Monthly Archives: March 2007

Well, you asked….

There’s been this fun little interview game floating around – I saw it first on Stephanie’s site and then on Awesome Mom’s so I joined in to play… I’ve been running short of  blogging ideas and inspirations so maybe this will help get the flow going again. 🙂

Anyway it’s simple, really, some one asks you five questions and you answer them on your blog.  So, Awesome Mom asked me five questions and here they are (if you have a desire to be interviewed just say so, and I’m sure I can come up with some rather intriguing questions for you…if you dare…. heh)   🙂

1.  Knowing what you know now about Jacob’s heart defect if you could have chosen his birth order would you have had him first or not changed things at all? 

This is kind of a tough question because I can see the benefits to having him first.  The struggle and guilt of needing and wanting to be in two places at the same time was terribly difficult.  I couldn’t bear to be away from Jacob in the hospital long, but I couldn’t bear not being with my other three children at home.  I wouldn’t have had to worry about arranging school transportation and places for them stay, and it was rather traumatic for them as it was the rest of us.

However, on the flip side I wouldn’t have had three very helpful (though young) girls at home who really did a lot when we came from the hospital.  Jacob wouldn’t have the examples of his sisters, and I think that is one reason why he isn’t behind developmentally, because he wants to be just like them and sees them walk, talk, go potty, etc.  Also (not knowing if we are going to have more or not here), it seems to me that subsequent pregnancies would be rather stressful and full of worry that there would be something going wrong , and who knows if we decided to have another sometime down the road I won’t let that deterr our decision, but it will definitely be harder. (if that makes any sense at all.)

So, there you have a long and complicated lesson, but I think I would leave the birth order just the way it is – I think there have been a lot of benefits, both seen and unseen.

2. What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?

I have two: Breyer’s (has to be Breyer’s) Mint Chocolate Chip and Dreyer’s Rocky Road.  Paul introduced me to the deliciousness of Dreyer’s Rocky Road, but the Mint Chocolate Chip stems from my childhood.  It was my father’s favorite and he would often have a carton of it stashed in the freezer.  It was a luxery for us, and so he would get it out after everyone was in bed and eat a few spoonfulls at a time.  I remember feigning bad dreams and restless sleep, sneak quietly up the stairs to the kitchen where I knew dad would be snacking on the icecream.  He’d pop me up on his lap and slip me a few delicious mouthfuls and send me of to bed, savoring the delicious flavor of the best icecream in the world.  In fact, I think the reason it is so good is the memory of those special moments with Dad.

3. If you could be a character in any book which book and which character would you choose?

Yikes! This is a tough one, there are so many awesome books and great characters.  At first I thought of Anne, from Anne of Green Gables because of all the trouble she gets in, but then I realized I don’t necessarily like being in fixes, we just happen to share that commonality. 🙂  So, I chose Eillonwy from The Chronicle of Prydain series by Lloyd Alexander.  She is awesome, grand adventures, battling undead with a sword, you name it she can manage it.  I’ll be her – but the only draw back is that she never sails on a pirate ship – Arrrrr! 🙂 heh.  But she does manage to find true love, so I suppose that makes up for the pirate part – see I can be all girly and swoony sometimes.  🙂
4. Do you have a favorite pen?

I do, and I bet you could never guess what that favorite pen happens to be….

Ages ago Paul got me a cool Goofy pen. It’s metal (rather heavy actually) and blue, with a goofy head at the top. It’s very sheik and I love it.
5. What is your earliest memory from childhood?

I honestly don’t know what is my eariliest memory – the order of things starts to get jumbled as to what happened when, but I suppose one would be a Halloween from when I was about 3 or so.  My brothers and sisters decided to make a haunted housein the garage. On the farm, the garage was separate from the house and was quite huge.  I don’t remember a whole lot. I remember they had a whole lot of decorations and witches and things that would fly down from the ceiling.  But the coolest part was that I got to be the mummy.  They wrapped me all up in toilet paper and laid me in a red sled.  They had attached another red sled on top to make a sort of coffin and when people came by they pulled a string that opened up the top sled and I sat up and moaned.  It was pretty cool – but very vague. In fact sometimes I wonder if really happened, but there are pictures, so I know it must have. 🙂


Filed under Children, Farm Stories, Heart, Meme, Memory, Parenting

Three Songs

Nancy tagged me, and I figured I’d better get going on this before she hunted me down. 🙂  Then the three songs I list really could be my last – heh. 🙂  So, the point of this was to list 3 songs you would listen to if you knew that you would never be able to listen to music again. 

Let me just say that this was super hard.  A lot of you know I am rather odd in my music prefreneces, so many of you might not know these.  It is impossible to pick just three, but I will do my best….

I think one song I would listen to would be “Rhapsody on a theme by Paganini” composed by Rachmaninoff – one of my truly favorite classical pieces (of course that doesn’t narrow it down much, I have about 20+ favorite classical peices, heh).  I’d put a recording of it on here but it is a good 20-30 minutes long. 

My second song would be “I’ve Got A Lovely Bunch of Coconuts” sung by Danny Kaye, because if I’m not going to able to listen to any more music then I’ll want some comedic relief – heh. 🙂

And lastly I would listen to “I Believe There are Angels Among Us” by Alabama because I figure that I’d need to remember that if I couldn’t listen to music because it would be really tough not to have music – becuase that would mean I couldn’t play (most likely, or just not hear what I am playing).  Another reason would be to remind me of all the angels that I have met in my life and have surrounded me through life’s challanges.  I hope I can be such an angel in someone’s life.

 Sorry, no recordings today, youtube didn’t like me :).  So you will just have to put up with yourself singing them in your head – here, let me get you started…

“I’ve got a lovely bunch of coconuts, (deedily dee do)
There they are a standing in a row (bum bum bum)
Big ones small ones, some as big as your head
Give them a twist, a flick of your wrist, that’s what the showman said!
Oh, I’ve got a lovely……” (go on, keep singing, you know you want to)

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Filed under Meme, Music



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I had a hard time choosing, but I finally chose this one. I love the spray comgin off the waves as they roll in – to me they remind me of wild horses’ mane.


Filed under Photography

Jacob’s Mini Surgery

Jacob’s little mini surgery to invistigate the re-occurring pimple that wouldn’t drain on its own along his incision line was today and went really well.  The surgeon (same as performed his actual heart surgery) made a small incision at the top of his previous site.  A small cavity was discovered, though not irritated by any loose wires (from when they wired his chest shut), the surgeon actually didn’t know what caused the cavity/sinus tract, so we were especially glad to get it cleared up.  He cleaned out the tissue in that area down to his sternum, pulled the surrounding tissue together and stitched him back up.  The whole process only took about 45 minutes.  He mentioned that the portion of bone he saw looked really good and firm, and the rest of his sternum felt solid as well.  So, great marks from our surgeon for Jacob.

Recovery went well though it did take a while for his  oxygen to climb up to where it needed to be as he had a cold over the weekend and had gunk in his lungs. It took him one throw up and a number of good hearty coughs before the numbers climbed into the higher 90s where they belonged (they wanted to hang out at 88-90) He is now home and happy playing in the family room with his trucks and sleepy papa.  Now we just need to keep the site clean (maybe an inch long, if even that) and dry for a couple days and watch for signs of infection.  It hurts him some, but doesn’t seem to cause him a lot of pain and he is largely ignoring it.

Here’s our little man hanging out with his new found friend from the hospital after the surgery was over – he’s still a bit out of it.  He chose that dog from the pile of animals and promptly named it “Susie” after our dog at home. I don’t think he has let it out of his sight since. 🙂

Hanging out with his new friend after surgery

Now he is a little more awaking and getting his blood pressure taken while munching on a delicious orange popsicle. You can see that the incision the surgeon had to make this time was very small – this really was a very minor surgery.

Blood pressure and popsicle time!

Of course, minor or not, it doesn’t keep you from stressing out while he is in there. And I can tell you that his numbers not wanting to climb (even though high 80s is considered awesome stats for a lot of heart kids) brought back a lot of uneasy memories and feelings. But as you can see here, there is nothing to worry about now. 🙂

This is good...

So, hooray for Jacob! and now, I am off to take a quick nap before I need to pick up the children and get dinner ready…after all I’ve been up since 4:30 this morning. 🙂

p.s. if there are typos and gross errors I am terribly sorry, and I hope it all makes sense, because I think I am hardly coherent right now….


Filed under CHD, Children, Heart, Jacob, TGA

Real Moms

Gee, I got tagged by two different people on this one April and Sariah in Vancouver– makes me feel special.  Garsh! 🙂  Anyway….

Real Moms act more like kids than adults most of the time (and when they say “oh grow up” they really don’t mean it…) 


Real moms say “Arr! You best be doin’ them dishes or I be splittin’ yer gullet.” (okay, well maybe not, but it is a lot more interesting  than, “is that dishwasher unloaded YET???”) 

I tag Deb, Stephanie, Tracy, Christine, Terri, Awesome Mom, Nancy, and anyone else who wants to play that I forgot to list. 🙂  Tell us what real moms do and post a pic to go with it.  Link back here if you do it, I want to see what you come up with.

P.S. Karen has a portrait of me up on her blog! lol!  🙂 (of course she didn’t post that with me in mind, but I was quite taken aback when I saw the striking resemblance). Okay, I have to quit laughing or I’ll fall off my chair.  heh


Filed under Children, Dot, Em, Jacob, Lizy, Meme, Parenting

Random Friday Post A Day Early

I was all set to do better at writing regularly and keeping up on eveyone’s posts now that everyone was finally well, but then spring hit and I forgot how much time it takes to get the house back in order after everyone has been ill.


This week I have caught up on all the dishes and cleaned out the fridge (ie. the place where food goes to die), caught up on all the mounds and mounds of laundry, did all the typical weekly+ cleaning (bathrooms, kitchen, vaccuum, dust, water plants), unburried and organized our bedroom, and spent as much time in the yard working as kids and weather would permit (which wasn’t much).  Plus I have taught 4 piano lessons, taken Jacob to the doctor (2 yr well child), had two playdates at my house, gone grocery shopping, and costco shopping, and other miscellaneous errands.  So, there are my reasons for neglecting my blog and blog friends (sorry guys). 🙂


Elizabeth also started Softball this week.  She came home from school a couple weeks ago and shoved a bright green flyer into my hand, “Here mom, I’m interested in this.” The flyer was for park and rec softball.  She seldom expresses interest in things so we decided to let her go for it.  Tuesday evening she had her first meeting.  The did a skills clinic for 1 1/2 hours and boy was it chilly.  I shivered as I sat on the metal bleachers waiting for her to finish and the poor kid’s hands were frozen and bright red when she was done.  But she had a lot of fun.  She is definitely not the best kid out there, but neither is she the worst, and we’ll practice with her lots at home.  Paul is so excited. (I am too, but I think most dads are normally even more excited about playing sports with their kids than most moms are).  Once regular practices and games start I’ll be sure to post pictures of my little softball player.  🙂


Jacob’s well-child appointment today confirmed what we already new – that boy is huge!  He is in the 94% for his height and weight – one solid chunk of a two year old that kid. 🙂  He proved to be not quite as well as we hoped however.  The cough he had during the nasty cold a while back is persisting and now sounding worse.  The ped thought his lungs sounded rather hoarse and with Jacob’s procedure scheduled for Tuesday decided to perscribe him antibiotics to head things off just in case they got worse.  Typically he does do that, but circumstances being what they are, he went ahead with it, just in case it wasn’t just a cold.  Other than that though he is a healthy thriving, VERY active boy. 🙂


Potty training progress:  He will go potty just about every time we sit him on the pot.  He did one little stinky once, other than that he just tinkles every time.  Today he even told me he had to go “Stinky” (his word for everything at the moment) then he went to the toilet whacked the lid and started trying to undo his overalls.  So I hurried and got him situated and sure enough he went water in the toilet.  I’m so proud of my big boy. Not to mention estatic, I have never had any of my kids show interest in potty training this early, let alone actually making progress with it.  I’m still not holding my breath and figure we’ll be well into the summer before anything becomes official (if even then), but still the thought of no diapers in the house is just excitement beyond words. 🙂


Oh, I think I mentioned above – we have Jacob’s procedure to take care of the re-occuring pimple along his incision line scheduled for this coming Tuesday.  It’s supposed to be very minor, though they do have to sedate him for it.  Lucky us, we get to be there at 6:00 a.m. which means leaving home at 5:00 a.m.   I just know you are all jealous that I get to wake up at 4:15 in the morning for this one. 🙂  The girls are excited though because they get to each spen the night at someone’s house.  What excitement and adventure! 

I do have a favor  to ask though.  Will you all please pray that whatever this cold thing that Jacob has will not interfere with Tuesday’s appt? We really don’t want to have to reschedule it, and would sure appreciate the prayers.  Thanks. 🙂


Filed under Children, Every Day Life, Heart, Jacob, Lizy

They Call me Chipmunk

*This post is inspired by Karen’s ant pancake

All through middle school I had the same science teacher.  He was the best science teacher I ever remember having.  He was funny and challenging, and especially fair.  I went back to visit him for years after I left the 8th grade, at least once a year I would pop in at the end of the last day and he would call me “chipmunk”, the nickname he adopted for me during my 8th grade year.  I even went back after I had kids and introduced them to him.  He is retired now, but I still see him from time to time.  It is amazing how a great teacher can impact a person’s life.

The event that triggered my nickname occured toward the end of my middle school years.  I was sitting at the long black table surrounded by my fellow classmates…

“What is in there?” a girl leaned close and whispered to me eyeing the terranium sitting on the table at the front of the class.

“Looks like crickets,” I whispered back.

I chuckled to myself as the girl shuddered and said something about crickets being gross.  “How could a cricket be gross?” I wondered to myself, and thought about how fascinating I found them.

“I have an extra credit project for you today,” the teacher announced.  Ears suddenly perked up.  While we all loved our teacher he definitely was not easy and you had to work hard in his class – extra credit was always a welcomed boost in his class.

“Crickets and other insects have been a major food source to many over the centuries.”

We eyed each other – half excited and half being filled with dread, not to metion those who were grossed out with the mere thought of eating bugs.

“The extra credit will go as follows: you will get 20 pts if you eat the cricket completely – chew it up, swallow it, the whole bit. 15 pts if you chew it up and spit it out. 10 pts if you at least bite it in half, and 5 points if you hold it in your mouth for at least 5-10 seconds.”

A chorus of ewws arose from most of the girls, while the boys were nodding their heads determined not to show us how grossed out they were.  The thought of holding the cricket in your mouth with it jumping around in there was much more terrible to me than eating the thing.

After a moment of tension – excited, nervous, and shocked – the first boy stood up to obtain his extra credit.  He did pretty well devouring the little devil and then took off like a shot to the water fountain. After a short time about 3 or 4 boys had eat crickets (or tried to eat crickets – I almost felt sorry for those in the first row having to dodge flying cricket guts if a person couldn’t get it all the way down the hatch.)

“I can’t let the boys get all the glory.  Girls are just as daring,” I thought to myself as I found myself rising out of my chair and walking up to the front of the class.  My nerves were jumping just as much as the crickets in the cage.  My teacher scooped one out and plunked it in my hand.

To my dismay the cricket promptly hopped out of my hand and started to make its way hopping across the table.  My nerves made me even more awkward as I tried to recapture my afternoon snack.  Finally I had it in my hands.  I could feel it whacking against my palms trying to free itself from its fleshy cage.  Without thinking about it any further I popped it in and began to chew like a wild woman.  It was rather salty – and crunchy. I managed to gulp it all the way down and dove frantically for the water fountain.

“You chewed so fast, you looked like a chipmunk!” my teacher chuckled, myself and the class joining in.  The nickname stuck, but I didn’t mind.  After my infamous cricket eating a few more girls were brave enough though only one other was able to obtain the full 20 pts.

Needless to say, I can’t stand crickets today.  They completely gross me out, and just writing about this was making my insides squirm.  I have found I am not nearly as brave and wreckless as I was in my youth.  Sometimes that is a good thing, but sometimes I kind of miss those daring days. 🙂


Filed under Humor, Memory, Youth

Spring is Springing

Last week I posted photos of some of our first daffodils and crocuses and the kids playing in the park.  This morning I can’t resist, as the the sun rises and the first rays streem through my office window (nearly blinding me in the eye, heh) to post some of the photos I took yesterday.  We have more of our unique daffies blooming now and our ornamental plum trees are in full bloom. For those of you still in full winter, I am sorry if this makes you to jealous…I suppose you can always live vicariously through my photos.  heh 😉

Yellow and orange daffodil

Yellow and orange daffodil close up

White frill daffodil 2

white and orange faffodil

This next daffoldil is my absolute favorite. Last spring, before I had entered the digital camera world, I desperately wanted to post a photo of it when I wrote this post.

Frilly Daffodil 2

And now for one of my favorite features of spring:

Ornamental Plum Tree 5

Ornamental Plum Tree 10

Ornamental Plum Tree 4

Ornamental Plum Tree 1

Happy Spring Everyone!


Filed under Every Day Life, Nature, Photography

Adventures in Shoes

I have owned and loved the same pair of black clog-type shoes for at least four+ years.  They were well broken in, casual, and yet dressy at the same time (though not dressy enough for a dress, slacks and things though did great with them). 

 I slipped my feet into them Tuesday morning before we took off to the cardiologist and thought, sadly, that I felt them wearing through a bit.  I thought nothing more about it until we were on our way home.  Paul was driving and I was in the passenger seat.  I moved my foot and felt it pinch a bit, which was rather odd.  I took of the shoe and to my amazement they were so worn that they had finally torn all the way through the sole.  The rip started at the side and went about halfway across the shoe.  I was amazed I had never noticed.  So it was new shoe time for me.  Again I was going for that casual look that was dressy enough to look good with slacks, etc.  I decided to be brave and go with something a little different than the typical almost flat, loafer look I usually go for.  I found these on a great sale:

New Black Shoes

On closer inspection of my brown shoes, which I’ve owned just about the same ammount of time, I found a similar problem occuring and so replaced those as well when I found these on sale.  They are somewhat similar to the black shoes, and I thought they were super cute.

New brown shoes

So for a person who has never carried much interest in shoes (dare I admit that), or maybe I should just say for a shoe geek (ie. someone who knows nothing about shoes), how did I do?

Oh, and Karen, help! I found these terribly difficult to photograph and finally settled on the red background for lack of anything else that was working (arranging them was terrible too). I’m not sure I like the way they turned out. Any suggestions? (the rest of you can give suggestions too) 🙂


Filed under Every Day Life, Photography

Elizabeth’s New Theme Song

“All I want for Christmas are my two front teeth, my two front teeth, my two front teeth.  All I wat for Christmas are my two front theeth, then I can learn to whistle…”

Lizard's new smile

It’s also great to hear her try to say Mississippi: “Mithithippi”



Filed under Children, Lizy