Monday, May 31, 2010

Pomegranate Cooler Recipe

Looking through some recipes I bookmarked I saw this WW's one for Pomegranate Coolers. It looks fantastic, and I can't wait to try one. Yum-O, and only 1 point!

Happy Memorial Day!

Happy Memorial Day!
Thank you to all the men and women that serve and have served our country!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Sew Something Saturday! Dish Towel Apron!

Yesterday we went to Old Navy to check out there great sale. They had all there clearance stuff an additional 50% off! Needless to say, I ended up with these cute "Mother's Day dish towels" for .80 cents a 2 pack!!!!! (who knew Old Navy ever had dish towels) I was so excited, I have been looking for cute dish towels to try out this apron tutorial for a LONG time.

There are so many great dish towel apron tutorials out there, but I knew in my head how I wanted to make it, so when I saw the blog I Have To Say's tutorial, I new this was the one to try. I made a few size adjustments since I was making mine for a 2 year old though.

It turned out SO cute, and was really easy. Molly was already sleeping when I made it tonight, so she will just have to try it on in the morning, I think she is going to love it, and it will definitely get tons of use. Now I just need to come up with someone to make an apron for with the other towel. :)

Happy Sewing! For more great Sew Something Saturday posts, click HERE.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Neurosurgeon Appt.

Here is the new update from our Carepage-

Today Molly had a follow up appt. with Dr. Skarli's office. He is the one who did her surgery. Everything is going great, they just talked to us about how she was doing, and answered my long list of questions. We also got to see all of Molly's MRI and CT Scan pictures from before and after the surgery.(they actually are giving us a copy of all the pictures on a disk!) This was crazy, seeing the tumor really hit home about the actuality of how bad things really were, and how lucky we are to have her here today. We are so blessed for every minute we get to have Molly in our lives, and are just unbelievably grateful that she made it this far and is doing fantastic. God has big plans for her.

Her next MRI is scheduled for July, and after that we will met with Dr. Skarli again to go over the results. Molly will need MRI's every three months for a few years. In a few weeks, she has an appt. with all of the therapists again, to check in on how things are going. But else we have a nice break from the medical world.

If you have any questions about anything with Molly. Her hospital stay, surgery, the actual tumor, JPA, etc. Feel free to ask, or post them in the comments and I will be happy to answer them.

Hoping everyone has a great holiday weekend. We are so grateful to have all of you in our lives, God Bless!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Menu Monday!

It's Monday again, time for a new week's menu plan. I was being lazy this weekend, and didn't even think about what we were going to have to eat this week until today. Hope you all have some great meals planned. Here is what we're having.

Monday- Steaks on the grill
Tuesday- Slow Cooker BBQ Pulled Pork Roast
Wednesday- Pizza Pouches
Thursday- Taco Pasta
Friday- Skillet Enchiladas

For more great menu planning ideas, visit

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Sew Something Saturday! Fabric Bracelet

This week for Sew Something Saturday I whipped up these quick and adorable fabric bracelets. I used the great tutorial I saw at Women Who Do It All. They are so easy and fun, and are a great way to use up some scrap fabric. I am excited to make some to match all my summer outfits. :) Happy Sewing! (for more great Sew Something Saturday Projects click here)

Friday, May 21, 2010

Frugal Friday! Free Limeade

Go to this link to print your coupon to get a FREE Limeade Sparkler at Taco Bell until July 11. I am super excited to try one of these.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Toddler Time Thursday - Card Book

I saw the great idea over at A Mommy's Adventures a long time ago, and loved it. We have been making "Card Books," ever since. Molly has a book of her 2 year birthday cards, and a book of Christmas cards. After being in the hospital, she had so many cards we ended up making 2 books!

Molly LOVES reading through these books, and looking at all the great pictures in the cards. She always wants us to read them to her and tell her who sent them. I think this is such a great way to enjoy the cards for along time.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Going to Disney? "Almost Wordless Wednesday"

Molly LOVES, LOVES, LOVES Cinderella. At some point every single day, she is wearing her Cinderella dress and having everyone in character playing along, even the cat, lol. So, I am pretty sure we are going to take her to Disney World in October!!!! After seeing her go through so much pain and trauma, I wanted to treat her to something she will LOVE. We weren't planning on going to Disney until our girls were quite a bit older and we could save more for the trip, but we are sure now is the time. :)

So, my question for all of you....

Any tips on going to Disney with young kids? What to do? Where to stay? Should we fly or drive? Any tips you have would be appreciated. :) THANKS!!!

Molly Physical Therapy Update

I thought I would update here the same thing I posted on Molly's Carepage, in case you don't follow there. :)

Today we headed to Mary Free Bed, outpatient this time :), for Molly's follow up physical therapy session. 2 weeks ago when we left there, Molly still wasn't able to walk on her own, and kind of leaned right a bit and didn't quite have her balance back. The physical therapist thought that with how fast she was improving, that with a little more time to get her strength back she would be doing much better. So, instead of decided to do outpatient therapy then, he wanted to check her after she had time to get stronger.

So, today was the day they were going to decide if she would need more therapy or not. Molly met with the physical therapist this morning for an hour. Molly did fantastic, and was having a lot of fun playing the "games" with the therapist. They decided she doesn't need any further therapy, YEAH! They were very surprised at how well she was doing and said she is right back on track for her age. We did get a few different things to work on at home to help build strength. We are hoping to start Molly doing gymnastics for the summer, which will really help with a lot of those different exercises.

Molly's next doctors appointment is next Thursday with her Neurosurgeon. We are getting anxious for this one, and ready to see what he has to say. We have also been noticing that Molly is getting very tired again the past couple days, and looking very worn down. Hopefully this is normal and part of the healing process, they said it takes 3 months, but we will be checking this out next Thursday.

Thanks for continuing to think of and pray for our Molly. We are SO grateful for each one of you.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Menu Monday!

I am so excited to have a semi-normal week again. It has been to long since I've actually made a real meal, let alone planned the week. Nothing new this week, just some quick easy recipes and a few fun dinners I don't have to plan. :) Here is what we are having this week:

Monday- Grands Pizzas
Tuesday- Friends over for dinner!
Wednesday- Beef Taquitos
Thursday- Sweet and Sour Chicken
Friday- Out to eat with the husband!
Saturday- Nieces birthday party!

For more great menu planning ideas, visit

3 months old!

Nora is 3 months old already!!! I just can't stop taking pictures of those adorable cheeks!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Painting White Crayon - Toddler Time Thursday!

I can hardly believe Molly is home painting!

Molly always enjoys painting. This week I wrote on the paper with white crayon first, and then Molly painted over it to see what hidden pictures showed up. She LOVED this, it really got her to focus on painting the whole page. And she couldn't stop laughing at some of the hidden pictures I drew on the page, I have to admit, it is SO great to hear her laughing again. This is such a fun and easy craft we will definitely be doing again soon.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Molly's Brain Surgery..... the story!

I haven't been meaning to put this post off, but I realized it is so hard to wrap my brain around what happened in the past few weeks, and trying to write it all out in one spot was harder than I thought. If you want the day by day of the experience, you can read it on our CarePage. Else, I'll try to put it into words here.

Monday, April 19 it was discovered that our daughter Molly had a brain tumor. She has had several small health issues in the last few months, and after ruling out several other problems, her MRI at the Children's Hospital revealed a lime sized tumor at the back of her brain. We were shocked! The Neurosurgeon came and told us that Molly needed surgery to remove the tumor or she would die. And that was it, no options, she had to have brain surgery.

Molly was admitted into the Pediatric ICU at Helen DeVos Children's Hospital immediately following the MRI, since she needed to be closely monitored until her surgery, on Friday April 23. During the week in the PICU we saw tons of different doctors, and met with the Neurosurgeon numerous times to go over what would happen during the surgery and the risks. The risks were very scary, there was a 2/3 chance the tumor would be malignant. And a 1 in 5 chance the surgery would cause posterior fossa syndrome and she would loose the ability to talk. These odds seemed horrible to us, but in a weird way, the fact that surgery was our only option, made them easier to bear.

Throughout the week, Molly got worse and worse fast. She started having trouble swallowing and walking, due to hydrocephalus from the tumor blocking the spinal fluid. She was hooked up to an IV and started on steroids and other different meds. to prepare for surgery. These made her sick, which was hard for her as she was throwing up all the time. We had lots of blood work, another CT Scan, dehydration, and a bunch or other tests as the week went on.

Friday morning, April 23 at 9am they started her surgery. The surgery went great! The Neurosurgeon said it was the best case scenario. They were able to remove all of it, and it wasn't fused, which is what we had hoped and prayed for. We were so relieved to know we made it over that hurdle.

That night was really hard. It was awful to watch the ventilator breath for her. She also was having spontaneous eye movement and sort of waking up and crying and coughing, but was really not awake. That night she was throwing up even though she shouldn't have had anything in her stomach, so they also ended up having to pump her stomach. She had to have another MRI that evening after the surgery. This is to make sure they got it all, the good new is, they did! We were thrilled. The tumor was a JPA, Juvenile Pilocytic Astrocytoma. And the pathology report came back to reveal in was not cancerous! We feel so lucky to have gotten such great news.

The next few days after surgery were hard. Molly wasn't talking or moving much. She had a blank stare and seemed very sad. After she started being awake more they started to worry she had a form of cerebellar syndrome or posterior fossa syndrome. After a few days, they stopped the steroids she was on completely. She was taking these to control the swelling of her brain, you are supposed to slowly tapper off steroids, but since she was getting so sick and acting depressed they decided that once the swelling should be under control to just stop them. This was the best thing we could have done. As soon as she was off the drugs, she started acting like herself again. She was talking and eating!

We finally got to move to the normal Pediatric floor. For here, as soon as they got her stomach to start feeling better, Molly improved really quickly. And the next day we got moved to Mary Free Bed(a therapy/rehab center).

We only ended up being at Mary Free Bed for 2 days! The therapists said she really was beating the odds, and when you have a tumor the size Molly had removed it should take weeks if not months to be back to where she is already!

The Speech Therapist said she was "blown away." And that Molly was sounding and talking fantastic. She did the different assessment tests and stopped because she was so far ahead of where she should be at her age. She said Molly will need no further speech therapy, not even outpatient! This is such fantastic news, considering 4 days earlier she was barely saying 3 words!

The Occupational Therapist was also so impressed. Everything she had Molly do, she did great. She even had her doing some higher level things just to see where she was at, it was fun to watch Molly acting like she did before surgery, she has such a great attention span for these activities. The Occupational Therapist said that she doesn't need any outpatient OT either!

The Physical Therapist was the one we thought would need to work with her the most. But we couldn't believe her change in the 2 days we were there. She was still a bit tipsy and leaned to the right, but was getting so much better. The physical therapist said that he really thinks as she gets her strength back she will improve on her own. They said for everyday that she didn't move, it will take 3-7 days to get that strength back, so we should see huge improvements in the next month! For the next two weeks we have to kind of spot her when she walks and let her practice and then we will go back to Mary Free Bed for them to test her and decide if they want to do any outpatient therapy here!

We also met with the child psychologist, which I was extremely happy about. Molly started to shut down a bit and stop talking and participating when other people are around. She also now hates anytime a doctor of nurse comes in and freaks out if anyone needs to touch her arms or legs or take her vitals. I wanted to make sure how we should deal with this and what to do to help a two year old deal with this traumatic of an experience. She really helped and thinks that Molly will do fine and is handling it just like you would expect a 2 year old to.

Since we've been home things are going great. Molly loved being in her own "pink" room. And is talking and walking like she used too. She is actually even walking better than she ever has!

Last week Molly had lots of different doctors appointments. She saw the Pediatric Ophthalmologist since her eyes are still not working together all the time. She also had to have a CT Scan, and spinal tap to make sure that they didn't miss anything from the pathology. This went great, and showed no sign of cancer! Over the next few weeks, and years, she has lots of follow up to make sure that everything is good.

It's hard to explain how the last few weeks went for us. Sometimes we are struggling, sometimes we are strong, and sometimes we still didn't believe it was truly happening. We had some of the best moments of our lives, and some of the worst. But we made it though.

Molly truly is a miracle! We are in awe of God's love and feel so lucky everyday to have been given such amazing daughters. Thank you all for praying hard and keeping sweet Molly in your thoughts. We will never forget this time in our lives, and never forget how much faith, love and support we received from all of you.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Care Pages!!! Thank You All!!!

I just wanted to post to say, "Thank You So Much," for all you thoughts, prayers and support during Molly's hospitalization, surgery and recovery. We are so blessed and lucky to have so many people thinking about and caring for us.

I am sorry that I really didn't get to blog about the whole experience. Everything was just so fast and busy, so I only had enough time and energy to post in one spot. I used CarePages to update on Molly's brain tumor, hospital stay, surgery, etc. If you are interested in reading this, you have to sign up with CarePages, but it is free. Read Molly's story here. It is a great site that lets people read updates on what is going on, and easily post comments.

Tomorrow I will post a summarized version of what has been happening in the last few weeks. We are very happy that Molly is doing AMAZING, and we are all home getting back into the swing of things.