Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The Dinosaurs are Dead

Yesterday, I had a little conversation with C that went something like this:

C: I had a dream about dinosaurs. Do you bemember dinosaurs? They were in my room.
Me: Do you know that there aren't any dinosaurs anymore? They lived a long, long time ago, but then they all died and all we have now is their bones. We can see pictures people drew of them, but we can't go to any zoo anywhere and see any.
C: The dinosaurs are dead?
Me: Uh-huh.
C: Did they go to live with Jesus?
Me: Uh....Uh-huh.
C: And Nanny? (Adam's grandmother who passed away about a year and a half ago)
Me: Uh....Yes, the dinosaurs live with Jesus and Nanny.
C: And they're all dead?
Me: Yes.
C: [long pause]........Well....then we better put their food in the fridge.

Really, I don't know what we did for entertainment before we decided to have kids.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

DTR

Wow. Been awhile since we posted. I thought that while we were living with my parents for a few months we'd have more time, but it seems to be just the opposite. We had a wonderful Halloween (and I'll post a few pics later when I'm on the right computer) and a really fun Thanksgiving.

I think C is somewhat adjusted to living here but he seems to have decided to be mad at my mom instead of wanting all her attention. I think it is because she seems a little more empowered to handle some discipline, and he doesn't really care for that from her. My relationship with my mother is pretty much the same, only changing in the ways I would expect.

But it really has brought to mind this idea of an evolving relationship between a mother and a child. With C and I, he is only three years old and already our relationship had changed dramatically. Now, he wants information from me mostly...for instance he wanted to know the other day where the animals put their food if Baby Jesus was in their manger. I want to do as much as I can to spark his creativity, and he has a lot more personal needs than a typical child his age. But I also need to do some things for me sometimes, and just have "quiet" time.

So where is the balance? I see moms with new babies and moms with all grown-up kids who struggle with this same issue...and what do you do? Oprah would tell you that you need to have your "me" time and I think Dr. Phil would tell you to explore all your personal feelings and needs so as not to keep them bottled up, but I don't know that I agree with either one of those. I do think you are a better mom if you take time for yourself. Even Jesus Christ, the perfect example, took time away from his disciples sometimes to meditate and be on his own.

But I do believe there is a line, and sometimes I know I see people that are crossing it. I think that if you choose yourself and your feelings once, that's okay. But if that is a frequent choice and is damaging to your children, or more importantly your relationship with your children, then I think it becomes inappropriate.

My problem is that it is always easier to look at and judge others than it is to see those things in yourself. So I spend my days wondering if I'm doing enough for him, or not doing enough for me...and I guess in the end if I wonder enough both ways maybe it means that I'm really finding some undefinable middle ground. Guess I'll just hope for the best.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Cupcakes are the Coolest (and so is Aunt Jess)

Adam's sister, Jess, has a degree in culinary arts and is amazingly talented when it comes to baking (and lots of other things, too!). I thought I'd show off a bit of her work...at least some of the cupcake part. You really can't help but take a picture sometimes.
These are the cupcakes she made for C's third birthday.

Sooooooo cute!!! Made with Oreos, Junior Mints (my fav) and Runts bananas.


Can't remember what occasion these were for...but the chocolate butterflies were so beautiful it seemed sin to eat them.

And this was for my nephews' birthdays. The spaghetti and meatballs is spaghetti-colored icing piped on, with Ferrero Rocher chocolates coated in strawberry jam. I didn't get to try the pizza cake, but the pepperonis were fruit roll-ups.

And this doesn't even include all the gorgeously decorated cakes she's made. I could seriously make blog just about her creations. We've definitely been spoiled, and miss her family a ton since they recently moved to New York...and not just because of the cakes. Luckily we get to see them again soon!!

C's 3rd Birthday

Wow...it's been over a month and I'm just now getting around to posting about C's birthday. I know I said I wouldn't be posting again until we move, but I woke up at 5am and couldn't get back to sleep and I'm sure not packing any boxes right now.
Connor is one of those very blessed kids that gets three birthdays...as you'll see. He really got into his birthday this year, much more than he has any other year so far. (And actually he thinks another one should be coming soon and asks me about it several times a week.) I think I now have him convinced that Christmas will be really cool, too, because he keeps suggesting we should write a letter to Santa. Unfortunately, his letter right now would include a pickup truck he can drive so we're waiting it out to see if that phase passes. The other day we had his first "see the commercial and want the toy" moment...and I know there is only more yet to come.

This is his birthday with our DeLuca family. Elsie's birthday was just about a month after C's so she was pretty into it, too. She is so gorgeous you can hardly help from taking a picture.

This is at his Peterson family's house. My mom made some "Lightning A-queen pupcakes" for him. (A really cool cupcake post is coming soon....) He is just starting to get into Star Wars, and figuring out what is funny. When we asked him how old he was now, he said,"I'm a Jedi!". Awesome.
And this is from his birthday at home. (His last one at this house...sniff, sniff.)


While I will be the first to admit he gets a little spoiled sometimes, I would also be the first to tell you that he really has no idea about it. All he knows is that there a lots of people around him who love him a bunch. And we wouldn't have it any other way. Happy Birthday to my sweet baby boy, who's not a baby anymore.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Moving and Missing

Right now I'm sitting in our office, which is looking very bare. The closet is almost completely empty, and there is a tall empty bookcase sitting next to a very full box in need of taping. I suppose I should close it right now and get on to more packing, but I'm taking a break cause I deserve it. But I am sure this will probably be our last post until we get settled again.

It seems like we've been waiting forever to move...one offer/half offer after another has really led us to feel like it would never happen...and yet suddenly it's here. We'll be out of this house in a week. I feel sort of like I did when I was eight months pregnant...like I've been looking forward to something for so long that I hardly remember things not being the way they are now, but perched on the edge of the big change and suddenly wondering if I'm really ready.

We were in our little apartment when we first got married for about a year, but the other five + years of our marriage were spent here. Adam got his first real job here, we were pregnant here, we brought C home from the hospital to this house, and I remember many of the ups and downs of the last few years by where I was in the house when whatever it was happened. I feel like I should go through the house and take pictures of every room--just to remember it as it is, but I know I'd never really look at them.

And really, it's not just the house, but the whole community. I will admit...I won't miss the crazy teenagers running up and down the road, or the weird people that frequent the Shelbyville Walmart, or trying to make it down US 60 during Shelbyville's rush hour which is not caused by traffic but instead by people who all drive 40mph as their max speed. But we will miss the family five minutes away, the librarian and the awesome library program, our crazy "conspiracy theory" neighbor, the neighbor who thinks cigarettes are a fifth food group, the tractor stores and train overpass we go by on the way to just about anywhere that totally make C's day, the beautiful park with walking paths, a pool, a gym, and camping soooo close, and all the wonderful people at our church that have enriched our lives in countless ways.

Wow, if I'm not careful I might really talk my way out of this. But I guess when I really think it through I know that what makes all of this so great is people, not buildings. As my mom says, "People are more important than things." We will dearly miss all those who have influenced our lives for good over these past five years. And even if we have to leave this house behind, you can be sure we'll always keep those memories in our hearts.

Monday, September 21, 2009

What Dreams May Come

I should be doing MANY other things right now, but I thought I'd post this little bit to get it out of my head. The night before last, C woke up around 3 am and was talking in his bed. (He often wakes up at 5:30 am and is awake for the day, but 3 am was a little early.) I couldn't tell what he was saying in the monitor, so I went into his room to ask what was wrong. He said, "Did we flush my green tanker truck down the toilet?" That was it--bad dream. He's had bad dreams before, but never really had enough language to actually describe it. I assured him it was fine and we should go back to bed. He said he needed to go to the bathroom, so I took him in, and he repeatedly questioned me about the tanker truck, and was I the one who flushed him down the toilet. I tried to assure him his truck was still there and explain exactly what a dream was. He got quieter and went back to sleep, but never really seemed satisfied.
Later that day when we were at church, C leans over to me and whispers, "Are we not going to flush our trucks down the church potty?" While I tried really hard not to laugh, I told him we had no trucks with us and that I would never do that.
After sacrament meeting, I took him to the bathroom. While sitting on the toilet, he points to an almost-gone zit on my face and says, "Is that your owwie?" I said it was but it was almost gone. And he said,"Did you get that when you flushed my trucks down the toilet?" Poor boy. Usually I am slightly annoyed when he points out my occasional zits, but this time I just couldn't help but empathize.
Unfortunately, as adults, we are not immune to bad dreams. I was reading a magazine article about dreams the other day, and they perfectly described my reoccurring adult nightmare--I realize I am late for a final exam for a class I signed up for but forgot to ever attend. I did feel a little relieved that I am not alone in dreaming this because as far as adult nightmares go, this is apparently very popular.
The magazine says this indicates that I am a person to whom achievement is important and I have anxiety in my life....well, duh. I think any woman at my life stage is entitled to a bit of anxiety. After all, it certainly is possible that my son really flushed a toy down the toilet and it wasn't a bad dream at all and I think a little bit of anxiety about that is perfectly normal. But I do also believe our dreams reveal a little about us that we may not have known.
Adam sometimes teases me about all the crazy dreams I have, but sometimes I wonder just what it's all for. One day, I was painting a bookcase white, and I was standing over it moving the paintbrush up and down, and I realized I that had seen this exact picture before. But it was more than dejavu--I remembered where I had seen it before...it was in a dream I had weeks earlier before I ever decided to paint it.
Now please don't think I have any belief in psychic abilities because you won't convince me that painting a bookcase had any significance to anyone--even me. But I do know there are all kinds of things about our brains that science doesn't yet understand. It truly fascinates me, and sometimes I wonder if in another life I might be a neuroscientist and figure it all out.
Maybe I'll dream about that tonight.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

The "Transition"

Since even before C's diagnosis, we have been a part of the First Steps program. It is our state's Early Childhood Intervention program, and provided us with PT and OT at home. I don't think I can explain in words how grateful I am for this program. To have trained professionals come to my home on a weekly basis to check on him, work with us, and assess his and our needs has been one of our greatest blessings. I feel like I am pretty observant and educated, and know my child very well, but they consistently noticed things that I did not. It has been so nice to be able to discuss all these life changes we have to make in the comfort of our own home, and I really truly feel like we have made some great friends.
But then C turned three. And at three, the government steps in and pretty much dumps you out on your own. We could put C in the special needs preschool at the local elementary school, but I'm not too thrilled with them, so we're keeping him at home one more year. If we did send him there, we would have had "transition" meetings and "arc" meetings and all sorts of meeting with the school system, but since we decided to wait a year on preschool we are just on our own.
I can say without shame there have been several times I have cried about this transition. First Steps was there to pretty much anticipate our needs and help us find whatever services and equipment were out there. And now we have to go it alone. I have spent the last month or two scrambling to find recommended therapists, who had space for C, and take our insurance. We also have to give back a lot of the equipment we've borrowed, so we're trying to get that replaced as well through insurance. I mean, some days I really can't see how my life was ever busy before I had all this to do.
And today we had our first visit with the new OT...and I am thrilled!!! It's about a 35 minute drive, but they have great equipment (including a disco ball--not sure why they need that, but it's awesome) and C actually gets to see a man now. I think it is going to be really good for him. The guy does all the same stuff as the other OTs, but from a man's perspective. Hard to explain, but very cool.
***And just as a side note, while we were at the new OT's office this guy came in who is a wheelchair rep we had originally contacted to try to get C the Permobil power chair we wanted. He told us that our insurance just wouldn't pay for that, and we had to get this other chair instead--that's all he showed us, one chair!! (That's like shopping for an SUV, and somebody showing you a Ford Escape and saying, "Yup, that's all there is.") So I see him walk in, and I look away but out of the corner of my eye I see him recognize me, and then look at C's wheelchair and just stare. I'm sure he noticed the big sticker with his competitor's name and number on the back of the chair as well. And I wanted to say, "Yeah, see that? That's cause I don't settle when it comes to my son!"...but instead I just sat there and for one brief moment felt like the best mom ever.***

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Again with the Ramp

So we had another little "wheelchair ramp" issue...but this time was much worse. Our van's AC was being repaired, and we were spending the day at my mother's house waiting for it to be fixed. I have been sick for about a week now, so when C flat-out refused to take a nap my mom graciously agreed to watch him so I could lay down for a few minutes.
So here's the really sad part...as I was trying to drift off to sleep, I kept thinking over and over that the wheelchair was in the back of my mom's van and she was going to have to get it out of there before she picked up her carpool. I kept thinking I should get up and do something about it, but in my half asleep state I never quite convinced my body to do it. Just before I fell asleep I remember thinking I'll help her as soon as I wake up...she won't leave for carpool before she wakes me up.
Yup, wrong about that one. When I woke up, I immediately remembered the wheelchair, and went downstairs to get started. I walked toward the kitchen and my mom was standing in the doorway looking at me. She said, "I had a little accident." (And I'm not really convinced this wasn't all my fault for not listening to the little voice prompting me to go downstairs.)
She had tried to get the chair out of the van herself, which she has done before several times, only this time the ramp slipped and the ramp, with the chair on it, landed on her foot. She doesn't remember, nor can any of us figure out, just how that ramp got off her foot. But she was doing it right before she needed to leave for carpool, so instead of waking me up, she just put a towel down on the floor of her van to catch the blood, and took off. She claims she thought it would be too hard to climb the stairs, but I fully blame it on her frequently-seen "I can do anything even though I am injured" attitude.
After convincing my mom she needed to go to the Urgent Care Center and didn't need to drive herself this time, we jumped in the car to head out. Just then C's PT pulled up to the house to do his therapy, so we left him, the PT, and my sister there together, and headed out once more.
Several stitches, a broken toe, and one ugly-looking walking boot later, mom was patched up good as new. Okay, not good as new, not at all. But she did have Vicodin, so that helps.
And would you believe that after all this, the next day she insisted on running around canning tomatoes from her garden? I'm not sure if she's crazy or amazing, but I supposed I really lean toward the latter. What I do know for sure is that a big factor in all this was my mom's unfailing desire to help me and my family in whatever way she can--a blessing that I am grateful for a thousand times over.

Friday, August 14, 2009

An Early Snow

What do you mean it's not a good idea to let your kid control the speed on the mixer while you're adding the flour to the zucchini bread batter?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Wheelchair Racing at the Zoo

Last Friday we decided to venture out to the zoo and give C some space to roam with the new chair. We didn't quite get to see as many animals as we wanted because he was too busy driving. He's only driven it four or five times, and he is already twice as good as he was at the beginning. He is really learning fast. On this trip, he figured out the "speed" button, that adjusts the speed up and down at four different levels. On the slowest speed, I have to walk slowly beside him, but at the fastest speed I have to do a super fast walk/very slow jog to keep up with him. He would say, "Now I'm going to go fast", and hit the button and take off. And only once did I get my flip-flop ran over...when he got a little distracted and didn't leave enough space for me to walk beside him.

video

He did stop and take one break...to ride the carousel with his Daddy.

video

I am so excited to have this chair. He LOVES driving it and finally having his independence. We got the EOB from our insurance yesterday...they billed $37,000 for the thing and all its parts. Granted, that is the billed amount and what insurance has actually contracted to pay them will be thousands less, but still it made me very, very grateful for the blessing of having that Medicaid program as his secondary insurance because of his diagnosis. I am also so, so thankful for a pediatrician who pushed us to apply for it when we did even though we really didn't see the need back then. Much of this stuff we have to do is really hard to face, but there are awesome little blessings all along the way.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Faith for No Reason

Well, once again, it looks like we might move. About this time last year we put our house on the market, and it has been up and down ever since. For the first month or two, no one looked. I mean no one. We even had an open house and no one came. Little did we know we were moving into a recession and a horrible slump in the housing market.
Then things randomly started to pick up. We had people looking almost every week until the holidays. They all said our house was "in really good condition" or "cute," but no one wanted to buy. Then there was a slump for the holidays, and then things picked up again. We had about three almost offers, but something happened every time.
And then finally--it happened. We had a genuine negotiated and signed offer with a woman who also had a signed contract on her house. We started packing boxes, changing addresses, and saying goodbye...and then the sale on her house fell through. (big sigh)
And now, we just got the news that after relisting her house, she once again has a negotiated and signed offer on her house. Now we just have to wait for the inspection and appraisal on her house to find out if it's a go. (The appraisal and home inspection she did on our house is still valid.)
So, when I first got the news, I was thrilled!! We never thought she'd get another offer so soon, though our real estate agent seemed to have so much hope. But then things slowly went downhill (emotion-wise) as I remembered all we'd been through and how we 'd had failure after failure for a year. Every keeps telling us, "It just takes one!" but after a year of "ones" you start to wonder just how many there are yet to come.
And now, though I am not as ecstatic as I first was upon hearing the news, I can honestly say I am still hopeful. At least in my heart. My head, on the other hand, I think wants to smack my heart in the face and tell it to wake up, but my heart still has this overwhelming faith that it might just workout this time. So hopefully in about two weeks we'll have a good idea what the truth of it is, and if it doesn't work out...well I guess we won't be any worse off than we are now!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

The Wheelchair Accident

In reading this title, I'm sure your first thoughts are that my almost three year-old (who just got a new power wheelchair) had a crash...that is really not all too unexpected as he learns to drive. Nope, not the three year-old...it was me who had the crash.
Yesterday my mom and I took the chair to Sams Club with the realization that a ridiculously large warehouse with wide aisles was pretty much the perfect training ground. He did an amazing job. I walked along next to him, ready to grab his hand off the joystick at any time, and I think I really only had to do it once when he overshot a stopping point. I've gotten to a point where I really don't care if people stare at him in his chair...but really I'm not sure why. Maybe because I'm just so dang excited for him to finally have a way to independently move around wherever he wants to go. Or maybe because in my head I assume they are thinking how awesome it is that a two year-old can drive that thing so well...cause it is. Either way, I loved it and I'm very tempted to take him back there every day.
The accident actually occurred when we arrived back at my mother's house. I put the ridiculously heavy metal ramp on the lip at the edge of the back van door, and started to back the wheelchair down it. Well, apparently the ramp wasn't in quite as stable as a position as I thought because the thing slid backwards, fell to the ground, and our $24000, 250 lb wheelchair flipped itself backward and went down right along with it. I will admit that at this point a word escaped my lips that I never say...mostly because I thought Jenna, who was standing on the other side of the ramp, was caught underneath. But she was fine. The ramp, however, was not. These two loops on the back of the chair were apparently made of stronger metal than the ramp, and they each punched a hole in it. This also made it almost impossible to tip the chair back over--because it was now lodged in the ramp.
But, after a lot of wiggling and pushing, and after the zipper on the chair's headrest punch a small hole in my forehead (still not sure how I did that) we got the thing upright and it was working just fine. My mom took a sledgehammer to the holes in the ramp and all in all, we escaped with just a few scars to remember the incident by.
What I dreaded was telling Adam on the way home. How are you supposed to react to, "Hey remember that super expensive chair we have? Yeah, I dumped it on the ground and punched some holes in the ramp, too." After hearing about it, he was quiet for a minute (as my heart pounded) and then said, "Well really I'm just scared." So I started to ramble something about how I knew how important the stuff was and promise to be so much more careful with it all in the future, and he said, "No, for you guys. I don't want you to get hurt." And while my reaction should have been to say, "Well anyone who thinks I can handle all this equipment on my own is absolutely crazy"...instead I was just thinking how much I love my husband and how grateful I am to be married to a man who fully understands that people are more important than things.
We'll hope for a better experience at the zoo on Friday...and maybe I'll just let Adam use the ramp this time.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

August is SMA Awareness Month

This month is national SMA Awareness Month. This is a little video about the search for a cure.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DncMkpqn_xo

Thursday, July 30, 2009

A Mother's Saving Grace - A Picture

A wise woman (Lynnie) once told me when your kids make a big mess, sometimes all you can do is take a picture.

We have been potty training for quite a few months now. Not my favorite thing. And our bathroom experiences usually ended up like this...with C doing anything on the potty that he could think of except for what he was there for. This, unfortunately, was almost a full roll of Gram's toilet paper. I was shocked he could actually unroll it that fast - I was only out of the door for just a few seconds. And he was so proud of how he "folded" it all for me that I didn't have the heart to be upset.
I was a little worried about the whole process since C isn't exactly able to run in to the potty himself, but since I have found pretty much no two year-olds do that...it really didn't end up making much difference. Months and months later, though I am almost scared to say it aloud, I think we are just about done. C has been wearing the "big boy" underwear for a several days now with just one accident. I want to be excited about all the money we are going to save on diapers, but he finishes just shy of his third birthday--the date the state would start giving them to us for free. Oh well--what can you do.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Making Jam

Here's few pictures of what we found to pass the time on a rainy summer day.

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=27531&id=1375444343&l=dab6e99201

Changes of Season

Lately, at the end of every day, I feel so exhausted and yet I have done nothing. I realized the other day it is because so much has happened to us lately that I haven't had time to mentally process it all...so even if my legs aren't moving much, my mind is just running and running.
At the end of June, we had the opportunity to attend the worldwide FSMA Conference, which was so conveniently located in Cincinnati this year. Adam's mom came with us a well, and as always we are forever grateful for the many ways she shows her love and support to us. The week before we left, I finally told Adam that I was truly scared to go. Not because I would learn anything shockingly new, but because I wasn't sure I could handle being immersed in it all for days at a time. I guess that doesn't make sense much since we live it every day, but Connor is really just a typical almost-three year-old, except that he can't walk. So sometimes it is easy to forget all that has happened, and some of the different possibilities for the future.
After experiencing the conference, I feel it was such a blessing that we were able to go. We did learn a lot about some things that might come up in the future, so that we are much more comfortable with them now. And it was so...well almost relaxing and empowering at the same time...to be with a group of people who all worried about the same things we do. I will carry that feeling with me wherever I go.
I think what impressed me most was the teen and adult panels. They talked about their experiences and what had worked for them and hadn't. It was so amazing to see all that just this small group had accomplished. Between them all they had gone hours away from home for college, swam competitively, given birth to a healthy baby, traveled to Costa Rica, and so much more. They were so open and honest, and as a parent raising a child with this challenge it was so refreshing to hear--I just soaked it all up.
What still stays with me is the words of one well-spoken college-age young woman. A parent asked her something about talking to our children about what they can and can't do, and her comment was that we should never discourage our children from anything, because if we look hard enough and work hard enough, there is a way.
I think that was so what I needed to hear. I am so grateful for the example of her unnamed parent who worked so hard to do just that for her, so I could see just how happy it made her...because I CAN do that too.
We also heard back that Connor's wheelchair was finally approved!!!!!!!!! We saw a chair just like it at the conference, and we are so excited for it do be delivered so C can start learning to drive.
And...just recently we got an offer on our house (finally!!) and if all goes well will probably be moving by the end of this month. I just bought packing tape and sharpies, but that's as far as I've gone. I'm not sure I'm really a rush-around-at-the-last-minute kind of girl, so really I think my hesitancy to start anything stems from the fact that we have spent five of our six years together as a married couple in this home. As a person, as a couple and as a family we have all changed so, so much from when we first got here. We came here as a couple still in school and barely past the first year of married--still pretty much newlyweds. And we leave with a true sense of who we are as a happy family, though much different than what we had pictured. Shelbyville is our home, and as much as I know we need this move my heart is breaking to leave it.
As crazy as all this has been, we still feel enormously blessed that our Father in Heaven has answered our prayers in so many ways. We know that it is in following His timeline that we find the greatest happiness...and though some of this has been and will be hard, we know in the end it will all be worth it.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Trading Places

We've gotten a good laugh lately over all the people we know and love from far away that seem to be passing by Louisville lately, and some of those we love from here seem to be trading places with them. I guess summer is just a busy travel time.
Here's how it's been: my mother and sister flew to Washington state about a week ago. Two of my cousins from Washington are driving from there to Florida and Pittsburgh together and they'll be coming by Louisville twice during the drive. When my mom and sister get back from the west, another cousin, also from the west, will fly out here to spend a few weeks with them. And we are leaving tomorrow to go not very far away--to Cincinnati--for the SMA Conference. We'll be staying with my old roommate's parents there, though that roommate now lives in Florida. Then a few days after we get back, C and I will travel to Virginia to meet up with that roommate from Florida and another old roommate to spend a week together.
You know...every once in awhile my mind wanders back to the "olden" days, and I wonder what someone from the past would think of traveling across the country so much. I can picture in my head being like good ol' Bill & Ted, and climbing in my phone booth to go back in time and pick up Napoleon or Abe Lincoln, or maybe just my great, great, great grandmother. Wouldn't it be exciting to explain, "Look what we can do now" and "That's not a problem any more because we have this." I'm sure they would be shocked to see that I can drive the 25 miles into Louisville to do some morning shopping and be back home in time for naptime, and even more astounded at how far we choose to travel for a quick vacation.
I am sure they would be amazed with some of the incredible obstacles we face now that they never dreamed of. But you know, I think the same could be said for us when we think about their time. I can't help feeling grateful to God that he put me right where I am. I may have a lot of challenges in my life, but one thing is for sure--I would have been a horrible pioneer.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

In My Pretty Garden

When I was a child, and even into high school, I would see my mother reading a gardening magazine or book quite often. She knows the names of so many flowers, and I remember quite a few times when she would tell me the name of some wildflower we'd pass on the side of the road. I always wondered how she could possibly be so interested in flowers that she could spend so much of her time learning about them. But because it seemed to make her so happy, I passed it off as some sort of specialized hobby and accepted it for what it was.

Now I know. I know that planting a flower makes you feel like you're doing something to make your home more beautiful, and a happier place. And that somewhere deep inside you feel that if planting a flower makes your family happy, then doing it makes you happy, too.


And so I garden. Not like my mother does, but I do my little bit that is enough to make me feel content that I've done something good as I walk through our yard.I do not yet have a daughter of my own, but I have a son who loves to sit by me and play while I work...because of course he would never pass up an opportunity to dig in the dirt. We got him his own kid garden tools and "boy" garden gloves (they are blue with worms on them), and he has been asking every day if it is a "warmer" day so we can garden. And though I know he would just as soon rip a flower to pieces as plant it, I am very grateful for this season where he and I can share something that makes us both smile.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Tricycle Triumph - A Very Good Day

Tuesday, I was trying to clean up my house a bit, when I got a call from our real estate agent. I said, "Hello?" and she said, "Is there someone outside your house?" At first I was a little creeped out like it was a random warning about some weird guy hanging out in my front yard, but I quickly realized who it was and (with a big sigh) that I was probably going to have to hurry up and finish cleaning everything because someone wanted to see the house right away. I was right. We made an appointment for them to come back in an hour, and I flew threw the house trying to finish all the cleaning I could while encouraging Connor to scarf down his remaining chicken nuggets and applesauce.

After some last-minute frantic vacuuming, we bounded down the front steps and I told C we were going for a ride on his tricycle. He LOVES his trike. If you look back in the blog to last summer somewhere, I think there's a picture. We got it at Sam's Club, and it is a Lightning McQueen trike, which means a lot more to him this year now that he's so into the movie. It has one of those "parent push" handles in the back, and you can either engage or disengage the his front pedals.

So all last year, I left the pedals disengaged and let him just put his feet on the seperate footrest bar. But he's a little big to reach that properly now, so I just strapped his flip flops under the reals pedals to keep his feet on. Then, just on a whim, I engaged the front pedal figuring whatever push he might give every once in awhile would be good exercise.

I sat him on the trike on back of the driveway, and bent down to pick up my purse, and when I turned around HE WAS PEDALING!! I couldn't believe it!! I started searching the ground to see if there was some mysterious hill in our driveway I never noticed before, and though it does barely angle down toward the street, C was really keeping it going all on his own!!

So we went to for big long walk up and down our street. The street goes uphill a bit, and he needed some pushing going up...and actually I think just about any kid his age would. But on the downhill, he kept it going by himself for the most part, and kept turning around to check on me, saying "Mommy let go!" He was so excited to be independent. But probably not half as excited as I was. And, as I'm sure all our neighbors already think I'm crazy since the fire truck "incident", I really didn't mind walking up and down the road with a few tears on my face.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Everybody Has/Needs a Cell Phone

A few days ago, my mother-in-law, sister-in-law, and our new little niece stopped by to visit. Connor has quickly caught on to the fact that most everyone has a cell phone these days. So his Aunt Jess wasn't there very long before he was asking to see her cell phone. He remember from the last time he saw her that there was a picture of her dog on the phone, and he was dying to see it. Then he said he needed to call somebody, so Jess dialed her husband's number and Connor took it from there.

video

He cracked us up. I was very impressed with how important he seemed to think it was to share the phone with the baby. Lucky for her, she slept through the whole thing. The frog was a toy he found in his toy closet (with some guidance) because he insisted she needed one. I'm so excited to see him as a big brother.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Goodness of Grandparents

As we are pulling together the photos for the adoption, I just cannot get over some of these cute pics with the grandparents. Adam and I feel truly blessed to have the parents we do. It is a hard balance to find--to let your children be adults and manage their own lives, but still be there and willing to lend help when needed. And it seems like we have been through a lot lately, and they have all four been right there to help. I cannot even imagine the length of the list of all the ways they have blessed our lives.

This is Dennis and Kay's cool swingset they put up in their backyard for the grandkids. This is one of my very favorite pictures, because it shows just how much their grandchildren make them happy.

This is my dad and Connor in the brand new sandbox they got him for Easter to use when he visits their house. They do love Connor very much, but I think they also consider it an investment in grandkids yet to come.

Both of our sets of parents continually bless us with advice, their time, and sometimes a little extra something when life has put is in a tight spot. When we first got married, Adam and I joked that shopped for groceries at Kmart (or Kay's Mart, Adam's mom) and Sams Club (or San's Club--short for Sandy, my mom) because with our money so tight, our parents let us "shop" in their pantries to help out. And even now, we still to get groceries from both places occasionally.

We are so grateful for their love and that--come what may--they will always be behind us to give support if we need it.

Monday, April 20, 2009

The Letter

I am having a little trouble. I am supposed to be working on our "Letter to the Birthparents" for the adoption, but I am having trouble. Not because I don't know what to say, but because there is so much to say. I guess I'm glad the birthparent is not here to talk to in person just yet until we can get our thoughts together in this letter, because I'd probably overwhelm them telling them all about how we're happy and excited, and Connor wants to be a big brother and asks when the baby is coming, and about our home and our awesome and supportive family, and the things that make us laugh and what's been hard for us.

I know we're not perfect parents, but we provide Connor with lots and lots of love and support, and will of course do the same for our other children. We are soooooooooo excited to add to our family, but finding the right words to convey that to someone else is just a little hard. I want this letter not to be too cheesy, but the truth....well the truth is cheesy. The truth is that the love of a parent for a child is one of the very strongest bonds there is...and therefore describing it is just going to sound a little cheesy I guess. I want the birthparents to have the opportunity to get to know us, and then they'd know! They'd know how much we will cherish their child and what an opportunity it is to have their baby become a part of our lives. But...I guess it's not really feasible for them to get to know every birth couple intimately. So, I guess we'll just do our best and know that the baby that is meant to come to our family will come...and we'll love them forever.

Okay, I'm ready to start again. Wanna get some progress made before Adam gets home to help.

Monday, April 6, 2009

And then the Fire Truck Came

We've had a pretty bad week. The worst of the days, at least for me, was the day the fire truck came.

I had parked my van behind Adam's car, so when he left for work in the morning he moved my van out in front of our house. Since another car was parked there also, Adam blocked our mailbox just a little. Later on in the morning, I realized our mortgage needed to go out in the mail and the mailman had already gone down one side of the street. I grabbed my keys and told Connor (who was playing in his room) that I'd be back in a sec, and went to move the van back to the driveway and put the mortgage in the mailbox.

Just so you realize, I had gotten in late the night before so I didn't wash my face and had old makeup on. I definitely had not showered and had just pulled my crazy hair up with a hair band, and I threw on an old sweatshirt (without a bra) and just walked quickly out figuring I'd be back in about 30 seconds.

I was wrong. As I was walking out, I thought I'd just go ahead and lock the door. I knew I'd be just a sec, but I was going to be inside the van and there were some people outside. When I was done, I came back to the front door to unlock it, and realized I didn't have my house key. When I left on my trip, I put it in the diaper bag for my mother-in-law to use, and I never got it back out. I immediately knew there were no unlocked doors or windows, cause I'm pretty careful about that. I went over to C's bedroom window, and yelled through the window that I was stuck outside but I'd be back in a few minutes. He was okay for a bit, but then he started crying that he wanted me to pick him up, and I felt my panic level rise about 3 points.

Just then my neighbor walked outside and I went frantically running over to her begging for her cell phone. I called Adam and he said he'd be home as soon as he could. So then I went back to C's window to wait. I was so scared something would happen to him that I just wanted to keep him talking to me through the window. His window was about even with my mouth, and unfortunately some cat had decided to do his business in my flower bed just below the window so I was straddling that with my bare feet and trying to sound calm to C. Then I remembered a bucket on the side of the house that maybe I could stand on and avoid the you-know-what. So I ran around and got the bucket, forgetting that it had been outside all winter...and when I went to stand on it the bottom gave way and I fell through. Awesome.

So I started looking around for other options, and noticed my neighbor's woodpile. I grabbed the biggest log I could find...and somewhere in my distressed mind I thought my adrenaline would help me carry it or something. Nope. I almost fell over about three times on the way back to the window. I got up on the log and started trying to talk to C again, but this time all I got was total silence. The kid doesn't go anywhere fast, so I really started to freak out then. I didn't know what to do, so I just went back to the front porch and cried.

Just about then, as the old makeup was streaming down my cheeks, the mailman showed up. When I told her my disabled child was stuck in the house, she immediately called 911, and after telling me the police were on their way went on delivering mail. I went back to the porch, just in time to see Adam pull up. He rushed out of his car with his key and unlocked the door...and not 10 seconds later up pulled the fire truck.

Okay, so I have to say this part confused me greatly because I wasn't sure exactly what they had planned to do with the fire truck to help me out. Were they going to climb up the ladder and come in through the chimney? And because it is little Shelbyville, behind the fire truck came one of the fire station SUVs for backup. And I knew they were all thinking I was crazy because I obviously did not appear locked out. So I looked up at Adam, who was hugging both Connor and me, and said, "You gotta go out there and tell them you just got here. I am a mess and I can't go out there."

So Adam walked outside to talk to them...and just then C noticed the super cool fire truck parked in front of our house, and insisted on going to see it. I was so happy to have him back, I just wanted to do whatever would make him happy. So I walked him and me outside--crazy hair, makeup everywhere, bra-less and all--to see the fire truck. And wouldn't you know it, a guy from our church just happened to be driving the truck that day. Double awesome. I was hoping maybe I looked so crazy he wouldn't recognize me, but with Adam and C there I guess there could be no mistaking me.

So what's the good part of this? Well, I will tell you how impressed with my husband I was. I was sure he was going to be mad at me, but he didn't say a thing. He just hugged us, and then was sad when he had to leave us to go back to work because he was worried I was upset...just exactly the reaction I needed to feel a little better. And C was so excited about it all that for a few days he told every new person we ran into that, "The firemen helped mommy."

Friday, April 3, 2009

Adoption Update

Our adoption worker helper person (what is his official title?) called us and said the Adoption Committee would be meeting on Monday, and we will find out if our home study is approved. I think we have everything in order and no reason to be denied, but for some reason I'm still nervous. If all goes well with that, then we just have to finish our website...and then we're ready to be chosen! It seems like this all has gone so fast...but I know there is still more to do. We are so excited to have a new member of our family!! Say a prayer for us!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Falling Apart and Coming Together

My mom called at 8:30pm last night. I was hoping instead it was the real estate agent, calling to say one of the people who looked at our house on Saturday put in an offer (the same sad hope I have every time she calls), but no luck there. I greeted my mom with the usual, "How are you?" and her reply was, "I've been better." From her tone I knew it was not an emergency thing, but a sad thing, so I walked out to the living room with Adam and sat down on the couch.

She told me that my grandma, her mother, had passed away. My grandma was not a young grandma by any stretch...my mother is the eighth of my grandma's ten children and now a grandmother herself ...and my grandma had health problems too numerous to list. But it still came as a bit of a surprise, as we had no notice she was having any serious health issues.


My sisters, cousins and I have all expressed the same thing...that we have this strange mix of joy and sadness. We know that Grandma was prepared for death, and missed my grandpa, who died in an accident 15 years ago. I have no doubt that she is much happier now than she has been in a long time.

But for some reason, that perfect knowledge still couldn't hold back my tears. I have wandered around for most of the day in a haze. I forget what I'm about to do the instant after I decide to do it...I can't remember where I put anything...I keep forgetting what I am supposed to do and where I'm supposed to go. I am flying out to the funeral on Thursday, but I can't even begin to think about what to pack...especially since Connor will be staying home with his dad, and I actually don't have to pack for a kid. It's as if I can see the pieces of myself scattered about...and I know I'm all here but I just can't find the will to put myself back together just right now.

But I can tell you what I do know--family is coming. That side of my family has over 50 first cousins, and lots of them have kids of their own now as well. Many of them I haven't seen in years and years, and even though it is a sad reason for such a gathering, I am so excited to be there. I feel so, so blessed to have such a wonderful and supportive family who in times like these have the innate and automatic reaction to pull together and comfort each other. I know that they are exactly what I need right now. What a blessing it is to be born into families, so that we have the opportunity to know others well enough to help them along their way.

Friday, March 20, 2009

The Outage and the Full Moon

I got special permission to tell this story, cause it the hardest I've laughed in quite some time.

A few nights ago, Adam and I were gearing up for the Big East Conference Championship (basketball, for those of you blessed with husbands less interested in sports) where our team, the Louisville Cardinals, would be playing for their first conference title since joining this conference. Just a few minutes before the game was supposed to start, our power suddenly blinked and then the entire house went dark.

Adam and I stared at each other in disbelief. We've lived in this house for about five years, and have yet to loose power--even through the windstorm of Ike and the ice storm a few months ago. We opened our front door, and walked out into the front yard under a perfectly clear sky. All our neighbors still had power, except for our neighbors in the house just to our left, who had also walked out into their front yard. We chatted and it was decided we would both call the power company in the hopes of getting a faster repair.

I think the guy at the power company must have been angry I took him away from his book or something, because I have never felt more stupid than I did talking to him. I told him the power was out, and he asked me if "all" of it was out, or just some. (I'm thinking, "Yup, I turned out the lamp and then called you.") Then he wanted to know if there was a noise when the power went out. I told him just the noise of it going off. So he told me that electricity is "mysterious" (he seriously said that) and doesn't make a sound when it goes out, as if he's catching me in a lie or something. I told him I meant the noise the TV and everything else in the house made when it suddenly went off. So then he asked if it is just us, or other people on our street. I told him it was us and just the neighbor next door, and he tells me that no, it should be us and then next five houses. So at this point I start to wonder if he actually shut our power off himself since he seems to know so much. I tell him it is only us, and he keeps insisting more people should be without power and wants us to check again. He asks if I am calling from a phone I can take outside. (Now it is my turn to be sassy) So I tell him since the power is out our cordless phone doesn't work. At that point I was fed up, so I told him to call Adam's cell phone and talk to him. Adam finally convinced him we weren't making it up, and the guy agreed to send a truck out.

Once the truck arrived, the workman walked back along the backyard fence between our house and our neighbors' house to shine his flashlight on the transformer. Adam and I had nothing better to do with no power, so we both pressed our faces against the glass of the two tall windows in the kitchen in the back of our house to watch.

Suddenly, the workman turned, shined his flashlight back toward the house, and started to walk toward us. Adam had walked away from the window a few seconds earlier, but I just stood there like a deer in the headlights. I couldn't figure out if I should run away so he wouldn't see me gawking at him in my thin nightgown, or stand there and pretend I was casually looking out the window at something else in the darkness. I started questioning Adam about what I should do and if he thought the workman could really see me. In the panic, I guess my fight-or-flight response must have finally kicked in because almost involuntarily I whipped around to run back toward the center of the room.

And when I did, that's when I saw it--the full moon. Adam was standing in the middle of the kitchen, mooning the workman (and me). Truthfully, I really doubt the workman could see. But instead of worrying about if the guy saw me, I found myself rolling on the floor, laughing harder than I have in a long time.

You gotta love a man who can diffuse a tense situation.

So it turned out the transformer was bad, and they had our power back on in a few hours. Sorry, no pictures for this post...I'll just keep that one to myself. But I'll be laughing for a long time.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Who's-its and What's-its Galore

We have moved on to the next phase of the adoption!
This past week, we went up to Indianapolis to have our interviews--couple and individual--with our adoption worker. Of course, we stressed it out way too much, and it was really very simple. The guy is really nice to talk to, and it was very easy going and friendly. The worst part was that we checked several sources and somehow still got bad information about what time zone Indianapolis is in (Eastern, in case you were wondering) and showed up 30 minutes late instead of the 30 minutes early we had planned. Luckily they didn't have any other interviews that day so it all worked out fine.
Connor, who has been dragged on trip after trip to see doctor after doctor, kept saying we were going to Cincinapolis. We finally convinced him of the true name, and now he randomly says, "I want to go to Indianapolis" about once a day. So I guess he had a good experience too.
Then yesterday, we had our home visit. Luckily, with the house being for sale we are used to picking everything up and just where to put it. And since we already have a child, everything was already thoroughly baby-proofed, so it was a breeze as well. Sweet Sharon Leezer, the adoption specialist for our stake, came over and stayed with me while he was here to have two women in the house so it wasn't just me and our adoption worker (agency rules).
So now, we have to create a website that talks about us and our family, as well as paper copies of the same thing. We have to put together pictures of us, as well as answer "What do you think about..." and "Who would you..." and "If you could..." type of questions. And then from there once everything is approved and the home study is written up, we are ready to be selected! So, my question is if anyone has any suggestions about digital scrapbooking. I guess that is how most people do the paper sheets. I have done just a tiny bit of stuff--mostly for the blog, but I think I am going to need to know more.
Wish us luck!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Love of Strangers

On Sunday, my niece, Lola, was blessed. It was so fun for all our family to be together, and she is a gorgeous little girl that I am excited to get to know. But my eyes kept drifting to the family a few rows ahead of ours in the chapel with a young child with Downs Syndrome.

My cousin recently found out that the little girl she is carrying has Downs Syndrome. My thoughts keep turning to her and her family over and over in a way I don't think they ever would have before my Connor was diagnosed with his disorder. There is something that bonds us all together--all of us moms who have to deal with the pain of watching our children struggle with more than it seems they should have to bear, and with the painful knowledge of the struggles they will face in their future.

In two weeks it will be one year since we received Connor's diagnosis. In that one year, I can't say my day-to-day life has really changed that much. C still gets his same OT and PT as he was then, and he is just as happy as always. But I know I have changed.

When he was first diagnosed, I cried every day. I couldn't sleep with all the thoughts and worries and anxiety. Some days I wanted to hold him so tight, and some days it was hard to just see him and be reminded over and over of this new knowledge of his SMA. Little thoughts would pop into my head for a millisecond, that maybe I didn't get enough of some vitamin, or maybe something hit my belly really hard while I was pregnant...but then I would remind myself that this was genetic, and there was nothing I could have done. I cried after every new doctor's visit and physical therapy appointment, because it was so hard to go through the story of how we found out over and over again and rehash those initial feelings only to end the appointment being told all the things my son couldn't or wouldn't do in their particular area of expertise.

At this, one of the most difficult times of my life, one of the very greatest blessings I had came from perfect strangers. I started to meet moms and dads from all over the country whose children also had SMA. From the very first phone call or email, each and every one was willing to pour our their hearts to us with love and reassurance that they too felt just what I was feeling, and yes it does get a little better, and these are the things you might face, but these are some great resources that can help you. One mom gave me names of several families in our region of the country, and now we've met many of them. Another mom had just gotten her son's diagnosis a month before we did, and emailed with me during the hardest part, just as a different mom had done/was doing for her. I think Connor has six different blankets, most from people I have never personally met, sent to us to show their love and support when they heard about him.

And now, I still cry (like right now) about the diagnosis, and when C tells me he wants to stand up or gets frustrated when his body just won't move like it should. But I know now that if I did the last year, I can do this too. I know we have so many family and friends who love us and support us. And I know I have a huge network of people out there I have never met who know exactly what I'm going through and will do anything to help me.

So that is what I wish for my cousin...that she will know there are so many of us out here who love and support her, and that she will find those strangers but soon-to-be friends who know just what she is going through to help her along the way.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The Valentine Bandit Strikes Again

Growing up it was our family tradition that each Valentine's Day the Valentine Bandit would leave presents on our doorstep. Sometime during the day, we would hear a knock at the door and the doorbell would be run repeatedly. My sister and I would race to the front door, fling it open, leap over the gifts, and rush out into the yard in an attempt to capture the ever-elusive Bandit.

When I went to college, the Valentine Bandit found his way to whatever apartment I was living in, but this time he just sent a lovely bouquet of flowers. And now that I am married and have my own little family, a new Bandit has joined their ranks and once again visited our house this past V-day and brought some gifts for Connor.

This past year C had his birthday, and then came September (when most of the rest of the DeLucas were born), and then soon shortly after was Christmas. So he has gotten pretty used to the idea that every month or so he gets some presents. When we explained what the Valentine Bandit was, he started to ask every day if it was Valentine's Day. And when the doorbell finally rang, I wish I had taken a picture of the look of pure excitement that was on his face. This is what he found.


Then we went for a little visit to my parents house...and wouldn't you know a Valentine Bandit showed up there, too. Can you tell that C likes "Lie-Queen" (aka Lightning McQueen)?

And now, he asks every day when the Easter Bunny is coming.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Imagination at Work

This morning, I was in the kitchen reading a magazine, when I started to hear C's little voice say, "These are my new eyes. These are my NEW eyes." I figured I'd better go check on him before he did some sort of permanent eye damage. When I walked in the living room, this is what I saw.
That kid can make anything out of mega blocks.

C is also discovering ways of communicating that aren't just the words in the dictionary. At lunch a few minutes later, (after coating his face with pudding) he began his new favorite past time, which I like to call the Shhh-Ahhhhhhhh Cycle.
(Press pause on the music player at the bottom of the blog to hear it best.)

video

He even figured out that you need the finger in front of your mouth to make the "Shh" correct. I bet you have no idea just how long a two year-old can keep this up. In public places. Quiet public places. Ah the joys of motherhood.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

We're Adopting

If you read my blog way back in early last year, you know that we want to have more children, but were unsure about what to do with so many options. If none of this had happened with Connor, we would already have had our second child...but genetics complicated things a little.

Now, after much thought and prayer, we have decided to adopt. We are pretty excited about the decision. The minus would of course be the worries about the finality of a birth mother/father's decision to terminate their parental rights. While we are aware of that, we feel that this is the path the Lord wants us to take and that all things will work out as they should.

And...there are sooo many pluses. Adam's family has quite a few connections to adoption, including a sister who is an adoption worker, so we feel comfortable with the idea and have some knowledge beforehand of how things work. We will get to provide a happy and loving home to a child and grow our family, and Connor will get a sibling. He is pretty excited about it and has already told us a brother or sister is coming to "stay at our house."

So, now all the craziness begins. We have a zillion forms to fill out and send off, and I think some of you we've talked to might be getting some forms too. And we have interviews, and home visits, and maybe in a little over a year, a new addition to our family!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Iced In

These are adventurous times. Last night, with several inches of snow on the ground and an ice storm looming, we decided to make the perilous trip to my parents' house. Our gas logs weren't working, and with the threat of a power outage we thought it better to be where there was a generator, space heaters, a wood-burning fire place, lots of food, and we would be closer to Adam's work. An hour later, we made it there after passing an accident where an SUV was way off the shoulder of the freeway, in the woods where it had hit a tree facing backwards. Don't ask me how that happened.

The freezing rain started, and by 10pm we began to hear loud crashes as branches broke all over the neighborhood. Unfortunately, a rather large branch fell on my parents, old van. Luckily, their new Odyssey was safe in the garage. My dad, Jenna, and I ventured out to take a look, trying to be careful to avoid all the old trees that might have branches that could fall.
It was gorgeous and menacing at the same time, if that is possible...especially because we were due for 3 more inches of snow the next day.
This morning we woke up and got an even better picture of just how bad things are. School is cancelled for the rest of the week. So, in celebration, we took Connor out for his first try at sledding...and he loved it! We picked a path that was not underneath any trees and away we went!

Jenna had a few wipeouts.
Connor found out there was a very cool tool associated with snow...the snow shovel. He might have liked that even more than the sledding. The only shoes we brought were his slippers and we only had a 4T size snowsuit, so we rubberbanded the feet to keep the snow out (in case you were wondering why he looked like Lt. Dan).
Even when he got a little bit of snow in his eyes, he was still a good sport and wanted to go right back up the hill again.
And, my parents are in the minority that still has power, so we'll probably just stay holed up here tonight, and eat scones and play Wii, hoping for better weather tomorrow.


Sunday, January 25, 2009

"Not Me" Monday

An idea from a friend...
  • I did NOT purposely not do the dishes because I knew my husband would do them when he got home.
  • And of course I did NOT snatch the bread tray out of the deacon's hand because I was mad at my child for being so loud in church.
  • And I would NEVER ignore both the first and the second friend requests on Facebook from someone I barely knew in high school...that would be heartless.
  • I did NOT lie to my child and say we did not have any suckers...just cause I didn't want to clean it up.
  • I was NOT the person who used up the toilet paper without replacing the roll.
  • I would NEVER let my child watch 3 movies in one day...just to have some time to actually get something accomplished.

I would never do those things, because I am a perfect wife and mother. Of course.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Photo Tag

I am supposed to post the 6th picture from the 6th folder of my pictures. Well...odds are it was going to be this.

Connor. We have about a thousand million bizillion pictures of our little boy. He loved to play with our laundry basket, and really still does. He thought it was so cool to tip it over, and then if we put it on his head he would laugh and laugh...until he realized it was a little too awkward to get off on his own. These days, he likes to use it as a basketball goal and throw his blocks into it. (If it is unfortunately not present, he'll just chuck them across the room as hard as he can.) It also functions well as a racecar to zip across the carpet with him inside. He loves to go fast. We're still a little worried about the chair that can go 5 mph, but I guess we'll just take it as it comes.
Oh, so I guess I'm supposed to tag 6 people. Hmmm...Lynnie, Megan L., Laura, Erin, Stephanie, and Jill.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The "Large Equipment" Mechanics

Ever since we got our new crib, Connor has been really into "fixing" things. The crib came with this little monkey wrench, and C carried it around with him everywhere for a week. For Christmas Santa brought him a "real" tool set, and he loves it. It came with this sweet tool belt that he likes to wear around. Whenever he sees Adam fixing something, he says he needs his screwdriver and proceeds to poke in the middle of whatever his dad is doing with his tools. Then, the other day he was being too quiet in his room...you know, the too quiet where you know they are probably into some type of trouble. So I go in there, and this is what I see.


He was silently working and totally absorbed. So when I ask what he's doing, he tells me his firetruck was broken, and so of course he is fixing it.

Sure love that kid. And if he really had those skills I could have used him when earlier this week I ran over something in the road that ripped a hole down the side of my tire. Luckily, a real "large equipment mechanic" that works for the state of Kentucky stopped with his "cool" truck with flashing lights (according to C), and got us back on the road in no time. I could have changed it myself, but it was FREEZING outside, and I had no gloves/scarf/hat and a very thin jacket. Normally I would have been freaked out at a stranger stopping, but he did have a state vehicle with the seal and everything, and was obviously doing his best to make me recognize he wasn't creepy. He told me about his kids and that he lived in Waddy (a real town name) and that he'd want somebody to stop and help his wife if they were stuck on the side of the road in 15 degree weather. As I drove away, I saw him stopping again to help another car further down the road that obviously hit the same thing I did.

When we got back on our way I called Adam again to tell him what happened. (He would have come to help, but he was 30 minutes away and I knew he was having a very busy day at work so I convinced him I could do it myself.) He said he was glad I got help and that he had said a prayer for me. I'm pretty grateful that there are still good people in this world, and that God sends them your way when you need them.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

KAFOs & IKEA

Monday we took a little trip up to Cincinnati, to "The Brace Shop." Connor is in desperate need of knew KAFOs, or Knee-Ankle-Foot Orthoses. (Aren't you impressed with my new vocab words?) Basically, they are the full-leg braces with the bar up the sides that allow him to lock his knees back to walk in the walker.

The last time we were at the orthotist here in Louisville, they said the ones he has now (that we got just in April and cost $4000) would maybe last until December or January. He has to walk once or twice a day in them for about an hour, so we really need braces that work. Yesterday I noticed he was starting to get some pretty bad red marks at his knees and upper thighs, so the sooner the better.

We went to The Brace Shop because our neurologist wrote a prescription for a special new type of braces they do there. The orthotist from there went to England and trained with the doctors who created these. They have a little "shelf" in the back that goes under his bottom, so that he can have more stability when he walks and maybe even stand independent of the walker! They also have a hinge at the knee, instead of these horrible 3-strap leather things we have now that totally do not work. And if that all wasn't enough, the plastic has these pictures of trains, planes, cars and trucks on it. I am sooo excited!! No really, I am. These things are a part of our life now and it is so great to hope we'll have something that works even better.

So Connor got casted for the braces, and in 3 weeks we will go back for a fitting and then we get to take them home. Then we'll go back up and have training with the Cincinnati Children's PT on the braces, and see how they help.

So while we were in Cincy, we decided to visit the IKEA. Oh my word, I love that store. I think they should have an income limit, and if you're household income isn't at least $X you should not be allowed in the store because it is pretty much guaranteed you're going to spend way too much. I will say though, that I actually did pretty good. I am the proud new owner of a new set of children's dishes (plates, cups, bowls, and silverware), cutting boards, and a mortar and pestle (thanks, Mom). But...I think we'll be going back again soon.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

How BYU Are You?

The other night, I was having these dreams of my BYU days. It was really weird cause I was back at BYU, but somehow also married...and yet Adam didn't live with me. Only in a dream.

Anyway, then my awesome cousin, Merry, had this on her blog, so I thought I'd fill it out. And, I expect all my friends who ever went to BYU, BYU-I/Ricks, or even lived in Provo to fill this out.

77 questions.

[X] You have been kissed at lease once
[_] Your first kiss was on campus
[X] You’ve had a boyfriend/girlfriend
[X] You lived in the dorms your freshman year
[X] You went to Homecoming or Preference
[X] You hiked the Y
[_] You’ve taken a social dance class
[X] You regularly attended FHE for at least a semester
[X] You’ve participated in Choose to Give
[_] You’ve been to Liberty Square for a party at least once
[X] You’ve driven around south of campus for at least 20 minutes trying to find a parking spot[X] You know the cougar fight song
[X] You’ve crossed the crosswalk without using the flags or biked through a red light
[_] You’ve been to Friday Night Live
[X] You’ve performed or witnessed an act that made it onto Police Beat
[_] You’ve been on a “date” to the bell tower or duck pond
[X] You’ve been to the Bean Museum for FHE
[X] You’ve been to Divine Comedy
[X] You’ve been to International Cinema
[_] You are engaged
[X] You are married
[X] …in the temple
[_] You were previously engaged/married
[X] You have kids or are expecting kids
[X] Your birth parents are still married
[X] …in the temple
[X] You have at least three siblings
[X] You’ve taken a marriage prep or relations class
[X] You’ve taken at least one religion class that is not based on the scriptures
[X] You have slept on a couch in a restroom
[X] You have been to the BYU Creamery
[X] You have been in one of the BYU choirs
[_] You’ve been on a date to Fat Cats
[X] You have read Twilight
[X] …book 2
[X] …book 3
[X] …book 4
[X] …seen the movie
[_] …more than once
[_] You’ve waited in line at the Bookstore for the Harry Potter or Twilight book premiere
[X] You have seen The Singles Ward or Sons of Provo
[X] You have walked out of a movie you found morally reprehensible
[_] You know where the “chastity line” is
[X] You can finish the phrase “Nothing good happens after ______”
[X] You read the Daily Universe at least 3x a week
[X] …and it’s the only newspaper you read
[X] You’ve personally known someone who was reported to the Honor Code Office
[_] You’ve participated in or watched a Mr. BYU contest
[X] You’ve received personal revelation that he/she is “the one” (or been told this)
[X] …and told him/her about your revelation (or been told this)
[_] …and then they rejected you (or rejected them)
[_] You’ve been to the Nickelcade
[_] You’ve been to Classic Skating
[X] You’ve ignored your parents’ phone calls for at least 3 days
[_] …and then they called the University Police
[_] You’ve been pulled over by the University Police
[X] You watch The Office religiously
[X] You mostly wear jeans and t-shirts or plain fitted shirts
[X] You own at least 3 things from American Eagle or Hollister
[_] Your sacrament meeting is a fashion show/scam session
[X] You’ve been on a date to the Provo River

You’ve kissed in a…
[_] …campus parking lot
[_] …Provo Canyon or Squaw Peak
[_] …on temple grounds
[_] …on a couch as soon as your roommates left the room
[_] You think UVU is not a real university
[_] You hate U of U with a passion

FOR GIRLS (don’t answer if you’re a guy)
[X] You own knee-length shorts
[X] You regularly wear camisoles/undershirts for modesty reasons
[X] You are a MFHD, RMYL, Elementary Education, or Exercise Science Major
[X] Your major crush ended up dating a MFHD, RMYL, Elementary Education, or Exercise Science major
[X] You have had at least one roommate who is in hair or dental school
[X] You own The Italian Job or The Princess Bride
[X] You wear makeup at least 3x a week
[X] You do something with your hair (other than brush it/ponytail) at least 3x a week
[_] You went or plan on going on a mission
[_] …because you couldn’t get married

FOR GUYS (don’t answer if you’re a girl)
[_] You shave every (or almost every) morning
[_] You know when your hair is “too long”
[_] You know what the “divide by 2 and add 7″ dating rule is
[_] …and you follow it
[_] You’ve dated freshmen girls as a RM
[_] …when you already knew better
[_] You’ve used the phrase “On my mission…” to a girl
[_] At least 3 girls have baked cookies or meals for you
[_] You went or plan on going on a mission
[_] …because you wanted to get married

TOTAL: 51

A: 68-77
B: 60-67
C: 53-66
D: 45-52
F: 44 or below

Wow. I guess I should have kissed more people someplace on campus. Ha! No thanks!

Monday, January 5, 2009

The Sports Widow's Log

A few of Adam's friends' wives and I sometimes joke that we're sports widows. Except for us, our husbands pretty much live and breathe sports, and it is all they talk about when they get together. This year, I was privileged enough to actually be the one invited when Adam got two tickets to the University of Louisville (UofL) vs. University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV) game on New Year's Eve. I had a great time, but I realized along the way that the experience was a little different for each of us...

Adam wanted to rush to our seats to see his favorite part--when they introduce the players.
I am completely focused on reaching the bathroom. I had a baby and now when I gotta go, I gotta go.
Adam notices how many Louisville fans are there for the sold out game.
I notice how funny the people look who are dressed in tuxedos and evening gowns--obviously going out after the game. But seriously, wearing heels in bleachers is asking for trouble.
Adam is already angry at Louisville who is already behind when we get to our seats.
I am THRILLED with our seats--5 rows from the floor!! I can yell at T-Will and he'll hear me! I can see the sweat on Rick Pitino's face and actually hear him yelling.
Adam yells at the refs for totally missing the fact that T-Will got fouled about 3 times on one lay-up.
I notice the ref is wearing pants with 4 (count em...4) pleats on EACH SIDE! Where could you even find pants like that? Uh, the 80s called. They want their pants back.
Adam tries to get up on a chair to wave his arms during UNLVs free throws (since we were behind the basket).
I wave my arms like a mad woman to join in, and Adam (lovingly) tells me I'm a dork. Little does he know I considered lifting my shirt up to fake-flash them....cause I had two shirts on underneath. I hope my mom's not reading this.
Adam gets excited by how loud everyone cheers when T-Will raises his arms up to get the crowd going after they take foul shots.
I am totally preoccupied by the peculiar woman seated beside me. During each foul shot, she rubs her hands together as if making a fire, and then does this whip up thing with her right arm and holds the Louisville "L" in the air. If they make the shot, she makes a swishing motion with her hand. And her face is completely blank, as if all her weird hand motions are as everyday as breathing.
Adam starts making a "T" sign with his hands and pointing it at the UNLV bench, along with the rest of the crowd.
I am completely befuddled as to why everyone is motioning for a timeout when UNLV has clearly already taken one. Turns out the "T" is for technical for their potty-mouth coach. Ahhhh.
Adam is heartbroken when his team loses by one point.
I cheer him up the next day, by finding his picture on the front page of the Courier-Journal Sports section. It's up top--follow the player number zero's waistline to the right and about halfway between the player and the edge of the picture is Adam's face. Black jacket with a red shirt.
We really did have a great time. A wise woman (Vicki O'Brien) once told me you can find much happiness if you learn to love what your husband loves, and I do. Anyone who has known me for awhile knows that a lot of those sports words never used to be in my vocabulary. I really do love Louisville sports...in fact, as I write this I am hanging out in a Louisville long-sleeve T. And, believe it or not, I love that Adam loves it...especially when I am very secure in the knowledge that as much as Louisville sports is his passion, he loves me just a little bit more.