Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Saturday, November 26, 2016

She Was The Ride Along

Deep Breath. Exhale.

Thanksgiving is over and now we can think about Christmas.

Our church puts on a free dinner for the community every year and so that's where we spend Thanksgiving. 

We serve over 1000 people and it takes more than 500 volunteers to get it all done!

I was in charge of the Busers and Servers this year, a job I've never done before so things have been a little stressful for me the last few months.

It was my job to place all 46 tables in a way that allowed space for the busers and servers to move around; for the large food carts to get through and for everyone to leave in an emergency if needed.

Thankfully another group of volunteers actually set the tables!

A few of the busers and servers getting ready.

 Servers, busers and table hosts ready and waiting for the guests to enter.

 The doors opened and the guests poured in!
(We did this 3 different times - 11:00, 1:30 and 3:30. As soon as the guests from one seating left, we reset the tables and did it again!)


We also provide transportation for those who need it and that's where Chuck and Beth volunteered. Chuck drove the shuttle bus and Beth was his 'ride along'. He told me that they picked up an older couple who was blind and Beth gently led the woman off the bus and into the church! (No pictures though.)

This was our 22nd year and it is always an honor to serve so many people!

We hope you all had a blessed Thanksgiving too!

Thursday, November 17, 2016


We went shoe shopping tonight. 
She tried them on and squealed because she liked them so much!

Our rule is that she has to walk around the store. 
There were too many times that we'd buy the shoes and when we got home, she'd never wear them. She couldn't tell me why she didn't like them, she just didn't. 

So now she has to walk around the store. 

 This time she liked them so much she spun around and at one point, even started dancing!

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

More Test Results

Beth has been sick for over a week now. She won the gold medal a week and 1/2 ago and that Monday was her day off so she stayed home and did chores. When she woke up on Tuesday she told me she didn't feel good and that she had a headache.

I gave her some ibuprofin for the headache but the diarrhea stayed for a while. Day after day in fact.

We took her to the doctor and everything was normal. Her BP was good, her oxygen was normal, she didn't have a temperature so the doctor decided to order some urine, stool and blood samples and we came home to wait.

They called today and Beth has food poisoning! It takes between 7-10 days to run it's course and she's been getting better. She can start eating regularly again and she's definitely happy about that. By the way, we've thrown out the frozen food she ate the night before she got sick!

We're planning to have her go back to work this weekend and she's ready! It's been 8 days since she left the house! It has not been fun for her.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

40 Teams - Lots of Noise and Fun and Smiles!

We got there early to make sure we all got seats, but when the coach got there we found out Beth was assigned to a lane a few lanes away from us. But we realized we were able to watch her ball hit the pins!

 Every time she got up to bowl she'd look over at us and smile and we'd all cheer and holler!

We left our seats when it was time for the medal ceremony.

"And the gold medal winner is..."

"Elizabeth Anderson!"

 We went to The Pancake House afterward to celebrate.
 She loves her hot tea!

 We missed Diana but other than that it was a perfect day!

Thursday, October 27, 2016

I Was Watching TV When A Familiar Face Came On The Screen

I was pleasantly surprised!
Gosh she was so cute!

Just an average commercial.
About two kids playing with a toy.

Great job Fisher Price!
I've always liked you!

Sunday, October 23, 2016

She Walked By With The Dawn Dishsoap...

We figured something was up.
"Beth, what are you doing?"
"I cleaneen my trash can."

She's never cleaned her trash cans before.
She always put trash bags in them.
I asked her where she was going to clean it.

"Beth, you should do that outside."

"Or you could do it in the bathtub."

 I checked on her and there she was.
Cleaning her trash cans.

"You takeen my piture?" 

"Uh, yea!"
You're cleaning your trash cans!
Without being asked!
Of course I'm taking your picture!

She really surprises me sometimes!

Thursday, October 20, 2016

One of the Most Interesting Things About Raising a Child With Special Needs

One of the most interesting things about raising a child with special needs is the reaction from the people around us.

When our family walks into a restaurant and the host seats us, I'm usually in the back. You know, to  make sure all the kids follow dad and make it to the table.

I can see the other customers faces as the host walks by, then Chuck, then usually Sharaya or Diana and they keep talking to the person they're with or they take a bite of food. But then Beth walks by and almost every single time they stop... fork half way to their mouths or mid sentence - and they turn to look at Beth. And they watch her walk all the way past.

Sometimes they look up and catch my eye and the look on my face varies. I'm sure it depends on the look on theirs. Sometimes it's knowing - an older couple with great big smiles and they'll wink at me. I wonder if they have a child or grandchild with special needs.

Other times it's people who just don't know what to think about her. They just look.

Still others will whisper something to the people they're with and kind of point to Beth, like they're saying, "Quick. Look at her." They don't smile. They just stare.

It's hard.

But then there are people who look at your child with love. They look at her and know she can do anything she puts her mind to. They look at her and are proud of her accomplishments.

I actually caught one of the moments with my camera. It was at Beth's high school graduation in 2004 and she had just walked across the stage, shook the principal's hand and received her diploma. Then she made her way down the stairs, past some of the faculty and was headed back to her seat when I snapped this:

She's completely oblivious to them but you can tell they're celebrating her accomplishment. They're genuinely excited for her! That doesn't happen all the time and I love the way they're looking at her!

Saturday, October 15, 2016

The Reason We Did It

We spent weeks planning it. 
Lots of secrets and hushed conversations. 
The first stop was the elementary school.
Allie was so surprised!

When we got home from the airport, Beth looked up at her, then went back to her movie. I told her, "Beth get up and give her a hug!" 

She really wasn't very emotional about Diana flying in to surprise her. Although later on that day she did bowl her best game in weeks! I think it was because Diana was watching. :)

When Sharaya arrived at the restaurant, she told Diana, "I knew you were coming." (Diana accidently spilled the beans during facetime a few days earlier. She tried to cover but Sharaya figured it out!)

I got to spend an entire afternoon with her. We went down to the beach, walked along the waterfront and spent a couple hours just talking. I absolutely loved it!

Diana was in town for less than a week so we had to plan both birthday's during that time. It worked out great and I loved having all my girls together again!

Monday, October 10, 2016

Today's The Day!

We celebrated Beth's birthday on Saturday even though her birthday is today, October 10. (I'll tell you why in another post.)

She said she wanted to go to The Spaghetti Factory this year and we were all happy with that! We hadn't been there in a long time.

Of course we invited Nick and his parents and the way it all worked out, she ended up sitting between Nick and his mom. Before they got there I asked her if she was okay with that, "Uh, yea!" Okay, just checking. :)

She's 32 this year and has been telling everyone! Thirty two!

Happy Birthday Beth!