Sunday, July 31, 2011

4th of July & Grandma and Grandpa Bodine Visit

For the 4th of July Weekend, we had visitors! Rob was on a Young Men High Adventure campout from Thursday to Saturday of that weekend. On the first day that Grandma and Grandpa were here - Grandma brought a puppet making kit and her and Ellie worked on that for a couple of hours. After Rob got home that afternoon we headed to Manitou Springs for the afternoon. As soon as we made it out there - it started raining! So we ducked into a restaurant for a late lunch/early dinner and to wait out the storm. It finally slowed down enough for us to walk to a few shops and then all of a sudden it started POURING and hailing huge giant pieces of hail. We were not prepared for this but luckily we were next to the penny arcade so we went there until it slowed down (and had fun thanks to lots of quarters on hand!). After it slowed down again we ran to grab frozen custard and headed to the car before the next part of the storm came through!

Sunday after church Rob took Ellie and his parents up to the top of Pikes Peak. I stayed at home with Chloe so she could get a nap in. And I guess Bob didn't do too well with the elevation increase and got sick! Poor Grandpa Bodine!

On Monday morning, Rob had to go to into work so I took the girls and went with Grandma and Grandpa to the 4th of July parade in Monument. Since Monument isn't that big of a city, we weren't prepared for the crowds that were involved. We had to park in a high school a few miles away and take a school bus over to the parade start (after waiting in a 45 minute long line to get on the school bus). Chloe was in rare form that day and threw major tantrums - didn't want to be held, didn't want to hold anyone's hand, didn't want to ride in her stroller (and almost flung herself out on her head), and was just falling apart. Not good in crowds or heat. But we finally made it to the parade and I snuck up with Ellie and sat on the front row on the hot pavement. Later Chloe came and sat with us and was really good. It was an amazing parade but we know for next year to show up REALLY early and bring chairs.

Rob was done with work by the time we finished with the parade so we met him for lunch at Smashburger and then it was time for everyone to head home for naps and cleaning up.

The Air Force Academy was having a 4th of July festival that was free so we went over there wearing clean clothes. It was pretty crowded but fun. Eliza insisted we wait in line for her to go down one of the bouncy slides. Then we walked around and got a picture with Ellie on one of the rodeo horses.

We didn't stick around too long over there and went to eat dinner at Pei Wei. And then it was time to get ready for fireworks! We went to the Focus on the Family and sat on their grass and had amazing views of where the fireworks were going to be launched at the Air Force Academy. Well it was a perfect spot until the sprinklers turned on! Oops. So we quickly moved to a new spot (sprinkler free) and still had amazing views of the fireworks. Chloe added her own soundtrack to the fireworks and we loved the show. And even better - didn't have to fight any crowds to get home!

Such a fun holiday! (P.S. Sorry I didn't edit any of the pictures!)

Monday, July 25, 2011

Vesicoureteral Reflux

Over the last 4 months, my poor Eliza has suffered from one Urinary Tract Infection after another. It seemed like we would clear one up and then she would get another one. After this last one, I decided to find a new pediatrician. I mentioned the repeated UTIs to her and she took a urine sample and found blood in the urine. Not really normal. So she sent us to get a bunch of tests done at the hospital. We finally had the appointment and Ellie and I headed to the Radiology center at 6:00 am.

First up was a ultrasound of her bladder and kidneys. I thought this would be the easy part but Eliza panicked at even getting up on the table. Luckily she calmed down fairly quick and it was over within 20 minutes and she was given stickers to ease the trauma pain.

Next up was a VCUG. We had to wait an hour for this next appointment (THANK GOODNESS for my iPhone or Ellie would have not lasted). The VCUG is where they put a catheter in and fill up the bladder and put dye in the system so they can see how the kidney and bladders are working. And this was NOT a pleasant experience. It took 3 people to hold Ellie down at her legs so they could get the catheter in and then I had to hold her arms. They were so good at trying to calm her down and put on the Little Mermaid for her to watch but she was having none of it. She kept screaming and blubbering and yelling to go home. But eventually they were able to get the pictures they needed and see that there was in fact a problem.

Turns out Ellie is experiencing Vesicoureteral or kidney reflux on the left side. Basically instead of urine going from the kidneys to the bladder and then exiting the body, the urine is going back from the bladder UP to the kidney again. This is not good because it can cause infections in the kidney (and that can cause a whole different set of problems). Next step is to get into a Pediatric Urologist and figure out what we can do. The options I was told are surgery or daily antibiotics. I don't like the idea of surgery for my 4 year old. And I really hate the idea of daily antibiotics when I don't like antibiotics frequently anyway. I'm hoping there is a different option and that we can get this under control. Since she is only at a level 2 of kidney reflux - it could eventually go away (with monitored treatment). I'm grateful that we finally have some answers on the frequent UTIs but a little nervous of what this now means!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

4th of July Craft Project

One afternoon while Chloe was taking a nap, Ellie and I did a little craft project. We made patriotic pinwheels to go on my fireplace mantle. And Ellie helped me decorate a bunch of stuff on my mantle as well but I forgot to snap a picture of it all!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Random Pictures & Cousins Visit

Here are a few random pictures of the girls - no stories behind them! (Although the face painting happened at a night at the zoo with friends!)

And then Rob's brother Warren and his wife Melissa and their kids stopped by for a night on their way to Mt Rushmore and we had a quick visit with them. We took them to the Garden of the Gods for a little hiking/walking around after their long drive from Mesa and then they treated us to pizza at our favorite local place and ice cream. Ellie was in heaven visiting with her cousins that we used to live by! Hopefully next time it is a longer visit. :)

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Eliza's Dance Recital

Eliza spent 8 months in a combined tap/ballet class. The first weekend in June, the Barbara Ellis Dance Studio had their big recital. It was quite the event! She had to be at practice for hours every day that week and then the recital itself was at least 4 hours long. Ellie performed in two numbers - a ballet dance to "Over the Rainbow" and then a tap dance number to "Lollipop". She looked adorable in her costume with a little bit of makeup on! But she got really scared up on the stage (I don't blame her since they performed at the Pikes Peak Center in front of 2,000+ people!). Of course since her class was the youngest - everyone loved them and thought they were so cute even if most of the girls couldn't get the dance numbers right and/or just stood there. And Chloe didn't want to sit still at all through this very long performance! I think Ellie's favorite part was getting flowers from her Dad after her performance was over (and of course being allowed to wear a little makeup!)

(Had to throw this one in of Chloe who wanted in on the picture taking!)

Eliza loved going to dance class but I'm not sure if it's because she just loves wearing a tutu and feeling girly. We are trying out a gymnastics class this summer and we're not sure if she will continue in dance in the fall. I told her she can choose between dance, gymnastics or soccer and so far gymnastics is winning!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Top of Pikes Peak Mountain

Colorado Springs lies at the base of Pikes Peak Mountain (part of the Rocky Mountains) and is over 14,000 feet high and is the most visited mountain in North America. My guess is because you can drive clear to the top of the mountain (or take the Cog Railway).

We had a free Saturday a few weeks ago and decided it was definitely time to visit this National Landmark that is practically in our backyard! So off we went! I'm not the biggest fan of heights so I was holding onto the handle in the car pretty tightly but we survived. It wasn't the most clear day to all the smoke from the wildfires in New Mexico and Arizona that had drifted to our area - but it was still pretty amazing!

Up at the top they have several look out spots and then a whole tourist shop and a place where you can buy donuts that are made up there daily. Basically the highest altitude donut that is made! They are nothing too special but I like donuts so they were a good trip for surviving the drive up the mountain.

We drove back down a little while later (it was really cold up at the top and above the tree line!) and stopped a few times for more picture ops. We were lucky to not get sick on the way up or down with the altitude change. And now we can say that we have been to the top of Pikes Peak mountain.... although next time I want to try out the Cog Railway!