Category Archives: Health


Okay, now that I’ve updated on birthdays, here’s the day to day stuff going on. Pictures and bullet points is all I’ve got for you. We met my Daddy for lunch and discussed important world issues like SEC Football…actually I think we may have discussed some politics, but you see how that stayed with me…I definitely remember talking about our possibilities of going to a national championship game.

We have still been doing therapy. We usually take one or two days of formal therapy off on the weekends. We just try to make it more of a life therapy those days…work it in where we can but spend more time as a family. This particular day we did babble and used the turkeys feathers as a “reward” after she repeated the correct phrase. (i.e. I say pa pa pa, and she has to repeat exactly “pa, pa, pa”)

JL had a feast at his school. His feast included rolled up lunch meat, chips and dip, and carrots.

Ella Kate crashed the feast. JL didn’t mind having her there.

Our friend who works for Robert Aderholt pulled some strings and got this sign put in our neighborhood 1 day after she asked for it. One day turnaround in city government!?! Yes, it can happen.

JL put this on in Target. I said, “Take that off! You don’t know who’s….wait, let me take a picture first…okay now take that off!” I feel like he was channelling his inner Cousin Eddie.

We went to Opp and back in less than a day for Thanksgiving. To say we are running on empty around here would be quite the understatement.

After Opp we welcomed some of our best friends from college for the weekend. We celebrate Thanksgiving together every year and we watch Thanksgiving episodes of Friends as part of our celebration. We call our get together “Truth Day.” Remember the episode where everyone is telling everyone else’s secrets and Ross screams, “It’s Thanksgiving, not TRUTH DAY!” Love it.

This is a picture of Michael teaching the kids some sort of English lesson. Caden was giving us homework while we were watching the Alabama vs. Auburn game. At this point we were ahead 49-0.
We had 1 cat. Cat #1 left. 2 weeks later we got cat #2. 2 weeks after that we found cat #1. We have 2 cats now.  I have recently discovered I am allergic.  Good times.

We had craft day at our house after Truth Day. Our Sunday School class came over and we made these little nativity scenes. Caden created a lego version.

A couple of years ago I bought a doll at the Dollar Tree and we made him baby Jesus. We swaddled him and the boys LOVED it! Now on Dec. 1 we get out baby Jesus and they kids take turns sleeping with him and carrying him around during the day. It’s just one more way we can drive home the point that Christmas is about the birth of Christ!

My super talented friend Rachel designed some short advent lessons and posted them on It has been so fantastic to have a SHORT advent lesson to do with the kids. They are so ADD when it comes to sitting down and learning as a family. With time I know it will get better, but now, 3-5 minutes is our max.

Also, Jeb and I have both had the flu. We both took tamilflu and were better within 2 days. It is a miracle drug! Jeb tested positive for flu A. I never got tested, but was having severe body aches. I started tamiflu and was significantly better after a day! We both had flu shots, so I think it lessened our symptoms and it wasn’t too bad. The flu is rampant around here. Jeb’s seeing 80 patients a day in Hartselle. He’s exhausted by the time he gets home…and so am I.


Last week was super busy, but fun.  Tuesday we met one of our friends from when we lived in Birmingham.  Her husband was in medical school with Jeb.  He couldn’t come with us because he had boards the next day.

Here are the kids ages…Caden, 6, Miller, 5, John Luke , 4, Tucker, 3, Ella Kate, 2, and Mallie, 2.  It was a fun lunch. :)  We miss them!  They’re headed to New Mexico for a year long fellowship.  We’re hoping to head out there to go skiing at some point.

Before we headed to lunch we had our normal therapy session.  It went well, but it’s always hard when all 5 of us are there.  :)  We had group therapy the next day.  I got a lot of ideas for some new things to do in home therapy with EK (drawing boo boos on the babies and then naming body parts for her to put band aids on, making experience books, and some new books to read).


I had a lot of help getting ready before we left for therapy.  Aren’t they precious?

Wednesday night JL decided he wanted to sleep in EK’s room, and Caden thought it would be a good idea as well.  They did really well.  Everyone slept all night, and when they got up the next morning they didn’t wake each other up…they came in one at a time as they woke up.  I guess it will be a fun treat for them every now and then.  :)

Thursday we took the kids to Huntsville.  We had to get ready for EK’s party on Saturday, we had family coming in Friday night, and we had our 1st 5K Saturday morning….BUSY!  Thursday afternoon Jeb performed a little eye “surgery” on me.  I had/have 3 glands on my eyelids that were stopped up.  They had formed these crystalized things in them and they HURT.  Jeb slit all 3 of them with a scalpel.  It did. not. feel. good.  I got the hard thing out of one of them, but I think he’s going to have to work on the other 2 some more.  Still using topical antibiotics and and anti-inflammatory drop in that eye.

Saturday we ran our 1st 5K!  It was great!  Jeb placed 1st in his age group, and 11th overall.  I placed 3rd in my age group, and 21st overall (out of 66).  I’m trying to get him to commit to training for the half marathon for me, but he hasn’t yet. :)

We had various family members filing in all day Saturday in preparation for our sweet girls party Saturday night.  That’s a post in itself though. The 4 boys had so much fun together.  EK enjoyed having extra kids around too, but she was in bed for this picture.  If you look at the clock you can see it was almost 10pm!  We had a lot of late nights.  Its tough to go to bed when  they’re having a blast with their cousins.




So, this is a day I don’t really care to remember because it was filled with vomit, lots of diarrhea, many changes of clothes, bleach, cleaner, and having to retrieve stool samples for the hospital.  However there were a one highlight of the day I wish to remember later.  

Today EK didn’t take much of a nap.  I was following her around while I was talking to my mom on the phone.  I lost her and went into the kids hallway.  I found her standing at the foot of the ladder going up to Caden’s bed just babbling to him.  He was sitting at the top of the ladder…he also didn’t take a nap…he said she was saying “bubba” to her.  :)  She walked around babbling all afternoon.  I didn’t understand most of it, but I am ecstatic that she was doing it!

She did start feeling better this afternoon.  The difference in her disposition between this morning and this afternoon was remarkable.  I appreciate all the prayers for us over the afternoon.  Jeb and I were supposed to be going to Nashville tomorrow for a long weekend including the U2 concert.  We went ahead and cancelled our room for tomorrow night since it looked like EK was probably still going to be sick.

JL is also doing great.  I have only given him 2 doses of meds today.  He has a lot more energy and plays more when he’s on his meds, but without them this afternoon it did allow him to rest more, which he needed.


I was thinking tonight how I should wait until a “normal” week to do my day in the life posts…but then I realized, this is normal.  There’s always going to be “something” going on…it may be VBS, or a tree falling on the house, or tonsils out, or rotovirus, or getting a new implant…but more often than not there’s always “something” going on here.

So, here’s our Tuesday…

John Luke came into our room around 6:30.  Jeb was already up because he was working in Gadsden today.  JL got in bed with me and fell back asleep.  At this point I should have gotten him up and given him medicine, but sleepy Jennifer talked mommy Jennifer into going back to sleep.  I got up at some point, I don’t even remember now because it all runs together.  I went into EK’s room to check on her.  She had another yucky diaper, so I took care of that.  Jeb kissed everyone and told them goodbye.  I don’t even remember if Caden was up at this point.  Once I finished with EK I hear JL crying in his room.  He’s in pain and trying to change his clothes.  I walk in and he says, “I’m sorry, but I peed on your bed.”  Alright curve balls, here we go.  I take JL and change his clothes, then I sit him in the recliner, get his meds, get him some coke, and talk him into taking his medicine (this is no easy task).  Then I strip the bed and throw the sheets in the washer.  At some point Jeb texts me to see if I was able to get the pee off of his side of the bed (where JL has peed…just thought I’d make that clear)…good thing he reminded me because I’d totally forgotten. During this time EK has had 4 yucky diapers (between 7 and 8 o’clock).  I get her an appointment at her pediatricians office this afternoon.  She is a yucky whiney mess, but JL has calmed down and is resting, so victory.  Caden is just normal.  Thank you Caden for being well.  Really, thank you.  Around this time grangran and grandaddy get here.  Praises and hallelujah for them coming today.  They COULD NOT have picked a better day to come help me!!  4 extra hands around here is a life saver.  We washed 3 loads of clothes, dried clothes, folded and put away clothes, ironed clothes, washed and put away dishes, I started packing for our trip, and tidied up.  We knocked it out and now I am exhausted.

Usually we let these viruses run their course, but I took EK to the dr. because we wanted to make sure we were doing everything in our power to knock this virus out…culturelle, yogurt, no milk, desitin, etc.  That’s all he said we could do.  If it doesn’t get better soon, we might do stool studies, but hopefully that will not be the case.  I am thinking both kids should be significantly better by Friday.

GG and GD left after EK and I got back from the doctor.  They did stay long enough for Caden to show them his VBS moves from all the songs he learned.  He was so proud and he definitely likes to show off.  He did each song twice with reckless abandon.

We didn’t go to kids night tonight because of the 2 recovering/sick munchkins.  That is the first time we haven’t gone in months!  Well, I did go pick up CFA, we just didn’t eat it there. :)

Once they left I cleaned up dinner, bathed EK, and got her dressed.  Caden decided he wanted a shower, so I told him to go for it.  Y’all, he bathed himself, got his towel, dried off, and went and got his pj’s on by him self!  He is growing up, and this mama is excited for the added help. :)  Now, I’m not sure how clean he got, but at least I know he attempted and water did touch his body.  That’s more than JL can say.  He slept through bath time and didn’t want to take one when he woke up.  He hasn’t had a bath since Thursday night.  I know, disgusting.  I didn’t realize it had been that long until I just typed it out.  Jeb got home at 7:15 and ate his chicken nuggets standing up while JL asked him to play imaginext with him.  They did that while I ran to the store to get more desitin for EK’s booty and some bananas to hopefully stop her up more.  I got home from the store and cleaned up all the little things that seem to scatter around the house throughout the day…and by clean I mean I either stacked them into a pile or threw them into a rubbermaid tub so I didn’t have to look at them.  Then Jeb put the boys went to bed and then I took my shower.  And there it is day 2…We’re about to watch a movie and call it a night.


I wasn’t able to get up to Huntsville to see my dad on Father’s Day, so I headed that way yesterday morning for a lunch date with him.  I took all the kids to school and got to have a nice lunch uninterrupted with my dad…I’m pretty sure that hasn’t happened since college.  In college I’d always come home for summer or holidays and I’d meet dad in the mall food court and we’d eat lunch and then do a “walkabout.”  A walkabout is where we walked a few laps around the mall chit chatting and people watching and such.  Those are some of my fond memories of daddy daughter time.  So, Wednesday we were able to eat at Cantina Laredo at Bridge Street and then do our traditional walkabout around Bridge Street.  Sweet memories.  :)  I headed that way around 9:30 that morning and got back into Cullman just in time to pick the kids up from school.  I may or may not have had a 30 minute diversion to Target after leaving dad.  They had Zhu Zhu Kung Zhu stuff 75% off and I needed a new dress….mainly because I own 1 nice dress and I feel the need to wear things other than sundresses to FBC…which is what I wore to NRC.

I brought the kids home and called our builder to see if he knew a good tree guy to take our beloved hickory off our house.  I got one guy to come right out and my insurance agent shot that price down and told me to get another estimate.  So, I called all 7 tree guys out of the phone book.  I had 4 come give me an estimate yesterday, plus the water meter man coming to see where we wanted our new water meter, plus the cable guy coming to fix our internet.  It was a flurry of activity around here.  Plus it was raining, and our neighbors blue heeler got out of his fence and jumping all over us muddy paws and all.  By the end of the day I had been told 4 different things by 4 different tree guys, but was more educated than ever about the tree removal process.  You can do cranes, scaffolding, or roping off…just FYI.  My insurance agent was being a little bit of a stickler about paying for the tree and what he would agree to pay for.  End of the day I went with the guy I was most comfortable using and changed my insurance to someone up here in Cullman.  Michael’s Tree Service should be arriving at our house in the morning with scaffolding in tow to get this tree down.  Amen.

This morning Dr. Woolley’s nurse called and said they had a cancellation for surgery tomorrow, and we could have their slot.  The idea was intriguing to me because poor little JL has ANOTHER ear infection right now and I am ready for him to feel better!  So, we scurried around and were able to change Jeb’s schedule so he could be off tomorrow, my mom’s taking the other 2 kids back with her to Huntsville tonight, my grandparents are watching the other 2 tomorrow, and mom and dad will be keeping them until Sunday.  I am so thankful we can get this surgery done before we go to Disney.  If you’re wondering what surgery it is, JL is having tubes in, and adenoids & tonsils out.  He has a 10 day recovery time, and then on day 11 we will be heading to Disney.  I would covet your prayers that his recovery will be great.  That he would have no complications.  That we would have no problems leaving on July 4 and he will be recovered well enough to have a great time at Disney.  He did tell me earlier this morning that his “tummy says it wants to go to to Disney.”  Hopefully that will be good incentive for him to stay inside and rest.

That’s what’s going on with us!  It’s just as lively as ever around here.  I’m coming to learn it always will be.  I’m also learning to be thankful in the trials.  I’ve read a couple of devotions just in the last couple of days about thanking God among the trials.  I should start that.  So far, I’ve been in survival and fix-it mode.  It’s a good thing God has promised he’s not through with me yet, because I’ve still got a lot to work on. :)  Hope you all are having a great week so far!  I’ll update after JL’s surgery tomorrow.


Today I took

JL and EK to Dr. Woolley’s for a recheck of EK’s ear infection and an initial visit for JL for fluid in his ears.  We got there at 845 and got settled.  We saw an old friend from medical school, Mallory and her sweet little girl Mallie.  So exciting to see them!  We eventually got called back….Ella Kate and “Jonathan Lucan.”  Then when I told her he went by John Luke, she spelled it Jon Luc.  John Luke, here is where I am publicly apologizing to you for naming you Jonathan Lucas and calling you John Luke and spelling it nothing like your actual name.  I’m sorry…not sorry enough to change it in the public records, but sorry nonetheless. :)  Anywho, we got that taken care of.  First, we weighed them.  JL came in at 38lbs.  EK at 25lbs.  Just so you know, Caden is at 45lbs.  His br

other who is 25 mo. younger than him is 8 lbs lighter than him.  JL’s ability to take on Caden is coming sooner rather than later.  After that JL had a hearing test.  He had a flat tympanogram in his left ear which tells us he has lots of fluid in that ear.  He had negative pressure in his right ear, which also tells us he had a little bit of fluid.  He did a booth test, and we found out he has a 45db loss in his left ear and a 25db loss in his right ear.  They also did a bone conduction which came back normal, so that leads us to believe his hearing loss is conductive, meaning it can be solved with tubes.  The bone conduction can mean that only one ear is normal because the bone conduction is going to pick up the good ear.  We are thinking both ears will be back to norm

al though once we get tubes.  When Jeb changed jobs JL still had tubes in his ears.  About a month after he changed JL’s tubes fell out.  We didn’t get COBRA for him because who knew he’d need surgery?  We assumed his ears would be just fine.  We got COBRA for EK because we didn’t know if she’d need another implant or not, but the boys are supposed to be our “healthy” ones!  So, today, we found out JL needs adenoids and tonsils out and to get a new set of tubes in. :(  And our insurance doesn’t cover any of it.  Oh well, it’s for his health, so we press on.  We are thankful Jeb can work a little extra and recoup some of the cost.  We scheduled his surgery for July.  Apparently the recuperation time after a tonsillectomy is 2 weeks.  He has to stay inside with no activity for 2 weeks.  That ought to be interesting.  He is my outside boy.  Always wants to be riding his big wheel, playing in the dirt, blowing bubbles, playing in the water, or whatever.  I can’t wait to see how much better he hears and feels after the surgery and recovery!  I hope it makes a world of difference.



Last weekend I was able to spend some time in Tuscaloosa, but I will have to blog about that another day.  It’s been a long day!  We were at Dr. Woolley’s office from 8:45 to noon.  By the end of the day I was worn completely out!