Thursday, December 20, 2007

How do you spell Tiffani?


This is the first week I have had no outings during the day & I am going a little crazy! Here is a little peek at what we have been up to...
Morning Dog Naps

Great, what am I supposed to do?
I could do something productive.
Like write thank-you notes or organize something?
Nope, too bored to do that.
Hmm...I guess I could go get some juice!
Now what?

Perfect, I have What Not to Wear taped.
Stacy & Clinton will bring me entertainment!
Well, that was fun. Now what?
A piece of fudge will do the trick!
Afternoon Dog Naps

If you can't beat 'em, join 'em!

Now I think I will call Tim 5 more times!

What a fabulous surprise to my most BORING day!
Tim took me to get a mani/pedi...I even talked him into getting one too!

Monday, December 17, 2007

O Tannenbaum

Twas the Sunday after Thanksgiving, when all through Houston
EVERYONE was buying a Christmas Tree, even Tiff & Tim.
The ornaments were hung on each branch with care,
In hopes that their 1st Christmas Tree would soon
give reason to stare!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Come on Baby and Rescue Me

And that is exactly what my mother-in-law did today!

Alix took the day off & took me Christmas shopping. It was so much fun to have a girly day with her. We shopped, talked, laughed & lunched! She was such a lady & opened all my doors & held all my packages. I even got some free advice on what to buy people on my was fab!

Thanks to Alix I am 99.9% done with my Christmas shopping! Now I just need to teach Lucy & Stewart to help me wrap the presents!

Alix, you are my Rescue Hero!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

And the Crickets are Chirping

My Dad, Sunni & Ava all left Houston on Saturday afternoon. (Of course, not before we stuffed our faces at Los Tios...three words...Golden Beef Taco! ) It was a sad, sad day.

Don't get me wrong, it is great to be back to just Tim & Tiffani, but I knew I was going to miss each of them tremendously...they are the best! They were so sweet to give up so much of their time to take care of me & entertain me. I now have a freezer full of delicious meals & Ava left behind some of her fabulous kid snacks too!

I definitely heard the CRICKETS CHIRPING on Monday. Tim had heart patient proofed everything for me...unscrewed bottle caps on water & juice, placed items on lower shelves, dressed me & set up the couch for me. I was ready for my day alone.
I ended up spending most of my time sitting on the couch, catching up on all the shows I missed, shopping for Christmas presents online & dreaming about all the places I would take myself if I could drive! It was a LONG day, but I managed to survive & get some well needed rest. Besides, I knew that Tim was taking today off so I only had to get through Monday before I had someone to talk to!
Today we had to go to the doctor's office for a little finger prick & then we were off to the hair salon for my long awaited haircut! Ahhh...freshly trimmed hair feels so great! We ended up going to lunch & then I proceeded to take a hard core nap at home. I was exhausted! The afternoon got even better when Tim took me to see a movie. I decided we should go see a boy movie since he has been so great to me so we were off to see No Country for Old Men (it was very suspenseful...I kind of wanted to hide under my seat a few times). All in all, it was a great day filled with fun outings & the best company! I guess it is back to the CRICKETS tomorrow!
P.S. I am feeling great! I am still very sore & I don't have full range of motion in my arms yet, but I am working it out. I try to get some sort of lung exercise even if it is just walking around the house, but I still get pretty tired & need to rest. I can't wait to take the new valve out for a spin in several weeks! Thanks again for all the recovery prayers!

Thursday, December 6, 2007


Woo Hoo!!

Many, many thanks to Sunni & Tim for keeping the blog updated, BUT most importantly thanks to everyone for the prayers & sweet comments. Tim read me all the comments in the hospital & they were all so encouraging. My family & I feel so blessed by all the prayers. There really are no words for how thankful I am for each one of you. I have so much to say, but I am really tired so I am just going to post a few pictures from the last few days.

Wednesday Ava & I spent the morning watching Elmo in Grouchland on the couch while we ate our breakfast. Ava has definitely been the best medicine for me. She always makes me laugh & she loves to move my robe to look at my incision with a smile on her face. I'll be so sad when she leaves...the simple words 'Aunt T-T' have never been so healing!

After couching it for awhile we all went to Target for my outing. I'm supposed to walk around to make my lungs work so what better place to do that than Target! My Dad strolled Ava in a cart & Sunni strolled me around in a wheelchair. I protested that one, but everyone including Ava said NO! It was fine until Sunni left me in the medicine aisle. She had to get something from another aisle. It was really great...people would pass and look at me. I wanted to say 'Yes, I don't have any makeup on & my hair is not done & I am carrying around a pillow & I am sitting in a wheelchair & I am in the medicine aisle...all ALONE, but I promise my sister is right around the corner!' Sunni redeemed herself by taking me to the clothes section so I could get some new stuff to lounge around the house. Later that night my Dad made chicken & dumplings & apple pie...yummy!!

Today we went to Memorial City Mall for our outing. I was going to post all about it, but my lovely sister stole my post while I was taking a cat nap! You can read all about it here.

I'm so happy to be home. I'm still moving slow & I get tired very easily, but I think being able to go see Santa a week after heart surgery is pretty impressive! Thank you Lord!!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Home Sweet Home

Tiffani is home!

Early this morning, Dr. Franklin came in, and told her he was in EARLY today so she could be discharged EARLY.

Praise the Lord! His provisions for this surgery & hospital stay have been amazing. Everything went so smoothly, and any hiccups were quickly taken care of. We feel like it's a miracle.

My dad, Ava, and I just made a huge trip to the grocery store to stock up Tim & Tiffani's fridge. We ate homemade tostadas and pumpkin ice cream for Tiff's first night back home. And tomorrow we'll make & freeze meals for them.

Other than that, we're just celebrating her homecoming, and basking in God's sweet grace He's shone on us.

This is Sunni, signing out. Tiffani will be back to blogging soon!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Extreme Makeover

Two great things happened today:

1. Chest tubes came out!

2. IV came out!

Tiffani is a free woman, and no longer tethered to machines or IV poles. So liberating.

To celebrate, Aunt Kathy orchestrated an afternoon of beauty which included a shower, body butter, a hair blow-out, and a headband placed on Tiffani's head.




Caring Critters

Yesterday, Caring Critters came to visit Tiffani in the hospital room. It's a volunteer group that brings dogs up to visit patients at St. Luke's. They were so cute & we enjoyed petting them so much!

We especially loved Gus, a Biesla (spelling?)

And Garreth, the Italian Greyhound


Holly Jolly Hospital Room

The Christmas Tree

Santa makes a visit!

Tim holding one of Tiffani's chest buddy pillows. She uses it to hold it against her chest when she sits, stands, gets out of bed, or coughs.

Tiffani with a chest buddy. She's not as excited as Tim about the pillow.

Jason (a.k.a. Ava's Manny) and Tiffani

Emili and Tiffani (she's not on oxygen anymore...this is an older picture)

Ava clowning for the camera in the hospital's valet line. We had a request from Tiffani that if she couldn't hold Ava, she wanted pictures STAT!

Sometimes we just entertain ourselves by taking pictures of each other. This is Emili at one of our late night hospital pizza parties.


Sunday, December 2, 2007

If You're Not With Us, You're Against Us

That's what we keep saying to each other if one of us cringes at the amount of junk food another one of us is eating during Tiffani's hospital stay. Jason & Emili got a 10-piece chicken McNugget pack this MORNING at the hospital McDonald's during their coffee run, and that's the motto they started when I made fun of them. Then I stated the motto to them when they mocked me for eating a bag of Cheetos mid-morning, & ordering spicy waffle fries in the cafeteria for a community appetizer for lunch. We said it again when I questioned everyone's judgement about their pie for dessert after our turkey & cornbread stuffing around 2:00 pm today.

In other news...Tiffani is doing well! She's in her cheerful red bathrobe, and is doing her breathing exercises often & doing them well! The nurse said her lungs are looking a lot better. This morning, she did a breathing exercise to Mercy Me's "Little Drummer Boy." Best one yet!

She still hasn't gotten her chest tubes out...her doctor hasn't come by today, and no one can find him to have him check her & give the OK for them to come out. He's been paged several times, but he's unavailable. So we're assuming she'll keep them for another day. Tonight we have BIG PLANS to somehow rig the shower chair, and wash her hair.

We have lots of pictures to post, but the hospital's network is giving us trouble. We'll keep trying to get them posted!

Going to grab a bag of M&Ms,

Saturday, December 1, 2007

On the Mend

Tiff had a great first night her own room. She is resting comfortably and doing her breathing exercises. Her nurse is hopeful that she can have her chest tubes removed today and then we can have her up and walking.

She is still very sore, as expected, but getting her out of bed and walking should help her energy levels and soreness a lot.

I am so proud of her, she is so strong, within 24 hours of having open heart surgery, Tiffani has:

Gotten her breathing tubes removed.
Gotten out of bed and sat in a chair by herself.
Moved out of ICU.
Doing her breathing exercises (double the required amount).
Eating solid foods (I'm talking BBQ chicken, corn and carrots).
Entertained her whole family in her new room.

The nurses last night said she looked like she had gotten out of surgery two days ago, when I told them she hadn't even been out of the OR for 24 hours, they were really impressed.

We have been reading Tiff your comments and she wants me to thank every one of you for your prayers and thoughts, they mean so much to her and to all of us.

All our love,


Friday, November 30, 2007

On the Move

More good news. Tiffani got her breathing tubes removed this morning around 6:30 am. We got to go in and see her at the 10 am visitation and she was looking great and talking, but obviously she is very sore and tired. We saw her at the 5:30 am visitation too, but she still had her breathing tube.

We just got word that she is going to be moved out of ICU this afternoon, we are just waiting on a clean room. She is progressing really, really well and is hitting all of her major benchmarks on schedule or ahead.

Her cardiologist Dr. Franklin, told her that yesterday was the easy part, now the hard stuff begins. She will have to begin breathing treatments and sitting up in a chair today. Tomorrow she will continue the breathing treatments then she will be standing and hopefully even walking.

Thank you all again for the support and prayers.

All our love,


** Ava Update **

Ava is feeling and looking much better today, she doesn't have pneumonia and has returned to her role as the "ultimate niece" and "ultimate distraction".

Thursday, November 29, 2007


We all just went back to the cardio recovery area to see our sweet Tif, and she looks great! Her skin is so pink, and she's resting comfortably. If it weren't for all the tubes, you wouldn't even know she'd just had major surgery. At some point in the next few hours, they'll start the process of taking Tiffani off her breathing tube. She's very sedated, which is nice because she was worried about gagging on the breathing tube. Once she starts waking up a little, they'll take it out so she can breathe for herself. She did try to mouth "I love you" to Tim, and tried to furrow her brow when Tim & my dad said goodbye; so she's beginning to perk up.

We can't say this enough...thank you for all the prayers, and sweet thoughts. Thanks for your continued prayers throughout Tiffani's recovery. We feel the love. Praise God for our family in Christ! He is good & faithful always.

As promised, here are some pictures from this morning.

Tim & Tiffani--still newlyweds!
The sisters

Tim defying the hospital cell phone rule. He answers to no one!


Thank you Lord!

"Well, she's all done."

Dr. Fraser just came out and gave us the great news. The surgery is over and Tiff is resting in the ICU recovery.

We get to see her in about an hour.

I will keep you all posted.

All our love,


It's Shiny and New

"Everything is going wonderful!"

We just got great news, they have made it past the most high risk part of the procedure, reentering through Tiff's breastbone, and they are putting the new conduit and valve in place as I type.

"This news does not come with a time frame" so keep the prayers coming and I will give everyone an update as soon as we know something.

All of your thoughts and prayers mean more to me and our family that I can possibly say, thank you all so much.

All our love,


PS- I have taken over blogging responsibilities because Ava is still not feeling well and Sunni had to leave and take her to the minor emergency clinic, so keep them in your prayers too.

Houston, We Have a Heart Valve

Tiffani went back to the operating room at 1:15 pm, and we just got our first update at 1:45 pm. Tiffani had just gone off to dreamland after they got her arterial IV in place. They said it took them a little while to get that in, so we hope they deadened it "real nice" or else we will never hear the end of it! Dr. Fraser said the surgery will take 5-6 hours, but could go longer, and it's not a bad thing if it does. He said he takes his time. Which, of course, we appreciate.

We arrived here at 6:30 am, so we've really just been sitting around, and attempting to keep Tiffani entertained & relaxed until she was taken to the O.R. We're trying to use as much Grey's Anatomy lingo as we can. We even have our very own Dr. McDreamy.

Pictures to come!

P.S. Hope you like the new header! We thought Tiffani would like the surprise when she starts blogging again! Thanks, Fabulous K Blog Designs!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

A Brand New Shiny Valve

I know I haven't posted about my wonderful Thanksgiving in North Carolina yet, but I promise I will get on that in a few days. Here is a sneak preview...

It seems like ever since we got home Tim & I have been on the go. First, we had to get a Christmas tree. Second, we had to clean our house for all the guests that came in town today. Last but not least, we got our new laptop in the mail...and we just had to set it up! So as you can see there was just no time for blogging until now!

Today we spent the day at the hospital for my pre-op tests. I can't believe the surgery is tomorrow. It seems like I have been thinking about it forever & it has been so far away, but tomorrow I check in the hospital at 6:30 in the morning. My surgeon has a short case before me so I probably won't go into the operating room until around 11 or 12. I wish I could just go in right away so I wouldn't have to sit and wait, but at least I get more time to pray & read all my verses that have gotten me through the past few months. I am nervous, but CERTAIN that God has everything ready to go. HE will be the chief surgeon tomorrow!

I just want to thank every single person that has been praying for me and my family. I will never be able to express how much it means to me. Knowing that I have an entire ARMY of PRAYER WARRIORS out there has given me so much peace & comfort. I have NO DOUBT that God will be taking care of me & my family tomorrow. He is the Ultimate Healer & has blessed me immensely...especially by giving me brothers & sisters in Christ to pray for me.

My sister will be keeping my blog updated until I can take control! I'll be back soon with that brand new shiny valve! Keep those prayers coming!

Love, Tiffani

Monday, November 19, 2007

How To Make a BLUE Couch Cushion

First you'll need...

A Blue Pen

Then you'll need...

A Baby Cavapoo...Named LUCY

Then you'll get this result...

A Blue Couch Cushion
(I realize you can barely see anything. This was after LOTS & LOTS of cleaning. I was too mad to take a picture right after it happened. I promise it was WORSE than this...dark blue...I'm not just being dramatic.)

Then you'll have to...
Wash the Cavapoo

You might think the Cavapoo is cute, but do not be deceived...she is still a terror!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

A FULL Guest Room is a FULL Heart!

I LOVE when our guest room is full!

This weekend Sunni, Ava, Emili & Jaime all came to Houston. I was so excited because someone was actually coming to visit Houston, and it wasn't for anything related to doctors! Just for FUN!

Sunni & Ava arrived on Friday morning so I got to have some quality Niece Time at The Aquarium downtown!

Ava & Aunt T-T

The Fish

Ava loving the Jungle Sounds

Ava's Favorite Big Cat

The White Tiger Charmer

Ava & Sunni on the Shark Choo-Choo

Ava's Sea Lion

Last Stop...Splash Pad

Emili & Jaime got to our house late Friday night so that could only mean one thing...we would need some Buffalo Grille breakfast in the morning! Saturday we hung out, watched Blades of Glory, watched Ava feed the dogs treats & play with her doll, walked around the Village AND took Jaime to Lupe Tortilla for his first taste of heavenly beef!

Jaime & Emili

The Joys of taking a Family Picture

As I put away the few toys we have for Ava & cleaned up the guest room on Sunday afternoon, I just wanted to have a my own tantrum on the floor...Ava style. BUT, I resisted because I knew my guest room would be full again in just a couple weeks!