Sunday, January 16, 2011

No Tutu...No Problem!

Ella is picky about her wardrobe these days! If you notice, she is wearing a purple flower in her hair...she picks this one out every time. She picked out her shirt as well. I was trying to get her to wear tights like the "ballerinas" do and so we had to go to the computer and show her how ballerinas wear tights (it was too cool to go without them even in the house I felt) Anyway, we showed her and she fell in love with the tutus that the ballerina were wearing. She has had one in the past, but it was pretty worn so I had to throw it away.

No ordinary skirt would do...we "had" to have a tutu!

So what does her grandma whip up?!


Good job grandma!


We finally got to use the sleds for the first time, that the boys got for Christmas! Wasn't quite the KC snow we used to get, but that is ok...we all had such a blast. We have several great hills we can sled off of and at the bottom of one, we built a campfire to "cozy" up to while sledding.

You will have to excuse me...I am sporting a "no makeup" look.

No LL Bean for us...Luke has the trusty "Carharts" on!

Tea Time

This girl is "all girl". Having two older would think that she would play with cars, little men, or something "boyish". But not Miss Ella. She picked out this dress to wear, these glasses, this bow, had to have on her butterfly ring. I am loving every minute of spending time with my health little girl!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Long December continued....

Whew...what a time we have had last month (December). We had one good day after Luke's illness, when Ella began the same symptoms. Hers lasted a little entire week.

She would "writhe" in intense pain along with vomiting due to the pain. It was so horrible. Unlike Luke, she would eat and drink some, but she had diarrhea where he did not. We called MD and figured it was Mesenteric Adenitis...same as Luke.

Then after a week, she began to throw up one day. Then the next day her urine became amber color...dark tea color. Shawn did a "dip" test on it and it showed lots of blood, some other abnormalities. We call MD and both agree that it must be nephritis which the Pediatrician at Children's warned us about with Luke. Her eyes were puffy and she was pale, all which we attributed to being so sick. A couple days before Christmas I call MD again and he said this should resolve, just watch her close. All the while, poor Ella was very tired :(

Her urine becomes pink, then slightly yellow so we think she is getting better. Then on Monday after Christmas, she begans to throw up again. The next day again. So Shawn and I decide we have to bring her in...enough is enough! Two weeks of sickness.
(Sure, I could skip all these details, but this is therapeutic for me to journal :)

So I take her in and the MD decides to do blood tests. Just what we wanted. She is stuck 6 times and finally we get the blood as well as urine test. That afternoon, the MD calls, she is anemic too much. Her kidney ratios are off some. He calls Children's Hospital, talks to docs. They say bring her in that night.

So off we go. They admit...and stick her a couple of more times with IVs. Her H & H is so low now, that she is having a heart murmur, heart rate increase, and increase in BP. They decide she must have a blood transfusion. So about 5 am, we get to the room and they transfuse. For several days, they try to decide what is going on. Her blood cells are being destroyed...what is the cause. They rule out kidney issues. Although apparently with the amount of blood in her urine, she narrowly escaped acute kidney failure.

They do more tests and decide that she has hemolytic anemia. They still don't know the cause. They know it isn't autoimmune. They think she might have a genetic blood disorder in which the cells become misshapen in an event of stress...hers being the viral bowel infection.

She was discharged last night. Her hemoglobin is still low, but reasonable. We will recheck on Friday. Then follow up with Hematologist in two months (now that she has someone else's blood circulating, they are unable to do more blood test to determine etiology for several months).

Shawn was there the whole time. He had taken off...we were to leave for Texas the morning after she was admitted. Who would have thought we would be there twice. Our children are healthy. They have not been very sick other than the general colds and virus here and there.

This time I was not alone in my experience. Shawn saw and felt the same intensity of Children's that I did when I was there a couple of weeks prior. He has been humbled by the experience like I was.

Today we have sat around and marveled at our children. Sat around and taken in the blessing of health and healing.

Today on 2011 we count our blessings.

Friday, December 31, 2010

Long December

Two visits in one month. We are home...she is better...I am exhausted.

More to follow....

Monday, December 27, 2010

archive photo

Just browsing thru old photos. This one is of ella summer 09. How time flies.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Blessed Beyond Measure

You know, every once in a while, experience something that changes a part of you, changes your experience that touches you...

Well I had that experience this week.

My Lukester was running fever and then began to have pain in his lower abdomen. Me, being a nurse, don't run my children to the doc right's probably just a "virus"...he will get better. That is until he began to have intense pain, pain so bad that he could not sleep...literally every 15 minutes, the poor baby moaned all night long. So we are thinking appendicitis. We go to local doc, CT evidence of appendicitis but could be early. WE go home, Luke doesn't eat or drink, up again all night in tears due to sleep. We make a run to Arkansas Children's hospital (which is two and half hours away). They do all kinds of tests. He is very dehydrated due not drinking as a result of the intensity of pain (literally begging me telling me to help him). It is so hard to see your child in this type of pain. As the day progresses to night, they keep him to evaluate and try to figure this out. Surgeons come, pediatricians, residents, interns...
He gets better the next day...long story short mesenteric adenitis... a virus in the colon that cause your lymph nodes inside the large intestine to inflame and swell causing intense pain. Who knew?! He gets better and better, we are discharged.

It has taken me two days not to get teary eyed throughout the day. You see, Children's Hospital has only children as patients...while this may seem obvious, it didn't really "set in" until I experienced it. Yes, I am a nurse and worked with "peds", but have not worked in a hospital where it was entirely kids. And back then, I was not a mother, I worked with the perspective of a nurse, not a mom with a sick one. It was so heartbreaking. Luke went to play (the day he was feeling better) at Camp Wanna Play. It is a play area set up for the kids. They made Rudolf cookies and got to decorate them, paint, play Wii or XBox, color,...all kinds of fun stuff. In there, we were surrounded by such precious ones that were sick. No hair, hair just growing back, ones like Luke that were just there short term, ones that had no parent there at that time and some that did. All of us had IV poles that the volunteers helped to navigate around to each area. While Luke played the XBOx, I couldn't help but just weep,so grateful Luke was doing better and pain was leaving and for seeing little ones riding in wagons with 4 or 5 IVs coming from their bodies. A group was the singing Christmas carols for the kids, State Police came around and gave out teddy bears. I knew Luke was going to be ok, going to get to go home. However, I greived so badly for the others, the little ones that didn't get to walk out to their car in the sunshine the day we left. The little ones that did not feel like coming to "Camp Wanna Play".

We are home now, but my mind is still there.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

back in business...i think

FINALLY...after a year, we have a computer with internet at home. Sooooo, I would like to think I will start blogging again...which i have missed so much. There have been so many times that I have thought "I should post that"...but the logistics were difficult.

That being said, I have a two year old now. One that is cute, one that is high energy, one that if she is quiet, you worry. One that you can't leave alone for more than make that two minutes. It was only a short hour ago I thought I would snuggle with Luke which I did for almost ten minutes...and all the while little miss was in my bathroom, painting her body with my makeup and also painting the walls with my high dollar (at least to me) face cream...emptied the whole thing...

So material for this blog should not be lacking in this stage of my life. Nope, not with miss Ella Bella around!

SO whoever is reading this...whoever still checks this...hope it is not that long before I have another post again~

Friday, July 23, 2010


You know what is priceless...laughing with old friends. (old as in...have known for a long time...not talking age here...of course)

Shawn and I was fortunate to be in the "Promise Land" this past week (for those of you who don't know what I am talking about...I am talking about Texas). We caught up with Rob and Shavon. We had such a good time. Shavon and I did not stop talking long enough to take a breath! We laughed about our fun times together, ski trips, exercising, Chilly Willy, JBU...we had the best time. I wanted to post their pic for all you JBU friends out there. We need a reunion soon. The cutie pie in the middle is their baby girl Isabella. She is four years old and has a sweet personality, not to mention adorable.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

More Beach Pics

Here are some more beach pics...I like this one of Ella in her bikini...which her dad does not approve of...notice how happy Jett is to have his picture take "again".

Destin is usually has very clear water...but a week out of every year usually around June, they have green week. This is when the moss comes hit the week we were there. It was kind of gross, but much better than oil. So as a result, make beach pics are not as nice as last years.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Attention: This Blog is not dead!

I read this headline on a friend's blog not long ago and felt it would be appropriate to add it to mine. You see I LOVE BLOGGING...I miss it terribly and now that I am at home more you would think I would update more. However, my computer is dead or near dead at home. However, my blog is not. And when I work on Tuesday, into the evening, I like to sneak a post between don't think I'm not working "boss"...I'm blogging on my ten minute break, you see! So I thought I might share a pic or two!

We went to Destin recently and had a blast! Here a just a couple of pics...

Here is Shawn and my dad on their new bikes. Every morning they would get up early and ride! Notice the sweet street legal golf cart in the garage behind them :)

Miss Ella Bella eating seafood! She loved the sand...and so much easier this year now she can walk...instead of having to crawl on the beach like last year!

Here are the kiddos...I actually can not believe I got them to all look at the camra at the same if I could get them all to smile at the same time!

So I suppose next time I should post some of the actual beach LOL!

Friday, May 7, 2010


Bittersweet...I like this word. It seems to adequately describe lots of things in life...

But today it fits really well.

I just returned from Ozarka, where I put in my notice. I am giving up my teaching job.

I loved this job...absoutely love the job. I never dreaded work. I loved teaching my "kids" about the human body, how to care for it, how to care for others. I loved opening their eyes about the elderly, trying to get them to break down sterotypes and see beyond the outside. I loved giving them oppurtunities to learn about all the many types of healthcare there is and encouraging them to persue a higher education. I loved hearing their stories and being around the energy of teenagers. I loved praying for them, silently, and their struggles. I loved praying over their chairs where they sit before or after class. I love their "quirks", their smiles, thier moods...everything.

But for once, I feel like a can breathe. It is such a relief, now that I will be able to focus on billing at the office and give Ella more time, as well as the boys. Time that has been taken away from them due to trying to "juggle" too many things. Time to hold my baby in the morning when she is extra "snuggly", time to stay home when one of my little ones don't feel well, time to go on a field trip or two with the boys, time to actually cook perhaps, or time to sew...

One day, I feel like I will do this again. Maybe once Ella starts school, I can teach a course or two for adults or even maybe this one will open back up. I know I have done the right thing, and it feels good.

Bittersweet...that is my word for today!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Toto, we're not in Kansas City anymore...

So I was reading off the announcements to my class this morning when I read about a new scholarship opportunity for seniors...

It was offered by the Arkansas Turkey Association...

They are giving away a scholarship. The criteria...3.0 and a hunting license.

Need I say more?

I think I must of laughed a little too hard. One of my students tried to lock me out of my classroom.

Also, I was notified by a friend, that one of the local restaurants offers Fried Bologna as a breakfast menu item.

Also, yesterday while in Sunday School, we were talking and a friend reported that she decided to do some yard work yesterday, but was interrupted when her mom came out of the house to tell her that someone just called and said her "thong" was showing from her top side of her sweats...I mean really...we are in a small town, but who has time to report such "news"? She decided that the water dept girls across the street must have seen it, called a hundred people, until one brave soul called to report it.

COmputer still down at home, so hence the wide gap in posts.

Oh, another thing. I was called a "nerd" from one of my students because I said I would blog about the scholarship. No, I don't normally let my students abuse my verbally, but I was in rare form today.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


It has been a while since I posted pictures of the little ones so here are some, along with an update on each child!

Jett is in 3rd grade and let me tell you, it is a lot harder than second grade! He has 5 teachers which makes it complicated. He is doing well reading like crazy these days...and loves basketball. He just finished Upward basketball and is now playing on a traveling team. Dad is his coach! He is now hunting with Shawn for the first time ever and loves it. They haven't shot anything yet...apparently they are holding out for the "big one"!

Luke is in Kindergarten. He liked it for the first week, but now would rather stay home! He is doing really well...teacher mentioned he could just about go ahead to the first grade! He just finished playing Upward Basketball as well. He is my quiet one...will find him upstairs drawing and playing without a peep for hours! That is unless he and his brother get in a fight!

Miss Ella Bella is so sweet! She is totally spoiled...come on, we are still living with grandparents here! She has each brother, dad, grandpa, wrapped around her finger. She is sooo active. Doesn't stay still for anything! She loves being outside and gets really excited when she sees cows! Lately, we have noticed some really "girly" things about her...she doesn't like bugs...even play bugs and pretend spiders...she refuses to touch them, loves carrying around a baby doll, and has such a great time with necklaces around her neck.

So there you have it, an update on the Fletcher Clan. Shawn in doing well...back to adjusting although somewhat modified! Feeling great!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Update For Ones Faraway

Shawn has dealt with, what we thought was, gastritis for several years. Well, he had another episode the weekend before last, that did not go away that caused him to "writhe" in the floor in pain. Throwing up and about passing out. He kept trying to down the Mylanta and not eat much. This started on Saturday, and all weekend he dealt with it easing up for a time, then starting again. The pain moved into the right upper quad. On monday, he just did not eat to avoid the pain...

Then, Tuesday at 4 am, he burst into the bedroom and reports that he just about passed out and needed to go to the ER.

No one was home (in laws were gone) so he "rode it out" for a couple more hours. Luke in the mean time, was running about 102 temp, so we decided that both of them would go in and get looked at.

We are on our way, shawn is about in the floor board in pain, luke is shivering, Jett is in the back seat, we drop Ella off, head to town, call the doc on the way...he tells us to go straight to the ER. We stop by the office, where shawn has a extra early patient waiting...I go in to cancel a couple of more patients when Shawn's aunt (who happens to be on duty at the ER) comes and picks him up in the parking lot so he can be seen quicker since I am not making it quick enough. I drop Jett off at school, go to the find my husband with some relief (the IV drugs work well). They offer to see Luke and make him put on a mask, but I refuse and call from the ER to make him an appiontment at the local doc, to avoid an extra $400 dollars. My in laws make it back into town, they get Luke to the doc and the MD tells me that Shawn needs to go by ambulance to a bigger hospital so they can do surgery....he had pancreatiis, elevated liver enzymes, increased bilirubin, and dehydrated all due to a very bad, bad gallbladder packed full of stones! So Shawn is taken to Batesville...

He had to be in the hospital for several days before they could operate due to pancreatitis. Finally after not eating for 5 days, the pacreatic enzymes decreased and they did surgery Thurs. evening laproscopically (thank goodness). he was discharged on Friday!

So needless to say he is sore, but recovering. The surgeon mentioned in could be a month before he could adjust...we are going to have to get creative here...we see him (the surgeon) tomorrow to "brainstorm" since a month is such a long time.

Just wanted to let everyone know about Shawn's adventure...