Sunday, November 30, 2008


Who was that overweight man by the Christmas tree?

Now that I am finished stuffing my face with Thanksgiving yummies, I am finally free to update everyone on our most thankful Thanksgiving. Although dad and grandma Lil were sick with the stomach bug (Logan and I began spreading it several weeks ago) and it was cold and rainy, we had a wonderful time camping at Stone Mountain! We arrived and set up our campsite just in time for dinner Tuesday evening. After eating a wonderful meal made by grandma Lil, we were actually able to go to bed by 10:30!! The next morning came quickly along with the news that both dad and grandma Lil were up all night with the stomach bug! With that, our camper became "hang-out" away from sick people!

On Thursday everyone was feeling well enough to eat a full Thanksgiving feast. Dayna, Brad, and Lilly Anne joined Sid, Logan, Liam, Lainey, mom, dad, grandma Lil, grandpa Bob, Uncle Donn, Aunt Jenny, Emily, Erin, Evan, Elizabeth, and I for Thanksgiving dinner. We were like the original Indians and pilgrims ~ eating outside at a long wooden table with a feast of food fixed using numerous methods of preparation! Note * campers have ovens and stoves, but not big or durable enough to handle a Thanksgiving feast. Luckily our campsites were equipped with big grills ~ ideal for our cooking minus the fact we had to do the cooking outside!

After a day full of compiling lists of items I wanted to purchase, I was up and shopping by 7:00 on Friday! Fortunately not many people that live close to Stone Mountain park were interested in shopping! I was able to get everything I wanted and did not even have to wait in line at the register....and I was at Wal-Mart and Target! I saved a lot of money and almost completed my Christmas shopping within a few for my least favorite thing ~ wrapping!

We were thrilled to have Sid's grandparents, Dick and Juanita, come to visit us in Stone Mountain. On their way to Florida for the winter from their home in Michigan, Dick and Juanita came to see our family and to meet Lainey for the first time! It is always great to see them although it is not as often as we would like! :(

It began raining mid afternoon on Friday and continued through our packing, our trip home, and the remainder of the day on Saturday. We had a wonderful time with our family and camping at Stone Mountain, but it is always great to be back home.

The Smithson Elves

After much convincing from the kids and I, Sid got the decorations out of the attic and began putting up the tree on Saturday evening! I am not sure who is more excited about Christmas this year, Sid and I or the kids! Logan and Liam are really into making Christmas lists this year. Their understanding of Santa and the true meaning of Christmas with the birth of Jesus is more apparent than ever. The innocence of a child at Christmas is priceless.

Buggy Claus!

I have added the video below as a reminder of the things our family is thankful for. This year has been full of emotions ~ happiness, sadness, anger, helplessness, jealousy, fear, awe, wonder, numbness, loneliness, amazement, hopefulness, and so many more emotions that continue to be with our family daily. The support of our family, friends, and people we don't even know, has been the greatest of all blessings. We are eternally thankful for everyone who has and continues to keep our family in their thoughts and prayers. It is our mission to share our story with as many people as possible in order to spread awareness of Cystic Fibrosis. We hope that Lainey will be able to tell her children and grandchildren that she had CF, but with the help of others CF now stands for Cure Found. Please consider making a donation to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation ~ 90 cents of each dollar donated is used directly for research purposes. Donations in Lainey's honor can be made at:

** Before watching the video, scroll to the bottom of the web page to pause the music. The pause button is on the top left of the music playlist.**

The Smithsons

Monday, November 24, 2008

Good Times

1998 ~ 10 year class reunion, November 22, 2008.
Sid and I with one of my 8th grade boyfriends, Skipper Brown, and his wife Karley.
This weekend Sid and I attended my 10 year high school reunion. After months of planning the reunion with several of my classmates, it finally all came together! It was great seeing some of my classmates that I haven't seen in 10 years! Many still looked the same, while others had changed dramatically!

Our D.J. was awesome, bearing lottery tickets as prizes for the categories game. Sid and I happened to win 2 categories! We have been married the longest (6 1/2 years) and we have the most children! These are not exactly what I thought my winning categories would be as I graduated 10 years ago, but I am proud of these accomplishments.

Sid was especially excited to meet several of my past boyfriends! While adorning my picture on his name tag, Sid was approached by two of my eighth grade boyfriends. Wow, talk about awkward...especially since Sid works with one of them at the hospital and neither of them knew they had me as a connection!

We thoroughly enjoyed our child-free evening at the reunion. At this point, our ideal child-free evening would be getting in bed by 9:00 and sleeping in until 8:00! This MAY happen in about 18 years! As for my parents, AKA the babysitters, they were glad to offer their services. Next time they would prefer their hot water heater was working! They had to bring the kids to our house so they could all have a warm bath. In addition, they would probably prefer the kids' bedtime to be before we left for the evening! Watching the three of them is not an easy task!

As for mom, her visit to Emory on Wednesday went well. She will begin her breathing treatments again soon. She has been instructed to begin slowly and work her way back up to a comfortable dosage. Although the doctors do no think this is the solution to mom's problems, this is what she will need to do until science has more to offer. The pains in her arms and chest are just occurrences due to pulmonary hypertension. They have also prescribed an inhaler to assist in her breathing. She will go back again next month for a follow up.

Dayna, Brad, and Lilly Anne were discharged from the hospital on Thursday. On Friday Lilly Anne went to the doctor for a checkup only to find out that her bilirubin was elevated. She had a bili bed in front of the window for the weekend. This allowed her to microwave enough to lower her levels dramatically. With a little supplementing of formula mixed with some breast milk, she is well on her way to sleeping in her own bed (rather than the bili bed.)

As many already know, I love teaching. The love for kids and teaching them skills for life runs in our family. Today I was nominated for teacher of the year along with 2 other teachers. This is a great honor. This is only my 3rd year at Fair Street, 7th year of teaching, and to know others are aware of my love for the children at our school humbles me. Although I was not ultimately chosen as our teacher of the year, I feel as though I am one step closer to my personal goal. Sharing my love for teaching through my actions toward the students as well as my coworkers is truly my calling. One day I hope to follow in my mother's footsteps, becoming teacher of the year for my school and possibly for the entire system. My mom has always been an inspiration. I have big shoes to fill and many footsteps to catch up with, but I look forward to the day I can walk along with my mom. She is an amazing woman!
I received a letter from my endocrinologist, only to find out that my Prolacin levels (lactating when I am no longer nursing) are still elevated! I am instructed to continue taking the medications I have been taking for a month and a half. No other test results have been presented, therefore either of two things could have happened. One, she may not have had the blood run for anything other than my prolactin levels, or she has not had the time to look at the other results in order to let me know what to continue or discontinue. I see a second opinion in my near future!

For Thanksgiving our family will be at Stone Mountain. We are taking our camper and meeting up with mom and dad, grandpa Bob and grandma Lil, Uncle Donn and Aunt Jenny and their 4 kids. Mom and dad left on Sunday and took Lainey Bug along! When the babysitters leave, you have no choice but to send the baby with them! I am not sure dad was prepared for the amount of things I packed for Lainey, but he grinned and loaded them up! It is amazing how the smallest person in the house requires the most stuff! We love camping and this will give Sid and I some much needed rest from our everyday hustle and bustle. The kids think the "Big Mountain" is awesome and have been ready to go since we mentioned it last week. On Thursday, Dayna, Brad, and Lilly Anne will join us for our Thanksgiving meal at our campsite. Mom and dad will be leaving Stone Mountain on Friday to go to Athens for the UGA vs. Georgia Tech game!

This year we have so much to be Thankful for. We are thankful for all of our friends, family, and people who follow our story with loving hearts and prayerful minds. We are thankful for our health. We are thankful for our two amazing little boys! We are thankful for the arrival of our little girl and to have her in our lives and our hearts. We are thankful for the numerous nurses and doctors that took care of Lainey in her most critical times. We are continuously thankful for the doctors who take care of Lainey on a regular basis. We are thankful for an overall healthy year for mom and dad. We are thankful to have parents that are able to care for our baby while we work and attend school. We are thankful for the safe arrival of many new babies in our lives, especially Lilly Anne! We are thankful for stability in our jobs and the ability to make it through the financially difficult time in our lives and in the country. Most of all we are Thankful to have God in our lives, for He is the reason we have everything else to be thankful for! Have a blessed Thanksgiving.
Love Always,
The Smithsons

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Lilly Anne is here!

Lilly Anne Kiley
November 18, 2008
7 lbs. 4oz.
20 inches long

Dayna had a fairly easy delivery today bringing our new niece, Lilly Anne, into this big world! Lilly Anne weighed 7 lbs. 4 oz. and was 20 inches long! Lilly Anne looks just like her daddy with the exception of having Dayna's nose. Currently she is taking after her mother and being very lazy...she doesn't want to make the effort it requires to get nourishment (the part getting nourishment is not like her mother!) Dayna waited until Mom and I could get to the hospital before pushing 4 times to deliver Lilly Anne. Although I have had 3 children myself, this was the first time I have witnessed a birth. Totally cool and truly amazing, but not enough for me to want anymore! I am so excited that Lainey has a cousin so close in age! They are sure to have a blast together, and if they are anything like Dayna and I, they will have each other to get in trouble with!

Thank you for all of your prayers!



Monday, November 17, 2008

Woo Hoo!

"Who says you can't accessorize when you are asked to strip down to your diaper?!"

Today Lainey had her monthly checkup at the Cystic Fibrosis Center. Although initially she was frightened (as she is with most men), she quickly warmed up to her adopted great grandpa, Dr.Caplan! Everyone at the CF Center was amazed at how much she had grown and changed over the past month. The office was quite busy with several patients. This was the first time we have seen any patients in the waiting room. Seeing other patients was painfully difficult, as for today we saw a young girl who was wearing oxygen and was extremely thin. Seeing her reminded me of how devastating Cystic Fibrosis can be. I try not to worry about what I see or hear in relation to CF unless it is directly related to Lainey, but I can't seem to get the sight of this particular young girl out of my mind.
On a positive note, Lainey weighs 14 lbs. 15.8 oz! This is 1.2 oz away from a gain of 2 pounds in one month! Although this was a significant gain, she continues to be in the 30th percentile for weight. She grew almost one and one half inches! She is now 25.4 inches long, in the 60th percentile. Her height to weight ratio puts her into the 48th percentile ~ we are almost in the green (on target height to weight ratio)! Thanks to Gigi for feeding Lainey full of rice cereal, baby food, and formula all day, she is catching up!
Overall, Lainey's appointment went very well! Her lungs were clear, nasal congestion was cleared up, and her stool was solid for the first time ever! We are not changing anything with her medications because it is obvious by her weight gain that everything is doing what we want it to do ~ keeping her happy and putting meat on her bones!
We are totally thrilled with her appointment today! I feel as though we have accomplished a major task in keeping her healthy and getting her closer to the green in her height to weight ratio! Her next appointment at the CF Center is December 17th. We are hoping for another awesome report!
Your thoughts and prayers have been felt! Please continue to pray for Lainey and our entire family! We also want to thank our friends and family who have donated money to the CFF in Lainey's honor! You are true life savers and are our heroes! We appreciate your help in finding a cure to help Lainey and everyone else suffering from Cystic Fibrosis!
P.S. Sid and I will have a new niece, and Logan, Liam, and Lainey will have a new cousin ~ hopefully tomorrow! Please pray for Dayna and Brad during the birth of Lilly Anne! Check back for pictures!
With Love,
DeAnn and family

Saturday, November 15, 2008


"Too bad the weather is crummy and mom said I can't go out today... I am looking too cute!"

This week the Smithson family has had several "firsts." On Sunday Logan was invited to a classmate's birthday party at Skate Country. This was Logan's first time on skates and he thought he was going to just "take off!" Needless to say, he spent more time on the floor than standing, not to mention skating! Although he kept falling, with his will and mom's muscles, he kept getting up and trying again. By the end of the party, he could "walk-skate."

Logan James skating for the first time!
This is the only picture I was able to take with Logan standing up!

Although I am not sure I was ready for Lainey to reach this milestone, she began holding her bottle this week! Sid was not moving fast enough and Lainey was ravenous, so she grabbed the bottle from him and fed herself! At least we still have a while until she can take her enzymes without help!

This "Bug" was tired of waiting for her dad to give her what she wanted, so she took care of it herself! Dad better watch his wallet!

It is amazing what the removal of tonsils, adenoids, and ear wax can do for a non-English speaking 2-year-old! This week Liam started talking more and much clearer than ever! It is almost like he is hearing things for the first time and actually able to repeat words appropriately! He has called himself "Wawa" for several months and now can say Liam! Logan has been "Ogie" and Lainey has been "Beebee." Logan and Lainey Bug are two names he says several hundred times a day, although they are not always used in a nice manner! We are totally shocked by the dramatic change his speech has made. He seems much happier and less inclined to throw a fit now that he is able to communicate his wants, needs, and feelings! It is too bad the doctors will not remove tonsils until a child is two and one half!

Liam ~ "One tough cookie!"

Yesterday Lainey had her second dosage of Synagis. We had to weigh her at home and report her weight to the nurse in order for her to administer the correct dosage of Synagis. Lainey weighed in at 14 lbs. 8 1/2 oz! We are thrilled by this weight! Last month at Dr. Caplan's office, she weighed 13 lbs. 1 oz. This is a gain of almost one and one half pounds! On Monday we will be going back to the CF Center to see Dr. Caplan for Lainey's monthly check-up. At this time we will find out if she has gained any more weight. She loves eating rice cereal and baby food with added vegetable oil, which has proven to help her pack on some weight! Check back Monday evening for an update on our visit.

On Monday I will also go to the doctor to have repeat labs drawn. Hopefully we will learn something from these labs. If the meds I have been taking for a little over a month are doing what we intended them to do ~ increase iron levels, lower prolactin levels (breast milk release), raise vitamin D levels, higher estrogen levels, and higher kidney function ~ then I will feel like it has been worth the 5 pounds I've gained due to the meds! I am still not totally convinced that everything is okay, but I will wait to see what the tests reveal. I am continuing to lose an abundance of hair, feel light headed, have hot flashes, and have several pains associated with my right ovary and my kidney....did I mention weight gain? With all of this, I am trying to direct all of my time to the kids and making/monogramming things to keep my mind off of my health. Teaching 21 first graders and having 3 kids of your own, can help anyone take their mind off of any health issues they may be having! :) Until I get any results, I have more exciting things to think about....such as becoming an aunt!

Tuesday, Dayna is supposed to be induced and we will finally get to see Little Miss Lilly Anne! I will be posting pictures on Tuesday if Lilly Anne decides to let the pitocin do its trick!

On Wednesday, mom and dad are heading to Emory for their appointments with the Cardiologist. Mom has been experiencing odd pains in her arms and chest over the last several weeks. With the recent death of one of their close friends, they are in need of a check-up! Through David's death last week, just a little over a week from hanging with mom and dad at the Georgia/Florida game, we have learned that there are no guarantees to life. Both mom and dad have defied many odds. I have had many more years with them than many doctors have ever expected. Selfish as it may be, it has not been long enough! I am praying for a good report after their visit with Dr. Book.

Please continue to pray for Lainey, the boys, Sid and I, Dayna and Brad, Lilly Anne, and mom and dad! This week will bring a little more craziness into our lives, but we are ready to take it on! Thank you for your continuous lover, prayers, and support! We need it and truly appreciate it!

Love Always,

DeAnn and family

Friday, November 7, 2008

Can You Guess......

............what I got today? Ummmmmmmmmmmm........Keep thinking..................
...................You are getting closer................................look to the left as you are thinking................

...................Ohhhhhhhhh Yeah, baby! I think you guessed it!

I got my ears pierced today!! Now all I have to do is put diamond earrings on my Christmas List to Santa!
Today I took Lainey to have her ears pierced. After seeing tons of needles and tubes in her when she was at Egleston, this venture was a piece of cake! She cried when the ear piercing gun made a loud sound, then all was cool! Lainey was a tough as nails. One minute of crying, MAX! We are still working on getting the marker off of her earlobe, but she looks so cute with her new jewels!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Georgia Girl

"Mom made this Georgia dress for me, but today I am embarrassed to wear it! Florida kicked our bootie!" ....Maybe next year......

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Too Many Treats!

Halloween with the Smithsons was WILD, but fun! Sid had to work until 7:15, so I took the kids out for an afternoon of costume wearing, candy gettin', cavity producing fun ~ also known as Trick-or-Treating! Several of our friend also joined us for some Trick-or-Treating excitement. The first place we visited for candy was the square in Gainesville. After the square, we hit the drive-thru at Chick-fil-A and headed for Gigi and Papa's house to eat, although they were not there to check us out in our Trick-or-Treat duds! Our last big stop was at the mall. It was crazy! I saw way too many of my students while walking through the sea of people at the mall. Sid was able to catch up with us at the mall and he was thrilled to be at the Gainesville Mall along with everyone else! Following our trip to the mall, we visited a few neighbors for some last minute candy gathering before calling it a night! Logan had such a blast that he asked, "Mom, can we go Trick-or-Treating again next year?" Sounds like a good plan! It was fun, but the kind of fun I can handle only once a year!

Lainey is here...just can't see her behind Cookie Monster Liam! Logan was the poster child for the new super hero ~ "Chunky Spider Man" ~ who says you have to be fit to be a hero? Katelynn was the Hungry Caterpillar...eating the paper just to get to the lollipop! Iron Man Dawson was enjoying the extra weight his muscles added, while his sister Kaylah the blooming flower, slept through the entire event!

Mom and her boys!
Watch Out! It is Spider Logan!

Cookie Monster Liam eating candy..........imagine, Liam eating only junk food!

"Lainey Bug" trying to take off!

"No Liam! I'm not a Real bug! Please do not smush me!"

This ladybug has brought more than luck into our house....she is a blessing from above!

And why did we spend the money to dress Liam up as a monster? He doesn't need a costume for the title of "monster!"

......eating MORE candy!

This is the last time we saw all of Liam's costume.....

.......we now have the "Stripping Monster!" And yes, he is eating another piece of candy!

Don't confuse this with a gang is his web shooter (since his mom would not spend the $29.99 for the "real" web shooter at Wal-Mart!)

The "Plugged Bug!"

Sugar Crash! Too much fun for a little bug!