Thursday, October 31, 2013

43/52::October 31

A photo of my child, once a week, every week, in 2013.

He loved this merry go round at the park we visited on Sunday & spent most of his time playing on our around it. :)

Friday, October 25, 2013

This Moment::Amber's Unofficial Birthday Party::October 25

On Wednesday, Amber finally visited and spent some time (Crazy work schedules on her part - crazy life on mine! ;) ). I offered to make a birthday cake, since we haven't celebrated her birthday yet. She said that she'd be sad celebrating w/o Tino, so I made Rice Krispy Treats and put candles in it, as an unofficial birthday cake :)

She was funny. She had just dyed her hair that morning. I thought she looked great, but as soon as I said we'd celebrate unofficially with a Rice Krispy Treat, and started making them, she made a mad dash to the bathroom to redo her hair and make-up, saying that she looked like crap & knew I'd put her pic on fb and my blog - hahaha! :) Silly, silly girl! I don't think she could look like crap if she tried! She is always beautiful!

Happy Birthday, dear Amber! I know that I don't always tell you, but I think that you are amazing, I love you tons, and I'm super proud to be your mom. I hope that 21 is the best year yet! ♥

Monday, October 21, 2013

42/52::October 21

Can you believe that we only have 10 more weeks left in 2013? Crazy!!

Yesterday, I took all of the boys' (who live at home) pictures; I usually take them the first day of school, but I'm running behind! ;) Here is Michael's:

A photo of my child, once a week, every week, in 2013.

Finally! Now I can replace all of the pics from last year with this year's :) I still have to take Emily's tonight.

Michael liked having his picture taken, and Jared was there with me to make him laugh and smile. He loves his big bro a lot!

41/52::October 21

Oh man! I forgot to do this post last week, so here it is now:

I showed this picture back when I did the Pumpkinland post with this caption: "Since he wouldn't do the cut-outs, I had him back up to this Dr. Seuss's Cat in the Hat hat that was stapled to the side of the barn :)"

It really was funny that he wouldn't poke his head through the cut-outs this year. I kept trying to get him to do it, but he'd poke his hand through instead. Funny, funny boy :)

My AHA Moment in Photography::October 21

"Do any of you have the first photo you clicked that made you fall in love with photography? Are you brave enough to share it?"

I was asked that on a photo group that I'm part of. I knew exactly what picture that was... but I can't find it. BUT, I have another picture of the same subject, in the same location, on the same day that the love of photography hit me so hard.

This is my little sister, Charla. Other than "Wyoming", I can't tell you where it was taken. It was taken while I was visiting my dad in the summer of '86. That would have made me 16. The picture I wanted to post had Charla on a swing and in the background were little purple flowers. I was so happy with how that picture turned out - though now I'd look at it and say that the background was too dark. ;) It is easy to look at past work and critique it too harshly, isn't it?

That next school year, I remember finding out that my friend was in photography, and I took the picture for him to see; I wanted to take a photography class in high school, but I didn't have a cool camera and I thought photography was only for the rich kids. Years later, I learned that the friend who was in photography that year had earned the money to buy his camera by delivering newspapers - I wish that I wouldn't have let not having a cool camera or lack of money seem like such a limiting factor, but I'm so thankful that nearly 30 years after that incident I am finally "living the dream". :) I love photography and often tell people that it is my therapy; when I am photographing, I can't think of anything but that shot - all other stresses take a back burner to that minute. I love that feeling :)

Thursday, October 17, 2013

ill will::October 17

"Our computer and my camera and perhaps my stubborn will all died or became ill a few months ago." I read this words on all buttoned up today, and I felt a connection. An affirmation. I have been there, and am currently residing there, too.

I thought it was just a problem I had had, but then I've heard similar experiences by many others after hard things just keep hitting and hitting and hitting so relentlessly.

I am, well, mostly *was* strong willed. I am a fighter. I am an advocate. I am a rooter-for-the-underdog. I try to be the difference I'd like to see.

But all of that is tiring, energy sucking work.

When my mom was in the nursing home, I had many battles to fight for her: wrong meds, them wanting her to drive her Jazzy wheelchair about 5 blocks to and from dialysis on a bitterly cold January morning at 8:30 - you know, the kind of days that freeze your buggers and hurts to breath it... later on, they took her wheelchair because she was avoiding hitting people and damaged a refrigerator by running into it - she was never the same after the fall she took when the CNA's "gently fell" with her, as I was told protocol was; her retort was, "Gently fell, my ass! They all fell on top of me!" and her osteoparosis-brittle spine fractured yet again, leaving her to never walk or stand again.

Nursing homes suck.

I encouraged her to leave that nursing home before the wheelchair was taken away, but since it was close by her kids, she opted to stay. She was later "encouraged" by the nursing home to move, because she didn't trust that they had her best interest in mind. Trust, my ass! They were horrific.

And I had dealt with them because they don't listen to the inmates patients.

When she moved nursing homes, I told her my fight was gone.

When Emily's art teacher told her that she held no promise and should transfer, I told the counselor about it, but I didn't fight the teacher. My fight was gone.

It returns every once in a while in an unexpected fashion, but I, more often than not, take the path of least resistance.

My computer and my camera are fine, but my stubborn will has become ill too.

I hope it gets well soon.

You may send balloons or flowers if you like. ;)

Monday, October 14, 2013

Karen and the Boys::October 14

This year, our big family pic will be a collage, so on Friday, I took Karen and the boys' picture at Pumpkinland:

I love Karen's eyes in this one, and Bentley looks adorable - too bad Aiden isn't looking at the camera! ;)

These turned out nice too - Such a cute little family :)

Now, all I have left is a pic of Steve, me, and the kids who still live at home - unless Amber and Tino want to update their picture. This is a great time to do it, though! The canyons are all so pretty right now. ♥

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Pumpkinland::October 13

Friday, at the beginning of the day, I was worried. We had a therapy appointment and a Pumpkinland adventure to go to, but I was still out of sorts. Tuesday, Bill had gone to the hospital, more confused than I'd ever seen him, and I had Bentley and Michael by myself. I had no idea how to get Bill to the hospital since I had Ben and Mike to take along. Fortunately for me, a friend brought Emily home because she was sick. Unfortunately for Emily, she was my backup plan until Josh and Hayley got here to watch Bentley so that Steve could take Emily to the doctor. By the end of the night, Bill was admitted to the hospital, Emily was diagnosed with strep, and I was emotionally done.

Wednesday, Emily stayed home from school, then Thursday started Fall Break. Thursday, I felt like I was having an emotional breakdown. Everything seemed larger than life. The medical bills were starting to come in. I hadn't received the PIP forms for the insurance to pay for the medical bills. The insurance companies, theirs and mine, were calling. I was worried about Bill. Emily didn't feel well. Bentley was here. There was a dispute about the family picture I wanted to have taken (conclusion: my big family picture will be a collage this year of all of my adult kids' families and the ones who live at home and Steve and I will have our pic taken. Sometimes, this is the best that can happen - I took pics of Karen and the boys at Pumpkinland for the collage. I'll post them shortly :) ). When Steve called to check on me, he asked what he could do to help.... I lost it. I said something to the effect of, "I don't know what you can do. You are at work. As far as I can tell, there is nothing you can do!" About an hour later, he pulled into the driveway. I love that when the crap hits the fan, I know that I can depend on Steve to help me. I truly appreciate him!

So on Friday, I was feeling a little bit better, but not a lot.

I took Emily to her therapy appt (she struggles with depression). I went in with her, since she said that she had nothing to talk about. I dumped out all of my stresses to the therapist. He validated me. I felt so grateful! I felt better than I had all week.

And then, when I walked into my favorite nursery, all of the rest of the frustrations ceased. I love that place. And here is our visit in pictures:

My cute grandson, Aiden, in the midst of the pumpkins :)

I love all of the decorations they have scattered through the corn maze and pumpkin patch.

This walkway is one of my favorite things at Pumpkinland. I'd love to make one of my own one of these years :)

Sunflowers are one of my autumn loves :)

Cole, Emily, and Aiden ahead of us in the corn maze.

Emily, Matt and Aiden, being themselves.

Michael and Matt.

I loved this picture of Karen and the boys :)

Michael refused to poke his head through the cut-outs - he would only put his hand through.

Since he wouldn't do the cut-outs, I had him back up to this Dr. Seuss's Cat in the Hat hat that was stapled to the side of the barn :)

Yes. Yes it was.

On Friday, while I was doing our stuff, Steve took Bill home from the hospital. I was surprised that he made it out alive. This was a trip that really made me worried. I told Bill that there are things that we need to work out, so that if and when I have another scare with him, so that more things are planned out, so that I know his wishes, and so that plans have already been put in order.

On Saturday, I did a photoshoot up the canyon for some friends. It was so beautiful! And my soul drank in the beauty and peace that only nature brings. Then, Steve, who was my assistant - he is crazy and fun and makes kids laugh - and Michael, who went with us and had a nice time visiting with everyone, went shopping. When we got home, Karen was here with the boys. The kids had called her and told her that they were bored and alone, so she took them to Walmart for snacks and a Redbox video and slept over.

Today, Karen and the boys, Michael, Steve & I went to church. The rest of the day, we ate and watched tv shows and enjoyed each other's company.

And today, I feel like I am in a good place to start the week tomorrow, though I am going to miss everyone as we go back to our regular schedule.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Today::October 9

Dealing with scary medical garbage for too long.
Pushed to the absolute end of my rope.
About to crack. break. implode.
Take a walk with Sweetheart.
Pour out troubles without inhibition.
Body tired. Mind relaxes. Troubles minimized.
Ready to go on.

Lunchtime!! A close-up of a Spider's Spinneret::October 9

Lunchtime! (for the spider, I mean :) )

Emily excitedly called me over when this big beetle got stuck in the spider's web. I was eager for another chance to film its spinnerets in action. Nature is amazing!!

Monday, October 7, 2013

Bentley::October 7

He was loving playing on the grass while the big kids were on the swing and running around. He is Grandma Mema's little cutie pie :)

Sunday, October 6, 2013

40/52::October 6

A photo of my child, once a week, every week, in 2013.
We went up to Karen's tonight to give her a new carseat - Bentley was in the van with me when we got rear-ended last week. Everyone is fine, but the pediatrician insisted that the carseat be replaced - the insurance company will reimburse us for it. While we were there, the boys liked swinging on Aiden's swingset, and Bentley played on a blanket. It was awesome to eat apples from their apple tree and see that the walnut tree is producing lots of walnuts - sounds like the makings of a delicious pie! ;) It was a great way to spend an evening. ♥

Thursday, October 3, 2013

37/52 and 39/52::October 3

A photo of my child, once a week, every week, in 2013.
Oh man! I really got behind on the photo project!

This picture embarrasses me. A lot! LOL :) Michael had just got up and started playing with the dusty, old fan that was in the basement, so his hair is a mess and the fan looks so ratty! Let me tell you about this fan: It is just a normal window fan, but Michael has such an obsession with fans and also with taking things apart, so he took off the front and back screen guards, which meant that Steve had to remove the cord so that the fan can't be turned on so that Michael wouldn't chop his fingers off. Michael loves fans, and he also loves taking things apart, but wants them to always work, so he has a love/hate relationship with this fan. He wants it to work, but he doesn't want to put back on the screen guards to keep himself safe. He asks every day for Steve to fix the fan... I'd love to throw it in the garbage, but he is with the silly thing for most of the day!

This picture was taken at Emily's birthday party on her birthday last week. Michael loves birthday parties :)

Make a Wish::October 3

A Wishing Flower just for you :)