Saturday, December 29, 2012

Surgery for Shannon

Swollen from all the air that was pumped into her during surgery.
I must admit, to write this, will raise a few questions of my parenting, but those who know Shannon, and me, unsympathetic me, will forgive and move on.  On December 12, Shannon had the usual winter time flu: vomiting and then the diarrhea for a day or so.  Not much eating was going on for Shannon at that time.  After that day, and for the next two weeks, she kept complaining about her stomach hurting.  I told her it was first, from her throwing up and then from having the 'runs' (sorry) and then probably tender from not eating and every other kind of 'mom' advice I could think of.  We would ask if she was having cramps and she wasn't sure if it was time for that and then we asked if she was having BM's and she wasn't, so then we told her she had constipation and that was causing all sorts of problems.  Finally, I took her in to see our family doctor and the she said to try fiber/juices/bran and if nothing else came to, um, pass, to take her to the emergency room.  During all this time, Shannon still had a few days left of school and I didn't want her missing them nor did I want her to miss her finals, so that was always a tension talk waiting to happen and happen it did.  Although she did go to school, 2 of those days were spent in the nurses office finishing finals.  I will say, looking back, that Shannon was not Shannon and she was in a lot of pain.  But I am a mom who says 'Buck it up' often.. Probably more than my kids wanted to hear.  On Christmas day Shan had put up a good front and seemed to have a good Christmas and later Jill told me Shannon was really crying and I said 'That's it! Get to the car!'  I even warned her that she would not complain once about what ever they might ask her to do....pee in a cup - do it with a smile - poop in a cup - smile again, enema - let me just roll over for you, etc.  So off we went.  It was about 4 o'clock on Christmas afternoon.  We waited a little bit in the ER waiting room and then ushered back to the observation room.  They took blood and made Shan pee in a cup (smiling the whole while)!  The tests came back fine.  No urinary tract infection, no kidney problems.  Nothing.  An ultra sound test revealed liquid in her uterus so they thought maybe a ovarian cyst had burst, but it shouldn't be causing her this much pain.  Finally a C-scan (?) was ordered and by 10:30 that night we found out her appendix had ruptured and she had a lot of infection pockets throughout her abdomen.  She would need surgery soon.  They were thinking of sending her to Carden's Children's Hospital, but they got a doctor to accept her case here at Gateway Banner and so her surgery was hopefully going to be at 8am in the morning.  Huh?  Ruptured appendix?  Emergency, right?  'Oh, lets wait another 9 hours to operate, she can handle it'. I was shocked.  Anyway, 8am came and went, 10:30 scheduled time came and went, possibly noon, um, no, it came and went, and finally at 2pm she was wheeled in to the OR.  The doctor had told us that morning it would probably take 30 minutes, or if worse case scenario happened, it would be 1 1/2 hours.  It ended up being over 3 hours.  Her small intestine had been 'compromised' and basically tattered from the poison and 6 inches needed to be removed.  Shannon had been a very sick young lady.  Most of the staff here have said how physically strong she must have been to put up with the pain.  I'm sure part of it was because she was afraid of her mom telling her to 'buck it up'.      

She had several of her friends come by and visit her the day after surgery.  She has been asked to walk everyday, but she WAY over did it here.  She was trying to be too strong around her friends and then paid for it later.  
Sweet flowers from her Grandma Hansen.  

Monday, December 24, 2012

Sampson's outfit.

I want to add another small post about our sweet Sampson.  When he passed away, one of the questions you have is what will he wear?  There is really not too many options for 'micro' preemies.  So, I knew we would work on an outfit.  The smallest patterns you can buy are for Barbie/Ken dolls and he, Sampson,  was a smidgen bigger than that, so I bought the next size up which was a 15" doll pattern and I had to cut it down quite a bit.  A challenge to say the least.   Here is the  finished product.  
The shoes were from a newborn shoe pattern found on the internet and I 'shrunk' it down about 4 times.  I didn't care for the finished neckline although on the baby it didn't look too bad. The buttons are actually from  card making crafts and are super tiny but they were the perfect size for the shirt and shoes. 
Also, one more addition.  The shirt ended up being a little small, so I quickly sewed a 1" addition 'flap' that Jonathan added on Sampson's shirt right before they closed the casket.     
 I finished it in a day and into the night and then Jill almost didn't want to use it to bury him in, so I did a second outfit that Jill and Jonathan could have one for themselves to save.

Add caption

 I finished it in a day and into the night and then Jill almost didn't want to use it to bury him in, so I did a second outfit that Jill and Jonathan could have one for themselves to save.

Jonathan is probably going to be mad that I put this picture on my blog, but I just wanted to show the size!

Inside I wanted to give Sampson a heart from me! (That's a heart button if you can't see it well).

And life has been going Vinnie!

Okay, now for my heart finds.......
I know you all wait with anticipation on what I have found for this week: so here, my friends,.....
These first two came from a TV weather report.  I love instant taping of shows because if I think I see a heart while watching a show I can just rewind it and look.  Sure enough, two on one screen! 

And this was a lime that Jill found in the fridge.

And lastly, although sad, was a bird that had been injured somehow, we think shot with a b-b gun, and couldn't fly anymore.  He hung around the outside of our house for a few days, pooping everywhere.
Jill found him floating in the pool later on.  How he got to the backyard is a mystery to us.  So, thank you Mr. Bird.  You will be famous on my wall or in my photo book forever for showing us your lovely heart nose.

Saturday, December 15, 2012


So much time has passed that I know I won't be able to remember LOTS of things that have been going on in the DeWitt household -but I'll try and remember some important stuff.   AND my Picasa picture storage, where I had many of my pictures saved, went kapootee on me and so now I will have to find my CD's and download my pictures from there.  
Yes, I know this was a month ago now, but, as you all know, Shannon and Allan were in the Mesa High play 'Oklahoma' and being a parent you are asked to help however you can.  Doug volunteered to help build some of the set and what he ended up with was this windmill.  Now this thing was to be 16 feet tall!  And able to be taken off and on stage quickly.  Doug made the fan blades and assembled them down at his work shop where they have tools that work with metal and the rest, well, it was built here in our driveway.  For many days, Doug and Jonathan worked at making some huge pillars (used in other parts of the play) and then this monstrous windmill. I screwed in one screw.  I'm sure the neighbors thought we might be digging for oil in our yard or trying to use the wind as our electrical sourse.  Doug also whipped up this ladder that attached to the windmill for one of the actors to climb on.  And to top it off, Doug hooked a motor to it so it would spin!!!  During most of the play it stands still, but in the dream scene it slowly spins and looks amazing.  For those of you who did NOT get a chance to see the play, it sounds as though it will be performed at the Mesa Arts Center in January!!  It isn't confirmed yet, because of licensing issues but be watching for more info!  

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Oklahoma Shout Out!!!

Wow!  What a busy time these past two weeks have been!  I am happy to announce that the Mesa High School play - "Oklahoma", has won State and will be performing at the Phoenix Civic Center on November 17th (Jill's birthday).  It will run two times in a row, the first at 1 pm and the second right behind it at 3:30, which seems impossible, only for the fact that when they put it on at Mesa High it went nearly 3 hours!  So, I'm guessing that there will not be the usual 10 minute intermission and that there will definitely be some 'cutting' of songs!  I hope it won't be Allan's, but it could be.  He still has a good part even with his song cut out.  I am attaching pictures that I found on Facebook ...I hope you can view them!  -Allan in one of his 3 totally hilarious outfits!  (Allan doing some funny face at the piano!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

back to spirit week......

Its been so long since I've posted - we have many things to touch on, but I will have to go a little bit at a time.  During the hard times with Sampson, Shannon and Allan still had life going on and I think we were in the middle of a Spirit Week. 

 I can't remember what day this was, but here they are.  I believe the theme was some kind of future thing.

And they also tried out for the Mesa High play 'Oklahoma', which both made!  Shannon is an ensemble person & a dancer in group 2.  Allan was lucky enough to get Ali Hakim - quite a great roll for Allan, and boy, is he fantastic!  His Persian accent is a riot and his timing is great - He makes us all laugh and not only that, but he kisses 'Ado Annie' each night that the play runs!  His first KISS!!!!!  Or kisses, I should say!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Sampson M Crockett

Today we will have a small service for our sweet Sampson M Crockett.  He was allowed to spend 2 days here on earth so we could fall in love with him completely.

Talking is Releasing

Go ahead and mention my child,
The one who died you know.
Don't worry about hurting me further,
The depth of my pain doesn't show.

Don't worry about making me cry.
I'm already crying inside.
Help me to heal by releasing
The tears that I try to hide.

I'm hurt when you just keep silent,
Pretending he didn't exist.
I'd rather you mention my child,
Knowing that he will be missed.

You asked me how I was doing.
I say "pretty good" or "fine."
But healing is something ongoing.
I feel it will take a lifetime.

Elizabeth Dent

My Mom is a Survivor

My mom is a survivor, or so I've heard it said.
But I can hear her crying when all others are in bed.

I watch her lay awake at night and go to hold her hand.
She doesn't know I'm with her to help her understand.

But like the sands upon a beach that never wash away...
I watch over my surviving mom who thinks of me each day.

She wears a smile for others, a smile of disguise.
But through Heaven's open door, I see tears flowing from her eyes.

My mom tries to cope with my death, to keep my memory alive.
But anyone who knows her, knows it's her way to survive.

As I watch over my surviving mom through Heaven's open door...
I try to tell her that Angels protect me forevermore.

I know that doesn't help her, or ease the burdens she bears.
So if you get a chance, call to her, and show her that you care.

For no matter what you think she feels,
my surviving mom has a broken heart that time won't ever heal.

~K. D'Ormeaux

When No Words Seem Appropriate

~I won't say, "I know how you feel"- because I don't. I've lost parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, friends, and pets, but I've never lost a child. So how can I say I know how you feel?

~I won't say, "You'll get over it"- because you won't. Life will have to go on. The washing, cooking, cleaning, the common routine. The chores will take your mind off your child, but the hurt will still be there.

~I won't say, "Your other children will comfort you"-because they may not. 

~I won't say, "Never mind, you're young enough to have another baby"- because that won't help. A new baby can not replace the child you lost. A new baby fills your hours, keeps you busy, gives you sleepless nights. But it will not replace the one you lost.

So what will I say?

~I will say, "I am here. I care. Anytime. Anywhere." I will talk about your child. We'll laugh about the good memories. I won't mind how long you grieve. I won't tell you to pull yourself together.

~No, I don't know how you feel- but with sharing, perhaps I will learn a little of what you are going through.

~And perhaps you'll feel comfortable with me and find your burden has eased. Try me.

Written by a pediatric nurse, as submitted to Ann Landers

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Baby Crockett...

Jill and Jonathan had an 'earlier than planned' birth of their baby boy.  Baby Crockett - yet to be named - came to earth on October 1, around 3 in the afternoon.  He is 3 1/2 month early and weighed 1 lb. 10 oz.  

 His hand is about as big as someones as your thumb to its first knuckle.  He will have a hard road to follow but we love him so much already.  Please pray for him and his mom and dad.  Sorry about the graphic picture, but that shows his size compared to the doctors hands.

Monday, October 1, 2012

 Homecoming is this Friday at Mesa High and as tradition will have it - School Spirit Week is here again.  I know you all look forward to this time of year when I post my kids' school spirit costumes.  Today, Monday, 5:30 am.  Why am I awake when the moon is out?

Disney Day.  We have for you Jack Sparrow, aka, Allan.  And little Alice in Wonderland is no other than Shannon.  Only 3 more years of this.  
Really?  How can Alice look good at 5am?
Okay, I think this will work.  Just a few minutes is all it took....
Stunt double or what?

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Laundry room, and more

Wow....nearly a whole month has passed by and I've been a lazy bum on my blogging.  But there are a lot of pictures today - I'll try to keep the 'diary' part short and sweet, however, some pic's will need an explanation.
Allan helping?......
Allan helping again?.....
Here's Allan!
First - my last blog (I think) told of the renovation taking place here at our home. We have since put up a new wall and installed my laundry room ironing board that flips out from the wall. While nailing the top of the new wall, we found a water line!  Oops!  We needed to repair that  before we could move on with the real work.

we had to add more work to fix a pipe!  bummer!
Tile next!  Along with the laundry room, we decided to tile the hallway.  I LOVE IT!  What I didn't like is that we didn't have enough of our left-over kitchen tile to do both things, so we had to find a similar tile (they no longer manufacture my kitchen tile) and we found a 'brother' tile in a slightly different shade.  SO, we have done my laundry room with the kitchen tile and we had to do a transition of some kind between the two and here is what we did.

Here is what Shannon's room is now looking like.  You can see the pink wall - that is where her closet ended and you can see we added around 22 inches.  There have been a few other mishaps that we have had to work around, but I think this weekend is a build the new closet walls weekend.  I'm crossing my fingers!  Jonathan, Jill's hubby, has been a great help in all the tile work, knocking down walls, redirecting duct work, etc.  And of course Vin had been right there with us.
the baby-to-be you see in the background is Baby Navy...Jason and Stacey's little girl coming in December!
During all this, Allan has earned his Life Scout.

I took a trip to Henderson to watch  three super fun grand kids!
We've had family get togethers.  I thought this was funny that all of our phones were sitting all in one pile as we were playing blind-mans-bluff.

Lastly, some hearts that I have found.  One is on the Camero car that we bought from Jason for Shannon to drive to school.  Peeling paint!  And the second is a quick shot of some trees that formed a heart.  I had to take it fast because the traffic light was about to change.  AND I was so far away from it, I wasn't even sure it would turn out, but did!
Some where down near Williams Field Road and Greenfield.