Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Ike is Two and other updates..

Holly Crazy Fall. It was nuts. New job. Ike has a new school. Luke's mom in and out of the hospital with multiple surgeries, Sculley in kidney failure, my step dad had surgery, my brother is now engaged...but the thing that I think about the most, the thing I haven't yet talked about, is the maggots.

In September, during the crazy mix of hospital visits, we had maggots in our house-in our kitchen. I had already called in sick this day because I had cried myself into a migraine. My step mom was already coming over to sit with Sculley, because we thought it was "the end". Luke and Ike are getting ready to leave for school and work, respectively, when Ike says in perfect clarity, "what is that?". What is what? How did he say that so clearly? (then it was a big deal-now 2 1/2 months latter he is throwing out super clear words and sentences like crazy, but then I was stopped in my pajamas.)

It was a maggot. Then another maggot. Then we started looking around the kitchen, living room, laundry room, dining room and entry way....they were EVERYWHERE!!! In the mists of all the crazy, we had apparently NOT taken the trash out in a timely fashion. It was very hot outside as well, and I'm told, perfect breeding weather for FLIES.

I HATE dirtiness. Hate it. I have been accused of being messy, but dirty I am not. I clean and clean and hire people to clean. Not to say that my house is "clean", because it is normally not. We have mail on the counter, coats and bags on the table, there is usually dog hair on the floor, but I vacuum and mop and dust like a maniac. The mess is something different.

Maggots were the last-last straw. I started crying and could not come up with any plan on remediating the problem. Luke and Ike had to leave and I was in disrepair. I could not think of anything to make my life better at that point. Enter my step mom, who did not listen to my message or read my text not to come. She totally calmed me down and got me back where I needed to be. (wanted to give her some props, but back to the maggots.)

So I started to vacuum them up with my incredible dyson and they kept coming. I vacuumed the same area for what seemed to be an hour. They kept coming out from the woodwork-seriously. And I should have thought about that, because (you guessed it) five days latter was FLIES.

We had 25+ flies in our house EVERY NIGHT. Every night for a month. Luke was KILLING and average of 12-20 a day. And we were NOT killing them ALL every night. Seriously it was horrible. We felt like the Feed the Children commercials. We couldn't eat here, we could cook. We had to cover our cups we were drinking out of because flies would land on them. And the little bastards got brave and had NO problem landing on us. After all we were their home.

It may sound petty, but it was one of the worst experiences. Mainly because of my unique ability to block out really bad experiences, as if they never occurred, and I have been fortunate enough not to have many bad experiences. But I'll tell you the flies and maggots were not funny at all until now.
In other news... Things really seem to be looking up around here. Ike is, of course, doing well. He is the smartest in his class and most likely the smartest two-year old and the most handsome in the entire world.
(Please ignore the bad picture of me). Ike has taken to mimicking us. For example, the other night he decided to read us his book, get off the chair, walk to the edge of his crib, sing us the song we sing to him while rocking back and forth like we do, and then proceeded to his prayer. Apparently he is tired of his routine. The best part is he was laughing the entire time.
I will try to post more often. It is hard now because the State of Oklahoma doesn't allow Blogger on their computers. I am fighting this now. I totally believe the Oklahoma tax payers would love me to check my blogs on my work computer instead of having to read them on the small screen on my iphone. I believe anyone would agree with me. What do they want me to do all day? Work?

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Happy Ikeaversary!

It's crazy being a parent in general. One crazy thing is that everything in the beginning is counted in months. "My son is __ months old", "he has been home for ____ months". Finally we are ending counting our lives in months.

Ike has officially been home for an entire year. This is crazy. A year ago we were sleep deprived and freaking out. A year ago Ike was sucking a bottle. A year ago I had no idea how to interact with a child much less what to do with him. Yet somehow we made it and Ike seems extremely well adjusted by anyone's standards.

And I've turned into such a mom. For example, all I ever want to do is sleep in. Before Ike (since I worked for myself) I normally never got out of bed before 8 and anytime before 10 I felt like I was off to a good start. I spend most of my mornings dreaming of sleeping till 8 or 9. It NEVER happens. Even if Ike is spending the night with my mom, we still have Sculley and Mulder who are used to eating at a certain time. Plus Luke is a HUGE morning person. This morning, the clock hit 7am. The dogs were still asleep, Ike was still asleep, Luke was still asleep. By 7:30, Luke is out of bed, but everyone else is still asleep. So, by this time I am freaking out about Ike. By 8 I'm so worried it is crazy. All I can think about is that Ike was so tired the day before, he MUST be sick. I'm worried he is in there with a fever, he's thrown up, he's deathly ill, something is definitely wrong. I go in there, of course he wakes up, and he is perfectly fine and his super happy self.

I also worry constantly that Ike will be disappointed latter in life that I have not made him a baby book or why I haven't written him a letter since he came home. That he will wonder why there are not that many non blurry pictures of his face or something else no boy ever cares about.

For the biggest Ikeaversary, some of my family (20 of us, sorry to the one's who didn't come. It grew exponentially and the place wasn't that big) went to a restaurant. We were there for about two hours and past Ike's strict bedtime. Ike went around to everyone at the table and said "bye, bye Papa", "bye, bye____" until he reached the point of his beginning, looked at me and said "momma, I go now". So we left.

I hope to post more pictures soon. A brief update... Sculley is still stable. Luke's mom is out of the hospital and seems to be getting better. We are still hoping for her to make a full recovery.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

If you are in the process...

And you want to raise money, Check this out!

You have exactly one day left to sign up, but if you do Ordinary Hero will give you a portion of her t-shirt sales! Thats a great deal! I have several of these t-shirts and just bought 4 more for gifts and for Ike. I love them. I actually am wearing one right now. Their logo is "change the world for one". I think this is perfect.

This blog is amazing and inspiring. I would highly recommend it.

Where Have I Been???

First of all we have have a crazy couple of months. Luke's mom has been in the hospital twice, including currently. She has has 3 emergency surgeries. We think she is finally doing better. My step-dad also had surgery on his hand and wrist.

Sculley was also in the hospital for a week. She was sick as a puppy and it ruined one kidney and made the other one operate a a faction of what it should. She has been on special food and filtered water for the last 6 years. But she has been fine. This summer we noticed her really slowing down. We thought it might be the heat. Or maybe she was depressed because I started working outside of the house and were gone more often. Then, one day, she started throwing up, and I mean everything. I took her to our vet, who has saved her life more than once. She didn't call me all day and then when I got there she wanted to see me. I knew something was horribly wrong. Sculley is in severe kidney failure. I had to rush her to the emergency vet, where she was able to get 24 hour care. They had her on a IV for 7 days trying to flush out her kidney. Then they told me there was nothing else they could do and we should take her home.

We are devastated. She looked fine, but we could tell how sick she was and it was obvious that the vets there had no hope. Her 'numbers' were higher (and still are) than most dogs who die of kidney failure.

Our vet recommend actions (we had already read about this on the internet as well). We now give her a few over the counter medicines everyday and (here's the kicker) we have to give her 500ml of IV fluid with a 10 gauge needle subcutaneously every other day. She looks like a camel for a few minutes and then it absorbs into her body. I can't bring myself to to it, so Luke has too. This is not a permanent fix, but she seems to be doing okay. It has been over a month. She eats, she takes short walks, she plays a bit. We will see.

I have cried more times at my new office then I have cried in years combined. I'm sure they think I am a basket case.

Other than all of that, things are going well. I am in the mists of planning Ike's birthday. And in a week or so we will have officially been parents for one whole year. Which means we did it! Whew! (hope you like the pictures. He will never look at me when I am trying to take one :)

Monday, November 1, 2010

Friday, September 24, 2010

Right Place Right Time?

People always say "right place, right time". But to believe that you would also have to believe the opposite, "wrong place, wrong time". This doesn't really fit in to my "make the most of it" attitude.
I am one of those people that believe there is a 'reason for everything' and 'God has a plan'. I met Luke at a college retreat I did not want to go to, and I almost didn't go to that college and neither did he-I believe God gave me Luke. Ike's birth mother made the heart wrenching decision to put him in an orphanage at the exact same time that lead up to us being ready to adopt a baby. God gave us Ike, even though the events that lead up to this were tragic.
Luke's biological father was killed in a helicopter accident in the 1980's in Oklahoma. Instead of his mom moving back to the east coast, which was her plan, she stayed here, married, and he adopted Luke and years latter we met. If Luke's dad wouldn't have tragically died, we most likely would not have met, gotten married and adopted Ike.
These examples (except the college one) are of something beautiful coming out of something absolutely horrible. I can see how good things happen out of extremely bad circumstances, sometimes...
This is easy to believe when you live an easy life. I was born in Oklahoma to a loving family who provided me with the opportunity to be anything I wanted. The woman I sponsor through Women for Women was born in Rwanda during the same time frame. She has probably witnessed, and been involved in, more horrific tragic events than I could ever even imagine. We are subject to the time and circumstances of our birth. And what about the 147 million children in the world who need a home? How do these ideals fit into their life? How can I come up with these rainbow outcomes when so many people are suffering and there are so many horrible tragedies in the word?
Someone said to me recently, "into every life, a little rain must fall". I'm not sure what this even means. I'm from Oklahoma. In Oklahoma, rain is a miracle. Rain brings life, rain grows crops, rain bring down the dust. But rain also takes the sunshine away.
Early this week a bright ray of sunshine was taken away from our world. My friend was ruthlessly murdered in ____ where he was living. He was from El Paso and he worked in that city. But he was living in ______ because his wife just got her citizenship. They were planing on moving to the other side of the border soon. He was surrounded and shot in front of his wife and two children over what, we can only imagine, a mistaken identity. He was a clear a bright ray of sunshine. He was probably the nicest, most caring and friendly person I have ever met. It would be impossible for anyone to count the number of friends he had made in his short life. I would guess that number to be all the people whom he was ever introduced.
Of course we are all in shock and in a state of extreme sadness.
I was fortunate enough to be able to hang out with him one last time this summer. I had actually not seen him since college, 10 years ago. I asked him, "is it really as bad as they say in _____?", his reply, "yes".
In my naive, sheltered mind, things like this happen to other people. Gang violence happens to people who are affiliated with a gang or CEO's of large companies that get kidnapped. Not beautiful, working family men.
Where is the sliver lining in this nightmare of a story? How can anything good ever come out of this? Will his children know how much he loved them? Will his wife be okay?
I can only pray that in some twisted mixed up way, something good will grow after this storm.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

To New Mexico and Back Again.

You may or may not have been reading my little uneventful, non-flowing blog for long enough to know that we have been driving to New Mexico every year to buy green chiles, art and whatever else. This year, Luke decided about a month before we were going to leave that driving 10 hours with a 1.5 year old is not a good idea if you have other options. SO we went first class instead.

Luke planned out the entire vacation by himself! Not that he is incapable, it's just that I have always planned out our trips. He did a fantastic job. Luke is not as cheap as I am so we did everything in style. And I liked it!

We usually drive, because we buy things, like art and green chiles, that cannot be flown back. This year my friend got us green chiles and drove them back for us and we shipped our new art. Anyway, we flew and flew first class-which rocks. I have enough miles on some airlines that I get bumped up but they don't go to NM. Fortunately, United is super cheap to by an upgrade, especially when you count up the dollars you save by not having to pay to check bags. (remember when you could check bags for free and airline people were nice and respectful? Remember when it wasn't a nightmare to fly and you didn't have to take off most of your clothes to get through security?)

When I book our travel I get the cheapest car possible-Luke got us an Acadia (Cassie, I remember that you wanted one of these and I pooed it. Now I want one) it was really nice! Luke also booked us a great house at Casa Gallina. It was fabulous! We got there and Richard (the owner) had left out a bunch of snacks, mint water and a bottle of wine! Awesome! Everything was beautiful. His house, the chickens, the food, his garden, his lot, his furnishings. Amazing. I thought we should just rent a one bed or studio. Luke said two bedrooms. Good choice. Ike just goes to bed so early it would be hard to have a nice time. Not that we are staying up late. I went to bed at 8;45 last night??

This year, we went to the Taos Music Festival-which Ike of course loved, The bernillo wine festival-Ike Loved and I'm not sure what else we did? We did go tour the Earth Ship, which is a home built out of only recycled and sustainable material that generates all of its own electricity.We also did some mandatory site seeing of things we like to go back too and things we have never made a point to see.
We spent a lot of time relaxing and eating fresh eggs and fruit from Richards garden.
And mainly spent time with each other. Ike is a great traveler. He was even having some stomach issues and still had a great time. He flies like no one business and takes long car trips like a champ. He had no issue sleeping in new places and meeting new people (of course we new this from all the other places he has been made to visit)
This was our first alone family vacation. In January, we went skiing with friends. He had only been home a little over a month and was a poor decision on our part. Ike had altitude sickness, he also got sick and didn't care for the day care that we put him in while we skied. I know-bad call. But it all worked out okay.

In February, he went to Florida to see his great aunt and uncle and grandpa and Edith. He loved it and did great.
In March he went on a business trip to Washington, D.C. He did enjoy his nations capital. Then we waited a whole 6 months before we did anything else, mainly due to my work schedule and Luke's travel schedule. And we really wanted to go out of the country but Ike didn't have a passport till recently and I had accidently let mine expire.

In other news, Ike received his Certificate of Citizenship this week, which is what any citizen born out of the country must get in order to prove citizenship. Now the only thing I have left is to get his SS card in his new name and there is nothing else. wew!

Hope all of my miscellaneous readers are doing well.