Tyson Hugh Hooper

Tyson Hugh Hooper
Our son, Tyson Hugh Hooper, was born with coarctation of the aorta, hypoplastic arch, and a transitional avsd. His first open heart surgery reconstructed his aorta and was on day 9 of life. His second open heart repair was not anticipated to be needed until two or three years of age. Ty had other plans. We spent the vast majority of his first 3 months of life at Vanderbilt as he went into heart failure and was diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension. As a result, the medical team concluded that he needed the repair much sooner than usually recommended, and at just shy of 3 months old Ty underwent his second life saving open heart surgery. God has already worked so many miracles in Ty's life and the life of our family and we know he is using our story. Because of this, we are grateful for Ty's special heart and feel beyond blessed that God chose us to travel this road. We ask for prayers as Ty continues to heal. We are praying for a full recovery and life without restrictions for Ty. We are praying for God to use our family and Ty for His glory.

Thank you to each and every person who supports us through prayer, giving, or just by loving on our family! We are humbled and blessed by all of the ways the Lord is providing for us and know that he is using Ty and his story to do great things!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Growing like a weed... 9 months

Ava Grace,

You are growing like a weed.  A beautiful, incredibly smart, and wildly active weed, lol.  You are all about exploring and want to look at, in, and under everything.  You inspect everything, big and small, and have a knack for taking things apart!  You tear the doors off your toy barn and hippo off your play table.  You like to bang these together and against the wall and the couch and the table.  You are a little on the destructive side, but for now we think it's funny.

With the addition of some hair, a total of 4 teeth, and several new skills, you are looking particularly grown up bigger. You love to walk behind your stroller!  You haven't figured out how to turn it, so you walk it across the room until you run into something and then you sit down and play for a while.

Speaking of strolling, you love to stroll.  Actually, you love to do anything outside!  We really like taking you to the park or the lake and enjoying outside time with you.  When you are outside you never ever fuss or sleep!  You are busy looking at everything there is to see.  You also like when the wind blows... you always smile and sometimes even giggle.

You are so very expressive!  Your eyebrows work overtime and seem to change direction and angle with every look.  You furrow your brows, scrunch up your nose, pucker your lips, and breath really loud when you aren't getting exactly what you want.  It's pretty funny.

You have been pulling up and cruising around furniture for a while now.  Your most recent accomplishment is standing up by yourself and you are getting better at it with every passing day!  This big achievement came on the heels of...
...waving hello (more than goodbye) and clapping your hands!  We are adding table food to your diet.  You would have none of it until Dr. Johnson told us we needed to start encouraging table food.  I guess you were waiting for doctor's orders, because now you are excited to try new things.  You really like Ritz crackers and yogurt.  You also seem to like puffs and yogurt melts okay... I think the real attraction is feeding yourself.  You also like to drink water and diluted juice from your sippy cup.  You have mastered that skill so well, that Daddy and I are discussing putting your formula in your sippy cup so that you can start feeding yourself your bottle sometimes.  We tried it the other day and you liked it just fine!

Koozies and cook books have joined the list of your favorite toys.  You have a new love for baby dolls and you go crazy for Minnie Mouse.  You saw a large stuffed Minnie when we were in Walmart the other day with Aunt Sarah and Grandmommy and we pretty much thought she was going to have to go home with us!

You still love your sister more than life itself and when the two of you are together it is like no one else exists.  You squeal and giggle and babble as soon as you see her and follow her around everywhere.  You get almost as excited when Daddy gets home from work.  You kick your legs and swing your arms excitedly and reach for Daddy to pick you up.  Sometimes you even give a hug and kiss, another new skill you have picked up.

You are still a Mama's girl though... my sweet doodlebug.  We spend our days together.  You are my little sidekick through laundry and cooking and games of peek-a-boo and story time.  My days and my heart are full of you and I wouldn't change a thing.  I would tell you to stop growing so fast, but as much as I want you to stay little forever, I am enjoying each an every new stage and new accomplishment as they come.

We love you doodlebug!  You fill our life with Joy!

(and Daddy and Lily)