Thursday, December 17, 2009
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Monday, December 14, 2009
So today we went in for round 1 of testing.. blood work. Ephraim is getting to be such a trooper with all of this blood work being done. The great news today on the blood work is that they only had to poke him 1 time!!! Normally when he gets blood work done, he clots so quickly that they have to poke him again. So yeah for the 1 poke today!!!
People are laughing at me because I am praying that they find something with this blood work at the same time that I'm praying that they don't. Please pray with me on this too.
I should hopefully have all of the results by early next week
Monday, December 7, 2009
No milk- both liquid and in products
No soy- both in liquid and in products
No juice- thankfully we can have this in products :-)
and now... no rice milk
His fluid intake is water and Nutramigen (which by the way is VERY expensive). Solid food is whatever we can find without the above 3 ingredients.
Doesn't want to do any further testing for food allergies as he doesn't think he has them. I still believe he has a food allergy or intolerance to something (my prediction is still the soy)... This taking away yet another food ingredient is making this diet very difficult.
In January he goes to the doctor for his last round of shots... I think between now and then, I will keep a diary and give it to him at that time. I know it will only be a month, but when we first started taking away foods in June... they told me that I should start seeing improvements within a few days.
Thursday, December 3, 2009
I called back yesterday (December 2) at 1:30ish and said I was still waiting for a phone call on what the next steps will be for Ephraim and asked to speak to the Nurse or Doctor directly. She said that they are both with a patient, but would give them my message.
It is now December 3 at 4:20 and I still have not received a phone call. What do you think that I should do? How often should I be calling the office when it isn't a life threatening condition?
I want to get to the bottom of this... more for Ephraim's sake than my own.
Thanks for your time.
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
My life group (what my church calls a small group or bible study) decided to take on some service projects during the session year. The first one that we decided to do was put together a food box for a family during the Thanksgiving holiday. One of our group members uses Food Angel Ministries and they had a box of food for a good price. So we decided as a group to purchase one of these boxes.
We looked and looked for a family and nobody was speaking up until the day before Thanksgiving. A member of our church told us that we should call Love Inc. So, I gave Love a call but they did not know of any families at that time. The person who normally handles the food give-a-ways was on vacation, so they could not contact her to find out if there was a family in need. They told me to contact Mary ** at an agency called ACCESS.
I called Mary and got her voicemail. I was thinking that she was probably gone for the day and won't hear back until probably Friday (11/27) or Monday (11/30). Well, that night, she called back and told me about this family of 9 that needed some food. I'm thinking... 9 people, we only have enough food for a family of 4!!! I told her that I would contact the people in my group and see what we could do. Well... our group decided to go out and buy more food with all of the Thanksgiving deals that were going on. We got enough food so this family would have enough food for an extra meal. I called Mary on Monday morning and told them that we would help out this family. They gave me a name and number for a lady name Emily**. I also found out that Kim ** could deliver it on Tuesday (12/1) at the earliest... otherwise it would have to be during the weekend. Kim and her husband were storing the food at their house, so we kind of had to go on their schedule
So, I called Emily ** and asked if she would be around tomorrow (actually today now) so we could deliver some food for her and her family. I thought I gave her a heart attack on the phone because she was so overjoyed that we had food for her. I talked to her a little bit more and I found out she was feeding her kids water since Sunday!!! That's 2 days without food. I could not imagine (and I was feeding my kids lunch while I was talking to her)
I called Kim ** and told her the situation and asked if there was any way we could do this tonight. She said that she would do her best to find a babysitter for her kids and get out of work early. She even ran to the store and got some more food, so we could make a hot meal for them. I posted on my facebook page about this family, and I had people call me up saying they had some food for this family too. TJ and I ran around during the afternoon collecting food from different families.
By the time that we got all of the food in the back of the van... Emily would have enough food to feed her family for a few days, maybe even a week!!!
Once we got to Emily's house, we found not much around. Windows were broken and covered with plastic, a whole room of the house completely empty. She had what looked like 3 kids still in diapers. It was really sad, but it still brought smiles to our faces. There was this little boy who was around 3 years of age that got so excited about having milk. We were trying to pray for this family and this little boy was jumping around and yelling about this milk. It was so cute.
I wish you could have all been there and experienced this with me. I'm not the best storyteller and probably lost a lot of the details from last night. But God was definitely at work yesterday by us finding babysitters at last minute for both TJ and I and Kim's family, getting all of this extra food and being able to deliver it yesterday instead of waiting until today. Praise the Lord.
The bible verse... "I was hungry and you gave me something to eat" came to my mind last night while laying in bed. Thank-you Lord for giving us the resources to go and help this family.
**All names have been changed for their protection
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
The door to the boys room closes and the light switch goes on. Then I hear Micah take a bucket of toys and pour them into Ephraim's bed. Ephraim giggles. Micah climbs into Ephraim's bed and they play. I get to listen to them laugh and squeal for about 20 minutes before they start calling my name because they want to eat.
So not only do I get to stay in my nice cozy bed for 20 mins longer... I get to hear the little laughs, giggles and squeals of my little boys having the time of their life.
Monday, November 23, 2009
Monday: Clean the house. TJ always has his guy friends come Monday nights, so need to make sure the house is clean for them and enough snacks and pop in the house to satisfy their needs.
Tuesday: Bring Micah to speech school and Ephraim normally has either OT, PT or a doctors appointment on this day as well. Tuesday night is my one day a week that I get out of the house and do an out of the house job.
Wednesdays: Work at church in the morning and teach piano lessons at night. I normally go grocery shopping this night as well
Thursday: Pick up TRIP order and Micah has speech school. Sometimes Ephraim has OT or PT.
Fridays: Our day to have fun... we either stay home, go on a play date or go to the play group our county put on.
Saturday: I typically have a craft show (now that Christmas is almost here, won't have one every week, so that should slow things down)
Sunday: We go to church and have a family day. Go to TJ's grandma after church, my parents for lunch and TJ's parents for dinner.
And I was told that since I quit my full time job I would have more free time, but you want to know what... wouldn't trade it for the world. I absolutely love my time with my boys.
Yes, they annoy me just about every day with their hitting, crying, screaming, jumping, running and drawing on my walls.
I get my daily hugs, kisses, drawings (even if they are on my walls), and lego airplanes.
Yes, I don't get as many books read anymore now that Micah doesn't take a nap.
I still get 20 mins of quite time where I start a movie for Micah and sit on my bed and read.
So even though they told me that I would have so much more free time and I don't... I get so much more time with my boys.
Thursday, October 29, 2009
Micah: Mommy... Baby (Ephraim) is 1, Me is 2.
Me: Yup... very good Micah.
However today he didn't stop there like he normally does.
Micah: Daddy is 3
Me: Really... how old is Mommy?
Micah: Mommy is 5
I should have stopped while I was ahead.
Me: Oh, and how old is Nama (Grandma)
Micah: Nama is 5
Me: Oh really and how about Papa (Grandpa). How old is he?
Micah: Papa is 5.
So not only do I feel the same age as Grandma and Grandpa... I must look the same age as well.
Monday, October 19, 2009
Now the good or bad news
In that letter it mentioned that at this time, this person is unable to receive a transplant. Because of this, further testing is on hold. They mention that there could be 3 reasons why this person is unable to receive the transplant.
1. He/She could have gotten better with other treatment(s)
2. He/She could be have chosen to try another form of treatment(s)
3. He/She could have gotten worse and therefore is unable to receive a transplant
So if you could continue keeping this person in your prayers, I would appreciate it.
Thursday, October 15, 2009
Ephraim has had many doctor appointments. We had one yesterday to follow up on a procedure that he had done a few weeks ago. We have some complications from that... so now we have to go back next week to see if they are clearing up. Tomorrow we have an appointment with a developmental doctor to see how far he has come since coming home and to see where we have yet to go. Next week Tuesday he has physical therapy. His therapist is going to be so happy because he started walking last week!!!
Micah has been growing leaps and bounds. In mid August Micah got a parasite (still have no idea how or where he got it from) and lost weight from it. Since he is already small for his age, the doctor wanted to make sure it was related to that and not something else. So in mid September he asked that we come back to get a checkup. Thank-fully he gained all the weight back that he has lost, so the doctor was very happy about that. They also decided to check how tall he is getting since we are at a new doctor. I did send them all of Micah's information from his previous doctor, but they wanted to check for themselves. He was 3 inches taller from his 2 year appointment in May!!! There is just one concern that we have for Micah. He talks up a storm, but most people do not understand what he is saying. A lot of the time, TJ and I cannot even figure it out... so one day at Ephraim's occupational therapy, his therapist mentioned to get Micah assessed for speech. So now we have his assessment on Monday.
Lastly, in all of this busyness of doctor appointment, play dates and just having fun with my boys, I have been busy testing soap and candles to sell. My candles are not ready yet, but my first batch of soap is. I started an Etsy website... so if you are interested, check it out at www.amaraheve.etsy.com.
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
Before he would eat everything in sight. Ate from the time we sat down until we took it away. We had to take it away from him because he would eat everything we made... as long as there was food on the table, he had to eat it. He would even throw fits if somebody was eating and he wasn't. It was very hard and tiring for TJ and I as we were constantly hearing him cry, scream, throw things around, lay on floor, hit... just about everything you could think of a little boy doing during tantrum time, he did.
This week it was almost like something clicked in his brain. He actually STOPS eating, even if there is food on his plate!!! I actually caught him today putting his cookies on top of his head. I tried to snap a picture of it, but he laughed and they fell off. He did not even eat them after they fell off his head... he just crawled away and started playing with his toys.
I still deal with him crying and screaming as I am making the meals, but at least we have the most important part (in my opinion) finally happening.
Friday, September 11, 2009
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Sunday, August 16, 2009
They are doing testing on the blood sample that they took 10 years ago. If everything comes back good on that, they will come and draw a "fresh sample." They say it could take up to 60 days for the testing to be complete on the frozen sample. In the mean time, I just sit and pray.
Please join me and pray during this time for this 22 year old. Also, pray that a match is found for them, either through me or another donor.
Thursday, August 6, 2009
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Most likely we won't know any of the results until later, but I will post as soon as I know something. TJ and I believe it will probably be a week or two before we actually know the results since the doctor and specialists will want to check out the results.
I also called Ephraim's dermatologist today since the spot on the back of his neck is not going away. It does look a little better with the treatment that we have been doing, but it is still there. At our last appointment he mentioned that he may want to do a biopsy of the spot if it is still there after a month of this other treatment. Well, since Ephraim is going to be out for the MRI, TJ and I thought that maybe the dermatologist will want to do a quick biopsy at the same time. I am still waiting for an answer on that.
Keep us in your prayers tomorrow that everything goes smoothly.
Monday, July 27, 2009
This coming weekend is also the day the Ephraim gets baptized. That will be at the 9 am service on Sunday at Fair Haven Ministries for anybody who would like to attend. The address of the church is 2900 Baldwin St in Hudsonville.
Monday, July 20, 2009
He can roll around. How about you? Can you roll around?
He can stand up holding onto somebody.
He can sound like a rooster... Cack A Doodle Doo.
He can sound like a train... Choo choo.
Mr Ephraim can do it. How about you?
He can wave bye bye, he can go SOOOO BIG.
Clap Clap Clap Ephraim is excited. Clap Clap Clap. Ephraim goes YEAH!!!!
He can scoot around and around and around and it is very very hard to to move like that!
Mr Ephraim can get STANDINGso very very slowly with the assistance of a big big sofa. Like the movements of a little boy who is learning so much.
Maybe You can too. I think you ought to try.
Oh the wonderful things Mr Ephraim can do. Why don't you try to do them too?
Sound like a rooster
Sound like a train
Wave Bye Bye
Go SOOOO BIG
Clap clap clap
Lastly Pulling himself to a standing position by the furniture!
And that is that!
Sorry, could not resist trying to write this to Ephraim's and Micah's favorite book "Mr Brown can Moo Can you?" by Dr. Seuss
Saturday, July 11, 2009
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
This morning I dropped Micah off at a good friend of mine and she too him and her boys to Playworld. Sounds like they had a great time.
While the Micah was at Playworld, Ephraim had another doctors appointment. This is to see how he is growing and to figure out what to do about his nasty diapers. Last week Friday the doctor called to see how the new diet was going (he put him on that around time of my last post). I told him that the nasty diaper frequency was down, but not much else has changed. He thought that was really good and said to slowly start introducing soy milk back. That was a disaster in itself as the frequency started to go back up and he started to spit up a lot. (this was after his first glass of soy milk). Today, I asked the doctor if there was any way possible if we could get a allergy and/or an intolerance test. He agreed to the test, but says to get the most accurate results his immune system needs to be better. So we are holding off on the test until September so we can get more vaccinations in him and get healthier since he was just getting over a sinus and an ear infection that he had last month. He mentioned at the appointment about putting him back on formula, but this time on a special formula that is really high in nutrients to help him grow. He was going to talk to his partner and give me a call back.
He then checked out his head. The nurse noted that his head circumference was off the charts. The doctor also noticed that his soft spot was still open. With the nurses notes and the soft spot being open he is concerned about whats going on "in his head." He took some more measurements just to be sure that the nurses notes were accurate because he says kids his age can move around not creating the best measurements. 5 measurements later and still getting the same thing, felt sure that his head was actually that big. Now, TJ and I have not noticed his had getting big, shirts go over his head the same as they did when he got home, so this was news to me. The doctor is going to check with a neurologist and see what he thinks, but we may need to get a CT.
Since we do not have Ephraim on dairy, he cannot have yogurt to help with the bloating of all the pasta that he is supposed to be having. We also have to start him on probiotics. That stuff is cool... just pour a packet in his rice milk or water and he is good to go. It is on the expensive side, so I will be checking out to see if I can find some coupons for it.
While at Walgreen's to pick up the probiotics, the doctor office called to let us know to put him on the rice milk for sure and to give us the appointment time for the nutritionist. He/She will be working with us to make sure Ephraim has a well balanced diet since his diet is so limited.
A little while later, he called back again and said that he was able to sit down with his partner and does want us to put Ephraim onto this expensive high nutrient formula 3 times a day. He said this stuff is about $30 to $40 a can and he has some samples at the office for us to help us out. (what a great guy) He also had some more questions for me. He was asking about Ephraim's legs. After we left it was bugging him that Ephraim could only army crawl and not really use his legs. He asked about his legs and I told him that he LOVES to stand and puts a lot of weight on them. This made the doctor very happy and said he was ripping up the order for some x-rays of his legs.
Keep us in your prayers during this time. I am so glad to know that Christ does not give anything that we cannot handle because I sure couldn't handle this without Him.
Monday, June 22, 2009
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Friday, June 12, 2009
Friday, May 29, 2009
Thank-you for your prayers and if you could please just continue over the next couple of weeks until his pneumonia is completely gone, I would appreciate it.
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Hopefully we are not here very long, but prayers would be appreciated.
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
After church, we packed up the car and headed to my parents place on the lake. He was a little crabby when we got up there, but thought that was because it was his nap time. We laid him down and let him nap. He woke up really crabby and not himself. Was always cuddling with us, and just did not want to do anything. That night at supper time, my mom said that he was just feeling warm. We decided to go home and my parents neighbors gave us some Motrin to help with the fever.
When we got home, we took his temperature and it was 103 under the arm!!! We called the doctor right away, but they assured us that he was just fighting something viral and to call us back if it reaches over 104. We woke up every couple of hours and took his temperature, giving him more Tylenol as needed. All day Monday he just laid on the couch and watched his movies. (I did feel like a bad mom having him in front of the TV all day, but he was sick so I let him)
Monday night his temperature still ranged int he same area 101 with Tylenol and went up to 103 when it wore off. We decided to take him into the urgent care room since it just did not feel right to us and with the persuasion of our parents.
Come to find out he has bronchitis and the starting stages of pneumonia. Poor little guy. This morning my dad came over to watch the boys so I could get his prescription filled and got him some new movies. Hopefully he gets better soon.
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Sunday, May 3, 2009
Friday, May 1, 2009
Micah is doing well with his new role as "big brother." He helps out by giving him some toys to play with and giving them back when he throws them off his excersaucer. He is growing big also. He was 26 lbs at his doctor appointment on Wednesday.
Sunday, April 26, 2009
Saturday, April 25, 2009
I called home and talked to my mom, sounds like there could be some severe storms in Michigan and we are praying that our flight is not cancelled or delayed. We just want to get home.
Looking forward to seeing you all at the airport if you decide to come.
Today was a long day. Ephraim is sick. He has a stomach bug of some sorts where he was getting very bad diarrhea and going through 2 diapers and his clothes each time. TJ and I had to send some clothes to get clean so we had something to wear home tomorrow. We talked to our contact and he told us were the pharmacy is to get some Ethiopian style of pedialight. It smells just like lemonade and he loves the taste. He took 4 small bottles of it so far today and he looks a lot better and the color is coming back to his face.
Now you are probably wondering why he has to wear 2 diapers at a time. His legs are too small for size 3 diapers, so we need to wear size 2 diapers, but he is too long for the length of size 2, so needing size 3. It looks rather funny, but it works better than just 1.
We also had our embassy appointment today and got our final approval. We can take Ephraim out of Ethiopia and into the United States after tomorrow. Our flight leaves tomorrow at 10:15 pm and we start the long journey home. We miss Micah a lot and can’t wait to see him on Saturday.
Thursday, April 23, 2009
We got to bring home Ephraim today. He is such a content little boy. I picked him out right away from all the children playing in the common room today. He was laying on a mattress, drinking a bottle wearing cute giraffe pajamas. The nanny picked him up and I got so excited that I just ran over and grabbed him from her. TJ was preoccupied by a little girl that just crawled up to him and wanted him to pick her up. It was really cute because she did not want to be put down and always came back to him when somebody else took her from him.
The previous days we were up north. We have been without internet or electricity since Sunday. The north was very nice and was a nice break from the beggars on the streets in the city. Even though the country folk were poorer than those living in the city, they were so content with their life style that they did not beg for food or money. They loved getting their picture taken and viewing themselves on the video camera. The sightseeing in the north is amazing. When we get home, we will post pictures, but the internet is still sketchy today that I don’t know how many I will be able to post.
Well, it is bed time over here, so I will hopefully be able to talk to everybody later. Micah, we miss you very much and can’t wait to be home with you again.
Friday, April 17, 2009
This morning’s wakeup call was a goat. It took me a while to realize what was making that weird sound. At breakfast the neighbor had a goat tied around a tree. Later today, I found out that it is a tradition to slaughter your own goat and cook it up on Easter. So, I will most likely lose my wakeup call after Sunday.
This morning, we just lounged around to try and combat the jet leg. In the afternoon, we confirmed our flight home, exchanged some money into Birr and went shopping. I found new outfits for everybody for Ephraim’s baptism. It was fun to barter with the vendors.
That evening we went to a traditional Ethiopia restaurant for dinner. It started out with a hand washing. Then our food came and we ate. This “plate” was for 5 people. You rip off a piece of the injara and use that to scoop up whatever portion you wanted to try. Everybody ate off the same plate. This plate was all meats, but I shared a plate with our contact since he cannot eat food made from animal products until Sunday because of Easter. Our dish was very spicy bean. It reminded me of a bean dip you would have at a party, it was really good. I really enjoy the Ethiopian cuisine, but TJ still begs to differ on the injara. After dinner they played music and had dancing. The show was amazing. Part way through the show, there was a coffee ceremony. I could do without that as the incense gave me a small headache and TJ got a migraine. After the coffee ceremony, our contact ordered us a drink that was made from honey. It was very potent stuff as I only drank 2 small sips and had to stop.
Today was fun and I learned a lot about Ethiopian culture. I hope that I will be able to continue some of the traditions that I learned today.
Customs and immigration went smoothly as well, just a very long line. Finding our luggage was a trick. They did not post what carrousel our baggage was on, so we had to wander around until we found one of ours. Eventually we found all 8 bags. We took all 8 bags and had them verified with security to make sure we had our own and started the journey to find our contact. We rounded the corner to the airport lobby and there were hundreds of people in the lobby. This weekend is Easter in Ethiopia, so a lot of people are coming home to visit family. We finally got everybody to the hotel around midnight.
Since midnight is around dinner time, our contact took us out for pizza. It was fun ordering the pizza because we thought we were ordering pepperoni, cheese and onion but came out with green peppers, cheese and black olives. The flavor was amazing. I absolutely loved it.
We are now in our hotel and about ready to go down for the night. Sounds like we are going shopping tomorrow. Since it is Good Friday (or Holy Friday as they call it) not much is open and it is more of a day to relax, so our contact is picking us up at 2 to bring us to the market.
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Monday, April 13, 2009
Thursday, April 9, 2009
Monday, April 6, 2009
Saturday, April 4, 2009
Now this baffled my husband and I because we were thinking, what could he get stuck on between our bed and his bedroom. My husband sat up and looked at him saying: "well if you let go of the door jam, you won't be stuck anymore"
Micah said "oh" Let go and ran to our bed to give us our morning hugs and kisses.
He definitely gives us our laughs
Friday, April 3, 2009
Friday, March 27, 2009
Now I should never have an excuse of what to make for dinner.
Thursday, March 26, 2009
As I was sitting on the couch watching Micah do some puzzles, I was thinking how lucky I was to have what I have. A loving husband and 2 wonderful sons. The Lord has provided me with so much stuff, I cannot ask for more. I decided to check my e-mail and my quote of the day was there. “There is no one luckier then he who thinks himself so.” - Germen Proverb. Is that not so true. You can always think that you neighbor is lucky because their grass is greener, have more “toys” or wear designer clothes all the time. However, if you’re just happy with what you got, you are the luckiest person around.
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
So now, we are packing and planning the birthday party for Micah.
Friday, March 20, 2009
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
This week has had great weather. Micah and I have been spending a lot of time outside and enjoying the beautiful 65 degree weather and sunshine. Unfortunately today is cooler (in the 40's) and predicting rain. On top of that, we can not go anywhere because a service man is coming to look at why our new washing machine is vibrating so bad. They have precision time predicting on when they will be here and told me anytime between 8 am and 5 pm. (being a little sarcastic there).
I do plan on planting some seeds today in my flower pots. Should be all ready to go outside come May (as long as my brown thumb does not kick in) I'm not the greatest with plants, but I do try really hard. Hey, my Christmas cactus has 6 flowers buds on it right now and my orchid has 2. Must be doing something right.
There are about 14 families getting their son's and daughters from Ethiopia this month. Please pray that they have safe travels.
Friday, March 13, 2009
Micah did a lot better this time. No tears!!! He picked out his marker to write his name with and actually participated in some of the dancing. No pictures today, forgot my camera again. Hopefully next time I will remember my camera.