Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Evie sits...sort of

So Evie is just about 5 months old now - officially on the 31st. She really wants to sit but does the falling into her thighs thing. Babies are so flexible. Anyway, here are some photos of her doing her thing.
This is what she wore to church on Sunday - a nice silk GAP garage sale find =)
She's definitely NOT ready for the swing yet but Terry put her in real quick so he could help Noah with something. She looks so small!

My mom is helping Evie to learn about the puppy. I need to start calling him Snap.

Secondly, Tuesday the 26nd we went to Lincoln to see a specialist in heads. Yes, I had our family doctor refer us to a pediatric neurosurgeon b/c they're the ones that prescribe those head molding helmets.

Remember, Evie has always preferred to sleep on her right side and thus her head flattened out on that side pushing her right ear and forehead out. Babies heads are sorta flexible b/c the plates inside slide over each other so they can pass out the birth canal. TMI? Well, I'm a nurse.

Anyway, we drove the 3 hours (and 3 hours back) after debating if it was really necessary and decided that it was for our own peace of mind. It was her ears that concerned us. If you look down her head from above her ears are not evenly in line - they're like an inch different so the right one is further up than the left. And if you look at her in the mirror, you can see her forehead isn't symmetrical either. The doc said that this kind of malformation has become much more prevalent since the Back to Sleep campaign to reduce SIDS. Evie's is a moderate case and therefore he didn't think it was mandatory for her to get a helmet - said it was up to us. He said as long as we keep her off of that right side as much as possible, her brain growth should push out the flat spot and correct the ear and forehead thing. We could get a helmet, but why if I can correct it at home...and insurance won't cover it? He did say that she might keep a little flatness but that most people have a little of that.

So, we're to keep doing what we were already doing - putting wedges and a rolled up blanket under her to prevent her from rolling to her right side while she sleeps. She also needs to spend her waking time off of it and as you can see from the photos, she likes to be up.

We feel satisfied and no longer concerned. =)

Monday, August 25, 2008

Noah at fun

My parents arrived yesterday (Sunday) afternoon for a visit that will last thru Friday or Saturday. I was busy after church making a chicken chili in the crock pot for that night and Noah was playing in his old toy that Evie now occupies when I'm busy...except this time she was napping. I turned around to see Noah doing this (first photo) and obviously I had to take a break and grab the camera:

These last shots are from Saturday evening and our play time outside. Terry decided to water this area of our lawn that we planted grass on in the spring. Noah's never really like sprinklers before so I was surprised to see him make a bee line for the water and play in it. Usually he's all about putting on his swimming trunks b/c he's just like that. You know, can't get dirty, etc. But no, he just went for it in his clothes!

Is Terry great with the camera or what?! I love this photo!

Friday, August 22, 2008

4 month checkup

Last week Evie had her four month checkup - it had to be rescheduled due to the funeral. She's so big, a lot bigger than I thought she would be. 14 pounds and 8 ounzes which is the 75th percentile. 25 and 3/4 inches long which is the 95th percentile! I couldn't believe it. Thought I'd take some naked baby pictures to show her progress.

The duck is the same one we used to show monthly growth with Noah. Forgot to do it with Evie.

These next few show Noah sliding out from under Evie, which I thought was funny.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

it's official

The dog's name is Snap. We like it. And it has a story behind it. That's all!

Monday, August 18, 2008

how Snap got his name

Today was Terry's day off. This morning he was being so helpful and holding Evie (so I didn't have to listen to the screaming) while I helped Noah go potty. Success! When I came out Terry said that the puppy got hurt! He had been swinging Evie on the porch swing and the puppy was up there with him. The swing has spaces between the wood pieces so they're like little bars. Puppy went to jump off and got his little paw stuck, his left hind paw. So he was left swinging in the air until Terry could put Evie down on the ground to unstick his poor paw. He explained it to me like, "Jump, snap, crack, yelp, yelp, yelp, yelp, put Evie down, get dog." Yeah, poor puppy. He heard a snap and puppy wouldn't put weight on his hind leg so we thought we better take him to the vet.
Terry went with Noah to the vet who said he didn't think it was broken - could feel it wasn't and thought it was a severe sprained ligament. He gave him a shot that he needed, some flea and tick stuff, and a pain pill and the dog was walking on it when he got home. This evening he was back to chasing Noah around the back yard. Here are some of those shots!

Noah really enjoys having the puppy chase him. He yells "Run" and off they go!
Noah was kind of snuggling with him.
So, Terry's idea for a name is Snap since one of the first experiences with him was hearing his leg snap. What do you think? We're not sure yet. Noah pronounces it "Nap." Yeah, any other ideas?

Saturday, August 16, 2008

new face on the block

I guess we felt like we needed another baby around here. So we got one today...
A girl from youth group named Lynsy has been hustling us ever since we've been here to buy one of her puppies. She breeds purebred minature schnauzers for FFA. It seems like just about everyone we know owns one of them.
So, Lynsy graduated in May and is heading to college tomorrow. She talked to Terry about her last two puppies last night at the high school movie night (Groundhog Day. Yes!) and he agreed to see them today...
This is Lynsy way back in last September 07 showing us the latest litter.
She brought more over in June...

Today she left with one less:

We even took it on a walk. Yeah, it didn't want to walk on the leash. We'll have to work on that.

I know you never thought it would happen. But now it has. We're dog people and Noah is enjoying it. It might take me some time to get used to it (still need a name) since I grew up with cats inside and smelly hunting dogs outside. That way they couldn't whip me with their tail...or jump on me...or slobber on me... Anyway, I'm sure this will make for some fun blogworthy posts!

mcqueen shoes in action

Notice the shoes? Thanks Gramma Biers and Shari. Sorry it took me a week to get them up but I wanted to get an action shot, show you how well he uses them. Here he is climbing. He's a good climber, but wanted a lot of help so these shots were difficult to get. Good thing I'm talented. =)

I like the stuck out tongue - total concentration.

I had to throw Evie in there, of course. She can hold her head up better but her cheeks are really holding her down.

Noah kisses upon command, but mostly just b/c he wants to. Most of the time he does multiple noisy kisses, just like his mommy does.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

prone to not keep them long...

Take a look. This is what happens to Terry's sunglasses, the two pairs that we have in our possession anyway. The others are long gone lost.

Squashed pair
Missing ear piece pair

Terry enjoys wearing sunglasses now a days, especially for any amount of time in the car. He often remarks that he doesn't know how he used to make all of his driving trips without them. For example, traveling from western SoDak to Missouri for his first year of college and thereafter to Moody in Chicago, about 15 hours total.
We just happen to have finished a very large trip to Chicago, Wisconsin and Minnesota and all Terry had to wear was the second pair - the one without an earpiece. He originally got them on his first road trip of the summer to Utah. They cost $7 at a mall in Salt Lake. Somehow, miraculously they were not in the bag that was stolen off the bus. Not that they lasted long after that. =)
Anyway, right before we left for Chicago the earpiece fell off and Terry attempted to salvage it with electrical tape. Yeah, and when we were on our way home it fell off completely. What did he do then? Wear my spare pair (yes, I have two)? No, no, no. He wore them without the earpiece all the way home. They currently reside on our dryer, though I don't know why he put them there.
That pair was the replacement for the first photoed pair, the ones that are somewhat squashed. The squashed pair were a replacement of some really cool blue ones that we still don't know happened to. Anyway, the squashed ones. We got those on sale at Kohl's Memorial Day weekend when we went home. We were there forever trying on sunglasses b/c we thought he needed a nicer pair since this time since he was going to try really hard not to lose them. Surely if he tries really hard he won't lose them right? Correct. But he didn't anticipate Gothenburg drivers.
Terry was turning right onto 4th Ave from Hwy 47 at the base of the viaduct (the corner of McDonalds). It was a nice day and he had the windows of the van open and his sunglasses on the dash... Can you see it happening? Well, the force of the turn made his glasses slide left on the dash and out his window! He reached for them but it was too late. So he pulled over the van and was actually on his way over to them when a lady, coming from the opposite way, turned left on to 4th at the same corner, and ran directly over his brand new sunglasses. Actually, he thought they were going to make it b/c her front wheels missed them. But alas no. Her rear wheels got em. He came home and just laughed as he told me about it. I think I smiled and rolled my eyes. Of course that would happen to him.
Just to wrap up: Terry lost the blue ones, squashed the nice ones and wore the cheap pair out in a month. There were several others before those but I can't even remember their stories. That's why he didn't spend much on the gas station pair.
Now he thinks that if he has a nice case to always put them in he won't lose them, squash them or have any other unforeseen accident. I have my doubts. I think we should just stick to cheap sunglasses and plan on replacing them every couple months.
As our friend Adam would say, this is why we can't have nice things.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


This photo story is backwards so bear with me. This is supposed to be an explanation of what we did in Minnesota last week but the pictures are in reverse order...

We got the news that my grandmother had passed away at the Fongs' on Saturday, the last day of camp. We went to church again on Sunday and then left Chicago on Monday to drive to the Twin Cities. That took about 6 hours and the kids did pretty good. Traffic was even good.

First we visited Terry's friend John Sugihara. John is a former student from Lakeside church who was in the youth group when Terry did it in Chicago. They reminisced about staying in Terry's dorm room all night playing games, then doing the same in his apartment, learning to drive stick in Terry's famous Blazer, climbing Mt. Rushmore w/o me b/c I was sick with mono, all those years of camp. It was fun. We ate pizza, Noah spilled an entire glass of Sprite on his floor and John still said he could just watch Noah play all day b/c he was so entertaining. What a great guy.

Then John got GPS directions to my friends' house in St. Paul - Matt and April! We got there at bedtime but kept the "big kids", Noah and Nathan, up anyway. Evie and Ella went to bed. It was so good to hang out and see that her son does the same things that mine does. That night we stayed in the nicest hotel I've ever been in thanks to John - the Radission. Yeah, sleep number beds and everything. Of course, we didn't discover they were sleep number beds until after we had slept on them. =)

Tuesday, we hung out with April and the kids at the rec center by their house, joined Matt at Chipotle for lunch and talked in the parking lot while trying to keep Nathan from running into the lane. =) We hung out with John after that until we had to leave. John's great. From John's we drove east a couple hours to Willmar where my aunt and uncle live. We stayed the night with them and my Grampa and even got in a mini date to Culvers and Target after the kids were in bed (it's nice to have more than one room with kids!).

Wednesday afternoon we drove another couple hours to Canby, where my Gramma and Grampa grew up and raised their family. 1600 people. We had made reservations at the only motel in town, even gave them my credit card number and told them my dad might be calling to make a reservation as well. Terry went in to sign us in and they told him they didn't have a room b/c we were supposed to call them back and confirm the room. Whatever. I was so irate. And they were very rude to Terry. Don't ever stay at The Tower Motel in Canby. Terrible place. From there we changed, got a room a half hour away and went to the viewing. Thursday was the internment and reception lunch at the church and then we drove 8-9 hours home.

It was good to be home but I still miss everything, or everyone, A LOT. I seem to have gotten used to living out of a suitcase and having a social life.

This is Wednesday before we went to Canby and my Grampa playing with Evie.


Take note of Noah's face. Yeah. Can't sit still for nothin.

She's either "finding her voice" by yelling or she's crying. Yeah, Noah taught her how to yell in the car. =)

Terry and John outside his apartment.

Ella pushing Evie away before we went to the park.

Walking to the rec center.

Checking out the binoculars.


Terry provides the necessary force for the little teeter totter for Nathan and Noah.

what we've been up to

Yesterday afternoon Terry took some time off since he was going to have meetings all night. Noah wanted to swim and we thought that was a good idea. So after I used the opportunity to bribe him to use the potty, we set up a water slide! Noah loved it!

How nice of Terry to hold the umbrella to shade them.

Now you enter the life of a housewife...not too exciting.

This morning Terry accidentally spilled bright red juice in the fridge and on the floor. Oops! I said that's okay b/c I had meant to clean out our fridge for a long time...first time since we've been here. Yikes, I know! But it's done now and looks so nice. I even rearranged the photos on our fridge. Do you see yourself up there? Depends on who you are I guess and if you've sent us a photo. Yeah, I keep them all year until the next Christmas brings updates. Motivation to send us photos? He he he. Only if you care about being on our fridge I guess.

Yeah, Iknow my division in wrong.

The big one on the left top is from ChiKo camp.

Here's how it is. A little bare, but that's okay. No, that's not wine. It's sparkling juice or something from the hospital when Evie was born.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Ardis, my grandmother

This is my Grandmother, Ardis K.:
She passed away last Saturday, August 2nd, 2008, at 730pm. Her husband Ted was at her side as she went to be with Jesus. My family arrived at the hospital shortly thereafter.

Gramma grew up in Canby, MN, and married my Grampa after meeting him on a double date with friends, friends she still has. They used to go dancing. I never knew that till my aunt told me. They moved to a farm where Grampa had dairy cows, corn, beans and wheat. They had four kids total: my dad Steve, Nancy, Jeff and Dan. She become sick with polio between her 3rd and 4th children. She went to the Twin Cities (I think) for treatment and was in an iron lung. She came home confined to a wheelchair, though she could still make some use of her legs - she used to drive us to the Windmill restaurant and then the mall with both feet as long as I could get her wheelchair out of the trunk!

Nancy told me that they did have some help around the house, but Gramma never stopped working - she painted the stairs in their house one half of a stair at a time and then pulled herself up to the next one. The next day when the one side was dry, she sat on the dry paint and scooted down the stairs one at a time to finish. She was a hard working woman. And so kind, and quiet and loving. And she really loved Jesus. I remember her talking to me about Him as a child when I'd sit in her wheelchair in front of her recliner and she'd watch TBN =).

I'm so glad Terry made us go to Hills Alive a few weeks ago. I got to see her for the last time and tell her I loved her and give her a hug. She got to hold Evie and see Noah run around like the spaz that he is. But I wish I could have been at the hospital. She had been having trouble breathing - she was left weak from the polio and breast cancer in 2000. She had a coughing fit through one night and then Grampa called the paramedics who took her to the hospital. I got that call at camp, the night of the campfire. The doctors said she was in chronic respiratory failure and that short of a breathing machine, there was nothing they could do. It was just a matter of time. My aunt and a couple cousins from MN rushed out and were all able to be there shortly after she died. Grampa was the only one in the room though. He said she went quietly. I was thankful for that b/c she had had such a difficult time breathing at home those last few months. She told my dad she was just ready to go home.

When I got the call, I didn't cry immediately. I was sad of course, but most of me was kinda happy. I was happy for her to be with Jesus. I was glad that she was with Jesus standing. No more pain, no more anxiety ridden breathing, just peace and joy and Jesus. Then my aunt told me about how she used to love to dance. Now she gets to dance again! Praise God. I'm so thankful for the hope that we have as Jesus followers.

On the radio on our drive home we were listening to NPR and they had a story about a place in New York State called Inquiry Camp. It was a camp like any other except its purpose was to question God, His existence, His goodness, all of the above and more. Well, most people believe in God the reporter said. Yes, but how many really believe and love Jesus I wondered. So, the reporter just interviewed and observed these little kids as they talked about how unlikely it was that God existed. One said that she looked up in the sky at the stars and that they were so beautiful...a beautiful accident. The most thought provoking part was when the reporter chimed in. She said that most people believe in God to give them hope in death because they are afraid of dying. "What do you think of that?" she asked. A child that has previously been very quiet spoke up and said that he was terrified of death. Then there was silence in the room b/c they were all thinking the same thing - the fear of death.

I am free from the fear of death, "Since the children have flesh and blood, he (Jesus) too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might destroy him who holds the power of death - that is, the devil - and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death." (Hebrews 2:10)

"This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel." (1 Timothy 1:10)

"When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: 'Death has been swallowed up in victory.'
'Where, O death, is your victory?
Where, O death is your sting?'
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ." (1 Corinthians 16:5).

I'm so thankful that I don't have to fear death like those campers. I'm so thankful my Grandmother didn't have to either.

left to right on the bottom: Jeff, Steve, Nancy, Grampa, Dan

My sister Stephanie with Evie
my brother Nathan
My mom with Evie

Stephanie again