Saturday, January 26, 2013

It's Been A While...

It has been a while since I have blogged. Nothing real eventful happening which in one sense was nice just to kind of coast after the busy holidays and all the end of the year held for us last year.  But this has since changed. 

The boys all just finished up their first semester at school and exams! 

I still have nothing fun and no adorable photos to post because sickness has hit the Fisher house.  Two of the boys have been hit. It started two weeks ago with Christian, our 15 year old, who came down with a bad cold which ended up settling in his ears and landed on antibiotics for ear infection.  He is doing well now. 

But this week has been horrible.  Sunday my oldest, Jonathon, came to me with a sore throat, took him over to the minute clinic to rule out strep...that was ruled out alright but not in a good way, our son has mono.  This week has already held two doctor's visits and a trip to the ER for iv fluids and stronger pain meds and steroids.  He is pitiful and has a long road ahead, which means momma has a long road ahead too.  Please pray for Jonathon as the Lord brings him to your mind.  It is his senior year and beginning of his last semester and he is worried about getting behind and his grades.

On a positive note Olivia has been cleared from dermatologist this month.  She also had an MRI and visit to neurologist this week and they already 2 months in so a decreased in her ventricles on her brain - praise God!  And he couldn't believe he had just untethered her chord last year when he saw her run.  She is doing great!

Grace also got the all clear from her local ENT.  No more further visits there either.  Yippee!

Basketball season is in full swing with Logan and baseball practices have begun for him and Christian so busy weekends on the court/field with Daddy and the boys.

Guy and I did manage a night out before the sickness hit in the house to celebrate his birthday with dinner and a movie. Always nice to get away just for a few hours alone.

Other than that just like as usual....but with a sick boy at home I need things to stay settled for a bit to nurse my baby back to health. Yes he is 18 but he is still my baby!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

A Look Back at 2012

I will say that 2012 was a year with a few amazing moments and many tough moments as well.   I am blessed but was also required to persevere and hang on to my promises and to the truth that God is good.  When I think of the highlights of 2012 and the things that stand out to me as amazing moments these are two that are clearly at the top of my list:

1.  We travelled to China to meet and bring home our daughter Olivia in February.

2.  I started a women's ministry along with my sister and 6 other amazing women.  We put on our first women's retreats last year and ministered to close to 60 women.

In summary the year held a lot of trials for us as a family.  But I am holding on to the truth that even when God doesn't calm our storm he walks with us through it.  Just a snap shot:

January:  In getting Grace assessed for speech due to the lymphangioma on her tongue we discovered some issues with her hearing.  After visiting the ENT we discovered she had a lot of was build up (more than the Pediatric ENT had ever seen) but got it out and our girl could hear, but it took several months of going regularly for cleanings and our best friend Debrox to get through this.  The good news - no hearing, no further ENT - ears flushing themselves and no tubes needed and no speech needed either!

February: Christian's first year of high school and made the JV baseball team - a highlight for him!  We left for China to get Olivia!

March:  Arrived home and began what would be the year of doctor's visits.  For the first time in my life I have enough medical expenses to actually write off the costs on taxes.  WE hit the pediatrician, the dentist and had her MRI her first month home.   All looked great at her visits so that was great and not even any cavities at dentist after almost 6 years in China.  She also started gymnastics with Grace from her arrival and loved it.  We also had our first home study visit, can you believe China requires a visit at this early after return?  Crazy, I'd say. We put our first women's retreat which was amazing!

April - My sister and I took all our kiddos to the beach for Spring Break. Too cold to swim, but we enjoyed the get away.  Had Logan assessed for ADHD (which he does have, just hard for him to focus in school, with intervention and all his hard work at school and tutoring this boy made huge improvements at school this year - ended his elementary years on a high and had this momma in tears when he got most improved in reading!).  Again not an easy road of assessment and finding out but a praise in the end.  We also got results of Olivia's MRI at her first neurosurgeon appointment.  Our little girl had a tethered cord and would need surgery.  Not the news we had hoped for, but we wanted to get ahead of any symptoms so she could lead a normal, pain and symptom free life so praising God for a doctor that has this philosophy as well.

May - Grace has officially been with us longer than she lived in China!  Wahoo!  Olivia celebrated her first birthday in America - turning 6 years old.  Olivia had her first visit to the urologist - yes another doctor's visit - but praise all was well and no further visits needed!  And the worse of all - my son Jonathon totaled his car and ended up taken by ambulance to the hospital.  This was also a god heart check for momma!  OMG!  The longest ride ever to the hospital in 5 traffic, I was hysterical.  Praise was my son was fine and only had cuts and scratches when the cop and witnesses said he was lucky to be alive.  Flipped his car multiple times, I will spare the details - but God isn't done with him yet.  He also got more for the car then what we paid for it. Talk about God being there in the storm!

June - Olivia's surgery.  5 days in the hospital, 4 flat on her belly. Tough.  But this girl did amazing and recovery was incredible.  She blows my mind!  Jonathon SAT testing continued.  Girls attended Chef camp.  Christian began an intense season of "travel" baseball - this month included Wake Forest and Georgia.  We celebrated Grace's 2nd year home - with her Gotcha Day!

July - this was a big month for Jonathon as we began looking at college campuses - two of them this month Wingate University and Pfeiffer University.  Christian also played ball in Charleston and so we made this a mini-vacation which was fun. Olivia had a great post-op visit on her surgery!

August - Back to the pediatrician for Olivia's 6 year check up and she is continuing to do well.  School started and Olivia began her first year at Hope Academy. She has done amazing and I have fallen in love with this school.  It has been the perfect fit for Olivia.  Jonathon has began his senior year in high school which has me a bit emotional.  He is doing 1/2 his classes at the high school and half at the local community college which has been a great option - getting college credit and exposure to his major at no cost!  We also had our second home study which is due at 6 months. 

September - The girls began ballet which they have loved. Wasn't ready to put Olivia in gymnastics again so soon after surgery. This has been a great option because the girls ask almost daily if they can go to ballet today.    We put on our second women's retreat which went amazing!  And you guessed it we headed back to the doctor again this month. This time it was Logan.  First he went to the dentist to repair his two front teeth he cracked in the swimming pool.  Then the same day he fell and broke his collar bone so we headed the following day to the orthopedic - bye bye to fall baseball.   My aunt also passed away suddenly which was a hard loss.

October - Olivia to dermatologist and praise God treatment worked for her after some follow-ups which means no surgery here.  Jonathon continued with college testing, this month last SAT and the ACT.  All college applications submitted.  The girls went to see Disney on Ice - Grace saw Cars and Olivia Tinkerbell - that was a win!  Grace also had her annual follow-up yes at the DOCTOR.  She goes to Baptist in Wake Forest each year. Another great visit!  Back to Olivia she had another MRI and another visit to the neurologist and we had one more surgery ahead of us for her hydrocephalus.  Oh and guess what we still aren't done, Christian after several months of back pain during baseball we finally discovered had two fractures in his back so he after orthopedic visits, CT scan and getting fitted with a back brace our second son is out of baseball the rest of the fall season.

November - Jonathon quit his job at Great Wolfe Lodge where he worked for a year as a lifeguard.  He was burnt out and needed a break. Momma wasn't too happy about it and the hit it has taken to my pocket book.  First of the year he will be out looking for another.  A couple more visits to the dermatologist for me kids and Olivia's second surgery for her hydrocephalus - once again she did amazing!

December - no way did we go a month without a doctor's visit. This month Olivia went to a pediatric ophthalmologist to have her eyes checked which is important with hydrocephalus.  Great report - no damage or signs of any pressure on optic nerve and vision great.  Jonathon turned 18 years old and got a tattoo! OMG!  My two oldest closed this year with girlfriends, boy does that add a new dynamic to the household.  Let me say these teen years are tough!

The holidays I will say were all magical this year sharing them with a little girl at the age of 6 who had never experienced them the way we celebrate.  The joy in her eyes and the excitement was priceless. This was a tough year, but we are blessed!  I am expecting great things for 2013!  And God willing a lot less medical bills.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Bringing in the New Year

We celebrated New Years Eve at great friends house.  Here are few photos from the evening.  The girls even made it to midnight.
Olivia,  Grace and their cousin Lily

The ladies

My son Christian on the left with his girlfriend Sydney, my oldest son Jonathon with his girlfriend Allie and their friend Teddy and his girlfriend Alyssa

A majority of the kiddos there that night
Happy New Year!