Monday, December 31, 2007

101.7...........

..............was Tom's temperature this morning when we left for his mom's funeral. As I type this, he is wrapped in a blanket and is watching a Planet of the Apes marathon on TV.

Happy. New. Year. 2008 has GOT to be better than 2007 has been. Ugh!

The funeral went well. Fr. Gary did a super job at her funeral mass - the soloist was amazing - and it was nice to see so many of Kay's friends. Marc wasn't able to make it due to the weather/road conditions. He called and spoke with Tom tonight though - he felt really bad about missing the service. Brendan had a tough time getting through it. It broke my heart to see him so upset. Katie was awful during the funeral - she did NOT want to sit down. You'd think the child had never attended church before, she was that bad.

We are in the process of cleaning out her house. 34 years in the same home......so many memories for Tom and Steph..........so many things to move, pack, purge, etc. It has not been easy. We are making progress though. I think we are supposed to hear back from the realtor tomorrow regarding the sale price, etc. This whole situation is just really difficult for all of us.

As usual, I am trying to find the bright side to all of this. So, here it goes:
1. The kids had a nice Christmas in spite of all of the stress this year.
2. Katie got her Rose Petal Cottage and her "dress-up baby" as requested.
3. Brendan got a Nintendo DS and two games (Pokemon and a zoo game) as requested.
4. I got Tom a series of 5 golf lessons for the spring. From the kids, I got him a really cool gift card to Subway (his fave healthy-lunch spot) - the card was personalized with the kids' picture on it.
5. We had a nice prime rib dinner for Christmas. Tom zipped in to eat, then ran back to the hospital to be with his mother. But, at least we were able to enjoy a few minutes of the holiday together.
6. Even with everything that happened this past year, I still feel incredibly blessed.

I am amazed at the number of people who have contacted us with offers of meals, babysitting, moving furniture, etc. I am so touched at the generosity shown to us. We have some really, really wonderful friends.

I just wanted to check in really quickly to update and wish you all a VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR! Blessings to you all!!!

Love,
Marti

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Rough Day

Kay and my grandmother both passed away early this morning - within just a few hours of one another.

Kay's funeral is Monday at 10:30 am at ST. Mary's Cathedral here in Cheyenne.

Thanks for the prayers and support. We so much appreciate it.

Love,
Marti

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas . . . and reunions, of sorts

First of all, Merry Christmas! I hope you all have a wonderful day filled with family, joy, peace, and love.

Tom just got a phone call from the hospital and his mother is fading quickly. It will be any moment. Brendan said that he is glad she got one last Christmas on earth because that is what he prayed and asked God for. But it also looks like she will get to share this Christmas with her sweetheart who is waiting for her in heaven. It will be a loving reunion, I am sure. I know Marvin will give her three things right away: a hug, a kiss, and a hard time ;o) . He loved teasing her and I know how much she has missed him. I am praying that Jesus takes her hand and leads her home to her husband.

To top it all off, my mother called and my grandmother is also expected to pass away at any moment. She's been struggling with Alzheimers Disease for ten years now and we've been expecting her to decline soon - but just not this week. I just can't believe this is all happening to our little family on Christmas Day.

We are trying to make the day special for the two little ones, but they obviously notice that their Daddy isn't home (and they KNOW where he is). We'll have to try hard to make New Year's Eve special, I guess. They are, however, upstairs laughing and playing with their gifts. They both received exactly what they wanted from Santa (Brendan wanted a Nintendo DS with games, etc. - and Katie wanted Rose Petal Cottage and a dress-up baby).

Blessings to you all!

Love,
Marti

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Life is full of surprises

Tom's mother had a slight improvement the other day. The doctors are amazed and say they aren't quite sure how this happened. She is still in critical condition, but she is conscious now and able to talk a little. She is so very tired though. So, the latest from the doctors is this:

She will stay in the hospital for now. IF (big IF) she ever gets well enough to leave the hospital, she will have to go to the hospice center for the remainder of her life. Hospice is only for people with less than six months to live, so it is obvious what her prognosis is. The hospice center will provide comfort measures for her, but no life-saving heroics like they do in a hospital. It is a beautiful facility and very close to our home. Tom and Steph are handling everything quite well right now. It is still hard, but they are prepared for whatever happens. We all hate seeing her suffer so much. She isn't in pain, but she is unable to breathe well, she can't cough, she is so congested, and her heart isn't functioning properly.

The most difficult conversation Tom and I ever had was on Thursday afternoon when we had to sit Brendan down and explain to him that his Grandma was not going to be with us much longer. He didn't understand at first. It was so hard to tell him. It broke our hearts. Normally parenting comes easy for me, but that moment was anything but easy. It is funny that we (a collective "we" - as in "parents") are so focused on teaching our children about life that we fail to teach them about death. It is a taboo subject. We don't want to scare them. We don't want them to worry or to think about death and dying. And then a situation like this one comes up and we are forced to do it. It isn't a casual conversation at that point. It is a planned - even contrived - speech we give them and expect them to be able to take it all in and understand it immediately. The pathetic part about this for Tom and me is that we just went through this 3 years ago when his Dad died. We knew his mother was in poor health and we'd have to have this discussion with Brendan again soon, but we have neglected it. We knew how upset he was over losing his Grandpa and we didn't want him to worry about his Grandma - so we pretended everything was fine and it wasn't. I feel as if I've failed him in a major way.

Of course, Katie has no idea what is going on at this point. We did take her to see her Gra-Gra yesterday. She knows Grandma is sick, but has no concept of death. We let the kids take their Christmas gifts to Grandma and we took up a small Christmas tree for her. I made a couple of clear glass ornaments with the kids' pictures inside of them (print the picture on a transparency, cut it in a circle the same size as the ornament but leave a tab at the top of the photo, roll up the picture and slip in through the hole with the tab-side up, release the transparency and the tab fits into the ornament's opening and holds it in place). She loved it. We let her open her gifts and we even snuck some divinity (her favorite) in, too.

I'll update again if anything changes. I'll also post some pictures of the kids soon. I have yet to mail my Christmas cards. They will be coming out after the New Year, I'm sure. Too much going on for me to get them ready, re-write my Christmas letter (I had 2 computer crashes and lost my original one), and go to the PO for stamps. Please know that we are thinking of you all!

Love,
Marti

Friday, December 21, 2007

Prayers appreciated..............

Tom's mother is in extremely critical condition and isn't expected to make it through the day. Please pray for Tom and Stephanie today. It is going to be a really rough day for them - and a difficult Christmas. I'll update when I know more.

Blessings-
Marti

Monday, December 17, 2007

Stuff has hit the fan........

The past few weeks have been...........interesting. The "cold" Katie caught after her afternoon in the dr. office turned into RSV within a few days. She has been very sick. I am so thankful that Sean is here - he has been such a help with her while I ran errands. I haven't been able to do much of anything except take care of her needs. She just began feeling a little better this weekend, and Brendan brought home a headcold and he/she/I are all suffering with it. Aaaaaaaaaaaacccccccckkkkkkkk!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Then, Tom's mother was re-admitted to the hospital with fluid in her lungs. She caught it before it turned into pneumonia again, but it's a serious condition nonetheless. This latest episode has forced all of us to realize how fragile her condition is. Uncle Don has been staying up here since the last hospitalization (a month ago) and he is looking so tired. We need to make some changes and set up a schedule for her care. As it looks right now, Tom and Steph will alternate weekends, Uncle Don will take Monday-Tuesday, and I will take Wednesday-Friday. This may change though - things around here seem to do that constantly. Also, I may have to take her dog back in for a while. Her doctor wants her to go back to rehab for her hip because she has regressed so much. She's been in bed for the last month and is now needing her walker again. The dr. feels rehab would help her, but she is resistant to going back there. If she agrees to go, I will be getting the dog-in-law for a while again. This is her 7th episode of fluid/pneumonia in her lungs this year. Tom is going to be speaking to her physician today or tomorrow and will try to get some sort of prognosis, but we know this is going to be a continuing trend and will only get worse rather than better.

I have had my Christmas Cards completed since November, but haven't had a chance to get my Christmas letter copied yet so they are still sitting on my work table in my scrapbook room. They are going to be late probably.

Also, we've had both of our computers crash and I have lost EVERYTHING off of them (pictures from vacation that I hadn't backed up yet, PTO files, contact list for my email, all of my work documents, etc.). Tom got one of them running again last night - he had to blow everything off of it, then re-install all of the programs so at least I can use it now. He is going to try and save some files off of the other one before he re-installs everything on it, but I am not feeling very hopeful about it.

So, to wrap it all up - Christmas cards may be late, we all have colds, computers are giving us fits, Tom's mother is really suffering, and I need a vacation to a tropical beach somewhere - complete with an umbrella-toting drink in my hand.

On the bright side of things: we've completed our Christmas shopping for the kids - took Katie to see Santa for the first time on Saturday - mailed out letters to Santa in the old-fashioned North Pole-bound mailbox at the downtown post office - actually got to visit the new library this weekend - and I think I can get my baking done this week. Remember, now matter how bleak things seem, there is ALWAYS a bright side.

I wish all of you a wonderful Christmas. We are thinking of you and wishing you God's richest blessings.

Love,
Marti

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Recent Pictures

I'll write a catch-up later. Just wanted to post some recent pictures of the kiddos.
Katie's fancy artwork - on her bed! She scribbled all over the sides and everything. Needless to say, I was less than impressed with this one. She was sure tickled with it though.
One of Brendan's Birthday cupcake cakes. I made a Brontosaurus.........
...and a T-Rex. There are little candy rocks in the clumps of "grass". Brendan was very excited with them both.
Brendan and his 9 best friends at his Birthday party. This was taken at the end of the party (at the IKON Center in Cheyenne) - and shortly before Tom and I went home and collapsed from exhaustion. Boy, was that a rough night. They played lazer tag and air hockey. We had forgotten how rowdy 8 year-old boys can be.

Katie helped me make our Thanksgiving pies this year. She brought a pie tin from her play kitchen and wanted some pie in it, too. So, we made a little pumpkin pie for her - and she LOVED IT!!! She was so proud of herself and so excited to see her pie come out of the oven.


Admiring her handiwork.

Snow fun in the backyard. Katie's first experience with "snowball fighting". Brendan made sure he got his licks in first - but she quickly got the hang of it.

Brendan's First Communion - with Father Tom

Not to be outdone, Katie insisted she have her picture taken with Fr. Tom, too. Yes, that IS cake on her face. She didn't give me a chance to clean her face before we took the picture.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

It just keeps getting better and better! NOT!

Well, Katie never did cooperating with the whole "urine sample in a cup" idea. We finally gave up and decided that if she starts having trouble again, I will sterilize her potty chair and dump it into the container to take to the lab. Ugh! She is really going to love me giving out such intimate details of her little life. I'll have to dump the blog before she starts to read! Ha!

And, just because we are on such a great roll these days - she caught a nasty head cold from sitting at the doctor's office all afternoon. She hasn't slept for two nights - which means I haven't slept for two nights. We are both a little crabby ;o) .

I think I need to take some time to count my blessings again.

Have a wonderful holiday filled with peace, love, and family!

Love,
Marti

Thursday, November 15, 2007

A fun afternoon waiting for the dam to burst. . .

Well, not really a dam - more like Katie's bladder. That child can go for hours and hours without having to empty her bladder. Unfortunately, I found this out the hard way.

She has been complaining of pain and discomfort off-and-on since I got her potty trained. Well, it got worse this week so I worried that she had a bladder infection. Trips to the doctor are always fun because they require a one-hour drive to the dr., the appointment, then a one-hour drive home. After checking things out, the Ped also thought she might have a bladder infection and asked if she could get a urine sample from my darling daughter. Well, um, oooookay - we can try. Well, we tried, and tried, and tried some more. I took Katie to the Burger King down the street and pumped her full of sprite - and tried again. Nothing. I let her play with all of the fun toys at the dr. office and then tried again, and again - still nothing. After spending 3 hours and 34 minutes there IN THE OFFICE, I finally gave up and brought everything home so we could try it here. The nurse said to wait until this morning and then we could run it to the lab here in town. Well, it is 9:17 am right now - and Katie has been up since 7:00 sharp - and nothing yet. I wish my bladder was that good. Dang! If I wasn't so frustrated with the child, I'd be impressed. I didn't tell you the least fun part of this experience (as if 3 hrs. and 34 minutes in the dr.'s office wasn't enough) - before each attempt, I had to clean her little girlie bits with this nasty, stinging, pink soap. The nurse warned me that it stung - and I was hoping Katie wouldn't notice that it stung (yes, I really am that stupid and that naive). Well, somehow she caught word of the "stinging" side-effect of the soap (she couldn't have noticed on her own - someone MUST have told her, right?!?!) and it became apparent IMMEDIATELY that it was somewhat uncomfortable for her. Long, long afternoon for us both. I am still exhausted - and we aren't done with this fun yet. I'll let you know how it all goes.

Prayers are appreciated ;o)

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Thanksgiving Blessings

I went scrapbooking at The Treasure Box on Saturday - and I almost have my Christmas cards finished and ready for mailing! Can you believe it?!?! It feels sooooooooooooo good! Anyway, I shared the day with some really fun (and far too-talented) ladies - and was able to spend 5 whole hours getting my Christmas Cards made. I got about 2/3 of the way done with them. That was a major relief for me. Seriously

I really love this time of year. Summer used to be my favorite season, but since I developed such severe allergies, that honor belongs to the fall season. The crisp air - the smell of wood burning in a fireplace - the leaves crunching underfoot. . . I just love it. Fall is also a time of year when people begin focusing more on home, family and blessings. It really is almost as magical as Christmastime.

I have an abundance of wonderful things in my life. First, I have four beautiful children - well, two children and two men - but I gave birth to all of them. And since none of them look anything remotely like me, I can say I think they are absolutely stunning, too. The man I married is both a wonderful husband AND a top-notch Dad. My parents are both still on this earth. I have hobbies and interests that keep me from ever becoming stagnate. I have a strong faith. I have not gone prematurely gray. I live in a great neighborhood which has provided my children with oodles of extra grandparents. We have a faith-filled home. I have beautiful, talented, and amazing friends. We are all relatively healthy. My Tuesday morning Bible Study group is filled with such terrific women. I have an employer who is completely flexible with my schedule so I can concentrate on my family. I could go on for days...

Anyway, stop and take a minute to count all of your "wonderful things" - you won't be sorry! Email or post them here for me to read - I love that!

Hopefully I'll post before next week - but just in case I can't: Have a happy fall and a wonderful Thanksgiving filled with family, friends, great food, and lots of good sales!

Love,
Marti

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Finally - some pictures!

Marc and his dog, Kye. They came to visit us last weekend. The dog obviously made herself at home ;o)


Katie and Brendan on Halloween.



Brendan and Daddy at the Broncos v. Jacksonville football game.

Katie - right after she said, "Sea(n), you my hero". She loves her big brothers!


Brendan and Daddy at the Rockies v. Arizona Diamondbacks game on 9/30.



Brendan's self-portrait that he created at school last year - and his art teacher entered it into the County Fair for him. He did a pretty good job on it, huh?!?!



Thursday, October 25, 2007

My Big Girl & My Sweet Boy

I am thrilled to be able to inform you that Katie is now a big girl - and is potty trained!!!!!!!!!!!! This is such a wonderful feeling. I can't even begin to tell you how excited I am. She was really quite easy to train, too. I began last Monday and by Thursday (just 3 short days later), she was done. I am loving this.

My sweet boy has been very sick. We nearly had to call an ambulance for him on Sunday. He had been sick since Wed. night, but nothing major. I went to a scrapbooking retreat in Estes Park on Friday, but came home Saturday night (a day early) because I had a feeling I should come home. Well, I am so thankful for that little prompting. Sunday morning I woke early and went downstairs to catch up on email. I heard Brendan making a strange noise so went in to check on him. Well, he was struggling to breathe. I took him upstairs to take his inhaler, tylenol, etc., but his breathing became worse. He was gasping for air. He had a bad croupy cough, then wouldn't be able to inhale after coughing. I opened the front door to get some cold air in his lungs and told Tom I was taking him to the ER. Tom saw Brendan (and the look on my face) and decided we probably should call the ambulance. As I picked up the phone to dial, we saw that Brendan was getting a little air and decided that driving would be just as quick as waiting for an ambulance. Katie was screaming to go with me (because I'd been gone to Estes) so Tom took him to the hospital. I called the ER to inform them that they were on their way, called Tom's sister to see if she would come watch Katie, and prayed that Brendan was ok. I finally made it to the hospital. They did two breathing treatments, a dose of steroids, and chest x-rays. He had severe croup and his airway has completely closed off (x-rays confirmed it). They let us bring him home a while later. I took him for a follow-up in Ft. Collins on Tuesday and he was quite improved. He went to school yesterday - he had been out a week. He is still extremely fatigued, but feeling quite a bit better.

To top it all off, Katie is sick again!!! She was sick for 16 days before the dr. put her on an antibiotic last Thursday. She improved for a couple of days, and now has a 101 degree fever again. I am guessing that she is catching Brendan's virus from the weekend. Hopefully she doesn't react as severely as he did. I need to completely sterilize my house after this. Ugh!!!!!

Tom and the boys wanted to attend the World Series in Denver this weekend. I am sure most of you heard about the trouble that that Rockies' website experienced when tickets went on sale. Unfortunately, after spending a total of 5 hours online trying to buy tickets, I was unable to get any. So, we will watch the games on TV and hope that the Rockies begin playing better than they did last night in Boston. That was a sad game. Maybe they'll get some spark when they get home to Denver.

Sean is moving here next week!!! He is going to come work in Cheyenne until he can get a job at the mine in Kemmerer, WY. They are hiring, but not until January. He wants a change of scenery (and a better paying job than he can get in Randolph, UT) so he is coming here to stay for a couple of months! We are all so excited to having him coming back home, even if it is for a short time.

Marc is working at the lab at Utah State again. He really likes it, but would like more hours. They had promised him 40 hours/week, but they aren't busy enough to keep him that much. He is doing well and seems happy to be home.

Well, that is the latest drama from Wyoming. Hopefully you are all healthier than we are right now. I'll try to keep up better this next week.

Blessings!
Marti

Saturday, October 13, 2007

A quick update

Well, let's see........

Virus on the computer - Tom needs to see if he can save it. All of our vacation pics are on it because I hadn't had time to back them up onto disc. Ugh. Luckily he hooked up the old computer so I can at least check my email.

Brendan sick.

Katie sick.

Marti sick - twice.

Tom got hit in the arm by a golf ball. Bad, bad bruise, but apparently no permanent damage.

Tom and Brendan went to watch the Denver Broncos lose to Jacksonville - they even got to sit in the south stands (the rowdy area).

Tom and Brendan went to watch the Colorado Rockies play on 9/30 - they beat the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Marc is home from Alaska - yea! He arrived home late Wednesday night.

Sean is still in his cast for another month, but there have been some positive signs of healing.

Sean came home alst weekend - we had a blast with him!!! It was so good to see him. It was the first time in three years that he was "Sean" again. Awesome weekend!

Rockies are in the NLCS - and Tom is soooooo excited (even moreso since the Broncos are sucking air right now).

Marti had stitches in her back for 4 out of 5 weeks - mole removed, almost melanoma, so had to have larger piece cut out of my back a week after getting first set of stitches taken out. Bad allergic reaction to the steri-strips and bandages. No fun at all. major permanent scars from this one. Ick.

Brendan was allergy-tested. He is allergic to several things, but the dr. told him that I still hold the record around their office. Unfortunately for Brendan, he appears to be taking after me in the allergy department.

Oh, and I cut part of my finger off with my rotary cutter while cutting out a baby quilt. Sucks to be me - big time.

Other than all of that - life is wonderful! ;o)

I'll update more thoroughly when I get my other computer back. Hopefully I get my other computer back. . . Mike! WE need your help desperately!!!!!

Blessings-
Marti

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Feeling Sappy . . .

I rarely get "sappy and sentimental" about anything - either publicly or privately. But, for some reason, I am feeling it today. And the oddest thing triggered it. This will prove what a goof I am. Anyway, I digress. As I was watching the OJ fiasco yesterday (I am such a news junkie), I was transported back to the infamous bronco chase in 1994. Tom and I were engaged, just starting out on this crazy journey we've been sharing for 13 years. He was working his long summer hours. I was at home waiting for his return. And I missed him like crazy.

Fast forward to yesterday. Tom was working longer hours than normal, but nothing like he used to. I was at home waiting for his return, but with our two small children. And I still missed him like crazy.

How many people are blessed to still be so happy, content, and giddy after 13 years of marriage. My heart honestly skips a beat when he pulls up in front of the house each night after work. I still smile when I hear his voice on the phone. And I would still rather spend 100% of my time with HIM than anyone else!

It hasn't always been easy. or wonderful. or fun. We've had some really tough times. And I think the hard times made us cherish one another even more. After you struggle for something, it is that much more special to you. I am grateful for him each and every day. I thank God for him each and every day. I feel beyond blessed. I still can't believe that I am the one he chose to share his life with. The past 13 years have absolutely FLOWN by.

So, my dear. My love. Light of my life. (I usually say this sarcastically when he has done somethign to irk me). Inside joke. Anway, I digress again. . . This time it isn't sarcastic . . .

So, my dear. My love. Light of my life - I wanted to publicly tell you that you are my knight in shining armor - my prince. My heart is yours ever more. I love you beyond words.

,UOY EVOL I (another inside joke)
Forever + 2 days
M

Saturday, September 15, 2007

OK. I am such a slacker!!!

Wow. Where does the time go? I can't believe how long it's been since I checked in. Let's see. . . school started, MOPS started, Katie's music classes just started, Tom has been uber busy at work, etc., etc., etc.

Quick update on Kay - she is improving! She has this young, good-looking physical therapist who comes to her house twice a week to help her with her exercises. Where do I sign up for that ?!?! He keeps her motivated and happy - and she hasn't even complained about any of this. Uncle Don is still staying with her, which is a huge blessing to me. I know that when he goes back home, most of this will fall to me because I don't work outside the home. I don't mind at all, seriously. It's just been a blessing to have him here with her (and the dog-in-law).

Tom is finally going to be able to open up a small office in Cheyenne! YEA!!!!!!!!!!!! He was told that if they got another City project, they'd open an office and he wouldn't have to commute every day. Well, he got the greenway project here, and he'll hopefully be opening shop within the next few months. It'll be nice not having to fill his car up as often ;o)

Marc is officially on Kodiak Island. He called during his break between the two locations and seems really happy. He won't be able to call until he is coming home (no phones up there). I worry about him, but am happy that he has found his passion in life.

Sean had surgery on Thursday to remove the bone stimulator. He seems to be healing well and isn't in as much pain as he was before the surgery. Today is his 21st birthday! He is planning on going out partying tonight . . . with his dad. Hopefully they don't get into trouble ;o) He and his friend, Corey, will be here on 10/6. They want to go to the Wyoming game. We'll celebrate his birthday then - without the partying. LOL.

Brendan is loving 2nd Grade. He sits by his friend, Cameron. They've been in the same class since Kindergarten. Hopefully it continues. He was at a sleepover last night at his friend, Riley's, house. He was pretty excited. I kept expecting a phone call from him, but didn't hear anything so I guess he had a good time.

Katie is such a sweetie these days. I love this age. This is the age that I always get baby-hungry again. It is a good thing we can't have any more, or I'd be seriously tempted right now. She is the joy of my heart. We are enjoying our days together while Brendan is in school. She is always so excited to see him after school that she runs up to him and throws her arms around his waist to give him a hug. Since we are usually in front of the school (and his friends) when this takes place, it can be quite embarassing for him!

Well, that's all from here. I have some pics to post later. Cute shots of the two little ones. Hopefully I can get to it this weekend.

Blessings!
Marti

Monday, August 27, 2007

Tag!

Got tagged so I thought I'd post it here - these are fun to do sometimes. Not much time to post this morning. I'm hoping to do a complete update later this week. Kay is home and recovering - and she has Ellie with her! Bren starts school on Wednesday (I am so sad, I don't want him gone all day). The idea book with my layouts arrived on Friday! You can order it by going to http://www.memorymaniac.com/ - it is called The Memory Mania Masterpieces Idea Book. My layouts are on pages 9, 40, and 72. I am sooooooooooooo excited!

Here it is:

Yourself: blessed
Your partner: strong, loving, faithful, wonderful, kind, caring, giving
Your hair: Freshly cut & colored - yea!
Your mother: is in Florida
Your father: just had knee surgery
Your favorite item: My iPod and my fab Rowenta iron (yes, my iron)
Your dream last night: I don't remember
Your favorite drink: Starbucks Green Tea Frappuccino (Katie's fave, too)
Your dream car: VW Bug convertible
Your dream home: would have no neighbors, would be on a beach in a nice, warm locale, would have 6 bedrooms, a huge kitchen, and one absolutely fabulous scrap/quilting room
The room you are in now: family room
Your fear: My children won't be healthy and safe; I stay fat forever; I lose sight of who I am in Christ; I am not the mother that my children deserve
Where you want to be in 10 yrs: healthy and happy and fulfilled
Who you hung out with last night: Tom, Brendan and Katie
You're not: exactly where I want or need to be right now, but working on getting there
Wish list item: to win the powerball (but that would require actually buying a ticket, which I never do ;o) )
Last thing you did: Read the newspaper
What are you wearing: my jammies
Favorite weather: a crisp fall day
Favorite book: Anything by Beth Moore
Last thing you ate: Dinner last night
Your life: is peaceful and happy and wonderful
Your mood: great!
Your best friend: Tom.
What are you thinking about right now: taking a shower and making my "to-do" list for the week
Your car: Honda Accord
WHat are you are doing at this moment: bloggin'
Relationship status: Married to my dearest friend
What's on TV: Nothing down here - Disney Channel in my bedroom (Katie is watching it)
Last time you laughed: this morning when Katie got up and demanded to see "Be-Be" (Brendan) because she missed him

Blessings!

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Pictures

Ellie - my dog-in-law from he**. She is, truly the worst dog I've ever been around. She is our. new. houseguest. We are the lucky recipients of her companionship until Kay is able to care for her again. Yes, Brendan is allergic to dogs. Yes, everyone in this family KNOWS Brendan is allergic to dogs. Yet, somehow, we were chosen to care for the little beast. She shrieks - yes shrieks - unless she is in bed with us at night. She chews on anything except her dogfood. She is extremely spoiled. Please pray for a quick recovery for Kay - we cannot stand much more of this dog ;o) .
Brendan at the Park in Grand Lake, CO. We had a super day there and took a break to let the kids play for a while.
Brendan and Katie at Grand Lake. They loved seeing the water and throwing rocks into the lake.
Katie in Grand Lake. Their downtown was quite charming and we enjoyed seeing all of the shops.

You can click on the pictures to enlarge them.

Kay is being weaned off of her ventilator. Hopefully she'll be out of ICU by Tuesday.

That's all for now. I had a nice, long post written - and then Blogger got locked up or something - and lost it. I was not happy. So, this message isn't as long, or interesting, as the last one - but it'll have to do for tonight. I need to get kids to bed - and try to get Ellie settled down for the night, too.

Blessings!
Marti

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Update!

Kay had surgery this morning. She was put in ICU on Friday due to high carbon dioxide levels and they had to postpone surgery until they were regulated. They had to replace the ball portion of her hip, and put a steel rod in her femur. She will be in the hospital, then at a rehab facility, then can hopefully return home in about a month or so.

I'll update again later!

Blessings-
Marti

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Home.........and all heck breaks loose!

We had a blast in Winter Park. It was very relaxing and in the mid-70's all week! It was pure heaven! Tom had to work the first two days there (I was not a happy girl), but the rest of the trip was wonderful. We went to Winter Park Resort and spent the day on the Alpine Slide, playing mini-golf, running the maze, etc. Katie fell asleep on her 2nd run down the slide - it was so cute! Tom spent a day golfing at Pole Creek GC - which he loved. We spent a day in Grand Lake - very pretty, but a little crowded. We went on the Georgetown Loop RR. The rest of the time was spent relaxing, swimming, etc.

The only bummer? Katie arrived home with double ear infections. She started screaming when we were 20 minutes away from home and had a 103 degree temp within two hours. It was Saturday night. During Frontier Days. Ugh. We had to take her to the ER (again, on a Saturday DURING FRONTIER DAYS). Luckily I called ahead and the hospital saved us a bed for her so we didn't have to wait long.

Three days after returning home, Tom's mother fell and broke her hip. She is having surgery sometime in the next few days. Her bp is too low to operate right now so they are giving her plasma and trying to stabilize her first. No fun for her - or us. It is going to be a long recovery for her, I'm afraid.

Lastly, my niece is having her tonsils out on Monday so they've asked me if I will take care of her next week while she recovers. She is 16 so hopefully she is self-sufficient by the following week.

I'm ready to go back on vacation after all of this.

I'll post some pictures and an update on Kay later in the week - when things settle down. I hope things settle down.

ps Our dear friend, Caroline, has been battling cancer for over a year now. She finished all treatments a this past fall and went in for a follow-up PET scan last week. Unfortunately, the scan showed an area of concern. Please keep Caroline and her family in your prayers.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Leaving Town!

Vacation - all I ever wanted.......
Vacation - happy to get away.....

For those of you who aren't as OLD as I am, that was a song by The GoGo's from many years ago. And, yes, I am lame and am sitting here with that song stuck in my head at the moment. I am such a loser ;o)

Anyway, we will be out of town all next week. We are leaving Cheyenne right in the height of Frontier Days and the heat. We are retreating to a quiet mountain hideaway (well, a condo in Winter Park) for a week. The temps are expected to be in the mid-70's (compared to the mid-90's here) all next week and we cannot wait. Of course, Tom is working like crazy trying to get some projects/proposals done before we leave. This is his pre-vacation ritual. Never fails. It happens every time. It drives me nuts. But, once we are up Winter Park, I will forget all about it and he won't be stuck sleeping on the sofa bed. Well, maybe not after the first night or two ;o) .

Brendan's last golf lesson is tomorrow - hallelujah! He spent last night with Uncle Don, comes home tonight, has a birthday party to attend tomorrow morning, golf lessons in the afternoon, home to pack, then leaves on vacation on Saturday morning. That kid lives a great life. I wanna trade!

Sean is still in quite a bit of pain, but seems to be slowly improving. I talk to him daily and he sounds a little better each day. He has an appointment on Monday (and x-rays and a cast change).

I hope all of you have a wonderful remainder of July. I will check back after our trip and post pics of the kids and all of the fun we have planned for them.

Blessings-
Marti

Friday, July 13, 2007

Sean Update

He is pretty sore - and pretty tired - but doing OK. His doctor called him this morning to check on him and told him that they put a bone stimulator in his wrist, so he will have to have another surgery in three months to remove the wires. But, the doctor also said that, once he got inside the wrist, it actually looked more like it would heal that he thought it would look. Sooooooooo, hopefully he is right. I'll update again when I know more!

Blessings-
Marti

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Medical Stuff!

Sean just came out of surgery (he was in for over 4 hours!) and things are looking pretty good for him. The doctor cleaned out all of the broken pieces of bone, scar tissue, etc. and grafted some of his hip bone into his wrist. He thinks that he should heal really well, providing Sean follows all of his instructions. Prayers are still appreciated.

I went to the allergist today because I've been so darned miserable lately. Well, I am allergic to just about everything that grows. I reacted to: 8/13 trees, 12/13 weeds, 6/6 grasses, 1/4 molds, 2/4 dusts, and all three agricultural crops (alfalfa, sugar beet, and corn). They want to start me on shots right after our vacation, but they will take up to a year before I feel the full effect. If they don't work in that time frame, the shots will be discontinued because they aren't working. If they do work, I will receive the shots for 5 years and then should be able to stop them and have full immunity to the allergens.

That's the update from here! I'll write more later.

Blessings-
Marti

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Here is a layout of Katie-bug. She wanted an ice cream cone for breakfast!!!!!!!! Yes, I gave in. I am such a sap..............

I just found her upstairs - asleep in my bed - holding the plate of cupcakes on her lap. She was trying to be sneaky, then conked out before she could complete the job. I was DYING to take a picture, but Tom took the camera to work today to photograph a project!!!!!!!! He is not in my good graces at the moment ;o) .

Enjoy!
Marti

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Playoffs!


Brendan's baseball team will be in the playoffs next weekend. He is very excited and we are just praying that he can hit the ball again ;o) . Here is the picture of his hit on the 4th. Golf starts on Wednesday, then makeup game Thursday, then playoffs Saturday and Sunday. Busy week for the B-Man (and Mom).
Tom has his golf tournament next weekend, so I'm not sure how much he'll be around for the games. Hopefully the schedule works out ok though. He played today in Kimball, NE because the Wyoming Open Golf Tournament is here in Cheyenne at his usual course. He had a good time playing, but struggled a little bit. But, you know what they say.........A bad day golfing beats a good day at work. No complaints from him ;o)
Katie was the evening entertainment last night at Brendan's team BBQ. There was a neighbor girl who does Mexican Dancing (I'm not sure what type), but she was showing everyone her routine and Katie jumped in and danced right along with her. She was the hit of the party. And, wouldn't you know, the ONE TIME I don't take my camera - I needed it. I would've LOVED to get pictures of that. It was sooooooooooooooooooo cute. Everyone told me that I should put her in dance classes. I actually checked that out a couple of months ago, but nobody in town takes toddlers until they are 3 years old. So, she has another year to practice.
Sean's surgery is Thursday. Please continue to pray for complete healing this time. I am so worried about him. I'll update to the blog when he is out of surgery.
Marc is still enjoying Alaska. We talked to him last night and I still can't get over how happy he sounds. I am used to his "broke, depressed college student" voice - this is his "fly-fishing guide extraordinaire" voice. He really is loving life.
Life is the same as usual for me............. I am scrapbooking when I get a chance. I've put in for a few more magazine calls, but haven't heard anything yet. The two books that are printing my layouts in them will be out this summer sometime. Haven't heard a definitive release date yet - but, believe me, when I do I'll let you all know right away!!!! Everyone has been so supportive - asking when they'll be out and if I will let them know so they can buy one. I appreciate you all so very much. I am blessed to have such wonderful family and friends. You are, truly, the best!
Blessings-
Marti



Wednesday, July 04, 2007

HE DID IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

Brendan hit the ball tonight! I cannot even begin to explain how excited the entire crowd was when his bat made contact! The kids in the dugout cleared out and were jumping up and down - the parents were screaming and jumping up and down - and the other team was like, "WTH?!?!". He got tagged out at first base (barely) - but when he turned around to run back to the dugout, his smile was from ear to ear! Tom and I were almost in tears. We didn't realize, until this morning, just how petrified he actually was of the pitching machine. I mean - TERRIFIED! The poor kid has been getting up there, game after game after game, and striking out. He was swinging with his eyes closed and just getting his "at bat" over with every time. Everyone kept telling us it was his hand/eye coordination, but we knew better. He was hitting like crazy when Tom pitched at home - no problems with his coordination there. He was just too afraid to watch the ball. I thought the coaches were going to pass out when he actually hit the ball tonight. Unfortunately, a nasty thunderstorm hit Cheyenne during the second inning so the game will be finished next week. He plays Saturday morning. We have to take him to get a batting helmet (his reward for hitting the ball so well) on Friday and he wants to go practice again after he gets it. We have now, officially, created a monster. He is a baseball machine now. He won't take his uniform off tonight and he is making Tom play ball with him right now. Hopefully we can get the bat out of his hands before the fireworks begin in an hour!

Blessings to you all!!!!!

Love,
Marti

Happy 4th!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


The kids have been thoroughly enjoying their summer break. Lots of time spent in the pool and on the slip'n slide. They are loving life. Of course, they are the only children I know of whose father runs the hose from the kitchen faucet to give them warm water, rather than using the water from the outside spigot. They are soooooooooooooooooooo spoiled that way. Also notice Brendan's technique on the slide - he makes his father slide him (so does Katie). He goes further that way ;o) . Wouldn't it be fun to be a kid again - especially with a Dad like Tom.

Marc called from Alaska - he is enjoying his job so much. They got a fun group of guests in this week. Some guests he's guided once before (during his first year). He said they are all great guys. I miss him more than I can say, but he sounds so happy when I talk to him that it is hard to complain.

Sean is scheduled for surgery on 7/12. Please pray for complete healing this time, if you don't mind. This is his last attempt to avoid having his wrist fused permanently. If this one doesn't work, they have no choice. They are going to go in and scrape the bone out, remove all of the crumbed pieces of bone floating in his wrist, and graft a large chunk of bone from his hip into the wrist. I can't be there for the surgery (nobody to keep the little ones for me).

Brendan's last regular season baseball game is Saturday. He plays tonight and Saturday morning. We spent all morning at the ball fields trying to help him get over his fear of the pitching machine. I think we succeeded!!!!!! It was a rough couple of hours though. Poor kid. When we first got there, he would flinch when the ball left the maching. He was so afraid. By the time we left, he was hitting with no problems. Hopefully his streak will continue through tonight's game.

Katie is talking more each day. They are building a couple of restaurants at the mall so there are piles of dirt in the parking lot. The other day we drove by and from the backseat we hear, "A sandbox - cool!". Tom and I couldn't help but laugh. She is so observant and talks up a storm. It isn't always easy to understand her, but SHE knows what she is saying ;o) .

Tom's schedule has eased up a little bit lately. We are getting ready for our trip to Winter Park at the end of the month - can't wait. Tom is taking his clubs, I'm taking my scrapbooking stuff, and the kids are planning on which games and movies they are going to pack. It'll be a nice trip.

I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday today. We are so thankful for our country and the freedoms we enjoy. We are so blessed.

Keep cool!
Marti







Sunday, June 17, 2007

Happy Father's Day!

We had a wonderful day today. We spent the day relaxing and hanging out together. We went to the movies to see Surf's Up. The kids loved it. Very cute movie. Can't wait until it comes out on DVD.

Sean got here on Thursday and left this morning. It was so wonderful to see him. We've missed him so much - he hadn't been home since Christmas!

Marc called yesterday, finally. He is settled in AK and doing well. He says their Rookies are awesome this year and they should have a fun crew. I still worry about him, but he sounds very happy.

Brendan loved his first week of summer. His last day of school was great. His teacher, Mrs. Brady, loved the Ladybug quilt we made her. Baseball is going well. They won again yesterday. So far they have only lost one game. He is in a batting slump though - can't figure it out. WE are thinking he is doing more of a "golf swing" than a "baseball swing". He begins CCD tomorrow so that will keep him tied up for a couple of weeks.

Katie is doing well. She is so darned sweet. This is what I found when I opened her door after her nap last week. She was standing there, decked out in her sunglasses (placed upside-down) and her purse. She cracks me up!!!! Such a fun little soul.
I received an email request two more of my layouts this morning. It is from the same publisher who requested my very first layout. I will have three in their book. I am so excited.

Life is good. We are all doing well - healthy - happy - loving life and each other. We are truly blessed.

Love,
Marti

Friday, June 08, 2007

Snow in June

Yes, we had SNOW yesterday! It didn't stick, but it was snowing nonetheless. Wild.

Brendan had a baseball game on Wednesday night - in 60 mph winds. NO kidding. The gusts were clocked at 59 mph. They made the young kids play in it, but cancelled the Post 6 game (16-17 year-olds). Go figure. Poor Brendan could barely stand to bat. The gusts were coming up behind him and almost blowing him over. Before the game even started, he started crying hysterically and begging me to take him home. I knew it was windy, but for him to cry like that is highly unusual. Well, we finally got it out of him that he thought we were going to have a tornado. He was terrified. Tom wasn't there - another late night at work for him - so I had to have another Dad help me calm him down and explain that it was just windy, no tornado was in sight. Poor kid. After two hours in it, Katie had had enough and began crying so I took her to the car and put a movie on for her. Some friends of ours brought Brendan to the car after the game. The wind was so bad that we could barely breathe. My lungs were on FIRE after being out in it that long.

Today is Brendan's last day of school. Summer is here (in spite of the snow yesterday). We are all looking forward to a little "unscheduled" time together. We have a busy summer planned, but there will be plenty of down-time, too. When I was a child, summers were such a carefree time - full of sun, swimming, and friends. I miss those days. It isn't as much fun when you are the mom. Although it is magical to see it through the eyes of your children. I keep thinking that I need to come up with a fun "last-day-of-school" tradition for us, but can't decide on what to do. Maybe take him out for pie or ice cream? Zoo trip (we've done that one before)? Ft. Collins for lunch with Dad? I don't know. I'll think of something before 10:30 though ;o)

Here's to sunny thoughts!

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Wow! Another One!

I just got an email from another publisher asking for another one of my layouts for their upcoming book! I am sooooooooo excited. I just barely started submitting for these pubcalls - and I've been picked twice in twelve days! Can't tell you how thrilling this has been. I'll let you know when the books come out!

Until next time.............

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Music Therapy

My grandmother has advanced-stage Alzheimers Disease. She hasn't spoken a coherent sentence in years, and it has been even longer since she was able to recognize any one of her six children. She has lived in the Alzheimers Unit at a nursing home for a few years now (before that she was in Assisted Living), but was recently moved to a more intensive nursing environment due to the progression of her disease. With this in mind, I am quite sure you can imagine our skepticism when the facility suggested they try music therapy with her. They said that it lasts about 45 minutes and that oftentimes, patients will be able to speak with their family members, and the results are often quite positive. After the session, the patient reverts back, and it doesn't work on each and every patient - but they felt it was worth a try with Grandma. They indicated that sometimes it can connect some of those loose wires in the brain (so to speak) for a few minutes of family time.

My mother was in Wyoming for my niece's wedding, and my Aunt Linda was the only one there. She wasn't expecting much from the session, but figured she'd go to support grandma and to see how things went. What she witnessed was amazing. My grandmother remembered some of the names of her children. She was able to communicate that she was in a tremendous amount of pain in her feet. She was able to actually speak and converse with my Aunt Linda for about half an hour (she didn't recognize her as her daughter, Linda - but she spoke sentences that made sense). It was such a miracle for them to have those moments together. They repeated the therapy on Thursday, after my mother returned from her trip. My Aunt Sandy was able to come down from Georgia for the session as well. Once again, they were amazed at the results. She knew my mother had been to see her every day until her trip - and she told Mom that she shouldn't leave town again, she should come see her instead. She was aware that my Aunt's husband was tired from his trip down there. She was able to connect with her family in a way that was not possible just moments before. This time together has been such a blessing to them all. Once again, she reverted back within about half an hour - but those 30 minutes were so precious to those present. Hospice still only gives grandma six months at the most - but at least there have been these two bright and shining moments for her children to cherish.

I am so grateful for this time that her family had with her this past week. I am grateful for the wonderful, giving, loving workers who care for her every day. And I am grateful to God for giving them this gift of conversation.

Blessings to you all.
Marti

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Something kinda neat..........

Well, shortly after I posted my last entry here, I got a surprising email. A company who is publishing a scrapbooking idea book wants to publish one of my layouts! I was shocked. I've submitted to a couple of magazines, but nothing serious so I didn't expect to hear anything back. I was so excited when I received the notice. I mailed my layout and my executed contract back today. I can't wait to see the book. It will be out late summer and I will keep everyone updated ;o) I am just so happy about this. I feel so blessed.

Tom worked most of the weekend. He did get the flowers planted at the cemetery though. The poor guy worked until 3 am this morning, and he is still at the office right now. His submittal is due on Thursday - hopefully he gets it all done without working too much more over time.

Brendan's baseball game got rained out tonight, which is just as well because he is sick again. He worked on his baseball swing this weekend and we think he's got it back again. Tom took him golfing a couple of weeks ago and it really wrecked his baseball swing. His team is still undefeated, but they only won by one point last week so their coach was displeased with them. Hopefully their next game will be a fun one for them - even if they don't win by 37 points.

Katie is doing great this week. She is adding new words to her vocabulary every day. She talks constantly - and loves to sing. Her favorite song is........Burning Love by Elvis. She definitely takes after her mom-mom. Love him. Anyway, when that song comes on, she drops everything and starts dancing - almost hopping around the room. It is hysterical! But, she also likes The Wiggles and can do most of their dances, too. She must've got THAT from her dad ;o)

My niece's wedding was beautiful. I wish I could've gone. Tom's work schedule was just too tight. But, I spoke with Angel tonight and she said everything was wonderful, bride was beautiful, reception was great, etc. I can't wait to see the pictures. It is so hard to believe that these kids are getting to be adults. Time just sails by so quickly. I'm sure I'll wake up next week and it'll be Katie getting married. I can't even fathom that - nor do I want to. It just makes me want to freeze time so I can relish these moments with the two younger ones.

I'm working on a terrific bible study right now written by Beth Moore. She is blessed with such a gift and is great at "making it real" for her readers. I have read several of her books, but this is only the second Bible Study of hers that I've done. I have gained so much from her work - she is fabulous!!!! Another recommendation here - you won't be sorry!

I think I forgot to mention that I will be in Leadership for my MOPS group next year. I am really excited about this. This can be such a stressful season of mothering (although, which season isn't stressful for mothers?!?!). I am so happy that I have this group of moms sharing the journey with me. There are some really fabulous women in leadership next year and I know I will learn so much from all of them. I feel so blessed to have this opportunity.

Well, that is all from my windy corner of Wyoming. May God continue to bless you and your families. You are in my thoughts and prayers daily.

Blessings-
Marti

Friday, May 25, 2007

Here we go again..............

On Monday, the school called and said that Brendan had fallen on the playground at lunch and had skinned his arm and that he had a nasty bump on his head. I went to the school, looked at it, and took him to be checked out - the injury was just too close to his temple for me to be comfortable. Another trip to the ER. My word, those people are going to think I am an abusive mother or something. Luckily, this one happened at school ;o) . He didn't have a concussion, thank heavens. He is feeling pretty good - just bruised up. They wrapped up his arm, said to watch him for any strange behavior (luckily, it wasn't Katie I had to watch for this ;o) ). He feels fine now - and he loved showing off his bandage at school the next day.



Katie is doing swell this week - no significant falls or injuries to report. Her new word this week is "No-kay" as in "NOT OK". It cracks me up. "Katie, it's time for your nap." "No-Kay!" Ugh! I guess it is better than just a plain old "NO!".
There is no school today or Monday! I love long weekends like this. Tom worked today, but will be off on Monday. I am going scrapbooking in Ft. Collins all day tomorrow (10 am until midnight). I can't wait. Maybe Tom will have all of the cemetery flowers planted while I'm gone ;o) . Well, one can always hope..................
My niece is getting married tomorrow in Evanston. Prayers are going up for a wonderful day - and a happy lifetime together. Congrats Tawna & Devin.
Anyway, have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend. I hope the memories of lost loved ones bring you joy and peace this weekend. Our love and best wishes to everyone!

Friday, May 18, 2007

Finally - a Real Update!

Life here just keeps flying by. The children continue to grow before my eyes. The two older boys are adults, and it just doesn't seem possible. Tom stays busy at work. And me? Well, I am just watching it all happen. Soaking it in, so to speak. Enjoying the view. Cherishing each moment.

Marc has decided to go to Kodiak in the fall. He is taking a Leave of Absence from school, which doesn't thrill us - but we're going to support him in this. He leaves in a few weeks and we won't see him until October, at the earliest. He is very excited though. He loves going to Alaska and he is counting the days until he leaves. I am excited for him, but I miss him terribly when he is up there. I don't have the luxury of picking up the phone and calling him whenever I want to, and that is really hard sometimes. But, the joy and excitement in his voice is contagious (almost), so I tell him I'm excited and happy for him, too.

Sean has had to withdraw his name from the Exxon job. He needs to get his wrist surgery done now. It is getting worse each week and he can't put it off any longer. I just wish he and his father would have listened to Tom and me when this all happened - and just taken care of it then. But, he thought he'd be playing football forever and missing a season for rehab just wasn't an option for him. I just pray he is able to heal properly this time and that he doesn't have to undergo any further surgeries. I pray he doesn't have any long-term complications, even though I know he will. I pray he is able to get a good job when this is all done - and finally start living his life. He will be in a cast for approximately 5 months. He sounds good and upbeat though. He is going to join us on vacation in July, which will be nice. It'll be strange to have only three of the kids with us - we'll miss Marc a lot, I'm sure.

Brendan is excited for summer. He has a busy schedule already. Baseball has started. They had their first game on Wednesday and his team won 39-12 (no, that is not a typo). He will be taking Summer Religious Ed (CCD) classes in June for two weeks. He will have golf lessons in July, then vacation at the end of July. But, we'll have a lot of time just to hang out, too. We're planning on going to the Ft. Collins pool quite a bit this year. He loves going there and I'm sure Katie will enjoy it, too. He is riding his bike like a fiend now - his big bike even! He was so afraid to ride it, but he caught right on and loves it! He has had a cold and sinus infection this week, which has been no fun - but I think he is finally getting over it.

Katie is Katie. Always perky, moody, sweet, energetic, exasperating, etc. That girl has it all! She goes from "hot" to "cold" in a flash. Her mouth has recovered nicely and she just has a couple of scars still there. Hopefully the Vitaman E will help that. I have to put sunscreen lip balm on her like crazy so her scars don't burn, but other than that she is great. She has embraced the Terrible Twos with a vengeance. I can't turn around without finding a new mess that she's made. She loves following her brother around and doing whatever he does. She can count to 10 now, except she refuses to say "one". It is so funny. If you say one, she'll say two, three...... But she won't start with "one" - ever. I guess we have a few years to get that one down ;o)

Tom is playing golf today - an office team-building afternoon. He has a big deadline on the 31st and had to bring two engineers in from San Diego to help him get it done. It's nice to have the resources available to him to do that. When he worked in Cheyenne, it was only Tom doing the work on his projects - and that led to long hours away from home. This time, he is home on time, and is much less stressed. He and Brendan are getting ready for Memorial Weekend. They always go plant flowers on Tom's family's graves. It is a two-day process, but they both enjoy doing it. Katie might be able to go this year. Brendan was about this age when he started helping his Dad do it.

Nothing much is happening with me, thank heavens. Life is nice and quiet. I'm looking forward to summer - and a little "unscheduled" time. I've been scrapbooking a little more lately. I have a few quilts to finish within the next few weeks, and a bridal veil for my friend's daughter's wedding to complete, too. It sounds like a lot, but they are all things I enjoy doing. The veil will have a ribbon-edging on it. I've never made one like that, so I'm going to practice on one first - only I'll put pink ribbon on the edges and make it into a tutu for Katie. She'll love that.

Well, that is life right now. Just the ordinary. Just the way we like it.

Until next time............

Blessings,

Marti

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Just some random layouts of the kids

I finished these this week and thought I'd post them. These pictures were taken quite some time ago and I am amazed at how much they've grown.




Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Oops, she did it again!

I know - bad title. I shouldn't associate anything "Britney" with my darling daughter - but this time it fits. She fell again and hit her mouth, lips, teeth, etc. She decided to climb on to our bedside table, and fell face-first onto the hardwood floor. We seem to be healing well this time, but this is what it looked like after our trip to the ER a couple of weeks ago:

On a brighter note, the three boys are still injury-free! She is really doing well. I can't believe how much she is talking now - new words each day. She is up over 100 words in her vocabulary now. Must be a girl thing!

Here is an update on everyone else:

  • Brendan had a field trip today to the Butterfly Pavilion in Denver - had a super time. He wasn't brave enough to hold Rosie (their pet tarantula), but he did look at her.
  • Marc comes home this Sunday on his way to Nashville (short vacation before his summer in Alaska). He has requested we make Chipotle burritos for dinner. It will the last time we see him until next fall (after he gets back from Alaska).
  • Sean finds out in a week or so if he made the final list for the job he intervied for last week. We are praying he gets hired. It would be a great opportunity for him.
  • Saturday is National Scrapbook Day!!!!!!!!! I'm going to scrapbook Saturday from 9 am to midnight!!!! Hopefully I'll get a lot of work done.
  • Tom is having a bad week at work. Problem client, etc. He is really stressed out right now. Prayers would be appreciated!!!






Blessings-
Marti

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Big Accomplishments

Well, we have 3 newsworthy items to report this week!

Sean got some good news last week..........he has an interview with Exxon finally! He is hoping to get the job. The interview is in a couple of weeks and we are praying it all works out for him. If he doesn't get hired, he'll get his wrist operated on again because it didn't heal properly from the last surgery. If he does get hired, he'll get his wrist surgery in a year (when he has some vacation and sick time saved up). He sounds really happy.

Brendan rode his bike without training wheels last night - YEA!!!!!!!!!!! We've been working on that one for a few years (yes, literally). He finally decided he was going to just do it all by himself, so he began practicing on the driveway on his old bike (smaller than his new bike). He came in last night and said, "I rode my bike and pedaled 10 times without tipping over!". We ran out to watch him and, sure enough, he was cruising on the driveway - and even made turns without losing his balance. Then he said, "Are you so proud of me?". Yes, we were soooooooooo proud of him.

Marc called yesterday to tell us that he had been offered a guide position on Kodiak Island next fall. It is with the same company he works for in the summer, he would just extend his time up there until the middle - end of October. Unfortunately, this would mean he would miss fall semester at school. He has 3-3/4 semesters left to graduate. He is still pondering the opportunity and will make a decision shortly. We are so happy that his bosses enjoy his company enough to extend this invitation to him. He is great with their guests and a hard worker. We'll let you know what he decides.

Katie doesn't have anything special to report - but she is doing well, too. She is just as wild as ever - and so stinkin' cute! She went to a rodeo on Saturday (one of Marti's friends traveled to Ft. Collins to work at the rodeo over the weekend so we had to go to there to see him). She LOVED the horses and bulls. She loves her Little Ponies and refers to them as "Po's". Well, she loves horses and, unfortunately, refers to them as "Ho's". She kept saying "Ho - I ride, peeeeeaaase". When you ask her what a horse says, she says, "Mooooooooooo". We have a little work to do with her yet ;o)

Tom travels to California on Thursday for business. He will be back Saturday and we'll stay Saturday night in Denver because Brendan and Katie's Godparents will be visiting from Detroit! We are all looking forward to seeing them again. They are bringing their daughter for an interview for Grad School.

Everything else is quiet here. Nothing exciting with me - just the same old, same old. I spoke with my friend, Dan, on Sunday and he thought I was still working full-time (sometimes I WISH I was). When I explained that I didn't, he said, "Oh, so you're a retired housewife". Uh, yah, that's what I am..........................

Blessings-
Marti

Saturday, March 24, 2007

All things in perspective

Yesterday I thought I was possibly going to die - literally. I've used that term before - usually to describe feelings of excitement, surprise, embarrassment, etc. - but yesterday I was worried that I might actually be dying......soon.

After the surgery last month, I have been not feeling well at all. I had a kidney infection 3 weeks post-op, and then at 5 weeks post-op, I developed severe shoulder and chest pain on my left side. At first, I figured it was just a pulled muscle from sleeping funny since surgery (well, that is what the P/A at UW Family Medicine told me on Monday). She ran an EKG, which was normal, so she decided it was not a cardiac problem and, therefore, it was probably muscular so she gave me a prescription for muscle relaxers. The medicine didn't work at all (although they did knock me out every night, which was nice).

Yesterday, Tom and I drove to Loveland for my 6-week post-op visit. We were planning on going to the appointment - then driving to Golden, CO so Tom could take pics and do some measurements at his project site - then taking the kids to the zoo.

I had decided that maybe the shoulder/chest pain was pleurisy (lung inflamation). I asked my dr. what I should do about it and he became quite concerned that it was actually a pulmonary embolism (blood clot in my lung) - which is not uncommon after surgery. He listened to my lung and it was pretty noisy and he didn't like the location of the pain. He ordered me directly to the hospital across the street for a CT scan. Unfortunately, the last time I had one, I had a bad reaction to the dye they use, so they sent me home with a prescription of prednizone and told me to have the test done today. Dr. L said he was "moderately to seriously suspicious" of my condition.

I was cool and calm on the outside yesterday - I even joked with Tom that I should be able to go to the Rocky Mtn. Quilt Museum for a visit since "I could drop at any minute". I should've known how scared he was when he actually took me there - with the kids - for a tour and shopping expedition. He should've known how scared I was when I didn't even buy anything. He insisted we skip the zoo trip - he was too afraid to let me walk around there all afternoon. Of course, I didn't realize just how serious a P/E was until I got home last night and looked it up on WebMD. I fell asleep praying - and woke up doing the same.

I went in for the CT Scan this morning and the radiologist said he didn't see any sign of a P/E. Praise God. Prayers were answered BIG TIME. I am so grateful, so thankful, and so blessed to be healthy. Well, I do, actually, have pleurisy - but compared to a Pulmonary Embolism, that is pretty darn healthy.

I can't even describe the relief I felt when I received the news that the CT Scan was clear. I didn't realize how afraid I was until the moment I found out I was ok. If you've never heard the Tim McGraw song, "Live Like You Were Dying", I highly recommend downloading it. Fortunately, I only had 24 hours of having to live like I was dying but it was amazing how much more patient I was with the kids - and the traffic - and the hailstorm that hit as I was going in to make reservations at the restaurant for dinner (I got soaked) - and the pharmacist who took 2 hours to fill my prescription - and the long wait at the hospital for the test - etc. I think you get the idea.

I pray that I am able to keep this sense of patience and peace - the feeling of "all things in perspective". I am sure it will gradually decrease as time goes along (things like this usually do). But for now I'm going to enjoy it. Enjoy life. Enjoy my kids even more than I usually do. Enjoy the delicious feeling of being married to the most kind and loving man on the planet. Enjoy the fact that I am blessed to have both of my parents still living. Enjoy living so close to Tom's mother. Enjoy the wonderful friends I am blessed with. Enjoy a little "me" time by scrapbooking my childrens' pictures and reliving the wonderful memories we've made so far. Enjoy this rainy day, which enables us to stay inside and spend time just being together. I am just going to ENJOY.

Blessings to you all.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Wow! My Bad!

I can't believe it has been so long since my last update. Nothing exciting has happened - here is the latest:

1. Spent our anniversary in Ft. Collins at an awesome restaurant. Stephanie watched the kiddos so we could have some time together. Tom golfed that afternoon while I attended a baby shower - then we went to dinner. It was really nice.

2. The boys came home for Thanksgiving - it was a blast! It was so good to have them home.

3. Brendan had an awesome Christmas Program (Winter Program - to be PC). He had practiced so much at home that Katie knew the dances and words, too.

4. We had a good Christmas. The boys were able to come home again and we had an enjoyable holiday. Brendan had won a 20 lb. turkey in archery (he goes with Neal and Steph most Saturday mornings) so he wanted me to make it for Christmas when the boys were here.

5. Tom's mom got put in the hospital with pneumonia on 12/27. She is fine now and is home.

6. My mom will be here for 2-1/2 weeks in February to take care of Tom and the kids while I recuperate from surgery.

That is about it. I will try to post some Christmas pics soon. We just got a new computer and are in the process of transferring everything from our old one so it may be a little while before I can.

Blessings!