Sunday, January 31, 2010

Kessler's Favorite Whiskey

What better way to stay warm on a cold, snowy day than with a smooth as silk American blend.

Monday, January 25, 2010

From The Bowels Of My Brain

Periodically I will post a batch of unrelated thoughts. I'm calling this "From The Bowels Of My Brain", which may not be accurate because the thoughts originated in my mind, but I like the alliteration and the fact that I can use the word "bowels" without talking about poop.Well, I just ruined that.

Here we go.

>> I was attracted to Walgreen's because of their $2.99 Milk sale. I spent $9.84. Drugstore sales work.

>> The vast majority of shoes sold in America are ugly.

>> I just realized recently that the sound of snapping your fingers comes, not from friction, but from your middle finger banging against the base of your thumb. Don't act like you've thought about that before. Or maybe I'm just dumb.

>> If we wash our bodies and our dishes with warm water, why don't we wash our teeth with it?

>> The ONLY thing you can talk about with a stranger on an elevator is the weather.

>> If I had a nickel for every time I've heard the phrase "Eight to fifteen inches of snow is expected in the Triad", I'd be five cents richer.

>> "Congratufreakinlations" autocompletes on my phone. Maybe I should come up with a better congratulatory phrase.

>> Brett Favre is 40.

>> It is not possible to not watch "The Fugitive" if you stumble upon it on TV.

>> One of the least fulfilling experiences a human can have: Holding back a sneeze.

>> One of the benefits of having a kid is that it gives you a chance to blog about something other than, "Today I stared at spreadsheets and PowerPoint Presentations while surrounded by gray fabric for 9 hours. Then I came home."

>> Babies are dumber than dogs. #fact

>> Never doubt meteorologists.

>> Eating ice cream with a fork is a better experience than eating it with a spoon.

Finally, I would like to dedicate this post to the first person who drank the white fluid that comes out of a cow's teat.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Sister On Haiti

Sister Abby with her boyfriend, Allan
My sister is a 2nd grade teacher in Copan Ruinas, Honduras. She walks through dirt (and mud) streets to school each morning. The power goes out in the whole town on a daily basis. Meat for sale sits on tables, uncovered, in the street. Many kids she interacts with have no toys, few clothes, and limited food options. Thus, she has a unique perspective on the disaster in Haiti.

She posted to her blog the other day about Haiti and I thought it was worth sharing here.


"...I just cannot imagine everything I know being taken from me, my family killed/injured, my home demolished, my city streets un-walkable, the hospital ruined, no power, no water….and the list continues. and I certainly cannot imagine a city/town having to recover from destruction like that, or the disease that is going to follow such a terrible disaster. I tried to imagine if something like that happened in Copan, what would the people do? It breaks my heart to think that the people in Haiti are similar to the people in Copan in terms of wealth, and just the devastation and long, long road that is ahead of them. I have questioned the Lord a lot this week on why this happened to Haiti? One of the poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere. They already had SO little…and why this now? It just doesn’t make sense. But today, I was journaling and the Lord just reminded me that He is exactly that…the Lord. and He is in control. He knows those people. He feels for those people. He loves those people so incredibly much..."

Monday, January 11, 2010

Kessler Is Home

WARNING: If you don't like to see pictures of babies hooked up to medical machines, then don't look below. (Ashley's note)

The last four days have taught us a lot and given us perspective as to just how blessed we are. When you first find out you're having a kid, everyone asks if you want a boy or a girl. The clich├ęd answer is, "So long as it's a healthy baby." I avoided saying that, though it was true. You envision your life with a baby and the baby growing just how you did and how a lot of others have. But you also realize that things don't always go how you envision them. We know several parents who've had children with debilitating ailments from skin disease to brain tumors. After these past four days, I can say, "I can imagine what that would be like," but that's all it would be, imagining. There was never really a moment where I thought there was a likely chance for long-term issues resulting from Kessler's sickness. For that, I'm thankful.

Last Sunday night, Kessler came down with a minor cold, or so we thought. He became more congested to the point he was having trouble breathing by Thursday night. Friday morning, we took him to the doc where his oxygen saturation was found to be low. Off to Baptist Hospital we went where they did a chest x-ray, a deep nasal suction, and a couple other tests. They said it was RSV, a respiratory infection that is risky for infants, and admitted Kessler for monitoring. Later that day, his breathing worsened and his oxygen saturation briefly dipped to 55%. A cannula was then placed in his nose to provide a steady stream of O2.

After a few apneic spells, the doctors thought it best for him to move to an area of more acute care where he could be monitored closely. This also would help a concerned mother rest more easily.
His thick congestion continued to make it difficult for him to breathe throughout the night. So much of the guy's energy had to be focused on breathing that he was unable to sleep or eat. To get him some energy, they had to start an IV in his little arm. You'll see the heavy duty wrap and medicine cup to keep him from ripping out the IV.

Friday night was his roughest night. He had trouble sleeping and didn't eat for almost 24 hours. As a parent, you're toeing the line of trusting God and worrying. I laid in the room the whole night, most of the time praying for him to calm and get some rest and for some of his congestion to clear. His stomach was empty. He was exhausted. Yet he couldn't rest, because he couldn't breathe. For a four or five hour stretch he would spit out his pacifier, cry, and fight to breathe through the thick mucous. I would get up and dip his pacifier in some sucrose and put it back in his mouth to soothe him. This worked for a bit until he got worked up again because of the congestion. Every 45 minutes the nurse would come in to deep suction his nose; running a plastic tube down each nostril to help clear the junk. Let's just say Kessler didn't like that too much. But, it helped. And gradually he got better. He got a little rest. We were able to hold him. Saturday, we moved to a regular Pediatric room. He was in better shape, but still needed oxygen and the IV and was still having trouble eating. Sunday came around. He rested more. He ate. He breathed. They stopped the deep suction. He ate some more. And slept some more. And breathed easier. And so did his parents. Around 6pm Sunday night, the feisty boy decided he didn't want the cannula in his nostrils any longer. So I watched his oxygen saturation level and it remained at 100%! He had no fever. He had turned the corner. Ash had stepped out to get a snack and I called her to celebrate. This was the best news we had gotten in quite some time, and somewhat unexpected as well.
The medical staff monitored him for another 18 hours and he maintained his solid vital stats. Now, we're home and he's gone from a taped-up, medicine-cup-on-hand, IV-in-vein, hard-to-breathe, uncomfortable little boy to a cute, colla-poppin' little boy more like the Kessler you see below.
Thank you for your prayers and concern. An easy-breathing Kessler just spent the last 2 hours asleep on my chest - one of the best feelings in the world.

Saturday, January 09, 2010

Unintentional Comedy

Some people love unintended comedy. It's not really my thing, but this is THE standard for unintended comedy. So, I had to share.

This scene is from a movie called "Undefeatable".

Gotta love the internet.

HT: The Cavin

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Picturing The Decade

The NY Times consistently delivers interesting graphics. You have to spend some time with them and this one is no exception. But imagine how many words it would take to communicate everything in this graphic.

It's fun to look through all this and remember the past decade.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Baby In A Commercialized Christmas-Related Outfit

It continues to strike me as odd how we put these little humans in outfits and take pictures of them like they're some exhibit. Maybe I'll get used to it someday.

But for now, I do think this pic of Kessler in a Christmas outfit is pretty darn cute.

More to come...

Monday, January 04, 2010

Willpower and New Year's Resolution(s)

Spreading resolutions out over time is the best approach.

Excerpt from a fascinating article on willpower and decision making:

"Willpower, like a bicep, can only exert itself so long before it gives out; it's an extremely limited mental resource.

Given its limitations, New Year's resolutions are exactly the wrong way to change our behavior. It makes no sense to try to quit smoking and lose weight at the same time, or to clean the apartment and give up wine in the same month. Instead, we should respect the feebleness of self-control, and spread our resolutions out over the entire year. Human routines are stubborn things, which helps explain why 88% of all resolutions end in failure, according to a 2007 survey of over 3,000 people conducted by the British psychologist Richard Wiseman. Bad habits are hard to break—and they're impossible to break if we try to break them all at once."

HT: Heath Brothers