Families are Love

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Random pics from throughout the 2nd half of the year

like i said, random pictures! too much fun, i just love my familia so very much!!!

so many things to catch up on!

boy, I am not so good at this journaling thing lately! So let's start with


our Thanksgiving was busy like always, we went to Steve's family gathering first and then to the Woolstenhulme side. It was nice to see all the family, but I must admit I don't know how much longer I can do this... This year we did a count down to Thanksgiving, we had so much fun with it!!! Each day we had an activity to do each day that went along with what we were thankful for that day. Our favorites were:

Steve's favorites
*kitchen: we cleaned up the kitchen and then made some treats for others... I think we made scotcheroos that day with a note that said "Happy 18 days til Thanksgiving!" one friend we took them too was take a little of guard, but said that we could take them a treat for every day until Thanksgiving :)
*neighbors: Steve helped get treats ready for neighbors and just in his style loves to do sweet things for those around him.
*pies: I spent the day baking pies, Steve and Mike took them to members of our ward and then enjoyed the leftovers!

Michael's favorites:
*neighbors: he and Kourtney(our neighbor) took 2 liters of soda to some neighbors of their choice with a note that said "just popping in to tell you we are thankful for you!"
*brothers: Mike chose to send a green balloon to Heaven so Josh could have that from us. We each gave it a great big hug and kiss and sent it up to him.
*hands: we spent (tried to) the day drawing, coloring, playing etc to use our hands. We even made those lovely hand turkeys :)

My favorites
*Jesus Christ: we did a little FHE all about Christ and His mission on earth
*pies: I baked pies all day, then Steve and Mike took them to people in our ward
*home: that meant I got some help cleaning up the house! hooray!

We have been so tremendously blessed this year as always, what a wonderful wonderful way to remember!

Later that night we helped decorate Grandma Bean's family Christmas tree... it was great fun with all the cousins and thank heavens that Katie was pretty good that day!


December started with a bang, sort of! I chose to make most of the Christmas gifts that we gave to others this year and man I was busy! I had so much fun! My house wasn't as decorated as I really enjoy, but it was ok... next year will be different. I will have to go get pics of the things I made and gave away... silly me!
Some of the things I made were: a bathrobe for Mike, a stuffed owl for Katie, fleece socks for Steph with a cute white flower on the side, a felt pizza kit for our niece Didi, a zipper flower brooch for my mom, Desert of the month club for Steve (not my most creative), candy boxes for vts, teachers, etc that my mom showed me how to make, mustache cups for some family and

friends, fun headbands for our niece McKenna that included one with a zipper flower, snowflake, ruffles, and then some bobby pins, I made rice bags, ribbon and pearl necklaces, I can't quite think of what else at the moment, but I had such a wonderful time doing it! Steve and Mike got into it too,
Steve painted me a nativity, sewed me pj pants (yes he learned to sew), he made Mike stilts and a lap desk, and he made Katie some burp cloths.
Mike made (with Steve) stilts for his cousin Harrison, a marshmallow gun for his cousin Isaac, (with me)cloths pin magnets for his grandmas, caprisun juice pouch coin purses for two of his aunts, and then a cupcake ornament for his teacher Mrs. Weist.
I don't know if I have really ever had a Christmas quite like this one... we put so much more thought and love into each gift because we made them! I think it will become a tradition in our household! (i know sad, the only pic I actually took)

Sunday, November 14, 2010

It's that time of year

So it is now almost Thanksgiving and i still have not even posted a really good picture of my KatieLynn! Mike has been such a good sport and tries to be ever so "helpful"... we've been really blessed by the Lord this year and are grateful for the love we have been able to share as a family and the many blessings we receive daily.
This year for Thanksgiving we decided to do a countdown to thanksgiving by focusing on something we are thankful for each day until thanksgiving, but decided that wasn't quite enough so we rounded out the month and have 30 days of specific thankfulness to celebrate. We've been thankful for our kitchen, that day so far has been my favorite... i made pies all day :), we've been thankful for our ears and listened to wonderful music all day, we've been thankful for prayer and had a special family prayer where we could only say thank you to our Father in Heaven for all He has given us, we also had a day where we were specifically thankful for brothers and we sent a special green balloon full of our love to Josh up in heaven.
What a wonderful time of year to be celebrating the blessings we have been given! I'm so excited for the rest of this holiday season, hopefully we will be able to carry on being thankful everyday for all we have been given!
P.S. we are thankful for our family and friends!!!

The night before Katie was born... saying seriously... why am I going home?!

our little gaggle! ;) & Michael with his new glasses, he's doing great with them!

Doesn't he look charming?! love him!

Little Katie on her blessing day! oh my darling

Thursday, October 28, 2010

So kindergarten is awesome! I wish that it would have been that cool when I was little. Michael's teacher, Mrs. Weist, is amazing and Michael just loves her so much! I have been so proud of Michael and with how hard he is working.

Friday, September 10, 2010


So many things have happened that I feel very behind and I'm not sure where to start!

On July 27, 2010 We welcomed miss KatieLynn to our familia! She was born @ 2:17 p.m. and weighed 8 lbs 2 oz. She is healthy and a pretty easy going little girl, but man does she have some projection in her voice already! When she was born she scared Dr. Nelson with how loud she was :) She is such a wonderful addition to our family and we feel really blessed that Heavenly Father sent her to our family!

Michael really enjoyed the summer, I think? He played t-ball and absolutely loved it! We started reading this summer and he is really picking up on sounding out words correctly! I love it... he even read me a whole book the other night! Proud mama moment *sigh* We made some new friends and he played to exhaustion on occassion. He went camping and the highlights according to him were the lightning storms and the fact that he stepped in cow poop. :) what a cutie! He is trying to be really helpful with Katie and loves her oh so very much! He has his moments of wanting the attention and has an issue with it, but all in all he is doing much better than I thought. Michael loves singing the primary songs, at home, he has a little stage-fright and doesn't really sing the songs right at church, but he tries and I love to hear his voice singing the beautiful words to the tender songs. Michael loves to sing "I am a Child of God" to Katie when she is crying and it has helped her calm down a few times. AND Michael seemingly had the final say on what to name his baby sister. ;)

Steve & I:
besides getting ready for a new little one, Steve was finally busy with work and we were able to catch-up on some bills. We enjoyed trying to decide on names for our little girl and had our hearts set on Katelyn Marie, but after 24 hrs of having her in our arms... it was definitely wrong and we realized she was Katie Lynn. We feel so blessed to have the families that we do and are so thankful for little children Heavenly Father has sent to our home.

Having a new little one in our home has been an interesting transition after the passing of our JoshuaJay. There are days when it seems as if Josh was just here a week ago and that Katie has been here for months and months. Katie seems to be an answer to prayers of pain and sorrow and has become a balm of Gilead of sorts for the wound that has been left in our family since Josh passed away. We know that our family will be ALL together again and we are so thankful for the sacrifice that Christ has made in our behalf.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Good Things to Come

So I took the title of this post from a MormonMessage by Elder Holland. Lately it's felt as if the world is kind of cruel and unforgiving place and I'm sure that I've done my part in adding to that, so when my friend posted a link on her facebook page to Elder Hollands message it brought tears to my eyes.

In the past week it seems that another one of those milestones hit me harder than I expected, 18 months. It's been 18 months since I last held my boy, my Joshua Jay. Still miss him, but I understand more of his mission that he is on now. I've been very blessed to be on this journey, I know blessed is the word I used. I haven't enjoyed very much of it, but as I and my family have learned to and experimented upon the Lord's promises, we have been given courage, comfort, and the ability to look beyond what is immediate and look to what is eternal. It's an amazing feeling to know, I mean to really know, that someone you love is working and waiting in the Spirit world.

i've had a lot of mixed feelings lately as the birth of our daughter is approaching, feelings that I didn't think I would experience. I've felt guilty, anxious, and a bit depressed. But again trying to have faith in the Lord's plan worked out. even with my the little bit of faith I have had at trying times, the abundance of what the Lord has poured out upon our family has been amazing. So many prayers have been answered in unexpected ways, thankfully we have been able to accept them even when it's been a way we haven't enjoyed.

We've had our challenges, we have our challenges and are trying to keep our chin up.
I haven't really gotten to my point, but really my point is good things come, you just have to hang on. If you have an opportunity, if you want a quick 5 minute pick-me-up Elder Holland's message "Good Things to Come" is excellent (I'm sorry I don't have the link)

"Don't you quit... you keep trying, there is help and happiness ahead. Some blessings come soon, Some come late, and some don't come until Heaven... you will be alright in the end. Trust God and believe in good things to come." ~Elder Holland

P.S. 1 wk 2 days until we welcome our little girl.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Things that I love

So the other night I was in a feisty mood while I was trying to go to sleep, so I decided to start listing things in my head that I love and am thankful for. To keep in that spirit of gratitude I've tried to keep it up the last few days so, without further adieu ... things that I love


~ when the sun shines, especially on gloomy days
~ seeing my family happy
~ feeling peace and calm about trials
~ enjoying nature
~ my husband and confidant, Steven
~ watching Michael learn something new and really understand it.
~ adventures, but mostly when I get to look back on them... sometimes they can be pretty scary
~ my children (Michael, Josh, and the new little one coming in July)
~ to learn... again mostly when I get to look back on what I learned
~ to read
~ to understand how people work... should have been a psych major.
~ the scriptures and the spirit they can bring into a home
~ music, especially primary music. what can I say, I've been in some part of primary for 7 yrs.
~ finding out that someone who you just wanted happiness for, is happy.
~ experiencing joy unexpectedly
~ serving without knowing that you were doing a service.
~a friendly note in the mail... not e-mail, but the real mail always makes me smile ;)
~ being able to recognize that my prayers are answered
~ time with my husband... dates area fabulous!
~ reading time with Mike... especially when it's dinosaurs... he Loves dinosaurs!
~ seeing little wisps of Josh in things that Michael does
~ understanding the strengths and challenges that Mike and other kids have
~finding that I can have patience... can being the operative word. :)
~ feeling loved
~ finding a friend that I didn't know I had.
~ talking for hours about everything going on with someone I love... thanks Steve ;)
~being friends with my sisters and mom
~the adventures of parenthood and being an aunt to some wonderful kids (wish Utah and Arizona weren't so far away)
~ finding pictures on the computer that I haven't been able to find for months and months... like this one:

Me and my two super heroes on a walk... my most favorite of all. summer of 2008
(thanks for taking that pic babe! I didn't realize how special a pic like that would be to me until now)

I could keep going, but I'm sure at some point I will be doing this again. It seems that when we look at all our blessings and count them, they grow into a vast array of beauty and joy. The other night I definitely needed it! Love you all.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Little Thought

When I stand before God at the end of my life,
I would hope that I would not have
a single bit of talent left,

and could say,

“I used everything you gave me.”

~Erma Bombeck~

makes me wonder what talents i've been given and if i'm wasting them.

Little Thought

When I stand before God
at the end of my life,

I would hope
that I would not have
a single bit of talent left,

and could say,
“I used everything you gave me.”

~Erma Bombeck~

Makes me wonder what talents i've been given and if i'm wasting them.

Little Thought

When I stand before God
at the end of my life,

I would hope that I would
not have a single bit of talent left,

and could say,
“I used everything you gave me.”

~Erma Bombeck~

Makes me wonder what talents i've been given and if i'm wasting them.

Little Thought

When I stand before God
at the end of my life,

I would hope
that I would not have a single bit of talent left,

and could say,
“I used everything you gave me.”

~Erma Bombeck~

Makes me wonder what talents i've been given and if i'm wasting them.

Little Thought

When I stand before God
at the end of my life,

I would hope
that I would
not have a single bit of talent left,

and could say,
“I used everything you gave me.”

~Erma Bombeck~

Makes me wonder what talents i've been given and if i'm wasting them.

Little Thought

When I stand before God
at the end of my life,

I would hope that I would
not have a single bit of talent left,

and could say,
“I used everything you gave me.”

~Erma Bombeck~

Makes me wonder what talents i've been given and if i'm wasting them.

Little Thought

When I stand before God
at the end of my life,

I would hope that I would
not have a single bit of talent left,

and could say,
“I used everything you gave me.”

~Erma Bombeck~

Makes me wonder if I'm wasting gifts I've been given and exactly what they are and could be.

Little Thought

When I stand before God
at the end of my life,

I would hope that I would
not have a single bit of talent left,

and could say,
“I used everything you gave me.”

Erma Bombeck

Wonderful March!

Oh joy! is anyone else enjoying the beautiful weather?! This month has been pretty wonderful! Mike turned 5.... Yes 5! He had a good birthday I'm assuming because he was pretty happy. On his birthday, he went to school, wore the birthday badge (which is a big deal in his class), took cupcakes for the treat at school which to his specifications had worms on them, came home, had a short rest and then got to open presents from Steve and I. He chose to go to McDonald's for dinner (blah) and had fun running around the play place there, then we went to visit grandma and grandpa bean to take them some cupcakes. Mike got to spend some time playing don't break the ice with grandpa and then it was time to come home. So not really exciting, but he was happy and that's what was important :). He was really excited when we got home and there were a few messages on the answering machine for him.

We planned a birthday party for the Saturday after his birthday and it was a lot of fun. Thankfully not all the kids he invited could come! He made a list of 19 and I think we had 10 able to come. I'm glad there were not more... I failed to realize how crowded it can get in our house. The kids played a version of musical chairs where they just had to sit down when the music stopped... i was a little afraid of injuries with chairs, a balloon crab walk race, and a catch the caterpillar's scarf game before we opened presents.

(Mike was so excited about the presents he was given)

After we opened presents it was time for cake, but where was the cake? Steve had hidden it and then the kids had to go on a treasure hunt of sorts to find it. It was really fun, especially at the end when they had to do the hokey pokey for the last clue which included aunt Becky and aunt Jennie getting into it :) Steve was hiding in our pantry trying to eat the cake and the kids thought it was pretty fun to chase uncle steve who was carrying a cake.

(the hunt begins! )

Mike had so much fun and was exhausted after everyone left... and so was I!

I am so thankful that I have Michael! He is always such an adventure!
I love hearing his imagination going wild with the stories he comes up with for his cars or spacemen. He loves to ask questions about everything, loves to play in costumes, and sings at the top of his lungs especially with "follow the prophet"! Mike is sometimes very sensitive and thankfully pretty loving of the people around him. He is so excited about this summer and t-ball. hopefully swimming lessons too, but we'll see, Steve wants to teach him.
He has come a very long way in his life... that's kind of weird to say, but it's true! he's come from being little scrawny boy at 5lbs 6 oz to a tall for his age 42lbs and 4ft 1 1/2", I know he's not huge, but I can't seem to keep clothes that are long enough on him! Mike has now started to get ready for Kindergarten... hip hip hooray! he's memorized almost all the sight words and is starting to understand the concept of sounding words out. He loves reading and asking questions, especially the question "what kind?" which can get a little frustrating when he asks it in about strange things. He still struggles somewhat with language skills like comprehension and expression, but that's just part of PDD (pervasive development delay) that most preemies have. He tries really hard to please his teachers, his family, and Heavenly Father. He loves primary and even (sometimes) sacrament meeting. Michael loves pizza, hates tomatoes, and enjoys scaring his mom(sounds a bit like Steve). MY BOY IS SUCH A JOY!

We still celebrated the birth of our little Joshua Jay and were really thankful for a thoughtful neighbor who somehow knew it would be a difficult for our family and brought us a pie. It was a wonderful surprise and a blessing I didn't know I needed. Josh is still a big part of our family, it's sometimes disappointing that people (family, friends, whomever) act as if recognizing that will bring us a lot of pain, but it's just the opposite. When people intentionally act as if he was never here it tears my heart open. It helps to hear that others still know his name and use it and remember that he is and always will be part of my family, that they don't just skip over the memories that involved him, and it helps when others realize that any tears that are shed are not because of excruciating pain, but because we love him so very much. To put it in a simpler way, I have a missionary in the field. The difference between me and a mother of a 19 yr old missionary, is that I don't get letters, or a phone call twice a year. Two years will be up, but my son will probably not be coming back to me, but he will still be serving and do the Lord's work. I do get perks though, I get to have that little piece of heaven in my home always, I get to feel his spirit near every once in awhile, and I know he is always safe where he is.

My boys came into this world in a way I never expected... together. They are separated now, but not forever. Michael still asks questions and talks about Josh. We still go out to the cemetery to visit every once in awhile and enjoy the peace that is felt there. I worry that memories will fade as Mike gets older, but I've been very comforted by the Lord in knowing that our family is sealed together. We've just got to make it back to our Father in Heaven too :) We are so excited that our little GIRL (we're having a girl in July) gets to have time with her older brother Josh in a perfect beautiful place!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Mike Turned 5!

Well it is now official, Steve and I are old.... we now have a 5 yr old!!! Mike has been really excited about his birthday this year. We are so very thankful for our Michael Moo... he has such a zest for life and just loves everyone. Mike has been working really hard with being patient the last few weeks waiting for his birthday when he would "be tall, tall." It didn't quite happen that way, but when we measure him he had grown an inch or so since the last time in November.

Mike's birthday was somewhat quiet. He got to go to preschool, I took cupcakes in, and then when he got home he was starting to fight the sicks. Michael was super excited about the cupcakes. He had to have gummy worms on them and was a little nervous when he didn't see them before school. He really enjoyed getting to pass out the cupcakes and be the leader at school!

Friday, February 19, 2010

I know it's been quite awhile now. It's been over a year... in fact a year and one month since Josh passed away. Life has kept moving forward and life has taken our little family in directions that we hadn't anticipated. We still miss him terribly some days. And still the Lord blesses our family with comfort and little mercies that I haven't know I've needed until they've come. Like when I'm sleeping and I just get to feel like he's there or like I can hear his little feet crossing the kitchen. It's been hard not knowing what he's doing... I have my ideas, but not being able to see him doing them is hard. I imagine that Josh is playing music... specifically the piano. For being as young as he was, he had a great sense of rhythm and always seemed to have some type of beat going with whatever he was doing. It's told to us that we take our personalities and traits with us when we pass on. That makes me wonder even more... Josh was such a stubborn little one. He had his set way of doing things and that was that... no questions!

Just some random news

We've been keeping busy with life like every one else and we are thoroughly enjoying life!
Steve is enjoying work and loves learning more about the financial industry, he's hoping to start studying for his investment license soon, but we will see how time works out and flies! He's still the Scout Master in our ward and enjoys working with the few boys that are still in the deacons quorum. Steve went to Washington for work with his dad at the beginning of February and sounds like they had a great time. It was his dad, Larry, himself, and his cousin, Graig. They seemed to have more fun than work and it sounds like they will have to make one more trip in the next few weeks to finish the job. Steve keeps busy and thankfully he's been able to balance time for the family and work and scouts. Even when it means that Mike goes to a meeting with him.... Mike loves it!!!

Mike as happy as all get out after going to work with dad. He came home with some snickers candy from a real millionaire. He was so excited even though he had no idea what that meant. Excuse the woman at the side... it was still during the puking stage. Doesn't he look handsome?

below: Mike's newcast

Mike has been busy with preschool and having an imagination as huge as the sky it seems! The other day he gave me a news report about his toys and even had commercial breaks... he would break by giving the signature local news line... "local people, local news." He is such fun with the things he comes up with! He loves watching the Olympics and enjoyed the little he was able to stay awake for of the opening ceremony... which were wonderful! He even will go around the house lately ice skating, but couldn't quite figure out why he wasn't able to spin on the ground like they could. Preschool has definitely been busy lately it seems, but Mike really enjoys it and especially loves the new aide, whom he flirts with ALL the time... she's in our ward. Mike loves singing especially the days of the week song that sounds like the Adam's family song. We let him watch part of the Star Wars: Episode One a couple of weeks back and now he uses a k'nex rod to fight "the ducks" all over the house (He thought that the droids looked a lot like ducks), it's been a ton of fun especially when Steve gets in the fray :)

Mike is doing well with recognizing sight words and will probably be a kid that memorizes everything. He has that elated look on his face when he realizes that he has memorized something... like a new primary song, a new word, and the words to his favorite books.
I think that must be the most wonderful feeling... when you get to see your child really intrigued and happy with what they've done!

We are continuously working on SPD lately and increasing Mike's fine motor skills with "homework." Mike has loved homework lately and that's made the extra work easier. Today's homework was to make snowballs. Making "snowballs" not only strengthens small muscles in the hand, but also wakes them up to get them ready to work (writing, coloring, cutting). We scrunched up as many snowballs out of paper as we could and then had a great indoors family snowball fight! It was a lot of fun!!! Something I'm sure we will keep doing just for kicks!

snowball fight! Mike and Steve with their game faces on! :)

I'm starting to throw myself back into learning as much as I can about SPD and other "disabilities" (lack of a better word) that hold kid back from learning, and doing the best that they can. It's an interesting adventure. I've been cross referencing some of the challenges Mike has with activities that can help with those things. I just want to know all that I can right now. It's been fun e-mailing OT's and talking to the speech therapists and other people who are involved with helping these kids. A little frustrating because it seems that too often hands are tied by rules, or parents don't have the time or resources to help, or the kid is just missed and labeled as a bad kid. What an unfair disadvantage! I am very thankful to have the time, to have the resources, and the spit fire to stand my ground when my mother's instinct tells me what's going on with my child... wish I had a little more of that to not doubt myself so much :)
Some of the things we are starting to try with Mike is for his vestibular system... inner ear. He enjoys it a lot and so does Steve. It involves standing on his head for a few minutes, swinging around, spinning, and tumbling. I still need to get some more info. and tips from our OT, but it's seeming to help him come back to calm attention when he needs it. He really likes it when he gets to stand on his head and read a book! What a wonderful adventure learning is!!!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Wow two in one day! I actually just thought these were fun to share!

Sensory Processing Disorder

Today I had a great conversation with a friend who has challenges in common with me and it was great to remember that there are other people around who have to deal with the "it" too. We both have children who have a sensory processing disorder or SPD. It's not horrible, but sometimes it can be a little frustrating especially when others don't understand and just think you need to "reign in" your child, who think your child is just a trouble maker, or who think your child is spoiled. So for the benefit of just getting it out there,

SPD is: the inability to use information received through the senses in order to function smoothly in life (The Out of Sync Child, Kranowitz, 9). In other words, the brain is just wired a little different and processes differently than most people.

For example if you were running and tripped your brain would send out a message saying "Catch yourself!" But for a child/person with SPD, specifically dyspraxia(difficulty in motor planning), they wouldn't get the message fast enough or maybe at all and may result in injury.

The kid doesn't have control of it and ideally would be taught how to cope with the challenge. Sometimes children are thought to be mean or aggressive when they may just be rigid with certain things. Example: Rudy shut the door on Alice's fingers. Seems mean, right? But, when you look at it from Rudy's view... mom really wants that door to stay shut... she's told him several hundred times... he thinks he is just following the rules and helping mom. I'm not saying that is always the case, but I know it can be and if you take the time to look from the view of the child you can usually tell what the motive is. It seems there is a very fine line when it comes to what was intentional and what was not. Finding the balance can sometimes really be annoying.

It can also effect social interaction, self regulation, and the ability to learn.
With Mike it still cracks me up sometimes when I vacuum. He comes running into whatever room yelling at the top of his lungs that "it's too loud!" and yet still needs to sit and watch to make sure it doesn't get louder... of course with his hands over his ears or with his head phones on. We've been blessed to have had great teachers, our OTs, to help us learn how to help Mike and Josh with it. They taught me two techniques that really helped them settle down and start to learn to self regulate... brushing and joint compression.

I usually get really weird looks at church when I do this, but the benefit for Mike and the primary teacher are worth it. Why do they work? Well in the words of Sean (Josh's OT) "Brushing provides a deep pressure on the skin, which stimulates the nerve endings to send impulses to the brain. As these impulses go to the brain, the brain is bombarded with this sensory input, causing it to calm or regulate which helps the individual tolerate adverse stimuli. Brushing mainly provides tactile/touch inpulse to the brain and this type of stimulis is effective for a maximum of 2 hours. Joint compression is a proprioceptive type of stimulus which is our awareness of where our body parts are. This stimulis has a much longer lasting effect on the brain as it has to process it. Brushing and joint compression provide the brain with appropriate input or desensitizes the brain to allow it to tolerate or process irritating or obnoxious stimuli. All the sensory input that we receive has an effect on us. It can be stimulating, calming, irritating, or non-important. Brushing and joint compression have a tendency with a majority of the population to cause a calming affect. We are trying to use this calming
affect to help Mike or Josh to deal with irritating stimuli by having
the brain regulated with safe sensory input."

This is Sean and Josh in body socks that gave Josh enough proprioceptive input that he could attend to tasks for longer than normal. It made quite a difference. Funny how little things do that.

It was really worth it! So, I know this was really long winded, but hopefully it helps someone out there who happens upon this. There's still a ton more info on SPD and the different ways it affects people and different ways to help (deep pressure/ weighted blankets), but I've written enough. If you want to know what types of things to look for here's a link to a check list/ website that I've found helpful. Have a wonderful day!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Calm Inevitability Jan. 20 2010

A year has now passed from the last time I was able to hold my little Joshua Jay on this earth. It’s been 12 months of ups, downs and many, many inbetweens. Sometimes it felt as if no one could understand the longing, the miserable missing, and the incredible guilt that can come from being a parent and not being able save your child. It’s been a year of a few steps forward and a few steps back, hopefully more forward than back. Steven, Michael, and I have been blessed with peace, comfort, knowledge, and understanding during this ordeal. We have been blessed so abundantly by the Lord this passed year, sometimes it didn’t seem like a blessing, but it’s always ended up being another testament that the Lord knows and is much, much wiser than ourselves. There are still many questions of “why did this happen?” and “does it ever stop pricking at your heart?” But again the blessings have rolled in in unexpected ways to help our family feel love and comfort. I have appreciated so much the kindness and understanding that I have received from a thoughtful visiting teaching companion, little girls in the activity day group, my mother and father, my siblings and their families. In circumstances where grief is great, having people show that they care is a tremendous mercy that I don’t think we realize until we need it especially when it comes from those whom we love and are close to.

During the past weekend it was impossible to ignore the reminiscing in my heart of the events of last year. It seems as though Steve and Michael felt the same way too. Sunday was the hardest because it was “that day” last year. It was the last day that Joshua was here, the last time we heard his voice, last time we carried him, the last time I could wrap him up, last time we were able to feel like a complete family. Michael has talked a lot of Josh in the last week and even the night he passed away. I had a hope that Mike wouldn’t remember very much because I thought it might be too traumatic, but he remembers quite a bit. Michael remembers Josh being upset at the doctors, giving him a hug, taking him movies, and me cuddling Josh in the hospital bed to keep him warm. We were very blessed that night to have my parents and sister there to watch over Mike and give us a lot of support, support that I’m sure they never wanted to have to give. Steve and I remembered the doctor’s kindness, the surreal feeling it all had, and making Dr. Porter sit on the ground and answer blunt questions about what to do. We remember that calm peace that was placed lovingly in our hearts that night as we spent time holding Josh’s body and trying to accept the Lord’s will for us. We remember kind nurses and hospital staff giving us all the time we needed in the room and the Priesthood blessings we were given. But the most important thing that we remember is how abundant and unrestrained the Lord’s spirit and love was that night. We are so thankful that we were able to feel Josh near us even though he had passed and thankful that we were able to be peaceful.

Michael picked out a spider man car to take to the cemetery along with an elephant (Josh’s favorite), an alligator, but not a lion which Michael let us know was something Josh liked. We also took out white balloons because it’s too cold for flowers. My mom came down on Tuesday and took some pretty orange and yellow silk tulips to Josh’s grave, which just brightened my day. We spent some time together talking and remembering time with the family, it was nice to have that time with her and know that she understands that pain and ache that I sometimes feel. Steve helped me be calm and accepting and just helped me feel loved. We were going to go out to dinner to Leo’s because Michael and Josh loved to play there together, but Michael has strep and that’s been another wonderful adventure ;). We feel a lot of gratitude for Michael and his wonderful appetite for life. He’s such a joy and a blessing to have in our home and part of our eternal family. I know someday we’ll be given answers as to why Michael and Josh were sent to us together only to have Josh leave us earlier than we ever thought. We are thankful that Lord has always answered our prayers and taken care to help heal our hearts. He has given us hope. Hope enough to look forward to the future, to the adventures we still get to experience on this earth, and hope to keeping moving until we are all together again.

I know that someday joy will be unrestrained as we all are reunited to those whom we have been separated from. But for now we find strength and joy in our loved ones we have with us and hope in the future.

Always loved, Always an adventure, Always will be missed.
Until we meet again, we love you, our little Joshua Jay.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Wow! it's been quite a bit longer than i anticipated since I wrote last.
Our December was somewhat eventful with the news that we would be adding a new little one to our family in July! We are so excited... Steve I think the most! It was a surprise... a BIG surprise to us.
I have PCOS (poly cystic ovarian syndrome) which causes infertility and other wonderful side effects, so we were starting to think that taking fertility treatments would be the way we would have another member in our family.... we were wrong. It's been almost five years since I have been pregnant and I have to say that I don't remember a lot of things! Thankfully my next door neighbor is a wonderful patient woman who just happens to work as a nurse in an OB office! She has been wonderful answering my, I'm sure, nervous nellie questions. I didn't remember all the nausea and tiredness. WOW!
I am, however, very blessed with a fabulous husband who has had sympathy for me and been at my beckon call when he's been home. I just love that man!

We had a good Christmas, a little somber, but good. Sometimes it is surprising the way things prick your heart and also the way the Lord calms us all. Michael seemed very aware this holiday season that Josh was missing... more than I thought he would. He kept asking what toys Santa was taking to Josh in heaven and if Josh would get to come down for Christmas. I wish that was the way it worked, that they could just come visit when we needed them; but then we wouldn't need faith and patience. Michael enjoyed the weeks up to Christmas with all that was going on at school and the few flakes we got. He was so excited about everything! There was one friday morning he came in to wake me up and announced that it was Christmas morning! I asked him if there were presents in our stockings, a little perplexed he looked and then was a little disappointed :( On Christmas morning we took our time... 8:30 wahoo! Mike was so stoked though that he bypassed his present from santa to make sure the milk was gone! After we were done opening presents and playing for a bit, we took a few balloons and filled them with our love to send up to heaven for Josh. Mike loves doing this and it's been a pretty nice release for Steve and I too. It's strange and a little unnerving sometimes when you can't do anything for your child that you still love. I have to say that is the part I hate the most!!!
Anyway, we also sent more love up to heaven that afternoon after a wonderful Christmas lunch with the Woolstenhulme side. It was neat to see the sky filled with blue, white, and gold and in my little heart feeling like someone understands. Mike enjoyed his Christmas thoroughly and still thinks it's going to be Christmas on the few days we've gotten snow... too bad for him it doesn't work that way.

Happy New Year to all