Wednesday, April 30, 2008

It would have been impossible...

Many of our friends and family kept telling us not to get pregnant in Hawaii.

Since #1 told the entire kindergarten class and most of our family knows I figured it was time to let Kris off the hook.

Happiness is a journey...

Life is full of lots of unexpected little surprises...and some pretty big ones, too.

I had my ultrasound done in February as the doctor requested. As usual, I was feeling rushed I needed to get back to town to pick up the kids from school and just wanted to get this over and done with. The scan required a full bladder and I was so uncomfortable on the long interstate ride in that I prayed for the urge to go away so that I could have a good scan. I failed and stopped at a gas station to pee before I even made it to the hospital. I felt awful. Good thing I drink a ton of water and my bladder was plenty full by the time of the scan.

#3 was with me because dad was working and she was sleeping, I secretly hoped she would stay that way for the 30 minute ordeal.

The technician called me in and she saw how uncomfortable I was so she did the outside scan first with that hot petroleum jelly. I was glad when it was over and I was able to pee again.

Then came the internal part, icky. Of course the baby started crying as soon as we got started and I told the tech to take her time and ignore the baby. She seemed flustered and at one point stopped the scan to put the pacifier in #3's mouth. It didn't help.

After she was finished I hurriedly got dressed and fed the baby a bottle. The tech came in and said she was getting a second opinion and could I wait. I called my dh and told him that something was going on. They usually just send me home and call me with the results. Then the tech came in one final time and told me that I needed to go to my doctors office. I tried to stay as calm as I could but my heart was racing and my throat was closing up. I called my dh and asked him to come with me. We talked in a whisper on the way to the doctor's office. What if? What if? We talked about options, a total hysterectomy to avoid chemo and radiation. We talked about regretting not having more babies when we were healthy. It was a long drive across town.

When we got the clinic we checked in and waited. Both of us ignoring the obvious and instead fussing over the baby. After we were called back into the room the nurse took my blood pressure (which was amazingly normal) and my temperature. Then we had to wait again for the doctor. Dh held the baby while I sat in the chair with my head in my hands. All of a sudden I had a tremendous headache. My temples were pounding and I felt like I was going to throw up.

When the doctor came in he immediately sat down on the little stool and said, "I don't know how to tell you this, but..."

My whole life flashed before my eyes. My babies, my husband, my could I put everyone through this again. Why was this happening? I felt light headed.

Then the words actually entered my ears..."you're pregnant"

I looked at my husband and a huge grin came across his face.

"Everything normal as far as we can see..." the doctors lips were still moving but I couldn't hear the words anymore.

Another baby. Quick calculations in my head came up with the same due date as #3 only one year later. YIKES! Things have not been exactly lovey dovey around here if you know what I mean. I am the poster child for "it only takes once". Call me Myrtle, I guess. Dh is batting "a thousand".

Finally, I spoke,"I guess I am fertile then..." The doctor laughed and said, "There is no question about that."

The PET scan could have posed a small risk, but because I was barely pregnant they are reassuring us that the risk is minute.

We are, of course, in complete shock but at the same time know that God has a plan for our life.

Miracles are happening all the time around here. We are getting quite used to them.

God is so good.


p.s. flying is not fun when you are pregnant; can you say 'refuse bag'?

we're back

tired, sunburned and refreshed...

thank goodness the hotel in Kauai had no free wireless...

it'll take me weeks to catch up on everything...

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Traveling light...

I find it quite odd that the night before we left several light bulbs burned out in our home. Then as we were leaving for the airport we noticed the headlight on dh’s car was out. I mentioned it to my mother and asked her what she thought about the lack of light in our life currently, but she reminded me that God’s love will never leave us in the dark.

There was a small child probably a little older than # 3 on our flight to Denver. She was a cutie. It made me think of my own babies and how lucky I am to be a mommy.

The Rocky Mountains are amazing. As exhausted as we were we couldn’t sleep as we were flying over the ridge. We were at 36,000 feet and the ground felt and looked really close. The snow capped peaks were unreal. When we were completely over the range the ground was barely visible.

We gained an hour on the trip to Denver. By the end of today we will have added 2 extra hours onto an already long day. Not having a watch is driving dh bonkers. He keeps asking me what time it is as if I have some sort of intuition of time zones or something. First purchase of unnecessary item will be a watch. Dh has been listening to the chatter of the pilots on the radio channel and he keeps loudly telling me useless information like the air traffic is really busy right now and there’s a plane flying right over us. Like I really want to know all that.

The plane toilet was an experience. It smelled like a portapotty. My tennis shoes stuck to the floor and I had to listen to the sound of them peeling off some sticky substance every time I moved. Which, by the way, wasn’t much. There isn’t a lot of room to turn around in there. I managed to figure out how to flush the toilet but couldn’t understand how to drain my soapy water from the sink. Oh well, I could have left something worse for the next person…

The weather has been great for flying. The sun is shining so much we have pulled the shades so we can have some shade to nap in. Combined hours of sleep between the two of us last night was less than 5 hours. It will be an extra long day.

We called Grandma at the Denver airport and we talked to #2. He was really excited that we rode on a plane and kept asking what else we did. I told him about how daddy was randomly chosen to be frisked by security and I heard him tell Grandma. “Daddy had to go through a special medical detector.”

The actual flying part leaves much to be desired. The seats are really close together and with the laptop dh has no leg room. I, being the more stout one of us, feel like I have no elbow room. The first flight we had an empty seat next to us. The second one a quiet lady sat and read her American Buddhist Women binder while I tried to sleep. I think she was chanting and humming most of the trip.

When we landed in Oakland it felt like we were gonna put our wheels down in the water, but as the last minute the land appeared under the wings of the plane and my faith in the woman captain reappeared.
The hotel here is nothing fancy but they have free WIFI and every room has a door outside, heck the ice machine is outside. That is weird. We took an elevator to our 3rd floor room and the elevator was outside…

We took a walk around the neighborhood. We admired some nasty graffiti and a few shopping carts full of items before we decided perhaps we would just cough up the cash and call a shuttle for transportation instead of taking the pubic BART train. Although the thought of a train that takes you underwater to the San Francisco Airport did intrigue us. I think we’ll play it safe and pay the man to carry our luggage instead of dragging it three blocks to the bus stop in a neighborhood that may not be agreeable.

The Coliseum is sort of in the middle of a train station a used car lot and lots of industrial business. In Kansas City we walked across the parking lot to enter the stadium. Here there are 2 gated entrances and everything is all fenced in.

Just got off the phone with my children and I almost lost it. Just over 12 hours into the journey and I am already homesick. Grandma is getting along fine without me. My son thinks it’s so cool that we are going to a ballgame. I can’t help thinking how much fun the kids would have seeing the ocean.

Tomorrow we will be in Hawaii.

I do my best thinking...

It's five minutes after three a.m. and at the moment and I am wide awake. I shouldn't be but I am.

The night before always gets me. I think I am obviously an anxious person and my brain has a hard time shutting off before and after big events.

This definitely qualifies.

The last time we left the kids for more than a few hours was when #2 was a little over 6 months old. I think I was up all night that night, too. This time we are gone for twice as long and a lot further away.

I checked the weather in Oakland. The high for today is 52 with a 60 percent chance of rain. Sioux Falls has a forecast of 66 degrees. It will be warmer in my backyard then in California today. Figures.

The weather in Kauai will be in the 80's with a chance of rain, too. That will be nice, if we ever get there. There's a lack of transportation from our hotel to the airport in San Francisco. We had a shuttle option until we had to change airlines when Aloha went bankrupt. I have faith we'll make it, even if we have to break the bank with a 25 mile taxi ride.

My saint of a mother-in-law arrived last night. She is taking the bulk of the child care with my mom helping out for the weekend. They both brought us anniversary cards. I forgot it was our anniversary.

I guess my mil isn't too scared yet as she is still here.

I guess that means we are going through with it.

We have been doing a lot of walking by faith these last couple of years and no doubt this trip will be more of the same. My husband is the kind of vacationer who like to be up and moving ALL THE TIME. I am the type who could sit on my rump for days. I have complete faith in my husband that we can come to a happy medium and not hike every trail we come upon.

I told #1 that I wouldn't see her this morning as we are taking off before 4ish to get to the bil's and have him drive us to the airport to catch a 645 flight. I think I forgot to tell #2. Just like I forgot to take a picture of him for 4 years.

The baby was wide awake a little bit later than usual as if she knew there was a change a coming. I have faith that she will remember who I am in nine days.

The husband is awake now and I have to get a moving. If you have a minute today, pray for our safety and my mil's sanity.


Saturday, April 19, 2008


What would I have to do to convince one of you apron sewing miracle workers to make me this? I spend a lot of time hanging clothes out this time of year and this would make it so much easier. I may even have some fabric scraps for you if that sweetens the pot?

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Thursday, April 17, 2008

how in the world did we ever get married...

while organizing things for the trip I have;

shopped my bff's closet (love you K!)
shopped online
shopped clearance racks

dh has;

brought home his old worn-out hospital 'comfy' (read; stinky) shoes to wear hiking
dug through the summer box for shorts

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Great Expectations

Seven days and counting.

Yesterday in a whirlwind of appointments during my 'I only get to the big town once a month I better get everything done' day, I met with the travel agent to finalize all the details of our Hawaii trip. We had a few last minute changes since our island airline is no longer servicing planes. Alas, all is well and we are anticipating a nice vacation.

The hubby and I actually snuck away on Sunday afternoon, too. We caught a cheap movie and had theater popcorn and snacks for supper. It was good to get some alone time.

I was thinking about how much I am longing for a nice vacation. I worry to much about what ifs and it would be so nice to just be able to sit back and relax.

Reminds me of the promise of God's goodness.

Isaiah 30:18 And therefore the Lord waits to be gracious to you; and therefore He lifts Himself up, that He may have mercy on you and show loving-kindness to you. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all those who wait for Him, who expect and look and long for Him!

Things may not always turn out the way you want them to, but even in disappointing times there is still reason to HOPE!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

First Look

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blame it on the rain/snow...

Remember Milli Vanilli? I didn't have too many secular music choices in my music library when I was a teen. But I had Milli; the infamous lip-sync'ers...I sure know how to choose them.

The weather is wreaking havoc on my life.

Just as I am about to go nutzo the sun comes out and I forget about all my cares and woes and then as quick as it appeared it's gone and I am lost again.

I am supposed to be packing summer clothing for our trip. But when I am wearing three layers daily and still wrapping myself in blankets when I sit down it makes it hard to visualize wearing a swimsuit.

The weather man is predicting the big one for tonight and tomorrow and I am less than thrilled. It just dried up for crying out loud. I am tired of muddy boots and wet snow pants. I am tired of cold drafts and wind that can knock even me over. Come on Spring!

Normally my husband is the one who suffers the most from this seasonal thing. But this year I don't even want to get dressed in the morning. Thank goodness my frizzy hair is long enough for a pony because that is a staple these days.

I have a slight urge to get a pedicure before the trip, but that would require me leaving the house. Which probably won't happen because...

I am a hermit.

Yesterday I took the kids to school for picture day. I figured since the last professional picture I have of #2 is when he is barely a month old, it was time. I made the entire school (okay two elementary classes but it was a lot of kids) wait for my kids to get the perfect shot (actually I just wanted all three of them to be facing the camera). It took almost 15 minutes. It felt like a lifetime. I hate photo shoots. The perfect shot will never be taken. I don't know why I even get my hopes up. #3 never even cried. She is frightened by anyone who says 'hi' to her but she just stared at the photographer. No smile, but no tears. I suppose it was a success. This is my first child with stranger anxiety. My other two grew up when I was managing the city daycare and they were comfortable with chaos. #3 likes kids but adults are a different story. Grandma has this idea that if she visits often #3 will warm up to her. So far it hasn't worked. She is better in the morning though. Mental note: plan all outings for before lunch.

#3 does like the outside though. Last night her and her sister and her brother sat and watched daddy grill pork loin (note previous post). It was quite cold by evening but she loved being outdoors. Probably because I have kept her locked up like a hermit for 5 months.

It doesn't help that dh has been working harder than I can ever remember. I only see him once a week or so and unfortunately we usually end up getting into a disagreement over something stupid.

More depressing things...I still haven't filed my amended tax return and the van has been in the shop for over two months. Should I just cancel the insurance? I have no idea what to do. Meanwhile we are squeezing three car seats in the back of vehicles. Perhaps another reason why I don't go out too often.

To make a long rant even longer, I was over a month behind on daily devotions. Where does that time go? I can't even spare 10 minutes to read the Word of God.


Usually, when this happens I 'punish' myself by reading every day that I missed in one day which really backfires because I am a speed reader and miss half of the message I should be soaking in. Because I am exhausted and depressed I just read yesterdays and today and what do you know? It was just what I needed to hear. Way to go, God! I am so blessed to have you pulling for me. I don't deserve it but I am extremely thankful for your grace.

Why Worry?
Cease from anger and forsake wrath;fret not yourself-it tends only to evildoing.
Psalm 37:8

Worry is useless. It accomplishes nothing. Why worry? It only attacks my mind and keeps me from serving the Lord as I should.
And who of you by worrying and being anxious can add one unit of measure to his stature or to the span of his life?
Matthew 6:27

Praying His Will
I will grant whatever you shall ask in My Name. John 14:14

This could be slightly misleading. Does this mean that I will get what I pray for no matter what? Nope. All effective prayer involves praying the will of God, not the will of man. Pray that His perfect will be done though we do not know what that will be.

Maybe you are a bit behind on devotions, too. Maybe these verses will help cleanse your brain and let you see a bit more clearly. I hope you are free of worry and open to the will of the Lord today and everyday. AMEN.

I believe the saying goes..."PEACE OUT"

Monday, April 07, 2008

why I should ONLY shop local...

So the husband had in service today at the hospital. I asked him to please pick up a few things for me. I always regret asking him to pick up things. Here's a tidbit of his shopping venture.

Phone rings.


Hi Honey, you said you needed sour cream. Is 5 lbs enough?

Where are you?

Sam's Club

Oh, my.

Do we need pork loin?

Hello debit.

10 minutes later.

Phone rings.


Do you still need infants tylenol?

No tooth yet.

Are you sure, can't we just buy childrens?

She IS only an infant, do you know how to figure the dosage?

Okay, is 500 paper plates enough?


Friday, April 04, 2008

a few thoughts on my favorite subject, FOOD.

Yesterday I went to eat lunch with the kindergartner. I was astounded by what she ate at the lunch table. Just goes to show you what social eating can do for you. My, I won't touch any egg with a ten foot pole, daughter ate about a half of a cup of hard boiled eggs. I was shocked. I said to her about half way through lunch, "I didn't know you liked eggs, honey?" "These are cold, mom, I like cold eggs." She said as the fluffy white and yellow pieces flew from her lips. I didn't even have a reply.

My son, who is the pickiest eater of all of so far, has been eating me out of house and home. Two days ago he wanted more supper an hour after we ate. Then next morning he had 3 bowls of cereal, two pieces of toast and 4 slices of bacon. I was shocked. Then he had an orange for snack an hour later. Must be a growth spurt?!

The baby has my food quirks. We both have weak stomachs and this morning after her bottle she seemed fussy and I gave her some rice cereal mixed with a tiny bit of apple juice. Her gag reflex made me laugh. I have a terrible gag reflex and my kids make fun of me all the time.

So tonight we plan to use up the book it coupon at Pizza Hut and I am certain to be fooled. It used to be we could get by on a couple of kids personal pans and the salad bar, but I have a feeling tonight may break the bank...

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

The talk around the department was that a few guys were going to shave their heads in support of Gordy's recent surgery to remove a brain tumor. Soon word got out and it spread through those thin hospital walls that there was a head shaving going on to raise some money. Yesterday, while a barber shop choir harmonized in the background, 26 men and two women shed their hair to raise money to help fight cancer. One woman alone with blond hair past her shoulders raised over $1000 to bring the grand total over $8000. That same woman also donated her hair to locks of love!

It sure was a sight to see several doctors trading in their scalpels, anesthetic drugs and scrubs to roll back their sleeves and shave some heads. They took the job seriously and in an hour had 28 heads finished. They better keep their day jobs as they work much too fast to earn any money as hairdressers. There was even one young fellow cancer patient who used two of her hands and the help of her doctor to shave a therapists head.

Before any cutting began a chaplain put out a neon green box and said that anyone who wanted to donate a dollar could step forward and run their hands through the last few moments of full heads of hair. She called it, "Gordy's I'm too sexy for my hair fund" The music was blaring but there were just too many people for everyone to get a last minute touch and money started falling from the three levels of the hospital lobby as generous onlookers watched the event take place.

As each individual head was finished roars from the crowd encouraged more bills to be thrown and collected. Chanting of names and collecting of cash even encouraged a few who came to the event to 'take the plunge' and cut their hair impulsively. Wonder what their wives thought when they arrived home last night?

It was a testament to the true 'family' side of Sanford. People were patting each other on the back and hugging and giving a lot of money in support of a friend. There were current and past employees of the respiratory department. There were lots of other departments represented as well as the media and tons of family. Babies were being passed around the crowd like it was a big reunion. It was pretty spectacular.

I can't help thinking somebody's gonna have a great garden this year with all that discarded hair to help the soil...

Gordy, we love you man. May the support of many follically challenged friends lift you up and give you the strength you need to get through this battle. May as many prayers go up for you as dollars fell down yesterday. God Bless!