This Girl

This blog (& our life) has been so consumed with all things Carlee over the last few months that Lilly really hasn't gotten much screen time on this ol' blog, so today I'm going to do a little catch up on all of the wonderful things she's been up to.

(Our neighbor is learning photography and asked our kiddos to pose for some photos so he could practice his skills and he captured this adorable shot of Lilly. Isn't she a doll! I could just eat her up!)

Hmm, so where to start?  I guess I should begin with Lilly's greatest accomplishment. She's potty trained! Yay!
I was bound and determined to get her potty trained before we brought Carlee home from the hospital in January because I was not about to have two kiddos in diapers. So we hit it hard and she took right to it! As soon as I introduced her to undies, she wanted nothing more to do with diapers. Like all toddlers, she still has accidents every now and again, but she really has done so great!

Lilly love, love, LOVES singing The Wheels on the Bus, Finger Family, and the Put On Your Shoes song. Here's a cute video that I shared on Facebook of Lilly singing the Finger Family song with Mike.

She loves going on bike rides around our circle on daddy's handle bars:

For some reason Lilly occasionally roams the house at night, so we never quite know where we're going to find her in the morning. Sometimes we find her on the stairs, sometimes in Bryson's bed, on Bryson's floor, in our bed, on the floor next to our bed, etc.

I bought her some cute new bedding and that has helped her want to stay put in her bed a little better, but getting her to stay in her bed all night is still a work in progress.

Lilly absolutely adores Carlee and asks to hold her several times each day.

Lilly changes her clothes at least ten times a day. This is her modeling an outfit she put together wearing her swimsuit:
...and here's another cute one of her modeling our neighbor's sunglasses:

Bryson has started to tease Lilly like all good big brother's do, so I'm constantly getting serenaded by their bickering. It's awesome (yes, I'm being sarcastic). Anything Bryson has, she wants. Anything Bryson does, she wants to do as well. I've learned that the very best way to get her to eat her veggies, is to simply have Bryson eat his...haha!

As cute as she is, she very often looks like a little homeless child because she likes to pull her hair out after I fix it and change her clothes after I dress her.

I had my sis-in-law babysit her while I took Carlee to a doctor's appointment the other day and apparently they wore her right out because she fell asleep just like this at the counter after I brought her home:
A few other cute things about Lilly:
  • she loves to put the forks on the table at dinner time--but don't ask her to say the word fork because it comes out as FU**. She's still learning how to properly pronounce that word.
  • she loves the color pink
  • she loves to play cars
  • she loves to eat nuts--especially pistachios
  • she talks in a super quiet voice
  • she is the most polite little girl and never has to be reminded to say "thank you"
  • she LOVES to dance
  • she is completely terrified of car washes, having water poured over her head, and hair dryers
  • she calls pancakes "hickey who's" (sticky hands) because they give her sticky hands. She hates having sticky hands.
We love her to pieces and feel so blessed to have her in our family.

Favorite quote this week:
" A flower does not think of competing with the flower next to it. It just blooms."

Life rules!


6 Months Old

This sweet girl is 6 months old! She just started laughing, which has been so much fun. She can sit with support and her neck is really strong. She is constantly sucking on her hands and loves to follow us around the room with her eyes. Developmentally she is right on track based on her adjusted age. Growth wise, she's lagging a bit and hasn't been gaining weight quite as quickly as her GI doctor would like. She hasn't gained anything since last month and still weighs 10 pounds (FYI: this is what she weighed the last time she was weighed 2 weeks ago. She gets weighed at her pediatrician appointment tomorrow, so hopefully she's gained some by now).

Carlee is suppose to be eating every 3 hours (minus one night feeding) to help her intestines grow and adapt but lately she's only been eating about half as much as she usually does with each feed. After a few sips, she just pushes the bottle out of her mouth and acts totally disinterested. So they have given us something called Microlipids to add to each bottle, which will provide more calories with the little bit she is eating. The goal is to keep her progressing up the growth curve--however, if she consistently falls below where she should be (like she did this time), they may have to put her on a feeding tube. We are really praying she starts eating better so we don't have to deal with a feeding tube in a addition to TPN.
Carlee chillin in her car seat while waiting for her doctor to see her.

At her last clinic (this is what her monthly doctor visits are called) with her GI doctor and dietitian, they were really impressed that she hasn't had a line infection yet. Line infections are extremely dangerous but also very common in short gut babies. I asked her doctor if he's ever had a short gut patient not get a line infection and he said "no." It's not an "if" she gets a line infection, but a "when" type of thing. Sooner or later she will develop one, so they've trained us on the symptoms to watch for. We've been told that if she ever develops a fever at or above 100.5° that we need to rush her to the emergency room immediately. Line infections can be life-threatening and usually require an extended hospital stay, so we are just hoping to thwart off her first one as long as possible.

My sweet niece Zyan has been volunteering her time while she's been off track to hold and care for Carlee. Since bringing Carlee home, it's been really hard to keep up with the housework (I'm seriously considering hiring a maid), so having Zyan help out a few hours a week has been so wonderful and has allowed me to get caught up on some things around the house.


Carlee is considered immunocompromised, which means she is at a high risk of getting infections because of her central line. We have to be so, so careful to keep sick people away from her, which is why we rarely take Carlee anywhere. We only take her to Sacrament meeting on Sunday's, to her doctor appointments, and to an occasional family gathering, but that is about it. If you visit us and you are sick, this is what you get to look like...hehe.

And here's a little cell phone clip of our beautiful Carlee just chillin.

We love this precious angel so much! I say this all the time, but she is truly changing us for the better. Change is usually hard and we often resist it and fight against it. We have certainly done that through this life-altering experience, but in doing so, have also learned that shifting our perspective from the now to the eternal makes ALL the difference in the world! We feel so beyond blessed to have been chosen to help this amazing little fighter along her earthly journey.

Favorite quote this week:
"You can't change the direction of the wind, but you can adjust the sails to reach your destination." 

-Jimmy Dean

Life rules!


Eight is Great

This awesome kid turned eight years old on March 24th!  We just can't get enough of him. He has such a mature little spirit and is always keeping us in line. He just started cub scouts and loves it! He had a great well-child doctor visit and weighs 56 pounds (50%centile) and is 48 inches tall (17%centile). He's kind of a shorty, but totally owns it.

Here are 8 things you might not know about him:

1. He loves BBQ sauce! He puts it on just about everything.
2. He doesn't cry when he gets hurt...like ever! He only cries when he feels really sad about something (like when our exchange student left, or his grandparents dog died).
3. He can wear out the right knee of a new pair of jeans in a week.
4. He's kind of a germaphobe and won't share cups or utensils with other people.
5. He thinks Mike is really a kid that was teleported into an adult body (Bryson's very words).
6. He hasn't had a single cavity yet.
7. He can almost land a double front flip on the trampoline.
8. He loves to climb trees.

I tried to get him to pose for a cute photo and these are the poses I got...haha. Yes, he is definitely a typical 8-year-old.

We only do birthday parties around here on what we call the "big" birthday's (1, 5, 8, 12, 16, 18). The other birthday's we keep pretty low key. Bryson was SOOO excited it was a big birthday year so he could have his much anticipated party. He chose to have it at our house so he could invite more kids. He's so sweet and didn't want to leave any of his friends out. He had a Lego themed birthday party and got tons of Lego's, which he was thrilled with. Of course we had to do the spanking machine, a Hinckley family tradition.

We are so proud of Bryson for making the choice to be baptized. In our parenting we strive to follow the admonition of the prophet Joseph Smith when he said: "I teach them correct principles, and they govern themselves." We truly wanted baptism to be Bryson's choice, not ours. We've taught and prepared him but then left the choice to be baptized entirely up to him. He's been praying about it for quite some time and it touched my heart when he finally told me he felt it was something he needed to do.

Here's a copy of the baptism program (for records sake).

While we waited for Bryson to change his clothes after he was baptized, the Primary had everyone in the room write a letter to Bryson. That evening before going to bed, we sat with Bryson and read all of the letters with him. Man, talk about opening the flood gates. The letters were all so touching, but the letter that touched me the most was from his birth mom Kim. She talked about how the Holy Ghost helped her make the decision to place him for adoption and helped her know who she should pick to be his parents. We just love her so much for following her heart!

Here are a couple of shots of some of the people who came out to support him on his baptism day.
I'm telling you, Bryson is one lucky boy to have so many people to look up to. Each person in these pictures is an incredible example to him.

And here's our yearly video of Bryson talking about his life. We'll see how many more years he let's me do these...haha.
We love you to pieces Bryson!

Favorite quote this week:
"It is our choices...that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities."

J.K. Rowling

Life rules!

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