Wednesday, August 29, 2012


How can she be 10? 10! My baby, my angel, our Lily is 10. Wowzers!
We started celebrating on Saturday with nearly 60 of Lily's closest friends. Our house is under 2,000 sq ft. :)
We swam, we bounced, we ate. I like to think a good time was had by all!
We invited Lily's friends, most she has known since she was less than a year old and some new ones as well. We had family, our friends who are like family and well... a house full! Approx 30 kids and their wranglers. It was a great time. Next time we have a party we will be in a much bigger and frankly boring house. One where people aren't crammed next to each other forcing conversation upon each other :) I like our small house and know I will really miss it when we move come November.

My laptop is on her way to hospice and the amount of time it took to upload just this one photo tells me that this will be the only photo I upload. But I am uploading to flickr so cuise on over there if you must see the party of all parties where the mom hardly took any photos. Hey I was busy.

Lily's actual day was Tuesday the 28th and she had a half day at school, when she got home we all went swimming and later had more cake.

I could write all about these past 10 years, but I have done that a lot. I could share my hurt each birthday, but I don't want to. I just want to say Lily is an angel. She is a gift. She is the best teacher I will ever know. We are blessed to get to share each day with her and I am beyond the moon being given the opportunity to being her mama.
If can't see God in the beauty that is Lily, than you need to change the way you see.
Happy Birthday Lily! Praying for many, many, MANY more happy days with you!

Love you!

Monday, August 27, 2012

A Different View

Life has been a tangled mess leaving me feeling unable to stop and able to take a full deep breath. First Lily ran out of her medication, and no one was working with me to resolve the issue. It was one of the perfect storms of disaster where a number of things weren't done and the end result was Lily off a med she has been on for YEARS, cold turkey. It was a ROUGH two weeks. And me in all my non confrontational ways was on the phone with hands shaking and yelling at someone who finally tired of me and got meds from Maryland to my door step in Chandler, AZ in less than 12 hours. I'd hate to see that bill. It was something that never should have happened. She was also out of diapers. I was never home long enough to be able to do laundry and everyone (with the exception of me and a victoria secrets problem) out of underwear. I figure if everyone bought underwear like I did, I really could do laundry a lot less often. Then add my responsibilities I carry as an employee, a wife, the one who is trying to get everything on everything about anything I have ever done in my life and add the paper trail to the underwriter for the loan for the new house, a board member, a friend, a MOM, hello. I was wrecked. So in over my head. The thoughts of everything I had to do and the actual time I had to do those things didn't match up. And I also felt when you have a million things to do nothing is good. It's all crap because your focus isn't on any one thing. It is a not a good feeling to realize everything you are supposed to do is going to crap. So I had a poor me moment. And although I really am not a "list" person per se like for my daily activities, I am learning nothing is impossible if I just list it out. Put them in by priority and I can only look at one thing at a time. If I see the whole list, forgetaboutit, but one by one I can do it. Like one day at a time. I totally get that whole mantra.
But we all have our days, weeks, months, when life gets overwhelming. I know I am not unique in this. I just hate who I become when I can't handle it. I'm trying to take care of one thing and this other thing is like "look at me, look at me" and I ignore one for the other. I am so focused on worry about Lily and her ending up in the hospital over missing her medication that I am like on pin prick away from deflating all over the house.
Just last week our pastor made mention about watching our kids when the whole "watch me" is insisted upon. And I am not kidding, I can be in the middle of feeding Lily and hear out of two mouths "watch me mom" "watch ME mom". I look and they are doing a flip from the padded ottoman to the padded couch. I wonder what am I supposed to say, yay you didn't break your neck this time. But after hearing that from the pastor and I know he said a whole lot of other things but I obviously was convicted on this one point because it is all I can remember. Watch me. Watch me. Watch ME. And I do. I watch, then look away and am scolded to watch it again. And in that moment I realize I am annoyed and want to fold my laundry, do the dishes, feed Lily, whatever task I am doing more than watch Oliver take a car and wind it back and watch it move forward. But feeling this conviction I have been trying to take more notice. I make sure my eyes are on his when he looks up to see if I am indeed watching him and the smile on his face, the satisfaction of being seen if worth those seconds I would have folded a towel in. And this just had to be the one thing I am working on when I take Lily to the eye Doc and see in front of my own eyes another mom go through this issue. A beautiful young mom sits with her two boys in the waiting room, her one son has his hair gelled to perfection with his stylish outfit plays with a truck, her other son, equally as handsome and dressed for success had his arms missing from elbow on and his legs from knee on. The little guy pointed as he knew how to a toy across the room and a little girl brought it to him without a second of doubt. The mom sat with her son as she tries to help him maneuver this new toy. They are working hard as I see her other son saying "mire mama" "mama" "mire" he must have said in spanish look mom at least 5 times. And she never looked. Never. And I am NOT getting down on this mom. I am not. I have been this mom. I have not looked. I have probably not even heard the request. But I saw the hurt on this precious boys eyes and I saw Oliver. I saw Andi Jane. I saw hurt eyes who want their mom to see something important to them. I was crushed watching this. I wanted to tell her to look at her son, but what right did I have to do so? I just sat there sad. I realized this was a learning moment for myself. I actually got an outside view of my inside and I didn't like it and now I know what I have to do to right it. I will watch. I will see what is important to them.
I know it isn't easy being a sibling to a special needs child. I have to remember each and everyone of them is their own sweet person and I have to remember that they need us. They need US to see what is important to THEM.
But I did tell them if I watch them break their arm doing flips off the couch, I am not taking them to the hospital.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

hE mAkEs BeAuTiFuL tHiNgS

My good friend Codi came by on Saturday with her camera :)
Here is the outcome:

I sat in tears as I looked at these images and listened to "You make beautiful things" on the radio. He indeed makes beautiful things. The MOST beautiful things. I can get upset at the unfairness of it all at times, but one look at these images. Those blue eyes, those perfect lips and I realize God has his hands in everything at all times. No mistakes are ever made and every life is precious.
Thank you God for giving us some of the most challenging and rewarding 10 years ever. Thank you for blessing us with the gift of being parents and being the parents to these 3 beautiful kids. I am just feeling so blessed. Thank you Codi! You couldn't have possibly captured her any more perfectly!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

It's the stuff that make memories

I wanted to share our weekend we had last weekend in Greer, but have been so busy it almost seems to late to bother. But I am going to anyway. And add some fun photos to boot.
Our family went to visit my parents in Greer last weekend. It was the Kick Ash Bash weekend they started last year after the Wallow Fire almost left Greer nothing but a memory. We went up after Lily's long fitting for new AFO's. I must add to this that Orthotic Specialists is the best, most innovative place ever to get AFO's! Brett and Barb are a husband wife duo that care about each client and keep up with the most current education and they are just so darn sweet! I just love those guys. They are so patient with Andi Jane and Oliver, it was a long appointment, and they really care about Lily. Brett decided to try Lily's AFO's with a heel and she walked so much better! She even stood more firm. It was so amazing to see and we are just waiting for the  ugly shoes to accompany the impossible to fit AFO's to get her wearing them daily. We will also add SPIO when the weather cuts us some slack, possibly in October. Brett really thinks Lily will do better with more pressure on her and help her proprioceptive "issues". I was so impressed by the AFO's, I totally believe him!
So after that appointment we headed up to Greer. A fun little 4 hour drive. Ha. Kids were good. Weather was amazing. Saturday the sun shined and the rain poured. It was a bi-polar weather type of day that us from the valley enjoy. My mom needed some help finishing up these little wooden boats for the boat races on Sunday so my Saturday was spent on the porch making boats. Sitting inside watching Olympics making boats. Making boats.

Andi really wanted to stand with Lily and I got some amazing images from the sweet session. I love these girls. I love Andi's compassion and tender heart and I adore the way Lily loves Andi Jane. At times it hurts seeing "typical" sisters interacting, playing, having fun and I wish for my girls that type of relationship, but then we have moments like this that tell me our family is who it is supposed to be. <3 p="p">

The rest of the day, in between boat making, was riding on the Ranger and being silly.

Saturday night we realized Oliver had been playing in the van and locked the keys in it. I needed to run to my parents store and so Andrew and I tried to jimmy the lock. There was a lot of "to the left" "who's left?" "My left? No your left" It was fun. Divorce court fun. The rain started. The sun set. It was a blast. I ran inside to get a towel, I bent down and came up hard on the corner of a cabinet. I hit so hard I saw stars and my head bled. I came back out and finally he hit the unlock button. Sigh. By then it was to late to go to the store and my parents were heading back to the house with what I needed. An Advil and dinner out while my parents watched the kids mended it all back up.
Woke up to a beautiful morning. My parents took Andi and Oli down to the boat races and Andrew and I took Lily to meet everyone in the Ranger. We had not driven the van since we unlocked it, just a note to keep in mind. On the drive the the creek Andrew got stung in the belly by a hornet. His belly was inches away from Lily's arm. He took one for the team because I don't want to know how Lily would have felt about that. The boat races was fun. Oliver had two boats make it to the semi finals and Andrew, Andi Jane and Oliver had the fun job of catching the boats.

Grandpa and Oliver

Lily had the job of catching butterflies. Poor girl had a seizure and slept the day away.

After all that fun we had to get going, we had a group to meet up with back at home at 5pm so we get to the van, get all loaded up and..... the battery was D-E-A-D. Yuppers. Oliver left the auxiliary button switched. Gah. My dad had to jump us, it took way too long. We were to late to make our group. But we had some Chinese food and watched the Olympics. And then we all went to bed.

And this is how Monday started for Oliver.

I loved that weekend. We always love our times in Greer, but that short weekend had so much happen that made us laugh (in retrospect) and made me think of all the family vacations we had as kids where someone got injured, or scared or made a mess and those end up being our favorite memories of all.

What did Jon and Kate say, It's a crazy life, but it's our life. I totally concur.

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