Wednesday, September 22, 2010

A beautiful scan......and a chance celebrity siting

Travis has his semi-annual MRI and check up yesterday. Boy, that comes faster than it should. So we headed down to St. Joseph's Hospital in the morning first for his scan and then for a visit with his doctor, Dr. Brachman. We know the drill all too well since we've been doing it for a couple years now.

Travis is always a little stressed and apprehensive about the MRI. He had a bad experience with nausea early on and it left a bad association. Fortunately, with all the practice, he has gotten really good at it! The scan went smoothly and quickly. We then met with Dr. Brachman. He was in a meeting so we had to wait a while, but when he finally entered the room he said, "The scan looks beautiful!"

We were so relieved!

The tumor is even more difficult to see since the last scan and the contrast between the tumor and brain stem is difficult to differentiate. We were just so happy to get great news.

The doctor also said that we can start coming just once a year for check ups. Wow! We like that.

The only "symptom" or problem Travis is having is from the surgery. He has tightness in the muscles and tendons that were cut during the surgery. He will begin some physical therapy to help that out.
We got a last minute call from our friends at Make a Wish with box tickets to the D-Backs game last night. The seats were right behind home plate........amazing seats.

The kids were so excited and we settled into our seats to watch the game. A few minutes later, a group came from the field tunnel and sat down a couple rows in front of us. I noticed one of the girls looked vaguely familiar. In fact, I thought she looked like Kristen Stewart who plays Bella in the Twilight movies. She has bleached out frizzy hair and no makeup on. She was wearing a sleeveless, thin white t-shirt with a black bra under it. She has on slouchy skinny jeans and dirty white vans on. Very casual, almost grungy. So I took a picture of her with my I-phone. But I wasn't completely sure. Then a dad with his daughter approached her and took a picture with her. It was Kristen Stewart!!!
So I grabbed my camera and Olivia and walked up to her. She was sweet to let me get her picture with Olivia. She didn't stay long so I'm glad I took advantage of the opportunity when I did.

Kind of cool, huh?

It was a great day. I am very thankful for the amazing restoration of health Travis has experienced. As always, I am reminded of a loving Heavenly Father who continues to bless me and my family.

Monday, September 13, 2010

lots of birthdays and lost teeth...

Today is my sweet baby boy, Ryan's, 6th birthday.

This is me ready to leave for the hospital exactly 6 years ago today to deliver Ryan.
Travis with Ryan at the hospital. Ryan was born almost 9 1/2 pounds so he looked like a 3 month old at birth! He was the cutest baby ever.......
Now he goes to school all day, he just lost his first 2 teeth and he is growing up fast. It's a thrill to watch him have these experiences but a part of me is sad. I know all moms go through this......but it's one thing to hear about it and entirely different to live it. He still lets me kiss and hug him, read him stories and tuck him in at night; but things are changing and it's the beginning of a new era for me. (and him)

Ryan, I love you so much. You were the best surprise of my life. Thanks for your silly humor, your energy, your funny faces and mannerisms and your sweet, cuddly ways. You light up a room and everyone loves to be around you. You have many gifts and talents and I can't wait to see what you do with them.

Happy Birthday!!!
We celebrated with homemade pizza. We have a tradition on birthdays....I make the birthday honoree whatever dinner they desire. Ryan is a picky eater. That's no secret. When I asked him what I could make him, he said, "Chick Fil-A." I stated that this was NOT a homemade meal. He then said, "Orange Chicken from Panda Express." I told him again, that this was NOT a homemade meal. Finally, he said that I could make pizza, since this can be made at home. He sure knows how to make me feel good.
Travis and Ryan working on a new Legos Star Wars set.
Ryan making his wish and blowing out his candle at his party this afternoon.
The "Party Bus"........Ryan with his buddies from last years' preschool. He loves those boys!
I need to recap the past several weeks........we have been partying non-stop and I am offically partied OUT!

Ethan and Ella turned 8 on August 7th.

We started the day with a trip to Krispy Kreme for their free dozen doughnuts.
They were so excited to get a dozen ALL to themselves. Thankfully, they shared.
We did double duty with the birthday parties.
Ella got the first party in the AM:
Ella chose vanilla cupcakes. By the way, her dinner choice was crepes. We had them for brunch on Sunday.....
Ella has a swim party with LOTS of girls. They were adorable and such great guests.
Ethan has his party in the PM and it was pretty much a "do over" of the morning party, except with LOTS of boys. They too, were adorable, but I was worn out by then.
Ethan making a wish with his chocolate cupcake. His dinner choice was rotisserie chicken with garlic mashed potatoes and french bread. (I picked the chicken up at that cheating?)
Ella has been wanting a DS like the boys, so we finally got her one:
Travis wanted to get Ethan his first pocket knife...a Swiss Army Knife. Very dangerous and very trusting of us parents to give to an 8 year old.

FYI...Travis confiscated it shortly after when he over heard Ethan and Ella arguing and Ethan stating, while holding the knife, "I will defend myself." YIKES!!! I'm not sure when he will get it back......
Since the kids turned 8, our family tradition is giving them a set of scriptures with their names engraved on them.
Fast forward 8 days to August 15th.......

Travis and Olivia share a birthday. Poor Travis continues to get the short end of the stick.
But I did make him his favorite cake...his mom's German Chocolate Cake.

Olivia turned 12 and received her long awaited cell phone. Again, YIKES! I'm not sure we are ready for this. She is growing up so fast. What a beautiful, mature and sweet girl she is. I am so thankful to be her mom. She makes me so proud. She is creative, imaginative, is great with the kids, (when she chooses to be) is so helpful around the house when I ask her. She is a fiercely loyal friend and loves to laugh. What a lucky mom I am! I'm also so proud of her for hanging in there with the piano. (it's a family rule that she takes lessons and practices everyday even though it's not her choice) I love you, Livs!
Travis received some golf shoes, balls and a new glove. (we are still paying for his
Father's Day gift, the I-Pad!)
Olivia became a Beehive in church! The Beehive class decorated our front door with lots of sweet messages and Beehive paraphernalia and cookies. I love this picture because Ruby is peeking out the window. So cute!
Olivia had a party with lots of friends and played, "Minute to Win it." It was such a blast!

Olivia makes a wish and enjoys her cupcake. (I have made approximately 96 cupcakes in the past 5 weeks)
Now onto the next BIG event in our family........

Ethan and Ella get baptized.
What a special day. I love to see Ethan in his first suit and Ella all in white. They are such beautiful and special kids. I'm truly grateful to have a wonderful husband who holds the Priesthood and is able to baptize our kids.
We have such a supportive family. Here is the Adams side:
Here is the Williams side:
We also had lots of friends and loved ones come and support our family. We love all our amazing friends and family!
Following the baptism and confirmation, we had a "dessert bar" at our home. It was scrumptious and everyone ate themselves silly with desserts.

And of course, here we have the "First Day of School".
Ethan and Ella became 2nd graders while Ryan started kindergarten....ALL day!
And here we have our big junior high girl.....ooooh! Olivia begins 7th grade.
How cute is she? For the first time in her life, she is riding the bus too! She gets up at the crack of dawn to get beautified and get ready. She is kind of a slow mover in the morning. She is doing remarkably well and I'm so proud of her. Sadly, she told me that she does miss 6th grade. It's hard to change classes every hour and have so many teachers. She is still adjusting but doing an amazing job in all her classes so far!

Lastly, I must report that we have a record number of lost teeth in the Williams home.

On July 26th, Ella lost her first top front tooth. I yanked it with the pliers, and unfortunately it took a couple tries. She was a great sport but it got her a little nervous for the next go round.
Almost a month and a half later, on September 10th, we got the second one out. I worked on it for a week and it was not a fun experience. I finally got it out with the pliers after 2 hours of wiggling it last Friday night. Her permanent teeth were almost completely grown in behind the baby teeth. Did I mention I have sharks for kids when it comes to teeth?
On August 24th, Ryan lost his first bottom baby tooth. He too, had his permanent teeth growing in behind them and it was overdue to get those babies out of there. I had to hold him down and coerce him into letting me pull it out. He was hysterical. Can you tell how much he'd been crying in this picture?
2 weeks later we got the other one out with about the same amount of drama. This time I yanked it out using a washcloth. Not bad. I didn't even go to dental school. He recovered more quickly on this one. The tooth fairy has been very busy in our home and overly generous. OUCH!