Merry Christmas...

From Our Family to Yours...

Josie Claire-20 months
Grady- 4 1/2 years old

Fall 2012...

Christmas Break is here and I have a minute to update my blog.
Here's what we've been up to...

We had our annual Halloween Party at our house!
 Josie was a fairy princess.
The Cousin's... 
 Grady was none other than John Cena!
We had a great time trick-or-treating this year. Josie really got into it! :) 

My friend Sara-Kate got married in October. It was beautiful but FREEZING!!!

Grady played baseball for the third season this fall. He played on a 5/6 year old team. They all did really well!

Here he is with two of his buddies and their trophies!

My 2nd neice, Madi, was born! She is SO cute!!!

We celebrated Thanksgiving at Nana and Papaw's house.
Grady and Avery
  Nan, Josh, and Barbara
Nana and her grandkids

 The weather was so nice, the kids got to play outside all afternoon!
 Grady took Avery and Josie for a ride on his Gator. They didn't want to get off! Notice Josie's seat belt! ha!

Grady is now in Pre-K at Ringgold First Baptist. He LOVES it! They put on the cutest Christmas Program Thursday night. He was the inn-keeper.

Our Christmas events start tomorrow!!!


Where a kid can be a kid...

I got my kids back Monday morning! My in laws had kept them the whole week while I did my treatment. I wanted to take them somewhere fun to celebrate!!! =)
I missed them terribly while they were gone. I had never spent 7 days away from them! Thank goodness for FaceTime using our iPad and iPhone!
So to celebrate we went here:

It's really not crowded if you go early enough in the day. With it being a Monday, it was really nice to let the kids run around and not worry about a crowd! I love that they stamp each family members arm so that you cannot get out of the building without your all members of your party!
Amy and brock met us up there! We hadn't been since last summer so Josie really got to enjoy it this time!

All she wanted to do was put the tokens in the slot!

She also liked playing with the buckles in each of the rides!

Grady had a great time, too! His favorite games are the ones where you race or drive. I tried to explain to him that he wouldn't have many tickets if he played these games the whole time.

He ended up winning 68 tickets from the 50 tokens I had bought him. That was just enough to buy three Airheads (or arrow heads, as he called them). =) Such a ripoff but they had a fun time!



My sweet friends...

While I was "locked up" this week from my treatment, I received some gifts from my friends. I am so blessed to work where I do! Some of my closest friends are those I've met through work!

My sweet friend, Leigh Ann, is the most thoughtful and creative person! In every little detail she makes, she puts a lot of thought into it. I worked with her for 5 years before she transferred to a new school. :( I miss seeing her sweet face everyday!
She wanted to run some movies by to keep me busy. This sweet package was waiting on my doorstep:

From the little starfish to the raffeta sticking out...she's so creative! I would never think to add those little details. :)

She had about 20 DVDs wrapped up in tissue paper along with homemade soaps in a bag of oats, a loofah, and a sweet zebra bathroom bag. She's just so cute!

My friend Amy B. brought dinner over Monday night. She is such a thoughtful and caring person! She teaches 5th grade at my school and is such a wonderful teacher!
I look up to her so much and go to her a lot for advice.
She got married at the beach last month and her big wedding reception is tonight but even with all that she had going on this week she delivered this:

She and I love the movie Due Date, double doozies from Great American Cookie co, and magazines! These double doozies hit the spot while i was cooped up in my bedroom!

My sweet friend Theresa brought dinner over Thursday night. She and I have become so close since she moved up to first grade from kindergarten. She's moving up to 2nd grade this year :( but, her classroom is still just 2 down from mine. :)

Another precious friend, heather, sent dessert and tons of hair bow stuff to keep me busy. I taught myself how to make hair bows for Josie!

I really am so lucky to work at Westside!!! We are like a family there and I cant imagine working anywhere else!



I found out this past March that I have Grave's Disease. Grave's Disease is an auto-immune disease that (in my case) has attacked my thyroid. Here's the story (just for my records)...

I just hadn't felt right since around Christmastime. I was extremely fatigued and it took everything out of me to go to work and get home before I would fall into bed (usually for the rest of the night). I started having these episodes where my legs would get shaky and I felt as though I would pass out. I went to the doctor about once a month from November-March and changed medicines because we thought these episodes were side effects from the current medication I was taking.

It wasn't until my school nurse asked to feel my thyroid that I got any real results. Turns out my thyroid was HUGE! It was producing hormones at a rate of 85% where it should've been no higher than 30%. I had an ultrasound done to rule out thyroid cancer and then I had a nuclear scan done to see just how BIG my thyroid was. After switching doctors because I wanted a second opinion, I began taking a medication to slow the production of my thyroid (methimazole) and a beta-blocker to regulate my heart. My heart rate would go up to 120 and then down to 58 with no rhyme or reason. This made me terrible!!! I was out of work in March for 2 weeks! During this time I had lost all strength. I couldn't walk to the bathroom by myself much less take care of my 1 and 4 year old. :( March is also the month that both my babies celebrate their birthdays so that was a bit challenging!

We did a LOT of this in March and April! =)

My doctor wanted me to stay on my medications all of April and then do an ablation to destroy my thyroid completely. At the beginning of May we looked at my bloodwork and because I was "stable", I begged him to wait until school was out to do my ablation. I knew I wouldn't be allowed around children for a week and didn't want to miss anymore time away from my students.

This brings me to today. I went this past Monday to receive my I-131 pill (Radioactive Iodine Therapy). It was an ordeal to do all the paperwork and have different doctors come in to verify the dosage and then escort me out of the office (they don't want radioactive people just hanging around). But everything has worked perfectly. I came straight home and went to my bedroom. For 48 hours, I had to stay put and not spend time around anyone (husband included). Thank goodness for internet!

When Asten gets home this evening, I can spend a little more time around him but we can't sleep together or use the same bathroom. Tomorrow will be a little more normal as we will be able to sleep together and use the same bathroom. I can be around adults beginning tomorrow at 9:00 (72 hours after taking my pill). But, I cant spend any time with pregnant women or children until Monday (9:00 am). So my sweet in laws have been taking care of Grady and Josie. They will have them until Monday morning. I got to see/talk to them last night thanks to our ipad and "FaceTime". They're doing great! They are at school today and will go again tomorrow. It's not been as bad as I thought it would be. But, I'm definitely ready to get on with my "normal routines!"
Here are the kids last night visiting with their daddy!


We've been busy, busy with our summer so far! But we've enjoyed doing these things:
1. Visiting the Creative Discovery Museum

2. Going to see Madagascar 3

3. Going to the beach (Gulf Shores) for my friend, Amy's, wedding!!!

4. Wearing flip flops

5. Celebrating Father's Day

6. Going to karate class

7. Playing inside because it's soo HOT outside!!!

8. Relaxing

9. Swimming with Brock

10. Enjoying these lazy days!!!

We looove summer!!!