Saturday, August 30, 2008

Great Wolf Lodge...Here We Come

Noah playing at the inside water park
This is part of the out side water park

One of the kids water slides
Statues outside the Great Wolf Lodge
This is the famous GWL bucket
A picture by the mantel
Kayla chilling out after a long day of travel and play (this is a a bunk in the kids cabin that is was in our room)

Kids cabin located inside our room-it has it's own T.V. and Video game system
The "grown up" portion of the room- We also had a small kitchen and balcony

Earlier in the summer I did a few post about our upcoming trip to Texas. In one of those post I stated that we had a surprise for our kids and that we would post about it when we returned (as to not spoil the surprise). I never got around to posting. I'm still working on the pictures. My camera was down so I borrowed a friends and it is taking time to get the pictures down loaded and edited. I took more photos than I have ever taken at one time. When I'm done then I want to turn them into slide shows. It was one of the best vacations I have had with my children. ( I decided to post a few of the pictures from our last trip.

The big surprise was that we stopped in Grapevine TX at the Great Wolf Lodge. The kids were so excited. It is an amazing place for kids and families. One of the reasons that we went was it is a family favorite for Amber, her late husband, and their kids. She wanted to take the kids back but knew that it would be difficult since this was were they spent many family vacations. We really enjoyed our time and we made some new memories.

Since this is such a difficult weekend Amber decided that we should all go away for the weekend and what better place than the GWL. This will be the first time James has been. We are going with another family as well. We thought that it would be fitting that since we were all together one year ago we should be together a year later. According to the date it will not be one year until Wednesday but it was Labor Day Monday when we received that devastating phone call. It was also her birthday so we are going to celebrate her birthday this weekend. Her real birthday is the 3rd...the day he died and so we are going to celebrate early. It is going to be a surprise. I took the kids last night so that they could buy their mom something for her birthday. We had such a good time and they were really into shopping for her. To my surprise they haven't spilled the beans either. She told me today that her kids have not said a word about what we did last night. The 5 year old did say that we went to the circus. I told her to tell her mom that if she asked where we went. So last night when I dropped the kids off the 5 year old said " aunt Angie I had so much fun at the circus. That was the best cotton candy." She is just too much for words some days.

I will probably not have much time to post next week. We will come home on Monday, Tuesday I start keeping Philip part time, and then Wednesday...well it is just going to be a difficult day.

If you are reading this post please pray for this dear family. This year has been so difficult for them. If you only knew the extent of the obsticials that they have had to face on top of loosing Danny. Please pary that we will know how to comfort them and how to support them through this next week as we move through the one year anniversary of this tragedy. Also pray for us as we celebrate Philip's first birthday...with out his dad.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

We Figured It Out!

Noah watching TV after his one mile run
I only see him this still when he is really sick
This is a pretty normal site around our house
This is where Noah sits if Sissy is in the floor. He sits on her back more than he sits in a chair

So far we are off to a great start this week. Monday I was officially released by the doctor. I was also able to start driving again because I was able to stop taking the narcotic pain medications. I am actually not taking any pain meds at this time. Tuesday I lost one of the last "BIG" scabs. This was a big deal because now there is no risk of bleeding. I still have some minor scabbing that is irritating but not very painful. There is still some pain especially with my ears and my throat is still achy but I finally feel human again. I am actually eating some solid foods although I still have to eat very small bites. Sneezing and yawning still hurts something awful, and I can't stand for my throat to become dry. I had my first full glass Diet Coke today. It actually tasted good for the first time. It still burns a little...not the good kind of burn either but it is getting better. I still prefer water which is better for me any way. My nose is still sore and I can tell it is in that itchy healing stage. It is more tender than it has been but I think that it is doing pretty good.

My ENT said that he wanted me to start power walking two miles a day as soon as I was released. We had intended to start walking when school started but I was thinking that we would start off with a mile on school days. Monday we started school and we incorporated our walking into our school day (it was great for PE). We also went for a walk that evening when James came home. Today I drove the van to see how far we were walking and it was a little over one mile. Since we are walking the same route morning and evening we are accomplishing our two plus miles a day. So far we have done this for two days. Here's the best part. Instead of pushing Noah in the stroller I decided to let him walk Monday morning. He ran most of the way. I am telling you this boy has so much energy. So then it came time for our evening walk and I planned on taking the stroller. When he heard we were going for our walk he got so excited and ran out the door with dad. He ran the whole way again. Remember we are power walking. Not the fastest in the world but not a leisure stroll. Then we met some friends for ice cream at DQ (I know that kinda cancels out the walk) and he played for about an hour on the play ground. I could not believe that the child could still stand and this only proves how much energy he has. So today we go for our walk and he is very excited but moving a little slower. We get home and walk in the door. He asked for his juice and said "I just need to watch Sesame Street". We did his letters in his name and colored his picture first. Then he went and got his blankie and laid in the floor and watched Sesame Street. We really do not let him watch a lot of TV nor does he sit very long when he does. This time however he did not move. When it was over he came in and said 'I'm so hungry and my wegs hurt". I made him some lunch and then he took a three hour nap. SO I FIGURED IT OUT! All I have to do to wear out my two year old is let him run three miles in two days and let him play at the park for an hour. No big deal. SIGH!

School is going pretty well. Monday she was done by three and today she was done by four or four thirty. That includes any seat work or home work. I have to say that God has such a sense of humor. I believe that since I did not take school very serious he is having me repeat it. I have to study as much as she does. I also have to read the same novels so that we can discuss them. Today we started Ann of Green Gables. It is pretty good so far.

This year I decided that if we had any attitude problems such as arguing, complaining or just a bad attitude that she was going to have to do ten jumping jacks for every offense. It works great. By the time shes done she's usually laughing at the situation and her attitude is better. She has to start her jumping jacks over if they are sloppy so yesterday she did several sets in the morning before she understood that I meant business. Today we only had one offense. This may work for attitude and PE.

So far we are off to a good start. Last year at this time we were plugging away with school and had no idea that our lives were about to change. I want to be very clear that our lives did not change in the same way that another family's did, but things were still very difficult for such a long time. We are just asking that God will allow us to move through this school year without tragedy and filled with hope. We are also praying for God's strength and peace as we come upon the one year anniversary of Danny's death. We are excited about what this year will bring and look forward to a successful year.

By the way at two weeks post op I had lost twenty pounds. I am hoping that I will be able to continue to keep losing. Also James said that I have not snored in at least a week. I am feeling better so far but time will tell if we really resolved the sleep apnea issue. Either way I really do believe that I am breathing easier.

I better get to bed. Actuall y I need to read and get James' clothes ready for work...then bed!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Puppy Oh Puppy & Cuttie (FFF)



Kayla and Cutie

This is a picture of puppy that is clean and new and a picture of puppy that has been well loved

This was Noah first favorite stuffed animal
For some reason he thought that he needed a trip through the dish washer

My sister bought Noah this puppy at Kohl's when she came to visit one time. Noah loves puppies and she thought he might like this one. It turned out that he fell madly in love with his "puppy". He loves this puppy so much that we soon realized that we needed a spare. Unfortunately they no longer carried them at Kohl's. Eventually I found a new one with tags at a resale shop. It turned out that a very short time later we needed him. The morning that we woke up to take the kids to my sisters for 17 days, Noah had thrown up all over puppy and there was no way that we could send it with him. While Noah was taking a bath I put puppy in the wash and gave him the new puppy. To our surprise it worked. We were able to take Noah to my sisters and then come home to finish cleaning the old puppy. It took three rounds through the wash to get puppy clean. We were leaving the next day for Thailand and so the new puppy saved our neck.

Noah loves his puppy so much that we would joke that he and puppy needed to get a room. He would kiss his puppy passionately and for a long time. He would roll around on the floor hugging it saying "oh puppy oh puppy"!

He has now made a new friend-Penny. It is a black lab from build a bear. Long story short my sister has a black cocker spaniel named penny that he is head over heals in love with. He now calls all black dogs penny. One day in build a bear he saw the little black lab that is the miniature to the big lab. His Aunt Ber got it for him and he carries it everywhere. When he went to see my sister during my surgery she took them to Build a Bear and he made his first build a bear. He came home with a big black lab named penny. My sister wanted him to get an alligator and even told him that she would by him tow but he would not budge. He only wanted penny.

Since I did not have a digital camera with Kayla it is harder to post pictures of her. I did find one of her with her first Build a Bear that my sister got for her. She is getting her ears pierced and brought along cutie for comfort.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

A little disapointed but hopeful

Today I had my second followup appointment with the ENT. I was expecting that he would say things looked great (well except my throat-it still looks like a bomb went off in there) and that I could resume normal activity. To me normal activity would include driving. Instead I am still on restriction till Monday. That would not sound too bad except we start school on Monday so I will be home bound anyway. We would have started some school this week but we were waiting on text books. I suspected that he might not release me to drive yet but I was hopeful. You really do not realize how much freedom you have until it is gone. At first I didn't care but the last few days I have been going stir crazy. I have tried to go out a few times with a friend but all ended badly and abruptly. I guess my body just wasn't as ready as my mental state. The last two days I have been weaning down on my (narcotic) meds during the day and trying to survive on over the counter. The pain has been worse because of this and I have been sleeping more. When I do sleep I don't even hear the phone ring. Kayla has been so helpful with everything.

The rest of the appointment was a little disappointing. He did remove the stitches in my nose which feels so much better. Unfortunately the place where he took out the bone spur has scar tissue buildup. There is also a flap of skin that is trying to grow back. He broke up some of the tissue and suctioned it out but I have to go back in two weeks and have it checked. He believes that he will have do a procedure in the office over the next month or so to open it back up. He also said that now that he can see in there that he may have to reduce my trubinates. He has reassured me that he can do these two procedures under local anesthesia in his office. I just saw more pain and more recovery. He said that my throat was healing as expected. I pointed out that one side was larger than the other and he said that it was where the tonsils were positioned. It looks and feels a little strange but then it is not done healing either. He said that I was still having so much pain because there was still a lot of scabbing. He felt like it would be better by the first of next week. This is also the time I have to be very careful because there are still scabs and some are actually quite large there is still a chance of bleeding. He did refill my "good" pain meds for night time use. I just can't make it with out them yet. The ear pain is worse than the throat pain. I will be so happy when the ear pain is gone. I also have begun to cough and sneeze. Both are bad...sneezing is worse. I went one day without allergy meds and we went to fill them tonight. This is not the time for an allergy flair up.

I really like my doctor. He is very kind and really cares about what I am going through. He has been very cautious and thorough. He did say that we have gained so much ground. So even though I was a little disappointed that we are not at the end of this we are hopeful that we are on the right track. I just want this surgery to make a difference in how I feel. We also did not realize how dangerous sleep apnea was until we started with this doctor. It is known as the silent killer and we want to do what we can to prevent unnecessary medical conditions.

One more very positive thing... total weight loss at almost two weeks post op is 17 pounds. I have to say I would not recommend this as a weight loss program to anyone but if you have to have this surgery then you deserve all the loss you get. Monday he said that I can start power walking. This just might be possible with two open airways.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Time For Some Good News

Kayla and Noah ready for promotion Sunday

Noah showing me his new and old toys

Noah was so happy to be home
Noah telling me all about his trip to Aunt April's house

The kids arrived home around 6pm Saturday. It was unusual to be waiting for them because we are the ones that take and pick up. This time their Tia AJ took to to meet my sister and to pick them up. Noah was very happy to be home. He had a great time at my sisters swimming, going to the library, making his Penny at Build A bear, playing with his cousins army men and giant bugs and so much more. Kayla started her first scrapbook. She did an amazing job and used her own money to buy all her supplies. It did not look like a twelve year old did the pages. She too went swimming, hung out with the cousins, went bowling and hung out with their youth group. When Noah came home he kept touching things and saying "this is my van, my truck, my jeep and so on. When he came inside he had a lot to show mom (hence the pictures above). I really missed the kids but it only took me about 30 minuets to realize that I would not have been able to handle his energy if he had stayed this past week. I was not sure how I was going to make it through the evening. I am very sensitive to noise and ciaos but since the surgery the sensitivity had been magnified. The tiniest sounds sends me over the edge. I believe that one reason may be that I can hear better and that he nerve is sensitive. The tonsils were so large on the right side that they had to actually dig them out of my neck. He told James they were some of the largest that he had seen. This could very well explain years of ear infections and hearing problems. I am hoping that the sensitivity gets better with the healing and that the surgery will actually fix some of the ear problems as well.

Saturday morning brought more pain. I started off trying to eat a jello and it just burned too bad. I took more pain meds and then decided to straighten up the house a little. I was really scared that the kids were coming home and that I still did not feel up to taking care of them. That sent me into an emotional hyper drive and I began to think of all the things that I needed to do before they came home. Went that in mind I took a shower and told James I needed to go to Walmart. Well let me just say he did not by into my plan. I laid it on thick but his response was make me a list and I'll go. That was not what I wanted to hear so I just cried and said "fine I'll just go take a nap"! Like that was going to show him a thing or two. It was what he wanted me to do in the first place. After I got over my melt down I apologized and we spent the rest of the afternoon curled up in the double recliner watching a movie. It was a great way to spend the day once I got over another day of cabin fever.

We had already decided that James would take the kids to church and I would stay home. Today was our big promotion Sunday and there was a lot planned for each class. Again I cried when the kids left because I was missing taking Noah to see his new class and Kayla was starting with the 7th graders. It is not typical for any of us to miss church. We know that some people like having a day off but for our family it is just part of who we are. This was my second week to not be able to go. We have had trouble getting Noah used to being dropped off but since we had VBS he loves Church. He talks about VBS all the time.

Everyone went to church as scheduled. James picked up Olivia and Hanna for church since Amber and Philip got the stomach flu that we had. We didn't want the girls to miss their big day either. I enjoyed my morning at home. I had a really hard time staying awake until 10 for meds. After I took them I went to bed and slept until James called at 12:30. Kayla stayed at Hanna's house after church and James and Noah came home for lunch. I attempted an applesauce for lunch. It took about an hour to eat it. I would take a bit drink lost of water and repeat. I had tried to eat something for breakfast and just couldn't get it down. After lunch I took a small nap and then did some laundry. Kayla came home around 5pm and then some friends from church brought us supper. At this point my stomach was hurting soooo bad. I was so hungry. The food they brought smelt so good. I really thought that I would not be able to eat but I was going to try. I had the most amazing hash brown casserole and green beans. I think that the green beans were from their garden. I actually ate two table spoons of the casserole and two small helpings of the green beans. By the end I was in a lot of pain but my stomach was so thankful. After dinner it was another round of meds and then Kayla cleaned up supper. I said I would help but she said she would take care of it all. God bless her! She is amazing. Around 7pm Kayla kept Noah and James and I went to Walmart. Yes he took me to Walmart. I needed some stuff for the kids and some more meds for my nose. (I was able to get the People mag with the Chapman family while I was there) We were not gone too long. I did pretty well but was tired by the time we got to the van. I also am noticing that my throat gets real dry really fast. The other oddity is that I was overwhelmed by smells there. As we walked past the shoe dept James asked me how I was doing and I told him that the smells were bothering me. He said I was smelling the rubber and asked if that was new. I actually was. I'm not sure about this new smell thing. After we left Walmart James took me for a milkshake. It is a waste to spend money on me because I usually only get about two bites in but tonight I had about 1/2 cup before I gave up. I put it in the freezer for tomorrow. The rest of the night has been pretty peaceful. I need fold some laundry and put the dishes in the dish washer but that will have to wait till tomorrow. Monday a friend from church is going to come get Noah and take him to play with her son. She was actually my nurse in the hospital last Sunday. She has been amazing and has really kept up with me at home.

Over all today was so much better. The pain is still there but my body seems to be healing. I am still in pain and yawning, swelling, and other things that involve the throat are extremely painful but the fatigue is getting better and so is the body aches. I spit a lot of clots this morning and that actually made things feel a little better. The pain is more isolated to actual movement in the throat instead of constant pain. I was able to take my med dosage down today and will try to lower it one more tomorrow. I still have to take it every 4 hours but just not as much each time. I was able to make the decision on when to do that and today felt like a good starting point. So far so good. I still feel the pain the worst 30 minuets before new meds. I could set the clock by the pain. The nights are the hardest time right now so it may be more difficult tonight but at least it's progress. My next appointment is Thursday. I am hoping that they will take the stitches out of my nose then. I also hope that by the end of the week I can wean of of the narcotics and just stick with over the counter. I have one more week of restrictions which I can already tell is going to get me in trouble. I had a hard time sitting still today and not up cleaning. It is amazing how much better you feel with just a small improvement.

We are still waiting for Kayla's curriculum to come in. I have all my teacher books but we are waiting on her consumables. I'm hoping that we can spend the week getting bed times established and working on routines. The house is still in great shape and I think that we are ready to start off a new school year.

I do have a prayer request. Tomorrow Olovia starts kindergarten. This will be a difficult milestone without daddy in the picture. Please pray for Amber as she has to face sending one to JR High and one to Kindergarten by herself tomorrow. These are milestones that make his absence a reality.

Friday, August 15, 2008


It is exactly one week post op. It' s hard to believe that I started this insane roller coaster a week ago. It seems so much longer some moments and like it just happened yesterday at others. I have had a hard time focusing to type or do much of anything. Tonight I am trying to keep my mind off things until pain meds arrive.

So one of the biggest things that come to mind is that I have really tried to "mentally" handle the pain. I knew that it would exist so I have tried to focus on the fact that I can make it through this one episode at a time. So how's that going?

Well...first it is more difficult to just handle pain when it changes every four hours and every day. No two days have been alike. There have been similarities but so many more differences than I thought there would be. It is also more emotionally draining than I expected it to be.

So last night was the worst so far. It was followed by a bad morning and kept a slow downward pace all day. Tonight I realized that people asked me if I'm okay a lot. I usually say yes because I'm not dying and I am making it. Well tonight James asked me if I was okay and I just said "no I am not okay! I'm not dying and I will make it to the other side of this, but I am NOT OKAY"! "I told him exactly how I felt. I have had no dt coke or solid foods for 8 days, the sight of liquid pain medications make my stomach dry heave and jello is a four letter word. My stitches are drying out, my skin itches from the dehydration or a med reaction-we are yet to figure out why. I have open third degree burns on my tongue and throat the size of half dollars. I have spent all day spiting out mouth fulls of soars and scabs. Not only does this hurt but it is very gross. I still have the stomach virus that welcomed me home from the hospital so if I do manage to get more than liquid med or jello down I spend the next three hours in the bathroom doing business. I have not slept in my bed or lying down in 8 days, and I'm not allowed to pick up any thing I drop (which happens a lot when you are on that many drugs). I fall asleep any time I sit down even when I am holding things. Today (Friday) I had my first opportunity to be ALONE in 8 days with total peace and quiet only to throw a blood clot and start bleeding. I was alone for twenty minuets before I had to have a babysitter again. For the first time in my life I can smell the great food that people are bring for our family and I can't eat it. I've tried. It either burns or I choke or I just can't get through the pain (throat and stomach). I love eating other peoples cooking so this just seems like torture. I believe that I know what a chicken feels like to have it's neck rung. My neck is so weak I can barley hold up my own head. This results in headaches and just plain misery. Then there is the Flu that is accompanied by fever, hot and cold flashes and stomach pains that are worse than I ahve had in a long time. The worst part at this point is that the doctor said that I should expect about 6 more days of feeling like this then the better part comes. So...No I am really not okay. I'm going to survive but at this point I really just want to sleep through the night in my own bed after a smallish meal that left me without stomach pain. I also look forward to time being measured in some thing other than pain meds. For those that know me I do not like medicine. For the most part it makes me feel far worse than better. In this case I know that I can not make it without them but it will be good to see them gone. I also look forward to being able to drive my van again. We are at least another week out for that. The kids come home tomorrow and I'm just not sure how I'm going to be ready to take care for them. Please keep praying for healing and endurance. It has been several days since things have been good and I just need a "good day" soon.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Please Keep Praying!

Things are pretty bad over here right now. I did not know that I could feel this bad. I have my appointment at 4:20 today. I am hoping that he will be able to help in some small way. The nurse thinks that I have the stomach flu on top of the surgeries. I just can't ask for your prayers enough right now. I know that the Lord will sustain me and that this will pass by but for now I just need some rest and for the stomach issues to subside. I had to stop taking some of the pain med because they were just making me too sick. In return the pain is way worse but I would rather have the pain at this point. There is no food that works and drinking sends me into a flood of tears. I have to stay hydrated but I'm not sure how to even manage that at this point.

I need to go. Thanks again for everyone's support. We love you all so very much.

Monday, August 11, 2008

First Day Home


My first night home went better than I would have expected. The pain is usually under control until the first swallowing...then it is indescribably. I can usually get about three swallows then I am done and my body just aches everywhere. There is a deeper pain and a more intense pain but it is tolerable for the most part. Really the biggest part is that when I feel bad I just feel bad.

I have been able to sleep a few hours at a time...that is a huge praise. Also I ate my first full (although small) bowl of soup. It was so wonderful. Usually when you do not eat it is because your stomach hurts. In this case my stomach is screaming hey I'm hungry and my throat screams back I know but it's going to be awhile before I can get any thing down to you. So tonight I think that my stomach and my throat were in agreement. I think that it helped my mental state a lot. Good part of this is that they weighed me at the hospital Friday and by Monday morning I had already lost between 5-7 pounds. This is very exciting.

The kids are having fun at my sisters. She took the kids to build a bear today. Kayla made a monkey and Noah made his "penny". He loves my sister's black cocker spaniel named penny. So now every black puppy is named penny. My sister tried to get him to make an alligator but he said "no my penny".

So at some point when I am up to it I will share more about the actual surgery experience. It was probably the scariest thing I have ever been through. I had a bad reaction to the morphine and I really thought that I was dying. Obviously I am still here so things worked out okay but it scared me so bad. I had two other episodes with the morphine by that evening so we finally had them make a note in my chart not to use that medicine again.

I have had a lot of good helpers at the hospital and at home. Olivia is such a little helper. She has helped me all day and it is good to have her here. I miss my kids but it is better having them at my sisters because I know they are having a great time. I think that I am not making sense so I'm going to go for now. Several people have offered to help and we will probably need it at some time. We have tried to let people know that we need people fo the long haul over the next couple of weeks. It will be much more difficult when the kids get home and I am trying to take care of them and meals and other responsibilities. So please bear with us and we will try to let people know what we need as soon as we know. There are so many people that need more help than us but we know that it is necessary for us to have some extra help for a short peiord of time.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Finally Home

Well it has been a long three days...seems like much longer than three days. They did surgery Friday morning and released me from the hospital Sunday evening about 7:30. There is a lot to share but I'm not really up to it right now. We have had some big praises but it has been a difficult journey so far. The surgery required more work than they thought which has caused more pain. I had to skip one of my last doses due to my IV blowing out minuets before my last dose. We will try to share more soon but for now please pray for swelling from IV to go down, pain from removing the nose packs, and for new pain that is coming on this evening. The doctor said there is more pain and new pain to come. Thank you for the prayers so far...they are more helpful than we can express. The next two weeks are not going to be easy but there will be breath at he end of the road.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Just Thinking

We are winding down to the last few hours before surgery. The kids are packed (I hope anyway). I keep thinking that I have forgotten something. Actually I did. We were low on pull ups so James ran to Walmart to pick up a package. On the way he had a blowout on his truck so he has been gone for over an hour. I'm not sure he will volunteer to go out again any time soon. It was very thoughtful of him though. He could tell that I just wasn't up to it. He has had a tough week though so he probably would have prefered to stay home as well.

I really need to get to bed. We have to get the kids to a friends house and be at the hospital in 7 hours. I think that it will be hard to sleep tonight but I figure that sleeping is all I will be dioing tomorrow so I'm not to concerned.

So I thought that I would share a few things that are on my mind tonight.

*I'm excited that the kids are going to get to see family again but I always get nervous to think about them being away form home.

*I keep wondering if Noah will understand that mom doesn't feel good when he comes home. He is excited to go to his aunt's house and even told me that I had to go to the hospital and go night night. We are not sure where he got this because we have not talked to him about it at all.

* I'm begining to think that Noah's head is made of concrete. I do not know how this child hits his head so much yet has only had stiches one time. Actually they glued it so he hasn't even had stiches. Today he was standing up on his seat in the van. He usually gets in turns around and then sits down. Today he stood up and turned his back to the door. He completly missed the chair and fell head first out the door. He hit between the sliding door and floor baord and then fell to the ground. He has a huge knot but other than that he's okay. Mom's nerves however are fried. I should have known that today he would be wild when I saw him standing on the back of the recliner this morning.

*So what does one do when you can't talk. I have never been in a state were I was unable to speak or unwilling. I can't even fatham.

*I keep wondering "just how bad does this really hurt?" I guess I will know soon enough.

*Looking forward to loosing weight but I wonder how long it will take to get tired of jello.

Things that we accomplished over the last two weeks. These are just the ones I can remember.
*cleaned the bathrooms, bedrooms, living room, and dinning room
*James installed new blinds in our bed room and we had the other one's cleaned (good friend helped with all our dusting due to my allergies and needing to stay well for surgery)
*helped friends pack and move
*cleaned the kitchen including the oven (it is not self cleaning)
*went through piles of papers
*cleaned and organized closets and dressors
*had carpets cleaned (this was a treat from a friend)
*windows washed (not all of them but the main ones
*washed shower curtains and window coverings
*washed all bedding
*steamed our mattresses
*moved all furniture that can be moved to clean behind
*got rid of ebay items that have been taking up my entry (no more ebay at this time)
*cleaned out old curriculum
*purchased new teacing materials
*ordered student materials
*cleaned computer desk
*oraginized curriculum book shelf
*purchased school supplies
*moved Kayla's furniture and sold her desk
*bought Kayla new beddding and new chair
*finished laundry
*paid bills
*balanced check book
*bought groceries
*packed the kids
*packed my bag
*spent quality time with James (including dinner at Olive Garden)
*Took the kids to the pool, out to lunch, shopping, and took them to paly at Fast Lanes
*Played with Noah hung out with Kayla

I'm sure there is more. Including loads of errands. It feels so good to be on top of our home again. I hope that with the kids gone for a week we can keep up with it. Actually I won't be doing much but I know that those that are here will help me out. I look forward to starting the school year with our home clean and organized. I hope that this will help us do our little chores every day and then keep with the bigger things weekly and monthly. I am so energized. I guess all it took was someone telling me that I could not do anything for 2-3 weeks. I still have some organining to do but it is managable now.

Before I go I have to say that the biggest thing on my mind is that I am so in Love with my God. He continues to amaze me and show himself in ways that I am not expecting. I am looking forward to some down time with Him over the next couple of weeks. I am excited to see how he is going to work in our lives this year. We are starting to have more happy days than sad. I know that we are coming up on a difficult anniversary but I trust God to see us through and to be a light that far outshines any darkness that we have ever faced. Thank you God for your faithfulness and mercy. They trully are new every morning.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Good Morning America &SSC Family

I was able to watch the interview with the Chapman family this morning. It was difficult to hear more of the details. It just breaks your heart all over again. It was very comforting though to see this family moving forward and holding each other so closely. I just know that our heavenly Father is holding them even tighter. It was encouraging to know that this family is receiving good council and that Will seems to be on a path of healing. It seems as though God had his hand on the changes that led to this interview being aired 11 weeks form the actual date the tragedy occurred. (the air date was changed several times and ended up on Wed)

It was heart breaking to see Mary Beth. I know the whole family is dealing with broken hearts but I just have so much compassion for this woman. Our prayers are with the Chapman family on this difficult yet eventful day. May God's kingdom be forever changed through this family's testimony.

Tomorrow (Thursday) the family will be on Larry King Live in the evening on CNN. Also People magazine will have there article on August 11th I believe.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Rules for a reason!

So after today I think that Noah might understand a little better why mom kept saying no running at the pool. I must have said it a hundred times and he must have fallen at least a dozen or more times. Maybe the words finally sank in during the last 10 minuets when he had his last wipe out. He would wipe out hit his head and just keep on going. Of course he stopped for the kissing of the many boo-boos and for the lectures that came with those boo-boos but then he just darted off for more fun. I'm telling you just think energizer bunny on speed! So then it happened. One too many falls and by this time the skin had reached that soft pruney stage. You know where the skin is thin and wrinkled because of being in the water for so long. We were in the little kids part of the pool (because I needed a break and it was safe in there). I saw the whole thing. First the fall, then the head hitting the concrete bench and then the scream. I'm not sure that I have moved that fast in a really long time. I expected the majority of the damage to be on his head. Nope it is fully intact but the road rash on the leg and hand were enough cause for a little boy to loose all self control. At one point I actually swatted his bottom (it was light and it did not hurt him) to get him to calm down. I had no other way of knowing what was hurting unless he was calm enough to talk to me. That did the trick and then I was able to hold him and comfort him. Then came the cry for the band aid. There was no way that a band aid was going to fix this boo-boo but we set out for one any way. So long story short several very pretty lifeguards became mush in his hands as they set out to make this little guy feel better. They cleaned them and then bandaged his hand. The leg was a lost cause but wasn't as deep so no bandage on it. After some stinging spray, neosporin, a bandage, and a lengthy conversation from the lifeguards about no running at the pool we were on our way. I could tell that his leg was still bothering him but the hand was all better. In fact the hand was now something to show any one and everyone that would listen. He was very proud of his "big band aid" and told everyone no running at the pool. He even had to show the waitress at dinner tonight. So...maybe just maybe the next time mom says no running at the pool...well one can hope can't they.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Back for a quick update

When I saw the theme for FFF I knew that we had to participate. I knew the exact picture that I had to share. This first picture has a very special meaning. As most of you know the day that we brought Noah home from Guatemala we learned that our neighbor and friend had been killed in a tragic accident. One morning while Noah was actually sleeping I went in to check on Kayla and she was crying. She and Eric had been very close and his death hit her harder than anything I have ever seen. So as we sat there talking I began to twirl her hair as a way to comfort her. By the time we had finished talking I realized that I had made her these cute little "hair" glasses. The neat part of the story was that Eric use to sit on the trampoline and the kids would beg him to do that " toe hair thing". So he would take off his socks and twist his toe hairs to make them stand straight up like little spikes. It was such a silly thing but the kids loved it. He would also brag about the things he could make with his "hairy hobbit" feet. We both smiled as we realized that Eric would forever be a part of our lives and that his memory would live on... and what better way to celebrate his memory than to make crazy "hair" glasses. He would have been so proud and probably would have grown his hair out just so he could have a pair of his very own.

Isn't he just too cute for words
The night before his first haircut. Look at all that hair.
Does this one count? Don't ask! However I think that he got his point across that it is time to buy some new towels.

Yes, I know it has been a long time since I have posted. So much is going on here trying to recover from the last two years of life. There is so much that I want to post but at this time I am just trying to refocus on the kids and our home. I still intend to catch up on some post about our summer as well. I figure that the best time to catch up is when I have nothing to do but sit after my surgery.

It is amazing how much you can accomplish when you have wonderful friends that come along beside you to help and when you are actually feeling well. I have had two weeks of good health and several people helping to ensure that it will stay that way until surgery day.

This morning I have my pre-op appointment. I think after today it will feel real. I still feel a little anxious about the kids and how Noah will handle a few of the up coming changes. The kids will spend a week at my sisters but they will be home about the time that I start to really feel the affects of the healing (such as the scabbing and stuff. Please pray for me with Noah. He is a bundle of energy and a monkey. He just doesn't understand the hands off part of life. I will probably have extra help with the kids the second week but I know that he is just too young to understand that he can not climb all over mom. Noah only has two gears busy and busier. Okay he does have a third but it only engages when he is asleep. Actually I am beginning to see why he did not sleep as an infant. I think that he had too much energy and had nothing to do with it so he was restless.

I need to wrap things up but I wanted to mention that Kayla is on her first mission trip. She left on Wednesday and will return late Saturday night. She called when they got to their destination but I haven't heard from her since. This is her first big trip away from home with out family. She was excited but nervous. I think that she will have an amazing journey and that it will open her eyes to things of this world. They will be working in homeless shelters, soup kitchens, and homes that need much cleaning and repair. They are sleeping on the floor not in hotels and experiencing life with out luxuries. I am so excited about how God is going to use this experience in her life. I am excited to hear all the stories.

More soon...I promise! Okay-Lord willing more soon.