Saturday, March 29, 2008

More on Henna

I found many great sites online about the traditions and use of Henna.

If you are interested check out these sites:

Henna is a bit of a process, the paste is made from powder from a Henna plant and mixed to make it like a cream or paint. When it is applied it looks like paste or almost like puffy paint on the skin. After it dries on the skin the paste will start to flake and peel off. It leaves the dye behind on the skin. When it first flakes off the dye appears very light in color (kinda orange), but after 24 hours or so it darkens to the true Henna look. Here is a sequence of pictures of my belly:

Day 1
Applying Henna Paste

Letting Paste Dry

An hour or two later, after paste is flaked off (see how orange)

Day 2

Day 3
This one was taken outside in sunlight

This one taken inside with flash

More pictures from day one HERE

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Henna Belly Art From Hawaii

Right between the big pool and the beach here is a little tent where you can get manicures, pedicures, massages, hair braid or henna tattoos. I have a friend online who just recently took the most beautiful pregnant belly pictures and a few days before her sister did henna art on her belly, so i talked to the henna artist here and she was thrilled to do bellies! Its her favorite thing she said, just not often asked for here :-) Here are the photos of my Henna Belly:

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Wordless Wednesday - 28 weeks pregnant

~28 weeks pregnant and on vacation in Maui~

To view more wordless wednesday click here

Or to read or travel blog click here

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Now on Maui!

We've been on maui for a few days now and our travel blog continues at:

Here are a few of our favorite photos so far:

Thursday, March 20, 2008

We're here on Oahu!

To view more photos and our travel blog please visit:

Monday, March 17, 2008 myspace graphic comments
Hello Graphic Comments

OK! Officially turning off my computer to pack it in
dh's carry-on. Might not get turned back on till Wed.
in Honolulu. We have 6 suitcases in the truck, 6
carry-ons waiting by the door ... kids were all asleep
by 11pm, freshly showered and in the clothes they will
be traveling in. So they can get up, grab their carry
on bags and just get in the truck. We leave home at 6am!
If you think of us today please pray for travel
mercies, patience, kindness & some naps! Thanks!
We'll post some photos when we can.

Happy St. Patricks Day!!! (or packing day) - The place for profile layouts, flash generators, glitter graphics, backgrounds and codes - The place for profile layouts, flash generators, glitter graphics, backgrounds and codes

Hope everyone is having a blessed day! Over at our house we are renaming the day to Happy Packing Day! We fly to Hawaii tomorrow, so a little stress over here as we try to get all the suitcases ready, the fridge cleaned out, the laundry done, and some light cleaning...

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Blogger Friend School #18

For assignment #18 Nancy has asked us to "write something fun or just take a look back at our lives and what we wanted to do when we were so young! It'll be fun to read about what everyone thought they would be doing when they were young...did you ever think you'd be homeschooling? Add a verse to go with your assignment too please."
Well, I think at one time I swore I'd never have kids ... that seems comical now, because I can not even imagine my life with out my precious kiddos.

In elementary and Jr. High I dreamed a lot about being a pilot and working for NASA. I loved studying about planets and stars and space! I still do. A friend of mine and I attended Space Camp down in Huntsville Alabama twice (when we were in 6th grade and 8th grade, I think).

Over the years that dream gave way to Politics, Governments and stuff like that. My freshman year I was a Poli Sci major. And I still love that kind of stuff, too. But I could not imagine having to work in that world everyday. Somewhere during that year God did show me (or I finally listened long enough to hear), that his plan for me involved children and teaching. I changed my major to early childhood education and about 5 months later was in a car accident. I was taken to the emergency room, that is where we discovered I was pregnant with our first child. Can you imagine my poor hubby arriving at the ER, after being told his wife was in a car wreck. My first words to him: "Hi honey, I'm banged up a bit, but OK, they'll discharge me in a little while ... and half an hour ago in the process of a few blood tests they discovered I'm pregnant! Surprise! By the way, the officer on the scene thinks your truck is still drivable, just smashed in back"

Anyway, recovering from that accident kept me from attending that quarter of college, then morning sickness kept me from the next. And once I held that baby in my arms, well ... God's plan was obvious. I'm thrilled God saw the mother and homeschool teacher I could be. I remember the first homeschooling family we met, I was shocked that their kids did not "go" to school and I was sure I would NEVER do that! I think God must have a sense of humor.

For someone who said she'd never have children and then said she'd never homeschool ... here I am pregnant with baby #5 and we are not sure she'll be our last. And here we are in year 5 of homeschooling.

I used to joke that as soon as I had a "plan" or a "path" all figured out, God started throwing monkey wrenches into it :-) Now I realize that those things I had "all planned out" where things I planned without consulting Him, my creator, the One who knew what I was meant for, the one who knew why I was created in the first place. I was being a bit like a delicately hand made vase who insisted it was a kitchen knife. I just was not created for that. And it turns out when I live as I was created for I grow closer to my Creator ... what a wonderful life. Notice I said wonderful, not easy.

A few of the verses that God has used to teach me about this over the years:

Jeremiah 29:11-13
11 For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart."

Proverbs 19:21
Many are the plans in a man's heart,
but it is the LORD's purpose that prevails.

Philippians 1:6
being confident of this, that he who began a good work
in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

Acts 20:24:
However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace.

Proverbs 16:9
In his heart a man plans his course,
but the LORD determines his steps.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Haiku Friday

Please join us for more Haiku Friday

Haiku Friday

Answers escape me
The uncertainty scares me
I'd like some answers

Doctors and more tests
We just wait and wait to hear
Then ask more questions

I could let all this
Drive me to insanity
But I'll trust my God

I'll choose to walk on
To continue this journey
Even if unsure

I may not see far
Or know where, it all will end
God knows and He sees

I'm His creation
And so is this child I hold
We are His alone

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Thankful Thursday!

Iris hosts Thankful Thursday over at her blog. Which of corse we are all thankful for! This week she posted a verse on the Lord's provision and listed the provisions she is thankful for ... this made me think of our week and how wonderfully the Lord has provided for us. Even our struggles are His provisions as they stretch us and grow us into more of what He intends us to be.

“So Abraham called the name of that place, “The Lord will provide”; as it is said to this day, “On the mount of the Lord it shall be provided.””
~ Genesis 22:14 ESV

If you look at this post you'll know why we feel so blessed and provided for. We are so excited to welcome our new little girl in just over two months! And we are so blessed to be surrounded by loving friends and family and many prayer warriors.

But after my Dr. Appointment and ultrasound yesterday I came home and had a call from Dr. V, the Endocrinologist who saw our two year old 2 weeks ago. He was concerned about some of Z's blood test results. Z has had various symptoms from failure to thrive to diarrhea, to aches and pains over the last year. But again God has provided the right Drs. on the right days and we are so well cared for ... wonderful how God provides.

Dr. V had drawn and tested for two different growth hormone levels, one was only related to growth hormones and that one was within normal range, but the second one tested a combination of growth hormones and nutrition. That one was below normal, leading Dr.V to think Z is having more issues nutritionally than hormonally. Specifically not absorbing the nutrition in what he eats, becuase he eats pleanty. This was also confirmed by the fact that the blood test for vitamin D was quite below normal and his cholesterol is quiet below where a 2 year old's should be. All of these test results really mean that Z is malnourished. OK, that is a terrible thing for a mom to hear! It fits with his cycles of diarrhea, and it fits with his lack of growth (very minimal growth) since Dec. 2006. But we still have no answers to what is causing him to be malnourished. Dr. V also repeated the celiac blood panel and all those results came back normal this time (in Aug half of those were normal but half were not), so we will not repeat the upper GI and biopsy for celiac as we had planned to in April.

But he will be seeing Dr. B (Pediatric Dermatologist) and having a skin biopsy in April as he has very odd spots on his torso (started appearing the same time as his diarrhea problems back in Dec 2006) and those spots are now moving to his arms and neck. They are brownish pigmentation spots, start out kind of red and end up brown, then never do disappear, he just keeps getting more. Dr. B is not concerned about anything cancerous, but wants to run a few other tests on skin samples. I believe that malnutrition and malabsorbtion can cause skin pigmentation issues.

Also in April he has an appointment to see Dr. S, a pediatric orthopedic (same bone Dr. his big brother Gus goes to for bone cysts) because over the last few months Zeke has been complaining that his legs hurt, and just recently he points to his back and tells us it hurts. He will often say "carry me carry me" or "hold me hold me, this hurts" (and he points to his leg). Because its hard to tell if Z really means his leg hurts or his knee joints hurt the Dr. who called yesterday (the endocrinologist) was concerned that this could be a rhueumatological problem (as is rheumatoid arthritis), so he made a few calls and the next thing I knew we had an appointment to see Dr. L for 11:30 this morning! Funny how for some of these specialists we have to wait two months to see and for some we only wait a half a day. Anyway Dr. L was very nice and talked with us for quite a while and checked out Zeke, but she is pretty certain that this is not rheumalogical. His joints look just perfect. But she agrees that there are too many odd symptoms going on and thinks that we need to keep visiting the different specialists to figure out what is causing the leg pains, the spots, the malnutrition, the diarrhea and the lack of growth. She drew more blood (poor Zeke) and is looking for something that is specifically muscular now, if that turns up she'll send us to a specialist who deals with that. We should hear about that on Monday morning, but would not go see anyone till we get backfrom hawaii.

So at the moment Z's medical calendar looks like this:

In March we have seen:

Dr. V. - Pediatric Endocrinologist (first time we met him was
this month)
Dr. St. - Pediatric GI specialist (we've been dr-ing with him
since last summer)
Dr. L - Pediatric Rheumatologist (first time with her was today,
but probably no need to go back)

In April we will see:

Dr. S - Pediatric Orthopedic (first time weeing him with Zeke)
x-raying a two year old is never fun, please be in prayer for that for us

Dr. B - Pediatric Dermatologist for the skin biopsy

Dr. ? - Pediatric Eye Dr. (we've also noticed Zeke needing to squint
alot and even close one eye to focus on stuff - wether or not that is
related to all the other stuff we don't know but it needs to be
checked out too)

In May we will see:

Dr. V - endocrinology follow up, re-check Zeke's height and weight
again, repeat some of the blood work to see what, if any, changes
have happend, dicuss what else we can do or who else we can see.

Dr. St. - G.I. follow up, height and weight check and discuss why
Zeke continues to be "malnourished", discuss what cycles the
diarrhea has taken, what suppliments might help, and who else
he thinks we should go see.

And then we'll see mommy's Dr too because we are having this baby
in MAY! Unless we have any clear leads or significant information
we'll probably see no Drs in June because mom will still be on pain
meds and can't drive for several weeks after a c-section.

Please be in prayer for Z ... he really is not fond of Drs. anymore
and does not like when we arrive at clinics. He gets very whinny and
clingy as soon as he realizes we are in a waiting room. Poor kid,
I can't say I blame him, but I want to figure out whats going on in
that cute little body, so we continue to see Dr. after Dr. We are
thankful and greatful that Z does not seem to be in constant
discomfort, it comes and goes, also that the diarrhea comes and
goes in cycles, he seems to have a very good appetite and attitude
most days, he has continued to develop cognitally and verbally.
He loves to play and chatter, but we would like some answers soon.

We know how wonderfully God provides, we know that God loves Z
and God knit him together before he was even born, He knows all
about Z, so we trust that He will provide the answers. Thank you to
all who have been praying for him!

Sorry this got a bit lengthy but now I will
have everyone all caught up on Z news.

And I just realized that tomorrow, March 14th, is Z's half birthday ... my little guy is officially 2 1/2 tomorrow ... and isn't he cute!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

Here she is: Our Baby Girl at 26 weeks. Based on ultrasound measurments they tell us she is now 2lbs, and some ounces.

Here is her profile shot:

Here her hand is by her chin or mouth and she turned her head and smooshed her nose against my belly:

Here are her little feet pushing out on my belly (one is a bit blurry, but it is her feet) ... I just love baby feet!!!

And one shot of mommy's tummy:

To view who else has posted a Wordless Wednesday post or post one of your own click here

Saturday, March 08, 2008

O 's Birthday Party

O's birthday was last week, but today we had a party at Undwerwater Adventure Aquarium:

The Birthday Boy!

The kids who helped him celebrate

A visit from Sharky!

Z. just LOVED Sharky!

Sharky just loved the camera

It was a big year for Legos!

"I want the whole octopus on my plate" Owen tells his godmother who was cutting cake and in true godmother fashion she dished it up for him.

But then mom suggested he share with Daddy and Daddy's Daddy (Kids call him Papa Choo-Choo)

Mmmmm ... cake!

Check out the next post for who provided our entertainment!

And for entertainment at the party ...

And for entertainment at O's Underwater Aquarium Birthday Party ...

We watched Owen's other papa (Papa Ron) scuba dive!!! Yep! Thats my dad!

Click here to see the other party photos I posted in a previous post