Thursday, April 28, 2011


The past few weeks have been a whirlwind, and finally things have slowed down a bit (to just packing up for our upcoming summer in Utah, New York, and more Utah and preparing for my brother and his wife to come).  We found someone to live in our apartment here in D.C., we sold one of our cars, we found a mostly affordable place to live in the Big Apple, we helped Caroline rest, heal and bounce back to her usual self after surgery, there was a fun baby shower that I helped host, and we had a lovely Easter.

A couple of weeks ago, we found a place to live in New York and I am already in love with that city.  We came across many apartments that were 1 bedroom for $6000 per month, it is just plain robbery!  The apartment we found is luckily well below that price and it is clean, has an elevator, laundry facilities are in the building, and it's just a couple of blocks from Central Park.
Living room with oversized couch (that turns into a pull out sofa bed for two)

Living room with oversized couch (that turns into a pull out sofa bed for two)
Easter was filled with so many dear friends.  Some of which will move shortly after we do and we won't get to see them for who knows how long.  These little ones just can't get enough of each other!
Right before the egg hunt, Caroline and Brielle could barely contain their excitement.
We spent a wonderful brunch with the Gardners and the Andersons Easter Sunday.  Let me just say we ate really well that day.  We napped after and then went on a walk in the warm and humid weather.

We spent the evening with the Andersons and the Keithlys.  Everyone made mouth watering dishes that filled my tummy twice over.  
We had festive placecards that had surprises inside.  Caroline loved smashing hers, and Olive carefully peeled off the paper tulip wrapper.

She was beyond delighted to find what was inside!
And my bearded-studying-for-finals hubby had his token peep for the holiday.  After dinner we were completely entertained watching the kids on their sugar highs bound off the couch and dance on the coffee table.
It was so nice to spend a day not thinking about if I should pack a winter coat for chilly Utah 
and just relax, enjoy our close friends company and savory food.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Just when you think your little one is in a phase where you don't think they can be any sweeter or more fun, they do something to make you excited for how they are growing.  This is one of Caroline's first self portraits, make sure you notice her red glasses :)  She also wrote her name all by herself without any prompting from me.  She just came up and said, "Look mom, I can write so many letters!"  (I helped her write the number 3.)
She is loving to read and write.  She reads signs all over and shouts out what they say.

She loved General Conference and asked to watch it everyday multiple times a day for about a week.  Also, everytime we went to someone's house she would say, "I think we should take Isabella a conference packet."
She is such an incredible example to our entire family.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Things that make me happy

I was completely overwhelmed at how breathtaking the cherry blossoms were.  Canopies of tiny white blossoms filled the sky when you looked up.
I was so glad that my friend Miranda was so willing to take pictures of our girls surrounded by the sheets of white!
I am also really glad that we didn't have to pay a sitting fee because it went from very pleasant with them walking and holding hands.....

to an absolutely freezing 3 year old that was filling the air with loud wails of "I'm COLD!"
I feel bad that I kept trying to bribe her for just one. more. picture., but I did give up...finally :)
It was very, very cold.

This little warm body was not phased by the freezing, crisp air. She toddled around in her poofy pink
dress doing her best sweet and silly faces.  

After a warm snuggle in the stroller, she was back in business!  I think that being on my shoulders, with her dress over my face..... 
made her think that pictures were pretty fun.
Later when we were looking at the pictures she saw the ones with her holding a blanket.  She said "I want to see my pretty pink dress!  Why is it covered?"
I laughed and thought, maybe next year we will see it :)

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Home for some R and R

We are home and it feels so nice.  Everything surrounding getting the surgery done could not have gone better.  There were so many tender mercies that were noticed.

A few days before going to the hospital, Caroline was paraded from place to place for hours and hours to prepare.  She started Thursday with preschool.  Straight from there we went to the eye doctor to figure out what to do about the broken glasses from last week.  Then it was time for a presurgery physical.  Off to do labwork at another location, and then our last stop was to go pick out new glasses.  
Let me just say that the people at America's Best were not sad to see us leave.  We left without glasses, and it seemed like the entire store was rearranged due to Olive's interior design skills.

(blurry sorry, but I just love it, she was such a happy traveler)

Preparing her for what would happen was actually really fun.  We read "Goodbye Tonsils" which she really liked and understood.  We wore surgical masks to see what everyone would look like in surgery.  And we had to do a manicure and pedi because cute feet are a highlight of a nurses day in the O.R.

The morning of surgery was tender.  Caroline was solemn and didn't talk much.  She was tired and hungry, but didn't mention that at all.  I was so worried about having to keep her without food until 10 a.m., but we were blessed and her tummy made it.  We woke her up at 5:30 to pump her full of juice because she could have clear liquids up until 6.  
She wanted to wear her pink fairy jammies and her bunny slippers to the hospital.  
On the way to the hospital she calmly said, "Mommy, I am a little bit nervous to get my tonsils out."  
One of the most touching parts for me was that Adam and I both got to go back and be with her as she fell asleep.  I was able to hold her tight as she breathed the strawberry scented gas.
The surgical team was so interested in talking with Caroline about if she liked puppies or butterflies, or the color pink :)  I wasn't too worried that I was too choked up to sing to her or to ask Adam to sing.  She was as happy as could be as she drifted off.  
I was happy too that she was soo comfortable, but it was hard to leave her there on the stretcher.  

The surgery went fast and the doctor said that her tonsils and adenoids were HUGE!  He also said that she had what they call "glue ear" because she had such thick fluid behind her eardrum.  The surgeon placed tubes to prevent fluid from building up there.  We are so glad that she'll be able to hear better, it will be so nice for her.
She slept a long time, and when she woke up in recovery she was so pleasant.  When it was time for Adam to go she said, 
"Daddy, give Olive a smooch for me and tell her that I will get better soon."
I can tell you that tears were just waiting to pour out of our eyes.  She is always looking out for her sister.

We had to stay overnight so that she could be monitored because she was so young.  It was a long night, but we enjoyed walking around the unit at 4 am, watching Madeline, and snuggling.  

Since being home we have had no agenda and have just been resting a lot.  It has actually been really nice.  The first real smile I saw from Caroline was yesterday morning when she said, "I am feeling a little better mom."  

We have felt so taken care of and loved with all of the family and friends concern and help.  THANK YOU to all of our dear support our here.  The calls, emails, texts, visitors, care for Olive, treats to brighten Caroline's day and just offers to help have been overwhelming.
Caroline said yesterday with her swollen little bubble voice, "Mommy, it's so nice that everyone says Get Well, Get Well, Get Well!  It makes me feel good."
Even though she is young she genuinely appreciates all the love and support she has received.  And knowing Caroline she will remember it forever!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Good-bye Tonsils

Last Friday my old business of being a surgical nurse just became really personal.
Caroline is having her tonsils and adenoids out on Monday.  I know that thousands of children have this procedure done each year, but it has made me really emotional.  A couple of people have called from the hospital to get medical information about Caroline.  They have also asked, "Is there anything special we should know about Caroline to make her stay better?"  I pause and try to talk, but my throat becomes tight and tears well up in my eyes as I try to tell them, "Caroline is very outgoing and happy.  She loves to sing.  Can you sing to her while she goes to sleep?"
It has stunned the two ladies I spoke with, I just hear silence on the other end of the line.  It's a comforting, not rushed silence though.
I do know that she will be fine.  I know that there are thousands of children that deal with such greater things than this.  I am not scared of the surgery part so much, but just the anesthesia part really.  Them having my little girls breathing in their hands, yikes, I don't like that thought.

She may also have tubes placed because apparently she is not hearing very well because of all the fluid that is behind her eardrum.  The doctor said that she has been missing quite a bit when people talk to her.  That really crushed my heart.  I am extremely grateful that this problem can be fixed!  I am also grateful for prayer.  I had been praying for more patience.  Patience for when I would ask Caroline to please brush her teeth and 10 minutes later she was still lining up her ponies.  Patience for when I would ask her to please come back to the table and she would twirl until she was dizzy.
Answers to prayers come in incredible ways.  I found out she wasn't hearing me. Now I get to look her right in her bright blue eyes when I ask her something and no patience is needed.

(This picture has nothing to do with the post except that another special thing about our little Caroline Ella is that she loves to read.)
One night it was very quiet and I was wondering what she was doing in her room.  I opened to door to a dark room, with only a bright little light from her flashlight.  She was just sitting in her fancy dress reading books to herself.