Quote of the Blog

Saturday, May 20, 2017

So Much Drama

A few months ago Sophie decided to join the drama club and with a bit of encouragement from mom and dad decided to try out for a speaking/singing part rather than serve solely on the crew. She wanted to be one of the Tweedles and got the part of Tweedledee Dum and was paired with her friend from church and class, Ainsley, as Tweedledee Dee.

After months of practices and preparation, Mrs. Lang presented Alice in Wonderland, Jr.! We were happy to have Oma and Opa join us as well as classmates and neighborhood friends. They all did great and Sophie was truly a wonderful actress with lots of fun expression and good volume and when she wasn't in the spotlight, she didn't stop acting. She sang well too! So proud of her. You could tell she was having a lot of fun!

Lots of compliments and excitement for her and her fellow classmates.

Ms. Morrison, Mrs. Curry and cast members

Sophie & Mrs. Lang

Mother's Day

The Friday night before Mother's Day was Father/Son's Camp Out a.k.a Priesthood Commemoration. Neal and Rhys headed out after school let out to get BBQ and set up camp which wasn't hard since they were sleeping in hammocks. They enjoyed playing with friends and discovered a tarantula which Rhys claims he touched before he figured out that it was a tarantula and not just dirt and forest debris. It was held by some boys. They had brownies and ice cream for dinner and slept uncomfortably through the night. French toast and breakfast burritos were served they packed up and instead of going taking a little father/son trip to swim in a local lake, Rhys said he was good and was ready for home.

Sophie and I shopped for duct tape so she could create more things from trash and made one of Sophie's favorites, taco soup, for dinner. We finally watched the 2nd Harry Potter movie after finishing the book some time ago. This while eating ice cream.  Saturday we took off for an 8 mile bike ride to 3 local parks and returned home to watch the movie all over again. We finished our fun by crating slime but it turned out to be a complete fail, leaving us with a rigid jello type substance.
Not gooey or slimy "slime"

Neal and I went on a date to see Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and had a great time.

On Mother's Day I enjoyed lemon poppy seed pancakes and gifts from my favorite people. Rhys gave me a word art collage of kind words describing me and built the word LOVE with Legos accompanied by a myriad of Lego mini figures to salute me. Sophie had her mecanical bird toys sing a song for me. They gave me a T-shirt that I bought for myself earlier in the week  :-)  and Neal was brilliant and got me a card and chocolate.Church was great with the bishopric providing the sisters with roses and a buffet of sweets. We watched Disney's Moana for the first time after church. Great day!

Monday, May 8, 2017

Barksdale Air Show

In all my years in CA I never attended an Air Show. Never in TX either. Yep, this past weekend we had to travel all the way to Louisiana to see "Doc", the only other B-29 besides Opa's "Fifi".  Doc sure was shiny. Great to see all the planes, let the kids climb aboard military helicopters and cargo planes, tour the cockpit, and watch the crazy moves during the air show. Had lunch under the shade of airplane wings. Thanks to Opa for the photos!

The highlight for Rhys

That dot in the window is Sophie

Friday, May 5, 2017

Emily's Place Delivery

Our family issued a St. Patrick's Day challenge to the men in our area to show how lucky they felt to have the women they do have in their lives by helping out some women that were down on their luck.  Families donated feminine hygiene products and other items on the immediate needs list for Emily's Place a local transitional housing program for families that are rebuilding their lives after experiencing domestic violence.

Emily's place is not a shelter but housing and a program to help families get back on their feet, get counseling and jobs, and practice independence while building their credit. They help up to 8 families at a time.

We were happy to learn of this organization so close to home and do a little something to help resources go to more important needs and growth. Thanks for all who participated.

Alma 37:6 Now ye may suppose that this is foolishness in me; but behold I say unto you, that by small and simple things are great things brought to pass; and small means in many instances doth confound the wise.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Sophie is Falcon of the Month!

Honestly, Sophie totally owned this year! She blossomed academically and emotionally!

Friday, April 21, 2017

Eye Surgery

Even though patching did not work, Rhys sure looked like the coolest pirate ever for a time.

After no success with 2 attempts of months of eye patching, and visiting two different eye doctors, Rhys underwent bilateral strabismis outpatient surgery on his eyes Wednesday. Both Neal and I were there to help him come out of anesthesia without rubbing his face. He was quite uncomfortable and agitated at first and at periods throughout the day but we worked on staying calm for longer and longer periods. Pretty hard on a mama to see her son crying pink tears.

The next day he opened his eyes a lot more and his anxiety quickly lessened as he realized his eyes were feeling better and the drops and ointments really were benefiting him instead of hurting him. We took it easy by trying things slowly throughout the morning--reading a few pages to see how it went, going for a short walk outside to see if the light still bugged him, etc. By early afternoon he was much more himself and we went to a follow up appointment with the surgeon. She measured and found that it all looked good and Rhys was quite happy with how things were progressing.

He went back to school for a trial day today, Friday, with orders for no PE or recess play for a week. I am happy to be only 3 minutes away from my boy. We preemptively had Rhys' teacher discuss the upcoming surgery and the resulting temporary change in appearance (red whites of the eye, crossed-eyed) in hopes to avoid teasing and increase understanding and compassion. But they are second graders so we'll see.

Neal has had his boss in town and has been having dinners with him and Neal's been preparing for the PTA's silent auction this week.  We are happy that Saturday is open and he can spend some more time with his son and family.

Thanks for help from Opa, in caring for Rhys while we went to a short school meeting, and for the calls to see how Rhys has been doing from family. We appreciate the love and support.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Fairfield State Park Camping

Thanks to Good Friday, we were able to get two nights of camping in before making our way home to prepare for Easter Sunday. Hiking, swimming, and s'mores.

Tyler using sticks to remove spider webs from our path

Somewhere in there is a very happy man

Pink Evening Primrose was everywhere on our trip there

Made it home safe and sound Saturday afternoon. Sunday, Keri spoke in church on Christ's resurrection during sacrament meeting and we had Oma and Opa over for an early dinner. Thanks to them for some awesome chocolate booty. We finished our Easter by attending a Easter choir performance at one of our local church buildings. Great ending to a great weekend!

Monday, April 10, 2017

Bluebonnet Trail in Ennis, TX

Spontaneously took off to Ennis to see the bluebonnets instead of our annual Eggstravaganza at city hall this year. Glad we did! It was gorgeous! Enjoyed photos, a nature walk, festival, and lunch at the Wildflower Cafe.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Grandma and Grandpa

My dad, Dennis, was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, stage 3 back in the fall when they spotted something odd when going in to remove his gall bladder for a planned surgery. He chose to do naturopathic treatments after the surgical removal of the cancer and then went back and forth with the idea of doing chemo for months, finally doing a 3 month trial of chemo starting at the new year. His most recent scans came back clear of cancer and he has decided to stop chemo and continue with a modified naturopathic treatment for some time. He gets scanned again in 3 months.

In the meantime, my mom, a diabetic we thought would have never made it this far had a serious period of low blood sugar in which my father did not act in her best interest, and she ended up in the hospital with stroke like symptoms (aphasia) but nothing indicating a stroke on the brain scans.  Within a week her speech had return to normal.

It has been kind of crazy. Partially because I am not there to help out given the distance. Partially because, communication is not one of the strengths of my family, and partially because it is hard to determine how to enter the role of child as caregiver without worsening circumstances or relationships. It's a new era but not sure how to navigate it.

I feel it would be best to have plans A, B, and C depending on which parent dies or becomes totally dependent first but they would also have to agree with said plans as they are able to make their own decisions right now. Hmmm.  Been thinking. Not sure where to go next.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Field Trip to The Frontiers of Flight Museum

Neal is a great dad. There is no debating that.
Yesterday he chaperoned Rhys' field trip to The Frontiers of Flight Museum. He really has fun with his kids and helps out in the this way as often as he can. He even splurged on these bad boys for the special day.
 Not far in to his bus ride there, I got this text: "You know that scene in the Grinch where he's all noise noise noise noise... That's my life right now"

He had a good group of 4 kids and got a tour from an 85-year-old WWII veteran, Tad, who was a wealth of knowledge. He even got to mark another Apollo Command Module off his list (that's 3 now). Good times!