Thursday, July 06, 2006

Dad is back home again!!!!!!!

Lori and Connor 6 July 2006

Yes Dad is finally home! It is such a great feeling to be safe in the arms of the ones I love…. And what a homecoming it was….holding my son in my arms, hugging and kissing my wife again….its good to be home! I can’t even explain it with words.

But I can tell you how proud I am to have such a beautiful wife and a fantastic son. Lori thank you for your steadfast love and devotion to myself and Connor, without you I don’t know where we’d be.

I look at the world and see turmoil and strife in families and I’m so glad I have you Lori as my wife…you are the one who sets my heart at ease and the one who brings peace and tranquility into my life and our home….what a jewel you are to me….I’m so glad you are my wife! And to Connor…I don’t think he knows it yet….I keep trying to tell him how blessed he is to have a Mommy like you….he got the best the world has to offer! (me too) Someday he’ll realize it but for now I’ll just keep reminding him how lucky he has it.

It’s a little after 5am and as I sit at my desk I’m reminded of how blessed I truly am…..a picture of Connor kissing me….my Father’s Day CD….my parent pass from Children’s Hospital….my Happy Father’s day picture book…the book “I’ll wait right here”…….lots of love notes from Lori…..and Littlebugs letter to Daddy on the 4th of July.

I just got through rereading “Connor’s letter to Daddy on his 1st 4th of July”…..I had to stop and wipe the tears from my eyes so I could continue to read. Having just returned from countries like Iraq and Afghanistan, I know the true meaning of freedom and its true… freedom is not free…its born out of the sacrifice of many willing to give their life to secure it and preserve it….never take freedom for granted for if you do you will soon lose it! And if you don’t believe me take a trip overseas with me! Remember what Psalm 33:12 says….”Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord.”

So Connor….you may ask someday why I do what I do…….I do it to make sure you live in freedom....and it’s worth the sacrifice.

All my love to you both….my beautiful wife Lori and my son Connor
Randy….and Dad!

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Happy 4th of July!!!

I'm a little flirt with my mama.....I'm even starting to smile back at her just a little bit.

Little Bug is an "All American Boy" as you can see!!!!

Mama and Little Bug before going outside to light sparklers!!!

Yippee......Little Bug and his first holiday at home!!!! We enjoyed lighting off sparklers on the back porch. We saved a few so we can light more off with daddy tomorrow night!!!

Ooooops....I'm starting to get sleepy. All this celebrating is tiring for a Little Bug like me!!!! I think I'm gonna rest my eyes in my swing. Wake me up when the big fireworks start!!!

Mama says I'm quite the Little Firecracker!!!! I'm pooped from such a fun day. This Little Firecracker needs to say nighty night and God Bless America!!!!

A letter to my dad on my first 4th of July!!!

Hi Dad,

It's my very first Independence Day!!!! I know it must be a really special day because mom's putting out decorations in red, white and blue and she's making lots of good BBQ food. Mom's really funny dad, she's been singing patriotic songs to me for the past couple of days, but today she woke up singing "I'm Proud To Be An American"! We were dancing around the deck and having a grand ol' time but then her eyes got all filled up with tears. She whispered in my ear, "I sure do miss daddy today." I had to agree, I miss you today too dad.

I've been getting quite an education for the last couple of days. Mom's been telling me all about something called Freedom. She says that there are lots of people that sacrifice a lot of things so that we can be "Free". And guess what dad, you're one of those people. Mom told me all about how you are a Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Air Force. WOW Dad, that's impressive. I know I'm only 5 1/2 months old, but I know that's a really big deal. You've worked really hard for the last 22 years to be where you are today. Mom says you've flown so many different airplanes while you've been in the Air Force and that you love each and every one. I think she said that you like the small ones best, like the T-38 that you were an instructor pilot on, because they go really fast and you can do something called aileron rolls. Mom says you love doing dare devil stuff like that for fun. Whee........maybe someday you can take me on a thrill ride!!!

I wanted to thank you so much dad for the sacrifices you make to allow us to be free. You have to go away a lot on your airplane and be away from home and I know that must be so hard for you. When you are gone on those long trips you fly your airplane into enemy territory sometimes and I know that you have seen a lot of scary stuff. You've struggled through extreme heat and slept in tents and barracks and gone to places that most people have never even heard of. Thanks for showing such incredible bravery dad, you are my hero!!! Mom tells me that you fly the big C-17 planes that deliver supplies, tanks, machinery and troops overseas. That's a big responsibility dad. I appreciate all that you do to make sure our troops are well fed, warm & clean and supplied with all the artillery that they need. Mom says you even get to pick up the troops and bring them back home to their families. That must be the funnest mission to fly because you know you're making them sooooo happy. I hear that you even get to support the President of the United States when he is over in places unknown. Mom says you even got to transport his limo one time!!! Hee Hee. I bet one of these days you might even get to meet our Commander in Chief!!! Mom told me also about the time you got to meet Dr. Condoleezza Rice. I think that's pretty impressive dad. I know it's not all about the people you meet, but these are people who are fighting for our freedom as well and you have had a chance to support their efforts. I just want it to go on the record that I think that's great.

Mom also tells me that you've seen a lot of things that make you sad. She told me about the time that you transported some fallen soldiers back to their home state with flags draped around them. There must be no greater honor for you than to salute those fallen solders in thanks for what they have done for all of us. Dad, I'm proud of you. You have chosen a most worthy career and I want you to know that I notice every single bit of pride that you have to be in the United States Air Force. As mom has been teaching me about freedom, the one thing she keeps saying over and over again is that "Freedom is not Free." We have to pay a high price to walk in confidence that we are free and she tells me that our military and their families pay the greatest price. I want you to know dad, that you reward in working so hard for our freedom is that I will grow up knowing what you have done for me and for our whole family. I can't wait to grow up and learn more about our presidents and our forefathers who have labored for hundreds of years to make sure that our great land is protected. Mom even says that we will take a family trip some day to see a lot of the historical places that are anchors of our freedom. That will be a fun adventure, dad. I can't wait.

I understand that I will be amazed later on tonight with something that mom calls fireworks. She says they're just beautiful and they light up the sky with shouts of jubilation. I hope I can stay awake long enough to see some of the spectacular colors. Perhaps Mom will even let me hold my first sparkler. I think she's planning on it, but we have to wait until dark to get good pictures.

On this 4th of July I want you to know that I appreciate you dad. Even today you are away serving with your squadron overseas. Please be safe and know that we are proud of you!! Thanks for serving our country, for serving God and for serving our family. I salute you, Dad!!!!!!!!! I can't wait to grow up in this great land we call the United States of America!!!!!

Happy Independence Day Dad. I love you as big as all those fireworks I'm gonna see tonight!!! Well, "Off we go, into the wild blue yonder......." Mom says that's your Air Force song!!! I like it!!

Lovebug Hugs,
Your Son, Connor

Sunday, July 02, 2006

I miss you daddy!!!!!

Me and Daddy having some snuggle time..... How do you like my Elvis impression lips...."Thank You, Thank You Very Much"!!!! Hee Hee :-)

Hey Dad, your nose looks pretty tempting.....maybe I should take a bite....Ok, I won't bite you, I'll just nuzzle in close so I can feel you breathe!!! I love you daddy!!!

Me and Daddy in the airplane wing of Children's Hospital!!! That's a super cool plane on the wall, but my Daddy flys bigger plane's than that!!!! In fact, he is in one of those big airplanes right now on his way to Germany. Be safe when you fly Daddy. I can't wait to have you home at the end of the week. We miss you!!! Oh yeah, and Abbey wanted me to tell you that she's looking forward to your return too. She likes going on walks with me and mama, but she says mama throws that bumper like a girl and she misses the way you throw it to her and tell her to "fetch it up!" Plus, Abbey needs a bath and mama's too embarrassed to bring the shampoo with her down to the pond. Come back soon Daddy, we're fallin' apart without you!!!! Just kidding, we're doing great!!!

5 1/2 Hours Later.......

Our G-tube tragedy is history......We spent 5 1/2 hours up at Children's in the ER to no avail. Would you believe that after we got all the way up there, went through all the paperwork and initial assessment, the only interventional radiologist that they have is on vacation. So, they gave me an option of being admitted and waiting a couple of days until the IR doc returned or simply switching giving his meds through the J-port of his GJ-Tube. I'm sure you can guess which option I chose. We are back home again and everything is just fine.

The ER doc on call today was able to re-inflate the balloon that keeps the GJ-Tube in tact and that seems to have helped. If we still have problems, then I will switch the meds to the other port and go back to the hospital once the IR doc is back. While we were there in the ER, the nurse was able to suction out Little Bug's nose and lower throat area which relieved him of a lot of congestion, so all was not lost in our day trip to Children's.

On the way home Connor and I ran a couple of errands (one of which was Costco and Connor did great!!!) and now we are back home enjoying the back porch and the nice breeze. We heard from daddy by phone while we were at the hospital. He felt terrible that we were back there, but grateful it was only a short stay. He is still fighting off the terrible cold he left with and is very tired. He will be back with us at the end of the week and we can't wait!!!

Well, off to put away the Costco supplies and give Little Bug a cool bath. More from Little Bug's nest later, but for now...

Lovebug Hugs,

G-Tube is leaking!!!!!!!

Well, it's Sunday morning and Connor and I had a little snuggle time out on the back deck in the morning sun. It was great to listen to the birds sing and to cuddle my little bug. After coming inside to do our usual AM routine with meds and feeding bag changes and so on I noticed an orange glow coming from Little Bug's G-Tube site. Sure enough, I opened up his clothes to find the dressing completely soaked with all of his morning meds and a constant drip of stomach acids. So, I called the doc and he said, "Well, it looks like you're going back to Children's ER today!!!" My heart sank. Why can't we stay away from that place. I mean c'mon, we love everyone up there, but we want to stay at home!!!! UUUGGGGHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!

So, I just got the beds made, the dog fed, the lawn and flowers watered and now it's off to the ER. I will hopefully keep you posted this afternoon or evening on how our day went. Hopefully, this will just be a day trip and there will be no overnight required!!!

Lovebug Hugs,