Friday, February 11, 2011

Missing Him

I woke up thinking about how much I miss my Grandpa. He's been gone just over 3 years now. It doesn't seem like it can be that long yet it seems like an eternity since I've seen him. I still hear his voice in my ear though.

Gpa always had a joke and a smile. Many times I'll hear a piece of news and think, "I wonder what Gpa will think of this!" Many more times I"ll be trying to figure something out, where someone lived or how someone is related and I'll go to the phone to call him and remember he's not there to answer.

I'm really sad that Gramp never got to meet my son. I doubt he would have understood all the intricacies of adoption - the heartache, the cost, the joy, and the loss - but he would have delighted in his second great-grandson.

I was very, very fortunate to have my Grandpa for almost 93 years. I do realize that is very rare and most people don't get to experience such a thing.

My Grandpa was an awesome maker of peanut brittle. My sister has carried on that tradition. It's not something I can bring myself to do.

He and my Grandma were married for 50 years before she succumbed to cancer. He lived another 23 years without her. One time he was asked if he would ever marry again (like several of the other old guys in the community). His reply was, "why would you ever want to go through that (seeing someone you love die) again?"

After Grandma first died he'd bring little debbies to all the family dinners and functions. As time went on he became quite the baker! He was well known for his treats, candies, and cookies. He loved to take them to friends and family.

Grandpa and Grandma mowed and maintained the local township cemetery where Gramp was a trustee (like his father before him). Once Grandma was gone my sister and I helped him mow and he'd give us the money to spend at Christmas time.

When we were little we'd spend days at a time with Grandpa and Grandma. Grandpa would fall asleep in his chair and we'd call him on it. He'd say, "I was just resting my eyes".

Gramp had a blue Chevy truck we'd go bumping around the country in. When we moved to the farm from Knoxville I remember Grandpa making a wrong turn and me getting him headed in the right direction. I was 7.

When we'd go to Waterloo he'd always stop and get us an ice cream at the Dairy Cone.

When my sister graduated from college it was hotter than hell in the gym. Gpa had unbuttoned his collar and had his clip on tie clipped on his shirt pocket! Grandpa got sick right when I graduated from college so it didn't really register with him.

Grandpa was an old guy born in 1915 so he did have certain opinions about certain things but those opinions could change. My best friend is a gay man. Grandpa knew. He said he didn't understand but Brian was a good man. The only thing he needed to change was to "get a damn haircut!"

I just miss him. He was flawed and could be hard - but aren't we all? He was such a big part of my life for my WHOLE life. I still find it hard to believe/remember that he's gone.

Saturday, January 01, 2011

None baby stuff

(Well, I'm sure he'll sneak his way in somehow!)

We had a lovely Christmas. I made the kids and dog pose nicely before the present opening occured. Everyone was quite happy with what Santa brought them. Heath is growing so quickly that things that had been purchased and wrapped 2 weeks prior had to be exchanged!

We took Ryan sledding up at the school. There was a little "mogul" built into the main run. He had a blast!

We've had A LOT of freaking snow! At least it was light and fluffy (and the wind didn't blow).

There's a fire hydrant in there somewhere!

Nicky got his ACT scores back. We're VERY proud of him!

3 Months old!

My how he's growing! He's unoffically 18.5# and 25 inches long. He's my little chubba lubba.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

2 months old!

Heath had a great 2 month check up! He's 12.9# now and 23.75" long! He's in the 75th percentile for height and weight up from the 25th so we were very happy!

I started back to work on the 29th (my birthday). As I was hauling him and his stuff into Daycare I twinged my back. I've pretty much been out of commission since. I missed two days of work and also only worked 2 half days. Nick is having to go to and from the babysitter's with me so he can carry him in and out. It's too much weight for me at the moment.

I think my chiro treatment yesterday (the 5th one!) may have finally turned the tide. I'm feeling lots better and was able to work a full day today.

Now to get the Christmas decorations up!

There isn't a Catch! Free Cards!

My favorite Christmas cards are simple. A simple, elegant image with a simple message is what I like best. I love getting photo cards from far flung family and friends and seeing how their kids have changed and grown, the trips they’ve taken, or the pets that have joined their family. I really like the look of this card:

The joy at having a baby this holiday season is something we want to share with all!
With Heath’s adoption I have had a chance to create some wonderful cards. I wasn’t able to make his birth announcements with Shutterfly because a professional photographer friend went created and printed announcements for us as a surprise gift. However, if he hadn’t done so I would have used Shutterfly for sure!

I’ve had many, many compliments on the Baptism announcements I created. It was simple and elegant. I used the Jolie Bebe Blue with a picture of Heath when he was 12 days old.

I have to say though that my very favorite product from Shutterfly is the photo book. I find myself creating the 8x8 size time and again.

I’ve created a photo book of our trip to Venice. I also created one and then ordered two more copies for the kids of our Westward Ho Trip to Glacier and Yellowstone National Parks. I may create another of our A to Z trip from last summer when we visited Arizona and Zion National Park.

I encourage you to check out Shutterfly and this awesome promotion for 50 free cards!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

1st Official Photo Shoot

Uncle Brian came over for our first "official" photo shoot when Heath was 12 days old.

This Bibs outfit is a gift from his birthparents. It's got the cutest little high top sneakers to go with it.

He's really mild mannered and easy going. He's not a big fan of opening his eyes, though.

Loves to sleep with his hands up by his face.
Now at 3 weeks old he's awake from longer periods of time each day. He's pretty hungry and has been eating 6 oz instead of the usual 4 oz.

This is the outfit he wore for finalization. He is truly and finally and irrevocably legally ours forever!!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


We've added to the Chaos! Welcome to Heath Arnold! He arrived September 29, 2010 at 9:54 am. He weighed 6#13 oz and was 20" long.

Now it's 2 weeks later. He's a pound heavier and a half inch longer.


Saturday, August 07, 2010

summer is almost over

The kids are back from summer visitation.

Christy returned with a turtle. Joy. We went and bought $93 worth of turtle supplies, learned he'll live for 25 -30 years...and she said she didn't think it would be that complicated and she wasn't planning on a lifetime commitment. Thank you Jesus! He's been released in the wilds and I'm planning a return trip to the pet store.

Nick is thinner and taller.

We school shopped and hair cutted today. (I know that's not a real word). We finally told them where we're going on family vacation. We're flying to AZ tomorrow to see the Grand Caynon, Northern AZ and Zion Nat'l Park. We'll be gone a week.

I got promoted at work. I know sit at the front desk. I am an Administrative Assistant how works M-Th 8 to 3, refuses to work on Fridays and gets to go on vacation whenever I want! I love my job!!

BIG NEWS!! We've been picked by an expectant mom to parent her child. He's due in October! We're having a baby!!

So needless to say...things are a little more chaotic than usual around here!

Monday, June 28, 2010

CA Trip I

Mom and I drove to California in the beginning of June for a family reunion. We went out through, Missouri, Kansas, Southern Colorado, S Utah and S Nevada entering California around Mono Lake and Yosemite. We came home on I-80This pictures are in random blogger-ific order.

This is Amelia Earhart's birthplace on the Missouri River is Kansas.

The Modesto, CA Farmer's market was a riot of sweet cherries and rainier cherries. Cheap and Delicious!

Yosemite is still magnificant and awe-inspiring! This is from Olmstead Point:

The Garden of the Gods is pretty spectacular too!

With the snow melt Yosemite had very full waterfalls and water flowing everywhere.

This is Upper and lower Yosemite Falls from the valley floor.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Sun Sum Summer time!

It's finally officially summer Here. I can't believe I haven't posted since March. I'm a working woman now (26 hours a week!). Which I love but it has seriously cut into my blogging time!

So here's an update since march:

  • New York City ROCKED!~! I can't wait to go back! We were there Fri afternoon until Monday afternoon. We ate Cuban, visited the Empire State Building, the Statue of Liberty, Times Square (we really were a half a block away!), Hells Kitchen, Ground Zero, the Intrepid Sea Air and Space Museum, The UN, Grand Central Station, Broadway (we saw Mary Poppins and A little night music). I would spend ALL my extra money on shows if I lived there. We went to Amy's breads, I had a delish cupcake from a famous cupcake place whose name I can't remember. We saw Bryant Park and the NYC Library! Catherine Zeta Jones almost stepped on me! We went to Rockefeller Center and ST Patrick's cathedral. We had a great time and stayed at the Paramount Hotel.
  • The kids left for the summer. Both of them managed to move on to the next grade though it was in doubt because of nick's laziness and procrastination. So one kid is on the honor roll with a 4.0 and the other could have been but instead barely passed sophomore English. They're back Aug 6th.
  • Mom and I drove to CA for a family reunion. We were gone 12 days. We drove Hwy 50 through CO, UT, and NV. We visited Manitou Springs, Yosemite, Mono Lake, the San Joaquin valley and Oroville. We purchased pottery thus propping up the CA economy. We brought the Aunt home with us.
  • We had the dining room painted a lovely shade of light grey. The trim is bright white. The outlets have been switched and the carpet has been cleaned.
  • Kurt and I planted a lot of new perennials. We attempted to liberate my hostas from the timber weeds at the farm.
  • I got "promoted" at work. I'm now an administrative assistant working M-Th from 8a-3p rather than working 8-10 hours whenever I feel like it.
  • We still don't have baby although we talked to a potential expectant mom (it fell through, but it was exciting). We're starting Year 2 of waiting.
  • Kurt goes to Tucson Sun-Wed.
  • Tomorrow I'm trying acupuncture for the first time.

I think that pretty much sums up what's been happening around here. I'd post some pictures if I was on the other computer.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

New York II

We're going to see A Little Night Music with Catherine Zeta-Jones and Angela Lansbury for the matinee on Sunday.

We may try to get standby tickets to either SNL or their dress rehearsal. The host that weekend is Tina Fey so it might be kind of difficult (as if getting there by 7 am won't be difficult enough!).

I'm worried about being poorly dressed for the restaurants and such. I bet they're used to shlubby tourists though. However, I think Kurt and I are better behaved, dressed etc than the usual clueless tourist.

It's only 3 weeks away! WOW!


In February, I saw in the paper that there was T shirt quilting class being taught nearby. I've always wanted to make one out of my high school and concert tshirts! I thought it would be perfect for Rikki and me to do!

It was to held for 4 consecutive monday nights. We'll we had shitty weather so by the 4th and final Monday we'd only had two classes! Rikki and I ended up going for two entire saturdays as well and we still aren't done.

Turns out I didn't have as many tshirts as I thought either. I had to buy and create additional shirts to get to the 15 that I needed.

Here's a layout of my shirts once I got them cut and fused.

Here's a shot of me working on my "fatties" which is a tshirt attached to a piece of sashing and repeat!

Et Voila! It's my quilt top assembled with the fatties, skinnies, cornerstones and one of the borders.

I've now added a second wider border and it's ready to be backed and quilted! I'm having the quilting done (or I will). Once it's quilted I'll have to take another class to learn how to do the binding.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Poor Kid

Nick had his 4 impacted wisdom teeth out on Friday. The poor guy. He kept throwing up and had the misfortune of finding out the meaning of suppository. Kurt got back from Vegas a couple of hours after we got home from the surgeon. Nick was still pretty out of it.

He's been doing really well. They were off school yesterday and then had a late start today so he had a decent recovery time.

It's nice that we could pay for it with our HSA. I'm glad Kurt deals with getting us signed up for all that stuff!

New York State of Mind

Yep, that's right! I'm finally going to see the bright lights of New York City! Kurt and I have booked tickets for the second weekend in April! It'll be a whirlwind. I'm already over planning but we've got the hotel, Statue of Liberty tix, and theater tickets!

Anyone have any suggestions of things to do? We're going Fri-Mon and seeing the show Sunday afternoon.

I'm soooooo excited!!