Thursday, September 29, 2011

And the next stomach flu victim was.............

..........................Me!  Last night (the 28th) from 6:30pm to 1:30 am.  Then at 2:30 am Nathan got it too!  (And I thought I was going to get some rest after MY episode of illness!  No rest for the weary).

So, who's next?  Place your bets now!!!!!  The winner gets the satisfaction of knowing they were right! (ha ha)

*No one

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Barbershop Festival

Last night Emily participated in a Barbershop (aka:  4-part close harmony) Festival at Northwest Nazarene University's Swayne Auditorium here in Nampa.  There were two professional groups who performed, but the other numbers were performed by High School Students.   Several quartets (and an octet or two) performed, and then there were 3 large group with the male high school students, one with the female hs students, and one combined (over 500 students in all).  It was very enjoyable and Emily had a good time.  She sang in the female and combined groups.  WOW--they sounded FANTASTIC!!!!!!!
(Female Group)

  I wasn't able to get very good pictures because of the lighting (and the fact that I was sitting too far back in the auditorium) but here's one with the male/female High School combined group:
This obviously is not a picture of the whole group...I was trying to zoom in on Emily but this was as close as I could get.  If you look closely on the Right hand side above the date stamp (right above "09"), there is a man with a black jacket and red shirt.  Emily is standing right next to him on the right (second girl above "27").  There was an amazing professional group called "Heavenly"...a quartet of college girls from Sacramento State University.  They did indeed sound Heavenly!  This festival was for groups all around the Greater Boise area...kinda like a Barbershop Regional Festival or something!!!  Very Entertaining, and the High School quartets were very impressive!

Excitement for the week......

Poor Sarah got sick Monday evening with the stomach flu bug that's going around!  She threw up all over me and had to take a bath (and so did I!!!).  According to the other families who've fallen victim, it takes 1 to 2 days to pass to someone else so I'm waiting with baited breath.  Luckily this week the kids have Thursday and Friday off from school so if we can just get through TODAY until 3:30 we'll be good!!!!!!
Poor Sarah!!!! )o:

OK-- so, who do you think the next victim will be?
Leave a comment to vote!!!!!! (ha ha)

~NO ONE (This is MY vote!)
Pinterest......I'm now addicted.  Need I say more?

Nathan started sounding out words this week!  This was SO exciting.  He showed no interest in this before, and seemed to struggle with sounding out all the letters individually.  He also didn't seem to grasp the concept that letters together make a word.  In the past when I tried to help him learn words, he would only name individual letters.  The other day we were working on some homework involving 3-letter words (filling in the missing letters), and on his own he began sounding out each letter and then he said the words!!!!  I was SO excited and so was he!!!!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Orchard Pictures (mentioned in a previous post)

Dean and Emily picking peaches at the Mutual service activity (Church Welfare Orchard):

 Emily and a friend

Monday, September 19, 2011

Past week happenings (and some little miracles, too)

Sunday (Sept 11th):  Chanon spoke in church (he was supposed to speak on Aug 28th with ME, but I was long-winded and took all the time).  The Bishopric forgot to tell him WHEN he was speaking and he got a call before church to make sure he was going to be there.  SURPRISE!  He did a great job (fortunately he'd already had his talk written).  Also, the Youth and Leaders sang an arrangement of "I Know That My Redeemer Lives" (which involved Dean and Emily), and I was the accompanist.  I also taught my first YW lesson today!  (p.s.....Chanon and I finally got callings, which are jobs at church for anyone reading this who is not LDS.......Chanon is the membership clerk, and I am the Assistant Mia Maid Advisor in the Young Women's organization).

Monday (Sept 12th):  Chanon and I wasted a lot of gas and spent the morning on a wild goose chase trying to find out where we were supposed to go to get Idaho Driver's Licenses, and register our vehicles.  First we took a wrong turn and drove for a while (my fault...which actually ended up being the "right" way later).  We did see some nice scenery, though.  I finally said, "I think we went the wrong way", so we turned around and got on the right road.  We drove down the right road too far, though because we couldn't find the address of the location we were looking for.  On the website it said it was going to be a Sheriff's office.  We turned around AGAIN, and found the address, but there was no sheriff's office....only an insurance office.  Evidently the location was changed but no one bothered to update the website!  We finally found the right building (they moved driver license stuff to the MVD.  Imagine that).......only to discover that the MVD office was closed on MONDAYS!!!!!!!!  Chanon had specifically taken the day off so we could get this stuff taken care of, and we couldn't afford for him to take another day off.  Fortunately for us there were some cleaning ladies there, who just happened to be cleaning the front windows, who said we could drive to a small town about 20 minutes away and take care of everything there.  
     So, we hopped back in the car and headed to the little Podunk Idaho town (can't even remember what it was called) on the road we had originally started out on earlier (we should have just kept going and not turned around...would've saved a lot of time).  We found the MVD office in the little town, which I must say was reminiscent of "Mayberry", and we got our new Idaho licenses. (This caused me to panic a little...I didn't want to give up my Arizona license, but we had to surrender them).  I'm a little irritated that here in Idaho you have to renew your license every 4 to 8 years.  They also charge $30 for a 4 year renewal, and $50-something for an 8 year renewal.  Registration is a LOT less in Idaho than Arizona, though, and in the end it's still cheaper here.  
     Anyway, back to the story.  We got our licenses, but by the time we had gotten there originally, it was 11:30.  Lunch hour was Noon to 1:00, and boy do they take their lunch hour seriously, so we were told we'd have to come back after lunch to take care of the registration!!!!  I also discovered that I had forgotten to grab the title to our van, so we had to drive all the way back home to get the title.  We also grabbed a quick bite to eat, and then headed back immediately so we could get there as close to 1:00 as possible (they had informed us that they are very busy on Monday afternoons due to the Nampa/Caldwell MVD office being closed on Mondays...we of course didn't have all afternoon to wait in line since we'd have kids getting out of school at 2:30).  This whole day was craziness, but we were sure grateful to those cleaning ladies at the Nampa/Caldwell MVD who helped us get to a MVD office that was actually open!  If they hadn't been cleaning the windows we would've been "up a creek"!!!!  I hope all that rambling made sense.

Monday also marked  one year since my Dad's passing.  I can't believe it has already been a year!!!!

Tuesday (Sept 13th):  Amy and her science partner worked on a science fair experiment at our house.  They built a paper-mache (how the heck do you spell that?!!) volcano.  Why didn't they use salt dough instead? Because Amy's partner said salt dough would be "too easy".  O.K.....!!!!  Easier maybe, but more sturdy and a lot less messy!!!!!  I had flour paste all over my kitchen.  Lovely.

Wednesday (September 14th):  I had a rehearsal for a music group I am now part of....three vocalists and me (the pianist/accompanist).  One of the vocalists is the song-writer...LOVE her music, and they sound great!

Our house officially rented on this day!  (Took long enough).  The tenant signed the lease today and will move in on October 1st.  This is miraculous because it means we'll have money to cover our bills now.  Every time it looks as though we're not going to have enough money, something happens and money comes from an unexpected source.  Miracles!

Dean, Emily and I had mutual in the evening.  It was a service activity, and we went to the Church Orchard to pick peaches for the Welfare program.  I did take pictures...........on my phone.  I cancelled my mobile email, though, so I texted the pictures to a friend and I'll post them as soon as she emails them to me.

Thursday (September 15th):  My brother, Sterling, married the greatest girl today...Carlie Brown.  Unfortunately, I had to miss it because I didn't have the money to make the trip.  Nor could Dean and Emily miss school due to the school's very strict absence policy (you lose credit if you miss 6 times in a Semester!  I sure hope they don't ever get really sick).

Friday, (Sept. 16th):  This day didn't start out to be the most fabulous of days (it involved going over the budget and the paying of bills....which usually isn't a big deal.  UNLESS it appears that there isn't going to be enough money to cover expenses and this was one of those times).  I get really frustrated, for obvious reasons, when I don't think I'm going to have money for food and gasoline.  One of the bills that HAD to be paid was the hospital bill.  Allow me to backtrack a few months to early June, 2011:

Nathan got sick, and then Sarah got sick several days later.  Nathan got better, but Sarah did not and when she started to look a little "bluish" I took her to the doctor.  Turns out she had pneumonia and ended up in the hospital for 3 days.  Flagstaff Medical Center was WONDERFUL!  The doctors and nurses took really good care of Sarah and were so sweet with her.  The problem?  We were between jobs and had no insurance!!!

 Well enough to go home after 3 1/2 days in the hospital!
 In the car ready to go home, and still on oxygen!
I had been in the hospital for three days in December 2009 which resulted in medical bills totaling over $14,000 (we had really good insurance at the time, though, which paid most of it, so it wasn't too big of a deal).  Needless to say, knowing how much MY bills had been a year and a half ago made me extremely worried to get Sarah's bill, and for good reason.  The hospital bill alone ended up being over $15,000.  To try to make a long story short, we ended up on a monthly payment plan through the hospital.  Also, we were told that if we sent in the requested information we might qualify for assistance from the hospital due to our financial circumstances (I, of course, sent in the required info).  As I was preparing to pay the month's installment on Friday, I kept having a feeling I should call the hospital billing department first because I hadn't heard anything from the hospital and it had been a month.  I also didn't get a "bill" from them this month.  I did make the phone call, and found out that the hospital decided to write off and absorb 100% of our bill!  Supposedly a letter was sent out but I never got it.  I burst into tears at the news, of course (the poor lady on the phone probably thought I was psycho!  At least she's going to send me out another letter!  I think I might frame it.).  Another miracle, and the timing made me appreciate it all the more!

Saturday, (Sept. 17th):  It was exactly one year ago on this day that I knew we'd be moving.  The past year has been insane, and scary, but so far it has been worth it!  It has also been very faith promoting, and was a huge growing experience!  Hard to believe sometimes that we actually left Flagstaff, and that I live in Idaho!  I was feeling a little homesick this week, so here's a photo tribute to Flagstaff:

Our house:
 I miss Safeway!  )o:
Last year's Elementary School.......great memories!
 Church building I went to most of my life:
 House I grew up in (until I was 13) on Wayman St (The old "swingy" mailbox is still there, and the light pole. I used to be taller than that pine tree.  Wow!!!!!)
 MEMS...Dean's middle school, and Emily's for one year (it was MY Junior High....East Flagstaff Junior High before the name change)
 Mount Elden
 Grandma's house (and the house I lived in from age 13 to 20):
 Me, Chanon and Dean's 2nd apartment that we lived in for one year...the "Tarrol Apartments" (aka:  "Troll Apts" as my brother's affectionately liked to call it).  I prefer to forget living here!  LoL
 My High School, and also Dean's for 2 years:
 Seminary Building across the street from CHS:
 another view of Mt. Elden:
 Buffalo Park (I logged a whole lotta miles here)!
 Flagstaff Medical Center...births, death, illness, operations, tests, treatments, doctor visits, blood tests .....lots of "fun" memories inside these walls:
 110 E. Dale #6~ Our first apartment for a year after we got married, and the "home" we brought our first-born to!
 Stake Center
 Main Public Library (every Saturday!)
 A "not so great" shot of CHS Cromer Stadium and surrounding practice fields:
 East Flag library branch:
 The Aquaplex:
 Sinagua Middle School (Emily's school for one year):
 The Dome!
 NAU Speech, Language and Hearing clinic Nathan went to for a couple of years:
NAU Social and Behavioral Sciences Building where my dad taught for many years:
NAU Audrey Auditorium/Music building (recitals, auditions, performances, classes, piano lessons, AMTA Study program, etc.......TONS of memories spanning MANY years!)
Back of Music Bldg/Clifford E. White Theater/Nutcracker Suite in Modern Bare Feet (Emily)
 The Former LDS Institute of Religion Building (where Chanon and I met) is not the Institute anymore:

 Little America (I played the piano in the Dining Room, ate 25 cent ice cream cones as often as possible, and Chanon proposed to me here):

 Bushmaster Park (played/came here for many years as a child as well as an adult!)  Gotta love the graffiti:
 Oops... this got out of order......Thomas school playground (Nathan had lots of fun here):
 The Flagstaff Mall (this mall is MUCH better than the one here in Nampa....if THAT tells you anything),
 and the Purina building behind it (I will NEVER forget that smell.  yuck.)


Sunday, September 18, 2011

More to come.........but it'll have to wait until tomorrow.

Mom, you COULD "follow" MY blog, too, you know!  Heidi, anyone else; feel free so I don't feel like a loser!!!! ( heh heh!  Ya.)   Although, I suppose I AM pretty privileged to have Harry Potter and The Mad Hatter  as followers.

In case you were wondering~

If you WERE'NT wondering, then just skip over this post!
1)  We still like living here
2)  I DID get the "lovely inked designs" off my couch.  (whew!)
3)  We are STILL using my craft table and folding chairs.
4)  The boy's room is where the girl's room used to be, and the girl's room is now where the boy's room used to be.
5)  Sarah stopped getting into the soap.
6)  Nathan and Sarah still make messes, but it's not as bad as it used to be.
7)  Now it gets dark here around 8:00.
8)  Emily still hasn't finished Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (book).
9)  Dean finally got his Pottermore email and has been having fun with the website.  The only bad thing?  He got sorted into Slytherin!!!!!! )o:
10)  Yes, I've been walking at that cool place with the ducks (I've even lost 18 pounds since I moved here!)
11)  Nathan finally got a haircut
12)  I did finally find my was in my camera bag (right where it was supposed to be.  LOL!!!!!)

Did I miss anything?  If so, leave me a comment!!!!


    So, apparently there was some miscommunicating and assuming going on between Father and Son after the Labor day yard work fest (see post below).  Each thought the other was going to empty the lawn mower bag.  Yah, you guessed it....neither one did until it was pointed out the next day.  Thus, Chanon, without gloves on, proceeded to empty the lawn mower bag.  The grass was nasty after being in a hot garage, and of course he had to reach his hand in to get the grass out because it was crammed in so tightly (might I remind you....NO GLOVES).
     What do you get when you cross nasty grass with a hangnail?  That's right, folks---INFECTION!!!!!  Chanon's finger got infected and by Wednesday night (Sept. 7th) it was pretty bad....scratch that--REALLY bad.  In the space of only about half an hour the infection spread noticeably and Chanon was in serious pain (that's an understatement...he thought he was going to die); he also had red streaks starting up his arm.  Not good.  We decided that we'd probably have to take him to the ER because it would have to be lanced, which would not have been in issue if we: 1) knew where the ER was, and 2) had insurance.  Instead, we decided to take care of it ourselves.  Ya, ya, I think we're crazy.  BUT, desperate times call for desperate measures, and at the time we THOUGHT we still had a huge hospital bill for Sarah to pay off and didn't want to add to our financial "woes".  Also, Chanon didn't think he could tolerate the possibility of having to sit in a waiting room for hours...too much pain.
      Having had an infected finger once myself years ago, and having watched the doctor take care of it, I knew what to do!  We gathered up the necessary medical supplies (thanks in part to a neighbor), and I went to work.  Blood and guts don't bother ME!!!!!  In fact, I thought the pus and blood rushing out was kinda cool.  I think I missed my calling in life...should'a been a surgeon!!!!  After the operation, I treated it with iodine, and we wrapped the wound in sterile gauze and let it drain over night.  Beginning the next day, Chanon treated it with hydrogen peroxide 3 times a day for a couple of days, and then only once a day after that.  Here is what his finger looked like 6 days later (SO much better!):
Pretty much the whole top third of his finger was infected and swollen (pre-surgery).  I wish I would've taken a "before" picture of his finger in all its nasty glory so you could see the difference.  Today it's nearly back to normal!  What a relief!!!!!  I have to say that Chanon was really brave to let me cut on him to begin with, and then also with no anesthesia (except for some "Orajel", which only took the edge off the pain).  That was the only thing that bothered me while "operating"....knowing it was going to hurt him!!!!!

Labor day....literally!

Labor day's for working, right?  It is at OUR house.  No time for fun HERE when there's a yard in need of care.

BEFORE (lawn in need of mowing, LOTS of weeds):

 Emily babysat:
 Amy watered plants, pulled weeds and swept:
Chanon pulled weeds, mowed and edged the front lawn:
 Dean pulled weeds:
 I pulled weeds and mowed the back lawn...unfortunately I whacked one of the limbs off of this poor (HUGE, I might add) Praying Mantis:
 Almost done:

                Amy sweeping (it didn't quite get posted in the right place):
Weed Whacking:

We ran out of day, and there are STILL some weeds out back that need to be bagged up.....*sigh*
But still, the backyard looks better NOW than it did in July....wouldn't you agree?!!!!!-----