Sunday, September 30, 2012

90th Birthday and Surprise Luau

Numna turned 90 this year we couldn't let it pass by like any other birthday because, well, it isn't just any other birthday!  Not many people get to celebrate their 90th, so when one does, they ought to do it BIG!  We decided on a luau theme because one thing my grandmother has always wanted to do was visit Hawaii.  And if you know my grandma, you know bright colors and flowers are her thing!

We had to postpone the party a week due to her fall (two weeks prior), and when she showed up, she looked great!  We ordered her a real orchid lei all the way from the islands and also had a few polynesian dancers come and put on a show for her.  If she can't go to Hawaii, may as well bring it to her!

Jan showing Numna all the wonderful food.

Numna and Jack looking festive.

Numna loving the attention and looking beautiful!

The family enjoying lunch with the birthday girl.

Hula dancers!
Hula lessons!
The kiddos enjoying the show! 
Numna, the dancers, and the awesome drummer.

The spread!
Tropical cheese ball
Hibiscus cake with pink and purple layers inside!  It was right up her alley!

Coconut macaroons made by Lindsay

September 26th was Numna's actual birthday so we tried our best to make being stuck in a rehab facility not so bad!

Jack and Numna getting ready for lunch.

P. Terry's picnic in the room.

Jack strapped onto her walker and enjoying lunch alongside the bday girl!

Not sure who's entertaining who!

Dinner with the group!

The boys (M, O) and the bday girl - all ready for cake!

When you're 90 you get TWO cakes!

Grands and Great-grands!

The two people behind Numna's well-being, care, doctors appointments, and yes, survival!
Mad props,  MOM AND DAD!!!

Special memories being made!

A new muu muu direct from Maui (one of two we gave her - perfect for her upcoming luau surprise party).

Mason and Owen helping with gifts and Jack in the background walking along the wall!

Erin and Numna!

Lindsay and Numna!

Monday, September 24, 2012

One Year

This little man is just bursting with personality these days!  I can't even stand it how CUTE he is, and I certainly can't believe that this precious, beautiful child belongs to ME!!

At 12 months, Jack:

  • weighs 21 lbs, 8 oz (30%) and is 29 1/2 inches tall (50%).
  • stands for a couple of seconds.
  • has 6 teeth; 2 on bottom and 4 on top.
  • talks!  His vocabulary consists of "ight" (light), "ba" (ball),  "baba" (bottle), "kee" (kitty), "ah ah" (barking when he sees a dog), mama, dada, and maybe "nana" (banana).
  • is completely off breast milk and formula, and still eats everything.
  • has decided that Granddaddy is an acceptable replacement for Mama.  Once he pushed off of me when I picked him up and reached for Granddaddy, and another time he was inconsolable until Granddaddy got ahold of him.
  • knows that light switches go with lights (thanks to Granddaddy).  Every time he sees one he reaches, points, says "ight" and leans in the direction he wants you to walk until you take him close enough to reach it.  Sometimes, just when you think Jack has selected you as the lucky person he wants to be held by, you realize all he wants is access to the light switches.  
  • enthusiastically and repeatedly lets you know he sees a light or a ball (sometimes saying the word 20 times in a row).  He is very sure of himself!
  • thinks most circular things are balls and most switches are light switches, including the dead bolt lock.
  • knows to raise his arms for "soooo big" when asked "how big is the baby?"
  • has been waking up some in the middle of the night for no apparent reason other than an impending developmental milestone (probably walking).
  • tries to sing our family's "da de da de" song and rocks back and forth when we sing it to him.
  • knows that his plain ol' ball is NOT a soccer ball when he's at soccer practice or soccer games for his big brothers.  
  • can climb to the top of the stairs unassisted (if we let him) and knows to turn around and get off of things feet first.  
  • LOVES to flop around on the couch and land backwards into the throw pillows.  
  • has put my cell phone to his ear a couple of different times.  Oh dear.
  • is relentless if he sees a bottle of water, a cup with a straw (that isn't his) or a can of soda. MUST. HAVE. IT. TO. PLAY. WITH!
Remember that personality I mentioned earlier?  Well...

Classic Jack - ankles crossed

And just a close up of this beautiful face:

Months 1-12!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Update on my Grandmother

I know many of you sweet friends and family have been asking how my grandmother is doing since her accident.  Here's an update:

As you know she fell last Saturday and was found 12+ hours later by my parents, covered in blood.  Her head wound was not worth stitches but she does still have a half dollar-sized bruise on her head.  They ran tests to figure out why she fell and determined she has double pneumonia.  She has been on and off oxygen, some days needing to rest between bites of lunch or dinner.  The nurse at the hospital said it takes her an hour to catch her breath after a trip to the restroom.  Luckily she is responding to meds and her breathing seems to be getting better, not perfect, but better.  We'll take it!

She was moved Wednesday to a rehab facility (read: nursing home with rehab in house) in Austin to be closer to my mom.  Of course this place looks like a nursing home and I just don't like seeing her in this setting.  Unfortunately, once rehab is complete, she will likely NOT be returning home.  Ideally we'd move her to assisted living, but it is cost prohibitive.  The doctors have said several times that her recovery is all up to HER.  My grandmother suffers from daily headaches which seem to sideline her a lot of the time.  This, plus her endearing stubbornness could possibly make it difficult for the physical therapists to get her to work.  She said today that she is a fighter (she had a wonderful attitude and fought through a bout with breast cancer in the 80s), so I hope she shows us what we know she's made of!  Unfortunately, her moderate dementia makes it hard for her to remember exactly WHY she needs to work hard.  She can't see the big picture.

She did ask today how long she would be at this place.  We haven't exactly told her much about our plans after rehab.  (Most likely nursing home, even though I don't think she is quite there yet, but living alone is just not an option).  We told her at least a month.  She asked if we moved her out of her house. UGH.  Broke my heart.  We told her no (and we will NOT be doing so without her knowledge), but that it may be something we need to talk about.  Her response: "whatever my family thinks is best for me."

Speaking of dementia, she had quickly declined in the weeks before her fall.  We didn't think she'd know us by Christmas.  My mom would call to remind her to take her medicine at 9 am.  Then she'd call back an hour or so later to find out she still had not taken her meds.  My mom would remind her again and my grandma would say "I'm going right now to take them."  This would go on and on, also being reminded to eat breakfast, then lunch once breakfast came and went.  By 4 pm, her morning meds were still not taken, and she had not eaten anything all day.  All she had done was sleep in her chair because of a headache (and come to find out, pneumonia).  I'm telling you all of this because there is some good news here!  Infections greatly affect the elderly and their memory.  Having pneumonia explains A LOT about the way she had been acting.  As her pneumonia is getting more and more under control, her old self is coming back.  She will never have her mind fully back, but it is at least back to where it was before she started sliding quickly downhill (most likely from when the pneumonia set in).  Today I visited her and we looked at pictures of a bunch of family members.  Ones she couldn't recognize back in July were blurted quickly out of her mouth!!!!  THIS is the Numna we know!  I even asked her what city she was in (certain that she would be so confused being confined to a hospital and now a rehab) and she immediately knew she was now in Austin.  She couldn't remember that a few weeks ago when she was here for a visit.

So we have made some progress.  She is still weaker than she was and short of breath, so she isn't walking much right now.  She is WAY more alert than every other person I saw at the facility today.  She hardly looks like she belongs there.  We ordered her a trip to the in-house salon to get her hair fixed, and a mani/pedi!  She said "OH BOY, I may never want to leave!"  See, good attitude!  Our hope is that she comes out of this stronger than she was BEFORE pneumonia set in, and that we strike oil (literally and figuratively) so we can get her into assisted living once rehab is done.

She is turning 90 on WEDNESDAY, so we have a surprise party planned for her next Saturday.  It'll be a grand time celebrating her!

Thank you all for your kind words, prayers, and daily concern with how she is doing.  It really means a LOT to us!!!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Jack's First Year

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Jack's First Birthday

Holy cow!  Where did the last year go?  It seems like just yesterday that Jack made his surprise debut into our family of four.  It is safe to say our lives are busier, our house is louder, and our hearts are bursting with more love than we know what to do with.  Owen and Mason became big brothers a year ago.  It was this little 6 lb, 6 oz baby that showed them how to love outside of themselves - something parents cannot fully teach.  Owen and Mason were crazy about him when he was born, and are even more crazy about him now - even when he swipes their toys, cries too loud, takes up Mommy's time or Daddy's lap, and on and on.  Seeing my kids respond like this warms me to my core.  Jack just makes life beautiful.

We had a little party for him on his actual birthday, which happen to fall on a Saturday.  I love it when that happens!  The theme was "Little Man," complete with mustaches, bright colors, and an adorable birthday boy!  Seeing as how Jack doesn't really have "friends" yet, we kept the party to mostly family and a few close friends.  It was the perfect amount of everything!

Because Jack was born two days before his shower, he never received any sweet notes from friends and family.
We decided to do a "Wishes for Jack" keepsake for each guest to fill out.

"Wet Your Whiskers" tags, designed by Daddy

Mustache shaped sandwiches for the kids
Big cake with "Happy Birthday" pennant made by Mommy

Adorably tiny smash cake!

Cupcakes with toppers designed by Daddy
Cute pinwheels with mustache centers made by Mommy

Ella enjoying the manwiches, Jack really wanting a manwich
What's a mustache party without a photo booth!?

Pics with the man of the hour!

Aunt Manda and Jack
Granna and Granddaddy
Owen and Mason
Aunt Lindsay and Jack
With Daddy 
Great Grandmother, Numna 
Great-great-aunt, Bee

Big kid sword fight
Little kid block stool

All these boys were in Lego heaven!

Next it was time for "pin the mustache on the mommy" (or daddy).

 Brock pinning mustache #2 as a unibrow!

Brock, Jenni, and Brody 

 Emma sticking it to her mommy, Desoree!

 Well placed, Julian!  

Kate very carefully brushed her mom's hair from her face as to not get it caught in the mustache.

 Ella gave her Mommy, Katie, and nice and tidy mustache.

Brisa got a high and tight from Nicholas...

...and a unibrow from Benjamin!

Mason took his mustache placement very seriously!

Owen thought it was great that I had to wear a mustache! 

Jack trying to pin one on Mommy. 

Nice aim, Jack!  
(Actually, these pictures were taken in reverse.  I had on the mustache and Jack decided he 
needed to remove it.  It was too perfect a sequence swap that I had to do it!) 

Mr. Spencer didn't mind his mustache.  He gave his best serious face for the occasion.

I am fairly certain that Papi had a mustache just like this back in old Mexico!

Jaxson wears his well.  Now he REALLY looks French! 

Emma didn't want her picture taken for future blackmail purposes, but we got it anyway!

Ella, however, didn't mind a bit and makes quite a beautiful man.

The whole gang of monopoly guys.

Jack waiting for his birthday cake...

Playing with a balloon might be more awesome than cake!

Here comes the smash cake!

He spies the lit candle and wants to grab it!

He forgets about the candle and notices bunches of kids singing to him.

Time to smash!  First one finger.  (Mason thinks it is hilarious)

Then a palm...

And a fist-full into the mouth.

Going back for more!

Happy about cake!

He kinda ate a lot of his cake. (which came back to haunt him at 2 am)

Cake and icing...what life is all about!

Onto presents!

A few presents from some very generous friends and family!

Plate from Mommy and Daddy

Little green popper car from Mason.

 Jack getting a lesson from his brothers on how to work it.

A toy remonte control from Owen, who is showing him how to make it talk.

A new book from Kate and Julian.

I didn't get a picture of the actual gift, but here is Jack sitting on top of his new trike
(with parents controlled handle).  He just looks so cute!

 Jack at his birth time, 10:27 pm, September 8, 2012.

Sleepy birthday boy!