Thursday, May 28, 2009


Yesterday was Wednesday. Do you ever get confused about the days of the week when you have a holiday on a Monday? Last night I was sweeping the floors and it suddenly hit me. It was Wednesday! It was 7:50 pm which means church had just ended. I asked Mike if he realized what day it was and he just looked at me funny. When I said, "It's Wednesday!", he had a shocked look on his face. I was relieved when he told me that he wasn't supposed to teach class last night.

Just so everyone's on the same is Thursday!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Memorial Day Breakfast

Growing up we were always camping with the Rhodes on Memorial Day weekend. Since our families have grown and it's hard to get everyone together for an entire weekend, Mom and Paula decided to have a breakfast for everyone at Dad & Mom's house. Surprisingly, everyone was able to make it!

Growing up it was just me and all the boys (Kyle, Caleb, Brett, & Tyler). Now that they're all married...there are girls for me to hang out with! Staci, Amanda, Susie, Audria, & Ann

Susie is due June 26th with their first little boy, Kent. That's the day before Barrett's birthday! Not much longer! She's starting to get to the point where she's done being pregnant. We offered to catch the baby if she went into labor on Memorial day.

Barrett practicing walking.

Then we put him to work sweeping acorns off the pool deck. Whew! That's hard work!

Our kids stayed at Daddy Steve & Namaw's while we went to the game. The Rhodes stayed for awhile and played games. Looks like they got to enjoy the outdoors with the little guys before they left.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Ann's Big Surprise!

We had a fun Memorial Day this year. It was Mike's first time to venture out since his surgery. We had breakfast with Billy & Paula's family (and our family) at Daddy Steve and Namaw's house (pictures to come tomorrow when I can post some of the pics from Daddy Steve's camera). Mike sat on the couch icing his knee the entire time we were there. Around noon Tyler and Ann left for the Rangers vs. Yankees game (this was Ann's birthday present from Tyler...she's a big Yankees fan). What Ann didn't know was that Caleb, Audria, Lauren, Morgan, Mike, and I were going to meet them at the game. She was surprised and excited when we arrived!

It was a fun game...if you're a Yankees fan! The Rangers played TERRIBLE! They didn't even score until the 9th inning! I thought the star on the infield was pretty cool. I need to send a picture of it to Junior to give him an idea of a cool design for a state all-star game.

Being at a baseball game made me think about working for the rec commission...especially when they guys came out to rake the dirt! Of course, the guys that take care of the fields for the LRC are a little bit younger than these guys.

Thankfully there was an empty seat (a God thing at a sold out game) in front of us so Mike was able to prop up his leg. Even with propping it up, it was REALLY swollen by the time we headed home.

Ann was the only one excited about the outcome of the game. Rangers ONE - Yankees ELEVEN!

Mike, Staci, Audria, Caleb, Ann, Tyler

As we were leaving I noticed Ann looking for "somewhat" clean souvenir cups to take home. I bet she left with at least 10!

On our way to the car we stopped to take a picture of Caleb & Audria with both the Ballpark at Arlington and the new Cowboys Stadium in the background!

We stopped for dinner with Caleb and Audria at a little Italian Pizzeria for a yummy dinner. We had so much fun at the game, but I think Mike paid a big price for being on his feet for that long. He had a fever last night and this morning and even his hands were swollen! After working from home today (and his first physical therapy appointment), both the fever and the swelling have gone down. I think he's planning on going back to the office tomorrow.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Resting at Home

We arrived at the surgery center to discover that the first surgery of the day was more involved than expected and they were only on surgery #2. Mike was scheduled to be the last surgery of the day (#6). We arrived at 10:30 am and he wasn't wheeled back into surgery until 3:15 pm! It was a looooong wait, but it was made a little easier by the visit of one of the ministers from church and Angela & Jayden. The surgery itself took less than an hour. Dr. Conway came out to visit with me and Angela and let us know that the surgery went great. After a while we got to go back to recovery to see Mike and help get him ready to go home. Since they cut out the torn cartilage rather than repairing it, he was in much less pain than his surgery 2 years ago. He got dressed and we were headed home by 6:00 pm.

Tonight has been spent keeping Mike's ice pack full of ice and making sure he takes his pain pills every 4 hours. When I got home from an ice run, I was excited to see him able to put a little weight on his leg! He'll still go thru some physical therapy, but hopefully the recovery from this surgery will be MUCH quicker than last time.

Thank you for all your prayers during surgery today!

Surgery Day

Today is Mike's knee surgery. It's scheduled for noon. Please pray for Mike and the medical staff that will be working on him. We'd also appreciate prayers for a speedy recovery!

I don't think I ever posted about Barrett's dr's appointment. The urologist said that Barrett's body has healed itself and he won't need surgery after all! Praise the Lord! That was truly and answered prayer.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Metamorphosis of a 2 1/2 year old

Have you ever said, "It's burnin' up in here?" It's a common phrase which means "it's hot"! The other day Brody kept telling me he was burnin' out. I asked if he meant burnin up and he said, "No, I'm burnin' out!" After a few minutes I gave up reasoning with him about the fact that the saying is "burnin' up" rather than "burnin' out". This morning he said, "Mommy. I'm burnin' up! Can we turn the fan on?" I said, "You're burnin' up?" His response? "Yes! Some days I burn up and other days I burn out. Today I'm burnin' up!" lol!!!

Today was his last day of Sonshine Bible School. Before we walked out the door Brody grabbed my hand and said, "When I get to school I'm gonna tell my teachers about metamorphosis!" (I just had to look up how to even spell metamorphosis!) It took my brain a minute to remember what that big word meant...actually, when my 2 1/2 year old began to explain metamorphosis to me (he told about a caterpillar becoming a butterfly...something Mike's been reading about in a book with Brody) I thought "duh! I should've remembered that!" I don't know if he remembered to tell his teachers about metamorphosis, but I was impressed that he could pronounce it much less tell me what it is!

Now go from telling me the process of metamorphosis to his end of year program tonight at preschool! See Brody? (second from the left)

Yep. He stood there the entire time. He didn't do the hand signals or sing (although I thought I kinda saw his lips moving a few times). The picture below was the biggest smile we got out of him while he was on stage!

Kids are funny like that. Hey, is that kind of like reverse metamorphosis? He went from a 2 1/2 year old that talks like he's in elementary a kid who doesn't even sing "The Wheels on the Bus"!
I can't believe that it's already summer time! Brody LOVED school this year. He tells me stories all the time about Mrs. Amy, Mrs. Jessica, and all his friends. I don't think that he realizes that he won't be going back for a few months. I'm guessing he'll be sad next week when he figures this out. Maybe I'll have to distract him with swimming lessons in our new pool!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Note to Self

When at the grocery store, pay attention to the entire label of a product. Brody wanted pasta with chicken for dinner...and I wanted something quick to make. Since we desperately needed milk, we went to the store and I planned to get Pasta Roni and canned chicken (aka 15 minute dinner). The grocery store in TX is MUCH larger than our 5 aisle store in KS. It took me a while to find the canned stuff. I saw a can that said "Chicken of the Sea", assumed it was chicken and grabbed 2 cans. I was shocked when I opened the can and smelled tuna!! Maybe I subconsciously knew it was tuna because I also accidentally grabbed the Pasta Roni that says "just add tuna". I've never been a big fan of tuna mac...and this dish isn't smelling very good to me right now. I think I'll be putting on the "yumm! This is good!" fake attitude to get Brody to eat it. Who knows? Maybe he loves tuna mac!? We'll see.

The note to self? Chicken of the Sea is NOT chicken!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Kitchen Table Woes

Yesterday our kitchen table was delivered. Brody was SUPER excited! He watched every move the delivery guys made and then helped me inspect the table and chairs. We were both disappointed when we found a gouge in the wood on the side of the table top. The delivery guy made a call, informed me that a new top would be delivered later that afternoon, and then took the bad table top with him. I shut the front door behind the delivery guy and turned around to see my son standing in the hall with a sorrowful look on his face. His lip curled down and he said, "I thought we were getting a table so we can eat in the kitchen?!?" I told him that it was messed up and that they'd be bringing us a new one later in the day. "But I wanted a kitchen table! I really wanted one!" With that he ran to my bedroom, threw himself on my bed, and began to sob about wanting a table to eat at (yes, I took a picture...but I really tried not to laugh).
After cuddling for a little while, I got him to come back to the kitchen to see that we still had new chairs to sit in. Once Brody realized that he fit in the cabinet in the bottom of the table base, all of the tears were forgotten! Now he likes to hide down there and "surprise" Daddy when he gets home from work!
This morning he was sooooo happy when he got to eat breakfast in the kitchen...on a table!!!!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Sit Still

It was warm enough for tank tops the other day, so I tried to get a picture of the boys in one of their only matching outfits. They thought it was really funny to NOT sit still!

At one point Brody tried holding on to Barrett's arm to make him sit still. It might have kept him there, but neither of them were smiling at the camera. I would like to point out that in this picture you can almost imagine a double chin on Barrett!

Here's the closest I got. It may not be what I wanted, but it's still cute.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Heart Stopping

Caleb planned a surprise birthday party for Audria on May 2nd. We were all hoping that the part of the party where we all jump out an yell "SURPRISE" wouldn't send her heart into palpitations. The picture of that very moment might make you think otherwise...

But thankfully the surgery she had on her heart a few years ago worked...and her heart was fine. She was VERY surprised though! It was fun!

We had BBQ for dinner and then chocolate cake. This picture needs some analyzing. When you cut with scissors, does your mouth open and close as the scissors open and close? How about candle blowing? When one person is blowing out the candles on their cake, do your lips automatically want to blow air too? I had to laugh when I looked closer at this picture. Not only are Audria and Brody blowing out the candles, but look at Carl and Mike! I wonder if they couldn't help it...just like my mouth moves when I cut with scissors?!

After Audria opened her presents (or more accurately, after Brody opened them for her), David did a good job of getting Brody wound up!

Any guesses at how many times David heard the word "AGAIN"?

Monday, May 11, 2009

Things Brody said today...

"Mommy? When we get home can I work on your computer? I need to get online and see why Daddy's knee is hurting so I can help fix it!"

"Barrett, you little stinker! Don't fall asleep in the car!" (Barrett just looked at Brody and started laughing!)

While I was feeding Barrett in the other room I head Brody saying, "Daddy? Will you buy me a ladder like this for my birthday?" (I knew that Mike was using our 8 foot ladder to hang a fan and I was waiting for Mike's response. There wasn't one...he must have been focused on the fan.) "Daddy? Can you PLEASE buy me a ladder like this for my birthday? But wait for my birthday to give it to me. Okay? Okay Daddy? Wait for my birthday." Mike replied with, "I'll probably wait for another 20 birthdays. Maybe I'll buy one of these for you when you move into a house of your own some day."

"Mommy, I'll come back and finish these strawberries. I need to go poop!" As he was walking towards the bathroom he's still talking to me, "I'm sorry Mommy. It started to come out in my pants. I'm sorry!" I followed him to the bathroom (expecting a mess). There was nothing in his pants. I said, "Brody, you didn't poop in your pants?!" He said, "No, it started to come out but I stopped it." Then as he was climbing on the potty he was saying, "Hold on poop! Wait for me to get on the potty first!!!"

Brody - "Mommy? Can you come outside and help me find my bug?"
Me - "What bug?"
Brody - "You know, the kind that you roll up in a ball? It went down in the crack of the sidewalk and I can't reach it!"
Me - "There are plenty of other rolly pollies out there. Go get one of them."
Brody - "Oh! So my rolly polly was looking for one of his friends? I'll just follow him!"

While watching Dancing with the Stars, "Mommy? Will you please come dance with me and spin around and around? Let's go to your bedroom where there's lots of room and soft carpet!" Who could say no to that?! Not me! We danced until it was time to go to bed.

Surprise...we're moving!

(I'm just now getting around to posting about this because we finally got our computer hooked up that has our card reader!)

April 23rd Grammy (aka Nancy) drove down from Kansas to surprise Mike and the boys (and to help us move). She got there around 1 am and just snuck in and slept on our couch. The boys were surprised and excited when they woke up Friday morning to find Grammy there! Mike had to work 1/2 day so Nancy, Angela, and I worked on packing...and playing with the boys.

I had no clue that an adult could ride in Brody's golf cart...of course...Angela is much smaller than most adults!

Aunt Angela and Brody

Barrett loved Grammy pushing him around the backyard on Brody's tricycle!

I didn't get any pictures of people moving stuff...but it was a busy Saturday. Nancy and Angela stayed at our rent house and packed stuff up while the guys (Mike, Caleb, and Mark) drove loads of stuff to our new house where Namaw, Audria, and I waited to unpack it. We got everything moved to the new house just in time for dinner (Taco Bueno of course)! Caleb and Barrett waited in the backyard for the dinner to arrive.

Thanks to everyone (Grammy, Namaw, Angela, Audria, Mark, & Caleb) for all the help that you gave us moving! It made the big move much less stressful.

Sunday morning Grammy had to head back to Kansas. Before she left, she took us out to breakfast at IHOP. Brody loved IHOP (although he keeps calling it "Hi Hop"). He especially loved the big cup of hot chocolate! Now he tells me he wants hot chocolate "like Hi Hop's".

Brody stalls as long as possible (and he's VERY good at stalling)...but finally Grammy had to leave.

We headed back home to try to find the things we'd need to make it to work the next day and to set up the boys' beds. Barrett was glad to see his crib set up in his room. Until his crib was set up, he'd been sleeping in his pack-n-play. Since Grammy was sleeping on a mattress in his room, and we were sleeping on a mattress in the media room (the carpet in our bedroom/closet wasn't installed until the next week), we'd set up his pack-n-play in our bedroom closet!

I'm sure when he gets older he'll remind us that we "made him sleep in the closet when he was a baby"...just like Tyler reminds my parents about the time that he had to sleep in a box in the closet on our trip to Delaware!

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Roseola Round Two

Does anyone remember this post? (For the computer illiterate, if you click on "this post" it's a link to a previous post about Brody having Roseola)

I didn't even think about Roseola while Barrett had a high fever. I just thought it was strange that he had such a high fever yet didn't have any other symptoms (cough, congestion, etc). It wasn't until he broke out in a rash that the light bulb went off. Brody had Roseola when he was Barrett's age. Back then I wrote on our blog that "information online says that it occurs in children under the age of 3 and begins with a high fever. After the fever goes away a rash suddenly appears. It's a viral infection and the rash should go away in a day or two."

The only difference between Brody and Barrett's bouts with Roseola is that Barrett has been extremely fussy. Of course, he seems to be affected (mood/energy wise) by illnesses more than Brody does. You honestly wouldn't know Brody's sick unless you take his temp or see snot running out of his nose. He doesn't really slow down or act much different. Although I don't like for Barrett to be sick, it's been kinda fun to have him wanting to snuggle with us!

Brody didn't break out in a rash and only had a fever that one that still confuses me a little...but I'm just guessing he didn't get the rash since he's already had it?!? Who knows! All I know is that I hope our whole family is feeling better soon. I don't know if it's true or not, but it seems like someone in our family has been sick ever since we moved to Texas!


The surgery was a success! They wheeled me out of my room...and then I woke up in the recovery room. That was such a strange feeling to wake up not knowing where I was! I was wondering when they were going to get started with the surgery and found out they'd already done it! The kidney stone was softer than the dr expected and he was able to blast it into fine pieces. Yay! I got home yesterday and spent the afternoon/evening resting. There's been some pain off and on (probably as a result of the pieces moving from my kidney to my bladder), but it's NOTHING compared to labor. Of course, I have the memory of labor/delivery without any maybe the nurse meant that it could hurt worse than labor with an epi? Either way, I'm very thankful that I haven't had the pain that some have described.

One of the hardest things to hear from the dr was the "after surgery limitations". Because my stone was a little higher than some, he doesn't want me lifting Brody or WORKING OUT (gasp) for at least the next 2 weeks (the kidney may be bruised and he doesn't want bleeding). I have a follow up appointment with the dr in 2 weeks and he'll let me know then if I can resume my exercise routine. I already haven't worked out for the past 2 weeks because of this stone. I'm sooooo ready to get back to the gym. I guess I'll have to wait just a little longer.

Friday, May 08, 2009

Charges so far...

I'm up, already dressed and pumped, and am about to head to the hospital. The surgery is scheduled for 8:15 (but of course I have to be there at 6:15).

Caleb guessed the closest for the charges I already know about! Jamie will still be under after we're done!

The hospital's charges for a lithotripsy are $15,906. However, there's a provider contractual writeoff of 30%, so the insurance company is only charged $10,338 of which I have to pay my co-insurance (don't worry...I'll meet my total out of pocket just with the hospital bill!) This doesn't include the bills from the physicians (anesthesiologist, surgeon, tech)!!!! I can only imagine what the total bill will be! Does this seem crazy to anyone else? I told Mike that I need to save these little pieces, have them made back into the big stone that it currently is...and have it set in a necklace! lol

As for the boys, I think I know what the cause of the fever is...but it's much better explained in picture. You'll just have to wait on that since I can't find my camera cord...and our computer with a card reader isn't set up yet. Angela or Nancy - Do y'all remember packing the cord anywhere? I've looked in the coffee/end tables and the box marked "fragile stuff from end tables". Any other guesses?

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Guess the Cost of Surgery

Barrett's temps were down yesterday, however, he still acted like he didn't feel well. On Tuesday night, Brody woke up during the night with a 103.9 fever. His temps were mostly in the 101's yesterday, but he had a few jumps into the 102's. I'm hoping they both wake up feeling better today...and I'm also praying that Mike and I don't get whatever they've had!

My appointment went well yesterday. After inserting the die and taking x-rays, they found that the die passed from my kidney to my bladder perfectly on my left side...but didn't ever leave my kidney on my right side. The kidney stone is blocking the path from my right kidney to my bladder. I have a pre-op appointment today and then surgery tomorrow morning to blast the kidney stone. In regards to the surgery, I'm havin' to eat my words. A few months ago (I can't find the post where I said this) I said that it was crazy that everyone in our family but me will go under anesthesia this year (Mike for knee surgery on the 22nd of this month, Brody for his colonoscopy back in January, and possibly Barrett for a hernia). Now I just pray that Barrett won't end up needing surgery...otherwise ALL of us will have been under anesthesia in 2009. Crazy!!!

As I said before, I'm soooo thankful that we live in a country where medical care is readily available...but it's crazy how much some simple procedures (at least in my mind a kidney blast is a simple procedure...that may change after tomorrow) can cost!

Leave a comment and let me know your guess for how much lithotripsy (the official term for "blasting" my kidney stone) costs before insurance. No cheating...don't google it...just give me your best guess!

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Still Alive

We're still alive here. Barrett had temps in the 103's most of the day yesterday. Namaw took him to the dr yesterday morning while I tried to get thru to my urologist's office. Barrett's ears look better, so it's some kind of virus that his body is fighting. They did a flu test in the office and it came back negative (they also send one off to the state to make sure their in office test is correct). He's on a really strong antibiotic for the ear infection that he had last week, so any bacteria in his body wouldn't stand a chance. This morning his fever is down (only 101). Hopefully it won't take long for this virus to run it's course.

I'm not sure when I'll get in to see the doctor. Last Thursday I got in with a urologist. Based on the fact that my kidney stone is higher than he expected, he wanted to do another CT with contrast (aka x-ray where they insert die) this Wednesday to tell him more about the stone. I didn't really understand, but he said something about the fact that if it was this one kind of stone he could blast it and it might not break up or it might break up but not come out...and then he'd have to do arthroscopic surgery to go in and remove it. If it's the "regular" kind of kidney stone, he should be able to blast it and then just give me more pain meds to help with the pain while I pass all the pieces of the stone. On Thursday he told me that my stone is so big that there's no way it can pass on it's own...and he didn't think that it would try to move. With the pain that I've been having the past few days...I think it's trying to move. I'm doing a little better this morning, but for the past 2 days I've been taking vicodin every 3-4 hrs. I guess it's just a waiting game now. Gotta love waiting on doctors! I guess I'm just glad we live in a country where I can get in to see a doctor within a week. People in some countries don't have that opportunity! I hope that our healthcare system doesn't get to that point...but that's another topic for another day...

Ready for some good news? Our internet is scheduled to be connected today!

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Staci's Not Feeling Good

This is Staci's Dad, Steve, posting for her.  She's not feeling very good at all.  We kept Brody and Barrett this afternoon.  Brody is feeling great and had a lot of fun today building a slide and car with Pipeworks.  Little Barrett is not feeling good either.  He still has an ear ache and is running fever.  Even though he had 103.7 this afternoon, he still laughed for about 10 minutes at Brody hitting himself in the face with a wet pecan tree bloom.  Joan said it must be a boy thing - she didn't see the humor in it but Barrett sure did!

Keep praying that Staci will get through this without so much pain and that Barrett will get well.