Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Hard To Put Into Words

Diana sent me a text this morning encouraging me to post an update. (What would we do without our kids?!) I love you girls!!

Last Thursday we all flew down to San Diego to attend what was supposed to be my nieces wedding, but ended up being her fiance's memorial.

She had it at the same place she was going to have the wedding, a beautiful park with a river running through it. The caterers still came, the photographer was there and she had new cakes made.

One of the saddest moments came when Steven's youngest daughter took the microphone and said that since she'd never be able to have a father-daughter dance with her dad, and Karlene wasn't able to dance with him, would she be willing to dance with her? So the two of them began slow dancing. Part way through my brother-in-law got up and finished the dance with them! 😭

Steven was a dump truck driver and the company he worked for put his name on the back of his truck. A bunch of drivers were there and Karlene had them all honk their horns for a few minutes in honor of him.

There were tears but there was also a lot of laughter and happy memories of a man who loved well. One woman got up and said that she met Steven when she was an addict. He found out where she was staying and continually brought her food and checked up on her. She said that she's been clean and sober now for 3 years, because of him. 

And I found out the reason they left him on life-support was because he was an organ donor. He saved multiple lives, even in his death.

It was a difficult day but I'm so glad we were all able to be there to support my niece. Hug your family and friends! Lives can change in an instant.

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

A Tragic Turn Of Events

Diana flew out here from Pennsylvania last week and we're all flying to San Diego to attend my nieces wedding on Saturday, August 10.

My niece Karlene has been through a lot the last few years, mostly due to poor choices, addictions, hanging with the wrong people, etc. She took responsibility for her actions and paid her dues. Now she's clean and sober, a contributing member of society living a healthy life.

She met her current boyfriend S a few years ago and he's walked with her through most of this difficult journey. He has loved her kids like they were his own and has been her rock.

Last Friday I was at the grocery store and my phone rang. As I'm putting it up to my ear I can hear somebody sobbing and Karlene says, "Aunt Cindy?!? I need you to pray!! Please pray!!!" 

S was riding his motorcycle to work and someone pulled out in front of him. He swerved to avoid hitting the car and fell hard on the road. The other driver kept going. As he laid in the road he was able to call 911 and then called Karlene. When she got there he was telling the EMTs that he felt okay and didn't want to go to the hospital. 

She took him to his moms house so he could change his shirt or something and he began to complain that his chest hurt. She insisted they go to the hospital and when they got there, they put him in an ambulance and took him to another hospital, a trauma center I think. That's where she found out that he had ruptured his aorta and they immediately took him into surgery. That's when she called me.

They repaired his aorta and got him stabilized. That night and all day Saturday she and all of his family were able to be with him and hang out in his room.

At 2:30 Sunday morning my phone rang again. I heard those familiar sobs again and, "Aunt Cindy I need you to pray!! Please pray!! Just pray!!!!"

S had rolled over. That's all. He was just laying in the hospital bed and he rolled over. And went into cardiac arrest. Six doctors and nurses came running into the room and one of them "jumped on his chest" and began compressions.

She was absolutely hysterical and I will never forget the sound of her sobs and the way she was yelling into the phone, telling me everything that was happening in real time. It was gut-wrenching.

They got his heart beating again but he suffered brain damage and has been unresponsive since. He's now on life support. 

The wedding they've been planning and one so many of us have been so excited to go to will now be a Celebration of Life.

Please keep Karlene and his whole family in your prayers.

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Rough Morning

I always get up at 7am on Wednesdays (my day off from work) to help Beth with her hair and when my alarm went off this morning I could tell she wasn't up yet.

I went downstairs to find her still in bed, Cpap machine was off, her phone was on the bed next to her and she was snoring. This was 45 minutes after she should have been up! And usually her phone is charging on her desk on the other side of the room.

She doesn't oversleep very often but when I come down to wake her up she immediately realizes she's overslept and throws her covers off. Today she just laid there and rubbed her eyes. I encouraged her to wake up because her bus would be here soon! 

Now remember, the word 'hurry' is not in Beth's vocabulary. I've spoken to other moms and it's the same way with their daughters who have Down Syndrome. It's just very hard for Beth to move fast. She has done it, but it's not something she can do when she's being told to move. I don't know if it's her being stubborn or if there's a true disconnect in the neutrons in her brain. Anyway, it took her 15 minutes to come upstairs and then she went into the bathroom. Ten minutes later her phone rang, it was DART telling her they're on their way.

To keep this short, let's just say I wasn't very pleasant this morning. The driver is standing at the front door as Beth slowly gets her vitamin, picks up her phone, remembers (out loud) that she didn't get to brush her teeth, heads back to the bathroom to get a hairbrush... and I was trying to literally push her out the door. (The driver can leave without her after just 5 minutes...)

She finally gets out the door, no silly smile on her way to the bus, no look back as it's pulling out of the driveway... oh well. My girls are old enough that I know these days come and go and it doesn't destroy them. In our family we've never stayed mad for very long.

So it made me smile when I got this text this afternoon:

'i am so sorry about happen today this morning'

I told her I was sorry for getting mad at her and that I loved her. 💖

It will be good to talk with her when she gets home. 

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Random Stuff

Chuck and I walked down by the waterfront tonight. The weather was gorgeous, summer has finally arrived in Seattle!

As we were walking back to the car I noticed a guy moving boats out of the water and loading them into storage spaces. I know absolutely nothing about boats so I don't know the correct term for the space, is it called a slip? I stood there for a few minutes watching them work. I thought it was interesting!



Yard work really is work but it's sure worth it when everything starts to bloom!

I was walking across the parking lot at work when I saw this pine cone completely squished into a heart! I just had to take a picture!

Chuck, Beth and I went to see The Lion King the other day and we absolutely loved it!

Have you seen The Lion King yet?
Do you enjoy working in the yard or do you consider it work?

I hope you have a great start to your week!

Thursday, July 25, 2019


 Linking up with Rebecca Jo
Go on over to her blog to read more Thankful posts!

The last couple of weeks have been so busy but I've been full of joy. Today alone was an 11 hour day but inside I'm just... happy. Content. Thankful where I am at this point in my life.

Diana will be here in just 8 days!
Gorgeous sunny weather this week
Spending every day with Allie last week
Beginning to prepare for our vacation
My blooming hydrangea
When my husband makes me laugh

Have a great week everybody!

Sunday, July 21, 2019

Workin' Hard

We had VBA last week so for my department that meant moving dozens of tables and hundreds of chairs and setting up all the class rooms.

Beth came to work on Thursday and helped set up 3 classrooms on the third floor.

I took these during the week and Allie wanted to be in them!
She's such a great model!

 When we got home we sat at the kitchen table for a few minutes when all of the sudden...

After about 5 minutes she woke up and quickly headed to the living room. I thought she was going downstairs and when I got up from the table I saw this:

She was absolutely zonked! She slept for about 30 minutes then it was like she jumped up and came back out to the table. "I was sleepeen." 

Yes you were!

Have you ever worked on a project that left you absolutely exhausted?

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Been Looking Forward To It

This year we decided to go downtown a few hours before the parade started and walk around looking at all the shops. We stopped at the Edmonds Bakery to get some breakfast and we were shocked at all the cookie jars! So many cute ones!

I have a cookie jar that belonged to my grandparents. She's got to be at least 60 years old but I still use her! Do you have a special cookie jar?

While we waited for the parade to start, I walked around a little more. I really love the heart of our little town. 

We were invited to a friends party this year. I'm always nervous in those situations, especially if I don't know the people really well. Ugh! But we had a good time. I think next year we'll let Beth stay at home. She really didn't know anyone and just hung out with me all day. She'd much rather be at home writing, singing or watching TV!

Girls photo! 
Beth is in the middle row, left of center and I'm behind her

Then on Sunday Sharaya and Allie came over for s'mores! 

Thanks for the picture Sharaya!

I look forward to the 4th of July every year!
We really had a great day!

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Metro Rodeo

Chuck drives a city bus and every year they have what they call a Rodeo, where the drivers can take the buses through an obstacle course. A few weekends ago we sat outside on bleachers and cheered and moaned as they ran over cones and others just barely squeezed through tight spaces.

Then they took a break and we all ate a free lunch from Famous Dave's BBQ food truck. Oh it was so good!

The sun came out, they had a car show, free drinks... Chuck and I don't do stuff like this very often and we really had a great time!

They had a very old bus parked out there and we got to go in and check it out. 

The comparison between the old and the new was amazing! 



It's definitely not a desk job!

In the drivers seat of a 60' articulated bus.

 A clever play on words!

Chuck didn't participate this year but he's thinking about it for 2020!


 I don't know how they drive those things! I was nervous just watching them!