Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

My aunt and uncle put this sign in my parent's yard to welcome him home!!

Ella hanging out in Gramma and Papa's back yard.

Anson opening his Elmo guitar and Ella watching...

Papa... doesn't he look great?

Anson with his train from Gramma and Papa... he loves it!

Anson on his new red bike! He is quite a natural!

So excited to get his bike!

Fun with Pop!

Here are a few pictures from our Christmas this year! We had a great time in FL with all of our family, except my sister Aly who lives in Maine :o( ... Anson and Ella thoroughly enjoyed getting and giving presents! Anson had three wishes for Santa Clause this year... Jelly beans, a red bicycle and Elmo playing the guitar. He must have been a very good boy because he got all three and many more fun toys and clothes! And little Ella was so cute... she hugged her dolls and soft toys when she opened them! So cute and girly!

Other highlights of our trip included:

  • Anson going to the Barber Shop for the first time and getting his hair cut right beside his Papa!

  • Ella and Anson having a cold with a cough...a few hairy nights included :o)

  • Having a photo session with the whole Rollins family... turned out to be a lot of fun! We'll share more pictures soon. Visit the photographer, Pam Saxon's blog to see a sneek preview!

  • Got to be Amy's first over-night guests in her new home! It is beautiful! We had Christmas dinner there!We are glad to be home but it was a really nice Christmas! Have a safe and Happy New year!!!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Heading to FL

We are taking my parents back to Florida today! My Dad has been cleared by his heart surgeon to make the trip home! He is anxious to get back home and into some routine, but not back to work for another 6 weeks. He will not be able to do heavy lifting for a while but has some nice friends in DeLand who are helping out at the shop. Please keep him in your prayers, as slowing down is very hard for him!! Have a Very Merry Christmas and we will post some Christmas pictures soon!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

"Tis the Season

We let Anson stay up to watch Frosty the Snowman. He was so excited! He HAD to have hot chocolate too!
Ella in one of her Christmas dresses... Gramma bought the material and I made the dress.

A cute quick story...

The other night I was reading to Anson before bed and one of the books he chose was the Velveteen Rabbit. When we got to the part about the little rabbit being put in a bag to be thrown out, Anson turned to me with tears in his eyes and said "I'm sad, Mommy". I assured him that the story would have a happy ending but he still cried. He almost made me cry! I did read him the rest of the story but he still thought it was sad. I think he is really starting to relate to other's feelings!

On Friday Papa had his first big outing to the mall with us! He did really well! He pushed Ella in the stroller for stability. He was tired at the end of the day but his stamina is definitely coming back! Then on Saturday he went with us to Target. Today it is freezing cold so we are staying inside.

While we were at the mall, we stopped to see Santa! Anson was so excited to see him! Ella was a little less excited but she didn't cry. She looked at the camera girls (trying desperately to get her to smile) with a look like "I'll sit here but I won't smile!" The picture turned out really cute. But it was so cute to hear Anson... as soon as he sat on Santa's knee he said, "Santa, I've been a good boy! I'd like a red bicycle please!" He cut right to the chase. He knew Santa would ask if he'd been good! We'll see if he makes it to Christmas!! :o) He's been a little "out of sorts" with Gramma and Papa here and has needed some extra disciplining. But he is a good boy.

More excitement!! Ella said her first real word today! She said "hot" and pointed to the heater! She jabbers a lot but this was her first meaningful word! And she now has 2 top teeth and one bottom tooth, all right in front! I was beginning to think she didn't have any teeth! She goes in for her 15 month check-up on Tuesday.

That's all I can think of for now. Have a great week!

Monday, December 8, 2008

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Ella on Thanksgiving
Oh, Christmas Tree (Anson likes that song!)

The Apple Pie I made for Thanksgiving... We have a lot to be Thankful for!

Despite Papa recovering from major heart surgery, we're having a nice Christmas season! It is nice having Gramma and Papa here! Papa is getting stronger every day and can now get up without the aid of his walker. He even came outside today and watched the kids play for a little bit!

Here's what we've done so far this Holiday season... On Thanksgiving morning we decided to decorate our tree. We were planning on buying a real tree the day after Thanksgiving but Anson was so excited about decorating that we took the fake one out of the attic... little did we know that we wouldn't have a chance for shopping the next day! So we were able to enjoy the tree all week when we came home from hospital visits. Anson LOVED decorating it and looked at every ornament and asked where it came from, who bought it... And Ella loves it too. Every time she comes into the room she points at it and smiles. Gramma brought Anson a little "make it yourself" nativity scene and he painted it and put it all together! It turned out really cute! The night of Papa's surgery, the hospital had a big tree lighting ceremony outside and Anson and Ella got their picture taken with Santa, had hot chocolate and other tasty treats, and got some jingle bell bracelets. It was really nice. Then yesterday we put some greenery up outside and hung our wreath on the door. Hopefully this week we'll get the outside lights up. We hope you're having a great season!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

He's Home!

We brought Papa home from the hospital this morning! Mom and I went to see him at 9:30 and we were home by 11:30 am! The doctor came just as we were getting there and wrote up his release. He has a follow-up on Dec. 17th and then will be allowed to go back to Florida. It's pretty amazing that he is back home with us just 5 days after open heart surgery! But the good Lord has been watching over him and he is on the mend. He is getting around very well but taking it slow. Luckily I don't have any stairs for him to climb except for the few to come up onto the back porch. So he is at my house resting for the next couple weeks. Once again, thank you to everyone who has called, written, and e-mailed! We appreciate your prayers!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Taking Baby Steps

"Papa" feeding Ella her breakfast... 20 minutes before we took him to the emergency room!

We just got back from seeing Dad and he looks very good! (Anson and Ella went too and enjoyed seeing Papa... we only stayed a few minutes as to not overwhelm him with their extra "energy". :o) Amy and Andy are still here until tomorrow and my Mom stays with him most of the day. He is still having pain, as expected, in his chest incision but it looks a lot better than I had imagined! He took his first stroll after his lunch today and he was not really looking forward to it. But he said that it felt good to get up and move his legs! The hardest part was standing up from the sitting/laying position. But they tell us you have to start out with baby steps to get the recovery on the way. We also heard from one of the nurses that the diabetes could be a temporary thing... maybe it takes a while for his blood sugar to regulate after heart surgery?? The doctor will explain it to us when we talk to him next, but for now he is not on a diabetic diet. Please keep him in your prayers as he continues to make progress toward a full recovery and a new lease on life! On behalf of my Mom and the rest of my family, we really appreciate all the phone calls and letters and e-mails! I take everything to the hospital and show it to Dad so he knows he's being remembered. But he is anxious to get home! :o)

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

He's Doing Great!

My Dad came out of surgery last night around 7:00 PM and the surgeon said it went just as planned with no complications! They took two arteries from his leg and one from his chest for the triple bypass. (They only had to do a triple and not a quadruple bypass). We were able to see him last night while he was still under and then this morning we were able to talk to him and get him moved to his own room and out of ICU. So he is up and walking, very slowly, but walking! Amazing! He said he feels like he has been "hit by a freight train" and that he is "not as tough as he thought" he was! What a trooper. We just praise the Lord that He brought him through fine and pray that recovery will go as smooth. The nurse told us this morning that there is a good possibility that he is diabetic. He had never been diagnosed but just recently has been having some of the symptoms but blamed them on other things, like being 70. So it is all starting to line up and hopefully we can get it all figured out and he can start feeling like a new man!

All in all things are going great. His spirits are high and all the nurses think he is so sweet! :o) Tomorrow I'll take Anson and Ella in for a minute to see him. Today Anson asked me on the phone if Papa was going to come home and play with him today :o). I told him it would be a few days before playing but that he was going to be visiting us for quite a while! His surgeon told him probably 10-14 days at my house after the hospital stay. Maybe we will bring him back to Florida just before Christmas. We'll just have to wait and see what the rehab is like.

I'll try to post once in the morning and again at night so you can keep up with his progress. His mind is working just fine and he asks about a lot of people so know you're on his mind too! Thanks again for all the prayers! God is good! I will make sure to pass all comments on to him so feel free to leave a comment. If you comment under anonymous just make sure to sign your name. Thanks!

"And God, who knows the heart, bore witness to them, giving them the Holy Spirit, just as He also did to us; and he made no distinction between us and them, cleansing their hearts by faith" Acts 15: 8-9

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Dad Update

Yesterday my Dad had a heart catherization and it showed that he has severe blockages in the three major arteries of his heart... one at an 80% blockage, one at 90% and the main artery was 99% blocked! It is a gift from God that he did not have a major heart attack but only a little tightness in his chest! So last night they transported him 2 miles down the road to Emory University Hospital (one of the best hospitals in the South) and right now at 1:30 PM he is awaiting triple bypass, open heart surgery. We met his surgeon this morning, and he and all his staff have been great at explaining things to us and letting us know what to expect. My Dad and Mom are both in great spirits and know that he is in God's hands! Please keep praying as the surgery could take 4-5 hours. I will post an update when I know his condition, but they expect a very successful outcome and a full recovery! He will be in the hospital an additional 5 days for recovery and then at my house for a couple weeks before heading back to Florida... maybe just in time for Christmas.

In the meantime, friends and fellow cabinet makers back home in their town (DeLand) have banded together and are making sure all his work that he has on his books gets done without him lifting a finger! What a blessing! They are going to make sure he has a full recovery and doesn't worry about work or try to work too soon. And for those who know my father, it's hard to keep him down! :o)

Thanks for your prayers and I'll keep you posted!