Thursday, November 21, 2013

A year of many thanks

With Thanksgiving just ONE week away I thought I would take the time to list all I am thankful for.  It has been one of the hardest yet rewarding years. November is a time to be thankful, so here is a reason that I am thankful for everyday of this month.

1.  My two beautiful, loving, crazy, energetic, passionate kids who are my heart
2.  My amazing partner and best friend, who still makes me laugh and who is my soul
3.  Matt's parents and my parents for taking rotating shifts to help out with Colin and Katherine before, during, and after Colin's surgery
4. My brother and sister in law for all their help this summer watching Katherine and visiting Colin in the hospital
5. A house full of laughter, love, and silliness
6. For many many family fun trips this year (New Braunfuls (twice), Port Aransas, Lake Travis, Galveston, College Station for Aggie Baseball, and Fort Worth)
7. 10 years of marriage and loving each other more and more every year
8.  All our friends who came to visit in the hospital, sent care packages, cookies, games, and of course their prayers
9. Colin's new found energy – It is amazing to see him run and play and for the first time in his life, not get winded!
10. Katherine's heart of gold – she is more thoughtful and loving than anyone I know
11. Beach, pool, tubing, and water-slide days
12. Matt and Jennifer fun trips to reconnect (Charleston, Gruene, and College Station for the Aggie Football Game)
13. Two great schools that offer a wonderful learning environment for both kids
14. Girl scouts – though it's hard work being the troop leader, it is very rewarding and something that Katherine and I will always share
15. Family - we have family all over that supports us
16. Hide and seek, craft time, story time, family movies cuddled up in our bed, hiking, Wii battles, swing sets.. basically our everyday family life with each other
17. Friends that are there not just in the fun times (tubing down the river with you) but also in the darkest of times when you need it the most, and that bring wine with them J
18. Colin's new found love of food – we struggled with eating and weight gain for 4 years, hopefully we now have it behind us!
19. Karaoke machine – Love hearing the kids belt out all the teeny bopper songs (Katherine – we are never ever getting back together… Colin – this girl is on fire)
20. My job that has allowed me to grow in my career but is also so support of the need for family/life balance
21. Girl time with Katherine and a 7 year old who is not too old to fall asleep in my lap
22. Colin's loving and cuddly nature, his love of life and excitement
23. My children are thoughtful and think of others – when mentioning Christmas the other week, they got excited about making cookies and taking them up to the hospital like we have done the last 3 years in a row. Their first thought was not about toys but other people.
24. Texas Children's hospital – this place has given Colin life, I am so thankful for all the doctors, nurses, child life advocates, and staff
25. That Colin got to come back home – some kids don't have the chance to ever come back home after major surgery. I am so thankful he is still here with us.
26. Aggie Football – yes, you read that correctly. It has been a great fun season and we love having friends over to watch the games. The kids are big Aggie fans and love to sport their Aggie gear.
27. God's love and support and our amazing guardian angels watching us from heaven.
28. Support from my heart family network
29. Bucees – Okay here me out on this one.. the kids love to go there after school for a treat, we always make a stop on road trips when the kids need to get out a stretch their legs. The smile on their face when we are at the register getting an Icee is priceless.

And last by definitely not least:

30. My life. I am thankful to have the life I have. It is not always easy, it has its ups and downs, but it is an amazing life with the people I love. It may not be perfect but it is perfect for me. I have two wonderful children and a husband I adore. We have a great support system of family and friends. We are active and cherish what life has to offer. We cherish each other and the time we spend together. This year has been a very emotional one but it has made us stronger as a family. And for that I am truly thankful! 

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Where to EVEN Start???

Where to even start??? Guess that's what happens when I only update the blog once a month and we have BEEN busy!

Colin's Developmental Assessment
Colin had an appointment with the Heart Center to see where he is developmentally (both physically and academically). They have started tracking kids with a heart condition a little closer on this level. Colin tested on par for physically for a kid his age and a little above academically. He will go see them in a year to be tested again. What I loved about this appointment is he had breakfast before we left (4 white powdered donuts) and then when we got to the hospital early, he had a breakfast taco while we waited. He has been eating so good, after fighting and crying about food for 4 years, it is a blessing to have him WANT to eat. He has gained 5 pounds since he left the hospital and is 2 pounds more than what he was before surgery.

Matt and Jennifer's Day Of FUN, FOOTBALL, FOOD, and well Shots at 8:30am!
Matt and I went to the A&M vs Vanderbilt game at A&M the last weekend of October. It was an early game (11:30am) so we got up to College Station at 8:00am and well hit the bars for a little bit for "tailgating" before heading over to the game. It was a nice day for football, sunny and high of 70. The Aggies won and Matt and I went back to tailgate some more and ran into some old friends of his. It was a great day. We are looking forward to taking the kids next year to their first game, we think they will be old enough to sit for 3 hrs for football!

The kids of course had fun trick or treating with their friends. Katherine was a black cat and I was touched she asked me to dress up like her. I know one day, she will be "too embarrassed" for her mom to dress like her, so I really do treasure it now while she is young. Colin was a boxer which is so fitting because he is really a TRUE FIGHTER! Matt was his trainer.

Our pumpkins

Trip to Forth Worth

The first weekend of November we drove up to Fort Worth to spend the weekend with our friends. The kids loved seeing Keira and Liam again, the kids last saw them at the river for Katherine's birthday weekend. We had a great time visiting and going to the Natural Science Museum where the kids got to dig for dinosaur bones, lay on a bed of nails, create paper airplanes, and learn a lot about science. Before we left we got to visit with my aunt who recently moved to the area, it was a short visit but we get to see her again for Thanksgiving.

Other random things
- Katherine's troop earned their first badge. It is a lot of work being their troop leader, but to see Katherine's face when she puts on her vest and when she earned her badge, it is all work it.
- I am so blessed with having such sweet children. We were talking about Christmas coming up and Katherine said she liked Christmas because we make cookies and take them up to the hospital. They both got so excited that they wanted to make them right now to take to the people at the hospital. It was so touching that when they thought about Christmas, it wasn't about toys, it was about other people.