Friday, April 6, 2012

We are Moving Home!

I have been waiting to type those words for a while! We have prayerfully decided to return home this summer after three great years in Chicago. While we have loved our time here our hearts are so excited to be home with family & friends. When I think back over the last three years I can't even comprehend how much I have grown and changed. Nothing makes you grow up faster than living far from the familiar & your loved ones. Sean and I constantly say how grateful we are for our time here, it was definitely "our time". It was a time where the Lord grew us in his Love, showed us to trust in His plan & go with the flow when things change (which they always do). I love that Sean & I were able to start out our marriage with just us & the Lord. There were so many times where we just had to seek the Lord's will and figure things out for ourselves. No running home, no hiding out at friends or family's houses, just us. Chicago will always be such a special place for us & we hope to visit often.
We still have lots of fun details to figure out before our move (June 2nd!) but I have faith that they will all fall into place. (In my typical OCD fashion I've already started packing.)

Here is a list of things I will miss most about Chicago -
1. My friends - I've made some incredible friends while we have lived here, some of them I've worked with for 3 years now and my life is not going to be the same without them. They are such great girls & I get really sad when I think of not seeing them everyday.
2. My Job - I know that I am still relatively new to the working world but I've had some pretty terrible jobs in the past & I know how rare it is to truly enjoy your job. Even though I may complain on bad days I truly do love my job & have learned so much. It's not very common to love your job, love your work environment & love the people you work with. I am going to miss PRG & am so grateful for everything they have taught me.
3. Quality Time With Sean - Sean and I have been able to spend so much quality time by ourselves. Our weekends pretty much consist of hanging out with each other & it's been something I've learned to cherish. I remember when we first moved here it was so strange for Sean and I to have so much time with just the two of us, without family or friends around. It was almost like we didn't know how to do life without lots of other people around. But now it's weird for us if we don't have lots of intentional time together. I pray we would be very conscious of how we spend our time once we are back home & still have lots of date nights :)

Now here are the things that I am most excited about once we are home -
1. Family & Friends - I can't even describe how happy I am that we will be close to our family and friends. My family lives in NWA and Sean's sisters & nephews live in Tulsa (which is just a short drive away). For the most part, most of our friends are in Arkansas ( a few live in other states but we are petitioning that they move home soon too). Some of the big things I am excited about are being able to go to our nieces and nephews birthdays, games - just being there for their big life events. They are growing up so fast & it's definitely been hard missing out on that stuff the last 3 years.
2. Our Church - I seriously can't put into words how excited I am that we will be able to attend Fellowship again. We've been able to experience some great churches in IL but to be able to worship in our home church again is just so exciting. To get plugged into a community group, to do life with fellow believers & to get to experience wonderful worship (Brooke Ceola)..almost too much for my hear to take in!
3. All Things Southern - I figured it was easier to sum up the things we have missed by saying all things southern : ) in no particular order: sonic happy hour, people saying yes sir/ma'am , not so many crazy drivers, Tim's pizza with ranch on the side, Razorback sporting events, Fayetteville in the fall, my parent's neighborhood, clean Walmarts, fly fishing on the White River (that's really more Sean's thing), etc.

We love you all and can't wait to see you in Arkansas this summer!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

The Girls are Coming, the Girls are coming!

Next weekend most of this crew will be here....

To Celebrate this Young Lady's upcoming Wedding!
(You're welcome Jen)
Hopefully, there will be more great pictures like the below, Rachel is bringing her old recital costumes for us.

In other fun news, Annie has officially moved to the city & I got to see her this past week. We had dinner with her and her "friend" this past Tuesday & even stayed out until midnight. The next day was a little rough but totally worth it!

Sean starts classes this week, I'm a little sad because I know this will mean I will see him less but as always I know he will do great. We even did a little back to school shopping the night we went to dinner with Annie, he is a pretty cute student if I do say so myself.

Found this fun pic of me and Sean from our beach trip, apparently we only took this picture of the two of us. Gotta get better about that!

Hope everyone has a great week!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

A Very Fun Weekend

I can't believe it is already Sunday night but Sean and I had such a fun and relaxing weekend.

The week was kind of a whirlwind - he got home Tuesday morning at 6:30 after traveling for about 24 hours. I was so happy to have him home - we got to catch up for about 30 min and then I had to head to work. We spent the rest of the week just catching up and listening to each others stories. I'll have to post some pictures later from his adventure in Alaska, it was such a cool trip! Work was good this week, really busy but good. I'm always learning something new and taking on more responsibility. I'm very blessed to have this job and it is great to be able to walk around Chicago in the summer time, it's been in the 70s here and feels amazing outside. And now that Sean is finally home I've been catching up on some much needed sleep. One of the downfalls of him being out of town is that I do not sleep well or at all. I had been getting 3-4 hours of sleep each night and now that he is home I've been sleeping like a baby! (Even sleep in till 11:00 on Saturday and I haven't done that in a long time)

This is the shirt Sean brought me back from Alaska, to say it's tacky is an understatement. I guess this is true love. I can already tell he is going to try to wear this somewhere.

Friday Night -
We went to our favorite Italian restaurant in Naperville, La Sorella. We had an amazing meal and I got to hear more fishing and bear stories from Alaska. After the movie we walked around downtown for a while and then headed to the movie theater to see The Help. I loved the book, honestly couldn't put it down and have been so excited for the movie. I really enjoyed the movie, they definitely changed some things from the book but overall very good. I did think that some of the southern accents could have used a little work. Some characters sounded very authentic where others sounded very forced. I think when you are from the south you know what real accents sound like. Sean even said he enjoyed the movie as well which is big because it didn't have any super hero characters or fast car chases.

Saturday we (really just me) slept in till 11, it was glorious. After that Sean and I headed to downtown Wheaton for a run/walk. He ran, I did a walk/run combo (which is really more walking than anything). The trails have been great to get my ankle use to running again because they are made up of crushed lime stone and it's very soft to run on. We got done with our run just in time because a huge thunderstorm moved thru the area. Below is pic I took when we were done, there is a really cool bride that overlooks the train tracks and you can see part of the clouds moving in.

After our run we went to Target for groceries. I even managed not to get distracted in the clothes section and just stuck to our list. Sean describes me as a bit of a wanderer when we go to Target - I've tried explaining that is part of the Target experience is just to wander around the store until you find something that catches your eye. Luckily for him we stayed on task. We did end up purchasing the new Skinny Girl Sangria which is pretty tasty.

Sunday we went to church and then headed to Trader Joes to buy stuff for Sean's yummy red beans and rice dinner. The kid can cook - this is definitely one of my favorite meals that he makes, especially in the winter when it's freezing out.

Sean is currently getting back into school mode which makes me a little sad that it's already starting up. I'm always so proud of how much he studies and how much dedication he has but I also know that means there will be a lot of time spent writing papers, reading, etc. I can be a little bit of a distraction to his work sometimes but overall I try not to pester him too much when he is studying.

Sean working on one of his professor's syllabus
(Side note - he is not wearing capris just has his sweats pulled up)

A fun find of the weekend was the below picture of me and Miss Lily. I found this picture in an old planner. This was the first time we met. Melts my heart to think of how little she use to be and how big she is getting. My sister says she changes everyday and I hate missing out on all of it but I know we will always be close no matter how far a part we are.

Hope everyone had a great weekend!

Monday, August 8, 2011

I'm A Bad Blogger

Not really a surprise but I really am a bag blogger. It's been 4 months since my last post and I've thought about posting so many different stories lately but can't decide on one. So I will do what I do best and do a quick recap. Last time I posted I was about to get my cast off - well, I did get it off the very next day and have been getting back to life! It took about two weeks in my walking boot on crutches, then I went down to one crutch (everyone in my office called this the "Tiny Tim" walk from a Christmas Carole - it was pretty funny), then to a just the boot and then to the brace and then finally I'm free of all supportive devices.

Sean called me robo cop while I was in the boot - love him and his jokes

I wake up every day grateful that I can walk by myself, get in the shower or walk across the street. Truly, truly blessed to do these things. I even ran this past week for the first time. It wasn't pretty or fast - it kinda looked like a combination of Kermit the Frog and Phoebe from friends but it was amazing to have the ability back.
I'm still on the blood thinners and will be until Feb. They have been testing me to see if I am predisposed to blood clots. The first time they tested me I had a protein and an antibody come back irregular but if you are on birth control or have a blood clot (which I had both at the time) it can cause the test to have a false positive. So this past week they retested my antibody to see if was back to normal but it still came back irregular or as they call it "positive". So now I'm on the blood thinners until Feb - not really happy about the news, I was really looking forward to stopping the medicine in Sept. The biggest pain is that I have to get my levels tested every 2-3 weeks. They will retest my antibody in Feb, not really sure if anything will come back different but at that stage they will take me off the blood thinners and talk about what I need to do long term. I've really handled the news pretty well, the only scary part of the doctor appt. was when my hematologist told me that women who have multiple miscarriages tend to have irregular antibodies like mine - she said it's not certain that I will just because I have an irregular antibody but still scary to hear. For now, I'm trusting the Lord and just having faith that all things will work out in His timing.

In May Sean and I got to go home for 11 days, which was such a wonderful gift. My work was doing a test in the Fayetteville Walmart so I got to work from our Bentonville office for an entire week. While we were in town I got to help throw a shower for Jennifer Walker, celebrate my sweet sister's birthday and see Sean's sister and her boys. It was amazing to be home, see our family and friends and feel at peace. The chaos of all my medical drama caused quite a bit of anxiety in me during the spring (and that is putting it nicely) and to feel the peace of home, of my parents house and of my friends hugs made things so much better. I even got to go to Fellowship for church and I can't describe the peace of that place, I just know it's good for my soul.
Sean was also extremely happy because we got to eat at his favorite place, Mr. B's in Rogers and he ate an entire plate of their ribs. It's a pretty cute pic of him if I do say so myself.

Handsome Husband

I also got into a painting kick and painted canvasses & stools for our nieces and nephews. They were really fun to work on and turned our really good. Sean even helped me pick out colors and quotes.

Mr. Luke's Painting - "Let the Wild Rumpus Begin" - from the movie Where the Wild Things Are. If you know Luke, then this quote makes perfect sense.

Lane's Painting - I really liked how the colors looked together
Lily's Stool - I've painted each of my nieces stools over the years and I figured Lily needed one too, it turned out super cute.

In July we went to the beach with my family and it was amazing. Sean and I hadn't been to a beach since our honeymoon and we were beyond excited. We were suppose to go the year before but with the oil spill we ended up cancelling our trip. Luckily, Sean and I were able to fly - we didn't get into FL until midnight on Friday and woke up at 6:30am on Sat because we were so excited to be at the beach. All 9 of us stayed in one house in Rosa beach, a little past Destin which is our normal vacationing spot. It was truly one of the best weeks of my life, we would wake up around 8:30 or 9:00 and head straight to the beach and not leave until 5:00. (Side note - even with my ultra sheet SPF 70 sunscreen my skin still freaked out because of all the sunshine, I developed a lovely sun rash as I like to call it but I never actually burned - my skin was not use to that much sunshine it just didn't know what to do, hahha - Sean on the other hand wore SPF 30 and got so dark it was ridiculous - please see below for a comparison of our skin tones - I pray our children have his skin color). We only went out to dinner a couple times and cooked the rest of the week at our house. It was so nice to spend time with our family and have no work or school worries. We watched movies at night or played games. My nieces are growing up so fast, it's hard thinking that we are missing a lot but it made me very grateful for the week I got with them. So very thankful and blessed that my parents took us all for the week. I had a difficult time coming home to cloudy and noisy Chicago but there will definitely be more beach trips in the future.

Beautiful beach

My Lily Pad

Silly Sisters

Sweet Family

My white skin and my tan husband

August has already been pretty busy for us. We went to the Dupage County fair with our friends Tim and Shawna, it was so much fun. It was like we were back home, pig races, livestock, rides, games, etc. Not as country as the Benton country fair but still pretty fun and we had some good laughs. We are very thankful for our friendship with Tim and Shawna, by far some of the coolest and smartest people we know and they are expecting their first child, they will be amazing parents!

The first weekend in August my sweet friend Chelsea (Who is still listed in my phone as Chel B - her maiden name) and her husband came to visit for the weekend and we had a blast with them. Chris had just finished taking the law bar exam and was in much need of a break from all his hard work. Sean made his famous pasta and sauce Friday night and then Sat we went out shopping and to a comedy show in the city and then to our favorite restaurant in the city, the Athenian Room - the best Greek food you will ever have. It was so much fun to just catch up and enjoy our time together. We had so much fun just walking around the city and enjoying the beautiful evening. Chelsea and Chris are currently living in Tulsa and have been dealing with 100 + temperatures for a long time so a cool Chicago night was heavenly to them. Chelsea is one of those friends that it doesn't matter how long it's been since we've seen each other - our conversations just picks up where it last ended. Just a wonderful and faithful friend. Miss her already.

Sean left that Sunday at 3:45 in the morning for Alaska and I even got up and drove him to the airport. He and his dad went on a fly fishing trip and he is just now getting home tomorrow at 5am. I am so ready to see this kid. We were only able to email this past week and a half. It was pretty weird not seeing my husband or being able to talk to him. Even though I missed him like crazy and had to drive myself to and from the train everyday I was so excited that he got to go on this trip and have this experience with his dad, truly a once in a life time sort of thing. I may even try to get him to blog about it when he is back. He definitely deserved a treat after everything he did while taking care of me back in the Spring. I also have to brag on him a bit because he did really good before he left - he knows that I am not a fan of staying by myself so he left me lots of surprises before he left. Below are some pics of my surprises. Little and big things like this remind me how blessed I am to have him as a husband.

Surprise # 1 Homemade chocolate cake - it will change your life

Surprise # 2 The 2nd book in the hunger games
Not going to lie - I got totally hooked and can't wait to see the movies

Surprise # 3 New Essie nail polish

Surprise # 4 Last but not least... A new longchamp bag, I was completely shocked that he remembered me saying I wanted a black one for the winter..he is a keeper

That is basically everything that has been going on with us. The girls are coming in town for Jen's bach party at the end of August and that will be a blast - I'll be sure to post a recap after that weekend.

We love and miss you all - Love, Mik

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Spring Is Coming!

I am beyond excited that Spring has almost arrived in Chicago! This winter was extremely long and we are so ready for sunshine and warm weather! One thing I didn't know until I lived here is that during the winter the sun starts setting at 3:30 and it is dark by 4:30 so the fact that the sun is out when I leave work now is just a huge blessing - I've been continually thanking God when I leave for his gift of sunshine!

In honor of Spring arriving I talked Mr. DeWitt into purchasing some cute new hand towels from Target this past Saturday. As a result of our graduate school budget we don't do much shopping so these cute hand towels made my day - they are definitely brightening up the kitchen!

Also, some of my amazing and sweet friends have been sending me little get well goodies! I forgot how much fun it is to receive letters and gifts in the mail! Jenny-Pepper Walker and her awesome fiance Will S. sent me a cup cake kit from Saint Cupcakes - - it was so fun! It was three freshly baked cupcakes, icing and sprinkles. It came with a super cute note and fun instructions - I meant to take a picture of the cupcakes but....we pretty much ate them right on the spot so I only got a picture of the cute instruction sheet.

And then on Friday I got a great get well package from Brooke C.
She sent me some magazines, fun note cards, my favorite candy - Hot Tamales and a super sweet note! Just love me some Brooke - miss her and her beautiful baby Stella!

And last but not least my dear friend Amy A.'s mom sent me a super sweet note telling me she had been praying for me and hoped I was feeling better. I love Amy's mom Debs - she is the best and I love her to pieces! I feel very blessed by my friends and their families! My group of girlfriends are all close with each others moms and I love them all so much!

Fun side note - I am suppose to get my cast off tomorrow (praying that this will happen and they won't put me back in another cast), my mom is arriving tomorrow afternoon and my sister will be here on Thursday! Yea for a fun week with family!

Hope everyone has a great week!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Professor DeWitt....Well almost!

Exciting news for the DeWitt household!

Sean taught his first lecture today at Wheaton College. One of his current Grad Professors asked him to teach her class on Jansenism (17th & 18th Century Catholic Reform movement in France). He had written a paper on the topic over the summer and she liked it so much that she asked him to teach the class! And on Thursday evening he will teach her graduate class on the same subject! I'm so proud of this kid!

Of course I had to take a quick picture of him before he left the house - he will definitely be the most stylish professor out there when he is done with school!

Continually blessed and amazed by this guy-I also forgot to mention in my last post that we celebrated our two year anniversary on March 21st. Really can't believe it's already been 2 years-looking forward to what God has in store for us.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Where to Begin...

Where to begin friends -
To say that it's been a crazy month would be an understatement.

Earlier this month Sean and I flew to Breckenridge, CO with his family for a quick ski trip. We had been looking forward to this for a long time! Needless to say I did not participate in the skiing but I did enjoy some time reading, watching movies and I spent a day at the spa. We had a great time with our family, ate at some really great restaurants and I got to have lunch with Blake and Amy Area one day which was so much fun! Sean had a great time skiing, he's pretty good from what I hear and loved just getting to relax.
While we were there I had some discomfort or cramping in my right leg (which is the broken ankle leg). The pain was in the back of my calf and I didn't think much about it because it wasn't where my leg was broken and just thought it was a muscle cramp from being in the cast. The day we flew home the pain was a lot worse, I've never wanted to get off a plane so bad in my life. I honestly just thought my leg was tired from being down all day (usually I try to elevate it as much as possible) but with a 2 hour flight and a 2 hour car ride from Breckenridge to Denver my leg was not happy.
We got home Wednesday night and I woke up in the middle of the night with the same intense pain, still thought it was muscle cramps and went to work the next day. Same thing happened on Thursday night and finally on Friday morning after I realized my toes were starting to turn pink when I stood up we called our Orthopedic doctor and his nurse told us to go to the ER because it might be a blood clot. Not really the news you want to hear but we handled it pretty well and got ourselves over to the local ER. We spent about 5 hours in the ER, they had to cut off my cast and do an ultrasound of my entire right leg to check for blood clots. They didn't find any blood clots on the ultrasound and we were very relieved - nobody was really able to explain the leg pain expect for muscle cramps. With my cast cut off I was put in a temporary splint for the rest of the weekend until Monday when we would go to see our Orthopedic doc and he would have to put a new cast on.
So Monday rolled around and we went to the Orthopedic doc for a new cast (and at this point I was about 1 week away from getting my cast completely removed and being put in a walking boot. A few people at the ER even mentioned that I would probably get put in my walking boot early since I was only a week out so I was really excited about that possibility.) When the doctor came in to review the X-rays with us he told us that they found a second broken bone in my ankle that they did not originally know about. (Sean later told me he was very proud of me for not crying in that moment) I had not only broken the outer bone but also the inner bone (Fibula and Tibia) and as a result I would have to be in a cast for 3 more weeks. Again, not the news we wanted to hear but we handled it pretty well, I made Sean take me to Chick-fil-A afterward for breakfast to ease the pain and disappointment. So I had a new cast put on and was back to work.
For the rest of the week my leg was pretty sore because I was in a new cast which was super tight and made my toes swell up but I no longer had the crazy leg pain so I thought we were done with all the crazy medical drama. Turns out I was wrong.
I started noticing that at night I was having this weird chest discomfort, it's wasn't necessarily sharp pain but it was just uncomfortable and it woke me up every night that week. I felt like I was going crazy because typically I am a very healthy person and never have anything wrong and it didn't make any sense for me to be having chest pain. I thought that maybe it was in my head and I was making it up but finally after the fourth night of it I made an appointment with a doctor to have it checked out. At the appointment all my levels and stats were normal, the doctor thought it was probably heart burn from all the Ibuprofen that I was taking for my leg. She took some blood just to rule out any possible issues and I felt pretty good when we left. When my results came back the next day they were higher than normal (I can't even tell you what test it was or what my results were but I just know that they weren't normal). We went to the doctor the next day which was a Saturday and thankfully our same doctor was working. She assured me that even though my levels weren't normal it could be a number of things and it didn't necessarily mean it was something serious but she did order a CAT scan just to rule out the possibility of a blood clot (I think she really just did it because I looked so frantic and scared). So off to the same hospital Sean and I went and I had the CAT scan. At this point I'm so frustrated with myself and start thinking I've made up all the symptoms and that I'm now wasting more money and our Saturday in the hospital. Sean was so great and supportive the whole time and was so patient with me. When the test results were ready they put us in a room and our same doctor called to tell us that they in fact did find blood clots in both my lungs and that I would be taken down to the ER and pumped with blood thinners. I of course, being an emotional wreck, started crying and it really wasn't from fear but just relief that I wasn't going crazy. They think that the blood clot started in my leg (the crazy pain I had in the back of my leg) and that by the time they did the ultrasound it had moved up to my lungs). So after the call they wheeled me down to the ER, took an insane amount of blood so they can test to see if I'm predisposed to blood clots or if was just a result of the flying and started me on blood thinners. We ended up staying the night at the hospital just so they could monitor my levels.
We got home Sunday from the hospital and slept the entire afternoon - we were beyond exhausted. I had to share a room with an elderly Italian woman at the hospital named Ida and she snored like a freight train and continually set off her heart monitor during the night & since Ida was a female Sean wasn't allowed to sleep in the room with me - he had to sleep on a couch in the lobby. Needless to say we didn't get much sleep that night.
I worked from home on Monday since I was still pretty tired from the weekend and then went in to the office on Tuesday and Wednesday. Since I'm now on blood thinners I have to get my blood levels checked everyday until they reach the therapeutic level so we have been to doctor's office everyday this week, I now know all the names of the nurses who work in the diagnostic lab and my arms look like I have an illegal recreational habit.
On Thursday we had an actual appointment with the doctor and she reviewed all of my blood work and was happy with how my levels were progressing. It was a really good appointment, we got to ask her lots of questions since this blood clot thing is completely foreign to us - we really just wanted to understand what we need to do in order for me to heal quickly. At the appointment I told her that I felt like I was starting to get a cold and asked if she would just check it out. Sure enough, turned out that I have an upper respiratory infection and double ear infection. Again, not the news we wanted but I am now on some serious antibiotics and already feel a lot better.

So this is where we have been, it's been beyond a wild month but I am so thankful for my wonderful husband who has continued to serve and take care of me through this stuff. It's been pretty overwhelming and scary at times but during those moments all we can do is pray and turn things over to God because there is no way we can handle this stuff on our own. We are also so thankful for our family and friends who have continued to pray for us and check in on us. My sweet Caroline even sent me flowers when I got home from the hospital! Sean's parents sent us extra gift cards for food & my parents sent us some money so we could hire a cleaning service for our house (I literally can't wait to scrub this house when I'm back on 2 legs). We are especially thankful for God's grace and guidance through all of this, I have to be honest and say I don't understand all of it but I continue to trust that He is doing a great work in us and hold on to Him.

Please continue to pray for us, for total healing and peace. That there would be no other health set-backs and we would just improve from here. And that I would get my cast off as expected on April 4th. Love you all and thank you for the prayers!