Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Date Night

On president's day Lance and I went on an all day date, which was lovely and much needed. First, we started out at a local donut shop for breakfast. Then we drove to Coeur d'Alene to an indoor water park there, it was a blast! I think we concluded that we like that water park better than the other two we've been to here, it is nice being indoors that you don't have to worry about sunburns or sunscreen. We went down all the slides and swam several times, had a break for lunch and did more of the same for a few more hours. I was super tired after we were done but it was worth it, so much fun! We drove back to Spokane and ate at Olive Garden for dinner before returning home.

It was such a nice break from the daily routine!

My Funny Valentines

Happy Valentine's Day!

Kimball wanted his hair spiked up for church, which was the first time he's ever requested that and even though Lance nor I care for the look, I let him go anyway. We actually had a pacific regional conference for church meetings so nobody really saw him anyway. And Cora? I love her ponytail!
 I love everything about these next photos, especially the way the kids interact with each other! These are the little valentine's that the kids got from us. Kimball immediately named his puppy Baxter and they both slept with their new friends that night.

I'm still not a huge fan of valentine's day but its growing on me a little more year after year. It's kind of nice to acknowledge what you love most about life.

Cora's First Ponytail!

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Boredom Buster

The kids have been sick all week, mostly Cora, and we haven't gone to therapy or done anything at all. I have to admit, it's been nice having a small break from therapy but then the challenge of keeping the kids occupied with something different every day comes up. Today we painted with real paint and played balloon toss with "paddles" made of paper plates and a popsicle sticks.

Lesson Excerpt

My calling for the past year is teaching the 15-18 year olds in Sunday school. I've got on average about 10 kids each week, sometimes as many as 15. They are so bright and intuitive and they teach me much more than I'm sure I teach them. They participate really well and we have really, really great discussions. I absolutely love it and it's my favorite calling I've ever had. Like, I really, really, really love it! I've decided I should put a scripture or quote in my journal that I'm using for my lesson each week, this one was from two weeks ago.

“Indeed, the safest road to Hell is the gradual one—the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts.”

“You find out the strength of a wind by trying to walk against it, not by lying down.” 
- C.S. Lewis

Monday, February 8, 2016

Worthy of Our Promised Blessings

"I do not know why we have the many trials that we have, but it is my personal feeling that the reward is so great, so eternal and everlasting, so joyful and beyond our understanding that in that day of reward, we may feel to say to our merciful, loving Father, 'Was that all that was required?' I believe that if we could daily remember and recognize the depth of that love our Heavenly Father and our Savior have for us, we would be willing to do anything to be back in their presence again, surrounded by Their love eternally. What will it matter, dear sisters, what we suffered here if, in the end, those trials are the very things which qualify us for eternal life and exaltation in the kingdom of God with our Father and Savior?"
- Linda S. Reeves

The Plan of Happiness

"'And they lived happily ever after' is never written into the second act. That line belongs in the third act, when the mysteries are solved and everything is put right."
- President Boyd K. Packer

Teamwork: When You Forget the Ladder at the Ag Show

Random Photos

One of the local groceries stores remodeled and they have the cutest little shopping carts for kids, I will say it is a big enticement to go to that store, which is expensive. We only go there for Cora's allergenic free food but when we do Kimball does all the shopping himself. He picks out the stuff (with my help), puts it in the cart, put the food on the conveyor belt to check out and loads the cart back up with our bags. It's great!

 Sometimes these two are like best friends!
This was actually the first time Cora stood on the chair to help me, she's never been too stable on it by herself without me at her side. We made valentine cookies and her favorite part was holding the mixer. Then she did dishes for me and played at the sink for hours.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Ruts and Surgeries

I've been stuck in a rut lately. All of the kid's therapies are driving me crazy, it's an endless task it seems and it's draining. Kimball's speech recently changed to two times a week now which I think will be good for him. I blame the rut on winter. I don't like winter; it's too cold, too wet, too gray, and too dreary! Bah humbug!!!

Ginette spoke with me after Cora's therapy on Monday and explained what they were working on for PT. She mentioned maybe getting her eyes checked for any suspicions about depth perception. I just said ok. Later that night I was trying to fall asleep and replayed Ginette's conversation in my mind. Then it was like a light bulb went off and I started realizing a lot of subtle changes with Cora's movement. She doesn't come down the stairs on her own anymore,  she doesn't get up and down from her chair in the dining room any more, she doesn't get off the bed on her own anymore, she doesn't walk to and from the garage like she used to, any variation in flooring (like a threshold) is just stepping off a cliff for her, etc. I didn't make anything of these findings until Ginette mentioned it so now I'm anxious to hear what the ophthalmologist has to say about it in a few weeks. Cora gets her eye tubes out on the 18th so I'll be ready with my list of questions. The only thing I know is of concern about her vision that hasn't already been corrected is that when she looks into the distance she has one eye that wanders. Only surgery can fix that but hers isn't even noticeable or affecting her. I wonder if that has something to do with her depth perception or not. Hmmm, either way I'm anxious to hear what the ophthalmologist has to say.

Kimball has been like a roller coaster all month long. On the days when it's just him and I while Cora's at therapy he can be the best little pal and we have such a great time together. Other times he's a little whining thing with a big attitude and so ornery. It drives me crazy. I also blame that on winter and being cooped up.

Lance had a great January, his biggest call volume so far of 188. It's so nice to see him happy with work and really enjoying himself!

Our awesome realtor texted me the other day and reminded me of her offer: that she'd come do a tile back splash in our kitchen for free. Initially we waited so that the business could get going but I figured now is a good time to do it. So in the next week or so I'll be shopping for tile! I'm quite excited!

I've also decided to quit answering the phone whenever someone from home calls. It's always bad news. I keep forgetting to journal this so here's the latest on the guys:
  • Dad has been diagnosed with a form of muscular dystrophy. It's genetic it, the same kind that Uncle Gordon and Great Grandpa Stockdale has/had.
  • Dad had a trip to the ER in Arizona during Casey's wedding to have his gall bladder removed in December
  • Grandpa Pettingill had surgery on his foot and has been at a care facility in Burley until the doctor releases him to go back home. It's been over a month now, his foot isn't healing like it should be. According to him he plays cards, bingo, and Wii, "I'm really having quite a blast!" I think he's really missed the social atmosphere being so far away at the cabin and has really enjoyed the care facility.
  • Grandpa Pettingill also needs a hip replacement which will not be done until his foot is healed and some other surgery done but I can't remember what it is.
  • Grandpa Watson now has prostate cancer. He also had some kind of operation on his heart this past week - not a stent but something about going in a neck vein and doing something with the aortic arch. If the procedure isn't successful he'll need a pacemaker. That happened last week and I haven't heard if it was successful or not.
  • Joseph broke his neck! He was playing basketball and some guy rammed into him knocking him to the floor. However, his neck broke before he even hit the floor so it was quite a blow. They took him by ambulance to the ER at which time he was paralyzed. He quickly regained feeling in most of his body although he still has a hand that has no feeling. Two of three doctors suggested that he have surgery on his neck, I haven't heard if he decided to go ahead with that surgery or not.