Sunday, December 30, 2007

Smiling Again!

Her favorite pastime: watching the ceiling fan go round and round

"I'm so sweet!"

Friday, December 28, 2007

Is It Christmas Yet?

vv A lovely ______ for our lovely Mom
Yes, we're still preparing for Christmas. We'll welcome Mom, Leslie, and Katelyn Grace home tomorrow night, and have our Christmas on New Year's. Slightly different from normal for us, but hey! we get to look forward to Christmas for a whole week more!

One of my favorite Christmas activities is wrapping presents. It's enjoyable, relaxing, festive, mysterious. It's such fun making up bows!

A beautiful ______ for a beautiful Leslie

An adorable ______ for an adorable little baby

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!

A very Merry Christmas from our family to yours!

Downtown at Christmastime

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Christmas in California

Two weeks ago, Mom and Dad and Dr. Thiel (the doctor we're working with in California) decided that Dr. Thiel needed to see Katelyn Grace as soon as possible. One week ago, Mom and Leslie left with the baby for California. They were gone for Mom and Dad's 25th wedding anniversary on the 18th, and will be gone for Christmas as well. Hopefully they will come home around the 28th or so. It will be our first Christmas separated. But we'll just reschedule! :D

Please pray for wisdom for Dr. Thiel. We believe he is a Christian, and he has been absolutely wonderful to work with. His son had both Down syndrome and epilepsy (a type called Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome, which is nearly impossible to control), and is now seizure free through his father's treatments.

Pray for Mom and Leslie. The Lord has been good in providing a good, safe, economical hotel, good rental car deals, and so many other things. Leslie has her kitchen set up in the hotel room, which is not an easy situation (and I speak from experience). They've had their hard days ... like the time there was a late-night Christmas party going on that kept them up half the night; then the keys got locked in the car the next day; and once they were finally on their way home, they missed the exit and ended up having to go miles out of their way. : ) But not all the days have been like that, thankfully.

Oh, and we have some good news! Leslie says that Katelyn Grace has maneuvered herself into a sitting position twice!!! All by herself!

We have really come to realize recently how dangerous these seizures can be. Actually, we're thankful in some ways that she's not crawling or walking. Any seizure would make her fall. And she has them all the time. Hopefully we'll figure them out before she becomes extremely mobile! Also, we're just praying that they're not causing brain damage.

Thank you for your prayers for our sweet little baby!

And Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Our High Here in the South Is 65 Degrees Today

Anchorage, AK - My home come May


Feels Like
Updated: Dec 20 09:53 a.m. Alaska ST

Today Tonight

PM Snow Showers


Wind: NNE 6 mph
Max. Humidity: 64%
UV Index: 0 Low

Sunrise: 10:13 AM AT
Avg. High: 23°F
Record High: 47°F (1969)

Light Snow
Overnight Low


Wind: N 6 mph
Max. Humidity: 74%

Sunset: 3:42 PM AT
Avg. Low: 11°F
Record Low: -34°F (1917)

Anchorage at 10:40 this morning (Alaska time), as seen on one of my webcams

Tait sent me these pictures fairly recently of their backyard:

Oh, isn't it just beautiful?

Monday, December 10, 2007

Please Pray for Katelyn Grace!

[Edit: Please leave comments with a word of encouragement for Mom, and let us know you're praying. Ya'll's comments really do encourage her so much!]

I just have time for a quick update. Katelyn Grace is now over 10 months old, and has grown into quite the chunky baby (I'll post pictures below). We are still desperately praying for answers and guidance.

Katelyn Grace's seizures have gotten worse. She now has "startles" between 10 and 50 times a day. Startles are a very strong jerk caused by her brain spiking. Directly afterwards, she either cries strongly and pitifully, or looks very confused. She is not the happy baby we had just a month ago.

She no longer gets up on her hands and knees and rocks back and forth, and we have only seen her smile very rarely in the past two weeks.

In spite of all Mom has done trying to get rid of the fluid in her ears, Katelyn Grace will probably have to get tubes put in.

She cannot hold onto and focus on toys like she could when she was only a few months old. She does like looking at baby books if we hold them in front of her face, though!

Something bothers her practically all the time. She cries, fusses, writhes, and rubs at her face almost constantly.

She is eating smooth homemade baby food well, thankfully, and seems to enjoy her apples, apricots, prunes, peas, carrots, and pears very much! She is also happy when we take her for long walks in the stroller. She loves being outside, and just thinks Paton (our dog) and Ravel and Suzuki (our two cats) are the most wonderful things in the world (besides her mommy).

At night, she generally wakes up two or three times, often from seizures, and is up for an hour or so each time. During the day, she'll maybe take an hour's nap on a good day. She gets so worked up from the seizures, we believe, that she can't rest.

Poor Mom is suffering from lack of sleep and a feeling of helplessness as she watches Katelyn Grace go through these seizures day after day. She has put thousands of hours into research on Katelyn Grace's medical issues (with tremendous help from Leslie), and has thankfully made some headway. It looks as if we will probably have to make another trip out to San Diego to see a doctor we're working with in the next week or so, maybe over Christmas. Not exactly how any of us had planned to spend our last Christmas all together, but if it helps Katelyn Grace we'll be more than thankful.

Please, please, please pray for Katelyn Grace! Pray for the doctor, Dr. Thiel, as he works with Mom and Dad to help Katelyn Grace. Pray for Mom and Dad as they have to make so many important decisions.

Thanks so much!


"Talking" to Daddy from San Diego in October

Near Arroyo Grande in California, on our way back from a doctor's visit

Playing "hand" - her favorite game - with Daddy

Learning her alphabet with Mommy : )

"Please pray for me!"

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Ever Applied for a Passport?

"If you are traveling to Bangladesh, you must apply for three passports. If your mother's maiden name was Smith, you must drive at least 100 miles to a passport acceptance facility. If you do not have a birth certificate that includes a picture of your umbilical cord, you must bring your first tooth, the book you are currently reading, a distant relative, and the instruction manual for your dishwasher. If your dog has flees, do not apply for a passport. If you have had the chicken pox, you may be required to give a blood sample. If you live in Alaska, bring a cup of snow from your driveway, proof that you have never suffered from frostbite, some reindeer sausage that has been in your refrigerator for at least six months, and your kitchen sink if you have one. If you do not fit into one of the above categories, please call our automated answering service at 1-800-NO1-HERE or talk to your local plumber."

Sunday, December 2, 2007

"The Ring"

See ... Tait wanted to propose in Alaska, but pick a ring out in South Carolina. So, guess what ... he proposed in Alaska, and we got a ring the first time he came to visit, just two weeks ago. Esther has been begging for pictures, so here they are.

I got two proposals! My answer to the second one was even more wholehearted and enthusiastic than my response to the first. (Partly because I wasn't so out of breath this time. I'll tell that story some other time....)

I hope to post plenty of pictures from my "pesky person's" visit soon. Also, I realize that I never posted most of my Alaska pictures. Katelyn Grace pictures are desperately overdue as well. Ahhhhh! Where, oh where, is the time to come from?