Friday, August 29, 2008

Seth's Day w/ Art & Reen

Pics from Seth's fun day with Art & Reen. As you can tell...besides going to preschool open house and meeting his teacher....their day also included: the park, Burger King, swimming and lots of pics w/ the cool BLUE rental car! Seth was pretty excited about the blue car...he wants one!

Thanks Art & Reen...you blessed us and OUR child.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Back to Michigan

Our quick trip to Michigan went really well. We got there...found out it was move-in weekend for thousands of undergrads...so we got really thrown off from our normal route...that vaguely looked familiar w/ now blooming trees and w/out snow on the ground...that was now blocked off due to kids moving into dorms. We met up with Megan (after she walked half way around the hospital (it's like 10 blocks wide) to find us!) We ate lunch at THE place to eat in Ann Arbor....Zingermans Deli...all you Michiganders should be proud.

Then...we went to the study group and had a really great talk with the 12 2nd year med students. Their questions were great...and at times I didn't feel as those our answers were adequate...but we tried. We covered lots of topics...and they seemed very appreciative...well worth our time.

It was great to see Megan and her diamond ring (Woo Hoo Megan!) and catch up a little with her. We hopped back in the car and drove back...to have dinner with mom, dad, Seth and Art & Reen.

Yep...our nannies from NC came for a visit...just in time to spend the day with Seth...how awesome did that all work out. He had an amazing day with them...and will post pictures of his adventures once I get files from Reen! Once again...Art & Reen...you came to the rescue...THANKS!

Overall...it was a good day...mostly...just emotionally draining! We didn't go into the hospital...or see much of where we were...but still memories came back that you forgot...memories of living in a foreign city for 2 months. The most vivid memories were of the drives...
--Andy following the ambulance in pouring down rain...that first night when he had NO idea where he was going.
--The multiple drives that occurred in the snow...really bad snow
--The drives there...so anxious to see Kate again after a break at home
--The drives back home...so anxious to see Seth...but so scared to leave Kate there.
--The drives w/ Seth...stopping 15 times to go to the bathroom
--The drive there near Christmas...I stopped at Cracker Barrel and bought the cutest little Christmas outfit for her...she never got to wear it!
--That final drive home...YUCK!

But too...we were able to relive some great memories of Kate...and our time there...and to see Megan again...a definite blessing from our Ann Arbor experience. Thanks Megan...for allowing us to share some of our journey with you and your classmates.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Stuff

Tonight I went to the parent meeting for Seth's upcoming preschool year! Get this...there are 11 boys in his class! Whew...that is sure to toughen him up! His teacher was so cute...she said I have 8 year old twin boys, so I am used to noise...but still...WOW! I'm sure he'll have a great year as a Marvelous Monkey! School starts next Wednesday.


This Wednesday...Andy and I are headed back to Michigan...to Ann Arbor in fact. If you remember, Kate was paired w/ this awesome young lady named Megan who was in med school. She would come and play with Kate...entertain her...walk her...whatever...especially when I needed/wanted to get away. She was so good to Kate...and we have a special bond w/ Megan as she was with us when Kate died.

Well...months ago, she asked us if we would be willing to come and speak to a group of med students...specifically about being parents of a heart kid/critically ill child. So...Wednesday, we are headed back there. We are excited to see Megan, but still a little nervous about going back THERE. I'll be sure to fill you all in.
Love to all...what to do, with no Olympics on? Guess I'll have to get to my list!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Upward Bound

Today was Seth's first soccer game with Upward...and it was crazy hot at 10am. It was pretty cute...the kids running in a giant glob trying to get the ball. They did a great job of building up the kids and Seth really enjoyed it. It is quite the production...with all the different ages playing all morning...with national anthems...team flags...concessions! Wow...we've made it to the big time!




Kicking the ball in...after it went out of bounds




I just love the determination on his face





Getting the white sticker after the game from Coach Matt...today he got the "Christlikeness" sticker...yeah for Seth for being like Jesus




Seth's buddy Daniel from preschool...he was on the opposing team today!


The rest of the day was fun too...we went to see Kung Fu Panda at the $1 theatre and hit McDonald's for dinner...why do we let him pick? Plus...playing in the sprinkler with friends and swimming w/ Nana while Andy and I did Kate's Kart at Parkview! Whew....busy fun day!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

5 more months

So I am working on an online storybook of all of Kate's hospital pictures. I didn't want to "scrap" them...but at the same time wanted to keep those pictures...and some of the memories alive. We did meet a lot of amazing people...had a lot of amazing visits and did have some amazing times with Kate...even hospitalized. The hardest part is that you can see her deterioration...and how she just slowly...progressively begins to look worse from July-January.

But...today I realized that it's been a year since that awful day...that day her heart stopped for 20 minutes within seconds of getting back to St. V via a helicopter ride. Wow...can I still vividly remember hearing those words...being all alone in Indy...freaking out because I had no idea she was in that bad of shape...I guess no one did. I remember the chaplain immediately praying for Kate...and then finally...hearing those words that it was beating...she was alive!

But...as I look back I am so thankful that God gave us 5 more months...5 more months of wonderful memories (Halloween, to be exact) and He gave us the chance to say goodbye to Kate. I can't even imagine had we lost her that day...without a clue...without knowing....without Andy by my side. That is one thing I am so grateful for...the timing. We weren't ready that day (not that we were in January)...but..thank you God...thank you for giving us 5 more amazing months.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Blessed Visits


So...today I got to meet Amber (and Gracie, Emma & Baby D). Seth and I had a very enjoyable afternoon...just talking...just playing...just listening. In fact Seth keeps asking when we can come back (Amber...you'll wish you never met us!)

The one thing I saw today...just a genuine realness...she is truly God's servant...doing what He called her to do....the good and the bad...the easy and the hard. Amber...God's love is just shining all through you. Please keep their family in your prayers...as the road the next few months is filled with uncertainty with a child they foster and Gracie's upcoming surgery...pray for peace for them...peace in the midst of their "madness."
Then...our pastor came over for a visit today. It's weird...we got to know him so well in January...as he was there for us EVERY step we took with our Earthly goodbyes to Kate. And then...life goes on...he has TONS of other sheep to tend and we find ourselves missing him. It was great today...to just chat...to tell him about the amazing story of Kate's Kart...to hear his ever comforting prayer for us. It was yet another blessing to us...Thank you Pastor Chuck for finding time for us...amidst your crazy schedule this week.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Busy Day for Boys

What a busy day for my little social boy! We counted at bedtime tonight...and throughout the day...he played with 9 other kids!

Baby Jaden was with all us day
Neighbors Chas & Marybeth came to play on the swingset this morning
Neighbors Ethan, Molly & Baby Jack joined in at the party in the backyard
Then...picnic lunch at the park w/ Mya & Boy Jayden (he thinks it's pretty funny that he knows two Jadens/Jaydens...a boy and girl)
And finally...swingset, soccer & sandbox with Sarah...who was visiting her grandma (our neighbor)

That's just crazy...but I am so glad that he has all these other kids to be with. During Kate's life...I felt like he was constantly stuck with adults or we were quarantined at home...but now...the neighborhood is filling with kids and it's a great thing! Should make for one tired little guy tonight.

Funny story...we were working on his memory verse for Upward Soccer...it starts "You know about Jesus of Nazareth" Well...Andy said..."Do you know about Jesus of Nazareth?" Where upon Seth shakes his hands and says: "No no...that's a different kind of Jesus!" Hmmmm...made us laugh...Too cute!

So...in an effort to keep up w/ my socialite son...I get to meet a new friend tomorrow! I'm pretty excited as Amber is an amazing momma...from what I've read on her blog! Yeah...we met on blogworld...and found out we live in the same town! Listen to this: she (and her amazing husband) have 3 kids...adopted a little girl w/ Congenital Heart Defect and have 2 foster children..Yeah that's 3 2 year olds...and she home schools! I am just so excited to meet her...give her a big hug and cheer her on in her amazing journey. Little Gracie is having her 2nd open heart surgery at St. Vincent this fall (her first was before they adopted her)...so I have to fill her in on all the great staff (Melissa...here comes a cutie for you to spoil) ..and maybe provide a little comfort in this agonizing time before surgery...and just chat! She is so fun to talk to..and our 1 1/2 hour phone call flew by last week! Should be a fun afternoon.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Weekend Update...again

Wow..has it been 5 days since my last entry...goodness time just keeps flying by!



Friday...it was our monthly scrapping night! Woo hoo! I was so excited, I even took Seth there early and got all my stuff unloaded and set up before Andy got home. We had it at the pottery store and it was crazy insane. I tell you these 5 ladies that were there are super talented scrappers...in fact Cindy used to manage a scrapbook store...so she was basically her own walking store...if it wasn't there that night...you didn't need it! And can I tell you how excited I was about the 10 extra Cricut cartridges that they had...INSANE! I was a Cricut fool...I think everypage has something cut out. It was so much fun...ended way too early and I can't wait for next month. And...I am only like 3 pages away from being done with Kate's...which means I can get started on catching up on 4 years of Seth and vacations. I've got the fever now.
We pretty much took over the whole studio...thanks Jenny for being a great hostess!


Saturday...our handyman friend Dalen came over and he and Andy laid laminate in our dining room all day. It looks really really nice...they did an incredible job. Honestly, I don't know what we were thinking putting the new carpet in the dining room...hardwood makes so much more sense...but still...why the cat couldn't have told us this BEFORE we made that decision. Regardless...we're both very pleased with it...and after we add an area rug to our Christmas list...I think it will be perfect. So this better end of saga of the cat and the carpet!

Today...was pretty much a day of rest...just like it was designed. Church was a little tense today as something happened to a man and they had to call the EMS to come and get him during the service...we don't know much details...but lift up a quick prayer for Dan. And...we switched up the Sunday School classes as we are doing a 7 week purity unit. I ended up with the 11-12th grade girls and really enjoyed our hour this morning. They were a amazing group of young women...I'm excited about the next few weeks.

We did finish the threshold of the floor...but otherwise just played, rode bikes, napped (2 of the 3 of us...any guesses who has all the energy?) and relaxed. We are working on something new with Seth...and it just breaks my heart as it is more evidence that he is just growing up too fast.

He is trying really hard...and doesn't give up when he falls...in fact I think there is a part of him who enjoys the crashing aspect. He is just an amazing little guy and brings us so much joy.


video

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

It's Over

Well...in terms of our life...summer is OVER! Andy went back today with teachers...and he gets undated with kids tomorrow! It's hard to believe. But...we have had a great summer and we have no complaints...besides the obvious that we constantly felt as if we were missing someone.

It's going to be a new year for Andy...a couple of his long-term teaching friends retired...new ones have come in (well, some...they didn't replace them all) and they are changing to a block schedule. It's probably going to take a while to get used to.

So...now it's me and Seth...and we need to start getting into our routine. He doesn't start school until after Labor Day...so I guess we do have a few weeks before we need to be up and out of the house by 8:15...this getting ready for school in the mornings will be a whole new ballgame....especially for mister lazybones in the morning who won't eat breakfast until like an hour after he wakes up!

And...I have started babysitting a little girl on Tuesdays & Thursdays. Yeah..it is bittersweet...having a little 16 month old girl in the house...but she is a total sweetie and our first day yesterday went great! She's the daughter of Shannon (you know...our Little Give friend...who raised so much money and books for Kate's Kart!)

We went to Lowe's tonight and bought the laminate for our dining room...to replace our NEW carpet! That cat is totally racking up the bills...and speaking of...my allergies are OUT OF CONTROL today. Did you all know I'm allergic to cats...especially ones who destroy stuff! (Just proves how awesome Andy must be for me to live with HIS cat!) Okay..in all honesty...I"m allergic to like everything outside too (trees, weeds, pollen, flowers, grass) and evidently something was in the air today.

I realized today I've spent the last 2 falls sitting in air-conditioned hospitals..I really hope I don't' have to resort back to shots again....UGGHGHGHHGHGHGHH!

Blessings

Sunday, August 10, 2008

There's more than corn...

Wow...the weekend just flew by...kinda sad since it's Andy's last weekend before school!


Friday night we just ordered pizza and stayed in and watched the Olympics. I was pretty impressed with the logistics of the opening ceremony...getting that many people moving in the same direction at the same time. Seth was an absolute angel all evening...using manners...not fussing...it was great! He's been eating like crazy too...must be growing again!
Saturday...the boys headed to Portland to do some more work at Grandma's and I stayed back...ran some errands...worked on some baskets...and




I love sweet corn...and frozen sweet corn in the winter is the next best thing to it fresh... canned corn doesn't even begin to compare. My parents got some free corn from some friends..so I headed over there to take advantage of it (and the help of my parents!) I seriously could eat it every day this time of year. I also froze 20lbs of Michigan blueberries after our trip there a couple weeks ago. So...we're on our way to stocking the freezer for the fall.
Today...we went to church...and since Seth stayed down w/ Grandma...Andy and I had the afternoon to ourselves. I sat down to read the paper and watch some Olympics...only to wake up like 2 hours later! Ahhhh...Sunday afternoon naps...does it get any better? Then Andy and I grilled steaks and ate a wonderful dinner on the porch before picking up Seth.

Well...I'm off to watch more Olympics!




Thursday, August 7, 2008

Home

The boys...and Yogi, BooBoo, Cindy & the Ranger!

Well...the excitement is over...much to the dismay of 3 little boys. We had a great morning, got the picture with all 3 bears & the Ranger...got the camper loaded and even spent a couple hours at the pool. Then...all 3 boys spent the afternoon here at our house...dinner back at Nana & Oompa's...and finally...they parted ways around 7:00. I thought for sure the little one would be wiped out...but not so...can we call it overloaded?


So...thanks so much to Nana & Oompa for taking us camping...it was great fun...for everyone.

This is how I found the boys last night...once I made my way to the tent! I see bribery in the future with this one!

Seth has to be touching something soft when he sucks his thumb...usually it's his blankie..but since we are only letting him have that in bed now...he finds the next best thing when he needs a "thumb" fix in the middle of the day.

Elijah and Seth having fun in the pool.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

More Jellystone Fun

Chalk one up for another fun day with Yogi & BooBoo! It was beautiful weather...and we spent the day at the pool...on the giant water slides...flinging balloons at each other...taking wagon & train rides...and dealing w/ 3 very tired little boys by the end of the day. The pics below tell the whole story....enjoy!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Jellystone Fun

Thanks to wireless Internet...a very temperamental and slow signal...but non-the-less I'm on...some of the time.
We left for Fremont by 9 this morning and were able to check into our campsite. The boys and I explored while Nana & Oompa set up! This is quite the place...with constant activities going on...all kinds of toys/games...and of course...it's a money pit.
Elijah was hot to trot to go to the fishing pond...so Seth, Lucas and I headed to play miniature golf. We ate lunch and then we all headed to the swimming pool and splash park...we had to take about an hour break for a thunder/lightening sighting...but were back in later that afternoon.

The boys are having a blast...riding bikes...playing with their little airplanes...and just being boys! They are in the camper right now watching a movie (I know...luxury camping)...then off to the tent! We'll see how that goes...and how late they are up. I'll be their tent mate tonight...once they settle down. Good times for little boys!Lucas and Seth w/ Yogi Bear at the Putt Putt

Even without toys...these boys will find a way to have fun! Yep...those are our shoes!


Seth & Lucas....getting all wet!

3 cousins...having so much fun!

Lucas & Seth...coming down the water slide

Monday, August 4, 2008

Camping...take 3!

Seth started Upward Soccer tonight...we are happy with the program so far. His coach appears to be a great dad...and there are just 6 kids on the team, so they got lots of individual attention. The whole approach was very encouraging and uplifting!

Seth and I are going camping tomorrow...with Nana, Oompa and Elijah and Lucas. We are headed up north to Jellystone Campground...that has a waterpark and miniature golf...I'm sure the boys will have a wonderful time. I'm looking forward to just getting away for a few days...I know I've only been home a week...but it's been a crazy week.

Andy is staying back and heading into school this week. He really hasn't had the time the past 2 years to really get his classroom set up (last year, we were still in the hospital w/ Kate). So...a couple days of working at school...plus the pool...he'll be a busy boy.

Not much else....oh yeah...except that we are being treated to a trip to Disney World in October! YEAH! It was always Andy's dad's wish to take Seth to Disney....Andy's mom is honoring that wish and taking the 3 of us over fall break! She's making all the plans...all we have to show up! How cool is that? Although Seth probably won't remember most of it...he's at the age where the characters are still magical! I can't wait to see his face. I haven't been since high school...and have never stayed overnight at the resort! What a treat! We are all very excited!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

6th Anniversary!

Today marks 6 wonderful years with Andy...6 years packed full of way too much! But...I am so grateful to have him...and to have taken this part of my life journey with him!

We've had a great day....started the day with church...then lunch and Sunday newspaper reading on the back porch. We then dropped off Seth at my parents house...and we went to see Mamma Mia! I know...how awesome is Andy to go see that when Journey to the Center of the Earth ...in 3D is out! It was cute...but we both agreed it didn't compare to the stage version we saw last fall...but still, a fun summer movie.

Then...we ran a few errands...re-loaded the book Kart at Lutheran...and checked out some laminate flooring (you guessed it...the dining room carpet is officially trashed!). Then...we went to one of our favorite restaurants for dinner...and topped it off with a scoop of ice cream.

Now...Andy is catching a few minutes of the Colts game before we go lock up the pool for the night.

Happy Anniversary sweetie...can't wait to see what the future holds! I love you!