Sunday, May 31, 2009

Shots of First Birthday Party

We could not have asked for a better first birthday for Susannah. First of all, in the last two weeks it is apparent that she is feeling better than she has in months. Her appetite, energy level, physical strength and mood have all improved dramatically. She is even crawling a tiny bit though her favorite thing to do (as documented in these photos) is to walk while some poor sucker of an adult holds her under the arms.

We celebrated this big milestone in Chattanooga with nearly 40 (!) family members and a few friends. We gathered at her great aunt Corinne's new house on Lookout Mountain and toasted our big girl, whom we all obviously love to pieces.

Here's lil S watching Emma blow bubbles, another favorite activity.

Our friend Christie took all these gorgeous photos! Thanks Christie for giving us something does not require suitcase space!

Greeting guests with help from Grandma Moonpie

In the arms of great grandmother Mimi.

These next shots will give you some indication of the breadth and depth of Susannah's family. Here she is with Ben's mom's side of the family, the McDonalds and the Hennens.

These are some of my mom's family, the Collins.

And we have the Aplins, all Ben's dad side.

A cute pic with my dad and Shay Shay. (She was remarkably good-natured during these arrangements! Better than I was during photos for our wedding.)

Getting a kiss from my brother, her uncle Dakin.

First bite of a birthday cake, aka a chocolate vegan cupcake that Grandma Jill made especially for this no egg, milk, peanut or sesame girl.

Susannah gave a little speech before everyone sang Happy Birthday. It went a little something like this: aaaa hahaha eeeee!!!! Then she clapped for herself, and we joined her.

Thursday, May 28, 2009


We want everyone to know that she has been doing GREAT the last couple of weeks and has had a wonderful birthday morning so far. More photos to come after her birthday party extravaganza this afternoon....

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Eight Days Later

Susannah had the catheter removed Saturday and the drain from her incision was taken out yesterday. We celebrated her being apparatus-free with a trip to our favorite neighborhood hang-out. The Spanish bluebells are amazing this week.

Grampa Jim left for the airport today and Jill left yesterday. All three of us already miss having them around.

Anna and the gang met us at the BBG today. Here we see Saida running off with Susannah's Cheerios.

The betrothed.

Jill and S hanging out in Susannah's favorite windowsill. Thanks to Jill for all the great babysitting she did.

Susannah's new favorite place in the apt: the cabinet where we keep the tupperware.

Friday, May 8, 2009

We are Sleep-Deprived Zombie People

So it has been a rough week, as you all can imagine, but things are looking up. Our main problems right now are 1) the catheter that she has until tomorrow, which causes discomfort and painful bladder spasms that wake her up every hour or so at night and 2) the meds, which affect her appetite, which also affects sleep. So basically the Aplin family is a bunch of sleep-deprived zombie people.

Regardless of these difficulties, she is improving. We are glad that Grandparents Jim and Jill will be here tomorrow to help bounce the baby and maybe change a diaper here and there. Oh and Jill is a nurse so she will be the one who gets to take the catheter out tomorrow morning.

I think this face pretty much says it all.

Taking her meds...not her idea of a good time

That damned catheter, and the double diaper method

The Botanic Gardens today

Can you find the baby in the Cherry Blossoms?

We just wanted to let everyone know that we are home and doing well, even if extremely sleep-deprived. Thanks so much for all your emails, texts and voice messages. And a special shout-out to Grandma Moonpie, who was at the hospital helping out everyday. Couldn't have done it without her.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Over the Hump?

Today was hard. Yesterday's surgery was more complicated than we had imagined and Susannah is not recovering as quickly as she did after the first surgery in October. She has trouble sleeping because of pain, we assume, and she is on a lot of meds and generally not comfortable. Hospital noises and midnight blood pressure checks don't help either. Mom and dad are exhausted.

Nonetheless we feel like she is slowly feeling better and she has given us smiles and even a few laughs here and there. We are hoping that she gets some rest tonight and gets over the hard part. There is a chance that we will be discharged tomorrow, but of course you never know...

Thanks for all your messages and as soon as we can all get more than a couple hours sleep we'll fill you in with more details.

Friday, May 1, 2009


Yay! Susannah's urine was clean and we are definitely scheduled for surgery on Monday. The procedure is scheduled in the afternoon. We have been waiting for this day for so long, and it is very exciting and a little anxiety-provoking for it to be so near. It will be hard to go through the process of anesthesia and surgery and recovery again, but for the first time in many months I have the distinct feeling that our lives are about to get easier.

The cherry blossoms at the Garden are in full bloom this week -- a good omen. This time last year I was walking under these blossoms and afraid I'd be pregnant forever.