Sunday, March 31, 2013

Down Time

 
Every cowboy needs some down time.  This little buckaroo was just chillin'.  Guess he doesn't need  much in his life, besides his boots and his hat.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Caught Snuggling

 
The Husband came home from work and lied down on the floor. Kimble took that as an opportunity to empty his bed of all his blankets, pillows, and toys. He brought them all to his daddy and they snuggled on the ground together until it was dinnertime.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Trampoline Kids

 
I sure am glad that we Santa got the kids a trampoline for Christmas.  Everyone loves it, and so do I.  It's a perfect energy-user for wiggly kids.
 

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Kids on Spring Break

We had a few beautiful days, during spring break, yesterday being one of them.  I took the kids to the school park to play.  I think they were happy to do something besides "sit around the house and do nothing", which is what they say when I tell them that they can't play with any electronics, but need to use their imaginations.
 
 
Even though I took Kimble potty before we left, and even though he was adamant that he didn't have to go potty, as soon as we got to the park...I saw this:

 
 
This next picture shows the kids just chillin', as I was talking with another parent, right before we left the park to go home for dinner. I like the picture.
 

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Potty Training

Potty training isn't always fun. It doesn't always happen quickly.  It often causes frustration and a desire to give up.  But it needs to be done.  Now that Kimble is off the medicine that made him pee constantly, it is much easier to potty train him.  Spring break may be busy for us, but it's also a good time to train Kimble because I have a few other hands around the house that can help him if I am busy.  So we've been focusing on training Kimble, and it's going really well. He even stayed dry throughout church, which is a huge obstacle when potty training!
 
He likes to try to put  on his underwear by himself.  He still has trouble with some fine motor developments, so dressing himself is difficult, but he does well with trying and we help with the rest.
 

After he goes potty, he runs to the kitchen and opens the freezer so he can get four chocolate chips,
  which is his reward for going potty.

 
One other thing I have to add, is that I call Kimble's underwear his "panties".  I do it mostly because The Husband is greatly opposed to that, and wants to call them shorts, but I get a secret thrill when I hear Kimble say "I got my panties on, momma!"  Ha Ha. I can hear Heath grimace every time. I think it's funny, and will continue calling them panties at every opportunity.
 

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Mr. Fix It

I knew my sewing machine needed to be cleaned, but it wasn't until it started acting all wonky and disturbed, that I knew I'd better clean it or it'll behave worse.  It's like my machine suffers from multiple personalities or something, or perhaps it thinks it is a "backwards" day, where everything I tell it to do, it does the opposite (my kids are always trying to have "backwards" days).  My machine will go backwards when I tell it to go forwards, it'll go zigzag when I want a straight stitch, and it'll leave the needle up when I want it down.  These are all signs that my computer has gone wonky and the machine needs cleaned and oiled.  That's where my husband steps in.
 
He  performs surgery on it, gets everything nice and tidy, then we test it to make sure it's working right.  After that, he puts it back together again. What a great husband I have!
 
 
Here is a picture of the inside, before it was cleaned.  Lots of lint and strings and dirt that keeps the machine from performing optimally.
 
 
Now my machine is working great, which is fantastic because I've got a lot of sewing to do!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Flat Iron Curls


 
I plan on getting a curling iron to help me recreate the curls that my hairstylist did, but to test out my new knowledge on how to use a flat iron to curl my hair, I tried it out.  I like the result, and now I'm excited to try it out with a curling iron!


Sunday, March 24, 2013

A in Spelling

 
Kolby brought home a very important piece of paper on Friday!  It was a spelling test, which he got an A on!  This is a huge accomplishment for Kolby. We are all so proud of his hard work!  To celebrate, we made him some special brownies.  Kolby got to lick the spoon and bowl, while Kimble and Kennedy licked the beaters.
 

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Dance Party

Spring Break officially began after school yesterday, and so we celebrated.  After dinner, we had a Dance Party.  Growing up, my siblings and I would always have dance parties. We'd turn up the music really loud and dance together in the living room and throughout the house.  I remember one time, after I had graduated from college, my younger siblings and I found ourselves home on a Saturday night, with our parents away for the weekend. We turned up the music loud and danced and sang. It was great fun, until we heard someone knocking on the door loudly.  Apparently, our neighbor didn't like what we were doing, and thought that we "children" were not behaving ourselves while home alone.
 
Anyway, I have passed on that tradition to our kids. We love to have dance parties.  Kimble was so excited!  We found some music and danced and danced and danced. We were dancing so much, that my camera phone couldn't focus.
 
 
We turned on this cd of music  that my dad had made for me, back in the year 2000.  It was great fun singing along to all my favorite oldies music, and the kids had no idea what the songs were.  They did, however, recognize a few Elvis songs.

 
Keaton did  some breakdancing, which Kimble tried to copy the rest of the night, and we flickered the lights on and off to create a strobe light. We also formed a conga line, which Kolby especially loved.
 
 
Conga line Caboose: Kennedy!
 
 
We danced for about 90 minutes. It was a great introduction to our Spring Break!

Friday, March 22, 2013

New Hairstyle

 
I got my hair trimmed up this week.  To help with the transition of growing it out, I asked my hairstylist, Ben, to show me how to create soft curls.  This is the picture I took when I left the salon.  I loved it, although it was just a bit "unkept" for me. I was eager to go home and give the look a try myself.  The next day, I tried...and failed.  My hair turned out so bad that I had to re-wash it and dry it to fix all the errors. Then I just kept it straight. I'll try another day.  Hopefully it just takes practice.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Hobbit

 
The kids were so excited to watch The Hobbit.  They've been listening to a "book on tape" for a while now, and were eager to connect the spoken words to the visual effects of the screen.  I popped  some popcorn for them to enjoy with the show, and it was even on a school night!  For that, their excitement doubled.  Kennedy is lacking from the picture because she wasn't interested in watching the movie. I wasn't either, so we went downstairs and sewed together until the movie was done.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Morning

 
Kimble is my little shadow.  He likes to be in the same room as me, so when I get ready in the morning, he'll sit on the bathroom counter and watch me.  Sometimes he plays cars and trains on the countertop, and other times he sings songs with me.  Occasionally he'll try to put on makeup as well.

 
However, he usually leaves when I turn the hair dryer on.  "It's too noisy, momma!  Shhhhh!" and he'll close the door behind him as he leaves the bathroom.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Drive-Through Visit

 
Our Oma and Pappy came through for a visit!  Their road-trip brought them our way, and we were so happy to have them stop over for the night.  We also confirmed our plans to stay with them for a handful of days this July, and the kids are so excited to live the farm life again, even for a short time.
 

Monday, March 18, 2013

Escaped Chicken


We sure do love having our chickens.  Sometimes I forget about them, because it's mostly Kamy and Keaton's responsibility to care for them, but we get eggs everyday and they love being visited.  Yesterday we discovered one lone chicken roaming the yard.  She had escaped the pen, although I still don't know how.  She was happy to be held, and then Keaton put her back in the pen.  We love our chickens!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Boutique



Yesterday I hosted a Ladie's Boutique.  I organized it as a way for my friends and I to go through our closets and sell our clothes, purses, shoes, jewelry, and other accessories in a way that would benefit everyone.

Our items were in good quality, but weren't worn or used for whatever reason.  They were the wrong size, color, style, or we just didn't like it anymore.  Everyone priced their own items, with nothing being over 10 dollars.

Then, we shopped.  My living room was transformed into a large closet!  We bought each other's items and came home with new things for our wardrobe, plus we got money for the stuff other people bought from us!  It was a great idea, I just wish more people had come to shop! I still have a lot of stuff leftover.  However, I got enough money to get my haircut again, which is always a good thing.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Caught!

 
This little escapee was discovered at 10pm, hours after he had been put to bed for the night.  He was enjoying his own helping of ice cream, straight from the carton, with a big spoon 3 sizes bigger than his mouth.

He sure was happy about his crime!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Circa 1988

 
Yup. That would be me. Probably 11 years old.  I curled my hair myself.  I picked out the dinosaur sweatshirt.  I was super fashionable.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Cattle Roundup

 
Kolby's scouting activity tonight brought a few new activities for him to learn.  Ropin' Cattle.  He had a blast doing it.  I absolutely love the little stick-bull that they used.  Kolby is now anxious to put his skills  to use this summer, at Oma and Pappy's house.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Saboteur

Saboteur:  Someone who purposefully commits obstruction of property or obstruction of normal operations.

Normal Operations:  Chores.  ie: loading the dishwasher and starting the cleaning process.

Dishwasher: (1) a modern household appliance that rinses, cleans, and dries dishes using heat, steam, water, and specific dishwasher soap.  (2) A person who cleans dishes.

The problem herein lies in the person who has the chore of the kitchen this week.  Said person tries everything they can to eliminate chores, responsibility, and positive attitudes.  Instead, this person becomes the saboteur by adding liquid soap to the equation.   A perfect recipe for mom to have to clean up, versus the kid whose chore it is to do so.



Tuesday, March 12, 2013

13 Going on 30


I am now the mother of a teenager.  Miss Kamyren turned 13.  Lucky for me, she is not your average teenager.  At least, not yet, and I hope she doesn't change.  She is a lovely young lady who tried to help out as much as possible. She has a lot of responsibility at home, and always handles it with ease.

She is babysitting more for other families.  She is in concert choir at school. She likes to help cook.  She longs to be older.  For her birthday, she got two dresses, two cardigans, three camis, two shirts, 4 pairs of socks and a curling iron.  She was thrilled with her loot!

Kamy is just a few inches shorter than me, but she wears a bigger shoe size now.  I often catch her playing with my jewelry, or longing to wear my makeup.  She often compliments me on how I dress or how I look, eyeing my clothing and wanting to borrow it.  As flattered as I am with that, I tell her that my size is still much bigger than her size 0.  For now, though, I realize that her approval of how I look will probably change in the upcoming years!

For dinner she wanted Italian Mac & Cheese and for dessert, cherry pie.  We had planned to watch the movie 13 Going on 30 as well, but couldn't find it in our movie drawer.  I know we have it, so when we find it, we'll watch it together.  I love my sweet teenager!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Felt Flower

 
Some days I wear a hat because I'm hiding my terrible hair.  Other days, I wear a hat because I know my hair will turn terrible throughout the day. For example, on this day, I wore a hat because I was going to be outside, and it was windy and snowy.  A hat would keep everything looking manageable.  However, after I put on my hat, I realized that one of my felt flowers would add the perfect touch of decoration, so I clipped it on.  Suddenly, my hat-wearing reasons changed from a reason to hide wonky hair, to a reason to feel cute and trendy!  Why hello there lovely felt flower!  Why didn't I think of you before now?

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Kamy's Girlfriend Party

For Kamy's birthday, she requested to have an afternoon of fun with two of her girlfriends.  She wanted to go bowling and get ice cream afterward.  She enjoyed getting her hair curled, so she could be pretty for her outing.
 
 
We picked up her two girlfriends, Madeline and Brittany, and because it was snowing outside, we skipped the ice cream and just had lunch. Kamy chose Wendy's.

 
Then they put on their bowling shoes and began bowling!  They laughed and giggled through a few games, none of them doing very well, but they had  a great time. Plus, they had cosmic bowling going on, which makes it more fun!


 
I'm glad Kamy and her friends had a great afternoon together.  It was fun to watch from the sidelines.


Saturday, March 9, 2013

Echo Results

This appointment was full of good news.  During the six months since we have been seen, Kimble's heart has continued to make great strides in growth and function.  So much so, that everything looks really good for the surgery that they want to do, which is to reverse The Glenn.  The Glenn surgery was done when he was 7 months old, and it re-routed half his body's bloodflow to bypass the right side of the heart and go directly to the lungs.  This puts extra pressure and workload on the left heart, as well as the pulmonary arteries and his lungs.  However, because Kimble's right heart wasn't developed at birth, this is what needed to happen if Kimble was going to live.

During the time since he was 7 months old, and really since birth, his heart has grown significantly.  What was once an unformed right ventricle is now  relatively within normal size limits, and is pumping like a champ.  Likewise, his tricuspid valve and pulmonary opening (he doesn't have a pulmonary valve) are functioning as well as can be, despite their defects.  The best news of all, however, is that his tricuspid valve is letting through a normal amount of bloodflow through to the right ventricle.  This is a huge development, as it's always been "that faulty tricuspid" that was the root of all Kimble's heart defects, and has been the biggest limiting factor in what his surgeons can do for Kimble.

All of this gives a big thumbs up to his team of doctors that Kimble's heart will be able to handle the entire body's blood supply.  By reversing The Glenn, Kimble's heart would then function just like a normal heart would, and although Kimble still has heart defects that are limiting, the point is that his heart would be able to manage well enough, and hopefully through Kimble's life, it  would continue to grow and adapt to the demands placed on it, even with the defects.

The plan is to have another heart cath/MRI in early June.  After those results, his team of doctors will tell us that we are good to go, and we'll schedule the surgery.  When the surgery will happen, whether it's later this year, or next year, we don't know yet.  It's all to be decided after the cath/MRI.

Now, for my thoughts and feelings.  I'm really happy and positive about this surgery.  I feel, for the first time since before Kimble was born, that he is going to survive this next surgery.  That may be surprising to you, for me to say, but with every procedure and surgery that Kimble has had to undergo, I've always had a terrible feeling of doom, like this would be the thing that would take his life.  Feeling like your child isn't going to survive childhood is a heavy weight to bear, but in all honesty, that is how I've felt.  Now, I feel like that weight is lifted.  I'm encouraged by the growth and development that Kimble's heart has had, and I don't feel terrified for this upcoming surgery!

We have another appointment scheduled for June, along with said cath/MRI up in Denver.  As for now, Kimble is happy and so ENERGETIC and is doing great. 

One more positive thing came out of the appointment, and that is that we can stop giving Kimble one of his daily medicines, which releases extra fluid from his lungs, to keep him from getting pneumonia and help minimize that fluid that isn't squeezed out with every pump of his heart, which his heart can't do because of the re-routing.  This medicine, as a result, makes him pee constantly for about 3 hours post dosing.  It has made potty-training very difficult for me.  However, we can now stop giving him the medicine.  You know what that means?  It's undie time!!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Heart Update

Kimble had his scheduled echo again.  It has been 6 months since he had a heart appointment, which was a cath/MRI up at The Children's Hospital.  At that time, his team of doctors had decided to postpone the surgery they were planning for, because Kimble's heart wasn't ready for it.  It needed time to grow more, and function better, and so the surgery was delayed.  They scheduled his next echocardiogram for six months out.  Six months!  That's the longest Kimble has ever gone between appointments.  It seemed forever.

I was anxious to find out if there were any changes to Kimble's heart growth, and what the plan was going to be for this year, surgical-wise.  So it was with excitement and nervous flutters, that Kimble and I headed off to his appointment.

 
 

First, we got settled in the room.  I selected the movie Cars for Kimble to watch.  He relaxed in the bed and waited for it to begin.  He's such a funny guy.



Kimble is use to the process.  He sits still, the technician does the ultrasound (whom we have almost every time and is very friendly and personable), and although it's hard to sit still for the 30 minutes or so that it takes, he usually does very good.




Sometimes I lie right next to him on the bed. Sometimes I sit at the foot or head of the bed to distract Kimble, if need be.  Other times, he does so well, that I sit in the corner and read a book!  This time, I did a bit of all three.



After the echo is done, it is sent to Dr. Brames to look over.  We go into an exam room where Kimble gets weighed, measured, and tested for blood pressure and pulse ox.  He also gets an EKG, and he likes to help remove all the stickers from his body, when it's over.


Then we play and dance in the exam room and read stories and he eats goldfish crackers, while we wait for the doctor to come in.  Finally, Dr. Brames comes in. He is great with Kimble, and plays games with him as he listens to his heart, lungs, and basically checks him out.


Then...we discuss the plan for Kimble.  It's good news!!  Stay tuned for the next post!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Pocket Pal Process

I like to take pictures, as I sew.  The creative process is fun to see.  Plus, I usually text pictures to my sister Sharon, for her critique, approval, or suggestions.
 
I just showed you pictures of the finished Pocket Pals, but here is how they were made.  I started with the original princess doll that I made Kennedy two years ago.  From that finished doll, I cut out an estimated pattern.  From right to left, you see how I adjusted each one.  The first one, with pink hair (I just choose random fabrics and pieces that are scraps...hence the pink hair), was too short and fat.  The next one had too much head length...and on and one it went until I felt like I got the proportions right.
 
 
Then I took the same type of measurements, and made a boy...only, I hated how it turned out.  I texted Sharon and told her I was giving up.  I couldn't get them to look cute.  She told me to keep on trying.  The cape looked all wrong, and when I penciled in the "mask", and took a picture, we realized that he looked like Harry Potter in a cloak.  He just needed...

 
...a lightning bolt scar!  Ha!  It IS Harry Potter!  So funny.

 
Well, I kept looking at the boy doll, and realized that his cape would look better without straps, so I pinned them back.  Plus, he needed a felt mask, not one that was stitched on.  So I pinned that in place too.  Ahhh, now he's looking better!

 
So with those changes, I made another superhero boy.  This one looked better, but what was funny about this next picture, is that they looked like Batman and Robin.

 
So, with the patterns good, I made a boy and girl doll, complete with stitched faces and flowers and capes.  Looking good!


So that is the process of how I create my patterns.