Sunday, November 9, 2008

..and then there is Lauren

After the family trip to Bear Lake, Lauren flew to Seattle to go to EFY all by herself. She had a fantastic summer! July 23rd was a big day. Her post-chemo hair was finally long enough to pull back in a ponytail, it was her first day in 10+ years when she didn't have to take a steroid, and a week before she got braces put on her teeth. Little did we know, it was the last day she would feel very good for a long time.

Lauren was scheduled for right femoral artery bypass surgery on her leg on Aug 6th... supposedly a 2 day hospital stay and a short recovery. Well, she has spent 38 days in the hospital during 7 different admissions over the past 3 months. While other kids are going to school, Lauren has missed 80% of schooldays but finds time to do homework on the 5th floor at Children's Memorial Hospital.

After leg surgery, cellulitis, C-Diff, lots of pain, a colonoscopy, several episodes of dehydration, pancreatitis, lymphedema, blood transfusions, many gastrointestinal problems, multiple antibiotics, eosiniphilic enteritis, and analyzing all kind of bodily fluids, she still smiles and tries to get through each day.

Blair and Bear Lake

Blair is the kindest, most unselfish person I know. He always is looking for the good in everyone and is forever the optimist.

For those of you who know Blair well, you know that water outings are not his favorite thing. But when you are at a lake this beautiful, even he couldn't resist. He spent his birthday riding around on a Sea-Doo and even took a turn driving the boat. Just goes to show you are never too old to try something new.

Friday, November 7, 2008


You would be hard-pressed to find any 11 year old girl who works as hard and long as Megan does. Blair's project of burying the sump pump line took many hours of hard work and Megan stayed with him for as long as she was allowed.

The best part of the Bear Lake trip for Megan was playing with her cousins, but here is a brief moment when she was enjoying the boat rides.

Megan is awesome. She made the 6/7 grade basketball team as a 6th grader. She certainly wasn't chosen for her height. But the coach loved having Megan on the team. She just "gets it." Not to mention her amazing shooting ability.

Sunday, November 2, 2008


Road Trip - packing, unpacking, different bed every night, hours and hours of togetherness, driving and driving and driving some more, only periodic whining, lots of sightseeing, and great memories!!

Do you know how much flatland there is between Chicago and Utah? There are also tons of working windmills, antelope and prairie dogs. We passed acres and acres of corn as well.
Nathan was studying state capitals in school, so we tried to hit as many of those as we could. We were grateful to be driving a nice, air conditioned van as we visited several church history sites and learned more about the pioneers.

Mount Rushmore and the Badlands of South Dakota were really amazing. To think they have survived all these years......

We drove through 8 states, clocked over 4,000 miles, ate tons of snack food and finally arrived at our destination in Utah. It was a victory - the keys to success were switching seats often, froot loop necklaces, frequent potty breaks, staying wide awake while tensely watching our 15 year old navigate semi trucks and construction zones, and having 6 people with a great sense of humor.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Our May Birthdays

Nathan was baptized on May 25th.
The only part he was nervous about was the water temperature. Blair has been his primary teacher and did a great job of having him prepared for such an important day. His new favorite sport is rock climbing, and he's getting higher each time he tries.

Rachel turned 13 this year. We had a blast taking her to a photo shoot. We can always tell when Rachel gets home - a wave of energy goes swarming through the house. Rachel is all about the trumpet lately. She auditioned for a state band in the beginning of October, and made one of the first few chairs, had a big jazz band solo, started private lessons, and is in the pit band at school for Annie the musical.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

April 24, 2008

So, I had another birthday and am still 40 something.

Blair (my amazing husband) took me away for the weekend to Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. Who would have ever thought I would be visiting Wisconsin? It is a quaint little town and we had a great time.

For 3 months, Lauren used the kitchen table for all her schoolwork. It is a bit lonely now. She returned to school Feb 26th and has only missed 2 days of school for biopsies since then. By the way, the biopsies have been perfect and she feels wonderful. By early March, she was all caught up and ranked #4 in her class of 582 students. Go Lauren!! The steroid dose is getting lower each month and she is hoping to be off of them soon.

She got her driver's permit in honor of my birthday and is soooooo excited!!

Rachel loves it when I straighten her hair - it takes 45 minutes, but she is so happy when it is done. She does all kinds of amazing things, but this month won a $400.oo savings bond for taking 1st place in a local spelling bee.

Megan is the one with her back to the camera the night of her 5th grade band concert. She had the assignment of tuning up the entire band. Can you believe that? She also played many hours of basketball this winter in a league through the high school. She is an awesome point guard!

Nathan is getting anxious for his 8th birthday and has started learning to tie his own tie. It is a bit sad to watch him grow up.

He came home from school one day with a loose front tooth. I wanted to get his 8 year old picture taken with nice teeth, so we ran to the mall to buy him his first suit. We stopped at home for dinner and to take this picture, but the tooth fell out before we made it to the picture place. Oh well, I tried.