Sunday, April 29, 2018

Week 17 - Cement and Bread

Our Spanish class from church met for yummy food. We had a lot of fun talking in Spanish, and boys enjoyed playing with the other children. It was a lovely day, and supper was outside.

Since Underfoot had a tooth pulled a few weeks ago, it revealed a cavity in between the teeth. He went before school and had his filling done. The advantages of still losing your teeth at the appropriate age are getting your other fillings done.The same afternoon as a dentist appointment Underfoot had his well-child visit. He had to have some immunization boosters done.  One of the shots had a vile connected to it. When the nurse went to give him the shot, the vial seal didn't break. She put the shot in so hard it shocked Underfoot..  The shot had to be re-administered and the second time it worked. Unfortunately the force of the shot cost him to have tears. He is a healthy boy.

I had my follow-up lab for cortisol levels with the endocrinologist. The results came back saying that my levels are within the normal ranges. We are still in the discovery process to understand what is going on with my body.

Underfoot participated in his charter school's after school orchestra. Being part of the orchestra has been a great joy for him. He played with the middle school orchestra in a concert. He was more excited to see his friend that evening.

I baked a couple dozen loaves of bread do you think the people that helped us with taking out the grass the previous weekend.
Baking has always been a great relief for me.

Our stake for church held at temple consecration day where we were invited to spend as much time as possible in the temple.
The schools teacher's decided to rally that day at the state capital for better pay. My boys were home, and arrangements were made for them to go play at a friend's house so I could attend the temple during the day. Sweetheart went in the evening.

Since I've been back on the concussion protocol, Sweetheart has been helping me with my text and email messages. I've been able to listen to some good books while my brain heals.

Underfoot has been working on the physical fitness requirements for his Tenderfoot rank. He completed the 30 days after his first test. Gratefully he improved in each area. The running was the most difficult for him. When he went to retest, his brother wanted to do it with him and had a lot of fun.

Hurricane is doing a school project called the Wax Museum. He has to identify a person to write a report about and then present them to his school. He chose a heart surgeon who helped develop the original heart-lung machine. We went to the thrift store to get scrubs for him to wear a costume. He requested that we find a real heart to be part of his presentation.

Sweetheart took out the cement for our front step on Saturday. He rented a jackhammer so we could save some money with the contract required to lay the cement.
This took him most of the day. He loaded the trailer (which we are grateful we have) and haul the cement to the dump. At the dump there was quite the line to to enter. The dump closed at 1:30 PM, and Sweetheart had arrived at 12:40 PM.
The dumps policy is that for every 10 minutes over it is a $50 fine. Sweetheart saw that he wasn't going to be able to get into the dump and complete the process because the line was so long. He worked it out with the attendant to call her supervisor and get a waiver for all the people in line.
She was grateful for his help as he went and told the other drivers in line so the line could move forward. He ended up dumping about 2 tons of cement. He was incredibly sore at the end of the day.

Hurricane was able to play in his first soccer game for the spring season. After having his ankle hurt at school he was benched from playing soccer. He played his game and hobbled off the field because it was not completely healed yet. He said he had a lot of fun.

 Tulip in Backyard

 Snow in Tree

 Mayan Chess Board

 Flowers from Sweetheart

 Tulip Potential

Fire Safety

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Week 16 - MRI

We were invited to a family's home for supper. They told stories as we listened to stories and laughed. The boys played with their zip line, toys, and the other children for the evening.  I left early to attend my self reliance class.
The three men in our family continue to get their weekly allergy shots. The shots are more difficult for Hurricane than they are for Underfoot. We hope that they will make a difference.

Sweetheart continues to see the chiropractor for the car accident. The hope is he will be released from care soon. He is getting regular adjustments and a bimonthly massage. He is improving and isn't as sore as he once was.

We had a private tryout piano lesson with a new teacher and hoped to have started with her this coming summer. After the lesson, we made arrangements for us to begin with the teacher. Two days later the teacher came back and said that she felt she couldn't in good conscience put our boys at the beginning of her wait list. She has a wait list of about 2 1/2 years. I appreciated her honesty for being true to her principles.

In honor of Columbine, there was no school on April 20. We signed Underfoot up for a middle school orientation class. He attended the in the day, and he was really excited to begin middle school in the fall.
Lunch Date

While he was in his class, Hurricane and I went to see my PCP since the headaches hadn't gone away for the concussion.  She scheduled an MRI for me that afternoon to make sure that nothing was going on in my brain and had an x-ray taken of my neck.

I found a willing family to watch the boys while I went for the MRI. The result said that the brain is fine, and we had to wait on results for the neck. I was relieved to know that the brain was OK. Because of headaches I have been returned to concussion protocol with no screens, no reading, no exercise, lots of hydration, and the rest. We determined that it needs to be for 14 days.

On Saturday it snowed so we couldn't work on our yard.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Week 15 - Sod Removal

Underfoot met with his leaders for a Scoutmaster conference for his Scout Rank. They took their time to be through with him on seeing if he mastered the skills for the Scout Rank. Later that evening there was an informational meeting for the 11 year old camp out in June.

Hurricane has been on crutches for the week and has mastered the skill of using them well. One day after picking him up from school he said that his armpits hurt and wanted to see the chiropractor. We took him to the chiropractor. When the chiropractor didn't pop his armpits, Hurricane asked how he was going to fix the problem. In the process of his adjustment, Hurricane startled the chiropractor by faking falling off the table. We all laughed hard.

The Wolf den went on a compass scores for their activity.
Since Hurricane was on crutches, his leaders at different times would carry him on their backs. That is real dedication of a Cub Scout leader.

I met with the moms to plan Teacher Appreciation week. We decided on a beach theme and created different activities for each day. Some of those activities include a favorite book, where your teacher's favorite color to school, a potato bar, ice cream sundae bar, and other fun things for that week.

Book Club discussed the book Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown. The boys wanted to come to the book club because they had listen to the book as well. They enjoyed the story as I did. While I was at book club, the boys all went and helped a family move.

On Saturday we took out all of the sod in our front yard. After working on it Friday evening, Sweetheart decided he would take the sod out of the ground while the rest of us shook off the dirt. On Saturday as he began this process, he realize he would be dead tired and not even finish half of one section. He rented a sod cutter.
Our neighbor across the street didn't have anything going on and came to help Sweetheart with the process. At lunchtime, Sweetheart asked for help from other people. While this was happening, I was working on a surprise project.

We listed the sod on Facebook for free. Six truck fulls of sod were taken. We were grateful we didn't have to haul the sod to the dump.


Compass Course with Crutches

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Week 14 - Surprise Visitors and Chipped Ankle Bone

We celebrated Easter in Pagosa Springs. We enjoyed LDS General conference at the hotel. We were grateful for a beautiful ride home.
On our ride home we discussed the plans for what we will accomplish this coming summer. The boys will participate in the swim team, mommy school, and 4-H.

The boys returned to school for their standardized testing. They enjoyed most not having to have homework and have more time to play.  They felt good about their testing.

Hurricane and Sweetheart completed the Pine Wood derby car on Tuesday evening. They took it to be weighed in at the leader's house.
The races were on Wednesday. Sweetheart and I were asked to help with loading the cars into their heat for the track. Hurricane had hoped he would take the place so he could go to district pinewood derby. First and second place go to district Pine Wood Derby, and Hurricane took third place our pack.
We had the Pine Wood Derby with another pack who made car stands for each of the boys.

On Tuesday, Hurricane's friend's mom called in the middle of the day, and asked if Hurricane would be part of a birthday surprise for her son. She invited to take Hurricane to a trampoline gym so he and her son could play for his birthday. I kept it a surprise for Hurricane too. The boys had a lot of fun jumping and playing together.

We had a visit from Aunt Mimi and Bug, our aunt and cousin. They decided to come during Sara's spring break.
While they were here we talked, tried different apple types, ate fun fruit dips, and made homemade pizza. We were very grateful for their visit and that they would be willing to come and be with us. It was a complete surprise for the boys.

We decided to join 4-H. This summer the boys will be doing different projects. We are in a club called the V.I.P.'s. Elections were held at the meeting and each of the boys were elected to positions. They are excited for having a club.

I have felt for some time that we need to find a trampoline and looked on Craigslist for almost 2 weeks. I contacted a person selling the trampoline and made arrangements to get the trampoline. The person emailed me and asked if my sons went to a specific school because she was a teacher at that school and thought that our boys were her students. We bought their Spanish teacher's trampoline. Now we have to dig a hole in our backyard to put the trampoline in.

Our medical report follows. On Monday I decided to try out yoga. I went to a Silver Sneakers class. It was chair yoga and fun. The instructor was a bit odd. Sweetheart went and had his final check up for his surgery with the ENT doctor. He is good to go. Hurricane has one more month with his braces and will then get a retainer. The braces were to bring his top teeth over his bottom teeth. I started with acupuncture to help with the concussion. Avi the acupuncturist said I was really tight I am that he was going to hope after the session I felt a lot better.
He did cupping on my back to help.

I met with an endocrinologist this week to find out why my pituitary gland was producing more than it needed. We took blood work, and my levels were in appropriate ranges. It looks like the body is heal itself. She ordered another test to suppress one hormone for a double assurance that things are OK.

Hurricane came home from school one day saying his ankle hurt. He had been playing soccer at recess and got hit in the ankle. He kept complaining and limping about the house. We decided to take him to the urgent care where he got an x-ray and found that his ankle bone had been chipped. He was told to do ice baths and see if we could find crutches and use them for the next week. There is a family in our neighborhood who had a pair of crutches that he could use. He had to have his ankle wrapped and isn't able to play in soccer at school or on his soccer team.

 Pine Wood Derby Preparation

Pine Wood Derby Preparation

Pine Wood Derby Preparation

Easter Breakfast
 Pagosa Springs


 From our niece who served her mission in the Adriatic States Mission

 Present from Hawaii

 Smoothie Breakfast

 Before School

Snowy Morning

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Week 13 - Concussion, Great Sand Dune, and LDS General Conference

We got on a plane to come home on Palm Sunday. We got to the airport super early.
Underfoot tried to take of all the details so I wouldn't have to read the boards and not tire my brain. Sweetheart called before we left to fly home. Underfoot took the phone away from me and said to Sweetheart, "Mom needs to go to the Urgent Care immediately when we get home. Do you understand?" I found it was very sweet.

We arrived home. All our bags arrived before we did, and we went directly to the urgent care. The doctor came in, and Underfoot said, "My Mom doesn't take medicine ever. She has taken it the last 2 days. I think she has a concussion." The doctor took him seriously. We did the concussion screening. He started to ask questions about dates, presidents, events, and such. I have the same birthday as the doctor. He was trying to figure out what to ask. I just gave him the events that were to coming up. The only one I struggled with was subtracting 7 from 100. I got stuck in the 70s.

He recommended no screens, no reading, limited appointments, limited driving, hydration, and rest for the week. If I began to throw up or pass out, I would get a trip to ER. We returned home, and they put me to bed. Sweetheart helped me to cancel, reschedule, or ask for a substitute for the appointments for the week.

Sweetheart had ordered one part for the car three times. It came on Tuesday, and he replaced the part. He scheduled an alignment for Thursday. We were a 1 car family until Thursday. Our week was take Sweetheart to work, take boys to school, I would come home and go to bed then pick up the boys and then get Sweetheart.

There were some appointments we couldn't cancel like piano, orchestra, and the dentist. Underfoot had a baby tooth that was pulled since it was a little loose and had a cavity in it that was super deep. I was more cost effective than fixing the cavity.

We made the decision in January to go to the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Pagosa Springs for the weekend.
Before we left to go, the boys wanted to attend the Parent Teacher Conferences. We arrived right when the conferences started and place the boys in lines to meet with their different teachers. Parent Teacher Conference is our health gym with the teachers on the outside of the gym for parents to meet with them. We met with all five teachers in under one hour. It must've been a record. The boys teachers reported that they are doing well and are progressing.

We were excited to see the Great Sand Dunes National Park. We arrived close to sunset and had brought a piece of cardboard to use as a sled. At the Sand Dunes, sledding is a summertime event. We learned as we were traveling that the cardboard most likely wouldn't work. We could rent a sled but it was 40 minutes away.
The boys still wanted to try and carried the piece of cardboard out to the Sand Dunes. We had a lot of fun seeing those natural phenomena. A professional photographer it was set up to take pictures along the side of the road. 
He snapped a really nice picture of us.

We came to Pagosa Springs for LDS General conference weekend. On Saturday morning, we attended the solemn assembly at the local chapel. We had the opportunity to sustain Russell M Nelson as the prophet and president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. We hope that our boys will remember that experience. Many other wonderful things were announced during conference such as changes in how we minister to each other, temple announcements, and that the men will meet together and not be separated by their office in the priesthood it any longer.

Between sessions we watched movies, went swimming at the swimming pool, found made yummy food. One of the things that we did was to die Easter eggs with onion skins. There is a story of the grandmothers who would dye Easter eggs after World War II and share this with their grandchildren that lived in eastern Europe. We watch the movie Wonder with Sweetheart.

 On the Ride Home

 Snow Angel

 Snow Angel Result

 Pine Wood Derby Preparation

 Great Sand Dunes

 Great Sand Dunes

 Walking in the Sand



Sunday, March 25, 2018

Week 12 - Spring Break in Arizona

Spring Break was in Arizona. Our friends invited us to come work! Home improvement projects are one of my favorite activities - painting, gardening, pulling up carpet, putting in new flooring, amongst other work projects.

The task was pulling wallpaper - three rooms of wallpaper.

The boys got the spring break of their dreams. They played with friends, games, Legos, jumped on the trampoline, went to the park, and watched movies. Yet  we took their piano books to practice while my friend and I pulled wallpaper. Every so often they were called up to pick up the pieces of the wallpaper that we dropped on the floor.

Merris, Sweetheart's sister, gave her husband a kidney the week before we came. We didn't tell them we were coming because we didn't know how things were going. On Sunday before heading to church, we came to the house and surprised their family.
The night before we asked about ice cream toppings. One of their cousin's reaction was shock. Luckily we got to see Grandma, Aunt Yvette, and our Arizona family.
One day the boys' cousin came and played for the day; a different day their Auntie took the nephews and niece to a museum. They got to swimming with their cousin and his friends. We are so grateful for the kindness of family! We are so happy to have spent time together.

Our annual tradition of getting an free cone at Dairy Queen.
Sweetheart got one in Colorado.
We went to the one in Arizona with our friends.

While we were in Arizona, Sweetheart did a significant amount of work on the Honda Pilot. He replaced the front and rear shocks, power steering pump, a arms, inner and outer tie rods, rear brakes, water pump, timing belt, accessory belt, belt tensioner, spark plugs, power steering fluid flush, new coolant, new transmission fluid, and an oil change. He has left to change starter, valve cover gaskets, and power steering fluid flush. He would go to work, the chiropractor, and work on the car.

We flew stand by gratefully. We usually drive everywhere so this might be a surprise. Picking a flight to come home was more challenging than we thought because of my indecisiveness. We were enjoying ourselves so much but missed Sweetheart. He was concerned that he didn't have the car finished so he encouraged us to stay as long as possible.

Since we were in Arizona, Sweetheart had to make the dessert for our Spanish class. He made homemade pumpkin pie.
I was so proud of him!

The one down thing that happened was when I was putting away the citrus picker after getting Sweetheart citrus was I was hit on the head by a fertilizer spreader that was hung improperly in the garage. My head immediately started to hurt.
Underfoot started to take care of me because he has had a concussion and thought that I had one. Saturday was a little hard because my headache wouldn't go away, and I was significantly irrational and emotional.

We went to an Easter egg hunt and church breakfast. The boys had a marvelous time!

One sad moment during the week was that we learned my sister-in-law's mother passed away from meningitis. She had been hospitalized for a time. We are grateful for the goodness of Stephanie and her life.

 Full Bloom Mesquite Tree

 Crescent Moon

 Water in the Desert


 Easter Egg Haul

 Easter Egg Haul

At Supper with my Hostess

 Easter Hunt Haul
Treats Brought to the Kidney Patients