Monday, March 31, 2014

Cooper Seth's 1st Birthday Party...


We try and make 1st birthday parties easy easy, inviting less people, spending less money and just celebrating one year of life with a new family addition.  I struggle with birthday parties in general, because what I really want is to celebrate my child, not to feel stressed by entertaining or spending a ton of money.  Anywho, something that stays consistent is we like to do something that our kids really like, regardless of age.  You know bounce party for Track, park party for Graham and what Coop really likes is ... to eat and be outside.  No better place to do both then Chicken Scratch. 
 

 
Of course, the weather had been wonderful here and then we got a "cold snap"... I feel like that's something smart my dad know about and say.  Here I am with sweet Coop Seth.  Check out that pile of Chicken and Waffles next to him. 

 
Some of our guests...
 
Mike pointed out that I would never have pictures of anyone other than my kids if it weren't for him.  That is so true...could I be any more rude.  What will be fun is to look back and see how "young" all the other people looked 10 years from now, not just at us.
 
Mikes mom and my mom... 
 
Granmom and Grandad...
 
Our oldest community kids...friends since birth... good thing kids don't care how cold it is when Popsicles are offered.  These pics make me realize how tall my boys are.  People comment on their height a lot, but to me they are just, you know - them.  They are younger then their respective counterparts in this picture, by a full year.
 
The only d├ęcor I did (gasp).  Mike offered to get the balloons...that giant one cost him $10... now that is highway robbery.  I mean $10 for a balloon is ridiculous...but it is cute...and I will no longer send Mike to pick up balloons, which was probably his big picture plan all along...


 
 Come on...he is the best...
 
Brother Bear One...
 
Whoa....Brother Bear Two... 
 
The Lord is answering my prayers and these guys are becoming best friends... PRAISE. HIM... 

 
Mom and Coop Seth... 
 
Another year, another Hail Merry Tart... 
 
 
Track Hummel...a man that CAN NOT resist blowing out a candle...a skill he mastered at his 1st birthday, leaving his brothers in the dust.


 
We all know Coop was not concerned about the candle blowing... 

 
My obligatory Kels and me pic...she keeps looking younger and cuter and I keep looking older and momier...Perf. 
 
All and all it was a fun and easy birthday.  Cooper Seth is by far my most relaxed baby, so this party suited him well.  He just took in the sights, smiled at people and didn't make a peep (even though it was nap time).  He is a peaceful child, an answer to prayer and my most tangible gift from the Lord to in 2013.
 
Lets Hear it for Cooper Seth Hummel
 

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Tracks Tiny Tib...

The month of March brought our 1st broken fractured bone.  Mike was playing with the boys, business as usual, and sliding down the slide at Central Market with them.  I was hanging with Mr. Cooper - ha, and I heard a scream that I knew was pain.  Tracks tiny Nike got stuck between the slide and Mike's chunky butt thigh (jk jk - about the chunky part).  Their bodies kept going, but his little foot stayed static.  Yes - I had been previously warned about sliding with toddlers - thank you Hobbs and YES I felt like a giant dummy when "it" happened to me.
 
Trackers is the toughest of all of us...we knew it was bad when we couldn't get him to stop crying.  He wouldn't put weight on it AT ALL.  We thought maybe just a bad sprain and after nap time he would have forgotten about it and hobble around.  Nap time came and went and no standing, no crawling, no moving.  This is my child that runs everywhere.  Needless to say, I was heart broken and obsessed with trying to "fix it".  AKA...not trust anyone and wait it out to see if his body would heal itself or if a miracle would rain down on us or if my lame essential oil training would just mend it right on up.
 
He learned to cope and crawl in a few days, but I just knew something wasn't right.  We took him to see Dr. Chartrand who did an x-ray and saw NOTHING....that's right, NOTHING.  I got him home and was set on carrying the man everywhere until he thought he could walk when the phone rang and the doc said he thought he missed a tiny spiral toddlers fracture.  The course of treatment was a long leg cast...what the what?  My toddler needs a cast.  This was just about enough to put me over the edge...I mean what is wrong with me? 
 
I agonized for a few days...AKA...waited to see if that miracle healing was coming.  I debated a 2nd opinion, I asked countless friends, I talked to my midwife, I got an opinion from a large animal vet (thanks Dr. Harper for ALWAYS entertaining me), I researched pediatric orthopedists, I googled, I read, I prayed, I talked Mikes face off about it, and watched Tracks every move and pitied the dog out of his little soul (aka rocked him for hours whilst reading George and The Puppies over and over). 
 
In the end, Mike and I decided to get a cast from Chartrand...knowing he would let me call/ text him if I was concerned at any point and I knew I could get in and out and hold Tiny Trackers the whole time (most important to me).  We also just felt comfortable in his house/ office/ care.  There are many reasons I chose Chartrand to care for my kids...and in the end what I like most is that I know he likes/ loves my family and kids.  He critically thought about my child and his care...he consulted someone else and called to change his diagnosis...now that's impressive.  He answered my asinine questions about "what would you do if it was your son?" for the 900th time.  He let me WAIT until I was ready.  He was likely thinking "for the love of all that is, woman...it is JUST a cast", but you would never know that.
 
Tiny fracture at left of screen.


 
We really used the local "special needs" swing...it was a life saver...
 
We did lots of seated activates for a week, whilst I waited...
 
I gave him his last homemade bubble bath...by the bubble beard you can tell he didn't know his imminent demise was coming...
 
Cast on...not good...
 
Chartrand researched and discovered that three weeks would heal him just as well as a six week treatment. , which was water to my bones at this rate.  The catch was...NO WALKING...so for three weeks there was a lot of counter sitting...
 
Stroller riding...
 
Crib playing...
 
Shorts and dads dress socks (to protect our floors and his tiny toes)...
Big brother being mischievous for the both of them...see Tracks tiny face?...
 
Shortly after Track got his cast one of my closest girlfriends called to say her 3 year old broke his arm.  She took him in, got him casted and ta da in a matter of a few hours had him whipped up - where it took me a week - that is like 167 hours faster than me at decision making.  Can you tell I am jealous?  She trusts the system and to top it off her house is ALWAYS clean.  There are times I think...I wish I was more like Jenn Self.  Then I think...I am supposed to be wishing I was more like Jesus...well Jenn is like Jesus, so its kind of the same thing.
 
Track and Ethan...Cast Buds...
 
Week 3...Learning to walk.  Although, I can hear myself in the picture saying "buddy, no walking on your cast"....I caught him in action here.  This day he was wearing moms Santa Cowboy sock...AWESOME...
 
Now this is Track Hummel in a nutshell...
 
In all, the three weeks passed and he taught me what it looked like to be tenacious.  He only complained at night when he was tired of dragging the cast around or when he couldn't keep up with his friends.  He taught me that when you need help, humbly ask someone that loves you.  He taught me not to worry about what other people think about my crawling two year old.  I don't need to justify.  He took my creativity to a new level...life went on.  We didn't watch TV for three weeks and we didn't not do the things we normally do.  We just went slower and everyone pitched in to help.
 
The healing miracle came...through a kind doc, through a tenacious child, and through a determined mom.  Three weeks went by fast (ish).
 
Here we are going to get the cast cut off...
 
and on that day, his dreams were fulfilled...he could live to ride another day...
 
It's been a week and he still walks with a limp, but it is getting better every day and yes my mind still goes to....what if it doesn't get better?  The cray mama cycle continues...
 
Lets Hear it for Learning, Living and a Tough Toddler