Wednesday, June 29

Ainsley's First 8 Months

We are realizing Ainsley is growing up too fast--we were just talking about that tonight, and Ryan surprised me with this video!

Wordless Wednesday...

Tuesday, June 28

Taco Tuesdays

Tuesdays we normally walk to our local Mexican restaurant for Taco Tuesdays (okay, not every Tuesday :). Here is Ainsley all ready for our walk--she was driving tonight!

On our way back home, we visited with the neighbors who have the cutest dog, Summit! Ainsley gets so excited when she sees him--she only pulled his hair once tonight, so that is big progress!

Stephanie's visit

Last night we got together with a good friend, Stephanie! Stephanie was in town visiting family/friends and we are glad we were able to re-connect! She is working at the same university as my sister in NY! Small world! We went to dinner and then out for ice cream at a local creamery! Ainsley enjoyed meeting Stephanie for the first time (and tasting the ice cream)!

Monday, June 27

Helping our neighbors

Ryan and I saw the semi trucks today with these flood barriers and we thought they were setting them up in town--looks like Iowa is actually sending them up north to help our neighbors. It is heartbreaking to see all of the flood pictures on the news--good to know others are reaching out to help!

Here is a news story from our local tv station--KCRG:
"IOWA CITY, Iowa - The University of Iowa diverted two truckloads of HESCO flood barriers, amounting to approximately 7,500 linear feet, on Friday to Minot, N.D. to help provide protection against the Souris River flood waters.

The UI was to receive the shipment from HESCO as part of a replacement for barriers the UI sent to Louisiana and western Iowa. The UI supplied nearly 5,400 linear feet of HESCO flood protection barriers to MidAmerican Energy in western Iowa earlier this month and about 11,800 feet of flood barriers to Louisiana in May."

Ready for fun!

Ryan and I took Ainsley to the doctor this morning and they said her lungs sound great! Thankfully she is on the mend--as we are ready for more fun and less doctor's apts this summer! Ainsley does have her helmet appointment this afternoon--hopefully she will get good news at that apt too!

Sunday, June 26

Ice cream!

Ainsley is feeling much better after resting this weekend--she took two naps with daddy yesterday! I think Ryan enjoyed catching up on sleep too!

And she split some ice cream with mommy last night--it was semi healthy sugar free moose tracks! She loved it!

Saturday, June 25

A first and hopefully last!

Our little miss had her first (and hopefully last) ER visit on Thursday night. We got a call late on Thursday afternoon from her teacher at daycare saying she was running a temp and coughing. We took her to quick care after work and they said she had bronchitis. They gave her an inhaler, baby z-pack and a steroid. The pharamist said she would be feeling better in no time. We got her home at 6:30 pm and gave her the meds and she got sick. Super sick--vomiting three times. We called the doctor and they said to let her rest and try again after she wakes up. We woke her up at 10 pm and tried the meds again. We knew her body needed them. She immediately got sick. We called the doctor again and while we were waiting for a call back her breathing began to become very rapid and she was so lethargic. We immediately drove her to the ER and while we were in the waiting room the doctor called back and recommend we come in--thankfully we were already there!

I was SO happy they got her right in--this is me, relieved to get her some help!

Ainsley's heart was racing and her pulse ox was in the low 90s. They did a chest x-ray and as Ryan and I were holding her for the x-ray, I prayed that God would take good care of her and heal her little body because she has been through too much for an 8 month old. Thankfully her lungs here clear. They said she was dehydrated from getting so sick after the meds. They got her hydrated--her heart then resumed back to normal. They have her some meds to make her more comfortable and we were able to take her home around 3:30 am.

We rested on Friday and today--and she has responded wonderfully to the baby z-pack (antibiotics). She has her fiestyness back--which we love. We are going to take it easy this weekend and keep the meds coming (we have a chart to help us track everything). Hopefully she'll be all better by Monday.

We are SO ready for everyone to be well so we can enjoy our first summer with Ainsley. This is a picture from today--can you see the sparkle is back in her eyes? We are so thankful for that!

Thursday, June 23

Cool weather= cardigans!

Today it is cooler in Iowa! 60-70 degrees, so I had to break out a fall cardigan for Ainsley. My sister always calls Ainsley my mini-me and I have to admit I wear my fair share of cardigans :)!

We had to take one picture with a bow!

Ready for school!

p.s. Thanks for all of your comments about Ainsley's memory box! My aunt and mom both were so good about writing my sister and I notes--and thankfully I've saved them. It has been good to read their notes from time to time. Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, June 22

Love notes to Ainsley

Our little miss didn't sleep well last night--so tonight she went to bed around 7 am. She was tired. I'm thinking she may wake up at midnight and be hungry! Since A went to bed early--Ryan and I are getting caught up on some work.

With my extra time tonight, I "made" some cookies for her teachers. These are "shout out" cookies--Ainsley's teachers are amazing, so they always deserve a shout out. I'm going to have to break down and actually bake tomorrow night--because her school has asked for cookies and snacks for this weekend's playground build so I'll break out the flour tomorrow night (or break and bake)!

Love notes to Ainsley....I have started a little memory box for Ainsley. I am going to fill it with notes--little everyday memories, advice from her mama, and encouraging notes.

I have to be honest this idea began this fall when I was so sick and thinking I wouldn't be around forever, so I wanted my Ainsley to have some advice and love notes from me. As I was driving to a doctors appointment in October I saw a student with something written on her sweatpants across her bottom and I thought..that is not flattering....I need to tell Ainsley that isn't the best look for a young lady!

Really, Michelle you might be saying? Yes--I just knew at that point, I had to get my advice, thoughts and love notes for A down on paper. So...several months later she now has a love notes box with a handful of notes already. They are not all about what "not" to wear, don't worry! She can read these over the years and when she heads off to college, I'll make sure she packs this with her :)!

Tuesday, June 21


I expect our little Ainsley will have her first tooth anyday now. She loves the teething rings I put in the freezer for her!

Hair dried, helmet back on and ready for bed....but still wide awake and giggling!

Monday, June 20

Baby pool

Waiting for mom to set up the pool!

Doesn't her hair look red here?

A little sleepy here!

Loving the water!

Sunday, June 19

Happy Father's Day!

Ainsley wants to wish her daddy a Happy Father's Day--she loves playing with daddy! He can always make her laugh!

I knew when I married Ryan that he would one day make a great dad. One thing that I love about him is how he has been Ainsley's strong support through all of her medical challenges.

Happy Father's Day to my dad--Bob!

Happy Father's Day to Ryan's dad--Larry!

Weekend fun--Love that smile!

We went to the farmer's market on Saturday morning with our neighbors--here is Ainsley on the drive. She loves these rings!

Her new capris--aren't these cute?

After the farmers market we went out for lunch and our sweet waitress brought some goodies for Ainsley to teeth on--she loved the cold orange slices and carrots!

Our girl has some strong legs!

Taking a break after some play time!

Thursday, June 16

Lunch date

I ran over to see this cutie on my lunch hour today! I have found a way to still use her bows even with the helmet! Ainsley is always so happy to see us when we visit for lunch!

A first

My dad and Vicki are visiting since Ryan is out of town at a conference this week. Last night we took Ainsley to the park for her first swing ride!

Loving it!

She liked to go fast!

A little tired from all of the swinging!

Hanging out in her crib while I ran her bath!

Bath time!

Sunday, June 12

8 months

Our little miss is 8 months old! Ainsley came down with pink eye on Thursday, so she stayed home from school on Friday and we've been giving her eye drops every 4 hours. Her eyes are looking 100% better--that medication works quick!

Ryan's parents came up to stay with Ainsley on Friday and it turned out to be a blessing because I was home sick Friday too. It turns out I had a bad ear infection that also caused an irritation in my throat and I lost my voice. After a Z-pack and lots of Theraflu (that stuff is amazing), I am feeling a little bit better and hope to be back at work tomorrow even if I don't fully have a voice!

This weekend since Ryan's parents were in town--Ryan and I were able to go into work to get caught up since this is a busy time for Ryan and I was out sick two days last week. Saturday we got a lot done and today we are back at work--I brought my lap top to Ryan's office today and am getting caught up on work email. We know our baby girl is well taken care of since her Grammie and Grandpa are looking after her.

Ainsley started wearing her helmet for 23+ hrs yesterday and today when we took it off to change her, she had a big red mark on the side of her face. Dr. Kris said this could happen and if it did, we were to leave it off until he could refine the fit--so she is helmet free today and thankfully we have a follow-up appointment tomorrow afternoon with Dr. Kris and hopefully he can make the fit a bit more comfortable for Ainsley.

Wednesday, June 8

Our trooper

I am so proud of Ainsley. She has done an amazing job adjusting to her helmet. Ryan & I are having more of a rough time with it. We just completed day #3 of her wearing schedule. Tomorrow (day 4) is wearing the helmet 6 hrs and then 1 hr off--repeat. This allows Ainsley to adjust to the heat of wearing it and the heaviness of it. The first couple of times I took off her helmet she was dripping wet :(.

This is a hard time of year to be wearing the helmet--but Ryan and I have talked about how we can make some adjustments to keep the helmet on Ainsley so she gets her treatment, but also we need to be mindful of how to keep our baby girl cool! Ainsley now gets a nightly bath and deep shampoo for her hair since she is SO hot with the helmet. She loves bath time!

Again, we are so thankful SHE is adjusting to this well. Ryan and I are going to stay strong and keep working toward the 23 hrs a day wearing schedule (which she'll start this weekend)! P.s. My diet coke challenge lasted a total of 17 hrs! Monday was a stressful day, so after we got the helmet--we headed to dinner and I ordered a big diet coke and I looked at Ryan and said "don't judge"-ha! I think 17 hrs is a good first step--maybe I'll start it again next week!

Monday, June 6

32 Years

Friday afternoon I went to a retirement party for Dicta who was celebrating 32 years at the university! They had a wonderful party planned for her with a video and a former student who she took the time to invest in and care for (10 years ago) who now works at the university. It was such an inspiring story and I know that she represented the hundreds of students that Dicta helped along the way. Ryan is stepping into Dicta's role and he has big shoes to fill! Dicta is an amazing person and we hope she enjoys retirement!!

This afternoon we take Ainsley in to get her helmet--lots more pictures to come. I put a BIG bow in her hair this morning since bows are going to have to be put on hold for a while and her teacher said I could always Velcro the bows to the outside of her helmet...hmmm.

Diet coke up-date--haven't had any since 10 pm last night--I'm hopeful, I normally have drank a 32 oz diet coke by this time in the morning and my mother-in-law said this weekend that she would join me for this challenge!!!

Friday, June 3

A quick up-date

This morning, we met with Ainsley's wonderful audiologist (Dr. Shea). We decided to wait until Ainsley's next sedated hearing test (late July)to see if she has the same or a more profound hearing loss before purchasing the hearing aid--this will allow Ainsley to get her helmet (on Monday) and then be fitted with the hearing aid in place. I always feel very stressed making these decisions because they are not black and white--always gray! What makes it better is GREAT professionals like Dr. Shea who help to walk us through the decision making process. Here is Ainsley with Shea this morning.

After Ainsley's appointment we took her back to day care and the baby room was empty! Come to find out they were on a walk. We met up with her class a few blocks away. It was fun to see Ainsley on her first stroller ride with her class.