Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Take 2

Thought you would never get through that looooong post about Ryan's health?

This is a much shorter post about his leg.

He's having back surgery tomorrow to fix the bulging disc that is pinching a nerve.

After a doctors appointment this morning, he (the dr) decided to admit Ryan so they could do some blood work and manage his pain before the procedure.

Here's hoping for an efficient surgery and short pain-free recovery!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Flashback #3c

Sorting through some of last years pictures has made me *tear* up now and again.
Like these little gems:

He used to "help" me wash the dishes, and then slip into the water while I was wiping the counters. He then would proceed to wash himself with the scrubby.

cute little bugger.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Flashback Friday #3b

Since Ryan was feeling a little puny last spring, a few of our favorite people came and helped him get his spring work done.
With three men over 50, we'll be telling the funny stories for years to come!

While the men were farming outside, Jackson was farming in the house!

We also celebrated Papa's 59th birthday!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Flashback Friday #3

Or: A very lengthy post about my husband. And his liver.

Last March I was helping Ryan and our fabulous new employee- Zach move these calves from the little "hutchers" to a larger group pen. Catching our breath after that intense work-out, I noticed that Ryan's color was a little off. Upon closer inspection, (peeling down his eyelids) it was confirmed.  He was yellow. Having seen very few grown men with jaundice, I told him that he needed to see the Doctor. Oddly, he agreed.

Fortunately, our Doctors office has after-hours- hours on Mondays. You know, because, Ryan had work to do. Unfortunately, Our Doctor was on a work vacation. We both were disappointed, because we love, love, love our Doctor, but I didn't think he should wait until the following week when she would be back.

Dr. Park was concerned with Ryan's symptoms, (fatigue, upset stomach, obvious elevated bilirubin) and wanted him to have some blood work done.

The results of the blood work on Tuesday prompted the Doctor to order an ultrasound of Ryan's liver, kidneys & gall bladder. Something was causing his liver to not function properly.

Ultrasound on Thursday, more blood work, and back to the Doctor on Friday.

The results of the ultrasound found no issues with his kidneys or gall bladder. Both seemed to be working fine. But, his liver was enlarged. His labs were negative for Hepatitis A, B and C. but his AST and ALT levels were 1200 and 1300. Normal range for AST is 5-40, and ALT is 7-60.

Since Ryan is not an IV drug user, alcoholic, or sexually promiscuous, The Doctor was a little stumped. When the blood work came back with such increased levels, Dr. Park had his nurse schedule an appointment for Ryan with a specialist. For the next Monday.

Dr. Park told Ryan not to miss the appointment with the specialist- it usually takes 2-3 months to get an appointment, not the next business day.

Upon visiting the GI specialist and answering lots more questions, scheduling more appointments and more blood work drawn, Dr. Jain thought Ryan may have Autoimmune Hepatitis. Ryan would need to have a liver biopsy first to confirm the diagnosis.

After hours of waiting- (we were early- go figure.) the procedure was finished and we were in the recovery room for a while. Orange Popsicles eased that waiting.

The results of the biopsy showed some cirrhosis, and the Autoimmune diagnosis was confirmed. Ryan was put on two different medications. Prednisone to quickly get the liver numbers under control, and a "maintenance" drug to maintain the liver function.

Within 4 months, he was off of his Prednisone, and just taking the maintenance medication. Liver labs were withing normal ranges and Ryan felt significantly better.

Flash forward: It took some time for Ryan to feel back to his "normal" self. He still tires easily (maybe because he's 40!) and a few weeks ago he was having some pain in his liver region. We've also noticed that he does not digest some things very well, and if he eats those things (pizza) he'll likely experience some pain.

This disease does not resolve itself, and we expect to deal with it for the rest of his life. We are very blessed that he is feeling better, and that there is medication he can take with very few side effects to keep the disease in check.

For those of you who knew all about this, we appreciate your kind concern and thoughtful prayers!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Homework Box

I don't know about your house, but homework time at our house is CRAZY.
ugh. I hate it.
In a  perfect world, everyone would come home from school, put their things away neatly, get themselves a healthy snack and quietly quickly do their homework.
In my perfect world.
Since remembering to pick up my kids from the right spot at the right time is as close as I get to a perfect world, I came up with this fabulous idea to help me with homework time.
Enter:  "The Homework Box"

It's bright orange, and labeled.
(easy to find)

It is stocked with everything a 1st grader needs.
(no more whining about not finding what she needs)

Glue stick
A 24 box of crayola crayons
Sharpened pencils
Pink erasers
Keeping everything in the box works for me!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

7th Grade Basketball

Elizabeth decided she wanted to try something new this winter... basketball.
The joy on her father's face and delight in his voice is unmistakable.

She is doing a really great job for someone that has never played before-

As most of her team.

It is a great group of girls, some from her soccer team.

She'd die if she knew I took these pictures.

She' kill me if she knew I posted them on the internet.

Don't tell her, k?

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Beautiful Saturday & Logan's Birthday!

Saturday here in Indiana was a gorgeous day.

Simply beautiful for January!

So beautiful, Jackson and William decided to farm outside.

So gorgeous, Jackson and Isabelle decided to make some mud, and play in it.

So lovely, Jackson decided to take his shirt off.

So wonderful, Jackson decided to take his pants off and wash the hot wheel.

So nice, we took down the outside Christmas lights!

Saturday night we celebrated Logan's seventeenth! birthday with his mom, brother and best buddy from Ohio.

He requested: Straw hats, green bean casserole? and ice cream cake.

He's totally counting down the days until his next birthday!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Flashback Friday #2

Looking back through my pictures, I wondered... 

Is that really all we did? I think the pork stuffed pastries are cute, but wow.

And then, I started looking through March, and realized in February my camera lense broke. ugh.

March did prove to be a little busier~

Jackson played in this cat carrier almost non-stop:

We saw Foreigner in concert again. (With friends this time!)

I painted a dresser I had picked up at a second hand store.

Navy blue of course. So navy, that in some light it would look black.
I had a hard time getting the blue as dark as I wanted, but after my friend Holly put black, black and more black in it, it came out perfect.

I have it in the dining room with all of my table linens in it.

I love the way it looks, especially with the upgraded brushed nickle knobs!

And yes, those photos were taken with the wrong type of lense. argh.

The kids helped Ryan clean a couple loads of corn.

William really didn't mind the dirty job-

Elizabeth, on the other hand.. not so much.

The kids pushed the corn to the back of the truck and through the door.

Ryan helped feed the corn in to the cleaning drum,

up the elevator and into the bin.

Very tiring, very dirty work, but worth it!

Dad and I took my nephew Wesley to the cemetery to see  Great Grandpa & Grandma's headstone.
(I have more photos in cemeteries than the normal person should. Confession time.)

This cute little girl was born. There is nothing better than a new baby. Nothing.

Ryan and I worked at clearing out a fence row. At the end of the day we had a huge fire to burn up the brush.

I started framing my favorite pieces of the kids art and created a gallery wall in the basement stairwell. I've added to it since, and have more things to frame. I love the way it is shaping up!

Isabelle was writing on EVERYTHING. Even the windows.

Jackson fell asleep.

He fell asleep dirty...

He fell asleep reading...

And snuggled up with his sister.

And that, was our February and March 2012.