Monday, June 17, 2013

More catch-up...

My grandfather whom I love more than anything on this planet, Sweepie, had triple heart bypass surgery a couple of weeks ago, after going in to the ER for an EKG when he noticed he was having an irregular heartbeat.  That turned out to be PVC, but the EKG showed what could've been some arterial blockage, so they decided to do a heart cath to be sure.  There ended up being three blockages - one pretty major, and the other two problematic but not too terrible - so they scheduled him for triple bypass, after determining that the major blockage couldn't be fixed by a stent.  The surgery went very well, and the doctors said he was doing great for a patient his age (he turned 82 in April), but then he started having stomach pain.  At first it looked like they were going to need to do laproscopic surgery and possibly remove part of the intestine (because they thought part of it may have stopped getting bloodflow altogether, in which case the tissue would've died), which would have been really dangerous for him.  But, they did some type of scan first, and they found out that one of the arteries going to his intestines was really calcified - something that's likely been building up for a while, and may be at the root of a lot of his digestive issues over the last few years.  So, they were able to go in and stent that calcified artery and get his intestines the proper bloodflow again.  In fact, the doctor said once he heals completely from the heart surgery and from being in the hospital for so long, he'll probably feel like a new man! 

He's home now and recovering slowly.  My stepdad and mom have been staying at my grandparents' house, because my grandmother is still working on regaining her full strength since going through chemo and radiation for breast cancer, so she's not able to help him get up in the middle of the night, or do many of the household things he's always taken care of.  He is still feeling sort of confused when he wakes up in the middle of the night, so they need someone there to help him.  Wesley's also taking care of the lawn, grocery shopping, etc.  It's during times like these that everyone is so grateful that our family all lives fairly close by!  I mean, Mama and Shannon are in Austin, but they have the flexibility with their jobs to come and stay here for as long as they need to.  It's also kind of perfect that, if this had to happen, it happened right at the beginning of summer, so Mama and Shannon don't have to worry about taking their girls to school, or, for Mama, having to take time off suddenly from her job at the school.  The universe really takes care of us. :-)

Josh and I can't wait to go see him, but we're waiting a while longer, until he's stronger and ready for company.  He and Grandmommy are home bodies and pretty much just prefer the company of one another, and the comfort of their routine.  They need to get that familiar feeling back before we all go crowding their house and showering them with love and affection. :-)  That's OUR need to fulfill, not theirs, so it can wait.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Catching Up

I haven't posted anything since January!  Ridiculous. 

Me: Getting ready for our Whole Foods to close and for the new Addison store to open.  Re-focusing on going to school and preparing to sit for the IBLCE boards next summer.  Dreaming about my future lactation consulting practice.  Learning some things about myself and my needs as a parent.  I joined an Attachment Parenting Meetup group, and can't wait for the first get-together next month.  The topic is attachment parenting your 5-to-12-year-old, which is right up my alley, and SO appropos for me right now, and the reason I wanted to find an AP group in the first place.  Now that we've "aged out" of La Leche League (except, of course, I still love being a leader), I have been on the hunt for a new tribe. 

Josh: Getting his skateboard business off the ground.  Also getting ready for our store to relocate to Addison.  Preparing for a trip to Montana at the first of June to help his other sister (they keep abandoning us ;-) ) and her boyfriend move.  Exciting things on the horizon with the business; he has the name and logo picked out.

Micah: Has her first gymnastics meet coming up at the end of May (this is a first for us, but I'm equating it with the ballet recitals Naomi and I participated in when we were kids), and is turning 8 on Tuesday!  WHAT?  Finishing up 2nd grade, loves reading, gymnastics, playing outside with neighborhood kids, playing inside with her Barbies and dolls, and has lost six teeth now. 

Rowan: Finishing up pre-k with some fun spirit day activities from now until the last day (June 6), including a day when he gets to dress up like what he wants to be when he grows up.  He chose policeman.  Pics to come!  Is about to re-start Kung-fu, loves drawing, playing outside with his big sister, and can't wait to go to kindergarten next year and be at the same school as Micah!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

2012 held some pretty rough spots for our family.  Josh's mother passed in July, and his grandmother passed right after we got back from Josh's twin sister Jill's senior art show at MSU last month.  It is just so sad.  She was in her mid-eighties and had lived a long life, but it happened so suddenly that no one got to say goodbye.  I had a special connection with her and will miss her terribly.  It is just extremely rough for this to come so closely on the heels of the death of Josh's mom.  Josh and all his siblings are still reeling from that loss, and really can't cope with much more right now.  Life can be so hard.  But it's really beautiful at the same time.

We had a lovely Christmas this year.  Josh got a gift card to Asel Art Supply, I got some beautiful new clothes and some books, and the kids each got new outdoor rides (a new bike for Micah, and a scooter AND a new bike for Rowan), some games, and fun toys.  Last year our artificial tree broke as we were dismantling it (in *cough* February), so, since we couldn't afford a new one, this year it looked like we were just going to go treeless.  I've always longed for a real tree, but we always assumed it would agitate Josh and Micah's allergies.  Well, this year we tried a little 3 ft. Fraser Fir from work, and it was perfect.  It looked so quaint and beautiful, and neither Josh nor Micah had any allergy problems with it being in the house.  Yay!!  Maybe we'll get the same thing next year!

The kids enjoyed their Christmas break and are back at school now.  Micah has made nothing but straight A's so far this year!  I have been so pleased with how little homework she has, but am pretty sure that will change next year.  Rowan loves his class and his teacher, but has a hard time leaving us some mornings.  Josh and I can't believe he'll be starting Kindergarten in seven months.  He's really excited about being walked to his classroom by his big sister next year.  Micah wants to go horseback riding for her 8th birthday, and Rowan wants his 6th celebration to be at Chuck E. Cheese.

We are awaiting our transfer to the new Addison Whole Foods sometime this year!  I'm still working towards sitting for the IBLCE, and Josh and two partners have started an art collective and hope to be making and selling a product soon.

Here's to a nice, fun, peaceful 2013!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

i just published a couple of blog posts from a while back, and i'd hoped they'd show up with their original dates, but they didn't... so that's confusing.  oh well.  i don't think anyone is reading anymore, anyway.  i don't blame them, i only post every few months!! 

micah is loving gymnastics.  she goes two days a week at heights recreation center in richardson.  last week her teacher came out with the kids when class was over, found me, and let me know that micah is ready to move up to the intermediate class.  i was so excited and proud!  then micah quickly let it be known that she was not interested in the slightest about moving up a level, and that her teacher was "wrong.  I am not ready, mama."  okay then.  i asked her if it was because she didn't want to leave her friends, and she insisted it was because she really does not feel ready.  i feel bad for not believing her, but i honestly think it's because she doesn't like change and new things!  so we'll see what we all decide to do about that.  part of me is like, hey, this is supposed to be fun and engaging physical exercise for her, and if switching classes will make it STOP being that, then what's the point?  but also... i want her to try new things and challenge herself.  lord, where's my parenting manual...

rowan just finished two sessions of karate lessons at the richardson ymca.  he loved it, had so much fun, and looked so cute in his gi!  now he's going to try kung fu at the rec center.  i would love it if his class coincided with micah's gymnastics class, but i don't think there's much chance of that happening...

grandmommy is doing well.  she is taking a two-week break from taxol infusions so the swelling in her legs and feet can have a chance to go down.  her doctors think the edema is a side effect of the taxol, so that's why they want to give her a break.  i don't get to see her often, since her white blood cell count is low and she can't really risk having people around her.  but she sends out email updates to all the ladies in her bible class, and all the folks at church who are praying for her and sweepie, and she always includes the family in the email list. 

we had a wonderful halloween!  micah went as cleopatra again this year, and rowan chose to wear his gi and be a karate kid. :)  our street and immediate neighborhood looked pretty dark, so we walked a couple of blocks up and hit the jackpot.  the neighborhood behind ours is very nice, and has a lot of older folks, and every other house was lit up and decorated.  it felt like a block party.  folks were sitting out on their porches, dads gathered in one yard drinking beer and laughing, kids having an impromptu light saber fight over there... it was marvelous.  i was so happy.  we walked up and down both sides of two streets, and the kids had more candy than we could carry.  we headed home and drove about a mile away to our old across-the-street-neighbor's new home.  he is a halloween fanatic and decorates his yard and house to the n'th degree every year, complete with flashing lights, fog machine, loud, scary music, and he and his friends in elaborate costumes.  he used to put a sign on the corners of our street that advertised the "archery lane haunting."  so fun. :)  so the kids had fun seeing his kids again, and he and josh hung out and chatted for a bit.  then we went home, and the kids engaged in a halloween ritual that i enjoyed, too, as a child: the organizing of the hoard.  they dumped out their bags on the living room floor and sorted all their goodies by type - chocolate with the chocolate, hard candy with the hard candy, and so on.  it was so fun to watch, since i remember LOVING that part as a kid. :)  oh, and we decided on our family theme for the next several years.  we're going to do lord of the rings (josh: aragorn, me: arwen, micah: frodo, rowan: samwise), star wars (josh: obi wan, me: c3po, micah: leia, rowan: yoda), and i love lucy (josh: fred, me: ethel, micah: lucy, rowan: ricky).  the kids are most excited about i love lucy, mostly because they can't wait to dye their hair. :)

let's see, what else... josh's sister katy moved to montana and we really miss her, but got to video chat last night, so that was really fun.  the kids and i went to stay with my mom, papi, and maya in austin weekend before last, and got to see their awesome new house!!  it is beautiful, and their land is so awesome.  the kids literally spent all day outside.  it was wonderful, and i can't wait to go back.  we're looking forward to the holidays and spending even more time with family!

random news/musings

on monday grandmommy got the results of her PET/CAT scans - no cancer, anywhere!!  YAY!!!! :-) :-) :-)  she started chemo this monday.  so far, she feels fine.  she bought a wig; i know i'm going to bawl my eyes out the first time i see her in it...

8:30 seems to be our magic bedtime.  usually goes very smoothly.  rowan had a hard time falling asleep tonight for some reason, though.

my biology class is going well.  my teacher is a bit of a character.  he's from lufkin, tx and tells a lot of stories.  he reminds me so much of my uncle tony.

the celebration of life we held for josh's mom a few weeks ago was lovely.  we showed a slideshow of pictures of her, some of her old friends showed up, and everyone had a nice time talking and reminiscing.  the owners of the generator in garland were so accommodating and wonderful; we are so grateful for them!

a couple of days before the party, i accompanied josh, jill, and kyle (jill's boyfriend) to the funeral home to see susan one last time before she was cremated.  it was unbelievably surreal.  it wasn't exactly cathartic, or necessarily good or helpful in any way.  if i had it to do over, i do not think i would make the same choice.  i don't think josh feels the same way i do.  i think he needed to see his mom one more time.  i, on the other hand, find myself wishing my last memory was of her the last time i saw her alive - normal, smiling... can't change it now, and i don't want to dwell on the negative.  every so often the kids talk about her.  we've tried to make talking about or referring to her very normal and easy.  i've tried not to become overly upset or emotional when they bring her up; i don't want them to think it's taboo.  we have pictures of her around the house.

on a brighter note, the kids start school on monday!  micah's going into the 2nd grade at cooper elementary, the same sweet, little neighborhood school she's been attending since kindergarten.  rowan will be going to the public pre-k in our neighborhood this year.  we absolutely LOVE the private preschool he's attended the past two years, but weren't able to fit it into the budget anymore.  we could've afforded two days a week, but felt he would benefit from the opportunity to get into the swing of going to school every day.  he's such a homebody... i felt like it would've been a big jump for him from two days to five.

both kids had their porch parties at school last night; they got to meet their teachers, see their classrooms, and enjoy some snow cones.  i'm the secretary of the PTA this year so i was in charge of selling keychains in the cafeteria.  josh had to work, and i knew i'd need held with the kids since i had to man a table for part of the time, so i enlisted vesta to come with me.  she was happy to help!  she watched the table and rowie for me while i took micah to her new classroom.  mrs. reynolds is her teacher.  she seems very sweet, and experienced.  cali is in micah's class!  cali is one of micah's best school buddies, so that will be fun.

Monday, August 27, 2012

well, we got the babies off to school safe and sound. :)  micah has started 2nd grade in mrs. reynolds' class, and rowan is at the public pre-k in our neighborhood, in mrs. domingcil's class, afternoon program from 12:15 to 3:10.  they were both so excited when they woke up this morning!  and, they woke up at 6:30 on the nose, on their own.  so nice.  we had a lovely, relaxed morning.  we got micah to school at about 7:45, walked her into her classroom, and stood with her while she found her numbered hook for her backpack.  she looked a little anxious, but even less than at the beginning of 1st grade, and WAY better than Kindergarten.  she sat down at her desk, we gave her a squeeze and said, "i love you!" and headed out the door.  we played with rowan and snacked at home until it was time to take him to school.  we walked him in, showed him which way to go (mostly, he showed us), helped him find his cubby to put his backpack, and walked him into his classroom.  he waved hello to his teachers (mrs. domingcil and her assistant, ms. garlow), then mrs. domingcil asked him if he wanted to pick a chair to sit in.  we kissed him, he sat down, he said "i love you" in sign language to us, and we left!

i had inventory at work last night, so josh put the kids to bed.  he usually doesn't like to read out loud, but it's such a part of their nighttime routine with me that they have a hard time falling asleep without it. so josh, sweet daddy that he is, read harry potter to them until they fell asleep - which took hardly any time at all.  we took them on a nature hike yesterday morning, and they rode bikes out front after that, so they were pretty tired.  i was so happy they were asleep when i got home after 10 last night.  when i got home, josh and i watched american handyman and i made buried treasure muffins for the kids for breakfast.  we stayed up way too late...

this morning i made the kids scrambled eggs and bacon, but neither of them ate very much.  they drank ovaltine, though.  micah took her lunch -  half a pb&j on wheat, baby carrots w/ italian dressing for dipping, an apple, a juice pouch, and cheez-its.

i can't to go pick them up and find out how their first day went!!