Sunday, August 27, 2017

Our Weekend - Special Olympics Has Begun!

On Saturday we took Beth to her first Special Olympic bowling practice. Just like in years past, she didn't get to bowl on the first day because she had to leave for work. They're still getting organized and assigning all the bowlers to their lanes and it just takes longer than usual. She was a little disappointed but she understood.

 Today after lunch I took her grocery shopping. She was completely out of food! We know because she starts eating ours. 😏 We notice the granola bars have disappeared awfully fast and Chuck and I will just look at each other. While she was at work last night I went down to look at her fridge and it was completely empty! I so wish she would talk more.  

So tonight we went shopping. First we stopped at the gas station so I could get my car washed. Even in her 30's, the car wash still makes her nervous.

At the grocery store we usually go our separate ways then meet up at the register but this time she had limited funds (doesn't get paid until next week) so I walked with her to help her keep track of her money.

Now her kitchen is stocked and she's ready for the new week!

Friday, August 25, 2017


Beth doesn't defend herself or speak up when she needs to. I read about some people with Down Syndrome who are self-advocates and speak in front of large audiences and Beth is definitely not one of them.

Just now I had gone into the bathroom (she also doesn't close the door all the way when she's in there) and when I saw she was there, I excused myself and went out. 

I took a letter out to the mailbox, stood on the sidewalk and talked with a neighbor for a few minutes went back into the house and headed back to the bathroom to turn off the curling iron.

Beth was at the sink and that's when she tells me, "You turn the light off when I was in there."

"I did?"

"Yep" and she headed down the hall.

I instantly felt guilty but then I thought, 'Wait a second!' 

"Beth you should have yelled at me, "Mom! You turned the light off!" Or even yelled, "Hey!" Or something to get my attention."

Why wouldn't she have spoken up? Why would she just sit in the dark? I mean... gosh! Why...??

Sometimes her choice to not talk leaves me speechless. 

(A few years ago I wanted to take some pictures of her and had to practically beg her to let me take them. She sure didn't need to talk to express how she felt on this day!)

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Special Delivery!

For over a week I told myself I needed to remember to take pictures when they came. I could get pictures of them going down the stairs and bringing the old one up.

Pictures of them pulling the new one out of the truck.

Pictures of them setting it up. 

And before I knew it they were here! I went down to tell Beth that they had arrived. Then I went up to show them where to get the old one. As they brought it upstairs I could hear Beth squealing and singing. 

When they came back in I told them not to worry about Beth, that she was just happy. Then the 20-something burly guy said, "That's okay. I sing when I'm happy too." 👨

They set it all up and left. That's when I remembered to take the pictures. Aarrgg!! Oh well, what can ya do? I did go back downstairs and take this one:

The bed she had been sleeping on was one we bought for Diana when she was 13 I think? It definitely needed to be replaced. Plus Beth has been waking up with terrible back aches so we hoped the new bed would help.

She'd had a queen size for a while but didn't like it so when Diana moved to Pennsylvania last year and decided not to take her bed, we decided to give it to Beth. But it had lived a good life and it was time for a new one.

We shopped around a few places before finding this one. It's a memory foam and we got it at Mattress City. I asked her this morning if her back hurt and she cheerfully said, "Nope!" 

Right now she's using a bedspread my mom made me when I was in Jr High (we tend to keep things a long time around here) but we plan to go shopping in the next couple of weeks for a new comforter and sheets. Maybe some cute pillows... pink of course!

Friday, August 18, 2017

Traffic On The Beach. No Really! Actual Traffic!

Chuck and I spent our Anniversary at the coast, at the ocean! That's one thing I miss the most (besides family of course!) about living in San Diego. Just being 15 minutes from the actual ocean.

So Chuck and I left here early Monday for the 3 hour drive to Ocean Shores. We set out our chairs and spent the next few hours just watching the waves and breathing in that amazing ocean air!

I could sit and watch the waves all day!! There are a few differences between the beaches in San Diego and the beaches in Washington, one being traffic on the shore. Yep! Actual traffic!

Here in Washington you can drive right out onto the sand. I'm always nervous at first about getting stuck but they've packed it down especially for driving. So we found a spot and parked.

While you're sitting there watching the seagulls and the waves, you're also watching the occasional traffic go by.

We were gone 12 hours and Beth was here by herself the entire time. Monday is her day off so I left her a list of chores like emptying the trash, doing her laundry, vacuuming, she loves to do chores around the house! Seriously. I think it makes her feel like she owns the place or something! :)

We told Sharaya where we were going and when we expected to be home... just in case. But everything was fine when we got back, it was such a beautiful way to spend the day! (This isn't our only celebration though. We have a trip planned to Cabo San Lucas in December!!)

So where have you gone for special celebrations? Any special destinations?

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Older and Wiser. At Least That's What We Keep Telling Ourselves!

Monday, August 14 is our 35th Wedding Anniversary. 

This was taken at our 1st Anniversary.

And this was taken last year.

 Rounder faces, a little less hair.
But still loving each other and loving the God who brought us together.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Remember The Phrase 'Pounding The Pavement'?

Beth has had so many jobs over the years. For a while she worked in the dining room at a McDonalds but at her break time they allowed her to have a free snack like fries or whatever and it got to the point that's the only reason she would work. She wouldn't do a good job, instead she would just quickly swipe a table or sort of sweep just so she could go get her snack. It became all about the food.

She worked at Creation Station for a short time. It was a store filled with stuff kids could use to create; paper towel rolls, empty spools of thread, cotton balls, springs, lids... schools would have field trips to this place and they would make anything they wanted. 

(These are from Google.)

When they were done, Beth would help clean up, put everything away and prepare the space for the next group. It was a really good fit and she liked it there, but unfortunately they went out of business.

She worked at The Dollar Tree but there were some issues between the manager and other co-workers (personality conflicts and arguments at work) and her job coach decided it was too toxic.

She worked a short time at Auntie Anne's, offering samples to shoppers. But she's very shy and wouldn't actually talk to anyone. She'd just stand there, then her feet would ache and her back would hurt... just not a good fit.

Then her job coach found Little Caesars. This store went out of their way to hire and train and include people with special needs. Beth was brought in to fold boxes and everyone there loved her!

The one problem was it's location. The store was about 45 minutes to an hour from our house by car. The DART bus however, would make numerous stops along the way and she'd end up being on the bus for 2-3 hours each way. And she didn't get off work until 8pm so that made for some long days and very late nights.

They found another LC closer to our home and that has worked out so well!

She's been with the company now for a little over 6 years and she folds about 450-500 boxes in a 3 hour shift. About a month ago she told me that she likes it so much that she wishes she could do it every single day! So... I called her job coach (I love the way the Lord works!) and when she went in to talk to the manager, he was folding boxes! She told him that Beth wanted to work more hours and... "Yes!! I hate folding boxes!" So he put down the box and immediately added her to the schedule!

So now she's working 3 days a week. At a job she absolutely loves. Course, the bigger paycheck doesn't hurt either!

And I learned today that Beth has made such an impact on them, they're hiring another person with special needs! 

So what kind of jobs have you had over the years? Which one was your favorite?

Thursday, August 3, 2017

She Was Actually Skipping!

Beth and Nick got to see Despicable Me the other day. They were so glad to hang out again! 

A month or so ago, Beth caught a cold and was home for a week. Then when she felt well enough to go back to All Aboard, Nick went on vacation and he was gone for a week! 

They went quite a while without seeing each other so you can imagine how excited Beth was when Nick's mom asked if she could go to the movies! 

Chuck and I drove her to the theater and Nick was out in the lobby when Beth came out of the bathroom. When she saw him she literally started skipping toward him! This girl is in love!

They bought a drink to share (one straw!) and let me take a picture before they headed to the theater. She was beaming all day!