Tuesday, December 15, 2009

funny story

so today I am in a meeting with several people in the smaller of my classrooms. The whole meeting I smelled old pee. I thought at first it was the lady next to me, but she is always dressed nice and well couldn't be so then I thought maybe one of my students had gone and we hadn't noticed. The whole time I was thinking we need to mop, why hasn't anyone else smelled this until now, how do I tell the students you can't pee in class. Then I went back to the office and the smell was there too. So I decided to take a deeper whif of my jacket, the one I have been wearing all week, and well there was the source. AUSSIE had left his mark, now I wondered when had he done it, for how many days have I been the lady smelling like pee. and what else in my house has he marked. Oh the joy of dogs! Happy Tuesday!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

walk by faith and not by sight

Over the last few weeks I have struggled with my emotional state. Ups and downs and not really having any good reason for being so moody. There are many reasons that from a worldly perspective I would be moody based on my circumstances, but God doesn't call me to worldly standards or accept my worldly complaints, b/c they are just that complaints and complaints are a sign of not being content. Why am I wishing for my plan, when God's is so much better (Rm 8:28) Why? because I have been walking by sight. I see others happily living life with spouses and kids and living thier dreams out and I think man God see that is what I wanted why didn't you let me have that? why not this? why now? why didn' you? and the list of questions goes on. But where my focus should be is not on what I see but on Christ. I should be walking in faith trusting God knows what He is doing. He choose me, he saved me, he loves me, he forgave me, he will raise me in the last day(Jn 6) Why do I need anything else? I don't. I need to trust. I often listen to music (agian wishing for a talent God did not give me) I bought this new CD and this song convicted me. It is simply titled Faith by Kieth and Krystin Getty
"by faith we see the hand of God in the light of creation's grand design
in the lives of those who prove his faithfulness who walk by faith and not by sight
by faith our fathers roamed the earth with the power of his promise in thier hearts of a holy city built by God's own hand a place where peace and justice reign,

we will stand as children of the promise we will fix our eyes on him our souls reward til the race is finished and the work is done, we walk by faith and not by sight

by faith the prophets saw a day when the long for messiah would appear with the power to break the chains of sin and death and rise triumphant from the grave
by faith the church was called to go in the power of the spirit to the lost to deliever captives and to preach good newsin every corner of the earth

we will stand as children of the promise we will fix our eyes on him our souls reward til the race is finished and the work is done, we walk by faith and not by sight

by faith this mountian shall be moved and the power of the gospel shall prevail for we know in Christ all things are possible for all who call upon His name

we will stand as children of the promise we will fix our eyes on him our souls reward til the race is finished and the work is done, we walk by faith and not by sight

I need to be focused on the reward of my soul-Christ! My race is not finished and God obviously has more work for me to do, but He promises to help me and complete the work he started in me. I need to walk by faith focused on Christ and not by what I see(or how I feel). So stand on the promises of God (there are so many) and walk by faith knowing that God has a much better plan for my life that is for my good and His glory!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

joy of service

Today was the Thanksgiving pot luck at church. Anyone who knows me knows how much I really do not like pot lucks. However in the last few years (at least 5) I have been in the kitchen for most of the time making sure the food is hot and put out and organized and that we don't run out until everyone is fed (stuffed). In the last year I have taken a step back from ministries at the church but today jumped back in and felt so good. Tired and dehydrated but I truly enjoyed serving in this small way. It was just a reminder of how God blesses us when we choose to serve him no matter how the service looks, big or small. I am slowly living life agian, not for me hopefully but for Him perhaps cleaning dishes and reheating dishes is a start. I have so much to be thankful for. Today Im thankful for the ability to serve.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

I want to bake

ok, I am in a baking mood. I like the holidays just because it gives me an excuse to bake. on my list of things to try are traditional apple pie, dutch apple pie, pumpkin pie, chocolate tart, peanut butter fudge, layered pumpkin bread, apple crisp, amy's yummy frozen stars,and the usual cookies. some of these i have made before others are new, some just different recipes. the problem is I have papers to write and a house to clean and thanksgiving is still to far away to start any of these. what a dilemma. does anyone want to clean my house and write a paper or two, I will pay you in baked goods!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

prayer request

some of you know what a crazy place my school is at the moment. We are up to be taken over by whoever (public or private agency) writes the best plan for how to improve our school. It has created a very tense work environment (more than it already was). So my first request is that you pray for my sanity and my witness at work in the negative environment. My second request is for next year. We wont know until Feb. what is going to happen with the school but if a different group takes over I need a new job. There are a few things I need wisdom in determining, 1st what to teach- I have 3 teaching credentials (which really only makes my life more difficult) as I can teach special education at any grade level or I can teach science at the Jr. High or High school level, the 3rd credential opens up administrative jobs, which are not open at the moment. 2nd is where, do I switch districts or countries, the idea of teaching abroad in the mission field has come up several times in the last 2 years, but a lot of things have to be done to make that happen (house and dogs) so pray I don't rush into things and it is a God guided decision and not an emotional one.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Dana College homecoming

I went back to Dana where I hadn't been in ten years. WOW that is a long time. While at Dana I had my share of good and not so good times. The best part of college were my friends. Who were more like family than I realized at the time. So Friday night we got together and hung out. It really didn't seem like 10years had passed as we seemed to pick up right where we left off. This is the group. top row: Shane is holding his son Brecken, Matt, me, Big Daddy Holtam (Ryan), bottom row are Deneen, Janelle holding Evelyn, Lindsay holding Kailey, and Allison
I could tell you a million stories about each one in the group but I know it would only entertain me.
This is what I woke up to on Saturday morning. SNOW! oh the joy of living outside cali. Seasons happen although this was the earliest it has snowed in Nebraska in 22 years. so I still wore my flips! not much changes in 10 years

Kailey had fun building snowmen with the snow. She is so cute! Lindsay and Craig are great parents!

The football field where there was a game going on however just like when I was a student we didn't watch much of the game. Rather I went exploring the really nice new gym and athletic facility they have built since I left.

look Im still in building. I found pics from when i was there. can you find me?

Saturday night they had a beer garden, funny thing is the campus was and is a dry campus so this picture is pretty funny to have Dana college cups with beer in them leagally, and no Lindsay and I still not drinkers agian somethings dont change.

Janelle and I

We convinced an RA to let us back into Holling hall where most of us had lived at one point in our four years at Dana. She had been in homecoming court and well so had Allison, Deneen, and Shane so thus the picture op.

Sunday morning we went to Chapel where Shane preached. Ok some things do change in 10 years as I would have never guessed that Shane would be a pastor. He did a great job.

We then went and had brunch which reminded me of the cafeteria food that I had gained so much weight from over my four years there, but during the brunch people who had been in chorale sang and once agian for some reason my friends in college musically tallented and I am there to listen in awe.
The rest of the afternoon was spent talking with Lindsay which was great. I had such a great weekend. I didn't realize how much I missed my friends until you see them agian and then are forced to leave them yet agian. God truly blessed me with them while at Dana.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

runners are crazy

runners are a funny. this morning as I ran I couldn't help but look up at what appeared to be 1000s of people running this 10K. Why? good question, some Im sure it was for fitness (these are the ones in all Nike gear warming up as if thier lives depended on the outcome of this city race)others for thier kids (crazy parents making thier little ones run such a distance), others for the sheer fun of it(these are the ones wearing pink too toos and wild socks or the wedding party to be dressed in well wedding atire). Me, because I can. As I was not feeling all that good for most of the race i wondered why do I do this? the only answer I came up with is because I can. I am so grateful that God has given me the ability, no matter how slow compared to others, to finish races. I think that I will take the opportunity to run more. It was a reminder that God has given us talents each different but they are ours to enjoy and share and glorify Him. So whether your a runner, a walker, a preacher, a social worker, do it all for His glory!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

catching up!

Ok it has been a really long time since I posted. but since I am home today due to pink eye in both eyes and have no TV and don't feel like cleaning but cant go to the beach b/c eyes hurt so bad when light hits them, I thought I would blog.

First on monday took all three of the boys for a walk at the same time by myself. If you have had the privaledge of seeing how hyper my dogs are multiply that by 10 as to their energy level when you bring out the leashes and harness. Now imagine me on my knees trying to put the harness on them three dogs jumping up and down and ontop of me and each other I some how managed to get them on with only a bruised pinky finger(didn't realize this til Tues morning painful sprain) then the joy of getting them in the car. The puppies jump in no problem but big sam cant so I have to lift him up while yelling at the other two not to jump out of the car. We finally arrive at the park and I get all three out praying that I can grab the leashes as they leap out of the car before they get away. Sam found some interesting sent right by the car and stopped to sniff Aussie took that opportunity to mark sam by peeing on his head! Next we start our climb up the hill sniffing as we go things were going alright until sam had to take care of his business and assumed the squat position, Max had to check out what he was doing and walked right under his tail as Sam relieved himself. So now Sam is marked by Aussie, Max is pooed on by Sam and the walk continues. They sniff and stop and mark everything and finally max who lifts his leg to pee only then puts it down and squats somehow got aussie. So at least it is fair! we made it to the top but I let them lead the way they found this not so well traveled path down and max stopped I looked he had huge thorn covered thing stuck on his leg then I look down they are on me 2-3 inch needles sticking out of these things MI rax got his out with his teeth but Aussies was stuck so there I was on a hill 3 dogs tring to use the lease to pull this thing out of aussie's food one needle remained pulled that out while trying to keep them all still as to not roll down the hill. Really you had to be there too funny. I really do love them!!

I realize that I never blogged about the last leg of the trip. The Gold Coast. It is about 4hour flight (maybe less) up there from Melborne. The last day I was in Melborne was the windiest day ever, warnings for people not to go outside, supper rain I have never seen it rain that hard so fast ever!! the next day was not as bad but still really windy. So the plane ride for the first hour not so fun Dramamine was a must! When I got there took a shuttle to my hotel which was beautiful, if you stay in the fancy hotel you get this really swank glass bottle of carbinated water which I think is gross so I added my emern C vitamin packet to it and drank up!! I then went to find a computer to find a hotel for the next 3 days. no luck that night so I went back to the hotel and went for a swim in the pool. it was beautifully landscaped with trees all around and lights, only I was the only one there so I felt like I was staring in a horror film where some creepy murderer was going to ambush me in the pool. So I didn't stay long. The next morning went and found a hotel but left my stuff at this one so I could enjoy the beach without having all my bags with me. Broad Beach is where I was at. It is broad! lots of white sand. I hung out there watching the locals and the not so locals surf and play. The next day I took a bus to Byron Bay. This is where I stayed in college. The town has changed some, but for the most part it is the same drug filled hippy town it was in college. The place we actually lived is about a 5 min. drive from Byron or 20 min walk (if you know the way which I forgot somehow in the 11 years that I was away) so I walked for about 3 hours by way of the lighthouse and 3 other beaches then took the 5 min. cab ride after all. Tallow beach is the name of my beach, It is the most beautiful beach in the world I think. It is now a dog recreation area so I had a great time watching the playful pups who like the people of australia are all really nice. Then went had dinner which although they said had no garlic really did, not a fun night as I waited for the bus which was over an hour late. Sitting at the bus stop however there was a live Irish band playing at the bar which was fun to listen to. But a reminder of how lost this town is. It is like going back in time hippies everywhere high on meth or drunk to the point of not being able to stand up. its a very scary place at night, but a place that intrigues me the same. The next day was my last day in Australia so I went to an outdoor market to get some presents for people and then hung out at the beach. I packed my bags and thought I better eat a good dinner so went to the steakhouse next to the hotel, but it wasn't very good:( Next morning got up to take a cab to this random hotel where a shuttle would meet me, it turns out the cab took me to the wrong hotel and I had to walk about 1/4 mile or more to the actual place with all my stuff, yea for being a determined person! It was late then we hit traffic in Brisbane due to a marathon being run so you know how you are supposed to be at the airport at least 2 hours before well I got there about 1 hour before and the line was out the door. The Transplant world games were held the same time I was there and Team USA was on my flight. so lots of people!! which also meant every seat was full. the flight was long but I watched 4 movies I think and people watched. I am glad that I had the opportuntiy to go and have learned a lot which I will share maybe later or better in a real conversation! but thats my trip,

now Im back at work full time and school full time and wishing I was doing neither, but thankful that God has provided both and looking for opportunities to share his love in both places.

Monday, August 24, 2009

heaps of wildlife

Today was wildlife day. We drove to this island and saw the biggest pelicans ever really bigger than most of you reading this. then off to a farm where there were cows (hairy ones), new born goats and lambs (3 days old), horses, sheep (ready to be sheered), big goats and varriety of birds. Then off to Koala park. Lots of pictures for Leilani (its against the law to touch them, so no pics of me holding them) but one with a baby too cute and others hanging on for dear life at the tops of these trees with monster winds swinging them every which way there were also wallabies there too. Then off to penguin parade. Its a beach where these penguins nest and at night they come on shore, too cute. they are the fairy penguins so they are tiny and they come in little groups talking to each other its like watching people interact. Anyways photos forbiden so you'll have to take my word for it the cutest thing ever. ONly down fall so cold, litterally i was wearing 3 shirts,1 scarf, 3 jackets (all with hoods that I wore at the same time) and still was numb and looking fabulous(you could only see my eyes, hehe)!! Tomorrow not sure but they are going to make me a traditional polish dinner cabbage roll of some sort. Never had cooked cabbage so we will see. then wed i leave for the gold coast. I only have a place to stay the first night Im there so pray I find something for the other 3 nights.

Sunday, August 23, 2009


Im in Melborne now which is in the south part of Australia. I am staying with a family who are fabulous. Thier daughter Olivia came to the states last January and well ended up at my house. Small world Im at her's and could not be happier. Her parents are from Polland and well perhaps that will be my next trip. They are so nice. I am however glad I am only here for a few days as the amount of yummy food I have eaten just today I will be 500 pounds in no time. The dad Max is a chef- cakes!! but made a fabulous dinner (not to mention breakfast of odd meats which Chris or any of my carnivorous friends would have loved) chicken and cheese potatoes and amazing vegitables- it is so nice to eat home cooking after 2 weeks of eating out! and also had amazing wine. I know I don't drink but really it was so good! then came dessert Stasi made this amazing almond cake tonight this fabulous coffee cake this morning (slight variation from the one my mom makes if any of you have had hers really good) so I asked for the recipes. SO when I get home I am going to try to convert the measurements of a "little of this" and "well like half of this cup of that" and 200g of butter into a cake that tastes hopefully like the one she made. I want to ask about the chicken too, really the best chicken ever and I have eaten a ton of chicken in my life. Anyways This meal was after a day that we picked up Olivia's god daughter Charlie who is 3 and went on an old steam train through the country side and rainforest then we stopped at a park and watched wild kangaroos eat just before sunset. Oh 3 year olds. So much fun no matter where they live. Cute and amazingly she loved me straight away. Fun day nice to be in a family environment. Tomorrow off to Philip Island hope it doesn't rain. It was cold today and I sent my big coat home with Libby so I hope not to freeze, and I hope my pants are dry, Stazi insisted she wash some of my clothes so I now have a few clean pairs only they don't dry things so hope is was windy enough today to dry them. Great people God has provided amazingly for my needs.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Trip Update

Ok this will be brief as I am being charged by the minute to type so here is my trip so far
Mon-Flight long, but muscle relaxer and a row to myself I amazingly slept most of it no food so starving when I got off!!
Wed- found food (as Mon-wed all one day really) then we took a boat to Davenport hiked around north head and Mt. Victoria beautiful, WW2 history stuff ate John Dorry fish
Thurs. -Boat to different island for worlds best beach- rained tons!!! wine tasting- will have great story later! interesting locals at dinner
Fri-RAIN, RAIN, RAIN, so we went to the west coast and hiked in the rainforest to the top of the falls some more beaches Pihu a surfing legend beach but really wet pictures are hillarious
SAt museum, best chocolate shop ever, ate lamb, saw Dralion!
Sun-boat to dormant volcano, hiked in the RAIN surprise we were wet but views were amazing
Mon- flew to Sydney, walked around botanical gardens, darling harbor (best lunch here at a brewry) worst dinner ever!
Tues- road subway system(funny stories to come)hiked the Blue Mountians, no rain!! beautiful waterfalls and rainforest
Wed-Boat to Manly beach-beautiful and sunny!! then tea at the opera house so much fun!!! girls I wish you were here!! then fancy dinner at this premire res. but I didn't like the food-shocker!
Thurs-zoo-lots o baby animals supper cute, then the bridge climb. Yes all the way to the top! amazing views but cant take camera due to safety will try to get more photos today!
Fri-trying to do laundry but not so successful yet so maybe blow drying my handwashed undies tonight!! not sure what today holds thinking city pictures and maybe a trip to manly beach agian it the most beautiful day today!

I am having fun, pray for safety as from today on I am on my own! I will have tons of stories and pics for you when I see you in 12 days! I am off to Melborne tomorrow pray I can contact the girl I am staying with before I leave!

Monday, August 10, 2009

On my way

i am all packed and will board the plane in a couple of hours. my intention is to keep you all posted as the days go. i make no promises. Thank you all for praying for me i have some amazing friends and while I knew this before the trip your phone calls and texts today are proof. i will miss you all! See you in a couple of weeks!!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

old letters

Today I opened up my Bible that I used in college. I couldn't find my other Bible, but in opening it I found lots of old papers, sermons, and letters from my parents and friends that for whatever reason I kept. I found a letter from Mike dated 1/16/99. Understand that on that date Mike and I were not dating and were just getting back to being friends and still he wrote words of encouragement all based on scripture. During this time I was facing some challenging situations at school and was so confussed as to what God was doing. Sound familiar (my current life is not much different) So Mike wrote "The most important thing I can tell you is to keep your eyes and focus on God....The Lord will answer your prayers (Jer. 33:3) and He wants to know about your problems (Ps. 142:1-2) The Lord still hears all of your prayers and requests (Ps 77:1) the Lord is living with us even when life hurts and things don't seem to make sense. I know I can't feel your pain and can't make things make sense, but I know that God makes all things work together and beautiful in His time. Don't give up on God or yourself things will make sense soon enough." Pretty funny how life cycles. I grew a lot during that last semester of school and well maybe that is why the trials where there. Now agian God is stretching me and yet I still struggle to trust that His plan is best, and turn to Him in prayer rather than just handle things on my own. Funny how Mike still talks to me through old letters and sermon notes. I am so thankful that I had him as a friend who directed me so often to the scripture and not to himself for emotional comfort and support. So now that I don't have him here for comfort and support I can still be directed to God who loves me more than Mike did and who is living with me working all my situations out for good. Mike left a legacy, I hope I live in such a way that my life will count for Christ and people will come to know Him better. Pray for boldness. Its what I had to be in college during that last semester and its how I need to be now. To live Christ to die Gain!

Monday, August 3, 2009

I forgot the dancing

This summer my crazy mom signed up for square dancing and line dancing and asked if I would join her. So i thought line dancing on mondays sounded better than square dancing on sundays. So a dancing queen I have been. Electric slide, elvira, tush push, cowboy hustle, blue rose, cowgirl twist, and so many more. While Im not very good my mom and I keep ourselves entertained either laughing at ourselves or the intensity of the others in the class. There are some who take it way too seriously!! Us Carlson girls just wanna have fun and so we laugh a lot!!

summer thus far

Ok so it has been requested that I update my blog, and since I love the O'Roarks (both generations) here is the summer recap:
June & July I had the opportunity to do my administrative field work (student teaching for principals) at an elementary school in Long Beach (minutes from CS and Leilani, I already miss stopping by on my way to and from work). I loved every part of it except that I was not being paid for my long hours, but it was a fabulous experience and has prompted me to start looking at different schools to work at and possibly venture to the elementary world. Kids are so cute and well not high schoolers. In any case its the first time in years I have been happy going to work.

Astrid and I also were able to take a trip to Santa Maria. So fun! Big trains little trains and great conversation with the O'Roarks. Love weekends there. Must do that again soon! I will post pictures later.

After I finally finished this course work I have had a few beach days which has been really nice. It has provided me with time to read (yes Astrid I finished a book already), and also time to reflect on who I am and where I want to be both physically and spiritually (and I have a long way to grow in both areas).

August has begun with competition. My brother competed on Fri and Sat nights in the inter-crew and taplin doing well in both although not the outcome he is satisfied with, always pushing himself to be the best I can learn a lot from him (and yes Leilani he is crazy) Night surf competitions are exciting and well my John Deere sweatshirt kept me warm and was a popular item the whole weekend. (I had several parties asking where I got it from. Thank you Kevin and Dini) Yesterday I swam pier to pier which is my one ocean water swim that I have done for 14 years now, why? The fun of competition. This year 1100 swimmers, the first year only a few hindered. it is exciting and challenging but the sense of accomplishment when you finish is amazing. It is interesting to me all the thoughts I have while on my super long endurance races this one much shorter than the marathon by about 4 hours. It was difficult this year as I couldn't find Ed until about half way, but I know that even if he can't do it one year I can do it alone, only slower and not in a straight path, I was all over the place ask the lifeguards that were watching. The current was not pushing us rather was against us but even with that my arms felt good, my stomach did not, the choppy surf makes for a crampy stomach and having only taken one Dramamine before entering the water I wished I had taken 2! but at least I didn't feed the fish this year. The finish was the hared part as my calves cramped as I tried to watch the waves and reach the bottom to run. Fun times running out of the water with the thought that your legs aren't going to hold your weight. But all in all a great Sunday morning workout. Next year more training for the marathon and the swim!

Now I am preparing for Australia. Leilani helped me buy some essentials on Saturday. She should be a personal shopper, although I take most of what she says looks good back as I am stuck in my plain jane ways of dressing, but alas one day I will actually have to dress my age and perhaps a pattern or two wouldn't hurt me, however sweats, flips, and tank tops are more my style. So I now have a cute pair of shoes which for once look better on big feet than little ones (sorry Leilani, but I saved you some money with you not buying them) I have purchased my tickets to the opera house and talked with Libby about all the places we want to go. I am excited and cant wait to see more of God's amazing creation. I am excited about my 20 day journey. I will be back at the end of the month (so Leilani you can rest and not worry I'm not planning on moving there or not returning I have my boys to come back to)

SO that is summer in a quick overview of the summer so far!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

God's blessings

God is so amazing. Yesterday would have been my 6th wedding anniversary, and I didn't even remember that until Thursday (progress!!!!) it just shows me how much healing God has done in my heart. God has blessed me with so many amazing people and I am so grateful for each one of them. Some have been in my life for a really long time, some just a few months but all of them were placed there by God for a specific purpose. I am still so unsure of what God is doing in my life but I am completely sure that He knows far better what is best for me. He has blessed me far more than I ever deserve. I am grateful for each day (hard or not). He is my joy! and I am joyful!!! Enjoy today, enjoy life, it is a gift from HIM!!!!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Anyone want to run?

Today I finished my first marathon. and had I trained would not be that impressive, but I am so impressed with the way God made the human body to be able to move in such amazing way for an extended amount of time. So not training I went into it with the idea that I would just run/walk it and finish regardless of the time. But then I ran the first 10 miles at 10 minute pace so I got to thinking well I think I should aim for under 5 hours. I ended up finishing at 5 hours 10 minutes (avg 11 min miles) but Im happy with that and next time I will train and be faster-God willing. It was a ton of fun. While I was running I had great stories I was going to post but tired now I will just say I finished and I am totally going to run another one, anyone want to join me? next year its on June 6th.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Bearing one another's burdens

Saturday mornings I go to Grief Share, which is a grief group. I'm never too excited to go, because it makes you face your grief. You have to share(which I don't like doing) and you have to listen to others (which I do like doing, most of the time). Anyways each week the topic changes and you discuss something different. Today was about the uniqueness of grief. how everyone's grief is different based on who you lost and how you lost them. They have good insights. Today however my encouragement came from the fellowship after the meeting. In talking with them the leader said that he and his wife can see a change in me. I asked what that was b/c I don't feel like I am any further along than before. But he said I look happy and I don't cry everytime I try to speak, and i share more. I am now struggling with different things. The secondary losses and not the shock of grief but now the lonliness of grief. You wouldn't think that meeting with a bunch of people who are all depressed would make you smile, but i leave there each week with a smile even though that is sometimes accompanied with tears. I think this is why we are to bear each others burdens. I know that I am not the only one who is going to an emtpy house after the meeting, I am not the only one who cries at night, I am not the only one who is an emotional rollercoaster much of the time, I am not the only one who can t make decisions, has regrets, has anxiety, has questions, but I am also not the only one who thinks God understands, gives grace, comfort, healing, and that this was part of a plan. I am the youngest person there by a good 20 years, yet God is using me to help them, and using them to help me. The losses are different, but God is the same, and He knows the plan He knew the number of days of every life taken, and of those still here. He has a plan and while I try to figure that out and work through my grief issues and my sin, He is still working in me, why I don't know, but He is and He is in all of their lives too. So long story to get to my point, God puts people in our lives for minutes, days, or years for a reason, perhaps to encourage or teach or to help bear their burdens. Today was just a reminder how doing that helps not only the person you are helping but you as well. This is not a pretty job and tears will be shed, but it is part of why we are here and it is a way to share God's grace to those around us.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

perhaps there is a purpose.

Last week a teacher I mentor lost his significant other to cancer. We have had a few conversations about her and her progress or lack there of over the last 2 years. About 3 weeks ago I asked how she was and she wasn't good, he asked me to pray for her, and I agreed. When I heard she had past I wondered what am I going to say to him, nothing people say at this time helps and I sure didn't want to be the one to say something flipant and stupid just to say something. Usually I see him once a week or every couple of weeks, this week I have seen him and talked with him every day. Today we talked about Christ and spiritual warfare. Just pray that he continues to talk with me and that what I share with him brings clarity. He believes in Christ and the afterlife, just not sure in what capacity at this point. So did the accident have purpose, yes if only to relate to this person who sits in the same place I was not so long ago, tired, worried, and wondering why. Pray I would have great quiet times to share with him, for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth flows. I need to work on filling my heart with scripture so that God's word is what flows out of my mouth, then I won't have flipant stupid answers rather healing comforting words.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

decision making is not my forte

In an effort to stop Sampson from crying/howling/just being sad I adopted two puppies from the animal shelter, thinking that if he had friends he would stop. However my logic was not correct. I got the dogs on Thursday, it is now Sunday and Sam just barks at them. He seems fine with them he just doesn't seem to interact with them. Which is not what I expected. They however are puppies and are into everything which I guess I didn't really think about until I was trying to do homework this weekend and the fact that Sam is barking all day drove me nuts, but I couldn't keep them in the house b/c I can't watch them (they chewed my computer battery charger wire this morning while I was typing grrrrrr!) So I need prayer. One that the dogs will get along and Sam will get used to them and like them. and 2 that I don't loose my mind trying to train them! Oh and I'm so scared of making another wrong decision that I can't pick names! I miss Mike-he was so much better at all this stuff or at least I could ask him and he would veto my crazy ideas!!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

April 7, 2007

Saturday I woke up abruptly at 4am. I couldn't go back to sleep. I told my brother when he came in because it felt so strange. He said really 4am with an odd questioning voice I said yea why? That is when Mikes surgery ended. Because I wanted to donate Mikes organs they kept him on life support until they performed the surgery I had assumed that as soon as you said don't resuscitate that is the end the plug is pulled and well the end. But I guess not so although I always thought absent from the body present with the Lord is true, I totally think that on the way Mike stoped and said goodbye. It sounds weird and I didn't even believe my own thoughts for a long time, but the timing and the feeling are too crazy. Anyways I wanted to let you know that because of that surgery a man in Kentucky has his left kidney and no longer needs dialysis. God uses us to bless people even after we are gone. amazing. I'm grateful that some good came out of it.

Copper update

It was pointed out to me that in the emotional chaos that I have been I failed to post that I had to put Copper to sleep on March 24. After the weekend when he wasn't eating and getting sick, I called the vet monday morning and he said that it probably was time. Copper still wanted to walk but could hardly support his own weight. He normally would jump into the car, but I had to lift him up, which was sad b/c he always sat in front with me but couldn't because I couldn't lift him that high so he had to ride in the back. I took him for a short walk before going into the drs office. The office manager who knows me well at this point came over to say goodbye and the tears began. I will spare you the details but I was with Copper the whole process to try and keep him calm and well if I was about to die I would want someone to stay with me. So I said my good bye and left him there at the vet. Depending on your theology he is with Mike or he's now part of nature. I hope Mike was wrong in his theology and I hope Randy Alcorn is right. Because i would love to see Copper agian b/c he was such a great friend and helped me through some of my darkest days. I miss him a ton, but I think Sampson misses him more. He cries and whines a lot!! so today I started the puppy hunt. Not an easy process I almost brought home 4 dogs tonight just to save them. but didn't. I will try to keep you up dated. If anyone has any big breed puppies let me know!!

Monday, April 6, 2009

April 6, 2007 vs April 6, 2009

April 6, 2007- after going to my room and getting some much needed pain relief I remember very little. I remember waking up and taking out my contacts that I had worn since Wed but I failed to think that decision all the way through. I had no glasses to put on which meant that all these people who came that morning, well I had no clue who many of them were. Which makes me laugh now. The flood of visitors was open and I have no idea how all of them knew, but they all came from churches all around the south bay and further out. It was overwhelming. I appreciated all the prayers and well wishes, but am sorry that frankly I don't remember most of who was there. That was Friday.

April 6, 2009- today is a completely different day. I got up put on some sunscreen (oil of olay-don't buy it it doesn't work) and went to have breakfast with Whit, and Ed and family. Uncle Bills is always good. I was going to leave to spend time alone but decided spending time with family should be a priority. I am glad I did. Those kids make me smile. I still had my alone time and again God provided a great day with warm sun and sand. I was able to read a book about trusting God. God is not only the creator but He sustains it as well. He is in total control of every detail in our lives. And while these statements are not new to most of you reading this, in the midst of grief they are not too clear. God has a plan and no one can thwart it, not even a car accident. He has a plan and the "big" and the "tiny" events all fit in it. God cares so much about me that He sent His son to die and take all the wrath that I deserve upon him so that I would have eternal life. How can I complain or question His plan when it doesn't fit into my ideal. What He has is so much better and the best part is although I don't know the plan, I do know how it ends, I get to see Him in glory and praise Him for all eternity. So the path to the end maybe full of unknowns and valleys and even some great mountain peaks, but along the way I need to remember that God is to be praised in it all and that everything is under His control and it will work out for my good, I just need to trust.

Tonight just as two years ago I was surrounded by friends and family. Only this time I remember all of them. They are the people who have been the most encouraging and loving to me. They are always there when I need someone to talk to, always there to speak truth into me, and to love me. I am so grateful for them, I'm glad they are a part of God's plan in my life. And although there is still sadness there is also joy. Mike is in Heaven and some day we will get to sing with him again.

So tonight I am celebrating life. The fact that God blessed me with a man who lived life to glorify God and shared that Passion with everyone, and now I have a 2nd chance to live like he did and live to glorify God until He takes me home. Oh what a day that will be, when we've arrived. I can't wait, but I know that while I'm still here I have a job to do and to do it to the glory of God so that men might see the Father through me. I pray that I step out and do this and do it with JOY! for in Christ there is so much JOY even in grief!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

April 5, 2007

April 5th there was no separation between Wed and Thursday. I was sent to have x-rays at 3am. I was flown to USC hospital and on the 3rd floor is the county jail ward along with the x-ray room. I was left in a hallway a chart on my chest laying there with other gernies some who had handcuffs attaching them. I thought no one even knows I'm here this is horrible I couldn't move and time moved so slow. When i finally was wheeled into xray it was the most painful thing I have ever felt. Trying to move my body into a position so they would have the right angle and hold it. I went back down stairs and don't really remember anything until about 2-3pm. Then my mom and the doctor came in together. This never happened so I asked what was wrong. They told me Mike had been hurt really bad and needed surgery and they wanted to know if I would ok that and then Ok his brother to make the decisions on my behalf since he was at the hospital. I talked to the social worker and then I laid there. I don't remember feeling anything. They came and moved me to a room which I thought would be by myself nope a room with about 10 of us all in a circle you can see everything. I watched with my mom and brother and saw mistakes being made. USC is a teaching hospital so the Dr would come in to see someone and a group of 6 or more would follow. There was a guy on a respirator and the lady went from him to the next bed without washing her hands, so Micah promptly made me little post it notes with kind reminders to wash hands, all my allergies, so there would be no questions if i fell asleep. So there I lay covered in post it notes waiting. Then Micah came in and looked terrible he just said Mike had a stroke during the surgery and it didn't look good. Tears flowed down my face. Micah left to do something and when one of the nurses saw me she asked what was wrong I told her My husband is dying and they won't let me go. She then started working with Micah to get me out of there. The charge nurse refused to let me go stating that every doctor I had seen since my arrival would have to approve the leave I had seen like 6 different ones. I just cried. She came in at 8 to give me pain meds and I refused them, I said if I take them I will fall asleep and wont be able to see him, she wasn't happy but didn't force them. then the doctor came in around 9:30 pm and told me he would release me to go for a walk. He provided a wheelchair-it looked like it was from the early 20s high back wood thing, but he said they had to hold my bed for 2 hours. Micah somehow lifted me into that thing again the pain was unbearable. every bump and crack I felt I got into the car and we drove slowly to Hunington Memorial. There a nurse with a gernie was waiting for me lifted me out of the car and wheeled me in to see Mike. He looked normal. He had a cut on his shoulder and yes his legs were wrapped, but his face was not damaged. His wrist was wrapped becuase he had broken it in mexico the summer prior and never had it fixed, then rebroke it the week before when he fell skateboarding to work. His hand had cuts on them, but I held on the best I could laying off the side of the bed next to his. He had a ton of tubes hooked up, but looked at peace. I talked to him for a while until the machine freaked me out with a loud ringing. I told Mike before I left that he needed to fight to stay here, but if God was calling him then he needed to listen and go. The doctor came in and wanted to take him to run more tests but while he went for the tests he had all the family gather in an empty room at the end of the hall. He then gave the grim reality of Mikes test results that there was no brain activity and I needed to decide what I wanted to do if he went into cardiac arrest which would happen. Should they revive him or not and did I want the life support to continue. After short conversation and a loud cry- the decision was made. It was 12:06 on APril 6th when I told the doctor to let mike go. I went into see him again I don't remember saying anything except goodbye and that I loved him over and over. I was so worried about getting back to the other hospital I was in so much pain. The doctor assured me that it was alright i was not thinking too clearly and remember laying in the hallway outside his door watching his family say goodbye. It was like a movie. They then took me upstairs to a room where I would spend the next week. gave me meds and well I continue tomorrow.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

April 4th, 2007

April 4, 2007 It was Wed morning I woke up early-as usual- and cleaned up the room and packed all our stuff up. Mike got up a little later but we were ready to go between 8 and 9, we checked out and headed for the state line. On the way I made calls to the city inspector to have our roof checked out as we had finished that just before we left and they needed to inspect it so I set that up for the following week. We talked to his dad who was headed out for a camping excursion, then I pointed out some great skydivers that were falling from the sky. Mike, Joel, and myself were going to go skydiving for our 30th birthdays, mike scared of hieghts was not thrilled but wouldn't let ego be hurt so agreed to go. He promptly changed the subject. We stopped at the McDonalds at the old casinos near state line, had a quick bite and then got back on the road. I figured I would drive because we usually would trade off and I would drive the longer portion as I didn't get as tired or board as Mike did. He insisted on driving. We had neglected to buy water so we had pepsi and we drank those as we drove. Around 12 or so We debated about stopping for lunch but couldn't decide where and said if we saw something we would stop. We came to the part of the freeway where you have to choose to stay on the 10 or go on the 210. Although the 210 didn't look right to me, Mike had printed directions off of some website, and since I hadn't been to Vegas in awhile we figured we would just follow them. It seemed like the next freeway was just a short while down the road so I was reading the directions and looking for the sign then a white car changed lanes into our lane and all I remember was the feeling of spining. I woke up looking at the inside of the ambulance. It is all silver. I know they were talking to me but the only thing I remember them saying was that I was going to go for a ride in a helocopter. Then everytime I opened my eyes there was this man with a red helmet on looking at me. I would go out open my eyes and see him agian and agian. Then I heard them asking for my rings could they take them, and they were going to take my bellybutton ring out (yes I had one...that is a different story) I guess I kept trying to sit up because they kept telling me to relax and lay back. I could move if I wanted to. The next thing I remember was seeing a clock across the room it was 3:00 a nurse came over and said that I was in an accident was there a number to call someone to let them know. I gave them my parents number. Then I was out again. when i woke up again my mom was there and I will save the details but I was allergic to the meds, got sick but was still strapped to the spinal board with a c-collar firmly in place, not a good thing. Different doctors came and said that I broke my pelvis or hip and might have to go for surgery. I kept asking for water and they wouldn't give it to me. I was so dehydrated from the Pepsi and no water earlier. Anyways late that night my brother in law was there and had what looked like tears in his eyes I had never seen him look so concerned. Connie came in and told me Ed and Kendon were on their way and I asked why. She said they just wanted to be there. I asked her about Mike and she said he had broken legs. I figured he was fine I was the one who was airlifted. A few others I think came by the hospital but you could only have one visitor every hour and I was not all there to say the least. This was a very long day that would only get longer.

Friday, April 3, 2009

April 3, 2007

April 3 2007 was a Tuesday- we had to get up to go listen to a presentation on Hilton Vacation ownership. Mike cracked me up the entire time. He would talk to these guys and ask them weird questions. You have to go through a few rounds of people saying no until a supervisor comes and offers you the world with the offer and Mike calmly repeated his No speech to them. It was a great sounding deal for later in life when our finances might have been better, so he took the ladies card. We left there and headed off the strip to have lunch at BJs. We didn't venture out of our comfort zone we ate at the same restaurants there as we would eat at home. Anyways this is about and hour away so we had time to talk, (and Mike took a few random pictures for Chris on his phone one of the price of the corn gasoline, and the huge guitar at hard rock)(mike had promised Chris that he wouldn't talk about the gap and just enjoy the vacation, oops). The topic, is what we were doing at Carson Bible worth it. Yes! we talked about each member of GAP (the college ministry) about their growth and what we needed to change and focus on. We looked at conversations we had had with other members of the church and were encouraged by the changes that we were seeing, some small others large. We talked about some goals and directions we were wanted to see happen. We talked through lunch and then had a few more hours of Mike napping Amy walking to relax. Then we decided to cash in our voucher from the morning and had to travel to the Hilton casino while there Mike got a call about a big missionary issue we were dealing with, so he talked and I waited. Ministry doesn't go on vacation as much as you may want to. He apologized which I wasn't mad, but he had made such a big deal the day before about it being our time together and not giving that time to others he felt bad. Things happen! Anyways, we went to dinner at Outback. Now everyone who knows me knows I am not the biggest fan of the place, but we had gone to Vegas 2years or so prior for his cousins wedding and I had impressed the waitress that day with just how much I could eat, so Mike wanted to repeat that grand occasion. We ate then went back to relax. It was a great day full of conversation and laughter and lounging -that's all we did all day. It was great.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

April 2, 2007

Grief is an odd thing. It causes your body to be aware of things you never were and be totally oblivious to things that you at one point were so keenly aware of. Last night I couldn't sleep, literally up most of the night yet at 5:15am was wide awake. I thought about it today what in the world was keeping me up, my illness, my thoughts, stress, but I ruled out all of these b/c I had no worse conditions than the night before when I slept, for me, pretty well. Tonight I figured it out. It is April 2nd. I don't need a calendar to be able to tell you that. My heart just knows.

Some who read this blog have never heard the full story of what happened two years ago, I was told by some that telling the story is good and writing it down is good as well. Up until now I never wanted to write everything down but I am at a point where it is still like it was yesterday in my mind but I know it will fade. So here are my memories of that day.

4/2/07 This was the day Mike and I woke up at 4:30am to leave by 5am to beat traffic to Vegas. It was a trip that was planned from the October prior based on a random phone call that offered a deal too good to pass up. My spring break was the only time Mike and I could both go away and not miss work(we'd leave on mon. return on wed Mike would preach Thurs. and Friday for two new Holy week services a great plan in our eyes). It was a Monday morning and we had had a late night with the Gap kids the night before at IN and OUT. Mike had eaten some peppers due to some crazy kids always daring him to do things and so was not feeling very well, so drove. We tiredly packed the car, I was searching for my camera couldn't find it Mike wanted to go b/c we had to stop at the church to get some books and he couldn't find his sunglasses so he thought he left them there, he did but didn't find them that morning. We drove to about the half way mark and grabbed a quick bite traded positions in the car and then arrived in Vegas around 10ish. My friend Dawn was also on spring break but was headed to LA so I called her and she wanted to meet up and show me her house. First Mike wanted to go to the room and settle in, I wanted just to drive to see Dawn knowing that once Mike was in the room he wouldn't want to go. But we checked in and he didn't want to go. It was the Cubs home opener and well we all know what a fan Mike was. So I went solo to see Dawn. A pretty short visit around 2 hours, but I returned to an unhappy Mike. He wanted to watch the game with me and didn't understand why I wanted to see Dawn more than spend time with him, which wasn't the case but I won't go there now. SO we, well I spent the day appologizing for not realizing how much he wanted me to watch that game so I took him to all the places on the strip I thought he would like, ESPN zone, hard rock, m&m store (ok that was for me to find stuff for Dawn's wedding shower) and well we ended up at WIENERSNITZLE or however you spell that hot dog place had lunch and an odd conversation. He wanted to know what Dawn and I had talked about which was her house primarily, but I said she had made an odd statement that she didn't know what the mortgage payment was that Matt handled it, and I thought that was so strange, b/c I wanted to know everything about our mortgage that we had just taken on. This led to talking about pastor Gablers wife who after he died Mike had to help her with her bills and writing checks. He then went into great detail asking me did I know the password to the online banking and explaining that everything was set up there so if anything happened I would not be in the same state. (pertinate conversation looking back) Anyways we spent the rest of the day relaxing and napping, well he napped I walked around. That night was the NCAA Final Four final game so I thought he would want to go out, but we decided that it would be to crazy for us so we bought pepsi and a frozen pizza cooked it in our amazing room (the nicest room I have ever stayed in) and watched the game there. It ended being a really great night just hanging out watching the game and of course all the ESPN highlights and commentary after. But a good day with a rough start.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

What I've learned in the last 2 years

As the two year anniversary of the accident approaches I wanted to take time to reflect not on what I've lost, but what I have learned because of the loss.
I've learned:
1. to walk again- I tend to forget that when I get frustrated with my lack of motivation and slow running times, that it has not been that long since I had to use a walker and needed help just to sit up.
2.I have some amazing friends-you have been so supportive and tolerant of my moodiness and have been willing to make major sacrifices of your time to spend it with me
3. What an impact a person's life when centered on Christ can make- testimony of what people have learned and still remember from Mike is overwhelming it should be motivation to live the way that he did-for Christ
4. That God is sovereign over the big things and little things in my life- trusting Him is hard, but when I do things go a lot better
5. I have the opportunity to do things better- Most days I wish that God would have taken me too, but since that was not His plan I have the opportunity to be a better friend, sister, aunt, teacher, perhaps a wife (I'm still not sure that will happen again, but if it does I know more than I ever did and would change a lot, but Mike is a tough act to follow) I can only pray that I take the opportunity and time to invest in the relationships God has given me.
6. God's grace is an amazing power force that supplies peace, strength, comfort, and reason to get up each day despite how I feel. Without it I would not be able to function.
7. To find joy in Christ. Mike would always ask me when I was upset or moodymoods as he called it where is your joy, the expected response was "in Christ" but in the last 24 months there has been joy but only if I look to Christ and not the circumstance He has blessed me in so many ways that I have to thank Him daily for all He provides and the places He guides, even though I may not want to go willingly.
8. I am an emotional roller coaster, but that is alright. I never would have thought that you could be totally happy and completely sad in the same moment, but the O'Roark wedding is proof that this is possible. You can be excited and devastated in the same moment and I can be completely lonely in a crowded room or feel content while alone. It doesn't make sense and I have no words to describe it but despite popular belief Amy is an emotional person even if i don't like to show it.
9. God has an amazing love for me. Yes Jesus loves me is a song we all know, but I don't think until you are in the darkest pit of despair do you realize that He really loves you. Oh the deep deep love of Jesus vast unmeasured rolling as the mighty ocean in its fullness over me.....all I need and trust is the deep deep love of Jesus.....he's interceding before the throne...far surpassing all the rest its an ocean full of blessing in the midst of every test...you will bring us home to glory where your love will never end.
10. Psalms and hymns are comforting and full of doctrine that when I refuse to open the Bible because it hurts, minister to me and push me to open up God's word, because that truly is the only place that will bring me healing. And although I still have a long way to go in the healing process, God is working and as much as I want to be done with the grieving process God is using it to teach and grow me into a better person than I ever was before the accident, so for that I thank Him for it.

God is good no matter how I feel. He is faithful when I am not. He loves me and that should be enough. I pray that you will experience God's love daily and not wait for catastrophe to happen before you realize the depth of that love. He gives and takes away Blessed be His name!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Copper update

Copper has not eaten since early Friday morning. He got sick friday afternoon and the sickness continued through Saturday afternoon. I talked to the vet on Saturday and he gave me meds to help calm his stomach. But he still wont eat. He just hides and well looks so pathetic. I have to call the vet Monday morning and he said he can give me pills that will make him want to eat so we will see. He is very weak and it breaks my heart to look at him. He still wants to walk but can hardly stand for any length of time. Pray for courage to make the final decision and comfort to survive that step. Thanks for all your support and prayers. God's creation is amazing and I have been so blessed by Copper.

Friday, March 20, 2009

what not to say to a widow.

over the last 24 months I have gotten a lot of advice and what others have done what others think they might do and well random things. Most of which has either been helpful or I just let it go in one ear and out the other, ask any of my close friends I don't remember much of anything from the first year. but one comment has/is bugging me. "you're young you'll marry agian" and always in a tone that is positive as if this makes everything alright. What in the world are they thinking. Does my age mean I loved Mike less and would forget him faster than if I were 60 or 70? or do older people suddenly loose the ability to love after 50 so marriage isn't possible? I don't get it and I wish people would stop using my age and remariage in the same sentence and I wish people could remember that I knew Mike for 20 years. It shouldn't bother me but it does. Maybe I will marry again but maybe I won't and either way Im not ready to make that choice now it has only been 2 years which is not a lot of time. Plus Im still wrestling with scripture in this area. I realize in 1 Timothy it says that if widows are younger than 60 they should remarry. but Paul also states in 1 Corinthians 7:8 to the unmarried and the widows I say that it is good for them to remain single as I am. I think both of these state that if you have self control and are able to be single than its fine and if not don't sin get married. So for now I am fine being single and would be a disaster to date. (poor guy if this does ever happen) So this is my vent for the evening. I make no promise to marry or to remain single. I want to be content. stop giving dating and marrying advice.... God will do what He wants in my life and in the lives of the singles and married around me. It will be in His time and it is not dependent on age. So please don't use my age as a bandage for Mike's death. It would have hurt just as much if it had happened when I was 65 or if it happened when we were 26. sorry Iknow none of you who read this are the problem advice givers but this is whats on my mind. Happy Friday!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

thank you Baldwins

A great friend gave me this cd about a year ago I guess, I listened to it continuously for about a month, and just this week put it in agian. I have been in a wierd fog lately stressed out with work and life in general and torn between feeling relieved the day is over and I am one day closer to spring break, a break from the kids, and dreading that I am one day closer to spring break b/c it will be 2 years and my heart knows it without a calender. But there is this song that captured my prayer this morning.

When darkness falls
Temptations call
And all around me seems undone
You hear my pleas
Supply my needs
And tell me of Your wondrous love

You are the joy in my morning
You’re my song of praise
Just like the new day dawning
Flooding my world with grace

Though trials come
And every one
Can take me further from Your truth
You calm my fears
Dry all my tears
And draw me closer, Lord, to You

In You there’s no shadow of turning
Constant in all Your ways
You’re growing my faith and I’m learning to lean
On You all of my days
© 2008 Sovereign Grace Worship (ASCAP)

I just pray that I live this way. That He is my JOY in mourning, there can be joy in spite of the mourning. that I trust Him to calm my fears and know that he is holding all my tears (He has big hands!) but that He is drawing me unto Himself and growing my faith, which at times is smaller than that famous mustard seed. I pray that I would lean on Him more and not try to do everything on my own, but that is an area we are working on.... alot. His grace continues to flow to me in abundance (another great song on the cd talks about that perhaps tomorow I'll post that one) and I know that one day this will all be for my good in His plan.

Monday, March 16, 2009

a note from Copper

Ok I am sorry I have not bloged (if that is a real word) in a while. But if I had it would have been depressing for all who read this(the last few weeks have not been the greatest). But since my very cheery friend Leilani said I didn't blog the good news about Copper I figured I should ask him to blog for you.

Thank you for your prayers. I had to stay at the vet overnight which was scary and I really missed my mom and brother. In the morning they put me to sleep and put a drain in. I couldn't see it and as hard as I try I couldn't lick it, my mom was glad about that. I had to stay inside 5 whole days and be seperated from my brother who barked at my drain and who was upset that he could not play with me. After day 3 I went back to the vet-he's nice but I don't like that place, and he took the drain out. The swelling on my neck has gone down, but my mom can still feel it a little and my lymphnodes are inflamed on both sides, but the size of golf balls not softballs. I am still on meds which I don't like to eat so mom has to find people food to wrap them in which I enjoy but in her fridge its hard to come by. PopPop helped out a lot letting me out to use the grass while mom was working. Pray for her because wherever she goes to work she comes back looking stressed out. But tonight she took us boys for a walk and we did great except Sam he tried to use the grass and mom didn't have a bag so mom made a run for the house in hopes he wouldn't do it. It was funny to watch. I will talk to my mom about letting me blog more, I really have a lot to say!!! Thanks for praying I am feeling much better, but still have cancer so pray that I fight it and that my mom will be alright when God takes me out of this world. I know that I have been a support to her and I love her alot and I know she is going to miss me. But I also know that she/we have great friends who will be a great support when bad things happen just like 2 years ago. I know the time is near b/c mom is way emotional and I have had many tears to lick up the last few weeks as she dreds the date, but I know you are praying and hopefully I will be well to be here to lick her and make her smile that day too!
Thanks agian.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Copper update..not for the faint hearted

Last night was a really long night. Copper had difficulty breathing, gasping for air, he was not able to close his mouth, his heart was racing, he kept choaking and at around 3am I thought I would have to take him to emergency. His throat continued to leave marks around the house but at around 3:30 am he went outside and came back in and laid down. I fell asleep for a few hours and Thankfully this morning he was doing better but I still made the apt. at the vet. He was so normal today full of energy so I was not excited to take him to the vet but trusted that if he the vet said he needed to be put down I would be alright with that, and if not he could tell me how to help Copper should he repeat last nights symptoms. So I took him for one last car ride, one last walk at the beach, one last walk around the vet.... this led to him and I sitting in the vet's office and his neck leaking all over the place not just dripping but really gross puddles forming around him and I, which I figured was confirmation that he needed to be put down, however the vet looked at him and it turns out that the lump is an abses on top of the lympnode which could be related to the cancer. It needed to be drained although he squeezed it and it drained all over the floor it needs deeper drainage so he put in a shunt to allow it to drain. Copper had to stay at the vet but will (if God wills) come home tomorrow. He will be on 2 types of antibiotics and hopefully that will take care of the ooosing lump. I will have to take him back to the vet on Friday to remove the drain and we will go from there. So agian I thank you for your prayers. I will keep you posted.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Copper update, probably the last.

Tonight when I came home from class coppers neck was bloody. It seems his collar has rubbed his growing mass even though it was on the largest possible hole. So Micah had taken it off. His mouth is being effected and hanging down. He looks at me with the same loving understanding eyes and is more awake than he has been recently but he looks so uncomfortable, yet he doesn't cry or whine just lays near and wags his tail. So tomorrow morning I will call the vet to see if/when he can see copper to possibly make him more comfortable. I am praying I leave the vet with copper tomorrow, however reality may not be this. Im not sure what this will be like or what I am going to do without him. So pray as I go and face the unknown. Although this should be the prayer everyday b/c really that is reality it is all unknown and all my thoughts and dreams I hold for me life need to be prefaced with "if God wills" and oh how different God's will and my will seem to be these last two years. But I am trusting or at least trying to that His will holds things that are better than I can imagine. At the moment that is hard to believe. Pray for me.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

copper update

The sac that was hanging from copper's throat is not there, however he now has two large growths one near his ear and the other on the opposite side of the original lump, this basically means he has lumps surrounding his entire facial area. He seems to still be himself but i fear that time is not his friend or mine. Agian pray that when the time comes I will be alright, and have the strength to take him to the vet. Also pray that I am able to enjoy him for the time he has left, which means I need to get better so I actually can take him on a walk. Thanks for your prayers.

Monday, February 16, 2009

prayer request

Ok today I have slept more than the last week combined and I still don't feel all that great. However Copper is who I am concerned about. The lump on his throat is huge and is multiplying it seems on a daily basis. It now hangs down. So just pray that I will know when to him to the vet and that I will be alright going there. He seems to act pretty normal just lying around a bit more, but not whining or breathing funny. So just pray that God will give me the grace needed to deal with another death. Pray for my health too, I seem to get sick every couple of weeks, so pray that this bug goes away and stays away. I have to go to work tomorrow and well today I was up a total of 5 hours so... pray for energy to handle all my ADHD kids.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Calling all Scrapbookers

Ok today I went with my sister Connie to an all day scrapping event. I am happy to say that I completed a book I started 6 years ago! plus the Princess book for all those interested. Anyways I am going to be hosting a scrapping event of my own Saturday Feb. 21 around 2pm. Let me know if you are interested in coming. It should be fun!! I know you all take a million pics, let me help you organize them and make them cute!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

amazing friends

God has truly blessed me with amazing friends. In the last two days I have recieved gerber daisies delivered with a smile and tonight a gerber daisy card delivered with a hug. Thank you for concern and prayers! I love you guys!!

Monday, January 26, 2009

my crazy life

I have not posted anything in awhile due to the crazyness of my life. So I will go back a couple weekends. My sister texted me Tuesday Jan. 13 asking if I would go skiing with them on thurs the 15th, with wedding details to help with for a fabulous wedding on the 24th i said no at first but was later persuaded to go. So I spent Wed the 14 running around trying to get all the supplies for the wedding projects. I spent a fair amount of time sitting on the floor of Joanne's craft store counting paper and trying to figure last creative ways to pull off Leilanis ideas and make them a reality. So droping the supplies for her programs off I got home around 11 and packed. worked thursday then drove up to mammoth with a 3 month old, a 3year old, my sister and her husband. I give parents credit. making bottles in a moving car and changing diapers and keeping a 3 yr old entertained is a task. I had so much fun. I took a ski lesson on Fri. I didn't fall once and thought I was doing pretty darn good and perhaps you would see me in the next winter olympics in the downhill, however Saturday I went with Shelly and his brother and fam to a much different hill. the first run I was flying so I made myself fall, Shelly gave me some great advice and the next few runs were great. Then the final run, I managed to get a concusion and whiplash but looked Hollywood worthy in my graceless fall down the mountian. But I would do it agian in a heart beat!!Sunday I felt horrible so I was not going to ski, and spent time building snowmen, snowpigs, and other wildlife withAVA so much fun... but my brother convinced me to face the mountian agian so I did for the last hour of the day and didn't hurt myself thankfully. I watched Ava in her ski school on Monday morning the cutest thing then we slowly left the mountian when I post pictures I give more detail as to the fun of traveling with small kids!! so I got home late Monday the 19 with all the wedding projects left to do. Tues. I bought the wood for the frames and had help cutting them from an pretty tallented brother in law after ballet practice. Thankyou Ed. I got home and stained all the frames and began the process of covering the foam and figuring out how I was going to put it all together. In a panic on Wed. I called in emergency backup...Ms Baldwin and later Mr. Gardiner b/c I don't have a nail gun. But all the projects came together wonderfully and we drove to Santa Maria on Thurs. night. The wedding weekend was fun and full of laughter and I was so glad that I had the chance to meet some of Leilani's family and Chris' too. They all are great people. The big day was beautiful and for the most part was free of any major disaters. and most importantly Mike's best friend and the laughing lady who saved me the first summer after the accident are married! I was then blessed to spend what could of been a very lonely night with the Baldwins at the movies. What a sight. Elisabeth and I still had wedding hair and what was left of our makeup on wearing jeans sitting in the crowd of what seemed like pretty normal people. I could not help in my sleep deprived state to crack up! You had to be there. Sunday I got up loaded the gifts, found the cake and began my long drive back to my empty house. I stopped at Chris' parents house for a quick visit and a yummy bowl of coco krispies!!! and then into ventura I went. I was n't going to stop but decided that the day would be far to long to spend by myself so I met my brother and hung out with his family. I finally after a detor in ventura made it home around 8 unloaded the gifts at Ruthies and finally made into my house around 9. totally exhausted and emotionally drained I cried for a good long while and with the help of Astrid's prayers fell asleep around midnight.

The last two weekends have been full of emotion and little sleep and therefor I tend to be on the teary side. I struggle to be content in the role of aunt and not mother of my own, the role of the single friend with only vivid memories of how great marriage is but the reality that it is not forever promised to us. But with all my mixed emotions of gladly serving in both roles God shows His grace. I was never so close to Joy as after the accident, and never so close to Chris or Leilani until that summer. God brings blessings out of the darkness- I love that Shelly considers me part of his family, and I am so blessed to have amazing friends like the O'Roarks! God is faithful and He will provide for me and comfort me and He will heal me eventually. Thanks for all of your prayers over the last couple of weeks, they have been challenging, but I am continuing to be stretched and hopefully I am growing to be more like Christ.

Friday, January 9, 2009

music is a gift from God

As I was cleaning and organizing like a mad woman today, I put in this cd I have only listened to a couple of times a long time ago-valley of vision by Sovreign Grace- and this song came on and I had to stop and replay it b/c the words were what I needed. All of the verses are great, but I am not going to type them here..but they each end with this line

"Jesus you stripped me of everything I depend on so that I would depend on You" then the chorus "In you alone my strength is found, in You alone my hope abounds, In You alone my strength is found, my life is bound up in You"

What a great reminder that it is God who gives and takes away and we don't understand but he provides grace enough for every trial and maybe just maybe He knows what He is doing in removing the crutch that He provided me to teach me to rely on Him for everything. Mike was my teacher, my comforter, my accountablity, my first love- but God is all that and I should love Him so much more than I do Mike. He is able to fulfill all the roles Mike did and more in a perfect way that Mike couldn't. So....just a reminder that all this world offers in great friends, lovers, pets, and great stuff is all fleating, but God's love and grace are eternal- and eternity is constant! So enjoy all that God has given you as a gift from Him but know that in the end it is only Him that really matters and what is done for Him that will last-bind your life up in HIM.

Micah had warned me earlier in the day that I needed to watch my stress level as he had pulled a huge chunk of hair out of the drain-yes my hair is falling out agian and no I am not sleeping. is this b/c I am depending on Christ or me? Pray that I would keep my focus on Him and not be wonder woman and try to do it on my own.

PS - if you have this cd listen to it. Every song is amazing! #1 just played while typing-really good!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

John Deere!

Yesterday I got the most amazing gift. A John Deere blanket. It is warm and comfy! I love it!! Thank you O'Roarks- they are amazing people!! Leilani is going to get the best inlaws ever!! Oh yea in case you don't know they live in the best part of California, where beach meets farm- my two fave places together! I just might move there soon!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year!

Well another year is complete like it or not. But this morning I woke up and was alright. Last night I pick a group up from a drama filled party to drop them safely home and the one guy thanked me and said "you're a saint". This morning I said to myself I really am a saint! God choose me and so I am b/c of Him and not because of any thing I do. What an amazing thought to start the new year. I read the last of Philippians 4 and it is so applicaple. I know everyone who knows me has read this but it is how Paul learned to be content. This is my new years resolution. To be content. also he thanks his supporters for them sharing in his time of need and I would like to do that too. Thank you to all of you who pray for me and call me/text/email and encourage me in so many ways it means so much! There also is a reminder that God will supply all our needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus-so regardless of the economic times God will supply from His riches which is awesome. So Happy New Year! I am excited to see how God blesses and grows each one of you & me this year-let me know! I know the year will be filled with trials and blessings but we can LEARN to be CONTENT in every situation b/c we have Christ. May that encourage you and me!!