Lazy T&R updates
Friday, June 25
  Adding to the entourage
Rachelle headed off up to Redding today to pick up yet another critter for the Lazy T&R this time its a pony for Ethan & Jamin. Right now I am listening to Chris LeDoux which sems incredibly appropriate. - before you start to wory I still don't like country - but I make exceptions for Chris coz he rocks (I know of no one else who can sincerely sing about tobacco chewing women!!) Hope you all have a good w/e.

Wednesday, June 16
If you loved watching Badgers try this


and here is the original badgers too

Badger Badger Badger

Oh BTW, yes we do have badgers in England.

and for the grand finale

Patrick Moore (for the non-english - he's a very famous astronomer in england who hosts his own tv show "the sky at night")

Patrick Moore

  Beat LA!

Yeah the Pistons won the NBA finals last night - not my first choice (which was the Sacramento Kings obviously) but Rachelle and I just didn't want LA to win (again) they spend way too much time thinking they are the best, and telling everyone so rather than working as a team and showing it in their play. I guess that is what comes of using actors ;-o as your big players. The only bad thing about it is I Kinda would have liked Karl Malone to get a championship, but I guess that is what happens when you sell your soul to the Lakers.

For those of you out of the loop on this the way it seemed to be was coming into the playoffs there were lakers fans, and everyone else were non-lakers fans. If your team didn't make it you pretty much ended up supporting anyone playing the lakers with "beat LA" probably being the most popular chant after "Defence".

  Emma's 2nd day
Emma spent the day with Rachelle after a long lie in, she got to go with the family to take Ethan to His first T-Ball (like baseball but no pitcher - the ball sits on the end of a stick) practice and then in the afternoon she went to tumble time gymnastics. This is all to get her prepared for the day when she becomes a surburban Mum :-). Just kidding I mentioned this to her and she backed away from that idea as fast as possible!! Today she is going to Tahoe with Rachelle (who gets to leave the boys with a friend - thanks Jenny!!). I will try and get her to write something to you all instead of me tonight.

Tuesday, June 15
  For those of you who don't know THIS is football

  Emma Arrived
Emma (Tim's cousin on his Mum's side) arrived today - She is staying with us for about a week mainly to recover from her world tour so far. I think she is really looking forward to plenty of sleep! I picked her up from the Amtrak station yesterday, I had dropped Stu off there, and so I knew exactly where it was downtown which made the pick up reasonably swift. When we got home we grilled her about her family - especially her sisters-in-law as we had no idea what they are like as we have yet to have the opportunity (money!!) to meet them. Emma lasted till about an hour after the boys went to bed - as like me she doesn't want to be accused of being a wuss and going to bed to early!! for those of you interested I will try and let you know what she is up to whilst she is with us. Mainly because I know that due to her lack of connectivity you are all feeling out oof the loop!

  Rebecca: Looks as good as new!
Hi, again.

Dan and Chrisy brought their girls with them for a visit yesterday [Sunday 6/13] afternoon. You can't tell by looking at Rebecca that she just spent a month in the hospital, and on a ventilator for 3 weeks! She looks as good as new--it's amazing! Her cries are picking up more volume now as her throat continues to heal. The lingering tell-tale cough, though more and more infrequent, is now the only obvious sign that Rebecca was sick with Pertussis. But, hey, don't just take my word for it--see for yourself. I've attached some pictures of both Charity and Rebecca taken only yesterday. You'll see what I mean. Enjoy!

Love, Sue

Friday, June 11
  Gmail Invitation Prices Crash
I have 2 invitations left if you would like one let me know - first come 1st served

Gmail Invitation Prices Crash

  Rebecca: Final Update!
--Rebecca was discharged from the hospital earlier this evening, and is now at home, sleeping in her own bed for the first time in 26 days!

--She still has her cough, though not as often, and not near as threatening. This will continue with less frequency and force until it has run it's course. (Remember, in China it is called The Hundred Day Cough!)

--Dan and Chrisy want to sincerely thank you for all your prayers for Rebecca and their family during this difficult time. It has meant so much.

--Please continue to pray for:
Rebecca's complete recovery
Charity, as she readjusts to life at home again
Chrisy, whose health is still under par

We rejoice in the miracle of healing which God has done in little Rebecca's body. We thank Him for His mercy and lovingkindness toward us.

[The attached photo of Rebecca is not new; it was taken before she became ill, and represents how well and happy Rebecca was just before she left the hospital. It's almost like she knew she was finally going home.]

Aunt Sue

Thursday, June 10
  Rebecca must eat her way out of hospital--
After another long and noisy night at the hospital, Rebecca is still improving. The doctor has put her up to a test: If, in the next 24 hours (Wednesday morning through Thursday morning), Rebecca can show that she is able to eat enough to sustain herself without the feeding tube, then she will be able to go home. Chrisy and I are convinced that Rebecca is ready; but her doctor still needs more proof. Rebecca must literally 'eat her way out' of the hospital! We hope and pray this will be her last night there. Chrisy plans to stay with Rebecca tonight (after all day). Please pray that she will not grow weary or discouraged; it has been such a long, hard, 3-and-a-half weeks.

Heading off to bed for some much needed sleep,
Yours very truly, Aunt Sue

P.S. By the way, Chrisy is feeling better, too--no more hives, and she is taking medicine to calm down the hayfever symptoms. Thanks for praying for her.

Wednesday, June 9
  A letter from Rebecca
Dear Family and Friends,

I am feeling much better. The doctor had me moved a couple of days ago from ICU to the regular Pediatric ward because I was doing so well. It's a little scary here--the nurses don't visit me very often--but my mom keeps me company during the day, and my gramma (Sue) is staying with me all night. Daddy and my other gramma also come visit me when they can. I sleep in a BIG metal crib, and since there is no one else assigned to my room, my gramma, Sue, gets to sleep in the big bed next to me. Unless I start coughing--then Gramma jumps out of bed to help me in case I spit up. I think the doctor might let me go home tomorrow; I'm eating on my own now (without the feeding tube) during the day, and all my vitals are staying where they should be. It will be so good to get back home with my family, and to sleep in my own bed again--you understand that feeling, I'm sure.

I wanted to send you a picture of me so you could see for yourself how good I feel. Thank you for all your prayers for me.

Love, Rebecca

Tuesday, June 8
  new pictures are up

  Dads and Kids Camp out
Last weekend Ethan & I went on the Dad's kids campout & boy did we have fun! By the time I got home on Friday afternoon Ethan had got himself all worked up and was ready to go to what he called "cowboy camp' - probably because that is what Andy goes to in the film Toy Story II. we went to a little place called Sugar pine point in west lake Tahoe. there were 108 of us there from the church with kids of all ages, although I think Ethan was one of the youngest.
Ethan spent most of his time riding his trike, or the one that he borrowed from the Wilsons.
Friday night we had a campfire & songs which at first he didn't want to go to, but after he realised that he knew all the songs he got way more into it.
Sat we had breakfast and games in the morning and then in the afternoon we went to the beach - which was nice and hot - but that lake Tahoe water was freezing!
Then in the evening we had a campfire again and after every song Ethan would jump up and say
"Yay Mr Phil"
and give Phil a big round of applause.
Sun morning was the best though as when he woke up (after a huge lie in) he lay there for a few moments and then gave me a huge grin and said without prompting
"Daddy I love you"
man talk about almost loosing it, that's the first time he's ever told me that, of course I get home and Rachelle tells me that he tells her it all the time, I guess he just doesn't love me as much - I must be a bad Dad then 5 minutes later after I have got him dressed he takes his first ever photo by himself.

we then had church which was done by Tom Tripp one of the Sunday school teachers, which he liked and actually paid attention pretty well. We then came home stopping on the way for lunch at Denny's with the Christiansens.

Monday, June 7
  Pray for Chrisy, too!
I think I mentioned that Chrisy came down with hives on Memorial Day morning. At that time, it looked a lot worse than it felt. However, a couple of days later, she found great difficulty sleeping due to extreme itching from head to toe. Benadryl has given some relief, and some additional sleep. A week later, Chrisy is still bothered by the hives and itching. Besides the possibility of stress causing the outbreak, she thinks it could also be a reaction to the antibiotics she is taking.

Chrisy is also being hit hard with hayfever right now, and a cough that just won't quit. (Could it be a mild case of Pertussis? You bet!) In spite of all this, she is spending long days at the hospital with Rebecca. Please remember Chrisy in your prayers, too.

Love, Sue

  Rebecca: Good News!
Good news! After 3 weeks in the hospital, Rebecca is ready to be moved from ICU to the regular Pediatric ward. They still want to keep her on a monitor to watch the 'numbers' but she is doing so much better.

Rebecca is experiencing some minor withdrawal symptoms--mostly irritability, as far as we can tell. She will squirm, trying to get comfortable, and cry the most pathetic little muffled cry (due to her sore throat from the breathing tube). Only a dose of methadone can calm her and help her sleep.

She had forgotten how to suck, but is doing pretty well with that now. Once she is 'eating' well, and everything else looks good, she will be able to go home. For now, someone is there to hold her most of her awake hours.

[24 hours later]

It is early afternoon, Monday (6/7), and I just returned from an 'all-nighter' at the hospital. Little did I know Rebecca would be moved out of ICU at 5am this morning, but in God's providence, someone was there to go with her. Now that Rebecca is in the Pediatric ward, she will have even less attention from medical staff. It could be a lonely, scary place for such a little child, but we will not leave her by herself. Please pray Rebecca will be well enough to go home very soon, for night watches can be difficult.

She still has the wretched (signature) cough--though not near as often--with some moderate vomiting now and then. But, through these episodes, her oxygen level stays up and she is able to get herself out of it without being 'bagged.' The doctor has ordered her feeding tube to be stopped for awhile now, to allow Rebecca to get hungry enough to begin eating again. If this goes well long enough, we should be able to kiss the hospital good-bye.

As you can see from the photo attachments, Rebecca is looking much better. You oughta see her now!

Thanks again for you love, your concern, and your prayers.

Love, Sue

Chrisy, Dan & Rebecca

Chrisy & Rebecca


Friday, June 4
  Rebecca: Doing better, but. . .
I just got back from the hospital--it's just after midnight, Friday morning. Rebecca seems to be doing better, and she is breathing well. All her 'numbers' on the monitor screen are staying where they should. The main problem she was still experiencing was the vomiting--with AND without the coughing. This made us wonder if there wasn't another reason, perhaps a reaction to a new medication or just a sensitive stomach. She has been taken off her (stomach tube) feedings for now, and is getting liquids through the I-V. Rebecca also got a dose of Phenergan to help combat any nausea she most likely is feeling. That seemed to help.

Another milestone: Chrisy and I had the wonderful experience of holding Rebecca in our arms (Thursday)--1st time in almost 3 weeks! She's still got all kinds of things attatched to her, so it made cuddling a little difficult, but a real pleasure, nonetheless. Rebecca seemed to appreciate being held, too. It was very sweet.

Chrisy had an allergic reaction to something Monday morning--resulting in a case of hives. Although it looked bad, she felt fine until Wednesday night. Then the itching was so intense that she couldn't sleep. But yesterday, after taking some Benadryl and feeling some relief, Chrisy was able to nap awhile. We have no idea where the hives came from. Please pray this will soon vanish, as well as her cold/cough which she has had for quite awhile.

I must get to bed before I fall asleep on the keyboard.
Your prayers are working; keep 'em up!

Thank you. Love, Sue

Thursday, June 3
  Rebecca: the latest 6/2
Yesterday [Tues.] Rebecca was awake a lot, due to a dramatic decrease in the sedatives she has been given. As long as she was still so sedated, she was unable to breathe much on her own above the ventilator, and it was time to get her off the machine. I began my 'shift' about 8pm, planning to stay awhile into the next nurses' shift change. Rebecca had her eyes open, looking around above her, for several hours before going back to sleep. It was during this time that the attatched photos were taken. You can imagine to joy to see her awake and responsive after more than 2 weeks of heavy sedation. However, as one of us would bend over her and talk to her, it was heartbreaking to see [too many times] her eyes get red, and watch a tear or 2 run down the side of her face while she lay quietly and almost motionless. We found it almost impossible to keep back our own tears.

The night was rough for her. She didn't sleep much; her coughing spells, though not near as often or as threatening, were still a serious concern, and she began vomiting again--something we hadn't seen since before she was admitted to the hospital. This is most likely due to the violent coughing action associated with this disease. The vomiting has continued periodically throughout today and this evening. The doctor has ordered a reduction in her 'feeding tube' volume to hopefully help with this.

Because Rebecca's oxygen and CO-2 levels looked good yesterday, and she was breathing above the ventilator at optimistic levels, the doctor decided to go ahead and remove her breathing tube mid-morning today. That went well, and Rebecca has been breathing entirely on her own ever since, with the exception of a little help from the nurses now and then during a difficult coughing episode. Thanks be to God for this extremely important and successful step on the road to recovery!

This morning's x-ray showed that Rebecca's lungs were clear of the sticky mucus from the pertussis and pneumonia infections. And the doctor gave a 'ballpark' estimate of 4-5 more days till Chrisy and Dan can take their darling baby home.

Please keep praying, and thanking God for His healing tough thus far.

Love, Sue

Tuesday, June 1
  Rebecca: New pictures taken on 5/25

One shows the 'blue bag' [at the left top of Rebecca's bed] which I have mentioned several times before

The other gives a more panoramic view of the bed, respirator, monitor, etc

We made the large photos of Rebecca (right) and Charity (left)--hanging over the top of the bed--so that all who entered would know what Rebecca looks like when healthy, and who her 'big sister' is. The nurses have expressed their gratitude for these pictures.

Love, Sue

  Rebecca: the latest 5/30/04
Dear friends and family,

I'm sorry you haven't heard from me in a few days; I spend quite some time writing an update Friday night, but before I sent it, I lost it. It was so late that I didn't have it in me to redo it at that time. Then yesterday (Saturday), I took care of Charity during the day and then spent several hours at the hospital in the late evening and early morning.

Anyhow, here's the latest:

Rebecca has been in the hospital for 2 weeks now, and on the ventilator all but a day and a half. She was just diagnosed with pneumonia, a secondary infection often a result of going on the ventilator. The symptoms are very similar to pertussis, and there is not much difference in the treatment. This infection does require a round of additional (and different) antibiotics, which general means a longer hospital stay. The doctor has ordered a reduction in the amount of morphine [for pain] and Adavan(sp?) [a sedative, I believe]. This is the beginning step to weaning Rebecca off the ventilator. The ventilator has been breathing for her, that her body might have the rest needed in order to heal. But she must be more awake to start breathing more on her own. At the same time, Rebecca is also receiving methadone to lesson the symptoms of morphine withdrawals. All this is done gradually and carefully to prevent Rebecca from having to be put back on the ventilator once she has her breathing tube removed.

Also, Friday morning the original breathing tube was replaced by a slightly larger [diameter] one. The nurses had been experiencing difficulty in bringing up Rebecca's saturation level [amount of oxygen in the blood] during the 'episodes' which required 'bagging' her. When the breathing tube was removed, it was found to be somewhat obstructed with dried, sticky mucus so characteristic of the disease. The larger tube should help prevent this from happening again.

Thank you so much for continuing to pray.

Love, Sue

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