Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Riley's 1st Christmas

Riley sittin on presents because we were running out of room!
Santa Baby!

What am I eating? Nothing.....

Sweet Riley baby with her 'baby's first Christmas' hat

How we spent Christmas morning at Childrens Hospital... Poor sickers Riley!

Christmas already? It's hard to believe Riley is already nearly 8 months old! We celebrated her 1st Christmas in what was meant to be our 'traditional way' but ended up being quite non traditional in nearly all aspects!
Christmas Eve we headed over to Smoochies house for munchies and presents, Riley actually did quite well pulling on the wrapping paper and had fun with all her new toys (but mostly Smoochies old toys!). We spent our time with Smoochie, Grampa Chuck, Ryan & Mysty and then headed home for some much needed sleep... that we ended up not really getting. Riley ended up waking up several times throughout the early morning sick to her tummy, when things seemed to be getting worse and not better we packed ourselves into the car and headed to Childrens Hospital (quite non traditional, eh?). The nurses and Drs were really impressed with how calm Riley was and how she let them do whatever it was they wanted to, she was such a big girl! Someone had donated some 'pillow pals' to the hospital so they gave Riles this huge pillow duck, she loved it! That was her first Christmas present of the day since she was too sick to even want to look at hers at home.

We didn't stay at the hospital long, they gave her some anti nausea medicine and pedialite and then sent us on our way. Since we had missed our traditional family breakfast with Dave's family we still swung by Aunti Di's (Riley's babysitter and Dave's sister) where she got to cuddle with her Auntie and open a few presents there. We had a good couple hours at home and then went to David's moms for Christmas dinner. Riley was in pretty good spirits and had fun opening a few presents, then she got tired so I ended up behind a WALL of presents for her that I got to open and play with :) Riley is much better now, and was even nice enough to give me that tummy bug of hers - it sure packs a punch (that's why we're a few days late with this blog!). Anyway, I hope you enjoy the couple pictures and had a very Merry Christmas & have a great New Year!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Hopefully the last hospital update on my mom!

Hopefully today or tomorrow my mom will be released from the hospital! Whoohoo! I know she's going stir crazy in there!

Her chest tube should be removed today and if all goes well she could go home this afternoon. I stopped by and spent some time with her last night and I think she's actually doing pretty well. We went for a walk trying to see Christmas lights out of the window (which was a bummer we couldn't see any) and just had a good time talking between the two of us. I called her on my way home from work and I could tell she sounded bummed so I took a detour and headed back towards the hospital; after I left the nurse that came in to take her vitals said that she could tell my mom just lit up when I got there. I'm so glad I was able to help put a smile on her face and ease the annoyance of being stuck in the hospital for days on end!

I'm so excited for her to be getting out!!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Sunday update

Hi All!

So the good news it my mom is doing good. They removed the probes that were her constant supply of medication which seemed to cause some pain, but, after they found a happy medium she seems to be doing okay again. She is still having some leakage from her lymph system ( I think that's what it is anyway!) but they think it's getting better. They're letting her have liquids today and possibly food tomorrow, so it looks like the soonest she'll be released is Tuesday.

David, Riley and I went for a visit yesterday - mom says that Riley is the best medicine & she certainly proved to be when she couldn't stop giving her Smoochie kisses!

Hope all is well with everyone, time to go finish the Christmas decorations!

Friday, December 12, 2008


My mom called me again this morning sounding FANTASTIC! She's feeling good, sounds good and the best news..... The tests came back and she is CANCER FREE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It sounds like they'll still do some chemo in about a month after she has healed just incase there are some microscopic pieces in there; I'm so glad they're doing everything they can to get rid of every last bit! Chuck told me that her eye looks great (woohoo again!) and the Drs are really impressed with how she's recovering.... She was so sleepy after her surgery last week but now she's more alert and feeling so much better.

I think Riley is sooper excited that her Smoochie is going to be around much longer :)

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Day after surgery update....

Hi All!

So this morning on my way to work I got a, quite surprisingly, cheery phone call from my mom. She sounded great, still a little tired, but she just sounded really good. Her calling me was deffinitely a plus! She's been so drugged up the last week which has been pretty tough on her memory and ability to stay awake, I think she's really looking forward to conciousness!

Her hospital room is full of flowers and stuffed animals - I know that they have given her plenty of smiles so thanks to all of you who have sent messages, made phone calls and kept her in your prayers!

As always, feel free to call or text my cell for any information! 303-981-7004

Ooh, I almost forgot! I've had several requests for St. Josephs information so here you go, but please be considerate if you call to keep your conversations short so she can get the rest she needs and head home as soon as possible (still looking like Sunday/Monday depending on pain).
1835 Franklin Street - Denver, CO 80218 - 303.837.7111. If you need specific information like how to spell her last name or her room number I can give that to you in a seperate e-mail (for privacy reasons!).

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Smoochie Update

Today my mom had her 2nd surgery to remove the rest of the tumor that was unable to be removed last week. Her surgery started at 8:30 and ended about 5 hours later. Her surgeon removed a part of her first rib, was able to navigate around the nerves and is confident that they were able to remove all the cancer. They needed to separate a nerve in order to get to the rest of the tumor that he thinks may result in Horner Syndrome, a slight droop of her left eye lid. His theory is giving her life by removing the tumor is much better than stopping at the nerve to stop a little droop.... I have to say I agree with him!

Her epidural was removed since it wouldn't affect the new area that this surgery was performed in, but they did insert some probes that will deliver anesthetic automatically for the next 72 hours. The hospital will release her probably over the weekend or next Monday, depending on her pain.

She seemed in good spirits this morning before the surgery, I'm sure she's ready to have all this done and over with! Thank you to all who kept her in your prayers, I'll keep posting as I have updates!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Riley's Smoochie....

Most of you all know that my mom was diagnosed with lung cancer about two months ago. After several months of shoulder and arm pain the Dr's found a Pancoast tumor on her right lung that had been pressing against her nerves causing all the pain. First of all, it's a good thing that it was pressing against the nerve because this type of tumor usually goes unnoticed until it's too late to treat.

My mom went through 5 weeks of radiation Monday-Friday and two stints of chemo the first Monday-Monday and the last Monday-Monday of the radiation treatment. The tumor shrunk from 4.5cm to 2.5cm! That result is more than what the Dr's were looking for! The location of the tumor is in the back, high on her right lung (basically inside and outside the lung behind a mass of nerves, veins and arteries making what they call a 'birds nest'). On Wednesday, December 3rd, her surgeon went through her right side and removed the tumor. Unfortunately the tumor had lodged itself up against the chest cavity and the surgeon was not able to remove all of the cancer without damaging the nerves to her arm. However, there was a neurosurgeon that feels they can go through another path and he can help navigate through the nerves and remove the rest of the cancer in her chest cavity. He will be joining my moms surgical staff tomorrow for her 2nd surgery to remove the rest of the cancer, HOPEFULLY.

The hospital seems to be doing well at managing her pain and she seems to be in good spirits, just quite tired! Like mother like daughter, yesterday my mom spent her 2nd wedding anniversary in the hospital (I was @ the same hospital for pancreatitis on my 2nd anniversary!). Chuck seems to be handling everything really well and is taking great care of my mom.

I will be taking tomorrow off work and will be able to provide updates for anyone wishing to have one. Feel free to call my cell or send a text message - 303-981-7004.

Hope all is well with you all, please wish best wishes for my mom!

Long overdue update!

Whew! Well this is long overdue! The last month and a half has been full of chaos and surprises, so let's see if we can't catch up, shall we?

First things first, Riley is doing awesome! She crawls, rolls, maneuvers... somehow gets to the other end of a room quite quickly! She doesn't fully crawl on hands and knees, it's more of a crawl & sit, crawl & sit, crawl & climb up on something. The girl LOVES to stand!! She turns 7 months tomorrow and stands quite well, even takes steps when she's holding onto your hands. We had to move her crib mattress down once I walked into her room and saw her nearly bending over the top of her crib! She's wearing 9 and 12 month pants and overalls already, her long little legs make the 6-9 month size she's supposed to be in look like Capri's (she definitely got the height gene from David!).

She started eating solid foods just before 6 months old and she barely ate it, we started her on step two foods (with little chunks & new flavors) this week and she chows down! She loves to taste new things and stares you down when you're eating until you give her a taste (she loves BBQ sauce!). When we set her on the floor after about a minute she entertains herself with 'ba ba ba bababa ba ba ba bababa', lately she's been throwing in a random 'ma' and 'ga' along with her rambles.

About a week ago she learned how to give kisses, now if you ask for one she looks at you like it's so much work and then kisses you with her mouth open. It's adorable. She's also learning how to clap with her hands open instead of her fists together and to stick out her tongue.. Haha, I tried showing her how to stick it out and she did it once, then when Peyton (one of our dogs) walked up Riles licked her! I think the tongue thing is going to take a little more work :)
That's about all the Riles updates for now, I'll do my best to keep you all updated a little better!