Monday, September 27, 2010

Have I mentioned that Daniel has started solids?
We started him on 2 meals a day of baby oatmeal on Friday - and he's loving it! The only downside is that it seems to be creating a bit of a digestive log jam for him, poor little chap! As I type, he is sitting on my lap making effortful grunting noises, grimacing and farting audibly! Oh the joys of motherhood! Yesterday he made us all laugh at housegroup where, in a silent moment of prayer, Daniel let off the longest, loudest and most stinky flatulent episode I have ever witnessed! Brilliant! Ed was so proud!

As if he hasn't got enough to deal with, just look what I put him through earlier! He loved it!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

All you Freeway fans out there will be glad to hear that I have not completely stopped song-writing since becoming a Mum - Oh no! The creative juices are still flowing! Yesterday, I came up with this lyrical delight:

"I've got sick in my hair -
Daniel put it there.
I'm close to despair
Coz I've got sick in my hair"

Other ditties that get regularly sung around the Gilchrist house include:

"You're incredible, you're cheeks are edible"

"Somebody smells of poo (oh baby!), I think it might be you (oh baby!)"

Freeway boys - this gives you something to be working on while I'm away (!) - I think everyone will be feeling very excited about the new lyrical direction for the band in 2011!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

As you may remember, back in Feb Ed busted his shoulder in a snow-boarding accident... we were advised to wait and see whether he'd need surgery or not. Well, in the past few weeks, Ed decided that the limitations the injury were causing him were significant enough to warrant going under the knife and so he scheduled himself for surgery on Weds afternoon. It was his first time under general anaesthetic - and his first ever surgery!

Before he went in, Ed's main concern was that they'd wheel him into the wrong operating room and he'd end up being discharged having had a sex-change - you'll be glad to know that this did NOT happen! Phew! But they DID shave one side of his chest - so now the dilemma is whether we should shave the other side so he has symmetrical re-growth!

The operation went well and Ed now has 3 'dead-man's ligaments' holding his shoulder together! He is on some pretty ballsy pain-meds, so on Weds and Thursday he was completely out of it. Yesterday he managed to come for a walk and be up and about a bit, but he's still fairly spaced out - and still in quite a lot of pain - but he's doing OK and we're enjoying having a few days at home as a family.

Monday, September 20, 2010

We've just had a lovely family weekend together... I thought you might like to have a taste of what the weekend included for Daniel...

Although hiding our son in a box might look like child-abuse, we assure you, he smiled and giggled his way through the weekend - clearly loving having Mummy and Daddy all to himself!
Post-script from Ed:
Note that in each of these photos he is either in a new outfit, or in the bath. Explosive movements were, as ever, a theme of the weekend. Also, those blue dungarees... I used to wear those!!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

We got to take some pretty cute photos of our little man this week too... so here are a few just to keep you all happy!
Good morning blog fans! I know that you have had to cope with a severe post-famine over the past week or so... our apologies! You will be pleased to know that the reason for the lack of updates has NOT been due to any further Gilchrist tragedy (phew!), instead, to make a welcome change, we have been having just too much FUN to get round to sitting down to blog!

Let me fill you in on what we've been up to...

A week ago last Saturday we drove (with my parents) up to Lake Tahoe. We had booked a cabin which said it had 'lake views' - now, one sad consequence of the past year is that Ed and I have become slightly cautious about expecting things to go well, so, when we read 'Lake views' we envisaged that we might be able to glimpse the lake out of the bathroom window if we stood on the loo and leant out... BUT to our absolute delight and surprise the cabin FAR surpassed our expectations - we were literally separated from the lake only by a meadow - we could enjoy a gorgeous view of the lake and mountains from our sitting room, our bedroom and decking area AND (most importantly) from the HOT tub! To top it all off, there was also a giant moose-head stuck on the wall over the fireplace - BRILLIANT!

It was a magical week - lazy days by the beach, a lunch cruise to Emerald bay, awesome walks in desolation wilderness and by the lake, hot tubs, the US open tennis, bottles of wine on the beach watching the sun set, happy cuddles with Daniel, golf, fantastic BBQ meals and lots of great conversations and happy family times together... it really could not have been better! My parents even saw a BEAR one night from their bedroom window! How exciting!

The only slight sadness was that Daniel started teething while we were away, which meant that he was a bit more demanding than usual because he was in pain - but even that was special, because it meant he needed more cuddles - and one thing grand-parents seem MORE than happy to do is CUDDLE their grandson! So it was win-win!

We got home on Saturday evening in time for Daniel's dedication service in Sunday morning. Because of the teething, we were a bit anxious that Daniel might scream the entire way through - but he was as good as gold throughout - the only thing that made us giggle was that just before the dedication was about to happen, in the quiet moment as Mark (the lead pastor) was going up to the front there was an almighty audible explosion in Daniel's nether regions! The people in the rows around us ALL heard it and were laughing - there was nothing we could do - Daniel was dedicated with a nappy FULL of poo! What a relief that it stayed IN the nappy and didn't end up all over Mark! Can you imagine?!!!

It was a very special occasion. Mark mentioned a bit about the start that Daniel has had in life and what we've been through and then prayed for us and Daniel. At one point Mark said that Daniel is a 'miracle baby' - and Ed, in a lion-king-esque moment, lifted Daniel up above his head for everyone to see - the entire church cheered - it was very special... we can't quite believe the love and support we have been shown by our brothers and sisters in Christ out here - is really has been overwhelming and a huge example of the miraculous love that God gives His people...

On Sunday afternoon there was the annual 'NICU graduates' party at Stanford hospital - a lovely opportunity to go back and see many of the doctors and nurses who cared for Daniel during his first 3 1/2 months in hospital. Everyone was amazed at how chubby, smiley and healthy Daniel is! One real highlight for Daniel was having a cuddle with Julianna - his primary (and favorite!) nurse from the NICU - we can't be sure that he does remember her, but he certainly seemed happy to see her!

To top off an overwhelmingly happy day, we all went out for a really happy dinner on Sunday evening. As we were getting ready to go out I found myself humming the song 'He's turned my mourning into dancing again, He's lifted my sorrow...' - it really felt as though the week in Tahoe and then the celebrations of Sunday were a 'full-stop' to the suffering we have had to walk through... I may be wrong and I will trust Him if there is more sadness to come, but I pray that we can now have some months tragedy-free to enjoy our wonderful son!

Mum and Dad went home yesterday and the house feels very empty today without them here. They have both been so generous and giving in dropping everything to care for us - it will be good to have time just as the 3 of us again, but we are missing having them here!

The summer break is now over and things are starting up again at church this week. I have agreed to be a women's bible study leader on Wednesday evenings and last night was the first meeting - Wednesday nights will be 'Daddy-date-night' - although, by the slightly frazzled expression on Ed's face when I walked through the door last night, the evening had not quite turned out as he had hoped! We pray that Daniel learns to be more settled in the evenings soon! I am really excited to be having the opportunity to lead a group of women in bible study - it feels 'right' to be serving others after all that I have received in the past months...

Ed and I are also doing a 10 week 'biblical counselling' course on Monday nights - we are bringing Daniel along and the idea is that he will sleep through it - that didn't quite happen last Monday - although he DID stay quiet - we'll have to see whether that is feasible long term or not! If he starts to be disruptive we'll do a re-think!

The only other things we've got on are that Ed is meeting with some other guys every other Thursday evening for bible-study and prayer in a local bar and we're probably going to go to a local church fellowship group that meets once a month on Sunday afternoon... all that might seem a lot, but we're excited about it all and (don't worry!), if it feels too much, I can always strip things back and only do the women's bible study... it just feels great to be actually able to get involved at last!

Phew! I think that's all the updates for now! We hope you're all doing well! We love you all HEAPS!!!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Oh yikes! I have just realised that I have not told you about last weekend - when Ed and I celebrated our 12th wedding anniversary!

Before we left to come out to California, our dear (and hugely generous) friends from our church back home in Arborfield gave us a gift of money that we were instructed to use for something fun... well, the opportunities for 'fun' have been few and far between over the past year or so, so we thought it was about time we cashed in on our fun fund! Ed booked us onto a dinner cruise in San Fransisco bay - it was fantastic - beautiful views of the bay, Alcatraz and the city, delicious cuisine and live music AND dancing! After our last attempt at a date night (!), we decided to take Daniel with us - which was absolutely lovely. He was really well-behaved and it felt right to be celebrating our wedding anniversary with our son for the first time. While all the other couples were slow dancing together, Ed, Daniel and I were dancing as a threesome! Such fun!

So a HUGE 'THANK YOU' to all of our lovely friends back home who contributed towards the generous gift that enabled us to enjoy such a treat evening as a family! We love you all and we miss you like crazy!
Having my parents out here with us is SUCH a joy! Dad arrived on Wednesday and there is a sense of completeness now that Daniel has met all his living grandparents. Dad and Daniel hit it off straight away and have been enjoying cuddles ever since!

I realised that I have been remiss at updating our faithful blog followers on some things - so let me amend my ways and fill you in on the latest...


It has been confirmed that I am type 1. Day-to-day I am coping pretty well and the specialist I am seeing is really pleased with how quickly we have managed to get my sugars under control. I have the occasional 'hypo', which is not very nice - but thankfully I am recognising and treating them before I go too low.


Sleeping through the night that one time was obviously a freak accident - he has not done it since! Oh well, it is encouraging to know he CAN sleep through and, in faith, we believe he WILL sleep through consistently one day! Our little man continues to thrive - he is completely off oxygen and is passing every medical investigation (his 6 month check up/audiology/respiratory etc) with flying colours! Wahooooooooooooooooo! Yesterday he giggled for the first time - a sudden gurgling, uninhibited expression of sheer joy that brought tears to my eyes! As a silly Mother, I frantically tried to re-create the exact circumstances that had lead to the giggle, but, despite my best efforts, it was a one-off... we are hoping that, just like sleeping through the night, these one-offs will become more a part of life!

Tomorrow we are heading off to Lake Tahoe for a week, so we will be off-line until next weekend. We are hoping for a relaxing week filled with natural beauty and fun-time together... We get back on Saturday and then, on Sunday Daniel is getting dedicated at church (for the un-churched, that just means we get up the front and the church officially 'welcomes' him into the family and we say publicly that we want to bring him up to know and love Jesus). We are thrilled that Mum and Dad will be here to share that special occasion with us - every day I thank God for my miracle son, who really, by human standards, should never have made it!