Monday, December 13, 2010

Christmas Tradition #2

Tonight for Family Home Evening we decorated our gingerbread house. This tradition started when I was a kid. Each year my brothers and sisters and I would put togeher and decorate our own gingerbread house made out of graham crackers. For the first few years we were married, I made Ryan carry on this tradition with me, and he and I would make gingerbread houses out of graham crackers. Last year I decided to do a big gingerbread house made out of real gingerbread, instead of the small ones, and now that is becoming our family tradition.
Making the gingerbread and cutting out all the pieces is alot more time consuming and labor intensive than the graham cracker ones, but I kinda like all of us decorating the house together. Plus I like the challenge of doing it homemade, and not a store bought kit. Maybe in a few years, as the kids get older, I'll go back to the graham.
I started the whole process about 2:30pm this afternoon, and the last pieces of house came out of the oven about 5:30 pm! When Ryan got home from work I put him in charge of putting the house together while I made dinner (waffles). After dinner we started the process of decorating. Ryan was a good sport and lasted about 45 minutes with the kids. After they were sufficiently sugared up, we put them to bed, and I finished decorating it myself. (I secretly love decorating the house, I just couldn't leave it when the kids went to bed, I had to add more to it!)
Putting the house together

Ryan is the construction major, that's why he puts the house
together. I'm too impatient and don't let the icing dry, and the
walls cave in.

Adding the candy!

Ta Dah!

Ryan got a little bored at the end and gave our snowmen red hot eyes
and samurai swords. Apparently our house needs protection
from invaders.

The finished product after I did my last minute additions.

Last T-Ball Game

All the boys waiting to bat
Saturday was Clark's last t-ball game.  I think it was the only game where we had every boy on the team there! In a way I'm glad it's over- now we have our Saturday's back, but I know it was really good for Clark. He keeps asking me what he's gonna do next- I'm not sure I'm ready for whats next!
Clark taking a swing

After the game we had a little awards ceremony where all the boys received their
trophies from the coach. And what awards ceremony is complete without treats
and pizza?!

Clark and his trophy. He was so proud he carried it around all day.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Poor Kate

Yesterday morning Kate woke up with a little bit of a rash on her forehead and when we changed her clothes I noticed that she had some little bumps on her tummy and back.  I didn't think too much of it, thought she maybe had an allergic reaction to something and it would go away. As the day progressed it didn't go away, and in the afternoon the dots just exploded. They turned bright red and started spreading all over her tummy, back, arms and starting on her legs. I called my trusty sister Bridgett, who is a doctor, and she came over to look at her. She didn't recognize it at all and started calling doctor friends to get opinions. At this point I'm starting to freak out a little bit. Kate has been immunized for chicken pox, so I didn't think that could be it, but when Bridgett was stumped as to what it was, I started to get nervous. So then I started the debate of, 'should I take her to the ER tonight, or can it wait till the morning?'. About this time Ryan was waking up (yes, he's on nights again) and I asked him to give Kate a blessing. After the blessing we decided to just watch her through the night to make sure her mouth or throat didn't swell up and take her to the Pediatrician first thing in the morning.
These were taken last night. Her poor face is all red and swollen!
You think this is bad, it was twice that bad the next morning.
Ouch! It just looks like it hurts.
Since I was by myself last night, I set my alarm every 2 hours and got up to check on her. She was fine, but by this morning it had spread all over her face, in her ears and just looked horrible. I just wanted to cry for her. I got her an appointment first thing with our Pediatrician, Dr. Hayden, and my mom came and took Clark so I didn't have to take him to the doctors too. 
Turns out that it is hives. I didn't think it could be an allergic reaction because nothing has changed. She hasn't had any different foods, medications, nothing. So what Dr. Hayden says is that she probably got some kind of virus and instead of her body fighting it, it treated it like an allergy and had a massive allergic reaction. I had been giving her some allergy medicine that wasn't helping- come to find out I needed to give her 3 times what I was giving her! He also prescribed another type of allergy medicine and a steroid to help her body fight whatever it is. After the appointment we filled all the prescriptions, got some good anti-itch cream and I loaded her up with the drugs. Within an hour the bumps had gone from screaming red to soft pink and the swelling in her face had gone WAY down.
Dr. Hayden says that it will probably take about a week for it to go away, but she is not contagious in any way- it just looks horrible! By this afternoon she was starting to act herself again and get some energy back. It's still super itchy, so I think we'll go through a few tubes of anti- itch medicine by the time we're done.
It is just awful to watch your child suffer, and see things happen to their body and you have no way of stopping it or making it better. I know this is a very small thing, and it makes my heart go out to those parents who have, or have had, truly sick kids. What a painful experience. It also makes me grateful for modern medicine and good doctors. It only took an hour at the doctors office and a few minutes to get a prescription filled to make her feel better. I can't even imagine what people went through watching their kids suffer and having no medicine to give them. I am blessed!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Christmas Tradition #1

One thing I love about Christmas is all the traditional things we do. I've been looking at our calendar and trying to determine when we will fit them all in! Tonight we bought and decorated our Christmas tree. Yes, we are real tree people. They are messy and sometimes they die sooner than you'd like, but again, it's tradition. When I was growing up we used to go up to the mountains the day after Thanksgiving and cut down a Christmas tree. Ryan and I wanted to do that this year, but didn't think about getting a permit until it was too late. So we went to our favorite tree lot at Red Mountain High School. (their trees are awesome- they keep them in water all the time, and it benefits the band) 
Here's a look at our Family Home Evening activity tonight:
We got a smokin deal on this tree. It has quite the bare spot on the back,
but it's at the bottom and we knew it would be hidden. Ryan had to trim a few
branches at the bottom, but not too shabby.

After Ryan and I got the lights and ribbon on, Kate and Clark went to town with the ornaments.

Ta Da! There are a bit more ornaments around the bottom than the top- but hey, that's what
you get when kids decorate!