Monday, July 23, 2012

Trach Keepsake

I can hardly believe that 3 years ago today my little boy started breathing without the assistance of a hole in his neck.

 It was a big step that hardly seemed to phase him and today he knows why he has the scar on his neck but doesn't really remember having the trach. He has been very interested in what he did as a baby so we have been talking about how he was born and he was very sick and he stayed in the hospital for a long time and how his trach helped him breathe.

For many parents a trach is something that is feared, a last resort. To me the trach was a life saver because without Milo would not have survived. I welcomed it into our lives.  I pushed the doctors to do it sooner rather than later, they were not used to that reaction.  I'll admit I was a bit apprehensive when it went away. Life has been a little simpler for the last 3 years but I cherish this piece life saving medical technology. I wanted to find a way to "honor" Milo's trach. On the day his trach was removed one of the respiratory therapists at the hospital said I should bronze one of his trachs and honestly I looked into that but at $120 is was a bit cost prohibitive. For a long time I pondered how to creativly and stylishly display a trach.

Here are two trach keepsakes that I came up with. 
The first one is a simpler design with store bought chain and beads. This one is sitting on the bookshelf with our photoalbums for everyone to see.

The other one is a little more elaborate.  I used the trach chain that we tryed to use on Milo but he was too active and his trach kept pulling out.  I got custom made rectangular pendants with the date he got his trach and the date it came out and a round pendant with his name.  I found some beads and charms at Hobby Lobby to finish it off.  I think it turned out beautifully and his hanging in my bedroom.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

June Fun

In June we enjoyed a weekend visit from grandma.  My brother Chad and his girlfriend brought all their kids up to Denver for vacation and we met up with them a couple of times.  We went to the zoo one afternoon and Big Time Trampoline center the next afternoon.   

We had the opportunity to spend a wonderful Saturday afternoon my cousin's house for a little family reunion with my dad's sister Sandy and her family.  Even though all who gathered live in Colorado it has been a long time since we had seen each other.  My cousin Micki and her husband Randy hosted our get-together.  Micki's sister and brother were also able to make it; Penny and her husband Ian and their daughter Francis were there, their other daughter Michelle was not able to make it. Troy and his family, wife Becky and daughters Kaitlyn and Taylor also came.  My parents, both of my brothers & niece and nephews were there too.  Milo and his cousins had a great time playing in their playhouse, swingset, tire swing and trampoline.  We gathered at Micki's house outside of Florrisant, CO in the mountains.  The elevation there is 9100 feet so I made sure to bring an oxygen tank just in case but Milo did very well and didn't need it.  I was glad to see that Milo took it all in stride and was friendly with all his "new" cousins.
(above) Calli, Milo, Brett & Kaitlyn

(below) Cali & Milo at the tire swing; Brett, Calli, Taylor & Kaityln on the trampoline; Dylan, Milo & my aunt Sandy enjoying some time on the deck

Milo, my cousin Micki & Dylan on the rocks outside the playhouse.

That evening my parents and my niece Dylan came to our house.  Grandpa spent the next two days constructing a swing set for Milo and the kids have played on it every day since. 

Grandpa went home after staying 2 days but grandma and Dylan stayed for the rest of the week. 

Sunday afternoon we went to the Cherry Creek Mall to visit Build-A-Bear.  Dylan made a puppy dog and Milo got a Smurf.

On Monday while I helped finish up the swing set Grandma took the kids to the Butterfly Pavilion.
(above) Dylan holds Rosie the tarantula
(below) Butterfly photography by Dylan

Tuesday we went to see a play at the Aurora FoxCharlotte's Web was put on by the Little Foxes Summer Children's Theater.  Milo just couldn't sit still for the whole play but Dylan did enjoy it.

That afternoon we went to Coldstone Creamery in Northfield for an afternoon snack and then walked down the street to play in the water fountain.


Wednesday we went to Pirate's Cove and had a fun day playing in the water.  Of course it also happened to be the only day it rained that week!


On Thursday Chuck E. Cheese was enjoyed for lunch and play time.  My brother Dell and his roommate & her kids joined us.  Everyone else went to see the movie Brave after that but Milo and I came home for a little quiet time since he has a hard time sitting through a whole movie.

Friday we went back to Big Time Trampoline center.  The kids just love this place!

That evening we got crafty and made some tie-dye t-shirts.

Just as June was ending Grandma and Dylan headed back home but we would see them soon in Alamosa!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Busy Summer

It's hard to believe how fast summer break is going this year.  We've been keeping busy, having fun playing with friends and family and doing just a little bit of traveling too.  This post will catch you up through the 2nd of June. 

Just after school got out we went down to Alamosa to visit family.  While there we went to The Great Sand Dunes National Park.  My parents, my brother and his girlfriend, and my niece and nephews went with us.  Luckily it was a beautiful day with no wind (trust me you don't want to be there with the spring winds, talk about getting sand blasted).  The river was running very low this year but the kids had fun playing in it anyway.  We spent the morning playing in the water, had a picnic lunch then a little more sand fun before heading out. 

Next stop was the Sand Dunes Swimming Pool in Hooper, CO with it's crazy warm water for some more fun. The water comes out of the ground HOT. The pool is at an amazing 98-100 degrees and the therapy pool is at 105-107 degrees without being heated.  The best part is that because of the temperature they do not need to use chemicals to keep the pool healthy.
 There is a nice slide and small pool for the kids, picnic areas with BBQ grills, volleyball courts and they even had a little inflatable bounce house.
 They also have a fantastic view the Sangre de Cristo mountain range.

On Memorial Day, my mom and nephew Owen come up to our house for a week of fun in the big city.  It was a fun and busy week!

We went to Chuck E. Cheese, bungee trampoline jumping at the mall 

and a carnival in the mall parking lot.

We went to Tiny Town

and saw...

a tiny firehouse, a tiny theater, a tiny windmill....

and a tiny jail with some rotten criminals :0) ....

who repented their sins at a tiny church...

and got to ride on a tiny train!

We also went to Big Time Trampoline Center and had a blast

 jumping and swinging...

the foam pit was the most fun!

We went to the Denver Zoo to see the new Toyota Elephant Passage
on the first day it was open to the public.

Some of the animals we saw...

the boys played on a poo powered tuk-tuk (it's fuel source is manure and trash)...

We got to meet some new friends including 2 rhinos and 2 new male elephants...

and our old elephant friends Dolly & Mimi

On the last day we played with a giant squishy bag (thanks to Pintrest for the inspiration)

We had a blast with Owen!
June was just as busy.  Check back becuse that post will be coming along soon and will be as lengthy as this one!