Monday, January 21, 2013

My nose is running....

'Tis the season for germs! Ella has been announcing that her "nose is running". She says it over and over and over. Sometimes her nose isn't even stiffly and she feels the need to announce her subsequent desire for a tissue. It is adorable and annoying all at once. I love hearing her emerging vocabulary (hugely improved post surgery). What I don't love is that she gets hit with the nastiest bugs. For Ella, that runny nose unfortunately turned into a lot worse. In what has become true Ella fashion, her little cold turned into a big sickness. We ended up at Albany Med with a high fever Wednesday. She was admitted after the x-rays and blood tests showed that she has pneumonia and RSV (a lung infection). It was horrible news, but at least she wasn't dealing with the flu as well which was a big concern when we first arrived in the ER. This was just shy of one day to the year that she was hospitalized for pneumonia last year. She was admitted on January 17, 2012...this year it was January 16. Talk about a horrible coincidence and something we don't want to re-live EVER AGAIN. It's safe to say that the Tapp's probably will start a traditional hibernation of sorts in mid-January next year.

We spent three days at the hospital and Ella seemed to bounce back pretty quickly. She still has a lingering cough and that runny nose persists, but we are incredibly thankful we caught this as early as we did. She was such a trooper in the hospital. The poor girl was poked and prodded and hardly got to rest with all the doctors and nurses in and out. Jason and I split our time with Ella, while trying to balance work and making sure Avery was all set at home. I took the day shift, while he spent some sleepless nights in a chair next to her bed.  There are not many feelings worse than seeing your child in the hospital. We are so thankful for the support of our family, co-workers and our Nanny and my mom who worked some long days and made sure Ave's was happy and healthy!

Feeling well enough for some
art projects at the hospital.
I am happy to report that we are on the mend. I have my fingers and toes crossed that this is the worst of the winter germs that we have to deal with (for many years, haha!).

Wednesday, January 9, 2013


Sister Love!

I have a feeling things are about to get VERY interesting in our house. Avery figured out how to get herself up on all fours this week. She isn't crawling yet...she gets ready and then looks at us wondering what to do next! It is very cute and incredibly exciting. This is a new experience for Jason and me. Ella didn't really crawl. She had her own timeline for meeting milestones. We still celebrated every moment and we will do the same with Avery. I was snapping pictures and sending Jason video messages all afternoon as Avery tested the (pre)crawling waters.

Ella even helped cheer on her baby sister, encouraging her and showing her what to do next. This was such a nice moment to see. It ended pretty quickly though. Just minutes later, Ella was pushing her sister out of the way. We are seeing a little more of this aggressive behavior. I turn my head for a second and Ella is ripping the paci out of Ave's mouth or snatching a toy from her hands. I have caught her pushing her over and even covering Avery's eyes by pulling down her headband. Lets just say we are not at the point of unsupervised play! The battles should be fun when Avery can crawl to any toy she wants. She is already eyeing Minnie Mouse and Doc McStuffins (Ella's favorites)

Ella is also finding her voice. A favorite phrase recently is "Enough Avery!". She loves to chime in when her sister is fussing. She even speaks up if Avery is happily babbling. I think she likes the little power trip. She is also likely mimicking me. I realize now I must say "Enough Ella" when she is mid meltdown or just having a whiny day. Looking on the bright side, at least she is listening and hears me.

Another favorite word from Ella is NO! She is definitely testing her boundaries with Jason and me. Her teachers also tell me she is becoming a bit more stubborn. Her easy going nature is being over powered by her desire for a little more independence. She gives her dad a hard time with just about every choice in the morning from getting dressed to what to have for breakfast. She also finds a lot of satisfaction in avoiding me at school pick up time. When her teachers tell her to get her coat or that it is time to go home, she boldly responds, NO! Some times it annoys me, but more often than not I LOVE to hear it. I don't want a bratty kid, but I do enjoy seeing Ella doing and acting how so many other 3 1/2 year old's act. If Ella wants to walk the walk and talk the talk, she'll also learn to pay the price. She is quickly learning that crossing the line and naughty behavior leads to a time out. I hate to break it to her, but little sisters take mental notes. She better be ready for Avery!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Welcome 2013!

Wow! Can you believe it is 2013. Where does the time go?? This past year was a whirlwind for our family. It was filled with so many wonderful moments, memories that we will cherish for a lifetime. 

I would have to say welcoming our little Avery in May was the highlight of the year. She is such a joy and brings us so much love and happiness. Her smile is infectious and her emerging personality is strong and sassy. She can sit all on her own and she is trying to figure out how to get up and go. She'll be crawling in only a matter of time...and then the real fun begins :-) She has also turned in to my little chatter box. Avery has a voice and she is not afraid to use it.

Ella has exceeded our hopes and dreams in all that she has accomplished this year. She is such a great big sister. She has grown in so many ways with her new role. She is mom's helper, a patient teacher and sometimes an annoyed older sibling (she doesn't really care for crying, haha!)  

It was a rough start to 2012 with a hospital stay for pneumonia, but her health improved dramatically from there. She has grown more than four inches and packed on close to ten pounds this year. The switch to Boston Children's hospital for her treatment has proven to be a good choice. Ella has had a lot of new adventures this year too. She started preschool in the fall and loves every minute of it. She also started ballet. Dancing brings her so much happiness. She can't wait for class every Thursday night!

2012 will also be one remembered for some big accomplishments professionally for Jason. In his first year as a coach with the Union college men's hockey team, they played in the National Championship. An unforgettable season led to a trip to Tampa for the Frozen Four. Ella and I were so proud to be there to cheer for the team.

This year will also be a hard one to forget for a much more somber reason. We lost a very special person last January, Jason's sister Jessica. Her love for Ella and her excitement over the arrival of another niece are some of my favorite memories. It is these memories and the many others that help us cope in some of the darkest days. The holiday's were hard...the coming weeks will be even harder. It is still difficult to come to terms with the loss. It's a pain that will never leave us. I want the girls to know everything about her. I had pictures of Jessica in their room and I will always tell them how much she loved being an auntie and how truly special she was. Jessica is Ella and Avery's guardian angel!

My hopes for 2013 are for health and happiness. I am excited to watch my girls grow. These are the special times. My goals are be a good person, to pass this on to my children, to enjoy my time with my family and to learn from the difficult and stressful times. I can't wait to write about the big moments, the milestones, the accomplishments. I am even more excited to experience these moments. Happy New Year!