Thursday, June 30, 2011

Camera Phone Pics

Below are a few camera phone pictures as we haven't been diligent with the good camera the last few days.  Picture quality isn't the greatest but the phone is easy to grab when funny faces occur.

On Wednesday Abigail had her follow-up Swallow Function Test and I snapped a few pictures of her getting ready for it.  The process is fascinating to me so I thought I would share.  They basically take a video xray of Abigail taking her formula with barium added and watch what happens when she swallows.  The goal is to try to find the correct nipple to use on the bottle and the correct consistency of formula.  They can see if she is aspirating or if the formula is going up into her nasal passages.  At the end they show us the video and let us know what works best.  It sounds fairly complicated but it was a good thing we did it because she aspirated a little with a standard nipple.  We will use a slower flowing nipple to feed her because she has more control and coordination with it.  She is still working at taking the bottle and we put the rest through her g-button.

After the Swallow Function Test we made a trip to the Build-a-Bear shop inside Cook's for a souvenir.  Abby was transported in an ambulance after her birth so we got her a stuffed ambulance with sirens.

Some funny faces after eating.

Abby really, really loves being on the changing pad of her play yard.  It is odd, but that is where she smiles, babbles, and kicks the most.  We will have to get some better shots of it but here are a few.

We practice holding her head up a few times a day like this.

That's all for now we hope you have a good weekend.  Thanks for checking in on Abby.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

The End of Another Busy Week

Well we wrapped up another busy week and it is on to the next. Below are a few pictures of Abigail throughout the week.

The end of the week has been busy but we were able to make the trip up to church as a family for the first time Sunday morning.  Our Sunday School class has been so supportive and it was nice to get to bring her up and show her off a bit.  She did a pretty good job of not making a scene.

Showing off at Sunday School
We have been working with Abigail on strengthening her neck lately and she is getting a little stronger.  With tips from the physical therapist, we put her on a couch cushion on a slight incline, sit on the ground in front of her, and give her some encouragement.  Frequently Cooper doesn't appreciate that the spotlight is not on him and barges in the middle of the action.

Sunday was also my parent's 35th Anniversary. We had dinner with them and our family friends from Nocona, the Waters.  We celebrated the special occasion and visited between Abigail's feedings.   

Joe, Jane, Abigail
Abigail shares a birthday with Barbara and we are happy they finally got to meet.

Barbara, Stephanie, Abby, Norman
This coming week Abigail will go back up to the hospital for a follow-up Swallow Function Test.  The test is done in Radiology so we will head up there and check to see how she is doing eating.  We will find out whether or not we need to make some changes with the way we feed her. So far, that's all she has scheduled for this week but I'm sure it will be busy.  Have a good week.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Needles and Car Rides

(We are running out of decent titles for our posts)

On Monday Abigail had a visit to the lab for a blood draw and an in-home visit from ECI.  The lab visit went well considering they had to stick her twice.  She is such a tough little girl.  We have been there two times and each time an older kid in the next room is screaming bloody murder.  Abby, fortunately, finds her happy place with a pacifier dipped in sugar water and that consoles her fairly well. 

The ECI visit included a physical therapist who will help us come up with some goals for her to work toward.  She needs to make up for the lost time in the NICU.  Right now we are working with her on tummy time.  The PT showed us some ways to help strengthen her neck and we are trying those out.

Abby also made a trip to Dallas to visit Papa Mike in the hospital.  He is recovering well and has moved out of the ICU to a private room.  She has been back and forth across the metroplex often the past few weeks but thankfully she likes car rides and doesn't mind being in the carseat too much.

Looking cool
She made a visit to see Uncle Ryan at his work.
Getting stronger

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Father's Day

I woke up this morning to Abigail greeting me with a smile.  I'm not sure it gets much better than that. 

Today we visited Mike, Stephanie's dad, in the hospital.   He will have quadruple bypass surgery tomorrow morning at 830 in Dallas.  Please keep him in your prayers for a successful surgery and swift recovery.

Tomorrow Abby will head to the lab for blood draws.  Then she will have another in-home evaluation from ECI with a physical therapist and nurse.  We hope for continued improvement in weight and bilirubin levels.

First Father's Day

We are certainly very thankful for our dads.

Friday, June 17, 2011

We've Had Some Company

Abigail has been doing great lately.  She is progressively getting better at taking the bottle and is sleeping well throughout the night.  She is doing well enough to receive visitors and get out and about a little.  Our friends the Berry's, the Downs' and the Templin's stopped by in the last week to meet Abby.  Jon and Leaza, Abigail's Aunt and Uncle, also came in town for a visit.

The Berry's brought their daughter Vaughn over to say hello to Abby.  Their dad's were college roommates and apparently big Mav's fans.
Steven and Vaughn/ Abigail and Jody
Vaughn and Stephanie
Lindi and Abigail
On Monday the 13th Abigail turned 16 weeks old.  We took some pictures of her in the glider to mark the occasion and Cooper made sure to make his presence known.

16 weeks old
16 weeks old
Curious Cooper

16 weeks old

Jon and Leaza are moving to Washington. They stopped in for a while before they settle down in the Northwest.  They are part of a team that is planting a church in Spokane and we wish them well in their new challenge.
Aunt Leaza
Aunt Leaza, Uncle Jon and Abby
Stephanie's coworker and friend Heather and her family also stopped by to meet Abigail for the first time.

Eli, Heather, Abby, Sadie
The Templin family, back from New England, came over and met Abigail as well.  We are so glad they are back in Texas.

Jody, Abby, Audrey, Josh
It is great to finally get to show off this little girl to all of our friends.  We are so thankful she is well enough for company.

On a much more serious note, Stephanie's Dad, Mike Brown, had a heart attack this week.  He is stable and will undergo bypass surgery early next week in the DFW area (Currently he is in Mesquite).  As if we haven't asked for enough prayers from whoever is reading this thing.  Keep him, Stephanie and Brittany, and the rest of the Brown family in your prayers please.  Thanks.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Doctors and Softball!

Abby's busy week is over.  Thursday she had an in home visit with ECI (Early Childhood Intervention) to assess if she needs some assistance for areas like speech therapy and occupational therapy.  Friday she had a follow-up visit to the Cardiologist's office.  Abby had an EKG and a sonogram along with her check-up.  The heart doctor was happy with the results of those tests.  It was great to hear that her heart is healing well! The doctor prayed with us before we left and that was incredibly comforting.  That kind of thing doesn't happen often but it is pretty powerful when it does.

Getting my 12 lead EKG

Worn out after all of the tests

They sent her home on a 24hr heart monitor
Today we took Abigail up to a nearby park where some friends of ours were putting on a softball tournament to raise money for her.  We don't know exactly all of the details or how long it took but Cody Bush, a friend from church, organized a thirteen team tournament and it went really fantastic.  The tournament lasted from nine in the morning until four and it was dang hot out there.  We would like to sincerely thank Cody, several members of our Sunday school class and many people we don't know for their hard work. They helped organize, set up concessions, booked the fields and umpires and sat out in the heat to raise money for an incredible little girl.  We were able to bring Abigail up there for a little while and show her off.  We appreciate all that has been done on her/our behalf. It pretty much blows us away how we have been supported these past few months.

Below are a few shots of mostly our team and helpers but there were many more folks out there who pitched in and played.  Thanks to all of you.

Happy Dad
Proud Mom

Jenna, Jamie, Heather

On Monday, Abigail will be sixteen weeks old, what a crazy ride it has been.  We are so blessed!  Thanks for sharing the journey with us.