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Friday, June 28, 2013

Rubber Band Painting

     This week, we had an art activity that was a MUST to do outdoors. You will understand why very shortly. Since it's been pretty warm, we found the perfect spot under the shade of a tree.

Ella modeling our activity- Rubber Band painting. I used a cookie sheet, covered it in parchment paper(easy clean up) , placed a white piece of paper down, stretched rubber bands across the sheet, and then added 3-4 paint colors that each child selected.

After getting our art smock shirt on, it was time to snap to their hearts desire!

The result was unique for each child.

Ella loved snapping the rubber bands but would hold up her messy fingers worried about all the paint. A quick wipe in the grass took care of that until we were finished.

Mason loved pulling his bands up pretty high.

He would also pull it off to the side a bit which created a lot of splatter.

This delighted Mason and he was cracking up as the paint splattered on his shirt and face.

JT got up close and personal with his project.

After a while, he took to lounging on his side as he snapped away.

Since he's my son, I made him pause for a proper smiling shot.

Finn was probably the most animated of all the artists.

He snapped fast and furious.

When Finn and JT were finished I had to capture their messy faces. I was the only person out there with them, so where exactly they were looking was beyond me- ha ha!

I just realized that JT was in the perfect shirt for the day- he was my mess maker!  I loved this fun and new approach to painting and the kids loved it!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Femoral Nerve Block

     I mentioned in Sarah's surgery post that she received a block in the leg that was operated on. She had the femoral nerve block procedure performed while she was in pre-op. John and I weren't allowed to be present, but the process was explained to us beforehand. She was sedated and then with the use of an ultrasound, they located her nerve using stimulation on her leg. All Sarah remembered was that her muscle was twitching very rapidly and then it stopped (that's when the block was administered).

     After Sarah came back to us from her loopy state from the sedation, she marveled at how "squishy" her blocked leg felt as she would poke at it. I told her it was a little preview of just how wonderful an epidural would be when she is older, much older, and delivering her children. Since we were killing some time leading up to surgery, we had Sarah perform a little trick. I love at how amused she was at her inability to move her leg.

     The nerve block did a fantastic job and Sarah was essentially numb for the first 2-3 days post op. She slowly regained sensation and along with that, more intense pain. I know Sarah was very thankful for her block and how it helped deal with the initial recovery.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Sarah's Knee Surgery

     To keep this summer full of healing of injuries, Sarah, John, and I headed up to Louisville, Ky last week to have a knee injury surgically repaired that Sarah sustained during her bowling season last year at Campbellsville University.

     To try and keep things simple, Sarah suffered a torn MPFL ligament. Not one I had heard before her diagnosis, but in essence it's the ligament that holds the patella (knee cap) in line and prevents it from sliding to the outside of the knee. If you want to get a better idea yourself, try a gently push your knee cap toward the outside of the knee. It should shift over a bit then stop. With Sarah, her left knee cap could slide a good 3-4 inches further than "normal". This caused her a great deal of pain and prevented her from doing easily everyday tasks such as climbing the stairs, exercising, and walking for longer periods of time.  Surgery was the only way to correct this and Sarah was more than ready after being in pain for more than 8 months.

Sarah's preoperative room. She had her own private room as we waited for the previous patients to have their surgery.

Our girl was nervous, yet ready to have her surgery. She managed to smile at just about every opportunity.

Our nursing student LOVED seeing first hand all of the things she has been studying about and wanted me to take photos of several things. Her vitals screen- all showing a healthy 20 year old female.

Outside of her room this waited to go with Sarah to surgery. Cryo Cuff. I hadn't heard about it until the day of surgery, but it after coming to find out the function of this device I thought this was pure genius! More to come on the Cryo Cuff in a future post.

Sarah had to get a femoral block before going back for surgery. These were the magical drugs that helped sedate her for the procedure. John and I went to another room while it was performed. 

When we came back this was the goofy expression Sarah greeted us with. Doped up and all smiles.  During this time, Sarah would go from telling us various nursing things she had watched, discussions with nurses on staff, asking us the same questions multiple times, and dozing for a few minutes. It was quite comical to watch.

We still had a good while to wait until it was Sarah's turn, so we took some Mom and daughter photos after she perked up a bit.

Daddy and daughter time.

Moments before being wheeled back to surgery. We gave lots of hugs, kisses, and prayed over Sarah. Still all smiles.

John and waited in the hallway as they wheeled Sarah back to surgery. The nurses paused for a moment and waved. Sarah said as they pushed her back they thought that was really cool that we did that and got a kick out of being included in the photo.

The hospital had this cool surgery update screen in the waiting room. Sarah had been assigned a number and on the screen it updates where in the process the patient is. It was reassuring to see as Sarah progressed through surgery and the 2 recovery rooms before we were called back.

We did have a brief visit from the surgeon after Sarah was finished. He had photos showing just how misaligned Sarah's patella was and how her MPFL was gone prior to being reconstructed with a donor graft. Everything  went perfectly and no other damage was found within her knee.

Sarah's first sip of water and bite of food in nearly 22 hours! She was SO thrilled to have these simple things.

After chowing down the crackers, the nurses brought her some orange sherbet. Stilly girl wanted to do a duckface for me as she enjoyed her treat.

Horribly blurry, but this was Sarah and her post-op nurse as she was being wheeled to the car to go home.

Sarah was anxious to take a peek at her incision sites a day after the surgery. She has 2 small cuts below her knee from the scope/tools, the lager incisions are from where I believe the new ligament was attached to her patella and femur.

In typical Apedaile6 fashion, the other kids wrote a Get Well message and JT drew a picture of Sarah on our chalkboard wall to help welcome her home.

Sarah is now currently 7 days post op and doing remarkably well. I will make a post about some of her recovery early next week after Sarah has her first post op visit with the Dr. We appreciate the kind words, thoughts, and prayers our friends and family have sent to Sarah.

Friday, June 21, 2013

The Big Wreck

     We have managed to kick off the summer being very busy, events to attend, and a few unexpected things happened. Recently, JT experienced his first big wreck on his bike. Bumps, bruises, and scrapes are to be expected, perhaps more so with little boys, but I wasn't ready for this doozy.

     As you know, JT loves being outside and in particular riding his balance bike. John was out of town for work (that's why I ended up taking several photos of this event to share with him afterward), so Lindsay, Courtney and I took JT for an after dinner walk/ride. We took a route we have done many, many times however this ended on a bad note- JT had his first accident.

     Along the path are some little hills that JT just LOVES to ride down. I'm learning as he's getting older, more brave, and physically capable I have a bit of an thrill seeker on my hands. JT often glides down effortlessly on the hills, balancing all the way down.  This time, he did fantastic going down the hill, but caught a bit too much speed at the bottom and wiped out. I was only a few feet away from him and quickly swept him up in my arms doing a quick look over. I noticed some blood and discovered he had a large gash on his chin. My heart sank with seeing the source of his tears, but I went into Dr Mom mode. I placed his chin on my shoulder to apply pressure and quickly jogged home.

     When we got back to the house, I had our nurse in training, Sarah, take a look at it to confirm what I had thought- JT may very likely need stitches. It was a pretty deep and wide gash :( Lindsay and I gathered a few things and headed to our nearby hospital emergency room. ****Disclaimer- this post will have some photos that might gross you out. You have been warned ;)

After we got back to the room holding pressure and a cold compress. All of the nurses and Dr loved seeing JT still wearing his helmet. JT didn't want to take it off afterward, maybe thinking it would make him hurt more. Let this serve as a PSA for always wearing your helmet when riding your bike, scooters, skateboards,etc.

JT's wound after it had been cleaned out. He had his accident on the asphalt so there were some pieces of the road in his boo boo. He did absolutely fantastic during this part of the procedure with zero tears or fighting to stay still. 

Since his wound was quite jagged, the Dr recommended we use steri strips along with glue instead of stitches. This part was the most difficult for JT. The two sides had to be squeezed together and a few seconds after the glue was applied, there was a burning feeling that happened.  Poor bubba. I fanned his little face as much as I could to ease the discomfort.

JT impressed the staff so much with his bravery that he was given a Popsicle and a lollipop. We then headed home.

The finished result. I'm hoping this isn't typical for the life of boys. This Mom can't handle heartaches like this.

JT's first blood stained shirt.

He wanted to show John his bracelet from the hospital.

Sarah and Courtney were so sweet to have his area all set up with all of his favorite things. They even made him chocolate chip muffins to enjoy when he got back. This boy is loved.

The next morning. I thought it looked a bit worse just from the dried up blood and some of the abrasions that were developing.

The strips and glue stayed on for about 5 or so days. What remained was a nice big scab. We are now approaching 2 weeks out and all that remains is the scab from the deep area of his cut. I'll keep you posted on how JT's chin continues to heal.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Sprinkler Ball

     Like I mentioned in my last post, it didn't take long for JT to try out his sprinkler ball. The very next day, Lindsay, JT,and his friends brought it out for some fun in the sun!

When Lindsay saw JT open this gift, she was just about as excited as him to try it out.

Lindsay covering up some of the lower sprinklers as to not spray the kids in the face.

The little ones were not big fans of the water near their faces.

I think they enjoyed running along the perimeter a bit better at first.

JT covering the sprinkler openings.

Mason running and having fun!

I love this shot of Mason with his arms raised. Ooo so cold!

Give me an "L"!

After a little break, JT came up with a fantastic idea! Goggles!!!

Now he could easily run near the sprinklers without getting water in his eyes.

Run JT, run!!!

Mason followed with his own pair of goggles.

Taking a break after running around and playing.

A big THANK YOU to Nanny and Aunt Cathy for sending this gift to JT. It will get used all summer long!