I’ve started several posts since I last published one in November. They’ve all ended up in my drafts and left unpublished. Why? Because so much has happened in such a short amount of time that I can’t sort it out enough to make it make sense in a post. So I’m just going to take it month-by-month.
I last posted here in November. We wrapped up Bryson’s first football season and were looking forward to traveling to see family for Thanksgiving. Well, Thanksgiving 2016 turned out to be what we have now dubbed “Pukesgiving 2016” because puke is exactly what we did. One by one, we dropped like flies with an awful stomach virus. Bryson puked in the middle of the night a few days before Thanksgiving, but I thought maybe he’d just eaten too much right before bed. Then the day before Thanksgiving, Bella started puking. About 2 hours later, Brynlee woke up from a nap puking. About 2 hours later, I joined them. I finally took a Zofran because I was becoming dehydrated and could not quit vomiting even after small sips of water. About 3AM, the last man standing- Justin joined the rest of us. We also passed it on to our neighbors and the teens next door who are now our foster sons. (More on that later.) Needless to say, there was no big Thanksgiving meal. After months of waiting, Bella got her ear pierced. Single. Ear. After the first ear (we were at a tattoo shop), she would not let them pierce the other ear. She said maybe when she’s 10, bahaha. It doesn’t bother me so I’ll just wait until she’s ready.
Brynlee turned 3. Can you believe it!? Our baby is THREE. Bryson turned eight the same day we boarded the Carnival Sunshine for an 8 day cruise. We had an amazing trip with stops in Aruba, Bonaire, and Grand Turk. I’ll share more about the cruise in another post. We loved introducing our kids to new places and seeing them experience their first cruise. Unfortunately our dinner table-mates boarded the ship with sick children so by the last few days, Bryson was coming down with what they had. Eventually all 3 of our kids were diagnosed with strep and bronchitis the day before Christmas Eve. So on top of spending Thanksgiving vomiting, they spent Christmas doing breathing treatments. That said, our trip was worth it but it was still frustrating that someone brought a child with strep on the ship. Cruising in December was the absolute best and I would love to do it again soon- like this year!
We became foster parents and welcomed two teen brothers, S & J, into our home. The situation arose 4 days before we were to leave for our cruise. Over the last couple years, we’d come to know our teenage neighbors and care for them so when they ended up in foster care, I called DHR and basically said “We’ll do whatever we need to do to bring them into our home.” So on January 5th, we signed papers and became foster parents. They moved in a couple hours later. Everyone has adjusted well. Our kids were already crazy about them. We spent the month of January getting all of our medical clearances including TB tests and everything in order. It was a crazy few weeks. I took the time to visit my dad’s grave and add some new flowers.
Bella turned 6 in January. All of my kids are growing up- and now we have teens too! We celebrated her birthday at the restaurant of her choice- Mexican. Bella also finally agreed to a hair cut and donated 7 inches of hair. We both love her new hair cut and how easy it is to brush and style. There is a lot less yelling and tears in this house now!
Brynlee had a follow-up at the cleft clinic at Children’s of Alabama. They were very happy with her progress. Her hearing checked out fine and her speech is in the normal range so we were released to only yearly visits. Yay! Our entire family has put in a lot of work to get us to this point in her journey and I’m so proud of everyone- especially Brynlee. We celebrated with lunch at The Cheesecake Factory which was a first for us. It happened to be right by LUSH so I also celebrated there, haha. The girls and I shopped at Target while Bryson and Justin hit up Academy for baseball gear. He had his first practice of the season that night. We ended the month by going out with family to Mater’s Pizza & Pasta Emporium. None of our 5 kids had ever been, but I’m pretty sure they all liked it. It should also be noted that I watched YouTube videos and after 27 years, I learned how to style my own hair. *high fives self*
Now here we are and it’s already the third month of the year. Baseball practices are in full swing. We’ll also begin our foster care training classes this month. Because we were provisionally licensed, we still have 30 hours of training to complete by July. Bryson, Bella, and Brynlee all had dentist appointments this week and there were no cavities. Brynlee sat in the chair like a big girl and never made a peep during her cleaning. When it came time for the dentist to simply look in her mouth, she pitched a pretty good fit. We all survived, thankfully!
I think that brings us all up to speed. This post ended up sitting in my drafts as well so I’m hitting publish because if I don’t do it now, I never will.
Your kiddos are growing up so quick. They’re still all adorable. That’s great that you stepped in and agreed to take in the two teens. I’ve never been on a cruise but would love to someday.
I love reading about my babies that aren’t babies any more
[…] we boarded the Carnival Sunshine with 5 kids ages 16, 15, 8, 6, 4 and set sail. Based on our cruise experience the previous December, we chose another 8 day itinerary only this time we added a port bringing our […]