Saturday, March 31, 2012

project life– march 2012

here are the layouts – actual pictures of the book in action – for march.

march started on a thursday, but my pictures weren’t exactly sunday – saturday this week. I had no pic for wednesday, and no pic for friday. but 2 for both thursday and saturday. it worked… so we have the second half of this layout for the week 9:002

week 10 has one 8x10 collage of extras, plus a math homework worksheet of shane’s on the backside. it has a smiley face on it! :)003004

week 11 has one 8x10 collage of extras and micah’s handprint “thing 1 and thing 2” that he made in preschool.005006

week 12 includes our church retreat to camp lutherwood. I didn’t need an 8x10 of extras this week, but I needed two to cover all the stuff we did at camp.007008

week 13 is possibly the most exciting week that will be in 2012. hard to say. but this week we bought a house! layla also bookended the week with birthday parties. I have one 8x10 of extras and a drawing layla made of a submarine.009010

that’s march! it was very nice of march to end on a saturday and make this very concise for me! LOL!

Monday, March 26, 2012

week 12 in pictures

sunday: another shot of micah and his future wife… this time they are “in bed”. LOL!023

monday: no picture. will have to have someone draw something for me.

tuesday: micah was inspired by something we were watching on tv. they were playing laser tag out in the woods, so he went and got his hat and mittens on, made himself a rifle out of legos, and proceeded to crawl army-style across the livingroom, shooting lasers at everyone.004

wednesday: spring is officially springing everywhere! these are a few pretties I found in our yard.014012

this one I will use little in one of the small vertical slots in the book.









thursday: physical therapy for layla. this time they played some floor hockey. 006

friday: super sunny day! the start of a beautiful weekend. micah was outside climbing…018017

ginger was too! she asked to be let out. walked straight off the deck, found a spot in the sun and laid down.








saturday: sunrise at camp lutherwood. this was our morning gathering at the point. so pretty!026

and the extras: I have two 8x10 collages of the kids at camp from friday night and saturday.Picasa33Picasa34

Friday, March 23, 2012

chips & salsa


I LOVE chips and salsa. it’s one of my most favorite foods in the world. weird, probably. but really good, fresh salsa with lots of cilantro and not too much chili powder is like a magical concoction.


when I get to the bottom of a bag of tortilla chips, and the chips are all broken and too small to effectively dip into the salsa anymore… I dump them into my bowl of salsa, stir them around, and eat it with a spoon.

true story.

and I’m not ashamed to admit it!

Winking smile

Monday, March 19, 2012

week 11 in pictures

sunday: micah and his bff (future wife) ella, building a kitty house together in the church nursery.028

monday: at the band concert last week, I mentioned to mr. kelly that shane was thinking of switching to french horn next year. on monday, he came home with one! apparently the school has a few that aren’t being used and since so few kids want to play french horn, he was more than willing to get shane started right away! what a freakin’ cool instrument!! I actually had to MAKE shane stop practicing.001

tuesday: layla and micah playing barbies together. yes, micah’s wearing his swim suit. I have no idea why, but he does this ALL. THE. TIME…005

wednesday: in the book, these two pics will be collaged together. shane took ginger out in the yard to throw the ball. this dog NEVER tires of chasing a ball. NEVER. 011014

thursday: science fair at the school. layla did her project on labrador retrievers. shane did his on how the storage temperature of popcorn affects how it pops.  these two pics will also be collaged together in the book.034036

friday: ginger and toby, in the closest proximity they’ve been since ginger moved in… the reason? I was eating a piece of turkey… yes, both are quite food-motivated. (I’m suspicious that toby may be part lab. but don’t tell him that, I’m sure he’d be offended!)039

saturday (not really): this is SOOOO micah! this is what he chose to have for lunch. fruit boy had a banana, an orange, and a cup of applesauce. 020

and the extras:Picasa30

  1. ginger passed the crusty casserole dish test! she gets to stay!
  2. shane and micah, starting the family band.
  3. layla, trying out the trumpet
  4. shane as the one man band… yes, he was able to get sound out of both instruments at once. and, because you use your left hand to press the valves on the french horn, and the right hand on the trumpet, you could, technically play something worth listening to…
  5. FINALLY! a vacuum that sucks! we had to replace our vacuum cleaner and I decided to just fork over the dough and get a GOOD one. I LOVE IT!
  6. micah and finnigan – on saturday, we went to look at a house down their way, so we stopped by amy’s house afterward. it’s so funny because finnigan loves for micah to play with him!
  7. that’s shane and an ENORMOUS spoonful of peanut butter. snack of choice around our house. yes, we’re weird like that.

Monday, March 12, 2012

ginger update

so, this is our third day with ginger in our family, and things are going great! everyone is quite in love with her. she has not tried to run away at all, and really just seems to want to stay close to us. I was a little bit worried, that if she got out the front door, she would try to make a break for it and head back over to george’s, but she keeps her eyes on me. even if she goes sniffing around in the yard or to go potty, she always comes right back to me. at home, she follows me around. it’s pretty cute. she slept next to our bed last night. one major difference between her and sophie is that she is light in color, and doesn’t blend into the dark carpet – making her much less likely to get stepped on in the dark!

she and toby seem to have some sort of established understanding… she doesn’t chase him, he doesn’t run away from her, they just seem to keep their distance. I can tell that toby is a little miffed at her presence, and is probably just hoping she’ll go away soon, but they seem to mutually tolerate each other.

she is very affectionate. wants lovin’ all the time! she’ll come up and lean against you so you’ll pet her. stick her nose in your lap so you’ll pet her.

the only ‘bad’ thing she’s done so far is take a nap on the couch. not the end of the world, but I’d prefer she didn’t get on the furniture. so last night we put the coffee table up on the couch to keep her off of it.

I will also say that I have not heard her bark or whine once. not once. when she wants to come back inside, she politely taps on the glass door. sometimes she makes little growling noises when she sleeps.

this morning, we took her to the bus stop with us. she was all happy when we got the leash out. on the way back, she was pulling toward the driveway to george’s house, but when we didn’t go that way, she just kept walking with us. poor girl.

but really, she is just a wonderful dog. super-awesome, wonderful. we just love her!

random kindness

this morning, I was on my way to the school to drop off shane’s science fair poster. he didn’t want to take it with him on the bus this morning (to and from band), so I agreed to drop it off in the office for him. it was probably a very good idea, since it’s been DUMPING rain all morning, and we’re kind of in the middle of a somewhat significant wind storm.

at any rate, as I’m driving down the road – a somewhat major road with a lot of traffic– there’s a stoplight ahead, but it’s green, and I can’t figure out why everyone is moving so slowly. and then I see, standing in the middle of the intersection, a beautiful husky dog. just standing there, looking confused. people are being very careful and driving by slowly, but I just kept thinking, “oh! somebody rescue it!” then I see a woman in a van roll down her window and call to the dog. it wagged it’s tail and came up to her car. she kept calling it as she turned the corner onto the cross street. the dog followed her off the main road. as I drove by, she was out of the car and checking it’s tags.

made me a little teary.

thank goodness for kind strangers. even kindness to a lost dog. completely made my day!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

week 10 in pictures

sunday: my parents were over for dinner, and my dad was demonstrating the advantages of being 6’9” and almost as tall as the pull-up bar.035

monday: micah made a playdough ladybug. cute, huh?002

tuesday: layla got her stitches out after school. her lip is healing nicely, and it didn’t even hurt.003

wednesday: shane had his second band concert of the year. I couldn’t take a picture of him actually playing because there were people blocking our view. I didn’t want to be rude and stand up in the middle of it. so I snapped this across the gym while the jr. high band was setting up. he’s over there on the bleachers in the black shirt.004

thursday: PT appt for layla. the aquarium by the check in desk has this HUGE hermit crab. I had no idea they could be this big. it’s really pretty… in a creepy sort of way.007

friday: date night! dave had to go over to the plateau to pick up some shirts from his friend, nick. I ditched the kids and met him over there. we had dinner at the pine lake ale house. YUM! this was my drink. a ‘traditional’ appletini. it’s what I had one night years ago when we were dating. so it’s kind of reminiscent! 012

saturday: today we made ginger a part of our family! Picasa26

and the extras:Picasa25

  1. a lovely patch of crocuses blooming at the school!
  2. my post-workout meal of coffee and bacon.
  3. helping shane with his popcorn science experiment.
  4. a morning routine… doing layla’s hair.
  5. shane, taste-testing science experiment.
  6. layla, AKA darth sidius.
  7. dave and todd… modeling one of the “real dawgs fight cancer” shirts he had made.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

the story of ginger

as of around noon today, we have a new family member!

meet ginger!016

ginger is an approximately 10 year old yellow lab who came into our lives quite suddenly. she is a beautiful girl. very energetic and agile for her age. she is super well-behaved, friendly, loves everyone, and would chase a tennis ball all day long if you kept throwing it.018

yesterday, ginger lost her person. our sweet, elderly, bachelor neighbor, george, passed away yesterday morning. ginger had been with george for about the last two years, after he lost his dog, babe. before coming to live with george, she had a family and a lake and space to run. but they had to move into the city. and that is how she came to live here, and be neighbors with us.

so now ginger found herself without a person. george’s closest neighbors were wondering what to do about her. he has no close family, and they both have dogs of their own already. and well, as we have been very much without a dog since we lost sophie last june, it just seemed like the perfect match. we needed a dog, she needed a family.

needless to say, ginger is a little confused, and I’m sure she will try to head ‘home’ more than once. but for now, she seems to be settling in pretty nicely. and we are definitely smitten with her. she is just so sweet!

her collar had george’s phone number on it, so we took her down to the store today and picked out a new collar and leash (pink! layla’s choice.), and made her a tag with our phone numbers on it. I guess she’s officially ours!


a 10 year old dog was not really on our radar. it’s only recently that I’ve felt like I was ready for another dog. watching sophie go downhill and eventually knowing it was time to put her down was so hard, and still pretty fresh. it hurts my heart to think about. but we all really wanted a dog. we’ve been searching shelter websites periodically, and even inquired about a pair of lab siblings once. we also had thought of embracing our city’s tradition and getting a bassett hound. but we were looking for a young dog. NOT a puppy. been there, done that. I like my shoes! maybe once the kids are all grown up, I MIGHT be ready for that again. but we figured we wanted a dog that we could have for a long time. maybe around a year or two old… I prayed that God would help us find the right dog for our family. a dog that needed us as much as we needed it.

once again, God knew best. 049

I emailed a picture of her to my mom earlier today. apparently my parents are very excited about this too, because I got a call later this evening, asking if they could stop by and meet their newest granddaughter!

so cute. I’m so excited to have a dog again. to see how this unexpected journey unfolds. our whole neighborhood is going to miss george a lot, I just hope we can give ginger a happy life.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

through the casting journey

so, now that we’re done with the casting part of this whole saga, I thought I should write up a thorough update about how the whole thing went. we’re nowhere near done with this whole journey, but at least the casting portion is done, so I can speak to that.
if you need some background information, or need to refresh your memory, I have several posts full of the information which led up to this point, and how I wound up yanking my 6 year old out of school early 2 days a week so she could walk around with both feet in casts. you can read those here, here, here, here, or here.
so basically, on february 2, layla got her first set of casts. at this point, her heel cords were very tight, especially the right, and even with her feet casted into a flexed position, she had to have a little ‘lift’ under her heels in her cast shoes, because they were not flat. they stretched her feet some, but not too much, because they didn’t want to make her too uncomfortable the first time around while she was just getting used to them. the casts took some getting used to, but she was so excited about decorating them, that it was all very exciting. she was able to walk without much difficulty, but was a little bit frustrated by how slow and clonky she felt – as well as the instructions to avoid puddles, woodchips, and sand… (so basically everything a grade school kid in western washington might encounter.) 033
after a couple of days, the novelty had worn off and the casts were not so fun anymore, but still not too much of a big deal. the following monday, we went back in for the next set. of course, this meant getting the first set cut off, and our first experience with the cast saw. that was a little intimidating, but turned out not to be a big deal.027029
her second set were also a colorful fashion statement, but these ones proved to be the most problematic. I think with this set, they gave her a good stretch first so her feet were really flexed inside the casts. this led to some restless nights and a little complaining about being uncomfortable. but really, it wasn’t terrible.032
after the second set came off, they had her try walking around in her bare feet. this was a little alarming for me to watch. she’d been wearing casts for 1 full week, and she couldn’t walk normally anymore! the PT assured me this was normal because 1) the floor felt really weird on her feet without anything on them, and 2) her leg muscles were really weakened from not having used them at all for a week.016
the third set of casts took very little time to get used to, and connie, our PT, was noticing a difference in layla’s posture already (which is why her dress is all wadded up and stuffed into the back of her shorts). before the casting, layla was unable to stand comfortably on flat feet. her posture was comparable to that of someone standing in very high heels. her back, her hips, and most of all her balance, was adjusted for standing on her toes. when she wasn’t on her toes, she couldn’t stand up straight. she had to stick her butt out and lean forward to keep from falling over.019
in general, the casts were just part of life, and didn’t really get in the way much.023172
set 4 – 2 weeks later. these ones were a breeze. she was running in them by the end of the first day.003
and finally, set 5. the final set. at this appointment, connie got the best stretch out of her ever. every week they would measure her foot flexibility to see how much progress had been made with each set. that right there, is the most flexed I think I have ever seen layla’s right foot. it’s still tighter than the left, which it has been all along, but so much better than when we started.013
layla’s final set of casts were both red, and got decorated with some fancy jewels and wiggle eyes, sent to her by her cousin. excuse my lack of artistic ability when drawing cats on casts… she didn’t tell me she wanted it to be a cat until I was half way through drawing it!015016
once again, you can see that she didn’t really let them get in her way… 001005
but we were all looking forward to the 21st. almost 3 weeks since her first appointment, the casts came off and didn’t go back on. we have moved on to some orthotics. also known as AFOs or braces. they go up her calf in the back, and wrap around her foot and ankle in the front. the allow for forward bending motion, but not for going up on the toes. these also took some getting used to – and are quite challenging to shove into her shoes. BUT, at least she can wear pants and socks and a regular pair of shoes.001003
of course the best part of not having casts on is getting to take a full-body bath! she has to sleep with the orthotics on, but can have them off for about 3 hours a day. this time period will gradually grow longer, and soon will be all night. eventually that time period will swap, where she won’t wear them at all during the day, but will wear them at night.005
so now we go to PT once a week, and she has stretches and exercises she has to do. 001003005
her walking is a little funky now, especially without the orthotics on. she limps a little, favoring the right. mainly because it’s still tighter than the left. her feet are trained not to go up on her toes, but because it’s a little tight, she kind of catches when she steps forward on the left, because that’s when she feels the biggest stretch on her right. if that makes sense. 003
but she’s been able to ride her scooter, and her bike without any issues. and you can see here, that foot is flat on the ground, mid-step.004
so at this point, it’s gait therapy, strengthening her leg muscles, and maintaining the flexibility and range of motion accomplished by the casting.
hopefully she’ll get to a new ‘normal’ soon, where she can run around comfortably, without even thinking about it.


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