Tuesday, November 25, 2014


The boys had so much fun going on their annual deer-hunting trip with Jason back home to Manitowoc. I got a jump on Christmas shopping and need to finish up on "Cyber Monday". I'm always quickly reminded why shopping online is becoming more and more appealing each year - the stores are just so insane and even if you have an entire day to commit, you still don't get half your list done (the lines, the parking, oy). We have 13 children on our list and some of them get doubled because of December birthdays, so that on top of our regular list and I have a mission :)

The boys have a short week this week and will be home Wed-Sun, so I'm hoping we can keep them entertained and still get a little work done ourselves.
My brother is flying in for Thanksgiving, so we'll spend the day up in Green Bay with my family this year. My grandmother has stopped her chemo treatments, so I'm trying to get up there as much as possible to see her. The boys always bring her a smile too.

Jax has been having a hard time again with vomiting overnight. He's puked all over himself for the past two nights. We don't know why. He's being treated with breathing treatments, but he's not having breathing problems. He doesn't puke at all during the day and is eating. So after two nights of complete bed strips, pj strips and midnight showers, we're going to keep his feeding tube off him tonight. We're all a bit tired, poor Jax! I'm disheartened that this has come back around :(

In cute news, I've been impressed with the boy's imagination this week. They spent the entire night last night building a pretend arcade and being employees and customers with tickets. My favorite part was the sign that read "Jaxon and Brady R K OPEN" I'm told R K means arcade :)

They've been asking for guinea pigs for Christmas. They'd love a cat or dog, but with Jax's asthma, we can't have one. Brady has a guinea pig in his classroom and they just love him. So... Santa is considering a pair of g-pigs. We'd love for the boys to have a pet, and I know they'd be so good with them, so we'll see what the big man orders up...

If you ask our children "what time is it?" anytime after dinner, their response is "CUDDLE TIME!".

Brady helping an elderly volunteer at the soup kitchen last week. He is such an amazing little boy!

The kids showing their cavity-free smiles after the dentist on Monday.

They'd like you to REALLY look in their mouths! (The dentist said Brady has 3 wiggly teeth started!)

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Race to breakfast

Brrrrr, winter is here!

I'm starting to feel my first fall/winter bug this week - hoping it doesn't blow up and remains mild. The boys are loving all the snow that's been falling and ask to go out into it constantly.

I'm totally over my drug-pharmacy-insurance debates. I'm totally defeated. I received a one-month-trial coupon for Dulera - the alternative drug to Advair, and found out the pharmacy can't use the trial offer because it's only for patients 12 and over... because the drug is only FDA approved for kids 12 and over. So no coupons either.
Totally over it.

So, I'm just going to fill the Rx for the $75 co-pay and see if it works. Hopefully it does since our only alternative is $300/mo Advair. I have a good feeling it will be OK, here's to hoping!

I thought this might help our breakfast-struggle for Jax before school in the morning. His 'prize' at the end is typically some change for the piggy bank or a small toy that I pull from his toy box that he's forgot about (like a Lego man, or small item like that).

It works pretty well. Our only problem is that he chokes more often in anticipation to get to the end! He needs to finish what's in his mouth before moving on, he still struggles with that. (Yes, he's wearing a camo-Bucks hat that Jay got him from a Buck's game that Bango signed.)

Jax riding fly on the way to a wedding on Saturday. I see we need to move his headrest up.

The boys visiting Great Grandma and looking at the bird sanctuary.

Uncle Jeff was visiting for the weekend from Arizona. We stopped in on the way to the wedding!

The boys loved playing in the snow on Sunday.

This "help" lasted all of 5 mins before I kicked them out! Now... who wants to come install new tile?

Monday, November 10, 2014

Drug woes

Jax had his annual asthma specialist appointment. The doc was so happy to see him doing well. Especially compared to this time last year. He wants him to remain on all the same medication, but the only problem is that our insurance doesn't cover his daily preventative inhaler (Advair). We've been using samples that the doc gave us, but now his company (Prohealth) doesn't allow the docs to give out samples - uuuuugh. This drug is $300/month out of pocket. I'm going to call our pediatrician tomorrow morning to see if she has samples. I know the asthma doc mentioned sending her a note to ask if she could contact her drug rep about it.
I have a few friends who use this drug (it's a WONDER drug) for their kids, who may be able to get me samples.
I'm going to have Jay call his company HR department (God they must be so annoyed with us) to inquire about our insurance possibly covering this drug for 2015, or if there's anything they can do at all.
Can you tell we want this drug?

If none of those ideas pan out, we have an alternative drug called Dulera that we can get. Hoping like heck it would work for him.

God bless this child's little lungs.

In other great news (read sarcastically) I had my regular 6 month dental checkup and cleaning. WHAT THE HECK.
I have 6 cavities and the dentist asked if I've had a physical lately because she thinks my calcium is very low and causing me to have weak enamel. I said that I did and oddly the only thing off in my blood work was slightly low calcium.
So, now I have a special calcium/fluoride cream from the dentist that I have to use twice a day and start a calcium supplement.
I didn't even get my first cavity until I was 22 years old, so you can imagine my shock about this. They said I had great oral health, but my enamel has gotten so soft. Then they mentioned 'age' and post babies - I got upset and had to get out of there. So... when you turn 35 your teeth belong on the set of the Golden Girls apparently.
The dentist said that if I use my calcium cream and a supplement, that after my fillings, my teeth should be great in 2015.
I'll be sure to mention that in the Christmas card.

Have a great week everyone!

Brady brought this home from school - YEAH!

I spent Saturday with my mom, aunt and grandma. We started cleaning out my grandma's things from my mom's apartment since she's moving to an assisted living facility. She was in great spirits that day and it was really great to have the time with her.

I found my kindergarten photo circa 1984 at my moms for the boys to see. They didn't believe me that I started losing my teeth at 4. Here I just turned 5 and am on my 3rd tooth! (The bottom two are adult teeth already)  Then they asked if I still had that pink sweater. Um no, it doesn't fit anymore dudes...

I brought home a few childhood toys to store at my house and the boys had a blast with them.

Here the boys are waiting for me to sound the whistle. Their homework from school was to practice dressing in 5 winter items in 5 minutes. They get prizes at school if they're able to. I was SHOCKED that they did it in less than 2.5 minutes. When you make it a race, little boys will play along to anything!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Growing weeds

Halloween is over, and I swear the boys have skipped Thanksgiving and gone straight to Christmas already! I blame the stores because they want to walk through all the Christmas trees, lights and decor that are all up. They just LOVE to stare at it all, it's pretty cute.

Trick-or-Treating was a bit tough because we had sudden winter-weather come that day. Jax really struggled and said his legs hurt too much to continue. Then he really lagged behind and ended up saying to a person answering the door, "Trick-or-Treat, may I please have some water??". The man quickly got him a bottle of water - how kind! I realized then that he was going to start an asthma issue. I realized running around in the cold was kicking his butt that night.

In other news, Jax lost his other wiggly tooth this last weekend. He came running in our room on Sunday and told us he lost his tooth. We thought he meant 'tube', as in his tube came off, but he meant TOOTH! He said he woke up and pushed it with his tongue and it popped right out! The boy's have their 6-month dentist checkup in a couple weeks, so it will be interesting to know if there are any other wiggly teeth and if Brady is close behind with his first one soon. Jax got teeth sooner than Brady, so I'm not surprised he's losing the first ones.

Jax seems to be doing pretty good with his food/formula (Pediasmart). I weighed the boys at home and I *think* they've both gained about 2 lbs since their physicals at the end of July. Jax has been doing really well with NOT vomiting. He'll still gag on his food from time-to-time, but the vomiting has really been absent. I'm assuming that's helping his weight-gain!
Jax isn't due for his next GI/Feeding Team followup until January, but I wish he was being seen sooner. His stoma (the hole in his tummy that the feeding tube is in) hasn't been looking good lately. He's had prolapse (stomach lining) sticking out for years that we've been just watching and hoping to surgically clean up when he gets his feeding tube removed... but lately, the prolapse has gotten worse. Hmm.
Getting an appointment with the Feeding/GI team is tough since it requires many schedules to correspond (GI specialist, Feeding Psych, Feeding Therapist, GI Nurse and Dietician). I had an appointment set around Christmas that got moved back, so I bet I won't be able to get a sooner one, but I'll call anyway and mention that I'd be willing to go on the cancellation list since we're in town. I'll get a photo on here of his stoma site in case anyone out there has dealt with it and could give some advice in the meantime. The pediatrician said it's something to definitely have the GI specialist evaluate at the next appointment, but that was back in July and it wasn't quite as bad.

Brady is just growing like a WEED. Jax suddenly has a big wardrobe and shoe collection because Big B no longer fits in anything under a 5 and his feet are 3 sizes larger. Jax wears a shoe size of 10 and Brady a 13 - although Brady is about 3" taller, so that's probably about right. He's ALMOST out of a toddler-shoe size!
I can't keep up with Brady though because he says he's hungry non-stop! But lately he's also saying his stomach hurts. One minute he's hungry, the next his tummy hurts. What the...

The boys wanted a photo with "Scary Jack".

Ninja Turtle and Darth Vader!

Aaand a bunny...

That Brady kept smooching because he thought the whiskers were SO cute.

Jay and the boys scoping out their treasure after trick-or-treating.

Weekend-morning crafting.

Jax and his pumpkin head that he made at the gym.

Jax's special gold dollar coin from the tooth fairy!

Pizza-making with Dad. You can usually tell which kid is more into cooking and baking than the other :)

After work/school on Wednesday, we ran out for some errands and stopped out for dinner. Random mid-week treat! I love how the boys play and read the activity menus by themselves now!

Come on, it's freaking cute!