Posted (jooosh) in All Posts on March-29-2008

Ella started the day feeding well, and Tina and I finished the day feeding well.

Miss Ella rocked down a whole bottle of food today!!! Yup, she took in the entire 75ccs during her 9 o’clock feed!!! What an incredibly exciting milestone. It was a bit of a bonus for me too because I just happened to be the one feeding her =). This is a huge first step towards our goal of having her take in a whole bottle every time she eats. During her next feed though, she only did about 20ccs, but we are content with the overall forward progress she’s making.

Tina, Ella, and I just got back from dinner at Maggiano’s. “But Josh…”, you say. “There is no Maggiano’s in Gainesville.” Oh, you are so correct my friend. You see, we all had such a great time escaping Gainesville last week, that we decided to do it again. Only this time we ventured out to Jacksonville.

The drive out to Jacksonville was pretty uneventful, except for one green light. Well, it was a red light when Tina decided to take a drink of her iced coffee. It turned green right when she started to take a sip. Having no idea that she was even drinking from a large mouthed mug (she was in the back seat with Bun), I do what every normal driver does at a green light and hit the gas. Needless to say, Tina wasn’t too thrilled about the coffee all over the front of her white shirt, but at least she brought a sweater that she can wear over…oh…whoops…she just spilled formula from Ella’s g-tube on the sweater. Ahhh…good times.

So, what was our main draw to Jacksonville? I’ll give you one guess…yup…a mall. More specifically, the St Johns Town Center Mall which is an outdoor mall with a lot of chichi retail outlets. Not that we did any shopping (Ella did try and convince us that Louis Vuitton had baby clothes), but the fact that we could stroll around outside, in the fresh air, on a picture perfect day, with the Bun.

We started at one end of the mall and worked our way down to the other. We originally thought we were going to get some food to go from Maggiano’s, but we discovered they had an outdoor seating area which would accommodate us and minimize Ella’s exposure. What really made us feel comfortable about eating there was the corner they were able to tuck us into, and the fact that Tina could stroll Ella right to the table from outside, without even entering the main restaurant.

Ella handled herself well, and didn’t fuss too much, at least until her feeding time around 9pm. We were able to discreetly bolus feed her through her G-Tube which in turn gave her good reason to fall asleep. Tina and I were then able to finish up dinner, with Ella sleeping contently next to us. We had a fabulous time enjoying the moment and the food. Maggiano’s is my favorite Italian restaurant (chain), plus, we didn’t have to pay for dinner because one of Ella’s biggest fans hooked us up with a gift card (Thanks for the love Jeanie!!).

At this moment (1:00am), Tina is asleep next to me, and the Bun is asleep in her travel crib. We’re staying overnight in Jacksonville and will drive back to the apartment tomorrow.

Something that struck me during dinner tonight (this happens on a pretty regular basis), is really how far we’ve come, and what a true miracle Ella Renae is. It’s so hard for me to imagine all that we’ve been through. If we didn’t have this blog, with its daily record of events, I don’t know I would believe all we have been through. But we have…and we are so blessed to have gone through it.

Thank you again for staying with us during this journey. You faithfulness in support and prayer continues to be our strength. It means so much that you connect with us through the blog on a regular basis. May God Bless you and your family in your faithfulness to Him, and to us.

Psalm 100
A psalm. For giving thanks.
1 Shout for joy to the LORD, all the earth.

2 Worship the LORD with gladness;
come before him with joyful songs.

3 Know that the LORD is God.
It is he who made us, and we are his;
we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.

4 Enter his gates with thanksgiving
and his courts with praise;
give thanks to him and praise his name.

5 For the LORD is good and his love endures forever;
his faithfulness continues through all generations.

The Roberts Family on March 29th, 2008 at 10:26 pm #

There are worse stains than formula! Glad to see Ella doing so well and that you all enjoyed your day away. Keep it up, Ella! We read and pray for you every day.

Pat & Bob Hadden on March 29th, 2008 at 11:08 pm #

So nice to see Ella’s progress over the last few weeks. We think of you although we don’t write on the blog that often, but we check every day. Much love,
Pat & Bob

Joel Snyder on March 30th, 2008 at 1:45 am #

Ella, Wow you are one traveling girl. I am so happy that you got that whole bottle down in one session and keep the steady progress up. I am praying for you and your Mom and Dad it sounds like the three of you are starting to make real progress and that means coming home soon. You have a wonderful weekend and I will check on you later. Love,Grandpa,Taco,&Manny

Anne on March 30th, 2008 at 7:52 am #

Like Pat & Bob – I don’t post much, but visit every day! Looks like travel agrees with Ella (or was it Maggiano’s?) What a great escape for you guys! (I see a re-visit in your future!)

tara hayes on March 30th, 2008 at 9:30 am #

is it just me or is ella starting to fill out a little the past few days? i could just smooch those sweet baby cheeks! she has got to be the cutest baby ever…

The Lizotte Family on March 30th, 2008 at 10:19 am #

All girls Love Louis Vuitton. Such a fashion Diva, I love her. She really is getting bigger we can see her face taking a new shape. I think kids do that until they are done growing.
Enjoy your time in Florida.

Laura Marold on March 30th, 2008 at 10:22 am #

Did I mention I work in childcare? OXYCLEAN for formula stains!!! It works great. I even buy blankets at the ALTV thrift store for work. Many of the blankets have formula stains that the owner just gave up on. I use oxyclean (you can even make a paste). I then use bleach on them and they come out perfect. I gravitate to the white ones so they can be bleached as well. Then I leave them soaking in fabric softener overnight to get out all the chemicals and many times they turn out perfect!! This also works for white baby clothes and white Mom and Dad clothes. Can you tell I’m a clean freak? Josh, I’m so with you. I sometimes have a hard time believing things are going so well now. I do keep all three of you in my prayers each day because I know it’s still very hard–at least now there are some very big plusses like lots of baby smiles. Love, Laura M.

John & Estela Williams on March 30th, 2008 at 11:11 am #

I read your blog every day, just haven’t written lately… been a little busy. Love the last photo of Ella and the one Tina and Ella were napping… what precious moments. You all look great and it awesome how God has blessed you all with eachother. Love you guys!

Deb Carnsew on March 30th, 2008 at 12:16 pm #

I too love Ella’s beautiful smiles and your daily blog and the strength and courage that it sends to all of us. She is amazing and truly blessed to have such loving and giving parents. God Bless.

Jim and Char Jordan on March 30th, 2008 at 5:06 pm #

You know if I had not been through this journey at a distance, for sure, I am not so sure that beautiful little girl would impress me as a fighter and survivor. Nor would I see such valiant behavior shown daily from you and Josh. You are great. Good idea to get away from the daily slog. It should be refreshing in a way. Keep up the good work. We are praying for you all. LOL Aunt Char and Jim

Janiss Robles (Philippines) on March 30th, 2008 at 10:40 pm #

C – You’re soooo Cute and full of Charm!
Sending you our love and prayers,
Janiss and family

Tracy Schultz on March 31st, 2008 at 11:58 am #

Get some Biz for those stains! It takes out (even dried) formula! :0)
It’s so good to read that she’s out and about and that you guys can have an evening together. A new locale can make a world of difference in your mood! I remember when we were able to successfully have a meal out of the house with a baby. It was like we were back in the land of the living!:0)
So glad to hear of her progress!
Take care,

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