Ella Brooke is BLOOMING...and Carter is too!

Thank you so much for your continued prayers and support! Trust in the Lord...

Friday, January 28, 2011

Another Snow day (Jan. 20th)

We did art projects that are now hanging in our kitchen. Carter loves to paint.

Pappy and Guh Guh came into KC for a funeral, so Pappy posed with Carter before he went outside to play with the neighbor girls.

Shoveling with Kaylee and Laine (the neighbors)

Working hard!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Visit with Dr. Stuppy

Ella's 1 year doctor's appointment went well.
Here are some stats:
18 pounds 2.1 ounce 13th percentile-68 cm/26.75 inches long 2nd percentile- head circumference 44.5 cm 3st percentile. Dr. Stuppy also said her length to weight ratio was great.

She is impressed with how big she is. We can start weaning her off the bottle and into whole milk. One concern is that in the NICU she could only have soy milk, because the other upset her tummy. Her current formula is also soy. So we will take it slow and see how she does. We can also begin table food! Yea!!

She got 4 shots-2 were her scheduled Synagis (3rd dose of 6). The others protect against chicken pox and.___ (I can't remember). She was a screamer for the shots. Poor girl!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


I love unexpected snow days. I love the 5 am phone call telling me no school. I love an extra day with the kids. Yesterday, we went outside to sled. It was Ella's first experience with the snow.
Ella's snowsuit!

We are bundled up for the cold weather.

Carter loved pushing and pulling Ella in the snow.

The sled was the perfect size for Ella.

We need to get a bigger sled for Carter. He loved the snow! He was throwing it at me, running all over, looking for animal tracks and making snow angels.

Ella got chilly after brother "accidentally" threw snow down her back...so she spent the end of the time watching from her exersaucer inside.

I am home again today, enjoying the day! Yea snow!! 

Monday, January 10, 2011

Ella's First Birthday

Ella was a cute cupcake! (The theme was cupcakes)
Carter helped Pappy blow up the balloons.

Our other primary nurse, Alisha came to the party! It was so fun to see her with "Princess Ella" again.

My Papa with my dad and Ella. Nana did not make it, but we sent her sweet treats (i.e. cupcakes and cookies) to eat.

Ella in her tutu. This is the same tutu that she wore in her newborn pictures.

Posing with her hat and tutu in the highchair before the cake!

Ella's cute smash cake!

One of her first tastes...she loved the icing!

And she was a messy eater.
The sweet treats! Chocolate cupcakes made by Aunt Stacy, white cupcakes with a cupcake on top and iced sugar cookies...all were delicious!

We loved celebrating this day with friends and family! Here are 5 of my Tri Delta college friends with their kids (minus Will, who was sick). Carter did not want to look at the camera, he was into Brody...

Ella received an adorable elephant that plays music from her Uncle Kyle.

Ella loves to clap and her Guh Guh.

She loved unwrapping her presents!

Her birthday cake toy!

Ella received great gifts! Clothes, books, hair bows and bands, toys....such fun!

Aunt Stacy made this adorable banner that we will use each year!

We had an amazing and fun day with our family and friends! Thanks to everyone for coming. I did not get a group shot, but our house was full.

Ella also celebrated her birthday on Thursday, Jan. 6th at Debbie's house.
Debbie is wonderful and always spoils the kids!

Ella loves her "little sisters rock" outfit complete with a tutu from Debbie. She also got these adorable socks, that she is unwrapping in this picture.

Debbie got Ella a princess crown to wear!

Debbie and the Birthday Girl! Debbie is very special to us!

Debbie's daughter, Jenni gave Ella a fun rolling ball to chase around! She laughs at it and crawls after it.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Ella is ONE

One Precious Girl....One Year Old

I took a personal day at work to spend Friday, her actual birthday with her and Carter.
A morning video taken during breakfast.
(Click on the PLAY button for the VIDEO on the picture above).
We went up to the NICU to visit. It is a very special place to us.
Kim, one of our Primary Nurses was working! We were so excited to see her and she thought Ella was so big! She was able to spend time with us, chat and play.
Groups of nurses and Dr. Carr and Dr. Heimes came out to see Ella, too. Cindy, one of the therapists that helped up along the way with Ella's eating thought she looked great. She told me that Ella could eat her whole birthday cake, and ice cream, too!
Then we walked over to labor/delivery area and I saw Denise, who was one of my favorite nurses that helped ME along the way when I was sick. I was so happy to see her. She said I looked GREAT! (I would hope so! She saw me when I was in the midst of 11 days in the hospital bed, in pain and no shower). My mom and I really like Denise. She is someone I will always send Christmas cards to each year. :)
Becky was my other nurse and she was not working. Hopefully sometime I will see her.

Carter's idea was to take Ella to the carousel at the mall.

We had Ella's birthday dinner at Panera. My parents drove in from Newton after work to join us!

Ella on the carousel. Carter chose a white horse for her to ride.

Carter rode a dragon horse right in front of Ella.

And we could not leave without Pappy taking Carter to Topsy's for popcorn and an icee.

Ella ended the night laughing as daddy tickled her belly.
(Click on the PLAY button for the VIDEO on the picture above).

We are so proud of Ella. She has BLOOMED so much over the year. We love you, Ella Bella!!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Ella updates

Ella is doing G-R-E-A-T!!

She was a candidate for the Synagis shot. It is a shot that you have to qualify for...and due to Ella's low birth weight we were accepted. She will receive one shot each month during RSV season (November -March). This shot does not keep her from getting RSV, it will just lesson the affects she would have IF she were to get RSV. IF she got RSV, we would most likely be able to treat her at home, rather than her needing to be hospitalized... Each time she gets the shot we have to been seen by the doctor before she receives the shot. Dr. Stuppy checks her out, and then we get the shot. So far, she has received the November and December shots. Due to her current weight, they have to split the shot into two, so she gets two shots each time, one in each leg. Poor Girl!

Miss Ella has her 1 Year appointment with Dr. Stuppy and her next RSV shot at her appointment on Jan. 13th.

We visited her Cardiologist on Dec. 1st. Dr. Ardinger is out of Children's Mercy and we really like him. She had a EKG performed, which showed the hole in her heart (that she was born with) is decreasing in size. At birth, it was 5-6mm, and it is now about 3mm. He was in hopes that it would be about 1mm. Ella has no medication for it and no restrictions. He said that it should continue closing...if not, nothing would be done until she was 6 years old, or so. I am not too, worried....I am praying it will be taken care of on its own. We will not go back to see him for a year. (Hearing that we do not need to been seen for year makes me feel good about it, too).

Dr. Stuppy ordered a blood draw to be done, since Ella has not had her blood checked since she was in the hospital. Yesterday (to get it on this years' insurance!) I took her to Children's Mercy to get her blood drawn. It was awful!! The nurse, who was very nice, had me hold Ella in a "bear hug" position and then she stuck her int he arm....like a big girl. However, it did not work and Ella was fighting it....so she took it out. POOR ELLA was screaming and crying....The nurse called for another nurse to come help her. I laid down with Ella and held her right arm and the other nurse held her left arm while the original nurse took the blood. It was so hard to watch. I know I hate having my blood drawn...so I hated seeing Ella in pain. We will get these results early next week. The nurse commented that "Ella was a fighter" and I said, "Yes, ever since the days she was born!" :)

We had our first "false alarm" at the after hours clinic this week. She was running a fever, pulling on her ears and had not been eating well. So I took her in thinking she had an ear infection, but we left with good news that she was fine and probably had a cold.

Ella is BLOOMING just as she should!! At 11 months, she is crawling everywhere and into everything--especially her big brother's toys. She was singing, " All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth..." but still has no teeth. Ellie babbles a lot and says, da da, ma ma, hi (sometimes) and Ella (sometimes). She loves her baby food and Puff snacks. Carter and Ella are just starting to interact more and play together, so it is fun to watch.