’s not busy playing).  He adds laughter to our lives every single day!

Love!

In 2016, Makenzie Ruth turned FOUR and reminded us just how fast time flies (honestly, wasn’t she just born?).   The year brought her second dance recital, her first exposure to soccer and her continued love of all things related to the summertime!

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June 2016 – Dance recital song was Bushel & a Peck!

She fell in love with gymnastics during the Olympics and she fell in love with the thought of reading & writing during her days as a Senior at her school.   She’s sweet and lovable and someday wants to grow up and be a teacher.  Makenzie is an awesome big sister and 2017 might just be the year that she gets on the big yellow school bus and heads to kindergarten (insert sobs here).

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July 2016 – Being silly in Lake George

Twenty sixteen brought about fun & happiness, and frustration & challenges.  Twelve months with two toddlers included fevers, and urgent care trips and the unanswerable question of how do we balance it all?   Two careers and too little time.  There were late nights and early mornings.  There were wet beds and scary dreams.  There were many, many coffee cups and an occasional glass of wine.  Denny and I fought against never-ending laundry, cranky mealtimes and the expense of two in daycare.  But we also teamed up to ensure a really great vacation to Lake George, outings to every kid place in town, and a ride on the Polar Express.   There were cuddles and giggles and plenty of dance parties.  For me, 2016 brought me to a place of clarity after twelve months of postpartum emotions (more about that someday in another blog post).

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As an extended family, we said good-bye to my wonderful grandfather.  We said Hello to a beautiful foster baby girl.  And we said Thank You, God! when my sweet teenage cousin was given a new chance of life from a heart transplant.  All those involved were humbled by the beauty and wonderment of this journey called Life.

Another passing year made us aware of the struggles and heartaches in the world near and far, but it made us even more aware of the need to embrace the good that will always ultimately outweigh it.

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The good!

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A wise person once told me that if you went into a room with all strangers and everyone dropped their problems into a buckets, you would realize just how much you want your own problems back.  This thought has stuck with me ever since and I hope that we can all keep this in mind as we move forward and try to make 2017 our best year yet.   Imagine how much better our world would be if we could each be more compassionate and more understanding of those around us?

So I wish you and your families health & happiness & fun in 2017!  Cheers to the good and cheers to the bad for making us appreciate the good ever more.  Cheers to the memories of 2016 and the possibilities of 2017!

With Love,

Erin

Turkey Day Ramblings… Put aside your differences and pass that wine!

Breathe in.  Breathe out.  Here we are America.  The Holiday season has begun.  It’s the eve of Thanksgiving.

The eve of commemorating the 1621 celebration at Plymouth in which the Pilgrims and the Puritans came together and broke bread.  They put aside differences.  They put aside conflicting thoughts.  They put aside potentially contradictory religious beliefs.  And they got the party started.  (Cue Black Eyed Peas, Let’s Get it Started).

They passed the potatoes and they poured the wine.  (And although the textbooks don’t mention it) I’m assuming that they then slipped into sweats and made some inappropriate memories over a game of Cards of Humanity.  It was the first Thanksgiving after all, right?

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Fast forward almost 400 years and I want to challenge everyone to get back to basics and get the party started.  Whether you believe in pant suits, or spray tans or neither…  Whether you believe that Bruce is a She or Caitlyn is a He….  Whether you believe in Crest or Colgate, Hunts or Heinz, mayo or miracle whip… Whether you think it’s more the fault of “Bran” or less the fault of “gelina.”  Whether you see the dress as gold and white, or blue and black…  Whether you like apple, or pumpkin or pecan pie… let’s do it up like the Pilgrims and Puritans did hundreds of years ago.

Let’s put aside what makes us different and focus on what makes us the same… the need to be thankful!

Let’s be thankful that being thankful is the common thread for all of us.  Let’s be thankful that we all have the right to be different.  Let’s be thankful for good friends and good family.  Let’s be thankful for Mean Girls and the burn book (because who doesn’t love that movie?).  Let’s be thankful that the bad days make us more grateful for the good days.  Let’s be thankful that our differences are what continue to make this country great.  Let’s put on our fat pants.  Let’s pour the wine.  Let’s make is a great Thanksgiving!

Friends, let’s Plymouth Rock this holiday!

Xoxo

Erin

PS  I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the two awesome kiddos of mine sweetly sleeping in their beds.  They make my heart incredibly grateful every single day!  I’m also thankful for coffee (obviously), a rockin husband, great family and friends, a really cool job and Amazon Prime.

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My Freshman & Senior

It’s funny how the little moments of life are often the ones that become the big moments… The times when your heart feels so heavy with nostalgia that you can barely catch your breath.

I had one of those the other day.  While I was sipping (or more appropriately, chugging) my coffee, while I was singing a song with the kids on the way to school, while I was glancing in the rear view mirror… I had one of those moments.  It was nothing special, but everything special all at once.  And I realized how fleeting these moments are.

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Two car seats, too little sleep, two silly & hilarious little passengers… and it’s all going too fast. Way too fast.

Here’s where we are for the moment… Mitchell and Makenzie are both at the same school.  They spend their days a short walk down the hall from each other.  Mitchell is a one-year-old freshman and Makenzie is a three-year-old senior at their school… but don’t blink.  In just a few days my baby girl will turn four, and in just a few weeks my baby boy will officially be a sophomore.  Crazy!  And then they won’t be a freshman and a senior together until they are in high school around the year 2030.  We will have had at least 2 more Presidents.  There will have been another 13 Super Bowl champs, and Denny & I will be well past our 20th wedding anniversary.  But don’t blink.  I’m sure that will be here in no time.

So for today, I’ll savor this sweet moment of having a freshman and a senior.  Here’s what they are doing.

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My little freshman still loves to wake up well before the sun rises and play, play and play some more.  It’s early but it’s honestly one of my most favorite one-on-one times with him.

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Early bird!

He loves all things sports, and he even gets to sleep on his cot in the ball pit in the freshman room!   How cool is that?!?

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Loving Bills day!

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He LOVES this. 🙂

My little freshman is very active and even more affectionate.  He’s working on learning words and he’s working on keeping up with his big sister.

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He will follow her to the ends of the earth.

He melts our heart on a daily basis and we couldn’t love him more!

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Makenzie, my senior, is turning into a beautiful big girl!

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First day of pre-school – September 2016!

She loves all things creative and can spend hours coloring and drawing.  She is really proud that she can now spell & write her name.

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Makenzie’s dragon. Perhaps it’s a Nile red dragon?!

Makenzie is an awesome big sister and loves to drop off Mitchell and pick him up in his classroom every day.  She usually gets so excited to see him that she sprints to his classroom to see what he did each day.

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They are usually buddies and enjoy most things together BUT on occasion they can annoy each other as only siblings can do.

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A particularly cranky day at Target. Even a trip down the toy aisle couldn’t distract Makenzie from the annoyance of a little bro who kept pinching her.

 

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A better day & a trip to Olcott Beach before the end of summer.

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Denny and I both had a time when our older siblings were seniors while we were freshman, which makes it pretty cool that our kids get to experience this.  Melissa and I spent one year at the same high school and then another year of overlap at OU and these were two of my favorite years of life because it was when I realized that she was a best friend.

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Makenzie sometimes asks if she can keep him forever. I can only hope that she does.

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Off & running!

I hope Makenzie & Mitchell someday look back and appreciate these days together at Childrens Kastle.  My freshman and senior will soon be all grown up, but until then, I’m going to savor the millions of little moments because I know they won’t last forever.

XOXO

Erin

Eight is Great!

Wasn’t is just yesterday that we were worried about the seating chart and the intro songs?  Wasn’t it just yesterday that we traveled to Athens, Ohio to get married?  Wasn’t it just yesterday that we met at the end of the aisle, said I Do and sealed it with a kiss?  Wasn’t it just yesterday that we started our life together as husband and wife and waited for our Someday to begin?

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A rocking party if I say so myself!

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Wasn’t it just yesterday that we honeymooned in Aruba?

And then it did…

Our Someday began and it’s been good and it’s been fun.  It’s been challenging and it’s been emotional and it’s been memorable.  It’s been a Sold sign, a Masters thesis, a flooded basement.  It’s been a few trips to the Caribbean, and a few trips to the ER.  It’s been a lot of neighbor parties, and a lot of paint colors.

It’s been an I’m Pregnant!   It’s been a broken heart.  It’s been another I’m Pregnant, and a lot of pink to follow.

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Party of three!

It’s been baby showers and dirty diapers. First cries, first smiles and first steps.  It’s been breast pumps and postpartum emotions.  It’s been so fun that we did it again.  A little boy, and a little baseball mitt…

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Late nights, lots of coffee.  It’s been ear aches, blowouts, diaper rash, two screaming babies and too little sleep.  It’s been juggling careers, and friends and bills.  It’s been hard at times, so damn hard.  And then just when meltdown seemed imminent, it’s been soft & sweet & real.  It’s been cuddly naps with cuddly newborns.  It’s been dance parties and baby hugs and family trips to the zoo.  It’s been a glance in the midst of chaos.  It’s been an occasional date night.  It’s been Disney and the Polar Express and Lake George. It’s been all I thought it would be and more.

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It’s been tough, but more important than that it’s been pretty awesome.  It’s been us, and our two little sidekicks.  It’s been us, growing older and growing wiser.  And it’s been a walk through life that has long surpassed that walk down the aisle.

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It’s been eight years and it’s been a pretty great start to our Someday.  I can’t wait to see what the rest of the ride entails.

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Happy Anniversary Denny!  There’s none else I’d rather hang out with during this crazy ride called marriage.

xoxo

Lake George Love!

::  The McGee Family vacation 2016 is officially in the books!  It was the perfect blend of fun, giggles, new experiences, antibiotics, meltdowns (toddler meltdowns don’t take vacations people!) and even a few cold Blue Moons.  ::

lake george love

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We only get 18 summers with the kids before they head to college (insert sobs here!) so Denny and I are big believers in taking time each year to get away from the stress and chaos of everyday life.  This year we picked Lake George, NY!  It is less than 5 hours away (a huge requirement when you have a squirmy little boy who despises his car seat) and it offered all types of toddler-friendly activities.

The days leading up to the trip started out a little bumpy with 2 trips to the pediatrician, a round of croup, a 104 fever and an ear infection (who knew this could happen after getting tubes?) BUT we still managed to head to Lake George within 14 hours of our originally planned departure time.  Yes!!

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Here are the highlights for each of us:

::  MITCHELL’S VACATION FAVES  ::

  • Steps that do NOT have a baby gate
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He spent hours going up & down these steps.  It’s ultimate freedom for a toddler!

  • The washing station that people use to get the sand off their feet.
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He couldn’t get enough of this.

  • The hotel water slide!
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He cried for 25 minutes after we went back to the room. This little boy loves to swim!

  • Morning explorations – Mitchell is still an early bird so Denny and I took turns taking him outside each morning.  He loved checking out the property every morning at 6 am   (and once I grabbed my coffee I didn’t mind the cute company either.)   🙂
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“Stay close Mom, we’re heading into the woods!”

 

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No line for the slide at this hour!

  • And oddles of fun on all the kiddie rides!
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These two had a blast at the Magic Forest, which was perfect for the kiddos!

 

 

::  MAKENZIE’S VACATION FAVES  ::

  • The beach!   She loved playing in the clear waters of Lake George and playing in the sand.  She made a giant castle for “Punzel” aka Rapunzel.
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Beach baby 🙂

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After the castle came the creation of Lake Daddy, appropriately named after the lead digger on the project.  Mitchell even left the steps and the foot washer to get in on the fun.

  • Visiting Santa at North Pole, NY!   We realized that Lake George was within a short drive of where Santa lives so we had to stop by and say Hello to our favorite jolly old guy.
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Asking Santa for a balance beam

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Here’s a shot of Santa’s house in case you were wondering.  It’s a 1 bed, 1 bath little home with great curb appeal and solid schools.

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The flying bobsleds!

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Who doesn’t love a holiday moose?!?

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Christmas carousel with Daddy!

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Blitzen was hungry!

  • More rides at the Magic Forest and the giant 4-story slide that she bravely went down about 20 times.
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She flew down this slide then got up and ran back up the stairs for more!

  • And a giant lollipop, yum!
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She requested that the lollipop also be in the picture with her. 🙂

 

Admittedly, Denny and I are exhausted from chasing these kiddos around a non-baby-proofed hotel room but we had a really fun vacation too.  Here are our highlights of the trip.

::  OUR VACATION FAVES  ::

  • Housekeeping and no cooking for a week!   Be still my heart.
  • Beautiful scenery.  Lake George is undoubtedly a gorgeous area to visit.
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Picture taken in Lake Placid (in full disclosure the picture was taken from a moving car with two squirmy kiddos in the backseat en route to Santaland – site seeing didn’t exactly occur on this trip)

  • One-on-one time with the kiddos.  We each had an individual “date” with the kids.  Kenzie played her first round of mini golf on her night with Denny, and I took her to see the boats in the lake.   Mitchell and I had a chance to dip our toes in the water and dance on the beach to some live music!

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  • A few days away from the normal stresses of life – no work, no bills to pay, no dishwashers to unload.  Talk about bliss!
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Family time rocks!

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We are super grateful to have had the chance to get away to Lake George and we can’t wait to go back again soon!

Vacation love,

Erin

Life in the slow lane, and that’s okay with me

Sweet, sweet summertime.

A little thing in life that I have come to adore is the smell of my babies covered in sunscreen.  It usually means that we are on the brink of leaving for a fun day – swimming, riding beep beeps at the kiddie park, or running through the splash pad.   Some of the best memories that we have made with the kiddos involved the use of sunscreen.

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This summer has been a little bit different than we expected and we haven’t quite used as much sunscreen.  Mitchell’s episodes have gotten worse (more about those here) – more frequent, worse in duration and still plain scary to see – so we have toned it down and shifted to the slow lane.  It’s hard to say what will trigger an episode, but we know that they are exacerbated when he is overtired, overwhelmed, or overheated.   Although they have no consequences on him in the no-long term, they are exhausting on him in the short-term and often lead to an immediate nap.   In general they are something we strive to avoid at all costs.

But in a weird way, there is a silver lining to this whole situation.  His breath-holding spells (which fortunately will subside in the coming years, hooray!) have helped us find fun things to do close to home and within our normal routine.  Rather than spending hours chasing down fun or pushing the limits with schedules and activities, we have been able to savor the little parts of life.

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These two! 🙂

We have been living up summer with two toddlers in small ways.  Water balloons, hide n seek, walks around the neighborhood, indoor Olympics, tunnel races, short (yet sweet) trips to the kiddie park and extra story times.

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Sweetest & happiest boy ever!

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Water balloons!

 

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Imitating Big Sis during the indoor Olympics

Kenz had her dance recital in June and is now loving “nastics” class so she hasn’t noticed the slow pace.   In a few weeks we’re even hitting the road to enjoy the slow pace in Lake George, which I’m pretty sure will be good for all of us.  And it may include sunscreen, but if it doesn’t that’s okay too.

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Such a proud night

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Loving “nastics!” and getting excited for the Olympics!

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So here’s to a great summer!   Here’s to enjoying life, being silly and making memories in unexpected moments.  Here’s to getting out and wearing sunscreen, and here’s to staying in and having just as much fun.  Here’s to trips near and far, and loved ones on our street and on our minds.  Here’s to life in the slow lane and here’s to appreciating it.

And here’s to all of us taking a deep breath and just focusing on the really good stuff in life.

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slow down

Cheers & love,

Erin

 

:: Life Lately ::

Gosh, these kids of ours make life fun!

It’s crazy and tiring… there’s sippy cups and toys everywhere… we’re sometimes stressed and often tired…

But we LOVE it!!

::  A rare slow moment of snuggles in the midst of a busy weekend. ::

 

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Blogging has sadly been moved to the (way) back burner, but here’s what’s happening in our little world…

Mitchell Dude!

Mitchell is officially healthy!!   We are so incredibly relieved and happy.  Friday was (hopefully) our final trip to the pediatric cardiologist where he received a perfect report on his EKG and echocardiogram.   This means that the expected diagnosis of cyanotic breath holding spells is the official outcome.  He’s still having pass-out episodes but now we know exactly what it is.  (Insert huge sigh of relief)  In two weeks he gets tubes put in to dodge to pesky recurring ear infections and then we will be ready for a summer of fun!

In other fun updates, he is walking all over the place.  His cute baby legs can’t get him places fast enough and we know that the running phase is next.  Might be time for the baby leash!

::  How lucky am I that this little boy likes to hold my hand? ::

His personality is emerging and he is so sweet and lovable.  He is full of smiles & giggles and often gives big wet kisses.  I couldn’t imagine life without this hilarious little guy.

::   Mr. Giggle Pants   ::

Mitchell has a huge heart for all animals!   He adores our kitty and he loves trips to the zoo.  Yesterday he spent about 5 minutes just pointing and petting the Target dog.  One more reason to love this place!

::  Mouth open and drooling… that’s the same thing that I do while I’m in the Target dollar shop.  ::

Makenzie Ruth

Not even sure where to start with this girl, or should I say teenager/threenager?  She has become so smart and determined and independent.  We are slightly sad to see our baby girl growing so quickly, but we are so thrilled to see her turning into such an awesome little girl.

::   Purse full of toys – check! Big kid puffer vest – check! Ready to go – check!   ::

Makenzie is full of love & affection and spunk & humor!   She continues to be an awesome big sis and gives Mitchell tons of daily hugs and kisses (even when he is too busy playing and has no interest in her smooches).

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::  Hugs for the little bro!  ::

In just 3 weeks our girl is going to be in her 2nd dance recital.  Last year we were in Mommy & Me together, but this year she will be dancing with just her friends up on the big stage.  I’m pretty sure I will need some tissues watching this little tapper.

:: Cheese! ::

Kenz is a great helper and loves to run errands with me.  This weekend at the grocery store she even picked out her very own sponges so that she could help me clean the floors (score!).  Secretly I think she wanted to pretend to be in the movie Annie because when we got home she asked me to turn on Hard-Knock Life while she scrubbed the floors.   🙂

:: Gotta love the beep beep carts! ::

One of Makenzie’s favorite things to do is hang with the neighbor kids!  She is our version of neighborhood watch patrol and she always tells me who is coming & going.  She loves to yell out the window when the kids are getting on and off the bus, and she is even happier when she gets to play with them.  Luckily, they are all AWESOME and they let her tag along with the fun.

::  Abbi, Kenz, Strawberry Shortcake Bailey (aka the Cabbage Patch doll) and Will. 🙂   ::

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We are super excited for a fun summer with these two.   Here comes the warm weather!!

:: Warm weather, Woo Hoo!! ::

Have a great week!

Love,

Clarity about Mitchell!

Clarity!  What a beautiful thing.

It’s been a long & emotional few days but given the huge amount of support we’ve received lately, I owe a blog post to give updates on what we discovered at Cleveland Clinic.

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On Sunday we headed to Ohio in preparation for our visit to the Cleveland Clinic on Monday.  Some time with Nana & Papa always makes things better, especially on the day before an important doctors appointment.

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“Can you turn on Elmo, Mom?”

There is no doubt that the Cleveland Clinic is amazing.  We met with a fantastic pediatric neurologist who did an incredibly thorough job of understanding what’s going on with Mitchell.  Here’s what we learned:

  • Mitchell is experiencing cyanotic breath holding spells.  These are usually caused by either a change in the child’s breathing or a slowing of the heart rate. These reactions may be brought on by pain or by strong emotions.  In cyanotic spells the child’s face and lips turn blue and then they lose consciousness.  And in case the doctor wasn’t sure, Mitchell confirmed that it was cyanotic when he passed out smack dab in the middle of the appointment while the doctor was in the room.  Good timing little buddy!
  • As for the suspected seizures, it’s not what we thought.  Mitchell is actually experiencing hypoxia due to the lack of oxygen during the breath-holding spell.  Think of a computer rebooting.  His body is doing the same thing after some of the episodes.  Although he is not responsive while in this hypoxic state, the Dr. said this is not harmful because he is breathing.  I’m not exactly comfortable with this yet, but we will take it one day at a time.

 

We have a few more tests to confirm everything we discussed, and then it’s back to normal.   Or our new normal as I’ll call it.  Unfortunately this might get worse before it gets better because this type of situation peaks between 18 months – 3 years so we are preparing to have many days with many pass-out episodes.  It gives Terrible Two’s a new meaning.   But by age of 6 or 7 at latest this should go away completely.  Hooray!!

So now we do our best to manage this.  To be honest it feels slightly overwhelming right now, but we will just take it one day at a time.  There is a huge part of me that wants to snuggle him up forever and never let him go, but I realize it’s just not possible.   So we will choose to focus on the good!  And there is plenty of good for this cute, sweet, lovable baby boy of ours!   And despite the fear this causes, we are SO incredibly lucky!   Mitchell is able to live a normal & happy life, and we finally know that this is not going to cause him any harm.

On another note, Mitchell just can’t stay away from the doctors office (perhaps he will go to med school someday?).  Tonight we found out that both he and Makenzie have left ear infections.  Looks like we might be headed for tubes in his ears.

Our deepest appreciation for all the thoughtful notes and positive thoughts!

Much Love,

Erin

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For you Little M