"The best and most beautiful things cannot be seen or touched-they must be felt with the heart." Hellen Keller

Monday, October 31, 2011

Heart Walk, Halloween and cleaning it all up

As you can see the Heart Walk went very well this weekend! It was quite cold but not too bad. Bryson was great but he couldn't have cared less about a walk....he just wanted to throw rocks. Here is a video of him doing so!

Silly boy! Anyway, so far we have raised about 2100, I think and we have more coming. So proud of our team!

And then we did some Halloween carnivals and Bryson enjoyed that, as did Riley. Riley won a cake in his first try on the cake walk, he was so pleased!
Anyway, I will let the pictures do the talking!

Oh, and when the weekend was over we had to do some cleaning up. Bryson said he would do the bulk of the work, as you can see below. He is free on Tuesdays and Thursdays if anyone needs a cleaning boy! LOL

Friday, October 28, 2011

15 Things You May Not Know

I borrowed this from another blog because I think it is fun, so here goes....

15 things you may not know about me

1. I have really terrible night terrors, the ones where you jump out of bed screaming in the middle of the night. I have found that if I take melatonin I don't have them. I had to find something or my family was gonna make me move out!

2. I am a published author, my book is called "Bryson's Journey" and chronicles his days in the hospital and after. I LOVE to write

3. I have a double bachelor degree in English and Mass Communications. I wanted to be a journalist on tv but I couldn't be that aggressive.

4. I had my very own tv show. I worked at a local educational channel in my hometown and hosted a show called "Chalkdust" where I interviewed people about upcoming events or educational things they had done in the classrooms or communities. I used to think it was kind of silly but now I miss it.

5. I color! Any time I have any freetime at all, I color. It has to be markers and I order these fancy, geometric or mandala-like coloring books. It is soooooo therapeutic!!

6. I have four half-brothers and one half-sister. Two of my brothers and I share the same mom but have different dads. Two of my brothers and my sister share the same dad but have different moms. I know, we should be on Jerry Springer!

7. I buy all my Christmas in September/October. I get so excited that I can't stand the suspense. Everyone makes fun of me for it but guess who is home sipping hot chocolate on Black Friday! That would be ME!

8. If I could go back to school and start my career over, I would be a nurse.

9. I traveled to Paris and London when I was 18 years old. I had JUST found out I was pregnant and so did my parents who went on the trip with me. Can anyone say AWKWARD!

10. I have to take a bath or shower EVERY SINGLE NIGHT. I refuse to get in my bed with the filth of the day on me.

11. When I wake up in the morning my hair is matted like a dog....and I mean a rabid dog. My kids all have the same problem.

12. I have four tattoos. A "tramp stamp" that is a huge red cross (still freaks my skin doctor out every single time he looks at it, you would think it was a jumping spider!). Stars on my foot with my kids names in them (and my personal favorite tattoo). A heart with wings and an M in it on my wrist (might stand for Mark...maybe marshmallows....hmmmmm), a butterfly on my hip that I got when I was about 16 or 17.

13. Practically every piece of clothing I own is black!

14. My initials spell my name. Amy Marie Young A.M.Y.

15. I write all of my letters backwards. I start from the bottom and go up. I do it with letters to. I write them the complete opposite of how everyone else does. My kids do it too and man, oh man do teachers HATE it but it sure is a conversation starter when you get older. LOL!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Beads of Courage

This picture is a blast from the past! I just wanted to post it because I love it! I know Bryson isn't happy but I sure am! This is when he was on the road to recovery and we had so much new hope and excitement and I was getting to hold him every day. It was Heaven as you can see from the expression on my face! :)

Such an exciting time for Bryson! My bestest friend Kelley made and delivered his "Heartbeats for Bryson" shirts for the walk! YAH! They turned out great! Riley actually helped in making the shirts. When we first talked about a heart walk he drew a heart walking down a road...so cute! Kelley used that idea to make our walking heart! We are so excited about the walk. We have had a lot of donations and people wanting to walk with us! It should be fun!
And.....let's see....Bryson peed in the potty this morning. From what my mom says she was far more excited about it than Bryson was. That kid IS NOT a morning person. He is like me, he gets all fired up at night and has trouble going to sleep but he can sleep until 11 everyday if we let him. I love that about him! :)
He got his teeth checked and cleaned
AND Bryson got his beads of courage. I am so excited about that and so was Riley. He spent the rest of the night stringing beads together to make necklaces. He received over 750 beads. Each bead represents something different. Some examples of what he received beads are...
nights spent in the hospital
days intubated
needle pokes
blood taken for labs
cath lab
special bead for the day he was released from hospital
And this kid earned EVERY SINGLE BEAD!
Anyway, these beads are so very special to us and I hope one day when he is older he will feel the same way. Right now I just think that he thinks they look delicious. LOL!

Oh and Kory is taking his driving test today so WE WILL SEE! He is so nervous but he is a great kid and he will do fine! I will be back to post lots of pictures of the heart walk, Halloween, Kory driving (or not driving!) Oh and Riley was invited to be on a "specialty team" for football....kind of like All Stars for football so that ought to be fun!
Be Good, love you all! :)

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Shingles, and allergies and head colds....OH MY

Well we have been super busy! Let's see....and allergies and sickness and shingles is trying to take us down. Yes, Kory got shingles...on his face! UGH! Awful stuff! It was painful and he was soooooo tired. I didn't think he was gonna make it! And, he is working at the haunted house as a chainsaw-wielding clown so he needed his energy but he is officially MUCH better and got all his hair cut off and he looks so cute. He looks like such a man! He shaved his beard too! I like the beard but oh well.
This week I got a head cold...or sinus infection....anyway, my head was infected. After a shot and antibiotics I feel.....better. Being sick sucks! Especially when you have a full-time job, three kids and MORE!
Riley is still playing football and he is doing great. He plays defense and offense...he actually plays the entire game and he loves it.
Bryson is silly as always, busy stealing everyone's attention. The kid loves to be chased and wrestle. I swear one night I am going to video him. We lay down to go to bed and we put him in between us with the green, satiny blanket. He stuffs the entire blanket in his mouth it seems. I swear one day he going to be a clown and do an at where he pulls an entire blanket of cloth out of his mouth. Cracks me up! Anyway, he is so tired but tries SO hard to stay awake as long as we are awake so as we read he does what I call the "crocodile roll". He rolls and rolls and kicks and moves and tucks his butt up in the air over and over. We have learned that if we ignore him instead of telling him to be still he soon wears himself out and falls asleep with his butt in the air. Silly boy!!!!!!!!!
We are gearing up for the Heart Walk and we are so proud that Bryson is the Grand Marshall of the event. I love to share his story for so many reasons. He is a superhero, a miracle, an inspiration, a testament....and more!
The boys are getting their pictures made on Sunday (except Kory has to work so he may not be taking his picture) BOO :( and I will post those as soon as I can.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Big News

Guess who is going to be the GRAND MARSHALL for the Odessa Heart Walk!!!!!!!!
You guessed it! Bryson! AND.....he is the "poster child" for a private school in Midland and they want him to come and make an appearance. Next thing you know he will need a P.R. person and a calendar and an Iphone! LOL! Anyway, I am so proud of him! Below is the text part of the email that was sent out to everyone. I couldn't get the pictures in there but there was one from when he was sick and one from now.

Bryson Young was born on September 17, 2009 to Mark
and Amy Young of Odessa. Bryson has two older brothers,
Riley and Kory. Many of you may know Amy, she has
been an employed with ECISD for over seventeen years.
Bryson was born with Transposition of the Great
Arteries (TGA), coarctation of the aorta, ventricular septal
defect (VSD) and Taussing Bing (DORV VSD). Shortly
after Bryson was born, he was life flighted to Dallas
Children’s Hospital, where he would spend the next four
months in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.
Bryson’s Mom, Amy started a Journal for Bryson, so that
when he was old enough she could read him the
day-to-day challenges he had overcome. Then he would
know what a miracle he truly was. I read Amy’s book
Bryson’s Journey and from the forward I was hooked.
Amy wrote in the forward “ I had so many; many
pictures in my head of what our future would be like.
But then one day I quit writing in Bryson’s journal.
I felt stupid writing in it because there was a chance
that he would never read it. Instead I carried around
a piece of paper in my wallet for a funeral home, so that when he passed I wouldn't have to scramble to find someone to cremate his body. There is nothing quite as painful in the world as losing hope, especially when it involves your child.”
Bryson was fourteen days old when he underwent open heart surgery to repair his heart defects. His recovery was long and each day was met with challenges. Bryson was dependent on a ventilator for his every breath. Over the weeks, Bryson slowly grew stronger. Today you would never know what he has been through if it weren’t for the numerous scars that cover his body. Bryson visits his pediatric cardiologist twice
a year and could need more surgeries and procedures as his heart grows, but for now he is a thriving, adorable two-year-old boy who is full of
energy and life.
The American Heart Association is proud to have Bryson Young as
The Grand Marshall of the 2011 Odessa Heart Walk.

Please join Bryson, the Young Family and ECISD at the 2011 Odessa Heart Walk on October 29th at Mission Fitness. Join Bryson’s Team “Heartbeats for Bryson” or start your own campus team today! Help us make a difference in the future of children like Bryson.

Bryson’s Journey, is a book written by Amy Young and details the roller coaster ride of her
son’s harrowing fight for life. This book is available by contacting Amy.young@ectorcountyisd.org. All proceeds from the book go directly to the American Heart Association. Please contact
Sharon Rhea, AHA Youth Market Director at 325-829-9302 for any questions, fundraising ideas
or supplies.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Weekend Fun and two big announcements

Well, sadly, we weren't able to go to Granny's 85th birthday this weekend due to LOADS of rain. So if you are reading HAPPY BIRTHDAY GRANNY! We love and miss you!
However we did have a nice weekend anyway. And Monday the kids were off because of Columbus Day and so me and Riley and B went to the park. At first Bryson wasn't sure what to do. He has been to the park before but not a lot because he just can't do the heat. I'm not sure if that is a heart thing (I think it is a little)but Monday the weather was so great! Anyway, he ran around haphazardly and pointed and laughed and talked and tried to steal some kid's remote control car. (he is toddler and EVERYTHING belongs to HIM!)

The funny part is that there are slides and toys and gadgets and swings but that is not what Bryson truly loved. The park was right in front of the hospital (the one he was born in!) and there was a handicap ramp that lead to a locked door for hospital staff and patients and ALL Bryson wanted to do was run up the ramp and back down the ramp, over and over and over! Riley just did not get why the kid would want to run up and down the ramp. Goofy!

So afterwards we went to get something to drink. Bryson wore us OUT! I thought this kid with heart defects was supposed to tire out easily! Could of fooled me!
Got smoothie????

And this one is just because I want you to see how goofy this kid is!

Anyway we had a nice, relaxing weekend where we played and had lots of fun being silly. It was a nice break from our crazy schedule!
I have some exciting news, actually TWO bits of exciting news.
First, drum roll please......................I passed my Generalist exam! YEEEEEHAW! (yes I just yeehawed!) SOOOOO glad for this! Such a HUGE weight off of my shoulders and now I am certified to be a teacher! There is only one campus I want to work at so I have let that principal know and I am waiting patiently. It will more than likely be next year but that is ok with me. I am just so glad to be in this position and so blessed in my career.
And number two.........Bryson has been picked to be the Grand Marshall for our local heart walk! Yea, so exciting! I just found out today so I really have NO idea what this entails but I know it is going to be great! I really want people to hear his story for the simple fact that HE IS A MIRACLE! And I want others to have awareness of the #1 birth defect. So many children go undiagnosed and pass away without anyone ever knowing there was a heart defect. There have been some with Bryson's very same defect that went home and passed because no one knew. The facts about congenital heart defects are staggering and this is a way for people to be educated......and to hear his amazing.......truly amazing story! I can't wait. As I said I don't yet know what a Grand Marshall does but I picture us hoisting him up on our shoulders (don't tell my mom about that, she will freak) and shouting BRYSON, BRYSON as we walk in a parade. I know, hilarious right! I know that isn't really how it works but I think it is funny that I can't get that image out of my head. :) Anyway, I meet with the woman from the American Heart Association this afternoon and I will have more information then. SO EXCITED!
Love to you all!!!!