Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A little help?

Last time I posted I talked a little about some folks that are in desperate need of some assistance, both of the spiritual kind and the temporal kind. Looks like the internet is banding together to help out this wonderful family that has touched so many lives.

They have declared tomorrow Nie Nie Day and several websites and readers of Stephanie's Blog are donating items to help contribute to her and Christian's recovery fund.

I have made a little donation of my own (see above picture) and hope that you will go take a look the all the amazing items up for auction.

It's a chance to reach out and help some people that have truly made themselves a force for good.

Go check it out!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Savor the moment

Just so you know...Having a brood of sick children is detrimental to blogging.

I know, I comes as a big surprise. After all, you should be able to just sit and wipe a snotty nose here and there or give a hug or two and everyone should be happy vegetating on the couch. You would think that would leave plenty of time for internet surfing and blog typing. Not so, my friend.

It pretty much sucks the life out of you and anyone else that haplessly wanders by.

So much so that YOU get sick.

And then there's no one there to wipe your nose and give you a hug and WHY IN THE WORLD would they let you sit on the couch and vegetate when they all feel better and have been cooped up in the house for a week and a half.

And you start feeling very sorry for yourself...

And then...

Things happen to remind you how you should be grateful for all these snot covered moments.

I don't know if you blog stalk like I do, but there are quite a few that I like to read when I have the time. A couple of those are C Jane and her sister Nienie.

This last weekend Nienie and her husband were in a horrible plane crash. The pilot passed away shortly after arriving at the hospital and Nienie (Stephanie) and her husband (Christian) are suffering from serious burns among other things.

There's more to the story if you care to follow the links, but it has effected me more than I would have thought (since I've never actually met them).

It has raised so many questions in my mind: What would I do if something like that happened to me, or Matt...or both of us? So many questions, and not enough answers. I have pondered a lot about their situation and their little family and me heart goes out to them and all those that love them. How quickly life changes...

As I was thinking about them and the questions their situation has brought to my mind, I got a text message from my brother-in-law.

It appears that the excitement about the kidney transplant for Angie was premature. Matt's little brother Aaron is no longer a match...which means we are searching for a donor again. It's tough news to take, especially after she has come so far and done so much knowing that a kidney was waiting for her as soon as she was well enough.

It is still sinking in.

Out of the few coherent thoughts that I've had about it all, I'm most keenly aware that life is a very precious, very delicate thing. And sometimes it takes things like these to remind us of it.

Every moment is one that we should savor...

...even if it's covered in snot.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Family Reunion

We had our big ol' family reunion this weekend with all my dad's brothers and sisters. I was able to see several aunts, uncles and cousins that I haven't seen for a long time. It's amazing how much everyone changes in a year!

I spent most of the time wrangling the rugrats. But I did get to talk to some nieces and nephews that I haven’t chatted with for a while to get caught up on their news. Some of the biggest headlines in the immediate family:

Mandy is expecting baby #1 (a girl!) and is due in December.

Stefanie is engaged! She and Tyson are getting married December 20th. (Looks like December is going to be a big month!)

Shannon and Shantel are almost done with their respective schooling endeavors. And my sister Jill is just starting up.

Lyssa sat and nursed this bottle of bug juice for about 15 minutes. (Good thing we took it out of the paper bag!)
Check out how red her cheeks are. They were playing so hard!

Mom spent some of the time with Grandma to get some people in old family photos identified. (Check out the set up they’ve got there. A digital photo frame and 3 laptops…poor almost 96 year old grandma was a little over-whelmed!) It was such a cute picture seeing the two of them together trying to figure out who everyone was.

We ended with the traditional water fight (the girls had fun dumping water on each other as you can see in the photos). You should see how fast people can move when that water starts to fly.

It was just a nice relaxing day to hang out and catch up with everyone.

Friday, August 8, 2008


We took the kids in to the doctor for their regular check-ups this afternoon.

Is it crazy to anyone besides me that 6 month old Liam is only 7 pounds lighter than his almost 3 year old sister?

Anyway...everyone is healthy. Liam will NOT have to wear a helmet after all. Such a relief! It only would have been for 6 weeks, but oh what a long 6 weeks it would have been.

Shots were traumatic...more for McKenna than for Liam (Alyssa lucked out this go 'round). Heavens, you would have thought they cut her leg off. She gingerly coaxes her pants over each band aid every time she goes to the bathroom. Liam just cried for a half second and it was over. This just goes to further prove that girls equal DRAMA.

And after we gave them shots...we left all three of them with my poor niece to baby sit for the night. At least we gave them Tylenol before we left.

p.s. We had such a fun night out. Tried out a new restaurant, went miniature golfing and ended the night watching the fireworks at the state fair on the way home. I could get used to this Friday nights off thing.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

First Day of School!

Monday we took the girls to their preschool open house. Aside from Kenna being upset that her classroom wasn't the right color (OH TRAGEDY!) it was a big success. The teachers seemed very capable, the staff was nice and the school is new and clean.

School starts today. They were so excited yesterday they could hardly keep still. All afternoon they were bombarding me with questions about school, mostly consisting of stuff like:

"Mom, when do I go to school again?"
"If I go to sleep right now can I go to school when I wake up?"
"Why can't I go to school right now?"
"Why can't I go to school every day?"

I'm excited for them too...but this is one of the days it REALLY sucks (more than normal) to be a working mom. I won't be there to send them off this morning. And that kind of breaks my heart a little. I want to be there to get them all dressed up and do their hair and cry as I wave from the doorway and all the other silly sappy stuff that moms are supposed to do on the first day of school.

Not that Matt isn't completely capable...(minus the hair part, although I did remind him to brush it before I left this morning). And maybe they won't even care that I wasn't there this morning.

But my babies are growing up...

And it makes me sad...

Because I feel like I'm missing a lot if it...

I just hope that someday they can understand why we've had to do things the way we do and how hard we've tried to make their childhood the best experience we can.

And...that I can take advantage of all the moments that we DO have together. They are over way too soon.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008


We got some great news today...

They are going to move ahead with my sister-in-law's kidney transplant!

She has been waiting so long and has worked so hard accomplish all the things they told her she had to be able to do before they would do the surgery.

She had to learn to walk and talk again after two strokes almost took her from us a couple of years ago. If you had seen her then and could see her now, you would not believe the amazing progress she has made.

And now, it looks like they are going to give her a transplant date in a couple of weeks.

All I can think of to say is...WAHOO!!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Cinema in the Park

Well, the night out at the movies was a big hit. The kids all had a great time...

although you might not guess that about Liam from the picture...

It was such a nice evening. The weather even cooperated.
We had a big blanket, plenty of popcorn and enough excitement about the whole
thing that the kids actually stayed up for the whole movie.
(Quite the accomplishment considering it didn't end until about 11:15
and they normally go to bed at 7:30.)

We're up for some more adventures.
Thanks to everybody for their suggestions. We're going to be trying out
some of them soon. If anyone wants to come along or has something planned
we'd love the company!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Any ideas?

I have a confession to make.

You see, it's not like I started out with this in mind. I just turned around one day and there it was, staring me in the face.

I am a supremely boring mom.

We don't get out much (or you know, EVER). But I have a lot of (mostly) good excuses - Matt isn't home in the evening, I'm not home during the day, I'm pooped by the time I get home from work, housework needs to be done, the baby is too little young, blah, blah, blah.

But I see so many other moms doing this stuff and how fast my little ones are growing up and I think that those excuses won't mean SQUAT in 10 years when I finally make the time, but my kids no longer want to hang out with me.

So I'm turning over a new leaf. Starting with taking them to the movie in the park tonight - by myself, and WAY past bedtime (my rules are already flying out the window!).

But after that I need IDEAS. See, I'm not a very creative person, I don't know where all the cool hang outs are like splash parks and museums and farms and stuff.

So I'm begging...I know you guys all do amazing and fun things with your kids all the time. So fess up. Share your ideas for fun family outings - whether you're close-by or not.

I need all the help I can get!