Friday, October 26, 2012

Falling into February

It was early February 2012; my life was busy: my Master's certificate program had just started at Maryville University and I was also working frantically to complete my National Board certification.  Late one Wednesday afternoon, February 8th, I was sitting at a big round table in the Maryville University cafeteria, drinking a Diet Pepsi and waiting for my classes to start.  I pulled out my phone to kill some time and keep me company.  That's when I noticed that I had a message from the aftercare program at Willa's school.  Casually, I played the message and this is what I heard, "Willa fell on the playground and hurt her arm.  We think it's a good idea if you come and get her."  I returned her call, at which point she calmly repeated the same message.  Not thinking it was serious, and not wanting to miss one of my first classes, I called Bill.  He said that he received a similar message and was on his way to pick her up.  Class had no sooner started when Bill's text messages started rolling in.  "It might be serious." "I think it's broken."  "We're taking her to the emergency room."  "There's a lot of blood."  "Principal X is here with me."  "She might require surgery."  And, finally, "You better come to the hospital."

When I got to the hospital, I learned the extent of her injury: compound fracture - broken ulna, broken radius, severe bruising of the nerves.  Luckily, the growth plate was intact.  Surgery was necessary to repair the damage and insert flexible metal rods into both bones but it would have to wait until the morning.  Bill went home to pack a few things for Willa and get Basil, her beloved stuffed little bunny.  After surgery, Willa was in a big neon pink cast, which went from the mid-finger knuckles on her hand to her armpit.  Then, after a few weeks, she got a new neon pink cast, one that went from the upper knuckles to just over the elbow, which she wore for a few more weeks.  After a few weeks in that, Willa finally got a soft cast that she wore for a few more weeks until physical therapy started.  Finally, after 10 weeks of physical therapy we were done with doctors until the rods needed to be removed at the end of summer.  In September, just a little over a month ago, Willa went back into surgery and her doctor removed the rods.   

Willa's doing much better now, getting closer and closer to a full recovery.  She still has not regained all the feeling in her ring and pinky fingers but her doctor thinks that the feeling will return eventually and, of course, is hopeful that the scars will heal and fade over time.  I hope so.  It was miserable watching her having to go through this.
 February 8, 2012:  Willa and Bill in the Emergency Room at Children's Hospital.

 February 9, 2012: Willa and Basil - awaiting surgery with the arm newly splinted and wrapped in an Ace bandage.

 February 9, 2012: Willa - just out of surgery.

 September 14, 2012: Willa - ready for the 2nd surgery to remove the rods.

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Winter Wonderland

Winter is my reward for tolerating summer.  However, winter must have taken a vacation in 2011/2012 because it barely dipped below 60 degrees all season long.  So much for a winter wonderland.  Unseasonably warm or not, we kept up with our usual winter activities.  Here is a sampling of the things that we did last winter in and around St. Louis. 

 Family Fun Day at the St. Louis Art Museum.  This session, we made sculptures inspired by the architect Antoni Gaudi.

 Photo from the annual Orchid show at the Missouri Botanical Garden.

 Willa and her friend, Madison, at the St. Margaret of Scotland School Talent Show.  They sang "Tomorrow" from the musical Annie.

 Bill and Willa goofing around at the Wild Bird Sanctuary.

 Willa and cousins, Hannah (L) and Haleigh (R), at Wild Lights at the St. Louis Zoo. 

Will and Bill posing for a photo at the St. Louis Zoo Centennial Exhibit.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Remembering December 2011

Since it's been a million since I updated the blog regularly, my goal is to feature the highlights of each month.  I covered October last post.  Aside from Thanksgiving, which I have no photos of, and a school-related trip to the Gaylord Texas (YeeHaw!) not much else happened in November.  Oh, unless you count all the Christmas stuff that we started doing, which is pretty embarrassing to admit to so I'll just move on.
This is a Hipstamatic photo that I took on the day that we buried our super awesome, love-her-like-I-birthed-her dog, Grover.  She was 12.5 years and died on December 2.  Bill's parents farm in Warrenton, MO was her favorite place so it only made sense to bury her there.  As kinda obvious in the photo, it was a very somber day; the perfect kind for a lot of crying.
 
Tuckpointing was finally at the top of the "To Do" list so this is how our house looked for most of the month - covered in a big blue tarp.  Willa always enjoyed a modified game of parachute when we'd walk by to use the side entrance and the tarp was billowing.

 Willa also celebrated birthday number 7 on the 8th of December.  We learned about the "golden birthday" this year, which is when you turn the age of the date of your birthday.  I guess that means that Willa's golden birthday is a few months away.  Is there a special gift that one gets on their golden birthday?  Hope it's not gold.

Willa's witty repartee with Santa at the Galleria Mall.  Must of been a good conversation since he seems so interested.

And, finally, Christmas at Bapcia's, with Willa, Lauren, Joseph, and Andrew.  
  

Friday, September 28, 2012

Pumpkins!


Wow! How did it happen that I let a whole year go by without one single, little real post on this little blog?  Not sure.  But, to kick things off again here is a photo of the pumpkins that we carved last October.  I opted for monogram style, assuming that Willa would pick another style for hers.  Nope. She wanted a big ol' dubya (that would be 'W').   So we ended up with an H for the last name and a W for Willa's first name.  Maybe a little confusing from curbside.  Where's Bill's pumpkin though?
 Also, from last Halloween ..... Willa and Her Buddy (aka Grandpa)

Willa, as a Pirate, and Isa, as a Southern Belle, with a photo bomb by Prof. Severus Snape, also known as Bill.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Eckert's

It's that time of year again when we take our annual family trip to Eckert's! Although we neither picked apples (they wouldn't let us pick today for some reason) nor plucked pumpkins (ran out of steam by the end) we did ride all the rides and hit up the general store for all those yummy Eckert goodies.






Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Book Review: Summer Reading 2011

Normally, I like to whip up a personalized review for each book that I read. However, I've decided to skip the written review and use an asterisk rating system instead. Like the Goodreads star rating system, it goes like this:

5*'s = It was amazing
4*'s = I really liked it
3*'s = I liked it
2*'s = It was okay
1* = I didn't like it

1. The Zen of Zombie, Better Living Through the Undead by Scott Kenemore. Two*'s feels a little too generous but whatev.

2. Freedom by Jonathan Franzen. There were a few flaws but I'm still going to give it 5*'s.

3. Bossypants by Tina Fey. She is amazingly creative and funny but this book wasn't so 2*'s.

4. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling. 4*'s.

5. A History of the World in Six Glasses by Tom Standage. 4*'s.

6. NurtureShock, New Thinking About Children by Po Bronson. 4*'s. Interesting read.

7. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling. 4*'s.

8. An Exact Replica of a Figment of My Imagination by Elizabeth McCracken. 4*'s Mesmerizing memoir about loss.