Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Dottie's Big CVR Surgery

A week ago today, Dottie went into surgery to correct her Lambdoid Craniosynostosis

Craniosynostosis is a condition where one or more sutures of a baby's skull is partially or completely fused at birth. 

Dottie happened to have Lambdoid Craniosynostosis, which is the rarest type. Of course she's got to have the rarest of everything! That's our girl. My mama always said, "If you're going to do something, do it right!". I guess Dottie took that piece of wisdom seriously! 

During surgery, which is called Cranial Vault Reconstruction, or CVR for short - her head was cut in a zigzag from ear to ear (zigzag scars allow the hair to grow back in a normal pattern and cover the scar), and the fushion is broken. In Dottie's case, a dissolvable plate and rivets were put in to hold her skull in the correct shape until her bone heals in about 4-6 weeks. 

Surgery went fantastic, and our baby girl was moved to a regular room on the surgical floor only one day after surgery. 

She had surgery on Wednesday, August 12th and was home by Sunday, August 16th. So far recovery has been fairly easy, although nights are hard. We have her on only Tylenol during the day and two doses of hydrocodone during bed time, one dose every four hours. 

Hopefully her sleeping schedule will be back to normal the more she heals, but really only time will tell. 

We thank everyone for their thoughts, prayers, good vibes and well wishes. Our girl is on the other side and doing fantastic! 


Friday, August 14, 2015

Top 5 Tips For A Stress Free Hospital Stay

Since Dottie had major cranio surgery this past Wednesday, I thought I'd talk a little about having a stress free hospital stay, so here's my top 5 tips for a stress free hospital stay for you or your kiddo. 

Dottie with her Nana Kathy before surgery. 

1. Bring all of your meds. You'd be surprised how many times you will forget the dosage or name of your medicine, so just bring it all with you so the medic staff will have a clear idea of what your prescription and OTC needs are. 

2. If your kiddo is in the hospital, be sure and bring their favorite toy or blanket. This will go far in helping them to relax and feel more at home. 

3. Chargers, Chargers, Chargers. Bring them, bring extras and also grab your power bank if you have one. There are typically long hours of doing absolutely nothing in hospitals, so you want your iPad, cell phone or laptop to have plenty of power to get you through your stay. 

4. Advocate for yourself/loved one. If you're unsure as to what's happening or why you're receiving a specific medication, ask. You are your (and your kiddo's) best advocate. Ask, ask, ask and tell. You know yourself and your child better than anyone else, so speak up! 

5.  Locate and read your hospital resource guide if you have one. My daughter's looks like the picture below, and has saved me from asking a ton of basic questions like hour of the cafeteria, or where vending machines are located. 

With the tips listed above, I believe you will have a very successful and restful hospital stay. 
Dottie thinks so too! 

What are some of your best tips for having a pleasant hospital stay? 

 A special thanks to Dell Children's Medical Center in Austin, Texas for taking such good care of my Dottie girl! 


Saturday, August 8, 2015

Universal Orlando Resort Highlights!

Since it was our first visit to Universal Orlando Resort in Florida, I had no idea what to expect. I was pleased to find attractions and rides for every age range! 

Here are some of our highlights from outer day at Universal Orlando Resort. 

First was CityWalk, which is basically an outdoor mall, with tons of places to eat and shop. 

There's even a tattoo parlor, Hart & Huntington, where I got my Florida tattoo.

It's tradition to get a tattoo at every new state I visit, so Florida as no exception! 

Here's my lovely new palm tree, thanks to Ryan Eternal at Hart & Huntington. 

Besides the obvious (rollercoasters), one of the things I really loved about Universal Orlando, was all of the awesome photo-ops! 

Like these: 

These are just a few of the great pictures we took on our outting that day. 

There's still so much to share and show, so keep an eye out for my next post about our Florida adventure! 

What are some of your favorite things to do at theme parks?


Thursday, August 6, 2015

10 Universal Studios Essentials - Florida

Since I just came back from a wonderful visit to Florida, which included visiting Universal Studios with my mother and a toddler, I thought I would give you guys a list of the top 10 things that I found to be most useful to have to get the most out of your Universal Studios adventure.

1. A poncho. It rains a lot during the summer in Florida (I learned this the hard way). While Uni. Studios sells them in most gift shops for $8 for adults & $6 for kiddos, you can get them at Walmart for .89. 

2. A comfy stroller for baby/toddler. One that's a step above an umbrella stroller. Uni. Studios have strollers for rent, but they are all plastic and aren't very comfy for long periods of time. 

3. Sunscreen. It's hot and sunny in Florida, so use your sunscreen and don't forget to reapply often. 

4. Dry clothes. Either on a ride or when it's raining periodically, you will get wet. Bring something you can change into for the ride back to your hotel. 

5. Hand sanitizer. Rides and attractions are touched by thousands of people on any given day, so bring some to help stay fresh and clean. 

6. Tylenol or Asperin. The worst is getting a headache, so bring something to help just in case you do. You don't want your day ruined by something so easily cured! 

7. A backpack. No way you want to carry all of this in a small purse (plus souvineers) so be sure and bring a backpack that can hold everything. 

8. Ziplock baggies. These are great for those phones and wallets that you don't want to get wet while on rides or when it rains. 

9. A camera. I use my phone, but it's great to take a picture of where you park (we did this and it helped a lot) and a picture of your kids/other members in your party.  Just in case you get seperated, or the kids get lost. 

10. A good attitude. Let's face it, you're going to get tired and the babies are going to get tired. Take lots of breaks, keep snacks and plenty of water on you, and remember that you're there to have fun. 

What are some of your amusement park must haves? 


Monday, July 27, 2015

Florida or Bust! Pt 1

Last weekend Johnny and I had the pleasure of flying out to Florida with my mom and Johnny's Nana, Kathy.

It was Johnny's first flight ever, and both of our first trip to Florida. Nana Used to live in Florida about 35 years ago when she was pregnant with my older brother, and was very excited to show Johnny and myself around for the weekend.

Johnny did amazingly fantastic on the plane ride, and traveling with a two-year-old was way easier than I had ever anticipated it to be.

A huge thanks to United airlines for letting Johnny ride in my lap any time he was feeling a little anxious during any of our flights.

We stayed at the Doubletree by Hilton Hotel, only 2 miles from the Orlando international Airport. This was super convenient since we didn't have to worry about traffic on our way back out of town.
Part 2 of our Florida trip coming soon, there's just too much to talk about in one post! 

Part 2 will feature our first stop in Florida, Universal Studios

Where did you go on your summer vacation this year? 


My Littles

My Littles