July update and a Huge Request

HI all,

Just wanted to give you a quick update on Mandy and make a huge request. She’s doing really well. Especially with her eating. We now have her eating schedule firmly set up in her regular schedule. Usually we present her with two or three small bowls of pureed food. The surprising thing is that she can pretty much eat anything as long as it doesn’t have milk in it. So, we’ve come up with all kinds of crazy combinations for example today she a vegetable soup with a piece of bread. What we do is take the food and purée it in a bullet mixer, and then add either broth or almond milk to thin it down to the correct consistency. Fortunately, one of our caregivers has taken responsibility to prepare Mandy’s food. The food will normally last three days.
The thing to remember is eating for Mandy is not just a physical experience. It’s also a social experience. What I mean is that we all sit down together and eat our food. And we talk to Mandy about what she’s eating, and what we’re eating. She gets extremely frustrated if she takes her bites and we don’t acknowledge it. Needless to say, this It has been a transition for us.

Now for the request…

Teresa and I and Mandy will be going to Anaheim California next month. Teresa and I have been asked to speak at podcast movement, one of the largest conferences of podcasters and related tech services in the country. We feel completely honored to have this opportunity to share our passion and make a difference.

All that being said, we have a great deal of money to raise ror airfare, hotel, and nursing care for Mandy during the event. So we set up a crowdfunding campaign to raise the necessary funds. We have some pretty awesome rewards for anyone who participates.

Every little bit helps. Even if you can’t donate at this time, please pray that God would provide the funds we need and share the link with your friends. We know who our source is.
Here’s the link: http://sbppodcast.com/cf
That’s all for now thank you for your prayers and continued support. We could not have gotten through everything we have if it had not been for the people that surrounded us

Love in Christ,
Michael, Teresa, and Mandy Blaes

PS if you have any questions or concerns or just want to make a comment, please feel free to leave it I the space provided below.

Mandy is One Step Closer to A Happy Meal

One Day Nearer to a happy meal

Hi guys, just wanted to give you a major update.

The school has been working with Mandy for about 6 months on her eating. I got permission from her Gastro Doctor to cut one tube feeding and replace it with a feeding by mouth.

I got a report a few weeks ago from her teacher about how well she is doing with it. She is pretty much doing all the feeding stuff on her own. She even whipes her face with a napkin.

The last time we tried to feed Mandy at home, we did not have the best results. She would throw a major fit. So we decided after some discussion with the speech therapist that it would be better to wait until the habit was fully integrated at school. Well that time is now.

About a week ago, I had a meeting with her teacher to discuss the situation. She told me that the school wanted us to start feeding her the one meal at home this summer so that her eating progress does not deteriorate. I have a home visit from her teacher, the speech therapist, and her principal to best figure out how to implement the feeding routine. Teresa and I are super excited about it.

So yesterday after Church we wanted to go out to lunch. I decided to take a chance and do her feeding by mouth. so I ordered her some apple sauce. She ate about half of it. She didn’t fuss or fight us or anything. Afterwards she wiped her mouth with the napkin. We were overjoyed.

I can remember times when we were told that she would never eat by mouth. So this is a major answer to prayer. I love it when God proves the so called experts wrong.

God is always faithful and he has proved it again and again. He will never let you down.

I have a dream that I have had even since Mandy was a baby. It may seem silly to you. But I dream of the day wnen I first take Mandy into a Mcdonalds and buy her first happy meal.

So now we are one step closer that happy meal.

Love in CHrist,
Michael and Teresa Blaes

Please feel free to comment below

October Update 2016

Hi All,

Long time I know.

Picture of Mandy BlaesI feel like I’ve let you all down. You were there for us at a very difficult time. There were times that we felt like we were going through the fires of hell itself, and I could always count on someone leaving a comment that would make our day.

But there came a time when we were being bombarded by everything that was going on in our life and we just began to crave a little more privacy. I’ve tried to be transparent as possible but there are a lot of details that I could not include here for legal reasons. I have been working on a book that I hope to finish within the year. The book will share a lot of the other details of our journey raising Mandy and dealing with other issues. I’ll share more about this as we get closer to the launch date.

That being said,

I am going to publish a new post on Mandy’s story at least once a month to catch you guys up. I will publish more often as things come up.

Mandy is doing amazingly well. She is growing by leaps and bounds. She is 54 pounds at her last Dr’s appointment. We thank God for what he is doing in her life. She is truly a gift.

We have moved to New Mexico and have enrolled Mandy in the School for the Blind here. She is doing so well there. We are so happy that we made the transition, even though it was difficult with all the paperwork and Medical Statements we had to get to make it happen. She was out of school for almost a month trying to get everything processed.

But that’s all behind us now…..

She has continued to develop her musical talent and can play about 20 songs or so. Its kind of cool on the weekend we wake up to her playing a new song on her keyboard. We fully intend to get her lessons, but just have not found the right person yet.

We are making some progress on her feeding. She has been cleared to eat double nectar thick foods now and the school is working on it every day. I have no doubt that she will be eating solid foods in the not-to distant future.

Thanks for all the prayers and support. We could not have come to this point without them.

We serve a Great God, an Awesome God and Please don’t forget it. He will bring you through your circumstances regardless of how hard they are. Believe me I know first-hand

Please feel free to leave a comment below and if you like this post share it

Love in Christ
Michael Teresa and Mandy Blaes

Proverbs 3:4-6 (ESV)
So you will find favor and good success[a]
in the sight of God and man.
Trust in the LORD with all your heart,
and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make straight your paths.


Mandy Hospitalized

Hi All,

My name is Adam Garcia. I am a close friend of the Blaes Family and Mike wanted me to post a message about what happened to Mandy last night.

It appears that Mandy had a seizure last night and has been admitted to the hospital for tests and observation. Please keep the Blaes Family in prayer, especially for Mandy’s healing, to give the Doctors wisdom, and the strength for the Blaes Family to get through this time of hardship. Please leave your public prayers and comments below.

Mandy Having Tummy Trouble

Hey Guys,

Merry Christmas!

I hope that you and yours are enjoying this holiday season.

Overall things are going well. Mandy just celebrated her third birthday, which is an amazing thing in itself. I can remember when we were unsure if Mandy would make it this far. She has surpassed all of ours and her doctor’s expectations. God has been incredibly good to us.

Still we are presented challenges, and we are going through one now.

Mandy was admitted into the hospital last night for stomach problems. She couldn’t keep anything down, not even Pedialyte. This is a dangerous condition, because she can easily dehydrate. So she was placed on IV fluids and is doing better. They have not restarted her feeds yet. The doctor told me that they were going to do some additional testing first to find out what kind of infection might be present. She will probably be there several days.

I cant say its fun, because frankly its not, especially since Mandy will not be home with us for Christmas. Frankly it sucks.

But God has his reasons, and I know that Mandy will recover. Please keep us in prayer in this time of trial, and I will keep you updated concerning Mandy’s condition.

Love in Christ,
Michael Blaes

PS. Please share your thoughts and prayers by clicking the comment link on this post. You have no idea how encouraging this is to us, especially during difficult times.

Mandy’s Cleft Palate Surgery; It finally happened

Hey Guys!  Long time no talk!

Im not going to make excuses about why I haven’t posted in a while, like….

Ive been very busy with Mandy’s care even though  it has

it sounds so much better than   the dog ate my blog post  do’n’t you think?

The truth is with so many people and eyeballs on us, it sometimes feels like you are in a fishbowl.  Mandy after surgery let me try to describe to you what that feels like.

When Mandy had her first heart surgery, Teresa and I stayed in the hospital with her for about 3 weeks.  Because of Mandy’s equipment, We were basically shoved into one tiny corner of her hospital room. The room’s walls were made of glass and there was always someone looking into the room watching Mandy’s vital signs. Doctors, nurses, technicians and  other visitors would walk by and look in.  After a while you feel like you are an animal in the zoo,   <announcer “ And here we havePapa Blaes, Mama Blaes and Baby Blaes living in their natural habitat”  or maybe not so natural  :)     We had no privacy.  We had to dress and undress in the bathroom.  It was a difficult experience. By the time Teresa and I went home we were basically shell shocked.  As a result of that and Many other experiences with Mandy,   I find that I value quiet and privacy much more than before.  So Ive needed some time to recoup.  

Mandy is doing great overall.   She’s over 26 pounds now. She acts like a normal 2 year old for the most part.  And now for the big development.

Mandy finally had her cleft palate repaired. 

It took over 2 years of planning and hoping.  There were a lot of issues that had to be overcome.

Mandy had to be in really good health, because this surgery was expected to  set up her back some.

The surgery happened early October 21st The surgery took about 2 hours, and went off like Clockwork. Mandy was supposed to stay in the hospital overnight but was held over the weekend.

Here it is a week later and I am happy to report that she doing great!  She has to wear arm restraints to keep her fingers and everything else out of her mouth.  It’s quite a feat let me tell you.  She hates having her arms confined. Tomorrow we are going to the see the plastic surgeon. Hopefully everything has healed correctly. I will let you know how it goes.

Thank You for Your Prayers and understanding  I will do my best to try to post about once a month. 

Love in Christ
Michael Blaes

P.S. Please let me know that you are out there by adding a comment below.

Happy New Year; New Year’s Resolutions and Reflections

Hey guys,

Happy New Year!

img033We wish you and yours a happy, healthy and prosperous new year.  2009 was a crazy time for us with lots of ups and downs

Mandy finally coming home and all of the adjustments we had to do to make this happen.

Mandy’s first eye surgery

Having to replace the tubes in her ears

Her victories over Pnuemonia and H1N1.

Losing one of Mandy’s grandmothers

Her Second Birthday  – More on this later

Her first Christmas home

Her Second Eye surgery- I’ll tell you about this too

We have been through a lot, and if I had to catagorize 2009,I would call it the year of God’s faithfulness.  It has been very difficult at times But there have been some really incredible events that remind us again and again that God has our back.  Its no wonder that he says that he will never leave us nor forsake us

To catch you up,  I will have to go back several months.  In October, Mandy contracted both the H1N1 Flu virus and Pnuemonia. She ended up bing hospitalized. She came through with flying colors and recovered quickly.

Then November came along and tragedy struck.   Mandy’s Grandma Robin, Teresa’s mom passed away. It was very sudden, and hit us very hard.  I know Mandy didnt understand what was going on, but I could tell that it affected her.   It was a very hard time for us. But we know for sure that Robin had acccepted Christ, and that she is in heaven.  but we still miss her.

Rolling forward to December.  That was a very eventful month for us. First, Mandy celebrated her second birthday. Grandma Laura  and Grandpa Jerry flew in from New Mexico and spent several days with us. They had a blast with Mandy and spoiled her rotten, just like grandparents are supposed to. My favorite image was  Mandy sitting in my Dad’s lap while he sang the same songs that I grew up on.  That was an incredible treat.  She got some really cool  presents too including a playpen that her Grandpa Bryan  gave her.  You should see her sitting there playing with her toys.


Next came Christmas.

img014For the most part it was pretty quiet. We spent it at home and rested.  But there was one really neat thing that happened. A couple of days before Someone knocked on our door. I opened the door and there was a man holding a huge basket of goodies. He asked me if we were the B’laes’;s and Handed me the basket and two big bags. One with a ham, cheese, rolls etc. The other held presents for Mandy. The thing is; I have no idea who sent them. I did not recognize the man and he refused to tell me .  the packages were marked from Secret Santa.  It was very special and I would like to thank whoever was responsible.

Finally came Mandy’s second surgery which happened on Wednesday December 30. Her eye doctor successfully removed the cattarct from her right eye. He was expecting some difficulty because of the size of the eye. However everything went off like clockwork. This included transportation, timing, waiting room, pre-op, everything.  I remember we went outside to wait for the cab and had a quick bite to eat. We finished our lunch, and the cab pulled up.  Sometimes we end up waitng an hour or more. It couldn’t have gone any better. i can just see God up there tweaking events just to remind us how special we are to him.

This brings us up to the present.  Mandy is recovering nicely, experiencing some pain. Yet she is still the happy little girl that never ceases to amaze me.  I actually saw her sitting up in her crib on her own for the first time tonight!

Mandy sitting up in her crib for the frist time!
Mandy sitting up in her crib for the frist time!

I realize that you have missed out on some of this journey and I am truly sorry for that.  It has been hard to keep up with all of the postings along with Mandy’s care and trying to keep things going. So with this being New years day,  I have decided to turn over a new leaf and start a new years resolution. I will do my best  to post every week and let you know how Mandy is doing. I will also try to shoot one video per month as well.  Expect the new post on Sunday.

I know this has been a long post and I thank you for taking the time to read it. Mandy’s story has been an incredible adventure for us and I enjoy sharing it with you. It shows  how our Heavenly Father cares for us, even the small things.  He has brought us through many things and I’m sure that there is more coming. Yet he is still faithful. If you are going through a difficult time, talk to God and let him help you. I know from first-hand experience he will not let you down.

Love  in Christ,
Michael, Teresa and Mandy

PS. Please share your thoughts by clicking the comment link below

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