Monday, June 22, 2009

Happy Father's Day

Brody and Colby are so lucky to have such an amazing daddy! He is attentive, loving, comforting, encouraging, supportive, firm when he needs to be, and very patient. I am sometimes amazed at his level of patience with the boys, especially when Brody has one of his occasional meltdowns or when Colby doesn't want to eat anything. Jason also has the amazing ability to just be a big kid, which I really admire and love about him. Brody and Colby always have so much fun with their daddy!

Jason, thank you for being such an incredible husband to me and dad to our two boys. I feel so blessed to have you! We have faced some terrifying challenges over the past year...challenges that we never could have even imagined. Together, though, we have somehow managed to survive. I know I would be so very lost without you! You always seem to be strong for me when I need you most, and you have been absolutely amazing with Colby and all of his doctors' appointments, ER visits, surgery, hospital stays, and just his everyday feeding issues. I appreciate you more than you will ever know! Thank you!

Since Jason is such a wonderful father and husband, I wanted to get him something extra special to help him remember this "just like daddy" stage that Brody is in right now. It is so cute how Brody wants to do everything just like his daddy! It is a little scary at times too, like when Brody pretends to spit into his "yucky bottle," but for the most part, Jason is a great person for Brody and Colby to imitate. So, I decided to have some pictures taken of the boys doing some of the things that daddy always does. This was a lot of fun and very easy, since Brody always does these things anyways.
A friend of mine and professional photographer, Shannon Watson, took the pictures for me, and she did an awesome job!! All of the pictures turned out so great! I had a very tough time choosing which pics to have printed for his collage frame, but luckily, Shannon was nice enough to help me decide. Jason LOVED it!! I am normally not able to surprise him with a gift that he really loves, so I am glad that we were able to do it for Father's Day. Thank you Shannon!!

Below are a few of my favorites that were taken. Jason and I can't wait to order some more to hang up in our house. Hope you enjoy! Also, visit to see more of Shannon's work. She is a very talented photographer and a super sweet person!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Date Night with Brody

This past Saturday night, Brody and I went on our first date! This is the first time that I have been able to spend special time with Brody, where we were actually doing something fun. When I told him we were going out without Daddy and Colby, the first thing he said was, "We have to go pick up Colby's medicine?" Wow! That made me really sad!! Is that all he thinks that he and I can do together...stuff for Colby? I told him that this night was all about him!

Brody and I started our date at my nieces' dance recital. I wasn't sure how Brody would do at TPAC watching dance after dance, but he absolutely loved it! He sat in my lap, and I don't think he took his eyes off of the stage for more than a few seconds the entire time. He was so cute! He really got into clapping as each dance finished. I should have known he would enjoy it, since he loves music and dancing so much! He even asked me if he could learn to break dance "like those boys on the stage." I am all for it, but I don't know if daddy is! My nieces, Harper and Darbye, did awesome, and my sister's (Jeanine) dancers all did amazing as well. (Jeanine is a teacher at the studio, DC Dance Factory in Franklin / this is also where I took dance for many years)

After the recital, Brody and I were starving, so we stopped at Sonic for a quick dinner. As we were waiting on our food to come out, Brody said, "mommy come back here and eat with me." So, we sat in the back of the car eating our dinner and talking about all of the fun we were having. I wish I could have frozen time right then and there. My little baby Brody is getting so big. I want to stop and cherish every moment where he asks to hold my hand, sit in my lap, or have a special dinner with just the two of us. He is just so awesome!

I can't wait for our next date night. I had so much fun spending that special time with Brody with no interruptions. Jason also had a good time spending some quality time with Colby with no interruptions from Brody. We have decided that we will have to do this more often!

Cain is Home!!

After 11 days in the hospital, Cain was discharged late Tuesday night. He is doing well and looks great! Brad, Catherine, and Cain are all very happy to be home again. This means that Cain has now successfully made it through his second surgery...yeah Cain!!! Only one surgery to go! We are so happy for you Clinkscales Family!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Neurology Follow Up

Colby had another follow-up appointment with his neurologist, Dr. Barnes, yesterday. We are so happy to report that the appointment went well!! Dr. Barnes was impressed and pleased with how well Colby is doing. At our last appointment, Dr. Barnes was a little concerned about Colby's muscle tone, but this time, he said his tone is great! Dr. Barnes also asked us several questions regarding Colby's development, and based on our answers and his observation of Colby, he is in agreement with our pediatrician that Colby is right on track developmentally. I guess Colby knew he was being evaluated, because he showed off all of his "tricks" for Dr. Barnes. He was smiling, babbling and saying "da-da," using both of his hands to pick up and hold his toys and chew on them, and waving to Dr. Barnes and all of the nurses. One thing is for sure, Colby is a social baby!! I am a little worried that I have a little politician on my hands! Ha!

We are very fortunate that Colby has shown no complications from the seizures he had in the NICU. We are also fortunate that he has had no additional seizures. Dr. Barnes did warn us, though, that Colby still might encounter some complications in his future. It is possible that the seizures could have affected parts of his brain that involve higher cognitive skills, such as reading comprehension. We will have no way of knowing this until Colby is older and has started reading, so we will just have to wait and see.

Jason and I were both dreading this appointment, because our last experiences with Dr. Barnes weren't so positive. We understand that doctors have to present the worst case scenarios to parents, but it is not easy to hear a doctor say that your baby may have all sorts of developmental delays and problems. We left our last appointment with him feeling very down and extremely worried about Colby's future. I am glad that this appointment was more positive and upbeat...I needed this! Dr. Barnes even complimented me and Jason. From research studies he has conducted in the NICU, he has found that babies with "good parental DNA" recover much better from seizures than other babies. His exact words were, "good parental DNA saves baby's brain." Thank you God for the "good" DNA.

Believe it or not, the first thing Dr. Barnes said when he walked into the room was, "Well Colby, it looks like your mommy has been feeding you well." Wow! He thinks Colby looks well fed! I love it!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Never a Dull Moment

I've noticed that Colby seems to eat more if he is distracted, so I try to keep the TV on during meal times. I know this is the opposite of what families should do, but we go with what works! Anyways, as we were eating breakfast the other morning, the Black Eyed Peas were performing on the View. The first song they performed was Boom Boom Pow, and Brody just loved it! He started singing it, and I couldn't help but laugh. He is so funny! I'm glad I was able to catch it on video to share with you. He is still singing this regularly! I think I might have to go buy the CD for him.

After singing for a minute, Brody decided he wanted to get up and dance. He also tried to get Colby to dance. He was trying to teach him how to "shake his booty." I promise he is saying "booty," even though it sounds like something else!

Yes, there is never a dull moment at the Hitchcock House, and I love every single second of it! How could I not smile and thank God when I watch these two amazing boys that He has blessed us with? I love my little man and my little monkey more than words can express!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Looking Good...Just Not Eating

After Karen spoke with Dr. Liske about Colby this morning, they decided that he should come in to be checked out. They did an echo and EKG, which both looked good. His sats are still around 85, so that is great! Dr. Liske examined him, and he is confident that Colby is doing well. So, there is nothing medically wrong keeping him from eating. Apparently, he is just not wanting to eat right now. Dr. Liske assured us that this is not a problem. He feels that this might just be a developmental issue, meaning he is behaving like other "normal" babies and wanting more solid foods and less milk.

Dr. Liske has just instructed us to continue trying more and more high fat/ high calorie solid foods and not obsess over the number of ounces of milk that he is drinking. Ha! Easier said than done! This is going to be extremely hard for me!!! I have written down every ounce that has gone into Colby's mouth since he was born. I honestly could look back and tell you exactly how many ounces he drank on any given day. I know it seems crazy, but it helped me in some way. Of course, it also stressed me out, since I always knew the days he didn't eat "enough."

I have also been told to not take Colby for any more weight checks until his cath procedure on July 15th. Wow! That is an entire month before he will be weighed again. This just seems crazy to me, because I have taken him in for weight checks every 1-2 weeks since bringing him home from the hospital. How will I ever make it?

I guess these instructions from Dr. Liske are good for us, especially me. Obsessing and constant weighing is not going to help anything. I have to let go, relax some, and realize that I am not in control!! God is in control, and He will continue to take care of our monkey, just like He has over the last 10 months.

I wish I could tell you that we will be doctor appt free until his cath, but I can't. Colby has a follow up appointment with his neurologist on Tuesday of next week. I am not sure what to expect from this appointment, but I am hoping that it is problem free. It should be a simple exam to make sure he is not suffering any complications from the seizures he had when he was born. We will keep you posted!


Well, I took Colby for a weight check on Monday of this week. I went in to that office just knowing that he had gained several ounces and would finally weigh 16 lbs. Boy was I wrong! Our little monkey had lost 2 oz in 2 weeks! He now only weighs 15 lb 4 oz. What in the world is going on???? He is now taking 27 cal/oz bottles, which is up 3 cal/oz, and he is eating a lot of table food. He eats so much more table food than Brody ever did at this age. How could he have lost weight?!? I absolutely fell apart in front of the nurse. All of the stress and frustration just finally got to me, and I just lost it. Fortunately, she understood and was very sweet about it. I got myself together to leave, but I then lost it again as soon as Jason answered his phone. I just feel so unbelievably defeated and clueless about what to do!

After speaking with our nutritionist, we decided to try another additive in his bottles...beneprotein, which is a protein powder. His bottles will now include the breast milk, corn oil, polycose powder (carbohydrate), and beneprotein. This will raise his caloric intake to 29 cal/oz. I have ordered the beneprotein, so we will have to wait a few days before trying that. The bad part is, though, that now he is not wanting to eat at all. I'm not sure how much good adding calories is going to do when he is not eating! Yesterday, he only took in 4 1/2 ounces by 6:30 pm. The pediatrician tells me he needs 24 oz in a day, but he is barely getting 15 oz these days!

As I was typing this post, the nurse from our cardiologist's office called me back. I had called her to see what we should do with this monkey! At what point should we really worry about his lack of appetite? I don't want him to continue losing weight in the weeks leading up to the Glenn Operation. She does seemed concerned that a 10 month old has no hunger at all, so she is going to discuss it with Dr. Liske and call me back. So, for now, we just have to wait and see what they decide. I am just glad that Colby seems to be so happy still. This would be so much harder on me if he were miserable. He is still his giggly self...thank goodness.

I took the boys to the pool yesterday to relax, have fun, and to stop thinking about the awful weight check. I am glad that I did, because we all had a blast. I have included some pics below. These precious smiling faces are what keep me sane, or at least as sane as I have ever been : ).

I do have some good news to share about Cain! He seems to be doing much better now. This morning, he has even been smiling at everyone! Hopefully his smiles and improvements will continue. You should check out his adorable smiles on their blog!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Update on Cain

Cain's surgery went well yesterday. The surgeon was able to make all of the necessary repairs. He had minimal swelling during the procedure, so they were even able to close his chest wound, which is great! Cain did experience some drops in his O2 levels in recovery, but after breathing treatments, steroids, and 2 blood transfusions, these are looking better now. The doctors are hoping to be able to remove his breathing tube by lunch time today. Thank you for your prayers, and please continue to pray for his quick recovery.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Prayers for Baby Cain

Our "heart friend," Cain, is having his Glenn Operation today. This is the second surgery in the three stage repair process, which is the surgery that Colby will undergo in late August or early September. Cain is 6 months younger than Colby, and I hate that he is having to go through this difficult surgery so young. On a positive side, though, Cain has been growing great! He weighed in at 15 lb 3 oz yesterday! I am so happy that he was able to gain so much weight before this surgery. Now I need to have him teach Colby a thing or two about gaining weight, considering he only weighs 1 lb less than our 10 month old!

Please keep Cain and his parents in your prayers today. His surgery is scheduled for 8 am. I know they would appreciate prayers!! I will update later today, once I hear how Cain is doing. Or, you can check his blog at:

Here is a picture of Cain from Memorial Day. This is my favorite picture of this little guy! He is so cute!! I can't wait for him and Colby to be able to play together.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

A Great Start to Our Summer

The last couple of weeks have been so much fun for us! With the nice weather, we have been getting Colby out more and more. I still worry about him getting sick, but I have been able to relax a little considering we are out of the flu/cold/RSV season. Hallelujah! With his Glenn Operation coming up, Jason and I have decided to get out and have fun with the boys while we can, before house arrest begins again. We were nervous at first about how Colby would do getting out, since he has been on house arrest for his entire life. Fortunately, he loves every second of it! He is such a laid back, happy go lucky baby. As long as he sees me, Jason, or Brody, he is perfectly content. Thank goodness!

Below are some pictures from the last couple of weeks. I think I've gone a little picture crazy lately. As soon as I pull out a camera, both boys just start smiling...they know the drill!! : )

Our first trip to the pool. Brody loves walking and splashing in the baby pool, and Colby has fun playing with toys and watching.

Colby staying cool in his tent (thanks again for the tent is great!)

Max and Brody

Brody got his first set of golf clubs, and the other night, we all went over to the golf course so he could try them out. He was so excited to be playing golf "just like daddy," and Colby had fun watching them from his stroller. Our friends, David and Tracy (Max's parents), went with us. It is fun to watch Brody and Max play together. I think they are both going to be pretty good golfers!

Another place that we like to go on hot summer days/nights are the fountains at the Streets of Indian Lake. The Streets is an outdoor mall, and in the center of the mall are fountains that kids can play in and run through. Both Brody and Colby love playing in water, so this is always a big hit!

There is a pond in our neighborhood, and the other night, we walked over to do some fishing. This was Brody's first fishing experience, and he loved it! He even has his own little fishing pole that Jason and Rachel gave him for his 1st birthday (Thanks guys!) I have a feeling that we will be spending many more nights over at the pond.