Tuesday, October 30, 2007

The Latest

Tyler definitely has H. Pylori. He is now on our different medications for the next 14 days, and missed school again today due to vomiting. Ugh!! Will had a mild reprieve from Jury Duty today. Basically, the judge and lawyers needed to figure a few things out. To add to the excitement, Kayla is now running a fever (over 101 degrees), and has white spots on her throat. She is not happy that this is going to keep her from enjoying the Halloween festivities, and possibly her Cross Country meet on Friday. Honestly, reason #2 is far more upsetting to her. I can't blame her. She has worked very hard to prepare for this.

So far, I am still going to the Orthopoedic Doctor tomorrow, as planned. I only hope there will be some good news to be heard there.

Awe Inspiring

This was put together by a 15 year old girl named Lizzie Palmer. She has a way of showing things, and evoking feelings, that is being appreciated by many. There are over 18,000,000 hits on her YouTube video so far. If you haven't already seen it, enjoy, but be sure to keep your Kleenex nearby.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Happenings....

Overall, we are all so much better. Will still has an achy side (including enlarged liver and spleen), but the doctor does not seem to be terribly concerned. Basically, it is likely that the shingles virus just overwhelmed his system, and everything will return to normal soon. I see the orthopedic doctor on Wednesday for a check-up on my ankle. It would be a huge relief to hear that I don't need to wear the boot anymore, but I can tell that I still have a way to go before the word "cured" might be applied. There is just too much swelling, discoloration, weakness and achy-ness left for me to be convinced that all is well. Hopefully, the doctor will be a little more optimistic than I am. Kayla, Daniel, Justin and Grace seem to be feeling quite well. Unfortunately, Tyler never did overcome the vomiting thing from last week. The doctor ended up ordering some blood work, which revealed a positive result for H. Pylori. We are going to the GI specialist tomorrow morning. This would explain the nausea and vomiting, but does not give us a good answer for the dizziness, vertigo, faintness, blurred vision, etc. The pediatrician is consulting with Tyler's psychiatrist to find out if any of his meds could cause these symptoms. It is unlikely, considering Tyler has taken the same meds for years, or at least many months, but we'll see. I only hope they figure it out soon. I am growing rather weary, and I'm sure Tyler is too, of seeing my son feel crappy everyday.

On the fire front, we are doing OK so far. There is still one fire (out of 35) that is a small threat to our community. It's not so much that it is likely to burn us down, but the smoke is overpowering. The entire school district closed on Thursday and Friday. Even though the kids were able to return to class today, they were still unable to participate in any outdoor activities. The district hopes to left those restrictions by Wednesday. I guess we'll see, huh?

Will has been on Jury Duty since this past Thursday. It's kind of nice that he gets to sleep in a little (usually hist first class starts at 7:10am), but he also gets home quite a bit later than usual. Of course, he does get paid for Jury Duty. I guess this is what most families deal with when the parents work 9am-5pm. We are truly spoiled!! He expects to serve throughout the week. Hopefully, things will be wrapped up by Friday.

So, that pretty much covers things for our family for the past, and next, few days. If anything comes up that is especially exciting, I'll be sure to let you know.

Until then....

~Blaine

My Short Journey Into Politics



...and after seeing him on the Ellen Degeneres Show today, I can testify to the fact that he can dance a little bit too. Go Barack!!!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Oh...Good Gravy!!!

I just got a call from the school nurse at the Middle School my big kids go to. It seems Tyler has some kind of stomach bug going on. At least that's what I hope it is. He is also experiencing dizziness and feels faint. I put a call in to the doctor. Now he gets to hang out with a bowl while I wait for the phone to ring. Too much fun!!

A World Aflame

I was just catching a quick news update on my way back from taking my big kids to school (about 8:00 am). In case you haven't heard, much of Southern California is on fire today. A number of homes have been burned, thousands of people have been evacuated, and there have been multiple injuries and two deaths. So far the fires are to the North, South and West of us. While we are praying for them to be put out ASAP, we are praying even harder that our area stays fire free. Just like most of So Cal, we live in a high risk area. We experienced evacuation and fire damage at our old house four years ago. It was very scary, and we have no desire to repeat the experience.

Anyway, back to the newscast I was listening to. The reporter dutifully covered the latest statistics on each of the fires. She told us that SEVEN counties in California have been declared disaster areas so far. She then moved on to traffic. Traffic on a Monday in Southern California can be rather dicey under the best of circumstances. Throw in some Santa Ana winds, and a whole lot of smoke, and things get downright ugly. After reporting at least 6 different accidents along one 50 mile stretch of freeway, and covering the freeways that were closed due to fire, she moved on to the weather report.

The reporter, with her lovely English accent, told us that we are in for EXTREMELY low humidity, increased winds and soaring temperatures for the next two days. In fact, we will be under a "Red Flag Warning" for at least the next two days. For those of you that aren't familiar with that term, it is sort of like the Department of Homeland Security changing the "level" to RED. In terms of fire danger, it doesn't get any worse than that. Next, however, came my favorite part. It was time for the newscaster to talk about our current, local conditions. Here is the report, word for word.

"It is 68 degrees in the town just North of us, and 62 degrees in 5McCKidTown. Winds are gusting up to 80 mph, and there are (and I quote) hazy, sunny, debris laden, sandy skies."

Even the professional, stiff upper lip, English lady could not help but comment, "Now that's a new one!!"

Friday, October 19, 2007

God's Plan

So, I'm home today with just Grace and Justin. In some ways, it is a sweet reminder of what would have been "if only". You see, Justin is the only baby that Will and I had together, and we adopted Grace a year and a half ago. I had the chance to spend a few months with my little ones after Daniel returned to public school last December, but for some reason I was struck with a surprising notion today. The elementary schools in our district had a "Staff Development Day", which meant my Middle Schoolers still had to face the school day. But Justin got to hang out with Grace and I. As I was enjoying their silly play together, and sometimes nipping a screaming fit in the bud, I realized that this is what our family would have been if Will and I had never been married, had children and been widowed before "us". What a different life that would have been. However, I can't imagine my life going any other way than it did, and I know Will feels the same. Those three big kids are treasures in our hearts, and bless our family everyday. In truth, Will and I wouldn't be the spouses or parents we are now, without those experiences. This family did not come together without pain, but we are abundantly blessed for working our way through it. I'm so glad God had a plan that was so much bigger than we could fathom, imagine or guess.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

A Quick Update (well maybe not so much)

All of the kids have been back in school for a week now. So far, there are no signs of chicken pox on Tyler or Grace. (I did knock on wood while typing this) Tyler gave us a brief scare, but it turned out to be some 24 hour stomach bug. That is so much better than what he could have faced. Everyone that came down with "the plague" had nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and fever for days. Not to mention the pox from head to toe with almost unbearable itching. I wish I had know in advance that this was coming; I would have bought stock in Benadryl and Caladryl!! Kayla was the true over-achiever though. She had pox down her throat, all over her scalp, on the palms of her hands, on her eyeball and a couple other places that shall remain unmentioned for privacy sake. After a full week of continuing to get new sores, the doctor finally called in some anti-viral medication for her. It truly worked miracles. She was a whole new person within 24 hours.

We're still waiting to hear back from the doctor about Will's ultrasound. He had it done on Saturday, and it takes 3-5 business days to get the report. You can bet I'll be in the phone to the doctor's office tomorrow. This waiting thing is getting rather old. On that note, I came home to a message from my orthopedic doctor's office yesterday. For some unknown reason, they need to push my follow up appointment back by a week. In the mean time, I get to wear my clunky boot for a while longer. At least I don't have any special occasions coming up. Something tells me that this boot would not make any kind of fashion statement that I might be trying for. 8^) Oh, I just remembered that I need to make a follow-up appointment with my oncologist about my breast MRI too. I need to get on that ASAP so I can mark that wait off "the list".

We're hosting a pool party for my younger sister's birthday on Saturday. My brother is bringing his girlfriend, and this is the first time I will get to meet her in person. I'm excited!! This is the first girlfriend he has ever brought over (maybe the first he has ever had). He is a pretty major computer geek, so it is WAY fun to see and hear him being all goofy and lovey. I am SOOOOO happy for them! It will be nice to have the whole family together too. It just doesn't happen often enough these days.

Well, other than the Middle School drama that comes with having a child in 6th grade, 7th grade and 8th grade, that is about it for us this week. My kindergartner, Justin, is L-O-V-I-N-G Kindergarten. His teacher is as sweet as can be. In fact, Kayla even went in with Justin on a day off (just for the Middle Schools) recently, and volunteered for 3 1/2 hours. I spent MANY hours in my older kids' kindergarten classrooms, so it totally made my day to see her "pay it forward" like that. I guess middle school kids might not be so bad after all. 8^)

I guess I haven't mentioned Grace in this post, and since she's the only one I left out, that just doesn't seem right. Overall, she is doing great. She is growing like crazy, and talks more and more everyday. Someday we might actually understand more of what she is trying to say. In the mean time, SHE is quite certain of the message she is trying to get across. She was rather sad to see all of her older siblings head off to school this year, but has since become quite content with dominating my mornings. Oh, how I love to pick Justin up at lunch time each day. Don't get me wrong. I do enjoy hanging out with Grace, but Justin is still close enough to being her peer to appreciate most of her 2 year old goofiness.

So, there you have it; our life in a nutshell. I hope all is well with you and yours.

Possibly My New Crack (w/ small edit)

You'll need a few minutes. Go to this link, and then watch one, after another, after another, etc. I swear I almost peed my pants from laughing so hard. I will be going back often. Enjoy!!

They Said What?

Edit: No people!! I did not do crack, or any other drug for that matter, before this post. Puh-lease!!!

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

I've Been Tagged!!

I have been tagged by Valerie (my LONG TIME friend), so here it goes:

4 Things About Me:

Jobs I've had:
1. Payless Drugstore Cashier
2. Citicorp Credit Card Telephone Customer Service Representative
3. Telemarketer (hated EVERY moment)
4. Mom

Places I have lived: (Where haven't I lived?)
1. Skokie, IL
2. Littleton, CO
3. San Bernardino, CA
4. Winchester, CA

Food I love:
1. Chicago Style Pizza
2. Chinese Food
3. Fettuccine Alfredo
4. Godiva Champagne Truffles

Websites I visit:
1. Bloglines
2. People
3. My Family.com
4. TMZ (My guilty pleasure!!)

Places I'd rather be:
1. Alaska (only in the summer)
2. Ethiopia (to learn more about Grace's culture)
3. France, Switzerland, etc. (just so I can practice my French)
4. Australia, New Zealand (what can I say? I want to see the world.)

Movies I love:
1. The Notebook
2. Sweet November
3. Corrina, Corrina
4. Return To Me

TV shows I watch:
1. House
2. American Idol
3. Grey's Anatomy
4. Extreme Makeover: Home Edition

People I tag:
1. Perri
2. Christy
3. Amanda
4. Julie

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

It's That Time again


Last year at this time, my blog went pink. It was Breast Cancer Awareness Month, of course. I have hardly had the energy to post recently, let alone worry about what color the posts are. My husband, however, is far more on top of things than I. He showed up from the grocery store tonight with a beautiful, pink bouquet, with a tag that says "Passionately Pink for the Cure....Because Everyone Deserves a Lifetime!!"

As I wait for my own follow-up appointment, and MRI results, please think of all the women you know that have, or might have, breast cancer. I love you all!!