Saturday, May 17, 2014

The Passing Of Grandpa Cooper

On May 17th, we lost one of the most kind, caring, loving, and Christ-like men ever to walk the Earth.  Grandpa found out a month previous that he had 7 aneurisms in his body.  One behind each knee, one by his groin, and multiple ones in his stomach.  Grandma had taken him into the doctor because he had a cold. They ended up doing a CAT scan and found out he had the aneurisms.  The doctor didn't feel like Grandpa would have made it through surgery, so he pretty much had to wait till one of them burst.  Grandpa was told that the aneursims would burst while he was asleep and that he would bleed out in 10 minutes. Grandpa spent his last month of life worried about the aneurisms.  He had a lot of anxiety over it and it made him physically sick and he couldn't sleep at night. 
It just so happened that Bryce decided to hunt for turkeys in April and May, so we went up to visit them often while he hunted at the ranch.  It gave me a great opportunity to see Grandma and Grandpa more over that time period.  In fact, I went up on Wednesday before grandpa passed away and helped them plant their garden.  Grandpa leaned on the fence and told me where he wanted his tomato plants.  He kept telling me what a good job I was doing.  Before I left that night, he grabbed my hand, kissed my cheek, told me that I had a good family and then he thanked me for coming up and spending the evening with them!

On Saturday, May 17, I received a call from Steph telling me that while Grandpa was at his great-granddaughters softball game, something burst in his leg and was causing him excruciating pain.  He was white and started throwing up, so they took him to the hospital.  The first doctor didn't think it was the aneurisms, but after a CAT scan and another look from Grandpa's doctor, they realized that all the aneurisms had burst.  They gave Grandpa the option of flying to SLC for emergency surgery, but he turned that down because he knew he wouldn't make it.
I received a phone call from Steph telling me to head straight to the hospital at 2:58 p.m. Grandpa did not have much time.  It so happened that Jacqui had just come to my house and so she was able to take the kids while I immediately drove to Logan.  Bryce was dirty and gross and in the middle of fixing someones car, so he could not come with me or help with the kids.  I drove faster than I ever had before and I made it to the hospital at 4:00.  I ran across the parking lot and into the emergency room.  Before my eyes, laid my grandpa who I could barely recognize.  He had aged 20 years in just two hours.  I fell to the floor and just sobbed in my hands.  After I composed myself, I was able stand by his side, rub his shoulder, and tell him how much I loved him and how thankful I was for him. I also asked him to keep an eye on all of his family.  He was unresponsive but I know he heard me.

Grandpa was surrounded by almost 30 members of his posterity as he fought those last few minutes.  It was hard, yet priceless to stand in that room and mourn the loss of such a great man. The love and the Spirit was so strong.  Grandma kept grabbing his head and telling him she loved him. The doctor told us that his heart rate would just continue to drop.  He kept checking on Grandma.  He couldn't believe the love and support that was there in the room for Grandpa.  He said it doesn't happen very often. Paul was able to face time my parents, so Mom was able to talk to grandpa when he was still coherent.  She remained on face time for the last hour of his life.  Mom and Dad were there with us the whole time.
Jocelynn, Ingrid and I were at the foot of his bed, when Grandma got up to go to the bathroom. As soon as she let go of his hand, he passed away.  We were told that that is very common. After Grandpa passed on to the other side, we all came in the room and Grandma received a priesthood blessing.  I was so glad she was surrounded by her kids, grand kids, and great grand kids during this difficult time.  They moved Grandpa to the back of the emergency department and we all followed him back there.  As soon as Grandma sat down, she said, "Let's go to my house.  There is no reason to stay here anymore." It was a neat experience to be there with family as our Grandpa passed on to a better place. 
We all went up to Grandma's and spent the rest of the evening there.  It was weird to not have our Grandpa there sitting in his chair, breathing in his oxygen, and helping the grand kids twist their taffy or offering them a mixed Dr. Pepper.  He will dearly be missed...his loving smile and kind words, his pat on my hand as he called me a peach, his unwavering testimony of Christ, and his perfect example!
 I was so blessed to have him as my grandpa and he has definitely influenced me and how I live my life. His legacy will live on through his grand children, great grand children, and great great grand children. I hope that as his posterity continues to grow, that each generation will follow the example of this great man! 

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Parker 12 Weeks Old

She has been a healthy baby thus far. At about 5 weeks old, she started getting fussy and irritable and so we figured out that she was having acid reflux. It took us a while to decide if that was the problem.  She would act like she was hungry all the time and that was because the milk soothed her acid.  Anyway, we finally put her on a prescription and she is so much better.
I have really enjoyed her different stages through the past 12 weeks.  She struggled with nights, like all babies, but she finally figured it out around six weeks.  Before that, she would wake up for her night feedings and stay up for at least an hour or more  before settling back down. She is almost 3 months old and she is doing great at nights.  For about the past 4 days, she is going 8 eight hours before her next feeding and she will go right back to sleep.
I love to hold her and for the most part, I have things figured out with her.  I think that my age is coming into play and I seem to be more patient and not as structured with her.  I enjoy holding her till she falls asleep. She is also really starting to interact and smile often.
 She has been smiling for a few weeks now, but just this week, she will smiles constantly as you talk to her.  She also wants to talk back to you.  She is very active and she loves to kick and move her arms a lot.  She
 also just found her hands this week and she loves to put them in her mouth. 

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Spring Break and General Conference Weekend

 For Spring Break this year, we did a few different things.  On Monday, I took the boys to the park.  It was windy and a little cold, so I sat in the car with Parker and the boys played and then went over and fed the ducks.
 On Wednesday, I took the kids to Fat Cats.  Jacqui watched Parker for me so I could just focus on the boys.  It snowed huge snow flakes this day.  The boys had a fun time bowling.  Cooper did a really good job and Clayton had a fun time trying to get the heavy ball down the lane.  His ball kept curving off and only hit a pin or two. 
 Bryce and I took all the kids to a movie.  It was Parker's first movie and she slept through the whole thing.  This is one of our favorite things to do as a family.  We get drinks, candy, a bag of popcorn and head in to enjoy the show.  I love watching the boys laugh at the funny scenes. During the week, Bryce and I went to watch Divergent.  We grabbed Chic-fil-A and headed into the show.  We both read the book so we were excited to see the movie.  We really enjoyed the movie and spending some time with each other.
 On Friday, we took the boys over to Steph and Paul's new pool to go swimming for a few minutes.  It was cold outside and the water was somewhat warm.  The boys froze in the water,but they enjoyed swimming.  Bryce and I had Papa Douglas watch the kids while we went to the Logan Temple to do sealings.  It was a nice evening and so great to get back to the temple after having the baby.  Afterwards, we at Cowboy Beans and watched a movie. 
 During general conference, the boys still pretty good to stay still and try to listen to a little bit here and there.  Grandma Douglas showed Clayton how to stitch.  She even let him string the needle and try it out.  I love that she is so patient and kind with the kids.  She is such a good grandma to them and they love her a lot.
 Papa became attached to Parker over the weekend because he got to babysit her.  He could not get enough of her.  She smiled at him and tried to talk to him.  It was fun to sit back and watch him just adore her and interact with her.  After the morning session of conference, we ate lunch with Grandma and Papa and then headed out to Jill and Brandon's to visit their family.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Post Partum Health Issues

I can definitely say that both Parker and I really were blessed during the labor and delivery.  Sometimes I hear stories or I think about all the things that could have gone wrong, but we were blessed to have a perfect delivery and perfect baby.
After I had Parker, I had major problems with my back.  I could not stand for more than a few minutes at a time.  I ended up seeing a chiropractor that put my rib plate back into place three days after Parker was born.  He also fixed my Ia-tel Hernia which was causing me acid reflux for the past 10 years.  Over the next five weeks, I kept falling apart.  My knee swelled up for 3 days and my middle finger did the same thing.  My left hip flexor caused me some problems and I had a hard time walking for three days.
 Bryce and I went on a date to the shooting range in Layton.  We shot our pistols and then had a little competition to shoot the target at a quick pace without aiming.  It was so much fun to shoot my gun and get more familiar with it. The next day, I was so sore and my right shoulder had the largest knot in it.
  I also had problems with vertigo for three weeks.  I had a massage therapist work on my neck and shoulders.  I went to my cranio sacral therapist.  I had a chiropractor adjust my neck.  I tried the "do it yourself" technique to try to get it to go away.  Finally, I went back to Wayne Hirsbrunner, the chiropractor that fixed my ribs and acid.  After doing some resistant tests on my arm, he decided that the pressure in my spinal fluid was low.  He shook my neck and head and I haven't had vertigo since then. 
 Another problem I have been experiencing is kind of embarrassing. When use the bathroom, it is somewhat painful. This has been going on for a 5 weeks now.  I talked to my brother, who suffered from an Anal Fissure a year ago and had to get surgery, and he told me to get into a doctor.  I finally went to my OB and he told me that if was most likely from having a baby.  He said its not a hemorrhoid and its not cancer. He told me that when you have a baby, it really causes havoc to your rectum.  That was nice to know.  After talking to a friend of mine, its sounds like it is common to have problems after having a baby. 

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

2 Month Appointment

Parker weighed in at 11 lbs for her two month old appointment (50%).  She was 23 inches long(55%).  Of course, her head was in the 75 percentile.  The doctor has repeatedly asked me "how he (Parker) is doing" when he walks in our room. All three times, I had her wrapped in a pink blanket, but because she is Parker, she will be called a boy!
Parker had to get three shots and take a live dose of the Rotovirus. That night she projectile vomited all over the both of us and then she had little desire to eat.  For the next five days, she went from four ounces to two ounces a feeding. It must have really bothered her belly.  She didn't run a fever or have any other side effects.
Parker loves to squeal and act dramatic when she poops in her diapers.  She acts like its the end of the world if you don't change her immediately after she poops.  She loves to lay on her back and look at the lights or fan.  She really loves it if someone will talk to her.  Clayton loves to climb in her crib and entertain her for me.  He is so helpful and loves to check on her and make her happy.
 We all adore this little princess that has come into our lives.  Cooper doesn't hold her much, but he gives her a kiss on her head every night before bedtime.  He also tells me she is the cutest baby ever.  He still likes to talk to her in a high pitched voice, but she likes it and smiles at him all the time!

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Baby Blessing for Parker

 On March 16th, we were able to get our sweet little Parker blessed in church.  Bryce gave a beautiful blessing.  The men who stood in the circle were: Paul, Kyle, Bruce, Papa Douglas, Derek, Brad, Weston, and Jared.  Parker was perfect and slept through the entire blessing and entire meeting!
 It was a cool and breezy morning, but Jocelynn was able to snap some good pictures of our family. Parker did good considering it was cold and she was in a little dress.  She looked so precious and angelic on this day!
 We had so many visitors come to our house afterwards for a brunch.  We served a french toast casserole, breakfast casserole, fruit, muffins, and pumpkin bars.  We had about 45 people in our home, so it was a little chaotic.  Before we started to eat, I read my journal entry on Faith and then we blessed the food and enjoyed visiting with each other.  Parker got passed from person to person, but she was good.
 Parker was blessed to feel the love that her family and Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ has for her.  She was blessed to have a burning testimony and desire to live the principles of the gospel and be an example to those around you.  She was told to not hide her light, but let it shine for everyone to see.  She was told that people will be drawn to her because of her example. She was blessed to have a desire to be married in the temple and find a worthy young man to take her there. 
 By the end of the day and as most of our friends and family had left, Jocelynn started taking pictures of Parker in her beautiful long dress.  She was good for a few minutes and then she was done.  She screamed and cried and was finished with the pictures.  As soon as we changed her, I cuddled her in a blanket and she drifted off to sleep. 

Saturday, March 15, 2014

7 Weeks Old

 The first four weeks of Parker’s life seemed to go really smoothly.  She was eating 2-3 oz every four hours and sleeping all the time.  Bryce and I hold her a lot, which has ended up spoiling her a bit. She has had some stomach issues the last three weeks.  We ended up putting her on Zantac because she seemed to be having acid.  Though now I am not so sure.  She gets really fussy now and then and we can tell that her stomach is bothering her.  There is really no rhyme or reason with her.  She will be fine one minute and then mad the next.  She wants her binki but doesn’t want it at the same time.  When she realizes there is no milk in the binki, she gets upset and screams.
 We have really enjoyed her so far.  I also realize that these hard times with her will pass.  It seems like babies go through stages so quickly.  She still has her days and nights mixed up.  When she eats at night, she thinks she needs to stay up for an hour or so.  We try to feed her around 10:30 at night and then she usually goes about 5-6 hours till her next feeding.  Bryce has been so good to help me with her at night.  Together, we have been able to function and not lose too much sleep.  
 Parker is 7 weeks today.  She is really growing quickly.  Her cheeks have really filled out and she seems to be longer.  She just started smiling 3 days ago.  She has to be in the perfect mood to smile though.  She loves her swing and car seat.  She can sleep in both of them like a champ.  She also loves it when we talk to her.  She tries to move her mouth and mimic us.  
 Parker loves to takes baths. This is something she has always enjoyed since the first day she was born.  I have been bathing her in our kitchen sink, but she is starting to outgrow it.  She also enjoys it when we prop her head back a little when we hold her out in front of us.  It makes me wonder if her head was positioned like that while she was in my stomach. Cooper is finally starting to show a little more attention to Parker.  He wants to hold her now and then and he enjoys talking to her.  Clayton likes to lay next to her.