25
May 23
by Maryclaire Mayes

She Smiles

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This is our granddaughter Miss Number One.¬†She is so excited and proud to be 14 years old. She has overcome medical challenges as well as many other challenges. Born with defects in her heart, she had open heart surgery at 3 months old. The first surgery didn’t fix her leaky valve well enough and her surgeon felt her only hope was to try again 10 days later.

Many people loved and prayed for our little angel. We prayed that God would help the surgeon make a good repair. The surgeon wasn’t that hopeful after the surgery but said he did the very best possible on her tiny heart. The heart defect contributed to her getting pneumonia that was not responding to antibiotics and at times was very critical.

After over a month in the hospital she was allowed to go home on oxygen with a monitor. Her heart was able to work better and she was able to wean off of oxygen. At 18 months she had another emergency surgery this time to repair an issue with her intestines.

Miss Number One’s heart still needs to be monitored every 6 months. Her doctors aren’t quite sure why it is doing so well for her. I will never forget taking her to the lab for a blood test when she was about 3 years old. She held her arm out for the lab tech to draw blood as if she was just getting a kids cute sticker, never flinched. Then she smiled and politely thanked the tech when she was done.

It takes longer for her to learn new skills but through the help and determination of her family and her early intervention team of therapists, she learned to walk, talk, read and write. Through all the hurdles in her life, she smiles and loves life, her family and Jesus.


30
Apr 23
by Maryclaire Mayes

I Can Do That

After moving 800 miles south last Fall, we were able to set up to be able to take orders and ship to our customers very quickly. We were out of stock on a few things, like our popular Vanilla Lip Balm. In late March we were able unpack everything we needed so we could make a batch of lip balm. We wanted to get it back in stock before I had arthritis surgery on my thumb and would be one handed for at least 2 months.

After selling more than expected of the Shea body butter, Dean made them with the little help I could give him with one good hand. Probably the most important thing we needed to do was source goatmilk to be able to make soap here too. Dean did make a years supply of soap before we left NY, so we are ahead of scheduled so far.

I forgot to mention, while getting Alabu up and running Dean has been taking on small projects around the house (well, maybe not so small), like completely re-plumbing the whole house. Got to love his can do attitude and accomplishments! Right now we are taking a little breather and looking forward to seeing all the kids and grandkids this month. Wishing a Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there.


01
Mar 23
by Maryclaire Mayes

Be Careful What You Say

At the end of a visit from our son’s family, I was saying goodbye to Little Mr. Number Six. I teased him that he could stay here if he didn’t want to get in the car with his folks. Well I guess I will never learn you have to be careful what you say to kids. Now he really wanted to stay and I didn’t want to break his heart.

After a little discussion with mom it was decided it would be best to go home, after all he didn’t have his toothbrush, jammies or clothes for the next day. So the plan was for him and his older sister to come back and spend the weekend with us. The kids loved the idea but I was nervous as it would be the first time staying with us overnight without their folks. I am happy to report we all survived and I think we all even had fun.


30
Jan 23
by Maryclaire Mayes

Kids & Snow & Sledding

Last year our grandkids loved sledding on the big hill behind our house. Our daughter’s family now resides in FL and they recently came to visit.

The kids were thrilled it snowed their first night here. Since our house is on a little hill they had to find a way to make the most of it. No winter play clothes? No Problem! Borrow a pair of grammy’s socks for your hands and feet.

They had a blast sliding down on their stomachs, amusing the grownups as we watched the kids sliding down the hill like penguins.


30
Jul 22
by Maryclaire Mayes

A Little Side Trip

We ended up taking a little vacation in the Smoky Mountains last month. It’s always nice to get away to recharge your spirit. A change of scenery, rest and relaxation is good for the soul. The mountains are just beautiful and just what we needed. We were a bit surprised that the weather was beautiful and comfortable while our home in upstate NY was experiencing a heat wave and drought.

In the end we couldn’t resist a side trip (a 10 hour drive) to visit the munchkins who now reside in the hot sunny Florida. I suppose it was perfect weather for Florida, but surprisingly it wasn’t hotter than home. Everything was green because everyday we usually got a shower. The grandkids didn’t know we were coming and were so excited when they saw us. I thought the hugs would never end. They now live in a more spacious home and they are loving it there. The kids love to go out and see all the new creatures that reside there. Besides the geckos and lizards, large birds like storks and sand cranes wander through their neighborhood every day. We had a great visit and they showed us a few of their favorite places. We felt happy driving home, now that we have seen where they live. They are happy and settled into their new life.