Thursday, December 09, 2010

Life Never Slows Down

So you'd think I would have known, wouldn't you. A picture at graduation like this....

Of course it couldn't be any surprise! But she's been dating alot of other guys, thought she was in love many times... what makes THIS ONE so different? LOL

He called me before he asked her... before the big date. He had a question for me. I had a few questions for him. I was very impressed when I asked him "How do you KNOW she's the one?" I'd heard from Kristina already, "The spirit told me." He said the same thing. And I know the spirit is a powerful witness but when you hear that about nearly every guy she dates... well it's hard not to be skeptical, as much as it drives her crazy that you are. Surely at least Mom should have more faith. But I hadn't had a witness yet. So I was very impressed when he went on to tell me that she fit everything he wanted in a wife except one thing. Turns out he'd made a list just like Kristina had. and the one thing she didn't fit - she's not neat and tidy. LOL Very cute. I asked him about their life together and what he was going to do when things got rough. He said he was going to look to the future and remember where they were going and what they were building. I was pretty impressed. In tears, I finally told him, "Yes you can marry my daughter!"

And it happened. It would have happened even if I hadn't said yes. It would have happened even if he hadn't called me. But I am so happy to be included and so glad for Kristina. She got a really good guy. I'm very excited for them!

So this little lover is Toby! Sister Carter couldn't take him back to England with her and his breeder wouldn't take him back. So on condition that I get him fixed, I took in this beautiful boy worth $2,000!! Yep... he is a champion persian cat! Isn't he a doll? In the above picture he is begging me with those sweet eyes not to go to work that day. I was sorely tempted as you can imagin! LOL

Ryan has decided THIS is the cat that he's finally going to be able to connect with. So he's in charge of feeding him in the morning and evening. And he spends ALOT of time with him. Toby is such a sweet and loving cat. Earlier this week when I started getting nervous about taking a $2000 cat to the vet to turn him into a $20 cat, he somehow knew, and slept with me all night. It was funny cause he hasn't spent the night with me like that since.

Course.... he isn't quite the same since then either!


Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Wireless Internet - kinda

So now that I have wireless internet I can get back to blogging pretty quickly. It's realy a treat to be able to surf the internet at home soo fast. I mainly got it so that Amber could take some online classes during her off semester. Turns out that BYU-I lets you take online classes during the off track semester. I wish I'd known that before. KRsitina could have taken a few. But oh well. This will allow Amber to redo the first anatomy class and get started on some foundations that she passed up in order to take the anatomy classes. and hopefully she can get in the medical terminology class which is the last prerequisite for the Medical Assistant program. Yea, she didn't make it into nursing. She'll have to get in later and possibly into another program at another school. But if she has her CMA she'll have a better chance of getting into another program. If nothing else, she'll have a job. So yea... wireless.

It's just too bad that it turned out the old home computer doesn't do WIRELESS!! It'll have to stay connected to the ethernet cable in order to be online. ((((SIGH))))

Saturday, January 02, 2010

Is it possible to be this happy??

This Christmas has just been the best ever! I've been so happy lately. And it started even before the girls came home from college. But now that they're here, the joy is even greater. Our family can't seem to stop laughing! The time we spend together is full of giggles and laughs and just enjoying each other.

We Secret Santa'd a family here in town and had the best time ever. On Christmas Eve, we went caroling to some of our Favorite friends' and the best part of that night was all the laughing and talking we did when we got back in the car AFTER the caroling! I mean, it was great!

Christmas morning was joyful and the presents didn't take too long. So no one was tired and worn out. We appreciated everything, even Ryan's homemade gifts. Oh that boy is so talented!! Game night came soon after, which we spent at KFC cause Krsitina had to work. The people she works with couldn't believe we had game night at KFC! New Year's Eve and New Year's Day were so much fun. We celebrated and ate and yelled at the TV at the football games and had the best time! Then today, after a LONG sleep-in, we took off in the afternoon for Albany. My mom sent the kids gift cards for Kmart and that's the closest one we could find. We shopped like crazy and then had dinner at Carl's Jr. and had the best time ever! The pictures are a little hazy because no one could keep still long enough! But look at the laughter! Is it possible to be this happy? Oh how I love this time the Lord has given us. I will treasure it always and always!!

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Once upon a time, a long time ago.... Ok well it was about 6 years ago I think.... When Kristina was a freshman and playing in North Eugene's band. She was so excited about it and they were so busy doing stuff in the community. Her excitement was contagious and I tried to be there for every concert and every competition. One day, they were at LCC doing some kind of workshop that included some scholarships. I came to the auditorium to listen to North's band when it was their turn to play and be judged. I don't remember if the bands combined or if I was just listening to Jazz band. And maybe Kristina was a sophomore by then. However it came to be, there I was listening to the most amazing solo trumpet! A curly headed blone haired boy stood in the front and played the most wonderful lead I'd ever heard. I remember the judges' comments about how he'd never heard a rock song jazzed up like that. He took a song we hear alot on the radio and made it jazzy and soul and it was just amazing. He ended up getting a scholarship from that workshop! I don't know if he ever did anything with his talent but forever afterward, I held that performance as the epitamy of school bands. The sort of goal or level you could reach if you REALLY love band and work hard. I always had a little hope or wish or goal in my heart that maybe one of my kids will have an opportunity like that. And Yea Kristina had her BIG solo at her graduation plus the fame of the saxaphone girls in Jazz band. And Amber had her big night too playing a duet with Kristina as they led the band into a song. And Nicholas has had bunches of the most amazing solos since he started playing the Trumpet.

But this last Thursday, IT HAPPENED!! I couldn't believe it! I knew Nicholas had a big solo coming up and he'd been practicing that song. But I never understood what it was REALLY going to be. Until I saw him being brought to the front!!! And then that soulful sound of "Someone to Watch Over Me" coming out of his trumpet!! Oh my gosh! This was it! The epitamy, the goal!! What I considered one of the highest levels... the highest honor! He was playing the melody of the entire song while the band played the background stuff. In fact, once the lights came on and I could see the program, he was the FEATURED player in that song! WOW! I couldn't help myself. As dumb as it may seem, I absolutely burst into tears!! Unbelievably, my little wish, my little hope for my children, one that I'd never even told a single solitary soul, came true. AND IT WAS BEAUTIFUL!!!! I mean... really amazing!!! I put the video on my facebook if you want to see/listen to it. Just amazing! I can't believe he got to do that. Just incredible!

That same night we also had a concert at Madison to be at. Heather and her friend are the new and upcoming saxaphone girls! They were just beautiful!!

And Ryan is our newest trumpet player! This was his first concert and he did really well!! He was very inspired and excited about his accomplishments that night!
Anyway, just had to share! I love band in the schools. I know they're cutting programs everywhere but the kids will lose out on sooo much if they ever got rid of any band program!! Look at how far they could go. This stuff even could result in scholarships for college! Wow.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Road Trip With Nicholas

Nicholas was so great during our whole trip to Idaho and back. He was so strong and reliable and NEVER complained. He loaded the car like it was a puzzle to be figured out.

Check out all that self-confidence. I really could not have done this without him!

Everyone took turns driving, even Nicholas. By the end of the trip, he’d wracked up 8 hours of driving. Only 25 more hours before he gets his license now!

He was just as happy as the rest of us to finally get to Rexburg and have a real meal! What a treat!

He and I made 5 trips to Kristina’s shed and he hauled up all the heaviest boxes to the second floor. We were sure grateful that they didn’t live on the 3rd floor. With all the trips up and down those stairs, he never complained. I told him later I knew he was just as tired as me but I admired him for not complaining. He said “What would be the point of complaining? It wouldn’t do any good.” Man, I wish I could be more like him!

We took one chilly evening to walk around the Rexburg Temple. I’m so glad we did this cause in the end, this was the only chance we had to go see it. We had our church clothes with us though, just in case we had the chance to go in but it never happened.

On the way home, we stopped at the top of this huge hill/mountain. If you look closely you can see how the road twists and turns ahead of us, finally coming off the hill in a long straight road. The scenery was beautiful but 6 miles of a 6% downgrade was very hard on my breaks. I insisted on driving this part of the trip. Nicholas didn’t mind.

When we got to the Columbia River, we stopped to admire the view. Nicholas couldn’t believe the great reception he got when trying to send his sisters a picture that he took of the river. I love this picture. What kind of caption would you put on this? "E.T. where are you?" "Can you hear me now?" "Beam me up Scotty!" LOL

The day after we got home, Heather and Ryan went for their first day of school but his wasn’t till the next day. So we took the opportunity to visit the auto-wrecking yard, a trip he’d been bugging me to make for some time. He was a like a kid in a candy store, looking at all the wrecked vehicles. I just tried not to get broken glass in my flip-flops. LOL

The trip with Nicholas was so much fun. I enjoyed the time I got to spend with him and I appreciate more than ever his strong and steady personality with a bit of humor thrown in. What a great guy he is!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Traveling to College

Hurray! We made it to Idaho! I never thought we'd get out of Oregon. Let me tell you! A long trip is made longer by trying to travel through the night! I was so glad when morning found us in Idaho!

College girls with the Snake River behind them. We made many stops along the way. Our car was packed to overflowing so cramped legs and sore bottoms and sleepy eyes had us stopping just about every 2 hours to stretch and switch drivers. I'll never drive during the night again! But this part of the trip really was very beautiful!

When we finally made it to Rexburg, we were so happy to easily find the apartment complex they were moving in to. It's right across the street from the stadium. This pic looks like an ad for the place. LOL But they probably won't stay there for their next semester. They need more storage space for 6 girls in the apartment. There was only one drawer in the kitchen and hardly any cabinet space. They're going to look around to see if there are any other apartments they'd rather have that has more storage for 6 girls.

A quick and easy check in and we were moving into the apartment very quickly. It was pretty exciting to settle into a new place.

This mess was after 5 trips to the storage unit where Kristina and her friends stored their stuff. Compared to the other college students emptying out their storage unit, the girls did a very good job packing it into boxes and organizing it..... even though it DOES look like a mess in this picture. LOL Amber only had her suitcases to unpack. She had it all put away very quickly. It took the other girls a little longer. :-)

An unbelievable crowd at the welcome assembly. The welcome had just started and there were still people streaming in, trying to find a seat. In the end there was standing room only. In this pic, Kristina and Heather are sitting with Kathy and some other girls. Section F, right under the F. Unless you were there, you really can hardly see them! But isn't that an amazing crowd? Wow!
It's good to have them at school now and settled in. It's alittle quiet at home but we're going to adjust ok.

The last one in Contacts

How interesting that all of my children ended up wearing glasses like me. I got my first pair of glasses when I was 5 years old and my bad vision progressed till I was a -9 in both eyes by the time I became an adult. And now the kids all have bad eye sight too. And all of them were able to get contacts by the time they were 12 or 13. Now Ryan is the last one to get his contacts. Good thing too cause he's such a handsome kid!

This picture is when he was trying to put them in for the first time. I love his eye. Click on it to see the larger picture! It's great!

The next one is what I consider the perfect ad for contacts. He just got them both in for the first time and was really excited about it.

And here he is walking around the store, excited about what he now can see sooo clearly. Really, his glasses were just so bad and insurance would only cover new glasses or contacts every 2 years. I couldn't afford to get him new ones with the right prescription so being able to truly see with contacts was like a miracle!

Friday, June 05, 2009

Another Graduate

So Amber is graduating too and will go to BYU-Idaho also. How exciting. I missed getting the girls into a dorm so Amber will be sharing an apartment with Kristina and her friends, living off campus across the street from the school! What a thrill! I've been having such a good time planning for graduation. I can't wait to see my mom.
and thrill upon thrill - Amber won another scholarship! how incredible!! She has her Peace Health Mentorship scholarship which will be very large. Now she's added another $1000 to the pot. PLUS the Pell grant and the Award of Excellence she got from the school! What a relief! I also have talked to the nursing department to make sure we are planning the correct classes for her to take so she can apply for the nursing program by next March! I'm so excited and sooo NERVOUS for her. she has to keep her GPA up to AT LEAST a 3.7!! which I KNOW she can. But still.......
Anyway, here is my other most beautiful girl, all grown up. How does this happen? It seems like it was just yesterday she was clutching her little dolls and singing at the top of her voice while standing on the couch! And now look at her! No more dolls. Off to experience the big world out there!

A Glimpse of College Life

Kristina and I have been having fun with the webcams at school. It's been such a treat for me to see just a tiny part of her life there. To stretch across the miles and see a glimpse of normal everyday life for her has been so much fun. I've been teased alot about stalking her or not letting go or whatever. No one seems to understand how teeny of a glimpse it really is or how important that connection is to us. When kids are so far from home, isn't it normal to crave some kind of connection, no matter how small? Surely it must be. We talk on the phone nearly everyday. She either has some new excitement going on or a worry to talk over with me. And more often than not, somehow I come up with just the right thing to say to her about whatever her worries are. We're just talking about it all... mostly she just needs to vent... and suddenly, I've said exactly the thing she needed to hear. It's so amazing! I never knew I was so wise! LOL

Well the top picture is of her at the testing center today. She had 2 tests today that she really worried about. One she said would be fairly easy. But the science one, she was pretty nervous about. She prayed and prayed over these tests and educated her roommate about the subject, giving her a unique (to her) way to study and then called me to tell me all about how food breaks down in the body and all the long scientific names. Amazing! The girl could be a nutritionist! LOL I suggested she study for another hour and DON'T rush! And she did. Then she texted me that she was just walking in and when she got there, look at the beautiful smile she flashed at the camera! LOL Funny girl!

The second and third pictures are at the MC - I can't remember what MC stands for but it's the cafeteria. With some urging from me, she's splurging regularly on a fruity drink or a snack and taking it easy between classes. So the second one is her about to get something to eat - but oh wait. She has to text her mother to come see her on the webcam first! LOL That's what she's doing there... texting me. LOL

and the last one is actually the first one we set up. she was afraid of being to obvious by standing in front of the camera and waving or something. See the drink in her hand? While she was sitting down and slurping on it, she had been on the phone with me. I asked her if she could see the webcam that was there. she looked around and said "Oh yes, I see it". I told her, "go stand in front of it." So she said yes she would after she finished her drink. LOL She was there for like 2 seconds and I was lucky to even see her. LOL It really is impossible to "stalk" someone on the school webcams!

So we're just silly girls. One of us at college and having a blast and the other, wishing sooo much that I could do something fun and exciting like that too!