Friday, February 29, 2008

I have to post today, since I won't be able to post on this day again for four more years.

I know, I haven't been very newsy lately.

Let's see. Went to our doctor in California last week. I guess that means we've had a little improvement (Brady and I, anyway,) since last fall, as neither of us could have made the trip then. We all needed a treatment. Glad to have our usual doctor. I had really wanted to find someone closer (and did quite a bit of nosing around for someone within a 90 minute drive from us,) but you know, with this crazy illness of ours, once we do find a doctor who helps us, it's kind of hard to change while we're midstream, so to speak. We just really like this guy and his straight-forward approach. Not an easy trip for us, but we feel it's worth it.

I think I mentioned new supplements back a few posts. It's slow-going getting on them all and getting up to the doses we need to because we're so... whacked out. But we're getting there and I'm excited. Our doc up north has helped us to know that we do need these things and on-line we have good support in using them. I'm excited for the prospect of this protocol helping us. Hope so.

Erin's had a bummer of a time being sick with a respiratory flu/cold for all but about a week since we returned from our "dream" weekend in Seattle. It has taken its toll on her. The last couple of days I've had this slight sore throat that's been warning me to get some more rest or I'll be in the same boat.

Brady's been able to work on his creating (3D) work a bit lately, which is wonderful. Shows signs of some improvement to have the brain power to do that again. He's liking the computer he built and he's set-up in the kitchen, so I'm never lonely in there anymore. *smile*

Yesterday, I noticed a couple of primroses blooming in our front flower bed. It was "spring-time" in California with blossoms bursting out everywhere - apple and cherry trees, and wildflowers on the green, lush hills. We returned to zebra-striped hills, no longer completely covered in white. Every spring since we've been sick, I've prayed for God to awaken our bodies and bring them back to life as the earth comes alive again. Don't thoughts of spring just make you want to leap?

(The above photo can be purchased at Horse jumping- San Francisco, CA, for yourself or a friend.)

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

My favorite pic from 2007

Inspired by a traveling exhibit at the Cannon Art Gallery in Carlsbad, CA : National Geographic Greatest Portraits, that I was able to see this last weekend, I came home and perused my photos from the last year or two. I wanted to see if I had managed to capture the personality and emotion of any of my subjects.

This photo won hands down. The picture was taken after Erin told Aunt Dorothy that she was the one who had given her the idea to sing at her grandparents' anniversary party (which had just come to a close.)

Aunt Dorothy is my husband's aunt. She lives in Southern California and opens her home to us when we need to go down to see our doctor down there. Aunt Dorothy has the advanced form of macular degeneration and is legally blind, but she still volunteers for a Hospice thrift store steaming clothes two afternoons a week, is on the board for cultural arts planning, goes for walks by herself, and "reads" constantly, thanks to the Braille Society's audio books which are sent directly to her door; plus she travels to all of the family weddings and reunions. She's quite an inspiration.

I'm glad I was able to capture a bit of Aunt Dorothy's love for life and family; along with Erin's (notice the "after performance glow") thankfulness for Aunt Dorothy's constant support.

Friday, February 15, 2008

cool stuff

  • An eagle on a nest on top of a tree yesterday. (From the highway as we passed by, so I didn't see it up close but it was still very cool.)
  • The setting sun while we drove home from the doctor (again, yesterday.) *Wow*
  • Getting to the doctor again, finally. It had been about six weeks since our last visit.
  • A new protocol of supplements to take: thanks to my SCD counselor and our doctor.
  • Cybils awards announced yesterday. Another list of fun books to read. (Erin helped in the making of it.)
  • Frozen cooked fruit put through my Omega Juicer, smoothing it into the texture of ice-cream. (A new way to eat the cooked pears and peaches we froze last summer.)
  • Seussical, the musical. (Erin's auditioning.)
  • Rest for Brady. He's getting some relief from his breathing problems and chest pain. Yippie and praise God!

Thursday, February 07, 2008

My prairie home

'...there was something else here that was not anywhere else. It was an enormous stillness that made you feel still. And when you were still, you could feel great stillness coming closer.
All the little sounds of the blowing grasses and of the horses munching and whooshing in their feedbox..., and even the sound of eating and talking could not touch the enormous silence of this prairie.'
(By the Shores of Silver Lake, Laura Ingalls Wilder's first impression of Dakota Territory.)

The pasture below our house (June 2007,) Rex watches us skate on the stock dam, Thistles in the pasture (Early '80s,) Our barn (Christmas Eve, 2007 - taken by my sister, Vicki.)

Friday, February 01, 2008

Where'd January go?

Other than writing Christmas cards the first week of the month, January had the theme, "Erin's birthday."

We didn't do a lot on her actual birth day besides watch Erin unwrap a few presents. But on the 14th, my mom flew out to help us prepare for the "real" treat. She spent over a week working 12-hour days in my kitchen, not only helping us to get fed each day, but to double the recipe or make something extra to put in the freezer for our trip to Seattle (23rd-27th.) We had food made for the whole five days, plus enough leftovers for the day after we came home. We only went to the grocery store for fresh vegetables, to go with our meals and for juicing, while we were there. All of the preparation was tons of work, but so worth it. I then had the energy to actually "do something" in the afternoons of each of the three days we were there.

Our gift to Erin was the opportunity to go to a book signing of her favorite living author, Shannon Hale. That happened on Thursday. (See Erin's blog for pics and highlights of a very memorable afternoon.) Before the signing, we were able to stop at my sister's nanny job, a modern home recently built in an old part of town by the university. We met the baby she takes care of, but the toddler was having nap-time.

But Erin had more treats coming after meeting her "hero." She planned a Seattle birthday party, inviting the authors and local postergirlz/helpers, of Readergirlz. These gals have been her mentors and friends for over a year, and to meet them in person was another one of her dreams.

Friday, the day after the book signing, Erin and I managed to find enough energy to go shopping in the mall that was across the street from where we were staying. We shopped for some party items, plus Erin found a dress to buy with her grandparents' birthday money. The guys found a place to race electric race-cars, and had 10 minutes of blissful thrills speeding around the track against each other.

Saturday was the day of the birthday party. My mom, sister, and brother-in-law, came a little early to help decorate and prepare for the party. The guys waited around for the authors to come, as Brady had a book he wanted signed by one of them. Then they were off to visit the Flight Museum.

The party was lots of fun, complete with games, birthday cake, and Erin choking everyone up by singing "For Good". One of the authors (Readergirl divas) couldn't make it to the party, as she was at the X-games as part of her book tour. But another diva dialed her up on her cell phone and Erin was able to talk to her. Fun! We all felt so privileged that these super-cool and busy ladies (along with the two teenage daughters of one) were helping Erin to celebrate her 17th birthday.

After the party, the guys called to have us send food along with my mom and sister, (along with our van,) to my sister's house. My brother-in-law offered to treat them to a semi-professional hockey game that night (in walking distance from their condo.) Brady came home still high on adrenaline from the excitement of his day. It was so wonderful to see his eyes lit up with joy as he told us some of the highlights of the museum and game.

We have not only taken one week off from going to treatments, but two, as this week we've gotten 16 or so inches of (more) snow. The town closed down - the first time for the university to ever cancel school because of weather. We're hoping we can get to the doctor's office next week; it's needed, but more snow is predicted. Some people are saying it's the most snow our area has received in 30 years.

It humbles us so very much to know all the efforts put forth by so many to help us have some fun and some time "away" from the everyday rigors of our illness. After all the giving that people did before and during our trip, we came home to a snow-blown driveway, courtesy of a neighbor. We are so very blessed.

Other links: An interview featuring our own, Miss Erin.
A horse picture 'cause it's purty, and it makes me happy ; )