Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas!

From our family to yours :-)

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Family Update

So maybe I should just shoot for posting on my blog once a month? Ugh...I can't believe it's been exactly 2 months since my last post. AND I left you all hanging with Izzy's health! I'm very sorry about that. Honestly I forget I'm not Facebook friends with everyone sometimes! I update that all the time. A lot has happened since October 22 when I last here is our November & December in review for you :-)

Izzy's health is GREAT! We got the PICC line taken out on November 1st, after having it for 6 weeks. It was a long and exhausting six weeks of meds and appointments. I am again reminded of how blessed we are to own our own business and homeschool our children as we go through trial such as this. In those 6 weeks there were many times when we need time off work and days just to rest...and because we are completely in control of our schedule we can! I am VERY thankful for that! It was just one less stress to worry about. It has now been 6 weeks without the PICC line and/or meds and Izzy continues to be healthy. He is back to his normal self and mobility is no exception. :-) We are all thankful for your thoughts and prayers during that trying time.

On November 3rd we left for a 10 day road trip to Disneyland!!! A much anticipated trip for our whole family! (And praise God that Izzy was healthy before we left!). Our time was magical in every way. We packed so many memories into our 5 days at Disneyland & California Adventure that will always live in our hearts. Watching all three of our children so full of excitement and joy was unmeasurable! Izzy loved Cars Land, Rachel loved the Princesses, Jaxon loved Star Tours! Really there wasn't anything we didn't love :-) We feel very blessed to have been able to take this special trip together.

 Thanksgiving was a beautiful day. We hosted it at our house and enjoyed a relaxing day with treasured family members. Although we missed those who live in other states!

 Rachel has started taking dance lessons this year and absolutely loves it! We found her passion for sure! She is taking Hip Hop :-) She started out in level 1 with NO dance experience, and after 3 months was moved up to lever 2 because she is doing so well. On December 1st she had her first performance, The Snowman's Dance. It was a beautiful program and she did awesome. Loved every minute of being on stage!

Christmas Events:
The day after Thanksgiving we set up and decorated the tree and house for Christmas. Much to everyones disapproval (except mine) we got an artificial tree this year. SO much less hassle, and it looks beautiful. All three kiddos also got their own tiny trees to put their own ornaments on :-) As well as decorations for their rooms.

As we do every year, we went with my sister and her girls to visit Santa. This is always such a magical time of year and I love watching my children experience childhood fantasies. I know too quickly they will grow up and no longer want to do things like this, so I cherish every moment of it.

Rachel and I had our second annual baking day together! Such a blessing to have a daughter and make memories like these. We spend the whole day making sugar cookies, cake & brownie pops, white chocolate peppermint fudge, and marshmallow gingerbread men. SO much fun!

We celebrated Christmas with Jon's family early this year as they will be traveling to visit family in Indiana & Ohio. At first I wasn't sure I would like it being so early before Christmas, but actually it was wonderful! It has helped to spread out the holiday and gift opening! Giving the kids (and us) more of an opportunity to enjoy each event instead of feeling like we are rushing onto the next one.

I have so many more things I want to write I will try hard to start blogging more regularly again. Thanks for sticking with me and understanding that life happens and blogging often doesn't.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Update on Izzy


*Flash update...we are home and no surgery was needed!*

I was having major Internet issues at the hospital and I truly didn't have the time or energy to work around it. It was all I could do to even post a small Facebook update...and even that was challenging at times! Below I have added my Facebook updates for those who would like the details and play-by-play on our hospital stay.

Thursday morning - Izzy update #2: They have taken him back for sedation, MRI and PICC line. I probably won't hear from them for a few hours. Please be praying they can get his IV in quickly and easily (they were unable to get one in last night), that the MRI comes back with good results, and that they are able to place a PICC line with no problems. I will update as I know more. (Please know I love hearing from you! It lifts my heart and reminds me how many people we have loving and praying for us. Helps me to not feel alone (Jon is working today). If I don't respond please know its only because I don't have the time or energy. Love you all!)

Thursday afternoon - Back in our room, trying to come out of sedation still. MRI went well and the results are looking positive! PICC line was placed on the first try! We just ordered lunch and are watching movies. Thank you for the continued love and prayers!

Thursday evening - Izzy update #3: (I have been trying to post this for HOURS, having major Internet issues!) Whew…what a long and exhausting day…but I have GOOD NEWS!!! The MRI came back and it looks good. NO surgery is needed. HUGE PRAISE! Thank you everyone for your prayers! His labs and MRI showed infected fluid in his knee, but not nearly as bad as last time. No infection in the bone. Another HUGE PRAISE! Because of these things they are feeling hopeful that going back on IV antibiotics will be a great option for him. They are wanting us to plan on doing them for 6 weeks and following up weekly with a home health nurse as well as bi-weekly at Doernbecher’s. And…we get to go home tomorrow!!!

Thursday - How wonderful to have visitors...especially these ones! Auntie MoMo and HayHay came to see us! Izzy loved seeing them and playing together.

Thursday - BEST Izzy quote of the day "Mommy, I'm proud of you." What a sweet boy I have. :-) I love watching his personality and character developing. Even through hard times like these he is being made into the little boy God designed him to become.

Thursday 9:00pm - Goodnight world...we have a big "No Vitals at Night" sign on the door and we plan to sleep peacefully (well as much as we can in a hospital). Can't wait to go home tomorrow!!!

Friday 11:30am - And we are out of here!!!! A more detailed update will come later.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Back at the Hospital :-(

*The first two paragraphs were from Facebook posts earlier today...the last one is brand new details.*

(Facebook post from 6:00 am) PLEASE PRAY for Izzy! Last night as I was putting him to bed I noticed his incision site looked a little red and his knee felt warm (like it did when this all started!). I tried not to freak out and put him to bed. He woke up around 5am crying because of pain in his knee...he hasn't done this since surgery. Obviously something is very wrong. I called and talked to a doc at Doernbecher's and we decided I would take him to see our pediatrician first thing today, and then most likely head up to Doernbecher's and be admitted to the hospital. She is thinking he will need a new PICC line put in and do IV meds again. Clearly his body didn't like the switch to oral meds and this is how it is letting us know. I am very sad and scared. What we went through was so traumatic and I can't imagine doing it again. We were supposed to be done with meds this Friday and the countdown had begun. Please be praying for this situation. Thank you friends!

(Facebook post from 10:30 am) Here we go again with the Izzy Updates...sad! We are on our way to Doernbechers to be admitted. They are going to do an MRI of his knee, draw fluid from it, place a new PICC line and do labs. I was told to pack our bags and plan to stay a while. Not sure exactly how long that is...but I'm sure I will learn soon enough. Depending on what the MRI shows they may have to do another surgery. They are thinking the bone is now infected :-( thanks for all the love and support!

(New update on to my blog at 9:30 pm) Izzy update #1: (Lol…not sure what to number the updates so I decided to just start over at 1. Also I had a big update written when I finally had a few minutes and the computer froze and I lost it. So, sorry for the delay) We finally got in a room around 4:00 (After waiting 4 hours). We met with tons of doctor people as usual and got a plan in place. They gave him a shot of antibiotics that they warned me was slow and painful. At that time they also drew fluid from his knee for testing. Both of these were awful as he was fully awake and aware and without pain meds. I cried right along with him. It took about 30 minutes to get him to calm down and relax afterwards. I insisted on strong pain meds at that point and they gave us Tylenol. I’m still fighting them to give us something stronger but they won’t! Now they are going to put an IV in his head and draw blood and start fluids, antibiotics and other things. Once they know more from the labs they will decide if they are doing surgery tonight or tomorrow and to what extent. They will also know if the infection has indeed reached his bone or just still in the joint. Tomorrow they will sedate him and put in a PICC line and do an MRI. I have been by myself all day and I’m not doing very well and struggling to keep it together. I broke down with Izzy and we both cried in each other’s arms. I was sobbing and telling him how much I love him and how proud I am of him and such things. After a bit he looked at me, held my face and said “Mommy, be brave.” Oh my heart! I told him I would be brave for him if he would be brave for me. I called Jon and told him I can’t do this alone. He is here now and with Izzy as he is getting the IV put in. I am in the quiet lobby trying to relax my busy mind and still my anxious heart. Trusting that God has it all under control…even though I feel so very out of control with it all right now. I will keep you posted as I can…but haven’t had more than a minute or two to stop and do much of anything else.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Israel Post Surgery Update

(Again...updates from my Facebook page.)
Update #11 Today has been a very good day, but also very long. Izzy was able to get his splint and drain line removed (and it wasn't painful...huge praise!) We have found a good pain management system to keep him feeling good (another praise). He is eating and drinking pretty normally (Praise). Jon took today and tomorrow off work to be here with us (Another big praise...we love owning our own business!) We saw SO many different medical people I couldn't even begin to list them, but they were all good (praise). We still don't know what the infection is or the cause of it. Nothing is showing up on the labs, which is why we are still here. We are PRAYING they find out tomorrow so we can go home, if not we will stay another night. We played a LOT in the playroom...Izzy loves it in there...and we also watched a few movies. Plus...we had visitors! So wonderful to see familiar faces and talk with people we know. Thank you Kimella & Bryan,  Leyla & Ari, Sue (Nana), Don (Papa), Jesse, Rachel & Jaxon for coming today and for all the lovely treats you brought us. We are blessed! Lots of praises in todays post...thank you for keeping us in your prayers!

Lots of sleeping for this little sweetie!

Skyping with Sissy & Bubba sure did help!

Izzy & Daddy time

 Mommy & Izzy were best friends through all of this!

HOORAY for finally getting outside! We missed those smiles!
Playing in the hallway with Daddy! More smiles!

Update #12 WE ARE GOING HOME TODAY!!!!! (most likely this afternoon) We are just a "little" excited about it! We will meet with the doctors again today and learn everything we need to do/expect and get the last of the details from the lab results etc. We will be going home with the PICC line in and we will administer the IV antibiotics every 8 hours for the next three weeks. After that we will come back for follow up appointments. Thank you again, truly...thank you for everything you have done for us through all of this. It doesn't matter if you have come and visited, sent messages, texts, calls, said prayers or whatever...we are thankful! It has made such a difference for us. Much love to all of you!

"I'm going home and this is how excited I am about it"

Update #13 We are HOME! We got home around 5:00 this evening after a long and uneventful day. On our way home we stopped at the home health nurse place to get all the meds and training on how to administer Izzy's IV meds. Once we were home I was struck with overwhelming exhaustion and yet there was so much to do and get done at my house. I found a balance with getting a few necessary things done and yet relaxing as well. Rachel & Jaxon are home, it was so wonderful to see them again! All the kiddos are sleeping and I have my alarm set for 1:30 am to give Izzy meds (which will take 25 minutes). Wow...what a long and unexpected 5 days we just had. We are very thankful to finally be home and cannot wait to sleep in our own beds tonight! Thank you again for all your love and support! HUGE Thank You to Nana for keeping Rachel and Jaxon for 4 days and also to my sweet friend Brandi for taking them all day today (even though she had so much of her own things going on) and spoiling/loving them very well. What a blessing to have such great friends/family in our lives. (wondering if I should stop numbering them since we are home
Update #14 We made it though our first night and full day at home. It is going to be a bit of a balancing act figuring out the scheduling of meds and getting our life to work around them. Izzy is doing well, although struggling to adjust to the fact that life isn't quite back to "normal" just yet. He can get around, but it's a lot more challenging for him and he often sadly says "I can't walk Mommy" :-( He also isn't a huge fan of sitting still for 30 minutes twice a day during his IV med time (the third one we get to do while he sleeps, so that's great!). I organized all the medical equipment and stuff that goes along with it. I also downloaded an app for my iPhone that reminds me when it's time for Izzy's meds and keeps track of everything for me! (Thank God for technology!) We were ALL catching up on sleep last night and it felt amazing! Rachel slept 12 hours, Jaxon slept 13 hours, and Izzy slept 13 1/2 hours!!! Then he took a 3 hour nap! We appreciate your continued prayers as we all adjust to this new lifestyle. Love & Blessing!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Unexpected Turn of Events - Emergency Surgery

I have been wanting to write a post since all of this began on Friday, but truthfully I have NOT had enough time. So for now, I am going to copy and past all of my Facebook updates to here so those of you who are not friends with me on Facebook can get a little idea of what's going on in our lives right now and be up to date :-)

Izzy update...we went from our pediatricians office to Doernbechers ER...we are currently waiting for the doctors to come up with a plan. He either has an infection in his knee joint or something else similar. I love it here and know we are in good hands. I will keep you posted as I know more. (Thankful for my sister who dropped her plans to be with me!)

Izzy Update #2...Whew, Been a LONG evening! Here is the short version. We have seen a whole bunch of people here at Doernbecher's and the plan we came up with was to sedate Izzy, draw blood (they have to do it from his head), put in an IV (which they also have to put in his head), and take fluid from his knee joint to test for infection. I stayed in with him for that and it was awful! It was exhausting for the hour after sedation as well. He is finally sleeping (thank you morphine!) and we are waiting to hear back from the test results. If it is infected they will take him into surgery tonight. I will keep you posted. THANK YOU for the prayers!

Izzy update #3 - After 7 hours in the ER we were finally admitted to the hospital. They moved us to a normal room, he is still sleeping well. We got the quick lab tests back from the fluid they took from his knee joint and his white blood count is very high...but they haven't yet decided if they want to do surgery or try antibiotics for 48 hours. They are very curious to see what the "long term" lab tests show, that take 24-48 hours. So far they started him on IV antibiotics. My sister went home to get some rest. Rachel & Jaxon have spent the day/night with Nana, and Jon and I are going to attempt some sleep. Thank you for your continued prayers.

Izzy update #4 Good morning world!!! Or something like that :-) last night was terrible, I think we might have got 2 hours sleep...otherwise it was in 10-15 minute increments between crying. I'm exhausted and needed to get some food so I left Jon with Izzy, of which he cried. The plan is to send Izzy to surgery sometime this morning to clean the infection out of his knee. Will keep you posted.

Right before surgery...but after being given "goofy juice" to help him relax.

Last kisses from Mommy before heading into sad!

Izzy update #5 HE IS IN SURGERY NOW! Please be praying. I should hear from them in about an hour. They are making an incision in his knee, flushing it out and then rinsing it with antibiotics. Then they will place a drain in it to be left in for a few days. They said we should plan to be there through Tuesday! Whew...this weekend sure didn't turn out the way we had planned. Thanks for your prayers.

Izzy update #6 Surgery is done, everything went great. We talked with the doctor and he was happy with how things went. He has a huge bandage (more like a soft cast) on his whole leg and a drainage tube in his knee. They are doing more tests on new fluid. He is still out...I know when he wakes up thing will be hard!

Post surgery
Update #7 Izzy is still resting well, woke up once quite upset but went back to sleep. Unfortunately the IV in his head stopped working and they were unable to get another one in. Due to the fact that he will need IV antibiotics for a few days, pain meds and fluids they have decided to put in a pic line...which means taking him back to the OR and sedating him again.

Update #8 got the PICC line in...finally! Something that should have taken 10 minutes took nearly an hour! Most people have 3 major vains in their arms, Izzy only has 1 in each arm. Plus, once they were in they couldn't get it to feed through. Needless to say, he made them work for their jobs today! They completely sedate him for this procedure and he is still out. Praying he sleeps for a while longer. I will keep you all posted, although this should be the last of the "big" news! Thank you SO much for the continued prayer and support! It means more then you know!

Update #9 WOW! What an amazingly different night we had! It was wonderful! WE SLEPT!!! We went to bed at 11:00 and woke up at 7:30! (Of course we were woken up all throughout the night for vitals and to go potty...but still!) We figured out a good pain management schedule and for the first time today he said his leg isn't hurting! In addition, the orthopedist came in and spoke with us. He gave us more details about the surgery and what we are waiting for (the cultures to come back from the fluid) before we can determine a long term plan. We should have those answers by tomorrow. SO thankful for all of you...our amazing friends and family. Your prayers, words of encouragement, texts etc. have been so helpful during this time. Love you all!

Update #10 For starters I must say it's 8:00 am on Monday morning and Izzy (and Daddy) is still sleeping!!! He went to bed at 10:30 and NEVER woke up last night. Not even while they gave him oral meds, did blood pressure or took his temp! Or to go to the bathroom...good thing I put a diaper on him! I'm pretty sure we all were beyond exhausted and needed that rest. He is drinking and eating normally so they were able to take him off IV fluids, which is wonderful! No more permanent cord attached to his arm, just the PICC life for when he needs his antibiotics every 8 hours. Yesterday we spent a lot of time playing, we went to the playroom and outside on the playground. It was wonderful to see him laughing and smiling again. Today we meet with the orthopedist and he will remove the splint, remove the drain and change the dressing on Izzy's leg. They said this will be painful but won't last long. Also, we are hoping and praying the lab results are done today so we can know enough about Izzy's infection and make a going home plan! As always...thanks for all the love and prayers. I LOVE checking my phone throughout the day and being encouraged continually by all of you. LOVE YOU!

Friday, September 14, 2012

4th of July Family Fun

4th of July is always a fun time for our family. This year we were able to celebrate with some of Jon's family. His brother David and his family (Wife Amity, two kids Amanda & Titus) were in town and we all enjoyed a fun at home fireworks display. This was Izzy's first year participating in the fun. He enjoyed it...but was a bit nervous the whole time. Fire and loud noises are on his "favorite things" list.

Izzy's first time with a sparkler...he was a little nervous.

Izzy & Aunt Amity

David & Titus

Mama & Izzy watching the fireworks

Rachel and cousin Amanda enjoying the fireworks together.

Papa helping Rachel and Jaxon get their sparklers started.

Rachel...seriously enjoying this years fireworks! 

Grandma got in on the fun too!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

My baby girl turns 10!

I know this blog was designed to share our story of Israel...but for today I am sharing it with my amazing, sweet, bright, loving daughter Rachel. On July 1st she turned 10 years old! I know it is so cliche to say...but truly where does the time go? In some ways it feels like it was only yesterday that I was bringing her into the world, yet on the other hand it feels like she has always been a part of my life. Rachel came to us as a surprise...and I can honestly say it was the best surprise I have ever received. She has blessed my life in more ways then I could even being to list. She has taught me so much about myself and been a huge contributor to me becoming the person I am today. I am SO thankful that God gave me this little girl to share life with. I could not imagine my life without her in it. I LOVE YOU Rachel Anne and I am SO proud of who you are and everything you have accomplished in your 10 years! I look forward to the next 10 years of life with you with great anticipation and expectation!
I hung balloons on her door with a sign, so when she woke up this was her surprise!
My beautiful 10 year old!
Rachel got her first "grown up" bike!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Swimming Lessons

So...I put all three kiddos in swimming lessons this summer!!!

Rachel has been taking them for a while and loving it...flying through the levels. Her teacher told us she should join swim team!

Jaxon is a good swimmer...but doesn't have a lot of technique, so I thought it would be good for me. He did well, but would much rather just play and not work...very typical of him!

Izzy LOVES the water, but we have had our share of "stare" issues with public swimming pools and I was hesitant, to say the least. However, it didn't feel right that I would hold him back from something he loves because of my own fears. I talked with the head life guard at the pool ahead of time as well as his teacher and felt as prepared for the unknown as I could be. Day one came and I was reluctant to let him go. Even though I was right there on the edge of the was a huge letting go step for me. But I did it! He did lessons five days a week for two weeks and it was WONDERFUL! He did amazing and loved it. In fact, he was one of the best in his class!!! His teacher was fantastic at treating him just like she did everyone else. She continually told me how impressed she was with him and everything he could do. I am SO thankful I took this risk!
Izzy & his wonderful teacher Jessica
Swimming with his face in the water!
Sitting dive!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Summer Splashes

So...I took the summer off case you hadn't noticed. I enjoyed being super busy with tons of fun kids and family activities and decided to set blogging aside until now. A lot happened this summer! So I thought I would give you some "Summer Splashes" of what we did and all the memories we made...and then share more details in later posts to come.
Swimming Lessons

Berry Picking

Rachel's 10th Birthday

4th of July


Physical Therapy

Park Days


Crooked River Ranch

Family Pictures

Camp Attitude

 Silver Creek Falls