Saturday, January 31, 2009

The Beach in Black and White

Spending the weekend at the coast with friends...









And that's really all I have to say about it!
We're having a great time relaxing, walking the beach, reading, playing in the rocks and just letting our worries pass on by (except when I found out my son was throwing up all night and his mother was nowhere to be found *sigh*)
Be home on Sunday!!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Word Filled Wednesday Psalm 100:2

The purpose of Word Filled Wednesday is to share the WORD through a photo and a verse.

Psalm 100:2 Worship the LORD with gladness, come before him with joyful songs.


I have SO missed the last two weeks of Word Filled Wednesday - it's my favorite bloggy carnival because I really do get the most out of it. It lifts me up!

WORSHIP is the topic for me this month. Don't worry, even though my last three weeks have been filled with flooding, sickness, death, tremendous spiritual warfare and just plain old exhaustion, I can say that the joy of the Lord is with me, and was with me the entire time! I have many things to be GLAD for!! Here, why don't I share a few, and maybe it can turn your frown upside down too? I don't want to keep it all for myself you know.

I am glad that I have a family and wonderful kids who are healthy and happy.
I am glad that my Grandfather was baptized and is now at home with Jesus
I am glad that I have friends who will stick by me through thick and thin
I am glad that I am married to a man of incredibly strong faith, and who challenges me to be a better person every day
I am glad that I am part of a WONDERFUL church family
I am glad that our worship team has overcome some major obstacles recently to pull together and just WORSHIP! We're going through a study called, "The Worshiping Artist" and a few thoughts really stuck with me, but I want to share this tidbit:

"Worship is more than just music, it's a lifestyle"
and also,
"Worship is not something we only do on Sundays, it's a way of life"

May your day be filled with joyful songs of worship!

Thanks for joining me today... for more inspiring posts, please visit:

Monday, January 26, 2009

Not Me! Monday: I AM awake!

LYING AND JUST PLAIN OL' GETTING AWAY WITH IT.
That, and other gibberish....

For the sake of saving time (so I can sleep some more) I'm going to make this quick and painless. Well, painless for everyone except ME.

I did NOT promise one of the campers at the High School Winter Retreat that I'd add her cute little mug to my album on Myspace IMMEDIATELY upon arriving home, only to have it be a WEEK later and I still haven't even put the memory card into my computer. What? You think I'm a liar?

I did NOT have a delightful time working at the camp. It's all about LABOR and SACRIFICE and HARD WORK and I certainly didn't go around calling it a BREAK because my own kids weren't there to torture me keep me company.

I promise that I did NOT utterly and completely LOVE playing with the worship band while I was there. I get freaked out about short notice stuff like that - I would never have enjoyed it - fo sho!

There was nobody here that promised to do another week of camp in the summer. We all know it takes a HUGE amount of physical and emotional energy for me to have survived the last few go-rounds, and I would NOT subject myself all over again. Months in advance, no less.

I absolutely did NOT forget that I am hosting Bunko tonight, and when my friend mentioned yesterday that she was going to attend, I did NOT give myself away by flashing that deer in the headlights look that made her ask, "You aren't ready at ALL are ya??"

I totally didn't worry myself to death for three weeks straight because my period was uncharacteristically late. (Sorry again guys, I didn't type that). I also didn't tease my husband like CRAZY about what we'd name the 6th child, and tell him all about failed tubal ligations and stuff to the point that I think he considered a vasectomy as a backup plan.

I wasn't just a tad unhappy when the problem corrected itself because for goodness sake, I am DONE having kids or ever wanting any more!! I am, I swear!

And lastly, it's NOT me sitting in this chair, my head lolled to one side, mouth drooping open and drool starting to form because I am SO tired from going to sleep at 4 a.m. that I can't do anything right now but type and breathe. Sort of breathing, even that is hard work.

For more public humiliation therapy, head on over to MckMama's place. If you can handle the lies truth!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Edited to Add

*AHEM!*

Excuse me, but it has been brought to my attention that I have made a grave typographical error. Considering I am a direct descendant from a long line of Proofreading Police, I must offer my deepest regrets. Today, I got THIS in my email...

FYI:
Wee wee pads are CHUX! Not spelled CHUCKS. "Chucks" would be the possessive term for an item that belonged to someone named "Charles".
See this link: http://www.dhmedical.com/chweepa.html
Sincerely,
The Proofreading Police (tee hee)



In my defense, I purposely chose the incorrect spelling. It just looked better my way. And since this is my blog, I can do that. And it's my party, I can cry if I wanna. It's in the rules.

But in case the Proofreading Police finds anything else amiss, I must say, that over the course of the last handful of posts, I DID know that there was at least a couple typos. Usually from middle of the night typing marathons, with glazed over eyes, I did something weird and posted it. Then, I chose to ignore them when proofreading. The reason, you ask? I had already posted my blog, and correcting my errors and reposting would result in the blog going out AGAIN to those people who asked for automatic emails when I post. I can't have THAT either.

So, your vote is... would you rather see a corrected blog, or a duplicate email?

Talk to me ppl, or I'll make so menny misteaks that it will drive yew ntus!

By the way, I won't let on who sent me that email Mom, I promise!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Hi Blog, remember me?

Dear Bloggie Blog (you know I like to call you that),

I'm really sorry that I've been distant lately. I know I promised to write to you after a little break, but that little break turned into a bigger break, and I have just felt so overwhelmed with all the thoughts and feelings, the stories, the joys and the heartbreaks of the last three weeks that I just didn't know where to start. So here goes, I'm jumping back in. I hope you can forgive me.

I did not plan to wake up today and find out we were already into the third week of January. How did that happen? Oh right. I was sick. And then, I was fatigued. And then, I became exhausted. And then, I ceased to have muscle function. I also ceased to have female type events (sorry guys, forgot to warn you first... too late now) because of all the aforementioned stuff. THAT is how I know I'm not dealing with things very well. So the last couple days have knocked me off my feet once again, and I'm done. DONE I tell ya!

Ok, we all know that isn't for real. Here's the paragraph where I start to tell the truth. The truth is: I am tired! I want to sleep, but my brain is on an opposite schedule from my body. It's awake at night, and asleep during the day. It's like having a newborn stuffed inside my skull. Maybe if I rock my head back and forth, just so, it will nod off? How about a car ride? Oh, nevermind, I tried that once, and it worked (unfortunately for the car I was driving, and the long tow-truck ride afterwards.) Couldn't I just shove a bottle in my ear and see if anything latches on?

Alright, what's really going on is that God has put me on a treadmill. Not a REAL one, heck no! But I'm huffing and puffing (just like in real life!) and I'm at a 5 percent incline. What's with the incline? Isn't the speed too high? C'mon God, give me something I can work with reasonably here! Yes, I whined. Yes, I darned near passed out. I even had a few dizzy spells, but God told me somethin'. He didn't come out and YELL it or anything, but somewhere, somehow, he reminded me that He can get me through anything.

You want to know how He told me? It's kind of cool actually... I was uploading ALL of my Word Filled Wednesday graphics to an album online. This meant, that I actually had to LOOK at them as I was selecting them. Then, this verses just FLEW off the screen at me, and I'm still chewing on it. It tastes interesting.

James 1:2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
Hello? Did anyone else hear that? Yeah... I thought so. He was talking to ME! Click here to see the post I'm talking about since I can't put the dadgum picture up for some reason.

So, Bloggie Blog, I'm here to tell you that I'm "considering" this joy thing a lot more, and trying to work it into my days, (and my nights too, apparently) and I'll be coming around more to fill you in on STUFF. I'll try to make it nice, fun stuff, like back in the old days when we made people wet their pants and all.

Get out the chucks, cover your chairs, and let's have some bloggie fun!

But first... I'm going to get some sleep. Hang on for just a bit longer.

Yours truly,

Friday, January 16, 2009

A Year in Review 2008

2008
Another year has come and gone, and this tradition of summing up the prior 12 months has become something I've managed to stick with for years now. (Ha! Because I only started it last year!) So without further ado... and with pictures this time...

JANUARY started off with our first visit (of many) to the orthodontist. Eventually we'd find out that our daughter needed quite a bit of work on her teeth, and once she's paid for, our other daughter and one son will be next in line. This month saw us actively practicing what we were preaching, and putting our marriage first. We attended a Couple's Retreat at camp, amidst a LOT of snow, and also did a couple's getaway at the coast with friends. Our youngest turned five!

FEBRUARY was the month of new things! The girls took off separate weekends and attended winter camp for the first time - one of which Mr Nice Guy and I helped out at. We also had a special delivery of mail-order chicks arrive this month. Love at first sight times 15! Raising chicks in the dining room for a couple weeks proved to be very bonding for everyone. Those chicks are now laying eggs and making a ruckus outside. As luck would have it, I'm ready to do it again. We also had about 20 yards of gravel delivered and started making a new road out to where we would place a new barn. Pirate boy turned 8!


Blue Belt Testing

MARCH was a busy month of getting things ready. Princess D had early morning choir practices and a couple of really neat concerts. She also earned her Blue belt in Tae Kwon Do (next one is brown!). we spent many hours digging fenceposts with our new post hole digger, making a road and preparing the ground for our garden. Mr Nice Guy spent part of two separate weeks in Portland at the Toyota Training Center getting ready to teach new things at his job. Whatever problems I was having with my heart got me a two day traveling visit with a Holter monitor, which showed on paper the things I'd been feeling for a few weeks. They told me to de-stress myself. My firstborn turned 12, and I penned my first blog post here on Blogger.


New Fence

APRIL gave us lots of rain, and a little rest. We spent a WONDERFUL few days in Redmond at a Weekend to Remember conference. (HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!) The fruit trees we planted a year ago started to look like trees instead of sticks. I planted a ton of vegetable starts. I also spent a weekend at the Women's Retreat at camp and worked like a crazy mad woman to get the sound and the media up and running so there would be no complaints about it like the year before (Note to self: Don't complain about things you can do better at, or you'll get stuck with it). We purchased another Suburban, Mr Nice Guy turned 37 and he got a pair of baby turkeys as a gift. Wasn't that nice of me?


Mom & Dad (not the turkeys)

MAY showed us many new things. My firstborn spent a week at outdoor school, Princess D took her first four day field trip on the Oregon Trail and Pirate Boy and I went to tea. A gorgeous Mother's Day at the beach was followed by my parents' departure for 2 weeks to Israel. I worried about their life insurance, and they worried about nothing really, except sunscreen. We spent Memorial Day weekend camped out at Grove camp in the most horrendous rain imaginable, and we also celebrated our 6th anniversary and my 35th birthday while we were at it. I started my Word Filled Wednesday posts during this month and the post on My Strange Genetic Disease was added, which to this day, gets more hits on google than any other blog I've written. Ever.


Wet camp. Very wet.

JUNE finally started drying out, and we were able to put in a much later than expected garden by the end of the first week. My neice Abigayle was born this week as well. I went to my first President's Club Luncheon as a reward for exceeding my prior year's sales goals with Avon, and Mr Nice Guy and I took the week after school got out for the annual trip with his club. We had a fantastic time in Reno, and came home with new (embarassing) pictures and even more hilarious memories. We got home in time to send Princess D off to a week of summer camp.

Yosemite National Park
JULY took off like a bang! My in-laws arrived from Boise, my firstborn spent a week at camp, Princess D had her 10th birthday and the fourth of July found us discovering an "unauthorized" hatch of baby chicks wandering around in the field! Then, I went and spent a week with High School students at camp and came home with a new desire to put my faith into practice - in real ways. The week after I got home from camp, we left on our first 2 week family vacation EVER. We spent almost a week in Angels Camp California, and I got to reconnect with an old friend from elementary school, Matt Zeugin, and his lovely family. I got to experience first hand what it feels like to lose a child for what seemed like hours. I also learned what happens when a motorhome cuts over into your lane on a mountain road and you have nowhere to go. We spent over a week in Bass Lake, where the smoke from the wildfires kept things hazy, but I still managed to get a first class sunburn in only one day. The power went out the night before we left as the fires crept closer to Yosemite National Park. The last day of July found us in Reno again, only this time with our kids, who had begged us to take them there for ages.


Marks Wedding

AUGUST gave me a reason to be really thankful for car insurance. After we took on a motorhome last month, we decided to up the ante and take on a buck with our other vehicle. August also gave me a couple weeks to really get our garden in shape. For a first time garden, it was a first class looker! I took so many photos of sunflowers and corn and cucumbers that I think I won't need to this year. I took another five days off to travel with my friend Darca to Baker City for a beautiful wedding of a young man that I had known since he was born. I got to meet my neice for the first time, since my brother lives in Idaho now. From there, it was on to Boise, where I got to spent time with my dear friends, Mike & Melanie. I also visited my college buddy, Misty, who I had not seen since... college! I stayed most of the week with my in-laws and got to spend quality time with my nephews whom I adore. It was the first vacation I'd taken without my husband. My younger three kids went along though. When I got home, I also got to reconnect with a dear friend from High School and meet her kids. We closed up August at a weekend of Family Camp with a lot of friends and a lot of mosquitoes. It was also the weekend we made our first trip to Portland to participate in Nightstrike. It changed us.

SEPTEMBER sent the kids back off to school. I became a mother home ALONE for 3 hours every day. Strange feeling. Within 2 weeks we had two MORE batches of chicks, which just made the cute factor at our place jump by another 45%. Princess D got her beloved harp, my Firstborn started Volleyball and we processed LOADS of corn. Mr Nice Guy, along with fellow players, coaches, cheerleaders and administrators, celebrated the 20 year reunion of his football team's Championship. Many pictures taken, many articles in the newspaper written and a good time was had by all.


PHS 1988 Championship Football Team

OCTOBER sent my husband back to work teaching, and brought a new dog into our lives. My step-daughter turned 18, we had cucumbers coming out of our ears, and we got to follow my Firstborn's Volleyball team all the way to the championship game. While waiting for the school bus, my daughters witnessed an accident that resulted in a death, as well as a grand jury appearance (that hasn't happened yet). We also took another trip to Portland to feed the homeless with the Nightstrike ministry.


"Chase"

NOVEMBER sent us one of the most memorable elections in all of history. Our kids were glued to the TV for so many hours that I was beginning to think they'd become politicians. I eventually turned it off for a week. My Firstborn started Basketball, the kids all enjoyed quite a few days off from school, and my husband and I spent Thanksgiving alone together. We made another Nightstrike Trip and our church got a new Associate Minister, which took a big workload off Mr Nice Guy.

DECEMBER brought so many snow days that it cut short my daughter's undefeated basketball season, cancelled the Christmas programs and it also meant that the kids will be going to school an extra week in June. We planned the year before to take a vacation over Christmas, so we spent a week at Running Y Resort in Klamath Falls in so much glorious snow that I really think I might buy a house in the mountains some day. Whatever S.A.D. I typically fight with, was cured for a week.

New Years eve, had my husband and I again without the kids (thanks to one special Grandma), only this year we spent it with many good friends instead of by ourselves. We toasted to new relationships, renewed committments, refreshed faith and an abundant amount of blessings, miracles and simple things that make our life OURS.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Many thanks

I just want to express my sincere gratitude to all of you who left comments, sent emails and asked for prayers on our behalf since the passing of my Grandfather early this morning. It was such a shock to have him go so quickly. I am so grateful to know he's in a better place, and I am so happy to know his entire family got to see him and love on him before he went to be with Jesus.

I'm going to take a few days off, but I'll be back. The service will be soon - on Wednesday, while most of the family is still here. Thank you again - each and every comment was read the moment it was sent (because of my spiffy service on my Blackjack II) It TOTALLY made my day better.

See you all soon.

Feeling Wordless


Today was a difficult day. My sweet Grandpa is going downhill. He's leaving the hospital tomorrow to go back home where his ENTIRE adoring family will surround him and keep him comfortable until God is able to take his sense of humor take him home. Then, they'll have a party up there with the angels!

I don't really have many words to speak, so I'm going to let an OLD OLD POST from my OLD OLD BLOG (that you may or may not have seen at one point) tell you some words I think are worth repeating.

SEPTEMBER 29, 2007
I love my Grandpa in a way that many grandchildren don't get to enjoy. He has been such an inspiration to me of the kind of grandparent I want to be some day. My Grandpa just loved to spend time at the beach - and camping in his RV. He was one of those types that lived half the year in his RV when he got the chance. (Or, it seemed to be half a year to me, it was always too long!)

He taught me that you could go fishing with hot-dogs and marshmallows. He challenged me to spice life up a bit by daring me to shake dried hot peppers on my pizza. He encouraged me as a child to keep on trying, by blowing on a red light until it turned green. He taught me the true meaning of patience when he was surrounded by all of his grandchildren, none of whom were very quiet, and he smiled that amazing smile anyway.

He showed me what real grief felt like when, on a trip back from the beach with just me in the truck, he replayed the story of his little girl getting hit and killed on the road in front of their house. He showed me what forgiveness and grace looked like, when he would attend family functions even though my Grandmother, who he had long since divorced, was at those same functions. He showed me what true love was like when he cared for my Step-Grandma during the last stages of her fight with cancer. He showed me what genuine concern for others meant when he would have me stay the night at his house when I got off work late, instead of driving all the way home.

He showed me what it meant to not judge others BOTH times I ran out of fuel in my car on the highway and he came to my rescue. He also has showed me in numerous ways that loving your family and spending time with them CAN be a number one priority for a man. I am honored to have grown up as his Granddaughter. I am not ready for him to leave this earth, and I'm not sure I ever will be, but I am ready to honor him forever.



I should mention here, that I AM now ready for him to leave this earth, because now we know that his decision to accept Christ has paved the road for his eternity! The transition right now isn't so fun, but knowing where he will spend forever makes my heart soar.

I really appreciate all the concern and the prayers that have been expressed. Our family is hurting, it is normal, and it is ok. It just hurts really dang bad.

I'll try to post updates to Twitter (see my sidebar!) whenever I can.


Friday, January 9, 2009

I'm glad I took a vacation

Happy New Year!

Day One. Wake up late - pick up children. Go to hospital. Grandpa is sick - not doing well. Feel somewhat CRUDDY, rush home and spend four hours out in wet, windy storm to prepare for impending flood.

Day Two. Thank Jesus that flood is not as big as expected. Feel much cruddier. Send husband to work. Act Dead

Day Three. Feel like I'm dying over and over. Have chest x-rays. Go home with a name for my crud: Bronchitis

Day Four. Act Dead

Day Five. Kids go back to school. Act dead some more. Try to feel better. Do farm chores. Die again

Day Seven. Feel better enough to ask Mr Nice Guy to drive me to see my Grandpa. Whine, complain and make him feel like dirt (my husband, not my Grandpa). Make up. Visit Grandpa in hospital. Rush home. Attend daughter's post-poned Christmas concert. Cry like a baby because it's so "touching"

Day Eight. Send little one off to kindergarten. Shove aside way overdue housework. Drive to the hospital for a few hours. Rush home. Attend other daughter's basketball awards thing.

Day Nine. Up in the wee hours waiting for brother to arrive from out of state. Send kids off to school. Another long day at the hospital. Have weird feeling that our ENTIRE family is in the same location for the first time ever. Smile just a little, but cry just the same.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Word Filled Wednesday Genesis 9:11

GEN 9:11 I establish my covenant with you: Never again will all life be cut off by the waters of a flood, never again will there be a flood to destroy the earth.

Promises, promises, promises. We hear them every day, we see them everywhere. Guarantees that your car will operate properly for a hundred thousand miles or so, or that your makeup won't make your face break out in hives. They'll take it back if it does, so it's not really a promise, just more of a guarantee that they'll do whatever it takes to make you happy and keep you as a customer.
God isn't like that.
He makes a promise. He sticks to it.
He isn't going to accidentally flood the entire surface of the earth next week and call it a manufacturer error. He won't offer us an out of court settlement. There will be no write up in the paper.
He. Does. NOT. FAIL. US!
On the flipside of this covenant with us, He didn't say:
Never again will there be a flood to destroy your entire backyard.
And you know what? I'm ok with that. Every time the waters rise around our acreage, and my backyard becomes a rushing river, I am reminded of God's promises. Sure, I fear that the house will get damp inside, and I worry for the safety of my family, but only momentarily. I always call out my prayer warriors to make sure God is hearing my requests while we are hurridly packing up animals and kids and stuff to keep our toes from getting wet.
It's ok. I know it's only my backyard - not the whole earth. And I'm alright with that!
The best thing about floods? We get to see some pretty magnificent rainbows EVERY SINGLE time. God keeps his covenants.
Thanks for joining me today... for more inspiring posts, please visit:

Monday, January 5, 2009

Not Me! Monday What time is it?

Being Brutally Honest, and Living to Tell About It

1. It was not me, that lost track of the days of the week AGAIN because it's Christmas break and I just pretty much cleared my whole calendar of everything. I mean everything! I even forgot to look at the clock and when 3 a.m. showed it's face on more than three nights last week, I just pretended not to notice.

2. It was not me that lost my wallet on New Year's Eve. It's also NOT ME that refuses to carry a purse anymore because it makes my shoulder hurt... so I stick with only hauling around my wallet and my cell phone... in my pants pockets. Now that looks attractive. I didn't offer to find a neutral looking purse so my husband would be willing to carry it for me. I wouldn't do that, or even think about it. Or keep thinking about it as of this minute.

4. I did NOT authorize cheesecake for breakfast one day last week. It's not my fault that the in-laws backed out on our Christmas get-together and we were stuck with this massive sized cheesecake that we didn't want to share with anyone after all. I also didn't back out on their make-up plan a few days later because they were making a ham. I hate ham.

5. Who on the WORLD brought a case of Mike's Hard Lemonade to the New Years Eve party? It was NOT me. How was I to know that our entire small group from CHURCH (plus guests) would drink up most of it either. What's this world coming to? (And it also wasn't ME that checked to make sure that nobody had more than one either. I'm not obsessive or nosey - not in the least)

5. I also did not spend the last three days holed up in my recliner working off the effects of bronchitis and actually ENJOY getting to do that so I could play around with more blog designs for my backacherdesigns blog. I also didn't just throw in a shameless plug. Good grief! What's wrong with me?

6. I am NOT laughing at the most of you who will look BACK UP my list and see that I did two number fives, and realize you didn't even catch it. You're tired too, aren't ya? Either that or you took two Hard Lemonades and you're not telling me.

7. And last but certainly not least, I did NOT tell my friend over instant messenger that I coughed (remember the bronchitis?) and then swallowed - which caused her gag reflex to kick in big time just because of my disgusting storytelling. Sorry 'bout that friend... I'm not like that in real life and I feel bad if you really did throw up. And wet your pants.

For more public humiliation therapy, head on over to MckMama's place. If you can handle it.


Saturday, January 3, 2009

I Have Beautiful Lungs

Remember that bad sick feeling I've been having, that got worse after several HOURS of playing around in the rain for our false alarm HUGE flood? (It got up there, but not nearly as close as they were forecasting, thank you Jesus!)

Well, I went to see a doctor tonight, at the PUSHING of my Mother, who is not generally pushy, just... she likes to tell you her thoughts and expects you to follow her ideas. That's not pushy, that's called... um... well, she CARES, ok people? And if you care about her, you do what she suggests. It's always just a suggestion anyway. I can take it or leave it. I usually leave it.

Yeah right.

So, I guess she "heard" somewhere that I said I felt like I was breathing through a sock (eww, gross) and she SUGGESTED that I get off my dairyair derryerre derierre... behind and take myself to the doctor to see why I was feeling the feelings I was feeling. (I'm in a mood, just watch)

Anyhoo, so I promised my loving mother (who was on the way to visit my Grandpa in the hospital again) that I would promptly go take care of myself as soon as I got off the phone.

I tried. I called the doctors office and asked if I could squeak in a teeny tiny appointment to have someone listen to my sore breathing apparattus for just a minute or give me a strep swab or something. "Nope. But we can make an appointment for you on Tuesday!"

Great.

"Well," I said, "I'm sortakinda having a hard time breathing and I'm not sure I can wait until Tuesday."

Ladies and gentlemen, she laughed at me! AT ME?? Then she giggled her way through explaining the hours and directions to Urgent Care and bid me good bye.

Since my chest was burning whenever I breathed, I decided to go for it. I put on three shirts, a coat, scarf, gloves and my boots and went to find my husband. I forgot where he said he went, but I was in luck, because he was right outside. I'd go ask him for a ride, he'd have pity on me, rush me to the doctor and I'd be back in time to make dinner! Hooray!

BUT - nobody told him that when his pathetic looking wife walks outside and makes neck slicing "cut it off" motions while he was splitting wood (with the noisiest wood splitter on the PLANET, on the wettest, soggiest, heaviest rounds of gnarly walnut in the WORLD) that he'd need to shut it off and listen to her before she froze to death. She (being me) didn't know it was hitting the low 30's and that ice was starting to form on things when she walked out the door. HAVE NO FEAR, I DID NOT FALL AND INJURE MYSELF! This is not that kind of story!

Needless to say, he proceeded to continue his work (and his sweating, and his grunting and groaning, and his stacking, and his splitting, and his stacking) while he enjoyed the company of me standing there watching him. I guess he likes that. I didn't. My own blood was icing up in my veins even while running a slight fever. I was about to take HIS temperature as he was bent over picking up more wood when his parents showed up. His Mom kept me company for a few more loooong minutes and tried to have a conversation with me over the sound of the antique gas-powered wood splitter. My own breath started to freeze to my face, so I pulled out my cell phone, tapped out a text message and waved it in his face. IT WORKED! He looked shocked and after turning off the splitter he made some sort of hasty agreement to help his parents (they were moving his sisters belongings around again) and THEN told them he needed to run me to a doctors appointment first. Nice save buddy, nice save.

Half an hour later I was walking into Urgent Care. Amazingly, nobody recognized me. They must have some kind of turnaround in that clinic or something. The doctor saw me rather quickly, which was a nice surprise. Then, checked out everything that needed checked out, and then he sent me for x-rays.

WHAT? I don't need x-rays, just shove that extra long cotton swab down there and tell me if I need some medicine!

Ok, so I went down to get chest x-rays. Now, of ALL the x-rays I've had in my life, I've never had chest x-rays. I had NO clue how those worked. Would I have to lay down? I was briefly glad that I wore a sports bra, because if I had to lay down, I could get away with wearing my "non-metal undergarment" and wouldn't have to explain what those shadowy things were in my armpits after they took the picture. Oh, those are just growths doc, no further testing necessary (Good GRIEF!)

Too bad. I had to take off EVERYTHING waist up, and put on a cute little half-robe. The nice girl allowed me to take two half-robes, so I slung one around front, and one around back and called it a two-fer.

I KNEW the x-ray tech would recognize me. I'm a frequent flier, only this time I was flying a different plane. I got lucky, he didn't recognize me in my smashing new outfit. (He probably only knows me by my extremeties, and honey, a chest x-ray does NOT constitute extremities!

Anyway, it wasn't so bad. I had to stand up, give an x-ray board a BIG SQUISHY HUG and then do a couple more really weird poses and then I was done. I went out and told my husband that the tech had to "lift me up" to get the right chest shots and I got quite a fun reaction. Then he got an even more fun reaction when I started coughing really hard after laughing at him. Serves me right for being a big liar to my devoted (sweaty, covered in sawdust) husband.

The doctor came back after awhile, informed me that I have GERD (huh??) which is completely unrelated to my current issues (but does answer that problem I've been having where I constantly feel the need to swallow), and he gave me The Purple Pill and then said my lungs were beautiful. They were completely clear and all I have is a doozy of a case of bronchitis to work myself out of. He gave me more symptoms of pneumonia to watch out for and sent me with a "back up prescription" for antibiotics in case I think I need them and directions to avoid housework for the next 25 years and get plenty of rest. YES SIR!

Things sure have changed at the clinic. I went in expecting one thing and came out with medicine for something I didn't go in for, and got new photographs too. I'm not feeling pretty right now, but it's nice to know my lungs are!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Our bacon has been saved!

Wait, where did that phrase come from anyway? Save our bacon? I have some bacon, but I certainly don't want to save it very long. Well, not unless it's frozen.

I went out and did a little photography prayer walk and God decided he was going to slow things down a bit. When I came back inside, and checked they hydrograph thingamabob, it showed that the river will not top that 20 foot mark! Woot woot! Right now it's at 19.22, and let's hope it stays that way :)

Ok, so here's what I saw outside... this image is similar to the one at the FAR end of my blog... you know... wayyyy down there at the end.
Only this one has more water and less fog.

Chase wanted to know where the Jessie went. That's where the kennel usually sits.

WHOOSH! You can almost hear the rushing water in this picture. Our goats aren't leaning on THAT fence today!

Then...

The view back towards the shop and the road. That cedar tree to the far FAR right, in the background is the tree we pulled the cat out of at 11 pm last night.

This is a better view of the island with the cedar tree on it. Silly cat! What were you thinkin?


The river is actually supposed to flow behind that treeline in the distance. I think it got lost!

Whew, I'm tired and need to rest my burning lungs. The really good news? God brought the sunshine out today!

Happy *cough* New Year?

Wow, this new YEAR has started off with such a bang that we lost a day. I think it was yesterday that we lost, I'm not really sure. A New Years Eve party with friends old and new, was like reliving the days from my twenties where we'd stay out till all hours just having a good time. Nothing bad or anything, just FUN! We rolled in at FOUR A.M. after having a silly ol' time with church friends. Yes, people, church friends are fun!

Somewhere before noon I learned my Grandpa wasn't feeling so hot. Neither was I, but I wasn't in the hospital, so I gathered myself together and rounded up my children from various locations in the valley and we went to the hospital. I also learned there was a huge storm coming, but that would have to wait. I tell ya, getting to see my Grandpa was such a blessing. The last two times he'd tried to come see me just didn't work out, so there was no way I was going to miss being in town and not spending some time with him. He's not waking up much, has been fighting pneuomia, a staph infection and who knows what but that didn't really matter. I think he knew I stopped in. He opened his bright blue eyes a few times, fluttered his eyelids, and made a funny grin when I whispered to him that he had messy hair. I squeezed his hand three times in our traditional "I. LOVE. YOU." language, and he squeezed back. His skin was so soft and his face was newly shaved. He was still Grandpa to me, only crumpled up in his bed like one of my little boys. I love him.

In the back of my mind all the storm warnings were swirling around that we'd been hearing on the news. I didn't want to leave the hospital, but a nurse came by and said we had to leave for an hour so they could put in a PICC line. I think it was God's way of sending me home to take care of things here. We arrived home an hour later to dark clouds, blowing winds and a LOT of rain. We had time to make dinner and talk about a game plan before we headed out into the dark to start moving things to higher ground.

Thankfully it wasn't cold and pouring the whole time. It was windy though! First we flipped the trampoline. One year, we had to recover it from halfway across the field and that wasn't fun. Flipping it isn't easy, and especially when a huge wind gust hits it right in the middle of things! After that we relocated the outside dog (not the nice, warm dog curled up in the house, no not that one) to the front yard. We tied him to a tree because his kennel proved to be more of an umbrella sitting in a field. Wind gusts have picked that thing up and carried it away too. We moved the kennel to a more secure area on higher ground and then relocated the goats into their temporary housing. Thanks dog! The goat field is the first to get wet when it floods, then... the rabbits got their hutch buttoned down and filled with straw to keep the wind and rain off of them.

Somewhere in all of this, our neighbor showed up to see how high the water was, and it was already crossing our property. I'll try to take pictures later, because I can't find the ones I took from years earlier. Turns out, our cat ran from the dog and was on the opposite side of the new little stream coming across the field. It was only half-boot high, so Mr Nice Guy led me across to the island field to rescue my cat out of a tree. I shuddered when I saw an opossum scuttling between the rows of brussels sprouts to find dry land. Sorry buddy, you're on your own! We figured we had about 10 minutes before we would have a hard time crossing back over. Silly kitty used up nine of them. The water was another 2 inches higher on our way back and moving fast. I used my dose of adrenaline to get the rest of the carport cleaned up and put things out of the way. I forgot how sick I had been feeling earlier.

Four hours later, after locking all the chickens in, putting stray hens away and removing all sorts of odd floatable objects in the yard that were previously covered in snow, we headed indoors. The kids were briefed again on where to go if there was a fire or if that big tree finally fell on the house (sheesh, nothing like prepping for nightmares!), we stocked up on firewood, made sure the candles were in place and then we snuggled down for a long night of miserable sleep. As I write, all my babies are still sleeping, except my eldest left her bed during the night to check on the animals, no doubt, and is now camped out on the couch. Mr Nice Guy had to head in to work, and the river hasn't crested yet. It was expected to crest within the next half hour, but it's taking its sweet time. It has stopped raining for the moment, and the snow level has fallen which may save our bacon. The predicted flood level is currently at 20 1/2 feet, and anything over 20 feet means our laundry room gets REALLY wet! Just under 20 feet means our home is completely surrounded by water but nothing gets seriously damaged except the lawn. Right now, it's slowly approaching, and we're done doing laundry because the drain field is covering up.

Well, I know only my die hard fans read this far, so if you're still with me, just know that I am grateful for prayers right now. Being outside in the wet, windy air last night made whatever symptoms I'm having get really bad. I described it to someone earlier like it felt as if I was trying to breathe through a fleece sock! Yum! I'm glad it's a clean one at least. haha! *cough cough* Happy New Year! I'll hopefully post some pictures later, either that or the newspaper will.