Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Not the Average Weekend..

Hello all. Just a quick update on all the exciting things coming up this weekend. Obviously we are ZPO's, and our schedules are always stocked full with important events, but this weekend just goes above and beyond the norm.

Friday night Many of us are planning an evening out to see the new movie Aeon Flux. Very exciting. I am sad to say that I will not be going, but I am sure I will regret it!

Saturday is a HUGE day. First off, it is not only one, but TWO members of ZPO's birthday. That's right. Both Rhiannon and Liz will be celebrating the day of their birth. Liz will be going to the annual Don Jacobs Christmas party with Cory. The rest of us will be celebrating with Rhiannon with a wonderful dinner at Nagasaki and then drinks at Marika's. Yea!!

Along with the upcoming birthdays on Saturday, we will also be awaiting the arrival of Whitney's little girl. Whit, a friend of the ZPO's, is being induced that morning. Very exciting indeed. Am I done...nope. Saturday morning we also have my Aunt Jan's cookie exchange. This year she is also having a bazaar, so it will be combining two of my favorite things....eating sweets and shopping. What could be better??

An update on other ZPO related news....Liz is now able to hold Wes in a blanket and has started breast feeding! Missy has left the hopsital as we only need Charing to leave and we will be done with UK forever!

Monday, November 28, 2005

Charing's Family Photo

How cute is this? This is a picture of MOST of the people that were in town for Charing's family Thanksgiving. That's right...there were more that didn't make the picture. Charing is just peaking in, but I love it! If anyone else has family photo's from This weekend, send them my way and I will get them up!

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I am sitting here at working thinking of how lucky I am to be surrounded by such amazing and true friends. Do you all ever think about how lucky we are? I mean, we have the most amazing families, friends and lives. I am just so thankful for all of you, so I decided to do a little Thanksgiving day post

Over the past year so much has happened to us. If you think back, it was actually about a year ago that we started zeta phi omega. What a wonderful idea. A way of making sure to always set aside time for your friends. It has made sure we do things together, that we remember to have fun and not just let time go by and not see each other. We have grown so much closer during the past year. It is truly amazing.

We have the greatest families in the world. Some of us share families, some of us don't, but they are all truly amazing. As I think of Charing surrounded by her twenty three family members who all came here for the holiday it just makes me smile. With Rhi making fun of the parade with her brothers or us having our Thanksgiving on Wednesday so we could all be together, it just is a reminder of how close we all are to our families. Lucky us.

We of course have our new boy's. Their sweet little faces will be lighting up our days for the rest of our lives. Talk about being thankful. The two of them really show you what amazing things can happen in a year. They are so sweet and perfect. It will be funny to look back in a year when they are both running around like mad and try to remember them when they were this small!

We have had hard times this year, too. With family members being sick or dying. With break up's and heart breaks we have all been there. It is so hard to go through things like that, but having friends around you makes it a little easier.

We have each other, and we always will. We have set a tradition of making time. Thank goodness. What would we do without each other. Who would we laugh with, cry with, celebrate our most important times with? I just do not know what I would do without you all in my life. Thank you for always being there, and for letting me know that you always will. Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Wesley and his Mama!

Okay, yes I did just post about fifteen minutes ago, but I just got these from my Aunt Jan and I knew you all would love them as much as I do! How sweet is little Wes? Liz, you look so beautiful. You are absolutely glowing.

Liz and Wes spending quality time together

Mama giving her baby boy a kiss on the head

Barry D Get's Married!

This post is a little over due, but what can I say....I have been really busy. Back on November 12th the Shepherd family went to the wedding of Barry and Erin Duncil. In high school, Barry moved in with our family so he could go to school with us. He has always been a very special part of our family, so we were so excited to be at his big day!

The wedding as well as the reception were at the Unitarian Church. It is a very unique church with a circular chapel. They had decorated the room with pumpkins, flowers and candles. The ceremony was very sweet.

It was a beautiful day, which worked out perfectly because the reception spilled out into the surrounding grounds of the church. There were so many people there that we had not seen in years. It was like a perfect high school reunion where all the people you like actually come! Joey and his wife came in from DC, plus there were lots of the old coffee times crew there.

Barry's brother made all the food, which was so wonderful. They had beer and wine at the reception, so needless to say people stuck around and had a great time. Once the reception started to slow down, everyone move the party to Erin's dad's house. There was a lot more beer and wine. Nick and I were unable to go to the after party, but from what I hear, it was great! Everyone hung out and had a blast until really late. It was a perfect night!

My adorable mom and dad

Boo and Chris enjoying the food

Me and Nick

Missy and Patrick

Nick, Laura and Me

Chris, Boo and Patrick

My sisters looking like models

Barry enjoying his day

The boys at the after party (my favorite thing is Chris in the background)

The newlyweds at the after party

Monday, November 21, 2005

Wesley and His Daddy

Liz and Cory went to see Wes tonight and Cory got to hold him for the first time! They are holding him in K-Care, which is when he has to be skin to skin. I thought everyone would like to see how great he is doing! They cannot both hold him on the same trip because it is a little to much for him, but we will have a picture of him with his mama really soon...maybe as soon as he is to big for K-care because Liz's skin to skin might be a little more revealing!

How Great is Harry Potter?!?!

Okay, so this was the weekend that the new Harry Potter movie came out, and man, was I impressed. I know that it was missing some big parts from the book, but I think they just did a great job covering the main story. As is our tradition, we went to see the movie on opening night. Boo, Chris, Rhi, Nick and I went to see it together, and then out to dinner at Ramsey's. What fun! Since the Kelsey's and Liz and Cory were not able to go on Friday, we went again on Sunday afternoon. Yes, I am a little obsessed, but I have to say I loved it even more the second time! Carter joined us at the movie, so he is now a part of the Harry Potter opening weekend tradition!!

Missy was not able to go with us, so she went to see it with Becky on Saturday. They both loved it as well, and it has reminded Missy (and Cory as well) to start reading book Five! Oh you two have so much to learn....

Candice has not been able to see it yet, but since she is not a reader of the books, she may wait until Rhiannon owns it on dvd. She did get to go to a woman's tea with Mary and Victoria, which I sadly missed. I know they had a great time.

I was over at the Kelsey's the other day and just could not help but snap a few pictures of Carter. I hope you all enjoy them!

Carter just hanging out

And he is a little tired

But then I told him Wes was born and would be over to play with him really soon, and that got him all excited!!

Sunday, November 20, 2005

The Bridesmaids Dresses for my Wedding!!

I know you all will be so excited about this! I have been promising it for a couple of weeks now, but this time it is for real! Actual photo's of the bridesmaid's dress! It will be in this brown, but the ribbon will be ivory instead of pink. Hope you all love it as much as I do! (Thanks to boo for being such a great model!)

The dress from the front...for the record the wedding dress in the background is not mine

The back of the dress guessed it. the side of the dress!

Thursday, November 17, 2005

A Quick Update

Hello all! Just a few things really. Nick and I went to see Liz and Wes last night and they are both doing wonderfully! They both just looked great. I am sad to say that I was not smart enough to bring my camera, so I could not get a picture of Liz with Wes, but I am sure there are tons of those coming soon. They were hoping to get him off the forced air today, and then her and Cory will be able to hold him! I know they are both so excited about that.

With all of the baby excitement, I forgot to mention that I have a new job!!! Yea for me! I am now a Biological Lab Analyst for Envirodata Group. I have a white coat and they are putting my name on it and everything. A bonified professional working in my field!

I updated the poll because it was officially out of date. I will point out that clearly none of us can see the future because there was not a single vote for Wesley's birthday landing on November 15th!

Don't forget the new Harry Potter is coming out tomorrow night! I believe we are going to the 8pm show at Regal. There will be some dinner before, either at Rafferty's or Jonnie Carrino's. Either way...yum.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Introducing Wesley Ray Brooks!

Oh my my my what a week we have had! As I mentioned before, Liz went into the hospital on Friday after she checked her blood pressure at home and found out it was still extremely high. The started her on steroids to get Wes's lungs pumping just in case we had to deliver early...good thing!

Friday night they also started Liz on Magnesium....from here on out it will be referred to as Liz's arch nemesis (okay, okay...I know it most likely prevented her having seizures and what not, but it DID NOT agree with her body). Anyways, back to the story. Friday night we were all very worried about Liz and Wes. Cory stayed the night with her in the hospital and they got all the medications rolling.

Saturday we held Liz's baby shower at Jan's. There will be more details on this later along with pictures and what not. For now, we will say it was very nice. While we were there, Cory, Alice and Carissa were at the hospital keeping Liz company. Alice and Carissa had come into town from Wisconsin Friday night for the baby shower. After the shower, Rhi and Jan both went to see Liz in the hospital. While they were there, Liz's blood pressure got to high and they had to limit her visitors to one at a time as well as have the lights off and no tv. My mom spent the night with her to make sure she was okay, and she had a very difficult night.

Sunday morning she was doing better. Cory, Alice and Carissa came to spend time with her and all was well....until she started coughing. She was just not able to catch her breath. The doctors then let her know that she had developed pulmonary edema due to the magnesium...see what I mean...arch nemesis. They had to take her off the mag, which put her at a much higher risk for siezures. She was having a very hard time breathing so they put her on oxygen and gave her medications to reduce the fluid in her body in order to reduce the pressure around her heart and lungs. By this point, we were all basically yelling "Take him now!!!!!" but they needed to get Liz stable before they could do anything.

Sunday night Jan stayed with Liz and they were both able to get a little sleep. Bright and early Monday morning Boo and I arrived with breakfast. We all really thought it would be the day Wes was born. Alice and Carissa were at the hospital waiting to hear the decision....but we just kept waiting. We needed to meet with a specialist, and it was taking a very long time to collect all of her results for them to make a decision. At around 12:30 Alice and Carissa decided they could not wait any longer to get on the road, and they set out for home.

The specialist came in around 1:30, ran a few quick tests and said this was to serious to wait any longer. Alice and Carissa were in Louisville....the quickly turned around and came back! They wanted to attempt a natural birth, so they started medications to begin that process and promised us we would have a baby on Tuesday!

Cory stayed with Liz Monday night. She had a very hard night. They had given her medicine to take the edge off her contractions (they were about five minutes apart) but she had a bad reaction to it, and was having mild delusions throughout the night.

At 7:30 Tuesday morning they came in and let us know she really had not changed, but they were still going to try the natural birth. About two hours into labor, she was in a great deal of pain. They decided it was time to go ahead and start the epidural. Wow what a change! Liz looked great after it! They thought it would be best for her to get a little rest before things really got going. Boo and I headed home to catch a little sleep ourselves around 10am.

The phone rang at our house at 12:10 telling us to get our tails back to the hospital! During Liz's contractions, Wes's heart beat was dropping way down. They decided it was time to get this done, and called for an emergency c-section (if you asked any of us, we would have told them to do that Monday night....but I guess they have to try!) By the time Boo and I got back to the hospital we just got to kiss her on the head before she was rolled into the OR. The brought Cory an awesome looking surgery outfit, which he quickly put on and ran out the door.

The rest of the family (at this point that included Jan, Tom, Nana, Mom, Alice, Carissa, Boo and me) headed to the nursery to get our first peak at Wesley as they rolled him into the NICU. It felt like the longest 35 minutes ever!! Finally, right at 1pm, Cory and Wes rolled out of the was just amazing! He was so perfect. He was really tiny, but her looked great!

After that first little glimpse, we had to give the NICU time to get him settled and stable. Liz was in the recovery room, so we grabbed some lunch and talked about how amazing it all was. Before bringing Liz to her room, they brought her, Cory, Jan, Tom and Alice in to see little Wes. We found out that he was 2 pounds 12 ounces and 15 inches long. It was a quick visit because they were closing the unit. After, Liz had to go to her room and rest. We went and got flowers and balloons, then came back for our chance to see Wes.

Cory was able to bring us all in to see him once they had him stable. He really looks so wonderful (as you can see from all the pictures!!) As of today, they already have him off the respirator and just on an oxygen mask type thing. They said he will be off that soon. He will have to spend a few weeks in the NICU. He is a skinny little thing so they are beefing him up with straight fat through his IV!!! They are working on teaching him to eat and breath correctly. With a little luck he should be home by Christmas!!!

My dad giving Liz a kiss

Cory with Wes in the NICU

Liz with her wonderful nurse Anna, who washed her hair for her!

Boo waiting to be let into the NICU to see Wes

Wes has great timing! He was born on National Primie Day! They gave us cake and everything!