Friday, August 29, 2008

United Way Video??

Ok, so I am trying to figure a way that I can share the video. I am hoping to cut only my part, but the only way I can share it is if I make it a private post. So, if you are interested in seeing it, please email me or let me know and I can forward the password. I will let you know when I get it posted.


Thursday, August 28, 2008

The zoo and our upcoming weekend!!

So yesterday, I took the girls to the zoo and then we had lunch with Nini and Pawpaw and went by Pawpaw's office to meet his work friends. Both of the girls behaved themselves quite nicely. We were planning to go bowling in the afternoon because it said on the website that it is smoke free - WRONG!! Poor Maddie was so sad that we couldn't go bowling but when I explained to her that the yucky smoke wasn't good for Kathryn's lungs, she said that if it meant not going bowling, she just wanted to make sure that Kathryn could breathe - AWWWWW, too sweet!! Maddie is such a protective big sister! Anyway, last night Maddie had choir so she was pretty thrilled with that and quickly forgot bowling.

Greg is headed home in just a little while and we are taking the girls to the McWane Center for the afternoon. This evening and first thing tomorrow we are preparing for another camping weekend away. This is only our second time to go away from home with Kathryn but we really enjoyed the last camping weekend so much and it seemed like a mini vacation!! We are going to a campground near Gadsden and will get to stay for two nights with Nini and Pawpaw in their camper. We figure we better travel now before fall/winter comes back around and we have to go into semi "lockdown" again during the flu season! Hopefully this is the last winter we have to worry about this with Kathryn!

We hope that everyone enjoys a long Labor Day weekend. We should have plenty of wonderful pictures to share from our weekend!

Faithfully, Kelly

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Celery, Soccer, and the Big Movie

So, I'll bet you are confused by the title? Friday night we went to eat dinner with Nini and Pawpaw at the Cheesecake Factory and Kathryn remained fussy at the beginning of the meal. Puffs were not keeping her satisfied. So I gathered her up and sat her in my lap - which is a little tougher now that she is a reacher and a grabber! Anyway, she reached and then she grabbed my celery from my plate and then she gummed every single piece! So we have a celery gummer!!

Maddie is all ready for soccer - we got her cleats, shin guards, soccer socks, soccer shorts, and her new bag came in the mail. She and Greg practiced on Sunday and I must say that she seems to be a natural! Of course, both of her uncles played so I think that she comes by that talent in the family genes!

I am on vacation this week and am spending the time with my girls (and cleaning the house during rest time and in the mornings while they still sleep). Anyway, yesterday we went to the big movie and Kat did so wonderful!! She feel asleep at first and then woke up as soon as the first loud noise started. She never fussed, watched some of the movie, and then took a nap. Of course, it was a Monday afternoon 2:00 movie and luckily, Maddie, Kat, Nini and I were the only people in the entire theater!! Our own private showing!

I think I have been failing to mention Kat's milestones, so I thought I would give a brief update:

  • she has been sitting unassisted for several months now
  • she is attempting to belly crawl, not very well yet though
  • she is "eating" some finger foods - like Gerber puffs, small amounts of bread, mushy banana
  • she still has no teeth
  • her bottles are still only 4 ounces or so
  • she does ok with baby food, but she could easily take it or leave it
  • she pulls to standing from her knees in her pack and play
  • she loves the exersaucer and her bebe pod (like a bumbo)
  • her favorite toy to play with appears to be books
  • she still takes the type of paci she had at the hospital as a preemie - she won't even consider another kind
  • she still wears 3-6 month clothes and some 6-9 month, and about to move to size 3 diapers
  • she adores bath time!
  • she looks beautiful without the cannula and stickers (I get to see it briefly when I change them)
  • she still has never slept a night in her bed
  • she smiles a lot and she does a lot of baby babble - no words yet
  • she adores Maddie - they already have the sister bond
  • she loves pulling a blanket up to her face and "hiding"

Better run - time to feed the munchkin!


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Ellis Household Happenings!

Kathryn is now officially pulling to standing as of this past weekend. She only does it in her playpen and her bed, but still enough to frighten you when you walk around the corner expecting to see a baby sitting down and there she is staring at you!!

Madelyn is signed up for soccer this fall -- her first stint in organized sports. Well, she's almost 5 - I don't know that you can call it organized, but I think that she will love it!! We ordered her a soccer bag for her cleats, shin guards, and ball. She is so excited!!

Greg and I are just the boring parents - we know you check the blog to see what's going on with the girls!!

Faithfully, Kelly

Monday, August 18, 2008

Maddie and Dad at "work"

Maddie and Daddy hard at work at Camp Cosby! Maddie thought she was something else in her girly pink hardhat!!

I love my family!!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

The rest of our week

Kathryn is doing just great on 3/4 L of oxygen - I think we will have no problems turning her down to 1/2 L in another week!! I am so glad to see her dropping her oxygen levels and handling it so well!

Wednesday of this week we had our Wednesday night kickoff program at church so the whole family went!

Thursday, Kathryn had her six month follow up with Cardiology and they gave her an excellent report. They advised us to come back in a year and a half when she is almost 3 - isn't that wonderful!? One less doctor visit!! Thursday was also my first meeting with the Children's Hospital Patient Parent Advisory Council that I was asked to be a part of. We were able to see some information about the new Children's Hospital that they are building in Birmingham by 2012 and it looks fantastic. I hope we don't have to go back to living at Children's again, but if we ever do, I hope we wait til then!

This weekend has been filled with snuggle time and errands for me and Kathryn. Madelyn and Greg went to Camp Cosby yesterday to help clean up with a group from his work. Maddie was so excited all week about going to work with Daddy!! She told me when they got home that Daddy works pretty hard when he is at work - I think Maddie thought that was what Daddy does everyday. She said she helped pick up the biggest sticks I ever saw - Greg says they were about the size of a ruler, but she thought they were huge. Isn't that cute?

Faithfully, Kelly

Oh - and I got my United Way video back from Regions. It's very neat!! I'll figure out a way I can share my part (if I can).

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Clinic Update and the United Way Lunch

Clinic Update:

Great Clinic visit. We got the ok to drop two meds!! We also were told to ween Kat to 3/4 liter of oxygen for the next two weeks and if she tolerates it, then go to a 1/2 liter!! (That is amazing!!) So far today, she has done excellent!! Kathryn's weight gain has slowed the last two months to 10 grams a day where for the previous four months she was at 14 grams a day, so that was a little bad news, but the doctors aren't making any changes right now. So. . . . until October, that's the clinic news.

United Way Lunch:

All went well - at least I thought so!! I think I was asked to do another one right after I spoke, but I am not sure. Will update more on that later!!

Thanks for the prayers for the United Way event. My fears were calmed!


Monday, August 11, 2008

Monday Madness at the Doctor

BPD Clinic visit today at 2:00. I am hoping for some changes today!! Will update later . . . .

Friday, August 8, 2008

Chocolate milk - am I allergic?

Well for those who know Maddie well, you know that she has thrown up every time in her life that she has had chocolate milk. So recently she told my neighbor that she was allergic to chocolate milk just as she had ordered a chocolate milkshake for Maddie (because that is what she had asked for with her lunch at Krystal)! Of course I received a panicky call at work from Christine . . . "um, Kelly, is Maddie allergic to chocolate milk? She just asked for a chocolate shake, I ordered it for her, and now she tells me she is allergic to chocolate milk!!" So I of course tell her, "no, she's not allergic" and then I explain why Maddie might have said that.

So yesterday afternoon, Maddie says that she would like to have some chocolate milk and here is the conversation:

"mom, can I have some chocolate milk?"
"no maddie, you know that you always throw up when you drink chocolate milk"
"well, moooooooom, you said I'm not allergic"
"that's right, maddie, you aren't allergic, but you still throw up each time you drink it - do you really want to get sick"
"well, I just won't talk to you each day I can't have any"
"that's wonderful - it will be a very quiet week - thank you maddie"


"but mooooooooom, pleeeeeeeeeeeease?"
"i thought you said you weren't talking until you could have some"
"well that starts tomorrow"

What a simple and adorable conversation with a 4 1/2 year old. It reminded me of how quickly we, as adults, abandon our convictions too! Whenever it becomes inconvient for us to stand up for what we believe in, we jump ship. I challenge myself and each of you to hold strong to your convictions and be steadfast in what you stand for and the choices you make! Wow, I hope to uphold my challenge!

On another note, I ask that you start praying feverently for me and my upcoming speaking challenge - I mean engagement! I speak on Tuesday at the Birmingham area United Way Agency Kickoff luncheon about our blessed receipt of services offered and funded in part by the United Way through Children's Hospital. I haven't been nervous until today when I began to talk through my "speech" and started to wonder how I will make it through without tears in front of a large group of executives! The only way I know is with prayer - so I humbly ask for your assitance in joining with me to pray that words from my mouth will make a difference!

Faithfully and humbly his servant!


Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Oh shoot - I got called!!

In the mail today was my notice that I have been called to my first ever jury duty. September 15 it is. Like I really have time for that right now. Oh pooh!

A nice relaxing night

Last Friday night, Greg and I spent the night away from home for the first time since Kathryn's birth (other than Children's Hospital - which doesn't count!) For our anniversary in May, my dear sweet husband gave me a gift certificate for a night to Ross Bridge Resort. Well we finally were able to use it and we checked in Friday afternoon around 3:00 pm. We spent the afternoon around the pool and I was able to enjoy a massage. For dinner, we ate there at the hotel and had a nice time relaxing on our balcony overlooking the pool. Around 6:45 pm, a bagpipe player stood overlooking the pool and the golf course and played Amazing Grace. We had a wonderful uninterrupted night of sleep and woke to a fantastic breakfast buffet!

All in all, it was time wonderfully spent and a very relaxing night away from home. My mom, Nini, stayed at our house with Madelyn and Kathryn and they enjoyed every minute of their time here too!

The rest of the weekend was spent with fun chores, yard work, church, and a diaper shower on Sunday.

Nothing eventful this week so far. Gearing up for next week when we have three doctor's appointments, Wednesday Night Kickoff at Church, a speaking engagement for Birmingham United Way, and a meeting at Children's Hospital for the Patient/Parent Advisory Council that I was asked to participate in!

Please pray for the Birmingham United Way event. I was asked to speak at the United Way Agency Kickoff luncheon for the Birmingham area next Tuesday August the 12th. From what I was told, the attendees are executive directors of the agencies that benefit from funding through United Way. I am speaking of behalf of my association with Regions Bank and our experience as a family with Children's Hospital. I know that it will be easy to speak since Kathryn's story is so easy for me to tell, but please keep me in your prayers that the right words are spoken and the right meaning is conveyed!

And last but not least, it appears that Greg and I will be appearing on local news on ABC 3340 on September 22 at the lunchtime news hour. There is an event in Birmingham on September 26 that is called Breakfast for Babies that will benefit the March of Dimes. Since we will be the Blue Jeans for Babies Ambassador Family in November, they asked if we would be willing to help for this event too. Sooooo, . . . . we will be interviewed during the lunchtime hour that day and talking about our association with the March of Dimes and about our beautiful preemie daughters!

Faithfully, Kelly

Friday, August 1, 2008

The photo shoot

We had a great time at our 1st birthday photo shoot! They took 108 pictures - here are a few of the best ones!! Sorry it took a little time to get these posted!

Look Who's One?

I love my girls!!! Kelly