Archive for the 'Nora Tidbits' Category

Love is in the air!

February 14th, 2008


Nora played cupid for her first Valentine’s Day………


“What is this thing on my head?”



humm, I think I’ll take it off and investigate…..


and don’t dare put it back on!


ah, that’s better!


Now it’s time for our little angel to take a rest…….playing cupid sure takes a lot of energy. :)

For those of you who don’t already know, Nora really did play cupid for her grandmother NeeNee (Sarah’s mom). At TMH where Nora was born and in the NICU for the first 6 1/2 weeks of her life, every visitor has to check in at a security desk to go up to the baby floor. NeeNee was up to visit Nora almost every single day while she was in the NICU. During these many visits back and forth to TMH my mom developed a friendship with one of the guards, Don Oakes. My mom has been single for 27 years and is now engaged to be married to Don this summer. Here’s Nora checking out the ring last fall when they told us of the big event to come.


Congratulations NeeNee! Nora loves you!


So Long and Thanks for All the Fish! (and MUCH, MUCH more!)

February 11th, 2008

On Saturday morning my grandfather (DaddyTom) went to heaven. He will be missed greatly but I know he is now in a better place, looking down upon us all, and smiling.

As a child I spent most of my weekends and summers at my grandparents house, in Quincy, about 20 minutes away. Most of my time was spent fishing (and hunting in the winters) with DaddyTom. DaddyTom lived a very clean and wholesome life but had one addiction, and fishing was it.

From the time I was young, up until he physically could not do it anymore, DaddyTom fished twice a day, 6 days a week, taking only Sunday’s off and I was there to go with him as often as I could be. If you asked my parents back then they would of said I was gone waaaayyyy to much. I am sure my folks would of liked me home more but its kind of hard to compete with all day fishing with an expert fisherman, a swimming pool and a bunch of fun cousins and friends….and of course a #1 Grandmother (MammaTom), so of course I was there as much as I could be.

Most of our time fishing was spent slow drifting and hunting for the big bass and talking about pretty much anything. I think those were some of the happiest times in my life so far. I learned all about his life and he taught me many, many things. I attribute a lot of who I am today to the time I spent with him and I know he was proud to be able to be such a big part of my life. He was not only my grandfather and my fishing partner but he was my best friend.

As I am writing this I have begun to think how much of my life has been surrounded by fish and how they have always been such a positive part of my life. Now with DaddyTom gone in body (his spirit will be with me forever) I am now “fishing” every day with Nora and her Omegaven. Although with the Omegaven it seems like we are ALWAYS having a great day and catching our limit. It is hard losing him but I feel so fortunate to have known him so well and to have been given so much time with him over the years that it has made letting him go easier. My only regret is that he did not get to spend more time with Nora but I know he now gets to watch over her all the time from Heaven which makes me feel more secure than I have felt in a long time. I always knew Nora had a Guardian Angel but now she has two!

We love you DaddyTom and you will be with us in spirit forever. I will forever cherish all the time we had on Earth together and I look forward being with you again one day. I am sure the next time we meet you will have already found the best fishing holes in Heaven. Till then…..Fish on!

DaddyTom and Nora

Obituary for Howard E. Thomas


Howard Edge Thomas, 88, died Saturday, February 9th, at his home in Quincy.

Mr. Thomas was born in Martin, Georgia, and moved to Quincy with his wife, Evelyn Jarrard Thomas, in 1946. He worked in the automobile business and eventually established Thomas Motor Cars, Inc. He was a deacon and active member of the First Baptist Church, Quincy.

Mr. Thomas is survived by his wife and their children Brenda Thomas Patterson and her husband John of Yulee, Florida, Bruce Thomas and his wife Chris of Quincy, and Jody Thomas and his wife LoraLee of Tallahassee; seven grandchildren, and six great grandchildren. He is also survived by his sisters Helen Crone of Dunellen, Florida, Hazel Daniel of Lawrenceville, Georgia, and Hilda Herbert of Ocala, Florida. He was preceded in death by his brother Hugh Thomas and his sister Harriet Robinson.

A memorial service will be held on Tuesday, February 12th, at 11am at the First Baptist Church in Quincy. Friends are invited to visit with the family from 10-11am in the church’s fellowship hall.

The family requests that, in lieu of flowers, donations be sent to the First Baptist Church, 210 W. Washington St., Quincy 32351 or to Big Bend Hospice, 1723 Mahan Center Blvd, Tallahassee, Florida 32308.


Bye Bye Button!

January 30th, 2008

Nora had her g-tube button removed a week ago yesterday. Wow, I never thought we’d be saying that before her first birthday or any birthday for that matter. She is doing great and the hole in her tummy is healing amazingly well. The actual removal of the button wasn’t very fun for sweet Nora (because she had a Bard button that is kind of like an anchor instead of a catheter) but she was sore for only about a day and a half and her tummy is obviously feeling better than ever. She has never slept on her tummy but the past two mornings we’ve awoken to find her snoozing away on her tum-tum. It’s still crazy to me that they just pull the button out and don’t put any stitches or anything to close the hole going from her skin straight into her stomach. Apparently the stomach heals very quickly and only 15% of people have to go back for a procedure to close it if it hasn’t closed by itself after 6-8 weeks. The hole is still leaking a bit but the leakage is minimal and we’ve only had to keep a bandaid on it the past few days instead of gauze.

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Nora had quite a time playing with the table paper and checking out the digestive system charts in Dr. Crooms office while we were waiting for him to come in and take out her button.

We are very excited about Nora’s progress with oral feedings and weight gain! Her little intestine must be growing, adapting, or both because something amazing certainly has happened for her to be able to process so much orally. She’s eating 106ml bottles of her Elecare formula about every 2 hours and eating her solids twice a day, which we will be moving up to 3 times a day starting today. She’s still loving her squash and rice. She’s had butternut and delicata squash, and sweet white rice and short grain brown rice. I’ve been a little hesitant to move on to the next veggie, sweet potato, just because of the gas factor. But we’re going to go for it today!

The solids have definitely made a noticeable difference in her weight, last week she was up to 15lb 7oz (a 8 oz gain from the previous week) and this week she’s an even 16lbs! So now the next step is to start tapering down her TPN. Her doc has given to green light to lower her rate per hour, she’s currently at 20ml/hr and we’ll drop 2ml at a time every few days as long as her blood sugar stays good. And then once she’s down to around 10ml/hr we’ll start dropping hours, yay! Hopefully by her one year b-day she’ll have a good amount of free time during the day off the IV’s.

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Our cute little lioness…..these were taken the day before Nora had her button taken out. As you can see in the second one she had to play with it one last time and give me the look that says “Oh this is what you don’t want me to play with? Are you sure you don’t want me to open it for you?”



Nora loves her squash!

January 16th, 2008


Nora ate her first vegetable 10 days ago, butternut squash – yummy!! She has handled it very well and it seems to be doing her system good. We bake it and then blend it with her rice porridge and she loves it. We had been debating what Nora’s next food should be after the rice for a while. We got a lot of different opinions and were crossing our fingers that the new food would agree with her short bowel. By the looks of her poopies she is digesting it wonderfully. The extra solids have been great for Nora’s weight, she’s at an all time high of 14lbs 15oz as of Monday’s weigh in!


Nora had a great visit with with Dr. Crooms on Tuesday, the surgeon who performed both of Nora’s surgeries and whom we will forever be thankful to for saving our precious little sweetheart. I can’t help but mention what a wonderful man Dr. Crooms is every time I talk about him. His surgical skills are amazing but his heart is even more so. He told us that he keeps a picture of Nora and him that we took on his mantel and looks at it everyday to remind himself that miracles do happen. We met with him to discuss removing Nora’s g-tube button since she has been eating solely by mouth since mid July. We have always been told by every doctor we’ve met with that if she didn’t need to use it by 6 months to 1 year of age than it would be safe to take it out. Nora is 10 days shy of her 9 month birthday and we’re feeling that the pros outweigh the cons of taking it out at this point. Of course there is always that big IF she ever did get very sick and need it again than that would mean another surgery. At this point the button is being used as an exit for her food rather than entry, by accident of course. It opens very easily and Nora’s little fingers are quick to open it and before you know it a bottles worth of formula will leak out. So with Dr. Crooms advice to take it out that made us feel comfortable with making the decision to do so and will take her back next week to have it removed.

On a last note, Nora has learned to wave hi and bye, clap and give high 5’s in the past week. We have been working on waving for a little while and once she got it clapping and high 5ing came soon after. Now she is an expert clapper and claps when she sees or hears about something or someone she likes. Especially when she sees her favorite kitty outside. But not just any kitty, she is very particular and only claps when she sees her favorite one out of the three outside kitties we have. She’s also been saying Dada a lot, sometimes entire conversations of Dada! All of a sudden our little baby is turning into a little girl and picking up new skills by the day.


Practicing her waving in the carseat mirror on the way home from Dr. Crooms.

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She also loves to tear it up in her walker, or we call it her car and boy is she speedy!


Happy New Year!

January 5th, 2008

Happy is indeed the word to start off the new year! Nora ended 2007 far above and beyond how she entered it earlier in the year on April 27. We are so happy with how she has progressed and are feeling very hopeful for her continued improvement in the year ahead.

Nora’s first day in 2007


Nora’s last day in 2007


Our shining star!

It brings back a lot of emotions looking at Nora’s first days, sad but also happy to see how far she has come. She continues to amaze us everyday with her strength and happy spirit. She can be quite the silly goose and brings us a lot of laughs with her growing personality.


Nora’s first tooth finally broke through on her 8 month birthday on 12/27. Or at least that’s the first day she let us get a peek at it. I’ve nicknamed her Percy lately because she’s always holding her little mouth tight lipped rubbing her bottom lip on her new tooth. The rest of the time she’s feeling it with her fingers.


Teething has not been good for Nora’s appetite. She goes through times of not wanting to eat very much when she’s in the midst of a teething spell. We know this is normal for all babies but for Nora it can be a set back when every ounce counts. Her weight has been fluctuating the past few weeks with her teething. She’s yet to make it above 14lb 10oz. She’s gotten there twice but had lost 8oz on last week’s weigh in. Thankfully her appetite seems to be picking back up this week and we’re expecting a gain when she’s weighed again on Monday. Overall Nora’s feedings are going great. She’s eating 106ml (3.5 oz) bottles of 22 calorie Elecare every 2-3 hours and eating her rice 2 times a day (when she’s not teething too bad). We’re wondering if she’s getting tired of the rice and is ready to expand her diet. We talked to her doctor last week about her diet and plan to start introducing new foods very soon. Homemade organic squash is most likely next on the menu.

Nora’s first Christmas was great. She wasn’t quite sure what to think of me showing how to tear into the gifts but she certainly enjoyed playing with the tissue paper. I’m sure by next Christmas she’ll have the gift opening thing down pat.


It was such a special time of year to have our precious little Nora to celebrate. She was by far the best gift under the tree. :)


Nora’s First Christmas!

December 31st, 2007


Ms. Nora Claus
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Santa Nora
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Merry Christmas!


Nora’s Big Girl Highchair

December 13th, 2007

The last two weeks have been great for Nora. Sorry for the lack of posts, we’ve been busy playing and having too much fun! :)

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She’s bounced back from her setback last month and as of Monday’s weigh in she was up to 14lb 4oz. Just 6 more ounces to go to get her back to her pre-anti biotic tummy episode weight. She’s eating great, full of energy and is just about to start crawling. Today she was pulling both of her knees under her tummy and pushing them back like a little inch worm. Her vocabulary is developing daily. It seems like every morning she wakes up saying new sounds and last week she said Mama!! The physical therapist from the Early Steps program came by for a follow up visit from Nora’s initial assessment a few months back and she was very impressed with Nora’s cognitive skills and coordination. No developmental delays here, Nora is right on track for a 7 month old and that was even while she was still half asleep because we had to wake her up from her nap for the appointment.


Nora is all about eating these days. She’s eating her rice porridge twice a day and if she sees anyone else eating out of a bowl she thinks it’s for her. Montana was eating popcorn the other night and she practically dove into the bowl!


We were considering expanding her diet beyond Elecare formula and rice porridge soon but since she’s doing so well at the moment we don’t want to rock the boat and will stay on this course for now. Tuesday evening marked a very important milestone for Nora, she got a big girl highchair!!!

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(yep, we joined the short gut rain forest highchair club) :)

“Hey what’s this on my bib?”


“mmm rice porridge is even yummier straight off the bib!”

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Nora getting a highchair is huge for us. In the weeks and months after she was born we were preparing ourselves for the mindset that she may never be able to eat orally or if she did it wouldn’t be for a long time. Everything is put in perspective when the daily things that we take for granted are suddenly not there. So when we are given these gifts it makes the experience that much more sweeter. So make a mess my darling Nora playing in your rice porridge and have fun with the eating experience because mommy will enjoy cleaning up every bit of it!

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Nora is ready for Christmas!

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We were standing by the tree the other night and she zoned right into her ornament as if she knew it’s just for her. And then of course she wanted to lick it like she wants to do to everything she can get her hands on these days.

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Watch out Rudolph, you have some competition for the cutest reindeer this year.

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