Archive for June, 2014

Swimming with the Sheep

It cracks me up that the Sheep Family can be so into pools, but my littles are like “meh”.  I mean, they ❤ the IDEA of swimming, but *oh my gosh* – once we actually GET there…  I am sure it has something to do with me, I love the water, when it’s WARM.  Cold pools hurt my joints.  And I’m a girl who wears long sleeve shirts and jeans in a Georgia summer.

Sweet little Swimmer Sister Sheep.

Sweet little Swimmer Sister Sheep.

My girly needs swim lessons!

My girly needs swim lessons!

Brother Sheep playing with Went

Brother Sheep playing with Went

Went and his Favorite BooSheep

Went and his Favorite BooSheep

See, I got in the water!

See, I got in the water!

Brother Sheep

Brother Sheep

<3 this!  Sister Sheep is posing - GO is hiding under a towel trying to get warm!

The funniest part to me was that Went didn’t really want anyone but Aunt BooSheep to hold him in the water. Maybe if he spends more time with her, I’ll have another water baby (goodness knows the older boy caterpillars are!).  We are incredibly blessed to be able to visit the Sheep and play in their pool with them.

~Mummy Butterfly  )i(

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Father’s Day #2

To finish celebrating Father’s Day, Granddaddy and Lala came down to visit us and we all went to see a G-Braves game.  It was *H*O*T*, but not crowded, so we were able to spend plenty of time in the shade.  Went wasn’t having any part of sitting still (I think he knew he would fall asleep if he did!).

Me and My Papa

Me and My Papa

Sister Sheep's pretty facepaint.

Sister Sheep’s pretty facepaint.

Frozen Lemonade!

Frozen Lemonade!

<3 this girly's Baseball Face Paint!

Granddaddy and Brother Sheep

Granddaddy and Brother Sheep

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B10 and CW had a friend there (by sheer chance).  Even sitting in the same section!

B10 and CW had a friend there (by sheer chance). Even sitting in the same section!

Went and his Papa

Went and his Papa

Otto celebrating with his girls!

Otto celebrating with his girls!

Me and My Girly

Me and My Girly

Dancing for the Cameras!

Dancing for the Cameras!

More silly dancing for the cameras!

More silly dancing for the cameras!

The extra-special touch on the end was that even though Uncle Firefighter couldn’t join us, BrotherSheep won TWO tickets to come back to a G-Braves game – so he could take his daddy back, before the end of the season!

We ❤ Baseball!

~Mummy Butterfly  )i(

Dr. Doolittle and His Band of Merry Critters

I found this pretty girl in my backyard a few weeks ago.  She was sunning herself happily – and when the puppies came out she slithered away into our woodpile.  She was about four feet long – and we have woods and a creek behind our house.  I’m perfectly happy to see a lovely, rodent-eating snake in my yard.  No threat to me, and keeps away pests.

NOW – when she decided to hang out in my front yard…that is a different story.  But B10 was home and he worked his magic and made friends.

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Please keep in mind for comparison, that B10 is over six feet at this point...

Please keep in mind for comparison, that B10 is over six feet at this point…

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This is his face after I explain that the snake MUST live outside.

This is his face after I explain that the snake MUST live outside.

I have the coolest caterpillars.

~Mummy Butterfly  )i(

Blackberry Picking

We took all the Caterpillars blackberry picking at a local field, and had a blast.  GO only enjoyed the first 15 minutes, then she wanted to play on the playground.  The big boy Caterpillars rotated picking berries and playing with her.  The big girl Caterpillars helped Went pick berries.  He did an okay job, before they started making their way into his mouth!  (He cracked us up!)

GO on the playground.

GO on the playground.

Searching for the perfect berries.

Searching for the perfect berries.

Four gallons!

Four gallons!

Went, Papa, and CAM

Went, Papa, and CAM

I LOVE being in a place where we can pick our own fruit and save it for later.  I love my fresh blackberries, I love my frozen blackberries, I love my blackberry smoothies!  Someday, I hope to have a whole bunch of blackberry vines, at my house, where I can pick all summer long.

I’m grateful for being able to have a fun activity the entire family enjoys.

~Mummy Butterfly  )i(

Father’s Day 2014

HAPPY FATHER’S DAY to all the Dads out there.

All six Caterpillars were with us today, and we started off at church.  We’ve been visiting around, and this was our third Sunday visiting this particular church.  Otto and I had a wonderful Sunday School lesson, and the sermon was a unique Father’s Day one.  The sermon series has been on Hebrews 11 (the “Hall of Fame” of Faith), and today was about Noah and how regardless of his preaching and godly life – his true circle of influence was his immediate family.  Fathers are to realize that regardless of any other outside influence they might have, their family is where God has called them to serve first and foremost.  It was a good sermon.

For lunch I had a frozen pizza and mac and cheese all ready, something simple so we could lay the littles down for a quick nap.  Otto has been wanting to go geocaching, and I found a couple of really good and special ones I thought we would save for today.

With bottles of water in hand, we set out.  It was a quick drive (5 mins), and then a half-mile walk down this beautiful trail.  It led to a small opening at the Apalachee River.  There was a beautiful sandbar, a section of calm water and a really cool set of small rapids.  The Caterpillars had a blast playing in the water (and we located one cache).

Went got a SWEET ride...  Next time, Otto says we carry him!

Went got a SWEET ride… Next time, Otto says we carry him!

CW running back to hang with the Sisters and Went.

CW running back to hang with the Sisters and Went.

B10 and GO blazing the trail ahead.

B10 and GO blazing the trail ahead.

Finally to the River!

Finally to the River!

Everybody down at the water.

Everybody down at the water.

The Rushing River

The Rushing River

Artistic Shoes in the Dirt Photo  ;)

Artistic Shoes in the Dirt Photo 😉

CW conquers the stream!

CW conquers the stream!

So Beautiful!

So Beautiful!

B10 conquers the rock!

B10 conquers the rock!

Papa and Went in the water.

Papa and Went in the water.

Papa and CAM trying to cross at the rapid part!

Papa and CAM trying to cross at the rapid part!

CAM and Went playing in the water.

CAM and Went playing in the water.

B10 makes it half-way across the waterfall, before the Mean Mum makes him turn back...

B10 makes it half-way across the waterfall, before the Mean Mum makes him turn back…

My favorite part was when Otto took Went up into the brush to look at the small waterfall.  An absolute success!

Papa and Went geocaching.

Papa and Went geocaching.

Afterwards, we drove to the local RaceTrac for Otto to fill up his free cup, and everyone was allowed to choose a candy bar and a soda (or freeze) to drink.  Back home to play with the puppies and pull the brisket out.  At Otto’s request, I made a 36 hour beef brisket for dinner, so that simply needs to be heated up.

We’ll give the littles a bath, then Otto has asked for either a card game or a family movie.  A perfect first Father’s Day!  (Next Sunday, we are going to see the Gwinnett Braves with my Daddy, Minnie Mouse, BooSheep and the Sheep Kids.  That’s our Second Father’s Day!)

~Mummy Butterfly  )i(

Mr. Toad’s Wild (Medical) Ride

It’s been an adventure…and I use that term very loosely.  To tell this story I should begin at the beginning (a very good place to start).

Somewhere during the first week of May, I had one of the scariest medical moments of my life – I couldn’t breathe.  My nose just stopped working and felt swollen shut.  Otto rushed to get me some Breathe Right Strips, while B10 sat beside me and tried to keep me calm.  I was freaking even HIM out.

Around May 8th, spots began to appear only on the left side of my body.  VERY itchy spots.  We soon discovered I had shingles (yes, at my age), and I found out what “painful” means as opposed to “itchy”.  Hint: it’s not fun.

Mother’s Day was rough, but we made it.

Just as the shingles began to heal (I still have some scars, but not many), spots began to appear on my right ankle.  Followed very quickly by a bright red, itchy rash around my entire lower belly and back, down around both my thighs.  It HURT and it ITCHED.  By May 22nd, my husband had enough and asked me to PLEASE see a doctor, who prescribed a very strong steroid for my contact dermatitis (likely, I’m allergic to some new ingredient in the detergent or fabric softener).

So, for 10 days I take the steroid, and towards the end, I start to get a cough.  I didn’t think much of it (see above allergies), but Saturday, I began running a fever.  I made it home and even to church the next Sunday, but promised Otto if I still had a bad cough on Monday he could take me back to Urgent Care.  I kept my promise, and he took me over at 2:30 pm on Monday.  By 3 pm I was having a chest x-ray done.  First words out of the radiologist’s mouth?  “How long have you been a smoker?”

Um, I’m NOT a smoker.  Never have been.  Awkward silence from the radiologist.

So….by 3:30 pm I’m on my way to the ER for a chest scan, with advice to pack a bag, because it’s not “unlikely” they will admit me.  They didn’t, but I’m glad for the advice, because we were there for almost 12 hours (in the ER) and I really was glad I was able to put on my pajama pants and wooly socks once in the ER exam room.  After 12 hours, they determined it was pneumonia, that had not only infected my lungs, but also they were pretty sure had spread around my heart (which showed a dark shadow in all four x-rays they took).  I was given a breathing treatment, a course of antibiotics by IV, and fluids by IV (plus antibiotics and an inhaler for home use).

On top of that, there are nodules that they found on my lungs.  This, combined with lots of other “mysterious” medical issues (endometrosis, fybromalygia, degenerative eye condition, adenomas, nodules in at least two other tissues), mean that I need to have a full workup done and that starts with a pulmonologist and finding a good PCP for me.  Scary, but we have a great team of doctors at Otto’s work, and Otto is going to really start looking for who is the best person for me to go see.  My eyesight has degenerated since the last test, and pressure is up (really close to glaucoma), and instead of waiting a year, I’ll be back in the eye doctor by January/February of 2015.

Because of all this, Otto decided he needed to take Tuesday off to take care of me, pick up my meds from the pharmacy, and help me get around.  While I was napping, he went outside to trim the hedges, and I woke up to him calling me to come down please, quickly.  Now, Esther has made a new habit of digging out under the fence, romping in our creek, and then trudging to the front door with her muddy paws.  Whomever is home has to then pick her up and cart her up the stairs – not easy when she weighs 65-70lbs.  I crawl out of bed, assuming he’s at the bottom of the stairs and needs help getting her into the tub to take a bath.

Instead, I find him standing over the kitchen sink with blood dripping down his arm.  He hedge trimmed his pinky.  NOT a plan.  One 911 call (and 3 REALLY AWFUL Paramedics) later, and he was in the car with my Mum on the way back to the same Urgent Care.  We were lucky, he didn’t cut a tendon or a ligament, nor did he nick the bone (although that took an x-ray to determine).  He saw the same doctor I saw on Monday, who said “Just so you know, I’m off tomorrow, so if your family doesn’t want to come in either, that would be great.”  Gotta love doctors with a sense of humor.

It’s now Saturday, and we’ve managed to make it the rest of the week, without another trip to the Urgent Care. Although, we DID have a scare – and I am lucky we have an ICU nurse as a friend, who made me feel much better when she checked and said I merely had a bad case of phlebitis (irritation of the vein where the IV was).

Overall, it’s been hard.  Medically, this has NOT been fun.  It has been rough, because I’ve not felt 100% for a long time.  In dealing with everything, though, for the last six weeks, I have realized that while I value my health and want it to continue, I have lost something much more precious since May 1st.

Otto and I had been struggling to make sure that we were following God and our family was serving Him in the manner in which we were suppose to.  Somehow, in the midst of all the other things going on, we lost our church and I lost one of the women I thought was a close friend.  I wish I knew exactly how or what I did to ruin the relationship.  All I know is that when you have someone on your iPhone Favorites list, and then five weeks can pass by with nary a phone call or text (or a response to any emails sent), it’s devastating.  I would suffer much greater physical pain, to know what I did to lose something so precious as a friend.

I encourage you, whomever you are, to slow down today and take stock of what really matters.  Your family.  Your friends.  And your health.  Enjoy each moment.

~Mummy Butterfly  )i(