check it out, please!....

Just wanted to share a few links that I have come across that I think are worth checking out.

The first is Cora's for Calla. Cora's for Calla is a weekly raffle that is going on to help the Johnson Family. They recently had a little girl named Calla at 26weeks. The raffle is to help the family with the extra expenses they will incur while they have a little one in the hospital and another sweet boy at home. Check out their blog, they have such a beautiful family.

The second is for an 11-year old girl named Taylor who is hoping to collect 365 blankets to give to the babies in need in her community. Check out the rest of details here. It just warms my heart to see young kids showing so much compassion for others, something I hope to instill into my boys. So awesome.

freehand scraps sneaks and crafty time....

I finally figured out that if I was going to get the creative time I wanted then something was going to have to give. This week, that was computer time. I waste way too much time on the computer and at the end of the day, have nothing to show for it. So, this week I limited my time looking at blogs and facebook and and took a few minutes here and there to work on some projects I have been working on.

First up are my projects for Freehand Scraps. The February kit is cute and colorful. I love the combination of red, teal and tan (and even a little pink thrown in the mix!) I especially loved all the patterned papers and had a hard time choosing which one to use, so I had to use a little of each one! Here are a few peeks...

I had so much fun scrapbooking these pages. It is usually hard to get started, but then I have such a good time and wonder why I don't do it more. I am hopefully going to make some more time this month to do a few more pages.

I also finished Heidi's birthday present and she has received it so I am excited to share!

This is the first rag quilt I have done with fabric that is not flannel. I fell in love with this fabric from the Wonderland line by Moda and had to give it a try. The colors and patterns reminded me of Heidi and I knew I was going to make it for her for her birthday. I think I will definitely make another quilt like this again. It was so fun to make.

The other project I have been working on is rag burp cloths. Eric's manager from his old branch in Boise is having a baby boy and he asked if I could make some for him. I made a few sets because they are so easy and nice to have on hand for a shower gift.

It feels so good to have these projects completed. And as a reward, I am spending a little extra time on the computer tonight and then I am off to bed early! :)

cannon at 15 months.....

You are at such a fun age. Your little personality is in full bloom and you are full of spunk and adorableness.

A few things about you at 15 months old:

- You are a champ at pulling up on and walking around furniture. You are starting to stand alone for very brief moments, but are pretty cautious when it comes to anything else. I think all the illness you have been through over the past 2 months has really hindered your progress in this area.

- You have the prettiest skin tone with sparkling blue eyes and reddish brown hair. Everyday your hair seems to look a little more red. I love it.

- You usually go to bed around 7:30pm and get up anywhere from 6 to 7am. You are down to one nap per day.

- Over the past 6 weeks you have been teething, had a double ear infection, had the stomach flu at least twice, had a seizure, went to the ER twice, had croup and RSV/bronchiolitis. It has been a very rough time, but you are feeling much better now and we are happy to have our sweet boy back to normal.

- You are working on eating more foods. You lost your appetite for many weeks due to all the sickness so you were mostly just drinking milk and gatorade. You lost almost 2 pounds. Over the past few days you have tried many different foods and you definitely know what you want. You are not afraid to just spit it right out. Right now you like oatmeal, yogurt, cereal, some fruits and cheese.

- You weigh _____ and are _____tall (will update once we go to doctor)

- You love to play with your toy drums and nesting cups. You love to stack the cups and put them inside of each other. You like to put things into containers and of course you like to play the drop game. It is so fun to see mom or dad pick up your toy 1658 times in a row.

- You are crazy about your mama. You are starting to get a little more comfortable around strangers, but you are always keeping an eye on me. You also get very jealous of Charlie and your dad. If your dad gives me a hug in front of you, you will get upset. It is cute.

- For a while you wouldn't let me feed anything to you on a spoon or fork. Now you will usually take a few bites from me, but then insist on doing it yourself. You aren't too bad at it!

You are fiesty, independent, easily frustrated, lovable, a cuddler when you want to be, over the top adorable and the perfect completion to our family. You have kept us on our toes and changed the rules just when I thought I had this mom thing down. Love you Mr. Moo.

charlie at five years old.....

It is hard to believe you are five years old Charlie Brown. You have grown up so much this past year. You are such a big boy full of love, energy and joy.

A few things about you at five:
- You have such a sweet and sensitive nature. You truly care about others' feelings and well-being.
- You are totally into Legos, Spongebob, Michael Jackson, Nintendo DS and Ghostbusters.
- Some of your favorite foods are peanut butter and honey sandwiches, apples, pineapples, cheese, go-gurts and chocolate milk. Your favorite colors are blue, yellow and pink. (yes, that is right, I said pink)
- A few days before your birthday you said to me "I can tell that I am about to turn five because my voice is starting to change."
- You are so excited to start school. You talk a lot about your school in Idaho and ask when you will get to go here in Utah.
- You go to bed at 9pm and are usually up around 8am. You are still having a little trouble with bedwetting so you wear training pants at night just in case.
- You weigh ___ and are ___ tall. (will fill in once we go to doctor)
- You are still struggling a little with your fine motor skills. We practice writing your letters everyday and you have made significant progress over the past few weeks.
- You are very cautious in most activities. You don't like to climb very high or go on big play structures because you are afraid you might fall.
- You have an incredible memory and attention to detail. You remember every commercial and theme song you have ever seen/heard. You can remember things we did from over 2 years ago and you will just bring up random memories - things we never thought you would remember.
- You LOVE music. You are very discriminatory when it comes to music. You do not like soft, slow songs. You love classical and rock. Right now some of your favorite songs are the Ghostbusters theme song, The Final Countdown by Europe, We Will Rock You by Queen and Smooth Criminal by Michael Jackson (is he really my kid? None of these are even in my top 100! Plus they are all from like 1985)
- You are really starting to show your independence. You insist on getting in and out of the car on your own, opening doors on your own and getting dressed all on your own. You have even started to pick out your own clothes for the day.

I feel so incredibly blessed that I am the one that gets to raise you and have you in my life every single day. You have taught me so much and my heart is overflowing with love for you. Thanks for being you buddy.


looking forward to some creative time....

Between the move, the holidays and all the sickness around here, something just had to give and unfortunately it was my crafting time. As we try to find our "new normal", I am hoping to make some time to craft. I need it. It really does make me happy and I never regret the time I spend doing it. I did take one night last month to make a few projects with the January Freehand Scraps kit. I am so thankful that I get the chance to design with Heidi's kits. Sometimes I wonder if I didn't if I would ever get any scrapbooking done. I wanted to set a goal to make at lease one layout a week, but I already dropped the ball on week one. I am planning on trying to catch up this weekend if the family is cooperative. Check out the rest of the gallery, it is a fun kit!

I wanted to do my normal journaling strips for the journaling on this one, but decided to try the tags instead. I am not crazy about the results, but it was nice to do something different. I tend to get in to certain habits and then forget that there are other techniques.
I love the button flowers from Sassafras. I especially love that the buttons are already threaded. I like the look, but generally don't take the time to do it.
I knew I wanted to use that gorgeous flower from Bella Blvd., but just couldn't get it to work on one of the boys' pages. :) It was perfect for a card though. This card is going to a very special friend. I know she reads my blog, so be surprised when you get it, okay??

Those cute Maya Road sheer robots were fun to use too. I have never seen them at any of the stores around here. And the October Afternoon journaling stickers are just perfect for any page.
I have one other project that is in the works that I can't share yet because it is a (late!) birthday gift. Hoping to get back to that this week and get it in the mail.

better than expected.....

Even though Mr. Cannon is not quite ready to smile for the camera, (who could blame him?) he is doing much better than we expected. What a very much needed answer to prayer. God is so good.

He is sleeping pretty well (which the doctor said probably wouldn't happen) and he is drinking lots of milk and juice. After being constipated since Thursday from the barium he had to drink, he has been pooping like crazy since last night. (only moms can get so excited about poop!) And this morning he ate almost a whole cereal bar. There has been no vomiting since Saturday afternoon and even then, it was a very small amount.

He still has a cough, but it does not seem to be as painful for him as it was before. He is pretty needy and can get crabby very quickly, but that seems par for the course when one is sick. He even has enough energy that he has started his breath holding spells again! Oh good. It really was sad before because he had so little energy, he could hardly cry and he would just give this pathetic little sad face. I can't say I am happy that the breath holding spells are back, but it does show that he is slowly returning to his normal self. Yay for that!

I am so happy to report some good news. Things were pretty depressing around here on the ol' blog. Thanks for your prayers. They are obviously working and we couldn't be more grateful!


er visit #2.....

Cannon's vomiting has mostly just been limited to after he eats solid food now. Because of this he has pretty much been refusing to eat anything besides milk. He was pretty "off" yesterday, not much energy at all and he slept a lot. I put him to bed early and then at about 11:30 we heard this terrible cough. It was odd because he hadn't had a cough at all before then. I went to check on him and his face was bright red and he couldn't stop coughing. He then started to have a hard time breathing. After all that has been through lately, I did not even hesitate to just pack up his bag and head to the ER. Eric stayed home with Charlie. His cough got a little better on the way but he was still very uncomfortable and seemed to be in a lot of pain. We got right in to see a nurse and she said it sounded like croup. We got set up in a room and gave him a nebulizer breathing treatment as we waited for the doctor. An hour later the doctor came in and she was pretty sure it was croup as well because his lungs seemed clear and she could tell that his throat was quite swollen. I didn't know much about croup, but I guess it is an upper repiratory viral infection that has a distinct "barking-seal" cough. She wanted to get a chest x-ray to be sure it was not pneumonia. The chest x-ray did not show pneumonia, but that he had RSV along with the croup. My heart sank when she told me this because they used to talk a lot about RSV in the NICU and how life threatening it is for little babies. He was getting those monthly $1500 shots to help prevent RSV last winter. She told me that it should not be too serious for Cannon since he is bigger now and did not have any major lung problems. She said it will be just like a very,very bad cold that will last for 10-14 DAYS! That combined with the sore, swollen throat and occasional vomiting, sounds like it is going to be a fun couple of weeks. They gave him some steroids to help reduce the swelling in his throat. We are supposed to give him another dose of steroids tonight. He had to stick around for a while to be sure that the steroids kicked in and that he did not get any worse. The doctor was happy with his condition after about a half hour and we were able to go home. We all got back in to bed about 3am and he slept pretty good until 8. The only thing we can give him is tylenol to maybe help with the pain, but otherwise this is just something we are going to have to wait out.

I am tired and frustrated, but mostly I am just sad. Sad that he is not getting better. Sad that he won't eat. Sad to see him so sad. Sad that I feel like something is wrong, but yet we really do not have any answers. Please pray for us. Pray that he will have a quick recovery and that we can have our little dude back.

partying michael jackson style....

So, even though Charlie wanted to have a Mexican Fiesta for his party for months, he changed his mind and insisted on a Michael Jackson themed party. Just in case you were wondering, there are not a lot of MJ themed party decorations readily available. And the few things you do find are definitely not going to be child sized.

As I looked through the party store trying to get creative, I saw this life sized cardboard cutout of MJ himself. I knew that Charlie would freak out about it and it was only 19 dollars so I decided to skip the balloons and get it. Balloons only last a few days and I have a feeling this cutout is going to be sticking around for quite a while.

He LOVED it. He kept asking if I put that Happy Birthday sign on it. I told him no, that MJ knew it was his big day and wanted to send him birthday wishes. Then he said "I am pretty sure that Michael Jackson would not recognize me if I saw him in real life."

Anybody else think he looks a lot like Freddy Krueger with the striped sweater and hat? Eric and I were chuckling about it all day.

In the afternoon Eric took Charlie and his two buds, Brennan and Aidan, to a movie. Charlie picked Alvin and the Chipmunks The Squeakuel. (I really was not bummed that I had to miss that one!). When he went to pick up the boys they busted out the hats and white gloves that we got and got silly for the camera.

Then we headed to McDonald's for dinner, Charlie's choice of course! We enjoyed our delicious gourmet dinner and then did cake and presents (and since they have a Nothing Bundt Cakes store here in Sandy, you know that we were going to get one! Best cakes ever!) I tried to think of a way to decorate the cake to the theme, but everything just seemed too cheesy. Luckily, Charlie was too concerned about eating the frosting than the actual decoration.

He had a great day and he loved all his presents. He got some legos, Spongebob DVDs, the Meatball Madness game, the MJ This Is It DVD* and the Band Hero game for his Nintendo DS. Such a lucky little boy with lots of people that love him!

* The MJ This Is It DVD is not actually out yet, but he has been hinting ever since he saw it in the theater that he just has to have it and that they are offering it as a preorder at He repeatedly told me about the preorder and then he would end it with "all I need is an e-mail address and a credit card number...." Yeah right dude, nice try!
Happy Birthday Charlie! We love you so much and are proud of the big boy that you are!

quick cannon update...

First, let me just say if you have never had to watch your child get an upper GI test, than be sure to thank your lucky stars because it is not good. Not good at all.

Second, Cannon is doing okay. I went in to get him this morning and he had vomited all over himself again. He didn't vomit all afternoon on Tuesday and then nothing on Wednesday so I was surprised to wake up to that smell again. Ugh. The results of his GI test were normal. I chatted with the doctor after she gave me the results and she thinks that we are still dealing with a viral illness that just won't go away. I said that I thought it was odd that he was having such long intervals in between vomiting episodes. She didn't really have an answer for that, but said that she wanted us to wait a few more days and if he isn't feeling better by Monday than she wants us to come in. I am pleased that the vomiting is not as frequent but he still will not eat any solids at all and he is pretty lethargic. He has been very quiet and is just laying around all the time. Definitely not his normal self.

We are happy to hear that they did not find any problems today. Hopefully the doctor is right and he just has a lingering viral illness and will be better by Monday. Would you continue to pray that he will feel better soon and if not, that God will give us some answers and heal Mr. Cannon. I hate to say it, but I am actually missing the fiesty little dude!



I was feeling pretty optimistic that things were on the mend.


Cannon slept pretty good but as I opened his door this morning I was immediately hit with a recognizable stench. Yep, it was vomit and it was in his hair and clothes, it was all over his bedding and crib and even some on the floor. I wanted to turn right around and climb back into bed and cry. I put him in the tub and got everything cleaned up and gave him about an ounce of Gatorade. He instantly threw that up too. I did all the clean-up once again, started a laundry pile out on the patio and got Cannon in outfit number two. I waited another hour or two and tried some Gatorade again. He did not throw up this time, but I could tell that some was coming back up and he was choking on it. Then he would cry because it was burning his throat. I had to call the doctor anyway to schedule his follow-up appointment this week and once I described the events of the last few weeks she said we should come in. After looking everything over she decided that we should have an upper GI test done to check for reflux. He was on reflux medicine on and off for a while but it never seemed to help much. She said it was possible that he may not have been on the correct dosage or that it may be more severe than we thought. If the test comes back that he does have reflux then we are going to get him on medicine right away and then get an appointment with a GI doctor to see if there is anything more serious happening. In the meantime, I am giving him some Gaviscon to help soothe the burning in his throat.

I have not seen so much vomit or done so much laundry in my entire life. Of course, that is not what really matters here. What matters is that I have to watch my little guy go through all of this pain and frustration. He has lost 1.5 pounds over the last six weeks. He now weighs what he did at his one-year appointment back in October. I also think that it is having some effect on his development. He is not necessarily behind, but he has not made much progress over this time either. I don't want something to be wrong with him, but if there is I am praying for some answers to come very soon. We could really use a break around here.

The great news through all of this is that I found out today that Cannon will qualify for Medicaid in Utah and the effective date will be from December 1, 2009. This is in addition to our current medical insurance. So, all the medical bills that he racked up last weekend and all the upcoming procedures will be covered and we will have no out of pocket expenses. That is a huge relief. It is already hard enough going through all of this but knowing that we won't have to figure out how to pay for it all make it much easier to take.

Thanks for all your sweet comments and e-mails. They have meant a lot to me and our family. Your love and support is what gets us through each day!


it is a good thing he is so cute......

I had intended for this post to be a holiday recap, but I guess I should know by now that my life does not ever seem to stick to my plan.

On Saturday I had to call 911 because my baby boy had a seizure right in front of my eyes. I had no idea what to do. I have always hoped that I would never have to call 911, especially because for one of my boys. But there I was, holding Cannon in my arms, his arms still twitching while I explained to the operator what had just happened. Tears were streaming down my face and I was in complete disbelief that this was actually happening.

I had set Cannon on the ground as I went to get him some milk. He knew what I was doing and was not happy that I put him down. He started to cry and went in to his typical breath holding pattern. This part was not new. In fact he does this almost daily. He holds his breath until he starts to turn blue and then he always comes back. Not this time. I picked him up to try to get him to start breathing. His eyes rolled to the back of his head and he began to seize. He had no color to his face, his eyes were half open and he just kept seizing. I had no idea what to do. I kept asking him to breath. I tried to keep talking to him in a calm voice but I was getting panicked. I was right by the patio so I took him outside thinking the cold air may help him snap out of it. Nothing was working. I grabbed my phone and briefly thought about calling Eric who was out getting the oil changed on the car. But what was he going to do? As I dialed the numbers 9-1-1 on the phone my heart was racing and I thought, really? Is this really happening? The operator told me what to do - lay him on his side, don't hold him down, etc. He finally stopped moving and he was calm. He lay in my arms quietly for a few moments and then he just began to scream. I sat on the phone with the operator as we waited for the paramedics to arrive. I just sobbed, wondering if he was okay. Did I do the right thing? Am I imagining this? The fire truck arrived first. Two firemen came in and we took his temperature right away. He did not have a fever. His vital signs were good but he was still quite upset and was still screaming. Then two paramedics arrived. All four men advised that Cannon be taken in the ambulance to Primary Children's Hospital. Just in case he had another seizure they could tend to him immediately. One of the firefighters helped Charlie get his shoes and jacket on. He was not phased by the events at all. He was telling them all about his Christmas presents and that his birthday was coming up and he was going to be five. I grabbed a jacket for Cannon and I and we headed out to the ambulance. Just as we got outside, Eric drove up. He had no idea what had just happened. He ran up to us and we gave him the details. He was going to follow us up to the hospital in his car. I asked if he could take Charlie, but he was already so excited to ride in the ambulance and they were cool with him coming with us. Cannon was still screaming as the paramedic tried to get some more information from me about his history and the event itself. It was about a half hour drive to the hospital. About halfway there Cannon fell asleep. The paramedic said it was common to crash like that since your body exerts an incredible amount of energy during a seizure. Charlie continued to talk about his favorite Nintendo games and Michael Jackson dance moves. The paramedic mentioned what a great kid he was. The second we got to the hospital Cannon woke up and began to scream. He continued to scream for the next 4 hours that we were at the ER. He was not happy about what just happened and definitely did not want to be in the hospital surrounded by strangers poking at him. We waited for what felt like an eternity. Eric and I took turns holding Cannon trying to get him to calm down and drink some Gatorade. (As a side note to all this, Cannon had been sick in the few days prior to this. He had been vomiting and was having trouble staying hydrated.) The doctor finally came in and asked a lot of questions about his history and the events of the day. He was pretty convinced that the seizure was related to his breath holding. He looked completely healthy otherwise and he had no other concerns. Really? All this because Cannon likes to hold his breath until he turns blue? I had heard of kids passing out, but not having a seizure. He basically told us to stay aware of this tendency and just try to avoid situations where he would hold his breath. Easy, right? Like I said before, this is pretty much a daily occurrence. The doctor just chuckled a little and gave us the spiel about every kid having a different temperament and how what works for one won't always work for another. He really was not much help. He did order some blood tests and an EKG just to be sure. He said sometimes seizures can be caused by iron deficiency. Cannon really got ticked when they covered his chests with leads for the EKG. They actually had to leave the room in hopes that he would calm down because they could not do the test with him that upset. He finally calmed down and they finished the test and took some blood. We waited for another 45 minutes to get the results. The doctor came back in to let us know the tests were completely normal and sent us on our way. Cannon actually stayed awake the entire ride home. He was not crying but just looking out the window at all the lights, acting like we had just had a normal day. He had some Gatorade when we got home. It was just about his bedtime and he was out for the night. Eric and I chatted for a little while and then we watched some mindless TV trying to calm down. We were exhausted and went to bed early but unfortunately spent most of the night tossing and turning. Cannon has been doing great since then. He is drinking a lot of milk but is slowly warming up to solid food.

He held his breath again today. He had a little spit-up and it sent him into his normal routine. He started to change color and I stayed calm. I have been praying that I will keep calm. That I will not have flashbacks of his colorless face and his twitching body when he has these breath holding moments. I am so grateful that God helped me through it today and I know he will continue to do so when and if it happens again.

We never want to experience days like this, but if we didn't we would not be able to experience all the good things that happened as well. The friends that dropped what they were doing in an instant to help out. The family and friends that prayed for us all day long and comforted us in our sorrow. The amazing emergency workers that were so kind to my two boys and comforted me when I felt like a complete idiot. The incredible care we received from the nurses at the Children's hospital. At the end of the day, I felt loved. My family was loved. And really, what more could I ask for?

Like I said before, it sure is a good thing he is so cute.