Wednesday, December 31, 2008

christmas Eve

The awesome Jelly Bean Jumper!

We spent Christmas eve with Travis' parents, and this was their big gift to the kids, it was sooo much fun! It is the material of a pool raft, and just bouncy enough to burn some energy without being dangerous. The kids fully approved!

Beginnings of Christmas

Our attempt at a family picture after doing our christmas cookies!

Logan trying to eat the cookies :0)

My proud girl displaying what we did!

A few days before christmas my mom and dad came over with sugar cookies that my mom had already baked, and the kids had a BLAST icing them and putting sprinkles on them! We even brought out the m&ms and other stuff we had! They were very Yummy :0)

Thursday, December 11, 2008


I was tagged by Becky, here is the 4th photo from the 4th folder! It is Julie combing Logan's hair after I had him buzzed! Logan was about 7 months old, and Julie was 2.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

A Very Carr Christmas

Julie and I made a gingerbread house!!!

Church clothes

More Christmas Church clothes

Here is what we have been up to lately :0)
Wishing you a blessed holiday season!!!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Faithful Fridays

Here it is, the post about my hearing loss! Many of you who grew up with me or who already know about my journey can skip this post!

I have decided to write this mainly for journaling purposes, and for my bloggy friends who may know, not know, or have questions about it. In the last 5-6 years or so, my hearing loss has become a very private issue for me. I am not really sure why, but I just don't talk about it anymore. This is strange/new for me b/c growing up I was incredibly open about it and shared my story with many people. I think as I have gotten older, I feel like I internalize a lot of my feelings about this and cope in a completely different way. So here is my story:

When I was baby, during one of my many ear infections, my eardrum burst and bled some. My mom looked down and saw some blood coming out of my ear and panicked b/c the doctor's offices were closed, so she took me to the emergency room. A doctor there made a huge mistake and put silver nitrate in my RIGHT ear. The reason this was really bad is because silver nitrate causes scar tissue to grow rapidly and should only be used in large skin wounds. (not to be used in any small openings/orafaces!) My mom knew something was very wrong, because I was in a lot of pain. She called my ear nose and throat doctor that night, and he was so worried he asked my mom to meet him at the office on a sunday morning. He ran some tests and this is when we found out I was completely deaf in my LEFT ear, and the doctor had put silver nitrate in my RIGHT ear. The doc told my mom he wasn't sure what would happen with that right ear, but it didn't look promising. He told my mom we would have to wait and see what happened. So basically this is looking like two bad ears for me!!!
As time went on, my mom, bless her heart, noticed I was exhibiting all the signs of a deaf child. I had my own language that only she could understand. I repeated things over and over and over as if to make whatever was said make sense in my brain. I always wanted to sit 2 inches from the television screen. She said to me once, that she would sit in a room and cover her ears and rock back and forth to try to get a better perspective on what I was going through.

I began speech therapy soon after that, and went to see an audiologist on a very regular basis. I was fitted with a hearing aid, in my right ear (my left ear is nerve damage and can never be fixed, but my right ear is a conductive loss, meaning one of the bones doesn't transmit the soundwaves, so I need tons of amplication to make things louder)I remember having to sit in front of a tape recorder and "learn" all of those sounds I missed that most kids pick up on as part of their daily lives. I had to learn the phone ringing, the doorbell, someone knocking on a door, chicken frying, dogs barking, police sirens, ect... the list went on and on! I remember my sweet mom working with me for hours and making a game out of everything so I could catch up! I started kindergarten on time and went to Harding (parents chose this b/c of carpeted classroom to absorb background/extra noise!) I was never taught sign language because they thought i wouldn't learn speech and only depend on signing (a lot has changed in 20 years about that, now we encourage babies to sign and speak) I was what they called completely "mainstreamed."
On to the summer before my senior year. After a rough spring with an ear infection and a lot of congestion, I lost a lot of hearing. It was like I woke up one day and it was gone! Many of the specialists I grew up seeing were really perplexed and basically had no answers. I was really really frustrated at this point. They basically wished me a nice life and lots of luck! It was then when I realized that this was huge to me. I had lived my whole life taking what little hearing I had for granted. I was terrified of waking up and being completely deaf. what would happen? I was mainstreamed, so i had no resources for living in a "deaf world." I wouldn't fit in anywhere!!! My wonderful parents encouraged me to continue living my life as i normally would, and they would be there to help and support me whatever happened. I went ahead to college, entered nursing school, and met the man of my dreams :)

Trav really encouraged me when we were dating to find out all of my options for my hearing loss. We went to a specialist who said that he could put in a prosthetic ear bone to fix whatever earbone wasn't conducting sound through my right ear, and I wouldn't have to wear a hearing aid ever again!!! The only catch was that there was a 10% chance I could wake up from surgery and be completely deaf. It was a risk. I toyed with the idea for 2 years. And went for it.
The summer before my junior year of college, I had surgery. When the doctor got in there, he found that I had no Stapes bone- that is the one closes to the nerve (there are 3 middle ear bones, the malleus, the incus, and the stapes-in that order)and where my stapes bone should have been, my facial nerve was sort of drooping down, and if the doctor had touched that nerve, I would have been completely paralyzed in my face. So he pulled out and was finished. Just him shining the light on my facial nerve caused me to loose my sense of taste and sense of smell on the right side of my face. the taste sense came back after about 6 months, the sense of smell... I am still waiting :0) When I woke up from surgery, my mom, my dad and travis were all surrounding me crying. my mom mouthed the words (I am a pro at lip reading) and I cried too. for a long time. It was real then. I was going to be this way for forever, and how long would i get to keep what little hearing I have? Hearing aids can only help so much...
I remember feeling frustrated in social situations, and my sweet Travis would be my ears. I used to be embarassed that he had to help me, but now I love him all the more for being so willing to "hear" for me. We truly are a team! He has been so wonderful through this whole journey and I thank God that he is my husband.

So here I am. hearing impaired. Some days I don't ever even think about it. There are other days when it is all I can think about. I prayed to God that I would get to hear my babies voices and what they sound like, He has granted me that. If I wake up tomorrow with no hearing, I know what my babies voices sound like- they are branded in my brain! :0) I am now praying that I can still hear them as teenagers and have long conversations with them. I am faithful that God has a purpose for my hearing loss, the hard part is that I think I haven't let go of it completely and given it over to God because I am afraid of what will happen. I am working on it, and i am thanful for God's patience with me. I am coping better I think, I am not angry anymore about it, or confused. I feel at peace, and I take one day at a time.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Christmas Jammies

I have started the tradition every year to have matching PJ's for the kids! I couldn't find any really cute gender neutral this year, so I found the same print with different color back ground. We had a blast putting up our christmas tree, both kids helped :0) It has been so fun seeing christmas in Julie's eyes, it is so magical and exciting! Logan is still a little young to understand completely what is going on, but he gets really excited with Julie and they are so cute to watch. Happy Holidays!!!