Sunday, September 30, 2007

Cora is Having Surgery

I've been debating about whether or not to post this on our blog, but I figured there are some friends and family we haven't had the chance to catch up with over the last several months...and it is unlikely that we will be able to talk to everyone we love in person before Cora's surgery on Friday. So, here is the quick version of what has happened to us over the past three+ months:

During Cora's 6-month appointment with her pediatrician we pointed out what we thought was an interesting (but cute!) dimple and crease at the top of Cora's buttock. Little did we know that this type of superficial mark can indicate underlying spinal issues. Our ped recommended that Cora have an ultrasound, which came back inconclusive. The next step was a MRI of her lower spine, which showed that she had a tethered spinal cord caused by a fatty deposit on her filam terminale (which is the "string" that hangs down below the spinal cord). A tethered spinal cord means that the spinal cord, which usually dangles freely, is attached or pulled so that it cannot move freely. We've seen a pediatric neurosurgeon in Birmingham, who is a great person and has a good reputation for treating this type of condition, and the news is good. Cora requires surgery to free (or untether) her spinal cord, but the surgery is one of the more simple surgeries that he performs, and has a very good outcome in terms of minimizing or preventing any long-term effects.

Cora's surgery is this Friday, October 5th. We will likely only have a one-night stay at the Children's Hospital associated with the University of Alabama, Birmingham. We hope to be home with Cora next Saturday.

Please keep her in your thoughts. We feel very lucky to have a great neurosurgeon as part of our team. And we are extremely optimistic that Cora will get through this like a champ.

Much love to everyone who has provided us with support during these last few months. And don't'll see photos of Cora doing fun autumn things very, very soon. She's going to be a monkey for Halloween!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Happy 10 Months, Cora!

Cora is studying the zoo map very intently (um, yes, her mom was a geography major).
Sock monkey is soooo tired.
....and so is Cora.

We went to Nashville for a little getaway this past weekend. Unfortunately, we forgot our camera for the more scenic shots (the Parthenon, Vanderbilt U., etc.), but we got some funny hotel and restaurant photos of Cora. We can't believe that she is already ten months old!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Bridges and Hills

A Labor Day visit from Grandma Debbie, Aunt Shi, and Uncle Steve! We took a stroll across the Walnut Street pedestrian bridge and ate lunch at a downtown restaurant. Cora isn't sure about heights yet. :) We miss you guys!

Good-bye Dear, Old Tree

We lost our Red Oak tree in our back yard over a week and a half ago due to an intense thunderstorm that slammed our neighborhood after weeks of drought conditions. The storm was short...and we didn't hear a thing (um, like a big 100-year old oak tree being uprooted). As you can see, the oak was held suspended in the air by our Hackberry tree and a neighbor's Maple tree (not shown). This photo doesn't do the tree justice in size and might. We had it cut down and much of it mulched last week. We will miss the old guy.