Monday, March 31, 2014

Here we are on the eve of April Fool's Day! I admit, it's not really a holiday I gave much thought to before. However, 2009 changed my view of it forever.

A couple of days before April Fool's Day,  Shane had not been feeling very well. He got really pale and clammy while putting together some bookcases. He was sort of breath and said he just didn't feel "right." He went to lay down and just didn't look good at all. The next day we went to the doctor and he didn't do much but say he thought that the leg pain Shane was complaining about was nothing much but a pulled muscle. We go home and follow the doctor's directions only to have Shane wake up the next morning (April 1st) to a swollen and streaked leg. Off to the doctor we go again...this time he sends us for an ultrasound, still swearing that he doesn't think it's anything serious.


So we go for the ultrasound, to make a long story short, he had blood clots in his left leg. We were sent immediately to the ER where they started running a lot of tests. The doctor came in to tell us that Shane's lungs were peppered with blood clots. He actually said it looked like someone had put their fingers in red paint and flicked the paint at Shane's lungs...

His awful feelings the days prior were because he survived a pulmonary embolism. The doctor emphasized "survived" because in his words, not many people do. That left us eight days of a blur in the hospital while the doctors tried to figure out why Shane had blood clots. He had none of the typical triggers for blood clots, he didn't have a recent surgery, doesn't fly in planes a lot, doesn't sit for long periods of time. After several days they finally did genetic testing and found that he has Lupus Anti-coagulant.

(for more information, take your pick!)

What are the major symptoms of LA (besides the obvious blood clots)? Well, they are 1. early hair loss
2. difficulty losing weight
3. insomnia

^sounds like someone I know and love! In addition to those symptoms, Shane had been having horrendous night sweats for over a week prior to the pulmonary embolism. Night sweats are a huge red flag for a few major health issues, please do not ever ignore those!

The good news is this, Shane has a pretty normal life with his medication. He has a few food items he has to avoid but other than that I think he has good control on his LA. The downside is that it is hereditary. The kids will eventually be tested as they get a little older.

I am always thankful to have Shane in my life but watching him survive all that and see our life together flash before me...made me all the more thankful!

The point of my ramble? To get the word out there on LA. Shane had worked so hard for so long on his weight, been to sleep centers for his insomnia and just accepted that he had thinning hair. Each of those symptoms seperately may not seem like anything earth shattering but I sure wish that one of those doctors had listened to the fact that he had suffered with it all for so long and perhaps dug a little deeper before we had to give him the title of "survivor."

Saturday, March 22, 2014


I swear I say this every time I log in to post...I can't believe how fast time has flown by!

I still haven't posted the fantastic pictures from my 40th Birthday in JANUARY! WTH?

Anyway, February wrapped up nicely for us. The weather was warm fast, we hit the low 80s by the beginning of the month. We did get a couple of "cool downs" to the low 70s and we loved every minute of it! March kicked off with a fantastic trip to Cannon Beach, Oregon :) This is one of our favorite spots and has been since Cassandra was about 14 months old. We did a beautiful scenic drive up through northern California's coast/Redwood forests. It makes for a longer drive up but I think it's really worth it! The weather was glorious in Oregon, we only had rain the day we arrived and the day before we left. Other than that it was sunny (which I could have lived without, HA HA!) and chilly! Most days we were in the mid to upper 50s.

We visited the beach all but one day. We ate at our favorite spot, Camp 18, TWICE! We found a new local spot to hang out, Icefire Glassworks. If you ever go to Cannon Beach, I strongly suggest you take your family there! The place is owned by a husband and wife team who are real characters :) They do demonstrations of glass blowing as you watch behind a glass wall. It is fascinating! All four kids sat and watched for almost 2 hours the first visit and a little over an hour the 2nd visit. They are so personable and they walk you through the process as they go. After each piece is done they stop and come out to chat with you about anything and everything. They are on Facebook, check them out!

Aside from an amazing vacation, we are enjoying what is left of our 2nd week of spring break. It has included  A LOT of sleepovers with friends and playdates. The weather is nice, a little warm but I am actually thankful it's only 84 right now as we have had many a March where we reached 90-100 degrees!

Here are some pics from our trip!

 Kick off breakfast at Cracker Barrel in the west valley!
 Dad looks ready to get out of town!
 Beautiful Northern Calif weather.
 Northern Calif
 Almost to the Oregon border
 Camp 18 in Elsie, Oregon
 I had a bunch of coffee and a "cup" of clam chowder! Delish :)
 Kids outside of Camp 18 with the resident cats.
 FINALLY at the beach!
 Haystack Rock

 Second trip to Camp 18, pics by the river :)

 Icefire Glassworks
 Roosevelt Elk near our trail at Ecola Park.
 View from the hike...
 More view from the hike...
 Me and my sweet at the top of our hike!
 Crazy boys!
View of Haystack Rock from Ecola Park