Saturday, January 28, 2012

What we do

Life around her has changed for sure but it's not all sadness and gloom, not by a long shot. There is still the normal stuff to get done: homework, chores, grocery shopping, and dinner. I'm super grateful for dear friends who are bringing dinner in twice a week. After driving to and from Boston every day dinner is the one thing that seems to be beyond me. When we are visiting frank we play cards and board games together and watch an occasional tv show or movie (but he's not much of a tv guy so we don't do a lot of that). When I visit frank alone there is a lot more just lounging around or walking the halls for "exercise". Thankfully frank still feels pretty good overall and at the moment he still has his hair. The nurse only remembers one guy keeping his hair in all her years working there so he knows the odds are against him but he's done so well so far that we figure he might just surprise everyone on this score too.

Monday, January 23, 2012

For those who don't know...

My life and the life of my family was turned upside down on my birthday this year.
My husband was diagnosed with Leukemia.
not my favorite way to start out the new year
and not my favorite birthday.
But I'm guessing my husband liked it even less.

Since that day nothing has been the same.
Just trying to let people know has been difficult. 
There are probably important people who I have missed and for that I am sorry.

Frank is being treated at Mass General
and we feel like he's in good hands.

But I'm not gonna lie
it's hard.
He hates being cooped up in a room and having other people control his life
hates it.
I'm driving to Boston nearly every day 
trying to make sure Frank feels supported
and also trying to make sure the kids don't feel abandoned.
It's a lot.

Frank tries to be upbeat
and so do I
and sometimes we just can't
and so we are cranky.
With doctors, nurses and each other.
I guess that's all normal.

Right now nothing feels normal though.
I don't know how to feel.

So, there it is.
That's what's going on with me.


Friday, January 20, 2012

Books read in 2011

Once again I forgot to write down some of the books I read this last year but I did better at remembering than in years past.  Now that I have an Iphone I'm a little worried that my reading is going downhill.  I find myself playing dumb games or habitually checking email and Facebook rather than reading.  I'm not too happy about it and I seriously have to get a grip!  So we'll see how the list comes out for 2012...I gotta get going if I want to read a decent amount this year.

Books read in 2011

Roots                                            Alex Haley
An Assembly Such as This             Pamela Aidan
Duty and Desire                             Pamela Aidan
These Three Remain                      Pamela Aidan

Firewing                                         Kenneth Oppel
Sunwing                                         Kenneth Oppel
Silverwing                                      Kenneth Oppel

1776                                              David McCullough
Unbroken                                       Laura Hillebrand
Master Your Metabolism               Jillian Michaels
Heart in the Right Place                  Carolyn Jourdan               loved!
Fablehaven                                     Brandon Mull
Left for Dead                                  Beck Weathers
Invasive Procedures                       Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston
The Magicians Apprentice              Trudi Canavan
The Novice                                    Trudi Canavan
The High Lord                                Trudi Canavan

Priestess of the White                      Trudi Canavan
Last of the Wilds                             Trudi Canavan
Voice of the Gods                           Trudi Canavan

The Help                                         Kathryn Stockett              loved

School's Out-Forever (Maximum Ride Series)     James Patterson

The Harvester                                 Gene Stratton Porter

A Girl Named Zippy                        Haven Kimmel

The Underland Chronicles               Suzanne Collins
·         Gregor the Overlander
·         Gregor and the Prophecy of Bane
·         Gregor and the Curse of the Warmbloods
·         Gregor and theMarks of Secret
·         Gregor and the Code of Claw

Pathfinder                                          Orson Scott Card

A Lion and a Lamb                            Rand H. Packer             interesting book about the Sacred Grove
Sarah's Key                                       Tatiana de Rosnay          loved

Glass Castle                                       Jeannette Walls              wow
Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet/ Jamie Ford
First Meetings                                    Orson Scott Card
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks /Rebecca Skloot               loved    
Room                                                 Emma Donoghue             really liked but disturbing
Olive Kitteridge                                  Elizabeth Strout                unusual but I liked it (bad language)
Hart's Hope                                       Orson Scott Card
Rebecca                                            Daphne du Maurier

The Princess Bride                             S. Morgenstern/ abridged by William Goldman
Eat Cake                                           Jeanne Ray (a favorite fluff read)

Walden--didn't finish yet

The card

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

New Year's Cards

I knew I wouldn't do Christmas Cards this year because I was waiting for Amber and Branden to come visit so we could take a family photo.
so the plan was to send a "New Year's Card"
It's January 10th now and no cards have been sent.
they have been digitally created.
Not uploaded
Not printed
Not mailed

I'm thinking I might need to change the color scheme to be Valentines...

Monday, January 9, 2012

Looking Back IV- A Sad Christmas Story

It's hard being this behind on blogging.
So many stories to tell and yet they all seem to be 
"old news"
but I always run into the problem of the fact that I really write this thing for myself
(not really you 3 people reading this...though I do love you!)
I print it out at the end of the year as a journal.
So if I skip stuff just because its old, that would just be silly.

Ok, on to the post.

Christmas Day!
yes. Still.

We got perhaps the biggest, most exciting gift for one of our kids that we have ever gotten
and probably will ever get again.

Austin had gotten some pretty boring Christmas gifts all morning.
Socks, pajama bottoms, a couple of shirts.
Oh he did get a Grateful Dead blanket that he liked...
But overall I think he was chalking this one up to the lamest Christmas ever in terms of gifts.

Then I pointed out one last gift hidden behind the tree...

His reaction was pretty happy

We got Austin...


A cute used Subaru Legacy with a previously applied bumper sticker that says "Swedes have more fun" 

Four Days Later...
Here is that Subaru:

Hauled off to the junk yard.
Definitely the most expensive and short lived gift we have ever given.

Thankfully the most important part, our son, is fine.

He was pretty sad though.
He was free for a whole 4 days.
Now its' back to getting rides from Mom.
(that's from both of us)

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Looking Back III-Christmas Day

I know you are all curious about the gifts we got from Frank
(the ones with the notes)
so here is a little peak at Christmas morning:
The note on this one read "For the kid who loves vegetables, don't eat these"
 It's a bean bag
and he hates veggies anyway
 My cute new purse from my in-laws
 A book Carter's been wanting

This might have been Branden's favorite...
lots of cash from Grandma and Grandaddy with a picture of a car (just like the one he's trying to fix up) telling him to use it to work on his car!

Ok here's Carter opening the one from Frank that said,
 "When stealing mine doesn't work, there's always Christmas"
He really couldn't figure that one out.
It was a backpack.
You see, at the beginning of the school year Carter had "stolen" one of Frank's backpacks to use for school and he really loved it.  But he didn't know it was the backpack that Frank uses all the time when he travels.  So Frank got him his own cool, good backpack. 
he loves it.
A cut hat I got for Amber.
She isn't really this red in real life, I have no idea what's going on here.
Austin with his Grateful Dead blanket
 Branden got lots of tools.
He's a tool guy now.
Ok, I got a cute camera bag.
I opened my See's chocolates before I opened the camera bag...
So in every shot I am eating or chewing or biting a chocolate.
Frank thought it was funny.

 My big gift to Frank and the boys.
It's such a cool game!
and I hate Risk.
So the rule is that I  make cookies when they play and they don't hassle me to play with them.

 Frank's big gift to me (and himself)
The note said:

"There are many benefits to losing weight.
Hopefully this gift will deliver results for you!"

 It's a flat screen tv!
Our other tv was too heavy for the tv stand I made for it so this one will be better (we hope)
It's lovely.
and HUGE.
 Now for the most amazing gift of the day
This one wasn't from us or Santa or even a relative
it was from a friend from church who found out that Carter is a Beatles fan
 He gave him two Beatles vinyl records and covers
 Along with some memorabilia that is super duper rare

 We were all amazed!

And last we have Austin's reaction to his big gift.
But that's another blog entirely...

Thursday, January 5, 2012

It's my party, and, well, you know the rest

It's my birthday today!
I'm 45 years old
Fourty Five, people.
I can no longer check the 35-44 box

I'm not really upset about it except that, so far, this year bites
So 45 isn't looking to be a good number for me
We'll see I guess

I've decided to do the project 365 starting today
My 45th year in pictures
We'll see how it goes...

Now time to get in the shower to start the day
First task is laundry
and the kitchen is a mess
doctor appointment later today
and grocery shopping
Hey, no one said birthdays were glamorous
Except I always wish they were somehow

It's my party and I'll...
No No
It's all good
I'm glad to have:
clothes to wear
a washer that works
medical insurance
food in the cupboards
a job to pay for the groceries
and another day on this earth
to celebrate with the people I love
It IS my party

Happy Birthday to me