Wednesday, November 4, 2009

All things Bright and Beautiful

I love the fall season. I love all the beautiful leaves in shades of red, orange and yellow. I love the crisp mornings. I love curling up under a blanket and drinking some hot tea! I love seeing peoples porches and house decorated. I love carving pumpkins. I love seeing all my precious kids dressed in their adorable Halloween costumes. I love the landscape God creates and that He allows us to share in that. I love that it brings about thoughts of being thankful for all our blessings. I love the way this time of year brings families together. I just love it all!
A few weeks ago I had Anaiah all weekend. We had lots of fun reading books, watching Dora, playing on the structure at the mall, finding her Halloween costume, going to the pumpkin patch and just being together! She is so precious and I hope that every time they come back on furlough that I will get that special time with my little niece! She is a precious gift and I want to capture every moment I can with her!

The weekend after that, it was Halloween. I had an awesome and amazing day! I started the day off with some coffee and then going to watch Alyssa's soccer game. It poured lots of rain, but it was worth it to watch her play! She is an aggressive little thing and gets the job done. It was her teams last game, so after it was over we gathered for snacks and hot chocolate. She was very proud to get her trophy- I think she was the best one on the team!! After her game I hung out with them for the remainder of the afternoon. We went to their local grocery store/strip mall and did some trick or treating. That was a lot of fun and the kids looked so adorable in their costumes! Alyssa was Goldilocks and J,B, and D were the 3 little bears!!! I left them to go pick up my sister and the kiddos. We then went home and the kids took a long nap, then we got them ready to go! Anaiah was a beautiful fairy and Evan was the cutest caterpillar ever! We took them to some people's house from church, grabbed some pizza and went home. We enjoyed our fellowship as our brother Drew was here for the weekend. It really was a perfect, fall day! And a Halloween I will remember forever!

And the picture of the 3 Little Pigs is of the girls I nanny for now- pretty cute huh?!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Time for a MASSIVE update!

Ok, so sometimes I even wonder why on earth I ever started a blog!!! But I know that way down deep in my heart I did it too keep the 2 people who read it informed about what is going on in my life!!! Haha!!! So I guess since the last blog I did was wayyyy back in the month of May I have a little bit of catching up to do! So here it goes...don't hold your breath as this may take a if I go back and begin with June, I will just say that overall it was a busy month. But the highlight of June was being able to first, go home and visit my family! I love going home to Idaho, it is always so great to see my mom, dad, sister in law, brother, grandmas, cousins, aunts and uncles!! But one of my reasons for going home this time was to help my mom complete the playroom that she had been working on for her wonderful grandchildren! So before going home I forced (wink,wink) myself to go and walk around Ikea for a few hours collecting furniture and stuff she needed to have for the playroom. I also managed to pick up a few things for me as well. I don't go there very often because it really is a store that I love and it is not/ would not be very difficult for me to buy lots of cute things there!!! So I ended up driving home and got there and back safe and sound. While there I was able to help my mom put together furniture and put last minute touches on the room. It ended up looking so fabulous!!! And Anaiah LOVED playing in it while she was at Nana and Papa's house! Here are some pictures for your viewing pleasure :)

Something else I did in June was fly to Arizona to attend the annual CAPPA conference. CAPPA is the organization I am getting my postpartum doula certification from. And I had such a wonderful time there! It was absolutely great- we had great weather, great speakers, great pools and great company! I met so many women who inspired me to stick with this and to get my butt in gear and finish up! It was a great opportunity for me to learn so much new information and I walked away being even more sure that this is what I want to do!
The first weekend of July I was able to go to the beautiful place of Cannon Beach, Oregon and spend time with my beloved Smith family and some of their best friends. It was a great weekend!! We had so much fun playing on the beach, going to the parade, shopping, and doing fireworks! I am so thankful that I am still able to see them as much as I do and that they are all still a big part of my life. I treasure our moments together even more now since I do not see them on a daily basis. This year was the boys first time experiencing fire works! They have always been in bed in the was a hoot to see how they reacted to them! They were all different, and some more fearful than the others, but they ended up loving them!

The most exciting event that happened in July was Andrew, Aimee, Anaiah and Evan came home from Africa for their furlough!!! I was soooo happy when the month of July was finally here! I could hardly stand the fact that after they got to the states they were in Seattle with some other family and friends for a week before making their way here! But, alas they did and I was so over joyed to reunite with them! It was amazing seeing them and their big kids! My niece Anaiah and nephew Evan are some of the most awesome, amazing kids ever and I have so enjoyed getting to know them more! It is also so awesome to see them interact with Papa and Nana Evans and Grandpa and Grandma Martin. It is one of the best things to see! And I really, really love their sweet kisses and hugs!

(Are your eyes burning yet??) Bear with me, we only have one month left for the summer months!!!

In August I had a birthday! I celebrated the big 2-7!! That is still kind of weird to say, but I don't feel old by any means! I had a great birthday and about 20 different times of celebrating (and that is just fine with me!) My first celebration was with my cousin Kelsey, who was here from Texas. We went out to a great Italian place that I love in Gresham! My best friend Elana took me out for dinner at Claim Jumper and sang to me all by herself!! I love her! Then I had a celebration with my family while we were all here in Oregon at my aunt and uncles house. And then Jamie and Danny took me to an awesome fondue restaurant! It had great food and an awesome atmosphere!! It was DELICIOUS (and we probably all gained about 15 ponds that night!)but it was worth it!!

ok, that is all I can manage for tonight! I need to get to bed...more to come! Hopefully tomorrow, but we shall see!

Friday, May 22, 2009

I wish..

I wish I had something really exciting to put on my blog since it has been a long,long time since I have updated it! But my life has been pretty ordinary lately. Nothing too exciting is going on. But I did start a new job last month. I have started working with a new family with triplets- and they are all girls this time! Two are identical and one is not. Which is the exact same as the boys I used to take care of! They are very cute and I love dressing them in their clothes! I love this family and know that it is a true blessing that I got this job, it will become full time in June!
The first weekend of May all of our friends were here in Portland for the final events at Cascade. It was so wonderful to see all of my beautiful girlfriends and to catch up, I am just sad as to why they were all here. We all said good-bye to Cascade, the place that brought us together almost 10 years is so strange to think that Cascade is no longer in existence- it was a great weekend, but very bittersweet. It is hard to let go of a place that really did transform my life in numerous ways.
Our weekend was very busy and packed with one thing after the next and while I was thankful to rest Sunday evening, I was also sad to say goodbye to my friends who live far away. The times we are all together now in one place and few and far between, but we are all grateful when those times happen!! My parents were here that weekend as well, and I was able to visit with them a little bit- and it was nice to see them as well!
Here are some pictures from Cascade weekend and a few of the cute little darlins I am watching now- enjoy!!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Happy Birthday Aimee!!

Happy Birthday my dear sister!!! I can't believe you are the big 30 today!!! My, where has the time gone?!?! I hope that you have a day filled with many blessings and that this year is filled with joy and love daily. I pray that you will find joy in your Savior, laughter in your children, love in your husband and harmony in your relatinships. I pray that you will live each day to the fullest and enjoy each and every second with your sweet babies. I pray you will continue to adjust well to living in a foreign country that is now your home. I wish I could be there to celebrate with you, but know that I am there in spirit and am thinking of you, praying for you and loving you from afar. I am so thankful for you and that God has blessed you with thirty years, I admire you in so many ways. Thank you for being the best big sister a girl could ask for. I miss you and love you!!!
Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday dear Aimee
Happy Birthday to you!!!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Back in the Swing..

Well here I am, after being back from Africa for a month trip was amazing and I really wish I were still there with my sister and her family. It was great to see her, Andrew, Anaiah and meet Evan. And I can not wait till July when they will be here on furlough- I think that is how you spell it! I look forward to seeing them again and having our family all on the same continent!
Life has been quite the transition since being back..first getting back and only working two days a finding another job for two more days a week...and now having different job opportunities on the horizon..wish it would have happened a week ago! We will see what happens. And the biggest transition of all has been not driving to Wilsonville everyday to see Alyssa, Jacob, Brandon and Derek. This has been hard and I am still adjusting to this. I know that I did the right thing in choosing to move on and find a new job, but that does not change that fact that I miss them lots and love them dearly!
I hope to update with more pics soon..we shall see!
By the way..I am sorry you are still seeing snowflakes when you view by blog..I have tried several times to get rid of the current code and it is not working! Who can help me out here? Hopefully that will be changed soon as well!

Monday, January 26, 2009

The Tale of Four Beds and a Million Mosquitos..

It has now been 3 days since Evan was born and I have had some time to think about the events of Friday as I was "laboring" with my sister. It was strange for me to know that my sister was going to be giving birth only 16 months after having Anaiah, and that she was going to be doing it in Uganda!! The thought of that made me very nervous and scared for her. I am thankful I was able to be here with her and see what things are really is a glimpse of what happened while we were at the hospital..
first of all, the laboring rooms are called "suites" which i found rather amusing since all that was in them was a bed, a chair and a bathroom. The suite had no toliet paper in the bathroom, no soap in the dispenser, and no towel to dry our hands on after washing!! The bed was rather uncomfortable for Aimee and it creeked very loudly anytime any of us sat on it!! We were able to find some toliet paper, and a nurse filled the dispenser with soap..but even after doing so it still did not come out!! So we just used hand sanitizer!! While Aimee was laboring she had several nurses come in and check on her and Evan to make sure all was going well..they were just so quiet about it. When she was having a contraction they would just sneak in the room and stand right behind her..she would sometimes have no idea they were there! It was just weird to me that they did not make it a point to let Aimee know they were in the room. And most of the time one of the nurses or doctor were talking I had no idea what they were saying!! They talk so quietly and have accents as I am sure I looked confused more than anything!! the day progressed Aimee's body did not dialate enough, so she ended up having a c-section. At the point of making this decision she was contracting a lot and they were when it was time to move her to go back for surgery the nurse brought in a bed that we had to move Aimee on to. The bed the nurse brought was pretty dinky and was sitting a lot lower than the bed Aimee was first the nurse was just going to make Aimee move to it without it being level with the other bed. So one of us suggested that we lower the one bed so they were even...and the funny/strange part is..the first bed Aimee was on had wheels and could have been moved out of the room just as easily!!! so we got her moved and she was off..or so we thought!! Cheryl and Andrew went back with her, and I was told after they went through the first double doors Aimee had to move onto another bed. And at this point, she was very tired and no one was around to help her except for Cheryl because Andrew was changing into his Cheryl helped her move onto that bed..but she was not done still!!! After they got to the OR they said she had to switch beds AGAIN because the one she had just been transferred to that was in the hallway of the OR was not she had to be moved again. And every time she was supposed to get onto a new bed she was left to do it on her own. It is such a blessing that Cheryl was back there and able to help her each time!!!
So needless to say, the process they have here is quite different!! From what I have seen it is hard for them to think things through ahead of time!
Chai tea is a big deal here and they drink it all of the time..I lost count of how many of the nurses asked Aimee if she wanted some hot chai while she was in labor!! She very politely told them no thank you each time, but the kept asking!!
A few hours later we made it to the recovery was nice and had a big bed for Aimee, Evan and Andrew to sleep in and there was a single bed for me. We all went to bed around 11 and I went right to sleep...but when we woke up at 2 for Aimee to feed Evan I found out that whole time Aimee and Andrew were getting eaten alive by mosquitos..the net that was around their bed was not big enough at all and they kept getting bit!! Thankfully Evan was in his bed with a net over him and was just fine! So from that point on Andrew and I proceeded to kill dozens of mosquitos. It was so nasty how many there were! He asked someone to bring them a new net..but that was never done. So he found an electric bug zapper and really instead of sleeping spent the rest of the night killing mosquitos! The next day we were moved to another room for a few different reasons and the mosquitos were not that bad in there! But let me tell you, I had to sleep on the most uncomfortable bed EVER!! When I layed down on it I felt like there was no mattress and I was sleeping on metal! I woke up with a very stiff neck and back the next day! I was so happy to sleep here at the house last night on a nice cozy bed without all of the mosquitos!!
Aimee said last night there were only like 2 in their room and they got a lot of rest. I was very happy to hear that!!! She and Evan may get to come home today..lets hope so!!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Uganda so Far....

I have been here for almost a week now and feel like I have adjusted pretty well. I was really tired the first few days, but am now on a good sleeping schedule. My trip over here was long, but it went very smoothly! Since being here, we have not left Kampala since we are still waiting on Evan to be born! Being in Kampala, I can tell that I am not in America, but I also don't feel quite like I am in Africa. Kampala has a lot of "American" aspects to it in a sense. We have gone out to eat a lot and gone to the mall as well. While driving down the streets here there is a lot going on. There are tons of people walking, lots of people on motorcycles, and lots of people driving! It is pretty intense and there is no way I would have any desire to be behind the wheel of a car here! There are lots of people on the street trying to sale all sorts of items, and they will walk right up to your car and stand there until you nod your head no. I feel like there is a lot going on, and that people have a lot of good ideas, but they do not know how to execute them. The city looks like it is in transition, maybe waiting for something better. It is just strange.

We went to Aimee's doctor last week and that was different. The office was very small and hot!! Her doctor was very nice, but I had a hard time understanding what he was saying to me. I have a funny story...while there, a mother was going to weigh her baby. And in order to weigh a child here, you put them in a cloth seat, and hang them from the scale. Well, this mother had gotten her baby girl naked, and as she was taking her baby out of the sling/seat the baby peed all over the floor. There was a lot of pee!! And the mother just walked off and left it. I can not even tell you how many people proceeded to walk through that little girls pee. It drove me crazy that no one was cleaning it up!!

I am having a very fun time with Anaiah Dawn!! She is so cute and so loving. It took her a few days to get used to me, but now I think we are good friends! She is one dramatic little girl, and that just makes me laugh! She is full of laughter and loves to be a part of our adult conversations. She gives Evan the sweetest kisses on Aimee's belly, we shall see how she treats him once he is here!! She loves to watch baby einstein videos and gets sooo excited when one is being put in for her! I love her so much and am so thankful we are getting to bond and know each other!

Aimee is doing pretty well, she is ready to have the baby though. And today would be a great day, it is cool and rainy. So she would not be too hot! She and I have been watching a lot of Jon and Kate plus 8 and last night we watched MamaMia, and she really liked it! Andrew is going crazy here and is ready to be back in Fort Portal!! So he has been playing on the computers a lot! We are all hangin in there, lets pray for a new baby to come very soon!!