Tuesday, December 15, 2009

One magical inch

Read back to September's post and Brandon was 5 ft. 3-1/4 inches tall. As of two days ago he has grown one magical inch which makes him taller than Mom. He is happy to remind me of this at least 6 times per day.

We have recently had two cousins born into our families. Mike's niece had a baby boy on Nov. 11th and Seth's cousin had a baby girl on Nov. 23rd. So fun to wander the baby aisles in the stores and see all the fun little clothes, plus all the crazy gadgets. Only 16 years ago I didn't need most of this stuff!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Almost Christmas

Ok, at long last I am actually making a new post. I use my blog to follow lots of other blogs, but rarely think to update mine. Here's to a new year resolution in December.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Family update

We are enjoying the beginning of fall in Illinois. The evenings are definitely cooler and this week's days have been sunny and beautiful. We went to the Apple 'N' Pork Festival in Clinton, IL last weekend. A lot of fun to visit little towns and wander around.

My parents went to visit my brother's family last week (Micah's birthday) and and she sent a few pictures. I always like to point out that David is younger than I but has much more gray hair... a little sister love there... Makes me laugh that the kids are all in jeans when it was about 100 degrees there.

Kendra is 15, Caleb is 13-1/2, and Micah turned 12 this week.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

A Thursday Post

Today I just wanted to look at something pretty.

Almost looks like Oregon weather in central Illinois today. Has been really foggy the past 3 mornings and doesn't totally burn off through the day. Definitely has an autumn chill in the air in the evenings.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Headaches & Stomachaches

Between Mike's 4-1/2 day migraine last week, Seth's cold and now Brandon's "I don't feel good" mantra, I feel like "Dr. Mom".

Brandon had a physical yesterday and is perfectly healthy, but he got the bacterial menigitis vaccine and I think that's driving his "I don't feel good", as in he's talking himself into not feeling well. The doctor said Brandon is primed for a big growth spurt "any minute". As of yesterday he was 5 ft. 3-1/4 inches. In Oregon he was later at growing than most of his friends, but here it seems he is right in the middle of the pack, height-wise.

Seth has lost several pounds in the past month. He has a pair of shorts that now just fall off after he fastens them. In addition to PE at school, he is walking on the treadmill for 45-60 minutes almost every day. I think partly it's so he can have some quiet, alone time with his cell phone, texting. I know he's not moving very fast on the treadmill, but he's moving and that's what counts!

The dogs keep doing their doggy things. Buster really likes the toy box for all the balls and stuffed animals. He carefully digs around for each item and spreads them around the house. "Magically" the next day, they are all back in the box and he repeats the game. At least it keeps him busy & away from pestering Buddy for a few minutes.

And yes I did change the format & background. I had to mess around with it for awhile to get rid of the old one completely, but I triumphed in the end and everything was saved.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Monday Madness... never ends

While I wasn't directly affected by some of the chaos in the office today, it swirled around a vortex that was self-sustaining.

The boys have survived 3 full days of school, through today. Here is my text conversation with Brandon this afternoon:

Mom - texted to both boys - home yet? Shouldn't have 2 remind u everyday
Brandon - Yes im home and remind of what
Mom - 2 let me know that u r home
Brandon - Why mom. im capable
Mom - Yes u r capable of getting home BUT i need 2 know u made it alive. common courtesy 2 obey ur mother
Brandon - Ok

Five minutes later Seth replies - Yea we're home

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

August 19th

Lots of things have happened on August 19th in my past... My neice was born 15 years ago. A nephew was born 22 (?) years ago. Seth broke out in a measle-type rash on the 10th day after his MMR vaccine... wish I had a picture of that one.

And now 2009 - it's the first day of school! I did take pictures and will post those tonight. Our drive & drop-off times worked well. It's a short day for both boys. I took the afternoon off to spend with them. Maybe we'll do something fun... like shopping!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Twice Yearly Posting?

I can't believe that it has been almost 6 months since I posted here. So much has happened...

March - the boys came to visit Illinois during Spring Break. Loved having them with us, hated sending them back to Oregon. The apartment was sooo quiet after they left.

April - Seth's famous bike accident. More on that in a later post....

May - I don't really remember May.

June - I don't remember much of June either except that there was a hot, humid spell here and it was not fun. Then at the end of the month I attended Women of Faith in St. Louis with my mom. My dad and the boys arrived safely on June 30th.

July - A month of juggling Seth's doctor appts with new doctorsa nd figuring out the best course of follow-up treatment.

August - Now both boys are enrolled in school and are ready to start on Wednesday the 19th. Whew!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Making a trip to the Library?

The BBC made a list of classics that they thought everyone should read. They said they reckon that most people have read six of these. Put an "x" behind the ones that you have read. I tag whomever wants to play!

I am happy to say that I have 17 X's on this list... which is no surprise if you know me. Wonder if seeing the movie counts??!!! Think I'll be making a trip to the library very soon.

1 Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2 The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien X
3 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
4 Harry Potter series - JK Rowling X
5 To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
6 The Bible X
7 Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
8 Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell X
9 His Dark Materials trilogy - Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
11 Little Women - Louisa M Alcott X
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
13 Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien X
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveller’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch - George Eliot
21 Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell X
22 The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald
23 Bleak House - Charles Dickens
24 War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
26 Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28 Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck X
29 Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
30 The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
31 Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32 David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
33 Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis X
34 Emma - Jane Austen
35 Persuasion - Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis X
37 The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Berniere
39 Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
40 Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne X
41 Animal Farm - George Orwell
42 The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown X
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
45 The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery X
47 Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
48 The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood
49 Lord of the Flies - William Golding
50 Atonement - Ian McEwan
51 Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52 Dune - Frank Herbert
53 Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
54 Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
55 A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57 A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
58 Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61 Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck X
62 Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
63 The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
65 Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
66 On The Road - Jack Kerouac
67 Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary - Helen Fielding
69 Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71 Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
72 Dracula - Bram Stoker
73 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
74 Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses - James Joyce
76 The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
77 Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal - Emile Zol
79 Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80 Possession - AS Byatt
81 A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens X
82 Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83 The Color Purple - Alice Walker
84 The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86 A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte’s Web - EB White X
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Alborn
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90 The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
91 Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
92 The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery
93 The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94 Watership Down - Richard Adams
95 A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98 Hamlet - William Shakespeare
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl X
100 Les Miserables - Victor Hugo

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A New Friend

We have been attending Eastview Christian Church and really like it. It is a mega-church compared to what we are used to, but the excitement and energy radiating from the people are motivating.

I met a lady at a membership-type class at the church, who also works at Country, and she has now invited me to a women's Bible study with an exercise class. It's on Tuesday evenings, and I'm not going tonight... but I did put it on my calendar for next week. They are studying Balance that Works when Life Doesn't by Susie Larson. I've added Susie's blog to my list and am excited to get started with the exercise group/Bible study.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Valentine's Day

My valentine and I are together this morning, having hot tea & coffee, looking at the snow out our window. Yes, it snowed a little last night.. maybe only half an inch. I still like it... but the Illinois natives are restless and ready for spring. This snow is not supposed to last long; the sun is already hitting it.

We are not planning much for the weekend. I brought a lot of work home, and a few errands to run. Otherwise it's just another day in paradise :) !

Monday, January 12, 2009

Central Illinois

Well, 2 weeks into residency we are adjusting well. I survived the first week in my new office pretty well. I didn't get lost any of the times I went to the cafeteria or conference rooms. The girls in my department have been very welcoming and wonderfully helpful.

Mike is still job-hunting. Just getting a call back would be nice... keep praying!

The boys are doing great with Grammie and Grandpa. Brandon has been the one to call more often, just needing to know what we are doing, if we like it, how is Buddy liking the area, etc. It's his way of being reassured.

We are still unpacking, although I definitely see that we are making progress. Mike has rearranged the 2nd bedroom to make more room for getting to boxes. So far nothing is broken... all the depression glass, china, trinkets, etc. survived intact.

We are adjusting to Central Time on the TV schedule. It is very weird that 8pm shows are on at 7pm, and so on. All three local network channels have news at 10pm, and then Letterman & Leno come on at 10:35pm.

Groceries are pretty close to the same prices as Oregon. Gas is about $1.87. Houses look a little lower than Salem, but we aren't looking much... waiting for the Salem house to sell... #2 item to pray for.

We are supposed to get a cold snap today... then another one late Tuesday/early Wednesday. By Thursday, the high temp is forecast to be 5 above zero!! It is much drier than Oregon so in some ways it doesn't seem as cold. We'll keep staying warm by the gas fireplace!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year

I can't believe the whole month of December went by without a post... wow.

The Hawaii vacation was fabulous. I only got a little sunburned, and no peeling. I'll find the cord for the camera soon. Speaking of finding things, our move to Illinois has happened too.

We left Salem on Dec. 26th and headed south to Vacaville to stay the night with my brother's family. Buddy tried to drown himself in the pool (he's mostly blind and blundered into it in the dark), but we found him in time. The water was so cold, and he doesn't swim well. He was very happy to be held and dried, and then snuggle on the bed with us. No lasting effects.. except he is more cautious about stepping where the ground changes.. like from grass to cement, or tile to carpet.

Saturday, Dec. 27, we left Vacaville at 7am and drove south toward Bakersfield. We had one small adventure in that following the GPS unit (Rhoda) took us off I-5, across the freeway, down a local road for 2-3 miles, back across the freeway, down another road for 4-5 miles, and then back on the freeway. There was no construction, nothing to avoid... we just followed instructions. We could see I-5 all the time and kept thinking there was a point to the detour... but there wasn't.

At Bakersfield we finally turned east and went across the Mojave desert. There was quite a bit of traffic, but even more was headed the opposite way. Very uneventful... and quite chilly. I've only been through the Mojave a couple of times that I remember and this was the first time in the winter. We had one stop for gas where I had to wait in line for 30 minutes for the ladies room. No one in line was happy about that. We arrived in Kingman, Arizona at about 7:30pm... a long day.

Sunday, Dec. 28th, we slept in later and reaaranged the van contents quite a bit. It helped a lot to be able to see where things were and reach what we wanted. We drove due east and crossed Arizona and New Mexico that day. The weather was cold and sunny. We crossed the Continental Divide at 7,330 feet. We stopped in Tucumcari, NM for the night. Sunday's drive was only about 10 hours.

Monday, Dec. 29th, we left early and thought we would grab a quick bite of breakfast on our way out of town, or maybe at the next exit. However, we kept driving and driving and there was nothing! We crossed the New Mexico/Texas border and it was more desolate than the Mojave. The best thing about this part of the drive is that we were seeing amazing high-desert landscape. Several places reminded us of the cliff scenes in the movie Cars... the bluffs really did look like the fronts of old cars. We stopped briefly at the Petrified Forest National Park because Mike had never seen it. By the time we stopped in Amarillo, Texas, it was long past breakfast. After Texas was Oklahoma, and on to Oklahoma City, finally turning northeast toward Tulsa and then Missouri. We stayed in Springfield, MO on Monday night. Kudos to La Quinta hotel because they don't charge up-front for small pets.

Tuesday, Dec. 30th, was the final stretch. Our goal was to get to Bloomington by afternoon so we could pick up the keys to our new apartment. We made it by 3:00, and were at our apartment by 4:00pm. It's nice, fairly large and very beige. Everything is a neutral color. We went to Walmart for a few necessities, like a shower curtain and something to sit on, and some groceries. The only glitches we found were that the toilet leaks in one bathroom, and the tub drain doesn't work in the other bathroom. The tub drain shouldn't be too hard to fix... back to Walmart for some Drano.

New Year's Eve was very quiet and uneventful. We stayed up until midnight watching movies on the computer... and then I couldn't sleep. I stayed up until 2:37 this morning... reading by the fire in the living room. Life is good... our household goods get delivered tomorrow (Friday) so we'll have the weekend to get organized.

I'll post more soon with more thoughts and less facts.