Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Baby Girl!


AMAZING!!! This growing baby!! What a miracle... what a blessing. Today I allow myself to take time to just be IN AWE.
I LOVED seeing her move today on the ultrasound. I feel like I am getting to know her!
Merit, Willem, Vance and I all saw this baby girl squirm and kick. She kept moving her little hands up to her face.
I thank God for this growing MIRACLE!

Friday, June 26, 2009

We have all sorts of fun blooms outside and in previous years we see our most blooms in June and then it really tapers off. I have tried to bring lots indoors. And have been on the hunt for funky vases, jars and milk glass.


Crazy about the yellow roses...

I have all this fun yarrow growing in our yard... and now lavendar too!
The dried yarrow makes a fun "gift topping" or can be placed in containers like this... $1 store containers! Can't beat that!
As I work and work at these college courses that have to be finished by June 30th! I TREASURE breaks, flower picking, strawberry picking and runnning out in the yard with the boys kinds of BREAKS!
I want to post pictures from our awesome family weekend last weekend - but I am having some issues with my computer card reader so they aren't yet on my computer. I told myself that can wait till I get more of the course work done for my college classes. Vance keeps telling me " you don't need to get an A on this stuff, just meet your requirements. Well, for each class I have three essays to complete and a lengthy multiple choice test.The essays need to be single spaced, 4 -5 pages. I am having such a difficult time generating enough for an essay that long! Also, I am developing a unit on Fairy Tales that needs to be 8-10 pages long... Last Friday I sent in all of my course work for two five credit classes. I felt pretty good about the product, but my essays were short. I received an email from the college Wednesday afternoon telling me I need to CLOSELY follow the rubric and resubmit my essays! They were too short! SO, my assignment is to E-x-p-a-n-d and resubmit!
My friends have been soo sweet - knowing I am a bit overworked! Marie brought us dinner for tonight! And Maria made us the most delicious strawberry tarts... our dear friends Lissa, Trav and their girls will spend the weekend with us. So, it is time for another hour or two of essay writing then a little vacuuming and floor mopping and I am ready for a visit with friends.
On a side note, Merit has LOVED Vacation Bible School this week. What an awesome program. And Willem is so patient while his mom types away.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

















Vance BBQing over an open fire.





The boys, hauling water out to a dirt project they are heading up. :)








My gardening helper

  • We had a WONDERFUL time in Plain, WA just outside of Leavenworth. We met both of my brothers there, my dad, my two sisters and their kids... it was a fun weekend and the little cousins had a ball! Pictures to come!
  • Merit is in vacation Bible school this week and is LOVING it and I LOVE to hear about it!!
  • I am up to my ears in typing college essays. Right now I am taking a little break from my Early Childhood Ed course. I am waiting for an ESL textbook to arrive so I can start on my last class.
  • I took a couple of breaks from my courses today to work as part of Merit's "pit crew" during his big NASCAR race! Willem makes for a pretty talented pit crew member as well. The neighbors MAY think I am nuts as I pretend to change his tires and fill him up with gas at a hurried, efficient pit stop. :)
  • The boys love being outdoors and Willem's eye/ allergy issues have been better. Thank you for praying!
  • Vance is the BBQing man! I love it.
  • My pregnancy is going well. I love feeling this baby move!
  • Enjoy your week
  • Michele

Thursday, June 18, 2009

BRIGHT, FUN, LOVIN' SUMMER TIME














































Marianne - thanks for bringing your FIVE here for playing and pictures!









Tuesday, June 16, 2009

What can I say? My friends have cute kids.



First, wildflowers to brighten your day...






Photography is a passion of mine. Just fun, entertaining, evolving and relaxing... tomorrow night I have a darling family coming out and an engaged couple. As I get organized, I have to share some cute kids I know.




Mackenzie















Sammy


Luke












Mackenzie

Sunday, June 14, 2009

A little of this and that


Mackenzie and Willem

This picture of Willem and the dandelion boggles my mind. Three weeks ago he could hold one of these, run through a field covered in these or pick me a bundle of wildflowers. Today, he can do none of this. I will be so interested to see what the allergist says. Friday Willem's eyes were red, itchy and puffy. His left one was almost puffed shut. We had a rough day. This all started after a walk down to the creek to take our labs swimming. 15 minutes later he couldn't stop rubbing his eyes. Also on Friday, we waited hours for a plumber to get here to fix a broken toilet and then when we tried to go to the park that afternoon, Willem was so itchy and uncomfortable we turned back and went home. :(
Yesterday he had a great day. His eyes looked fine, no allergy issues. The boys and I left for a while while Vance mowed the lawn. When we got home the boys had a water fight and had a blast. We stayed away from the creek and tall grasses and just played in the yard. Now today, Willem is covered in hives! His lower body looks awful. He just took an Aveeno bath and I gave him some allergy medicine. He isn't uncomfortable anymore... I hope it all goes away.






Yellow roses... my mom's favorite...it is
so fun to have a rose bush covered in them.










Boys!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

A beautiful little girl, Mackenzie Reese
















Mackenzie Reese
full of personality
adorable
fashionable
friendly
full of life

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

5,4,3,2,1 Let the LAZY DAYS of summer begin

TODAY is Merit's last day of school. TONIGHT is his kindergarten graduation.
WHERE did this year go? Merit has had a great year! A year of learning and discovery and a year of choosing the RIGHT. I have been impressed with the kind, respectful boy I see. His teachers have told me that he is a good example and a good leader. Thank God.
I LOVE summer. I am soo excited to play "store" on the front yard with my boys, to go for hikes, to go fishing, to pick flowers, to have our own monster truck shows and to PLAY at the waterpark with friends.
I want this summer to be about making memories, loving life and remembering to thank God for the simple pleasures.
Willem's eye/s have me worried. But this issue is also a reminder that our health is precious and I should never take for granted the health of my family. I think he has allergies acting up and I think that it isn't a Horner's Syndrome issue -- but further testing and Drs visits (and prayers) will help us discover more.
I will be finished with my college classes by June 30th~ I will be so excited to have these out of the way, even though it is very fun to freshen up on ed courses. Some of the current research I have done on the art of storytelling and reading/writing workshops I can apply to my boys this summer.
My dad is having a minor procedure done on Friday the 12th to remove a lump from his arm. He does not sound worried about this. ( I HOPE he doesn't care that I am blabbing about this on my blog!) He did tell me that he is supposed to take it easy for the three days following the surgery. On the 19th we will meet up with my family and will spend time that weekend relaxing and playing! I asked my dad if he could possibly hold off the surgery till that Friday so that he could just relax -- he plans to be away from work then anyway, so maybe a good time to recover. He said he considered that, but wanted to be able to wrestle and play with his grandkids so thought that wouldn't be the best idea. I LOVE it that he is prioritizing playing with his grandkids over running equipment and shoveling gravel!
so, don't forget that age-long saying that says something like, "when all is said and done and my time here is over, they won't remember how clean the house was or how much we had in our savings, what they will remember are the times we shared!"

Monday, June 8, 2009

Monday afternoon post


Merit! I can't believe this guy is almost done with kindergarten! What a fun year it has been.


a butterfly on my finger!
Everyone loves fresh basil






Bright and fun
We have had some fun, crazy weather. Thunder and lightning off and on for three days and mini rain storms. It has been really pretty.
Today we went to Doolittle Park -- I'll post some pics of that soon. We were there about an hour and when we left, Willem's eyes really starting acting up. He was rubbing them and soon they were red and puffy... the tears came and he was miserable! I think it is allergies acting up. When we left the park we walked a distance through tall grass with dandelions. I am paying very close attention to what is triggering these eye things. Today it was both eyes, in the past it has been much more his left eye.

Friday, June 5, 2009



cabin cozy






helicopter landing in our front field!

Thursday night our good friend Jeff surprised us and stopped by in a helicopter with a friend as the pilot! It was so fun to see a helicopter land in our front field! Merit and Vance loved their ride! Willem was a little afraid to go so I stayed back with him.




















Willem's eyes have really been giving him trouble. This could be one of three things according to our family Dr who Willem saw this morning: a sinus infection, allergies or a syndrome he was born with. I feel sad seeing him with such blood shot, puffy eyes - especially his left one. We are trying to get to the bottom of what is going on. When he was one he was diagnosed with a condition called Horner's Syndrome. It is a rare condition that affects the nerves to the eye and face. This involves miosis which is a constricted pupil and dilation lag. Sometimes involved with this syndrome there is a drooping upper eyelid, although this hasn't been something we have noticed with Willem. He is seen by an eye doctor and we monitor what is going on that way. It is a very rare syndrome however, with lots of possible causes. We are quite certain he has congenital Horner's. The unfortunate thing is some eye issues are currently present and these may or may not be related to his Horner's Syndrome. He struggles with bright light in the summer when we are outdoors a lot or at the water park.
He had no symptoms through the fall and winter.
Now, he has one eye that is puffy and bloodshot. And it is very irritating for him. My friend Maria came by today and we went for a little walk and clipped some yarrow, when we went back inside Willem's eyes were very red and puffy. This made me think it is allergies.
His sinuses were x-rayed yesterday and the Dr says it could be a sinus infection or allergies that is causing him to be all blocked in there. The air pockets that are typically seen were not. I started him yesterday on 21 days of antibiotics. The Dr will see him again in 20 days, at that point we will see what the medication has done and I will be able to observe more when his eyes give him trouble. Please pray for our little guy! I find myself researching and researching again Horner's syndrome. Wish I could have lunch with an eye dr this weekend!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009