Blogging and Praying that I never forget these days . . . .


March 31, 2013

Easter this year was soggy and wet.  We attended Church on Saturday night to hear Brother David's message.  Then on Sunday we went to the Long Hollow Gallatin Campus.  Our nephew was baptized during the service.  Praise the Lord!  There is no better day than Easter Sunday to "come up from the water."  Love it.  It was wonderful family time to rejoice in his decision and the Resurrection.  Tears of Joy!   It rained all day, but that didn't stop the Kelley kids from hunting eggs.  We had lots of fun with umbrellas in the rain while the kids tried to scoop up the most eggs.  The kids were pumped when they found not only candy, but money in the eggs.  Max was lucky and found both the golden eggs this year.  They were regularly colored eggs with a penny in it.  Once the penny was discovered Grandma replaced the penny with a ten dollar bill.  So Max walked away with $20 and change while everyone else got all coins.  Mary Kate was trilled with the coins and thought she was rich. 

All Eight Grandkids

Mary Kate & Max

Kayla & Tristan

Ashton & Trace

Jonathan & Jacob

Pawpaw and Grandma's Grandpigs . . . I mean kids.  Lol.

Making Easter Treats

March 29, 2013

We spent Good Friday together as a family this year.  Jay had already planned to take the day off with Max for his spring break from school.  Then unfortunately I got sick with strep throat and stayed home most of the week.  Jay went to the store and bought supplies after I surfed pinterest for ideas.   We decided on making rice krispie baskets.  Mary Kate loved mixing up and taste testing the rice krispies.  Max really enjoyed the decoration part where we put green icing in for grass, jelly beans for eggs, and twizzlers for basket handles.  Our next project was dying eggs for deviled eggs with Easter dinner on Sunday.  We found an awesome recipe to dye the egg after it is peeled.  After we boiled them, Jay dyed the eggs  and I made the filling to go back in them.  I was quite impressed with our colored deviled eggs.  It was hilarious to see every one's faces when they saw them and tasted them.  I have a huge hang up with things not looking like what they are suppose to taste like.  For example it sets me off when I get a red peppermint and it tastes like cinnamon.  So with that said, I didn't brave the pretty eggs, but out family said they tasted like a normal egg.  Lol.  Fun stuff.  I love doing activities like this as a family.  I wish I hadn't been sick, but it was still a great afternoon.

Winter Days

Well, as the winter days have trapped us in the house we have tried to have a little fun.  Max has decided to learn how to bake cookies.  I have spent time teaching him how to mix them and bake to perfect soft chocolate chip cookie.  Mary Kate is still enjoying all her baby dolls.  Recently, she has been on a Play Doh kick.  I have never allowed Max to mix the Play Doh colors, but Mary Kate did it when I wasn't pay attention.  I had to let go of my OCD and take a few deep breaths.  I focused on how much fun she was having with her "pretty colors" and moved passed it.  I still twitch when I see the mixed up colors, but she loves them.  That is what is important, right?

Gindy's Trials

February 2013
Well, it has been over a month since one of my best friends got tragically sick.  It is still really hard to write this post, but since it has consumed our lives I feel that it should be recorded.  The week of New Years Gindy had a horrible headache that she could not dull with any medicine.  She went to the ER  on December 29th and they scanned her head, gave her some meds, and send her home with the diagnoses of a migraine.  She fought the headache for a week and tried to work.  Finally a week later on January 5th she went back to the ER because she had spiked a fever and she knew something wasn't right.  Once in the ER, they rescanned her head, gave her more meds, and did a spinal tap.  They decided to diagnose her with meningitis and admit her.  I visited that night and she was laying flat in the bed and not getting any relief.  The nurses struggled with her IV and by Sunday night she had a central line put in for antibiotics and fluids.  Sunday night she was still with it, but that all rapidly changed.  By the time I visited on Monday she was not acting like herself and struggling with urination and strength.  Shortly there after everything changed.  She was unable to face any lights and unable to get out of bed.  She talked alot less and was somewhat difficult to communicate with about her symptoms.  Her spinal tap had come back clear, but the doctors could not explain what was going on with her.  They were just calling it viral meningitis.  Since she was finishing antibiotics from a sinus infection, strep throat, and flu earlier in December, they continued to treat her with antibiotics.  They thought maybe bacterial meningitis had been masked by the antibiotics.  After lots of in and out caths she ended up with a foley catheter.  She was unable to move very much at all in the bed and definitely unable to get up out of bed.  She complained with burning, tinglings, and fever.  Finally after multiple doctors and consultations they decided to start steroids.  Within hours of starting them Gindy was back.  She awoke from her stupor at midnight on Thursday and had lots of questions about the previous days.  The more she awoke, the more she became attuned to her deficits.  Physical therapy had to literally lift her to move her and she could not bear weight on her legs at all.  Once she figured out her catheter, she demanded it come out.  After hours of trying to void she would have to have it placed again.  This saga went on for days and we all struggled with the reasons of no bladder functioning.  Gindy focused on her legs and trying to regain sensation from chest level to toes.  No one could explain what was going on inside her.  All tests, MRIs, and other scans came back negative.  No answers.  As hundreds of people prayed, we cried and tried to diagnose her ourselves.  As Gindy's RN mind came back we wrote lists of questions and possibilities for the doctors.  No answers.  Finally after a week and a half one of the doctors started calling her paralysis transverse myelitis.  They scheduled a move to a rehab facility and made a new plan of care.  At this point, she needed lots of encouragement.  A card drive was started and her room at rehab began to be flooded with cards.  This was totally amazing.  Once at rehab the process to get better became intense.  She spent hours each day with physical therapy learning to walk and other essential of daily living.  She spent time with occupational therapy and many other specialities and she tried to get a grasp on this new life.  No one would promise her anything.  No one could put their finger on what was going on with her sensations.  She learned many new ways to live a "normal life."  It was heartbreaking for everyone to stand by and watch.  None of us could do anything to make her better.  We just had to turn it over to God and let him guide us all through this difficult process.  Letting go of control is never easy, but being a nurse (which Gindy is too) and laying down your medical brain and giving it to God was SO HARD.  Gindy and I wanted to explain everything, we wanted to know medically step by step the answers . . . and that wasn't possible.  Through many tears and fits we all surrendered.  It was simply astonishing to watch Gindy and Scott go through this transformation.  Gindy's attitude changed and her mind set shifted.  She began leading us by example through the healing process.  I took hold of her lead and thought if she can do this, then I can definitely hold her hand through it and support her.  Amazing.  Our God is undeniable.  After two weeks in rehab, Gindy had learned to walk with a walker, the process to in and out cath herself if needed, new methods to move around her house, and how to help care for her daughter, Kerrigan, and be safe with her deficits.  The doctors released her to go home and continue with outpatient therapy.  Now as I write this we are 8 weeks into the process.  Gindy had given up the walker and the cane.  She can walk and move slowly with confidence.  She has trained her bladder to no longer need caths.  Her painful sensations of burning, crawling, and tingling have all decreased to almost non existent.  God is always good.  Her sensations are not back to normal and she has some struggles.  She still isn't where she wants to be in her recovery phase, but she is making strides everyday to get to that finish line.  We are so proud of your determination, Gindy!  We will walk this path with you no matter how long it takes.   We love you.
Rehab Week One
Cards decorating her Rehab Room 
Going Home!
Revisiting all her cards of encouragement

Go Red Day

February 1, 2013
Friday was "Go Red for Women Day" with American Heart Association.  I have always participated with this at work and worn my red scrubs.  Obviously, with my heart surgery this year the day took on a whole new meaning.  I got really excited as the day drew close and made sure my family was ready to participate.  I was fortunate and found a shirt with hearts on it for myself and then I added my surgery date to the center.  The day that changed everything.  Max wore his red, I got Mary Kate a red top with lots of hearts, and Jay also wore red to work.  I reminded all my friends and family about the day.  I was touched as they sent me pictures of themselves in red through out the day.  Jay's work and my hospital even participated in the day.  It was an amazing day for women with heart disease.  Jay doesn't like when I call my defect heart disease, but in the medical world it is congenital heart disease.  Amazing.  Along with AHA awareness with women, I submitted my story to the website for Go Red.  Since then I have gotten confirmation and my story is published with all the other survivors on the page.  It was a touching moment for me to see my picture listed there with all the other women.  I have been forever changed my this journey and I am so excited about my future.  Thanks to everyone who has prayed for me during this healing process.  Each one of you have a made a difference in my life.  Love.

The Circus

January 26, 2013
This year's Ringling Brothers Circus was a night fun of full.  We started the night early with dinner at The Spaghetti Factory with Chance, Amanda, and Logan.  Then we arrived at the circus for the preshow and to meet the clowns.  Mary Kate wasn't sure about all the clowns, but Max a fun posing for pictures with them.  The preshow included acrobats, an inflatable playhouse, elephant painting, dog tricks, and lots more.  It is always neat to be able to be on the floor with all the performers.


The circus had a theme of dragons this year with numerous animals.  The tricks done on the horses was amazing.  Then later in the show all the lions and tigers came out to the center ring.  The tiger pictured below was named Max.  Of course our Max thought that was really cool.  He was a huge tiger that did all the commands on cue.  Mary Kate and I enjoyed watching the elephants parade and stand on their hind legs.  One elephant even did a handstand!  We all had a blast this year and look forward to going again next year.


Visiting Charlotte

January 26, 2013
Today we went to Josh and Holly's house to visit with Charlotte.  Max and Mary Kate are totally smitten by her.  They think she is the coolest gift ever.  I love to snuggle her tiny little body.  Jay and I don't get to hold her for very long on our visits because the kids want to hold her the entire time.  Too sweet!  God had blessed us with such a beautiful little princess.

Go Flames