Thursday, April 30, 2009

Gazelle Stander

Yesterday we went and had Eli fitted for a stander.  It's called the Gazelle and it's made by SnugSeat.
We are doing a little more research, but I'm pretty sure we will be ordering this one.  Soon! :)
Eli was in a great mood, and did very well in the stander!  I have some video I'd like to share, but I see that blogger doesn't allow you to upload it directly like they used to.  Bummer. 
I'm going to have to figure out another way to add it here.
This is the large size. Too big for our boy!
He'll be getting the medium, and it's green!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Erma Frances

My dear Gram...the most wonderful woman I've ever known...
would have been 87 today!
I'd like to share with you an excerpt from her hand-written autobiography:
In the summer of 1943 "people were moving to the west coast to work in the shipyards and aircraft factories and many other kinds of defense plants.  Jobs were a dime a dozen.  you could walk off one job and go to work somewhere else the same day.  Wages had started to go up some and everyone was going to get some of it"
My grandma lived in Ft. Scott, Kansas with her family.  She was married to a bum...and had to be the breadwinner.  In 1943!  My mom was born in December of 1942 - so here she was with an 8 month old moving to Portland, Oregon on a train.
"...Anyway, that first night on the train, the air-conditioning went out.  The train was packed.  There were people sitting on suitcases, laying in the isles."
My grandma's sister Wilma was with her.  Aunt Wilma and my mom both got very sick on the train.
"It was a miserable trip but we had hopes that things would be better out here.  I was pregnant when we left Kansas.  Just a month or six weeks along.  The evening after we arrived, or the next day, I had a miscarriage."
How heartbreaking!
"We went and got on at Vancouver Shipyard.  We rode what they called cattle cars to work, they were big old busses with a trailer like pulled behind with seats and they were usually full and people standing.  At that time there was still some chivalry left in the world.  Men would give up their seat for a woman sometimes.  Not always."
Can you imagine?  They rode in a trailer behind a bus!
"I swung from a rope more than once across that old Columbia River to work"
"We were in welding school...and I think I went out on production in about three weeks."
Here is my grandma with her welding crew:
(click on the photo to make it bigger)
* * *
My grandma got pregnant right after they got settled in Portland.  She worked until she was about 5 months pregnant.  She ended up having twin boys in April of 1944. 
She said, "I was as big as a barrel before they were born." 
The crazy thing was....SHE DIDN'T KNOW IT WAS TWINS!  I guess the doctor thought he felt two babies, but he could never hear the second heartbeat.  After one baby was delivered and contractions started again...the doctor decided there was another baby in there!
Aaagh!  I can't imagine going to the hospital to have a baby...and going home with two!  They were so poor.  Her husband was an alcoholic and didn't provide at all.  I don't know what would have happened if she didn't have her family that had moved out west to help her!
Her story is incredible.  Good enough to be published in my opinion! :)
There is a story I want to share, but I can't find it right now.
Stay tuned...

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Pretty In Pink

As Spring arrived, I became very bummed that the lady who lived here for 17 years before me never planted anything to give the place some Spring color!
Then, one day while trimming some bushes on the East side of the house, where we will never spend any time for anything I might add, I find tulips popping up.  A week later, Lonnie says, "Have you seen the tulips?  They are a really cool color."  And sure enough...they were!
There are only these three, but I'm thankful for them all the same!
And at the very northeast corner of our house, there is a Peony plant growing.
I can't wait to find out what color IT is!?
But, I can't help but wonder why in the world they were planted on that side of the house!
I purchased two Peony plants last week.  I'm still trying to decide the perfect spot for them out front.
I LOVE flowers.  I LOVE Peonies.
I want to see them as much as possible!  :)

Friday, April 24, 2009

One Big Giraffe!

Welcome to all of you visiting from Lynnette's blog

I'm honored to be the featured blogger today!
I hope you enjoy your peak inside my world.
My sister, Ricky, has been wanting to get Eli this big giraffe for a while now...and two weeks ago she placed the order.  Look what arrived yesterday:

WE LOVE IT!  It's the perfect addition to Eli's giraffe room.
So, today is the perfect day to tell the story of giraffes in our life!
When I was pregnant, I decorated the nursery with Little Suzy's Zoo.  After finding out it was a boy, I thought, " needs to be a little more 'boyish', I decided to use orange, green, blue and yellow as the accent colors in his room.  I love bright colors and was excited to use this citrus palette!
One of the characters in the set was a Giraffe named Patches.  I thought he was cute, and couldn't think of anyone else who collected giraffes or decorated with giraffes, so that became my focus!
I started collecting everything orange and giraffe I could find.
It was a very fun treasure hunt....and I found way more than I expected.
His nursery was adorable:

Life changed forever that night.
Our baby was on a ventilator, we weren't sure if he was going to live.
The Neonatologist that saved Eli's life that night came back to visit us later, and she was wearing a shirt with GIRAFFES on it!  I told her that we collect giraffes for Eli and that it was interesting she had giraffes on her shirt the night she saved him!  She said she went on a trip to Africa and the giraffes were her favorite part!
Kindred spirits, we were!
After two weeks in the NICU here in our community, they decided to LifeFlight him to Seattle Children's Hospital's IICU.  My husband rode on the plane with Eli.  I drove over.
When I got there, I called Lonnie to find out where to go, and
He says, "You want to come in the GIRAFFE entrance - so park in that garage."
I said, "You're kidding?  It's called the giraffe entrance?"
He said, "Yes, that's the main entrance to the hospital."
We thought that was pretty cool!
So, then later that day we went across the street to check into the Ronald McDonald House.
We got room 102, I believe. 
We walked in and put our stuff down, and as I looked around the room, I saw not one, but TWO pictures of GIRAFFES on the walls!
As I shared this story with a christian friend later, she reminded me that it wasn't coincidence!
If we just look for him, we'll see his love for us everywhere!
Ever since then, giraffes pop up all the time, and give comfort in times of need.
Since the hospital has the Giraffe entrance, Giraffe Gift Shop, and whole Giraffe Wing....
their gift shop carries LOTS of giraffes.  So, that is why whenever Eli has to go to Seattle Children's Hospital for anything we always buy him a giraffe!
It's been a wonderful blessing to us to see God in so many details of Eli's life.
Thanks for reading our story!
It means the world to me for people to "get to know" my son!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Hodge Podge

Random pictures and I suffer from a little writer's block.....

Summer foliage is on it's way...
The trees are blooming and sprouting all kinds of interesting things...
MC Hammer pants...
The cool Temari's made by my sister Shiela.
Want to know more about them?  Click here!
Tina, Eli's caregiver, came up with the clever idea to put velcro on the top of her shoes, and the bottom of Eli's, and she walks around the house with him!
I came around the corner of the hallway the other day, and saw this:
My heart skipped a beat and it took my breath away!  To see Eli standing in our living room was shocking!
Amazing!  and. Wonderful!
There was a "movement" to wear orange yesterday while baby Stellan had heart surgery, and so we joined in.  There is an amazing photo gallery of people around the country (and world) wearing orange for Stellan! 
You can see it here:  Orange for Stellan Photo Gallery
Here is my submission to the gallery:
Here are some out-takes from the photo shoot:
And of last Friday, I am now 37.
Really?  How can that be?
But, as my Momma used to say, "better than the alternative!"
I am blessed in so many ways. 
I thank the good Lord for his provisions, his protection, and his priceless gift of salvation!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


We had a lovely Easter dinner at Lonnie's Mom's house.
After dinner it was time for golf.
He IS his father's son!!!!!  They love to watch golf!
I have to admit, after I gave it a chance, I kinda like it, too!
I made this delicious Savory Plum Salad as my contribution to the buffet.
You can find the recipe on my recipe blog:
And Lonnie bought me this beautiful plant for Easter:
The daffodils are from his Mom.  They were part of her centerpiece on our dinner table.

Saturday, April 11, 2009


"Hello, goats!"

"Hey, are you coming to see me?"
"Well, hi there!  You guys are kinda nosy, huh?"
"Ok, maybe A LOT nosy!" 
We live in the country, as most of you know....and there are LOTS of goats around here!
I went on a walk yesterday to specifically take pictures of some sheep and their adorable little lambs....but by the time I got to their field, they were in a back pasture.
I'll try again another day!
For now, enjoy these funny and very curious, nosy goats!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Good Friday

I couldn't see my dogs out the living room window.
That spells trouble.
I go out the front door and holler at them. 
I see Sam standing watch, while Lou Lou is digging!
Dang dogs!
I yell.  They come running.
Lou Lou knows she's in trouble.   She stays at the house.
Sam goes back with me, while I lay something heavy over the hole.
And what to my wondering eyes should appear?
The most amazing looking stick....
It's Good Friday.
I hope you know the significance of the cross!
Many Easter blessings to you all.
Thank you Jesus!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

A Walk In The Park

There is a little park, down by the river that has a nice pathway around it.  When I was pregnant, Lon and I would go for walks on weekends.  It was nice because if I got too tired, we weren't that far from the car!  :)
Once when Eli was still a baby, we were there hanging out in the grass, and the "County Work Release Crew" came to the park for their lunch break.  We packed up and left quickly.  I realize they need to eat somewhere...but a public park?  I thought it was odd.
Anyway, our weather continues to be L OV E L Y, about 75 today!  There is a slight breeze blowing.  The birds are singing, the cats are playing, the dogs are sleeping in the sun, and it really doesn't get any better than this!  Well, maybe having friends over for lemonade or something!  :)
I loved this stroller when I saw it in a magazine.
I had to have it. It doesn't "look" like a wheelchair.
Plus, you could get the side cushions in orange!

Then, summer came and I ordered the umbrella.
This is the best they could do?
It's the goofiest thing you've ever seen, and it doesn't even stay in place!
It's such a pain to use!
Down by the river...
Unfortunately, our walk was cut very short!
This stroller wasn't made for 4x4 trails!
We had some flooding this winter, and the river brought all these rocks up onto the grass in the park!
It blocked the pathway in two spots.
I decided to cut across the grass...only to encounter sticks, branches, rocks, and dried wheel tracks...
I had to pull Eli stroller backwards, and we barely made it through!  Of course our State/County/etc has no money for parks and such, so I don't expect it to be cleaned up anytime soon.
Guess we'll have to find a new park. ;(

Monday, April 6, 2009

Sunshine, Swings, Doggy Love, and Easter Giraffes!?

Mr. Sun finally decided to warm up our valley - and it's currently 70 degrees!
I'm wearing shorts and loving it!
Eli is not wearing pants....and [I hope] loving it.
When Lon came home for lunch today, he took Eli outside to
check out our new swing!
(It was a house warming gift from my step-dad)
Then they sat in the grass. 
 I immediately hollered, "you can't sit in the grass with Eli, the dogs will lick him like crazy!"
Before I could finish the sentence, Sam and Lou Lou were on duty!
Doesn't this look like fun?  LOL!
It is so beautiful out today.  I'm getting ready to take Eli out again.
We have the house windows open, doors open, and
I'm in heaven!  Spring is my favorite season and 70 suits me fine!
Who would ever think you get a GIRAFFE in an Easter Basket at the store!?
Woo Hoo!  I was so excited!  Thanks Animal Planet!
Now, can you find a new manufacturer?  I don't like buying Chinese products....
I've gotta get serious about my boycott!  It will save us a lot of money...
because there will be NOTHING to buy!
But for today, I am thankful for the cute little giraffe puppet
 to add to Eli's collection.  He now has 26 giraffes!
Peanut is getting a little too comfy on Eli's blanket lately!  Sheesh!
H A P P Y    S P R I N G    E V E R Y O N E !!!