Sunday, October 16, 2016

Charlotte's Web

It's been seven weeks since I fell down and injured my knee. I am ready for things to go back to normal, but that doesn't seem to be happening. What's normal, anyhow? Yesterday I started coming down with a UTI. I have been drinking loads of cranberry juice, so I hope it will go away, but with my knee still being stiff and my frequent trips to the restroom, I stayed home from church today. It's such a shame, as I loathe missing church, but I am grateful that I have this quiet time to reflect on the gospel of Jesus Christ.

I have physical therapy this coming week. I have been waiting so long for this appointment! I hope they will be able to help me with my knee. 

Barkley knows that Tyler is the alpha in our family. He is the only person that Barkley will snuggle up to like this. It is so sweet. :)

I am so thankful for a dedicated husband who leads our family in righteousness. The boys love to see the pictures when Daddy reads scripture stories. 

This little pumpkin got a haircut today! He was so excited about it, that he asked for a picture to be taken. He is growing up! He will be 7 years old soon. #timefliesby

Every Friday evening, we watch a movie together as a family. This weekend, Tyler chose Charlotte's Web. It was a newer version from what I grew up with...and it was done very well. I became emotional a few times throughout the movie - as expected. After the movie, I noticed that Calvin was crying. He said that Charlotte's Web is the saddest movie that he has ever seen. I called him over to me and held him as he continued to sob for 5 more minutes, or so. It was so sad, but such a sweet moment for both of us. Since then, Calvin has mentioned Charlotte's Web frequently. I think it really had an effect on him. Perhaps I will buy him the book for Christmas!

The first morning after Tyler and I were married, he made me an omelet filled with onions, peppers, cheese, and tomatoes. I looked at the plate and said, "Oh...where's mine?" Tyler sweetly said, "This IS yours." I replied with "I just like eggs with cheese." That was the last time that Tyler made omelets for me until this morning. I am happy to say that my tastes have evolved to ham, green onions, peas, AND cheese. I married an angel! #omelets #eternalmarriage

Our green pepper plant has recently decided that it does want to produce green peppers, after all. So, here's our first pepper!

A week ago, one morning Iryna was having a particularly difficult time. She was complaining and whining and yelling and throwing things, etc. I wasn't as patient as I could have been, but the time passed and she got on the bus and went to school. When she came home, she walked right up to me and apologized for the way that she had behaved this morning. I was blown away by this! We both apologized for our behaviors and asked each other for forgiveness. It was so sweet! I am impressed with the progress that Iryna has made throughout the years. She is growing up! Iryna had an MRI this past week to look at her kidneys. She has some issues with urination and the urologist I spoke with said that some people with FASD will have horseshoe-shaped kidneys. I'm not sure what can be done about that, but I am eager to hear the results from it. And speaking of Iryna, here's a fun video of her dancing. This girls brings so much joy in our family:


Sunday, October 09, 2016


It's been six weeks since I fell down in my kitchen. Six weeks of me rearranging all of my appointments and being forced to SLOW DOWN. I started driving short distances this past week. My heels were in serious need of a pedicure, so I drove to have one done. I have to hand it to the gal who worked on me - my feet are now callous-free. And I am so thankful for that!

I have been attending church since I fell, but just for the first hour. My knee can't handle too much walking and our church building is somewhat large. Today I was planning to attend all three hours, with Tyler letting me lean on him as we were to go down the hallways for Sunday School and Relief Society. 

It's been six weeks since I had a proper shower. Sponge baths work, but I have missed an ACTUAL shower! I decided to climb the stairs to the second floor this morning. It was a mistake. Halfway up, my right knee started hurting. After my glorious shower and visiting a floor I haven't seen in 1 1/2 months, I came down the stairs. Oh, my knee hurt more and more with each step down. By the time I got to the first floor again, I took some pain medication. And I was so frustrated with myself. SIX WEEKS and I was finally feeling better. I was ready to do a bit more after being rather patient, or so I thought. Now I am back to wincing when I bend my knee. It's just...disappointing. I thought I was closing in on the end...and now I feel like I just added a few more weeks to my recovery. :(

These boys love chalk almost as much as each other.

There's a part two to this picture. Calvin took Maggie for a walk and it was raining. He accidentally let go of her leash and she ran home. She was soaking wet, so she got up on the porch and rolled around to dry off...she has chalk all over herself now. Ha ha.

Barkley likes to drag his blanket throughout the house and then put it in his mouth. #adorable


Scene: Calvin finished cleaning the downstairs toilet.

Me: Calvin, thank you for cleaning the toilet. I appreciate all that you do for our family. One day you are going to be married and your wife will say that she is the LUCKIEST wife ever, because her husband knows how to clean. And I will tell her that she IS lucky, because you are an amazing boy.
Calvin: Wait...will you even be alive when I get married?


Anna: I know I should be listening...but I'm just not.



Tyler: Why do we want to be honest?
Silas: So we don't get in trouble.

Friday, October 07, 2016

Family Video

My best friend, Sarah, made a video about our family and our upcoming adoption. I hope you enjoy this video. I cry every time I watch it.

To make a donation towards our adoption, click here.

Monday, October 03, 2016

Wonderful weekend

I love General Conference weekend. It's so relaxing and peaceful. Aside from a head cold, it was wonderful. 

Tyler and Barkley snuggling up.

Coloring was a bit hit with the kids.

This girl got a new mandala coloring book (which she loves). And she happily posed for me. Hooray!

Iryna and I had some nice snuggles. 

Calvin and Iryna putting together a HUGE puzzle with Roxy.

We had a little piefest with pumpkin, buttermilk and cherry pies! Anna also made an apple pie with her friend, Briana. 

My cousin, Sean, with his fiance, Roxy, and myself and Tyler. We had a great time chatting and enjoying all of the speakers. The missionaries and Frank joined us all for some sumptuous potato soup and pie. We had 12 people sitting around our large square table. It was the first time it was seating at full capacity! I tried to imagine in my mind how it will look when we bring home our five kids. We are so blessed, that's for certain. 

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Fall is here

I love this time of year. The temperatures are cooling down, the leaves are changing colors, and making crockpot soups are on the menu. When I first wrote, "Fall is here," I had to laugh because I fell down four weeks ago and it's still affecting me. 

My knee is beginning to bend more easily. I am a bit unstable when walking, due to my muscles compensating for my knee. I feel like my knee is mending and that is encouraging. I have my physical therapy evaluation this week, at last! I hope they have good news for me. 

I love wearing yellow. Especially mustard yellow. 

Tyler purchased this lovely toilet seat riser to help my knee out. The fact that I have to have one of these while I am in my 30s is a but embarrassing, but I will admit it is nice and much easier on my knee. 

We are having a repeat of last year in that Calvin is hiding his school lunches instead of eating them. He has hidden them underneath the deck of a neighbor's house, two doors down, and he has hidden them underneath Anna's bed. We are trying to do what we can to figure out why he doesn't want to eat. His GI specialist wants to scope him and see if something isn't right. 

This pup doesn't mind snuggling me while I elevate my poor knee. I love my Maggie Moo. 

Sunday, September 18, 2016

The road to recovery

My knee is still recovering from my fall. It has been three weeks since I fell, and I have another 3 weeks until my knee should be more functional. I wish that I could say that it has improved at lot, but it's still quite tender. I am elevating it like the doctor told me to do. I have an appointment for physical therapy at the end of this month. I spend most of the days in my recliner. I read scriptures, browse Pinterest, help Anna with homeschooling classes, and try to not feel guilty for all of the appointments that I am rescheduling. We recently got a laptop to help with Anna's homeschooling and I plan to try my hand at doing some family history work. 

I have been very blessed to have received such daily love and service from my sweet husband, Tyler. He is so good to me. My children are also very helpful. Friends from church have helped in substituting for my piano calling at church and others have run errands for me. Tyler has picked up the weekly grocery runs and hasn't complained one time. I am beginning to see this recovery as a gift to me. It has caused me to slow down and focus on what is most important. And for that, I am grateful. 

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Back to school

The kids started back to school this week! They are all very excited about their new teachers. I am excited to have a set schedule again! For FHE, we had priesthood blessings to begin a new year. I am so thankful to have the priesthood in our home. 

Anna is beginning 9th grade - my baby is in high school. How did that happen? She is homeschooled again this year and will be learning through the BYU high school online program. She is taking three classes this fall (French 1, English, and Algebra 1) and then will take three more classes in the spring. Anna also began seminary and has adjusted to the early morning schedule with ease. 

Keith is in 6th grade this year - that's right, he's now in middle school! He's growing up! Keith is most excited about riding the bus again. He loves going to school and seems to be enjoying it thus far. Keith is in an L2 class.

Iryna is also in 6th grade. She's in an L1 class and attends the same middle school as Keith. It's so nice to have them both in the same school! Iryna is still quite nervous about going to school. Her teacher called me and said that she wants to work with Iryna on her head bobbing habit. She has been bobbing her head like that for some time. We shall see how it goes!

Calvin is now in 3rd grade. I have no doubt that his earned title of "model student" from his teacher last year will continue into this year. Calvin loves to work hard at school. He says he is enjoying the library visits the most right now. 

Silas is emotional when it comes to school and he flips from loving it to dreading it, sometimes within a five minute period. He is learning to read in 1st grade and seems to like his teacher. He has some fellow classmates that he knows from last year. Apparently, his teacher moved up with her kindergarten class from last year - Silas wasn't in her class last year. Some of the kids moved away and she specifically asked to teach Silas in 1st grade. She has her work cut out for her! Ha ha. Silas is a dear boy and has so many wonderful qualities, but he's quite a handful. I hope he enjoys 1st grade.

This has been me the last week. I went in for my MRI results for my knee and had both good and bad news. The good news is that there are no fractures and no tears = no surgery! The bad news is that I have three bad bruises and it will take up to a month for them to heal. The doctor put in a referral for me to attend physical therapy. I have an appointment, but it's not until the very end of September. :( I am trying to relax and keep my leg elevated as much as possible. I'm going on two weeks of being down for the count. My sweet family has been so kind and Tyler has been very attentive. On Friday, I was watching a talk by Sheri Dew and I remembered something that my good friend, Valerie, has taught me. She said that during a recent trial, she was praying about it. The spirit told her that her trial was a gift from God to help her learn and grow. During the talk, I remembered this idea and I have been trying to view this trial as a gift. I can think of some reasons why it is a gift. When Tyler was deployed, I was stressed and I had to handle everything. It was hard and stressful, but I did it. As the time went by that he was gone, the stress began to mount. When he returned from the Middle East, I thought that all of my stress would melt away...but it didn't. I couldn't understand why I still felt so overwhelmed. I felt like I had to handle everything, even though I knew that Tyler was here to help - and he kept reminding me that he wanted to help. Now that I am having to sit with my leg up for most of the day, I have to be reliant upon my family and friends to help me. Even though I want to be up and doing things, it's also nice to slow down. I think this IS a gift for me, to help me ponder and reflect more upon what is important. I am feeling very blessed and I am thankful for God's plan for me.

Here is one of the many ways that my sweet husband blesses me. We converted the office downstairs into our master bedroom. This way, I don't have to climb any stairs. It has been so nice to sleep in a bed after a week of sleeping on the couch and in the recliner. Tyler is so good to me. <3

Tyler and Anna and I like to play the iPad version of Settlers of Catan. It's much easier and can be played from the convenience of my recliner. 

Barkley is such a big sweetheart. He snuggles up to me and lets me love on him. He's become a member of the family and everyone loves him so much.