Thursday, August 30, 2012

Where Did All The Asthma Go?

One Sunday morning way back when, we sat on a bench at church.  Isaac was about 18 months and I had him dressed so spiffy.  The family in front of us had a little boy, about 2 or 3, who turned around to play with Isaac.  Then it happened.  He spewed, hacked, snot flying, sputtering through a long cough.  I moved Isaac immediately.  That week he got sick.  Nasty cold.  Then he couldn't breathe.  So I took him to the pediatrician.  Diagnosis:RSV.  I said, "Hey!  He's 18 months!  I thought RSV was for tiny babies" No.  Older babies can get it too.  The RSV filtered through his little body and he developed asthma.  For years we used a nebulizer each day to treat the wheezing.  Every time we went camping, each time we were around fire, every day of an inversion, colds and coughs, grass blowing in the wind, playing with a dog, heck, just being around people who owned a dog, swimming, going outside to ride his bike.  All of those and more would bring on an asthma attack. When Isaac was about 8 we put him on an inhaler and he began taking Singular.  Wow.  What a difference Singulair made.  He didn't wheeze so much.  It was pretty much being around a dog and environmental factors that got the asthma worked up.
Then Isaac turned 12.  About a month or so later we stopped the Singulair.  Just to see.  We kept Zyrtec around just in case.  He took that each night.  But we realized that he wasn't using his inhaler anymore.  Oops.  Needed it just once.  But here we are on the cusp of September and, even though the inhaler is in my purse, he hasn't used it.  At all.  Camping, swimming, hiking, dogs, fair animals, fires, scooter riding, smog, a cold.  No wheezing.  No asthma. I think we're done with the asthma.  It's a miracle.  Well, we knew he'd grow out of it.  He takes Zyrtec only when allergies get his nose a'runnin'.  I still think about that little boy at church and wonder why his parents thought it was a great idea to take him to church.  I can't say I'm grateful that Isaac had asthma.  But I am so grateful he is done.  Now he wants a dog.  Umm...

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Aaaaand... They're Off!

Our day began at 6:30 am.  Isaac's first words when I woke him up were "I hate this".  I told him to get up and get it over with then.  But first!  I got stuff for my kids' first day of school treat.  Here it is.  I got them each a cup and did card stock dividers and then filled each section with candy.
Kisses, Tootsie Rolls, StarBursts, lollipops, Smarties...
But the Fruit by the Foot didn't fit, so they hung out next to the cups. 
And here's the note.. 
When Isaac read the note he said "That's really cool".  He ate breakfast, got dressed, brushed his teeth, checked on the goats, then headed for the bus stop.  Doesn't he look excited?!  He gets out in a few minutes and then I'll find out about his day when he gets home.  Yay 7th grader! 
Sam recommended I just take his picture in the car before we even left.  He is excited to have Isaac's 5th grade teacher.  At least I got a slight smile.  Yay 5th grader!!
Ruthie changed her outfit a couple times.  Decided on purple.  She has the same 3rd grade teacher both of her brothers had.  YAY!  And Yay 3rd grader!! 
The 2 younger kids don't get out for another hour. Then we'll see how their day went.  Me?  Laundry is done, my name is on the PTA checking account and my house is still a mess.  Well, relatively speaking.  It is an early out day after all. Yay mom!!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Finally, A Date With A Hot Guy.

Friday night I had a date with a hot guy.  Daniel and I went to dinner and a movie.  We realized we haven't been on a real (no kids with us) movie date in 2 years.  It was kinda nice.  Saturday was the annual Poppy's Hike.  We headed down to Abbie and Poppy's early.  Abbie had camo handkerchiefs for each of the boys.  My boys indulged and took 2 each and turned into some ninja things.  Here are my boys...
And the whole group.  Ruthie and I stayed behind with all the other moms and daughters.  It was a fun day.  And we didn't break the McDs when we went to lunch after the hike.
Tonight is back to school night for Isaac.  Tomorrow night is back to school night for Ruthie and Sam.  Then Wednesday is the big day!  Back to school for everyone under 5 feet tall.  This morning I went to the dermatologist for another 6 month check up.  Guess what?!  NO Pre Cancer!  So I don't have to go back for another year.  Yay me!  Last night grandma and grandpa came over for dinner and after dinner we played Sorry!.  It was fun.  Then Daniel gave each of the kids (and me) a father's blessing.  I love that we can have that tradition when the kids go back to school.  Or any time they feel they need a priesthood blessing.  I need to go to the store tonight to collect some fun stuff for the back to school morning gift for the kids.  I am mixing it up this year.  I'll take pictures and show ya later.  Daniel bought wood and stuff to build another goat house in the pasture.  With 6 goats we are short on housing.  But Bella and Angelica are adapting well.  Tonight we have goat club and then our last club meeting is in September.  It's been so fun.  We are looking forward to goat club 2013!  My eye is better.  My eye doc said the inflammation was gone.  I just did a drop a day for a couple more days.  Isaac is going to finish up the Horsemanship merit badge this week.  The bishop mentioned to Daniel that Isaac was so fun when he came to talk to the boys about horses.  Isaac had so many good questions and was really interested in all he had to teach.  We all have colds in one way or another.  My throat hurts and my sinuses are killing me, Ruthie is coughing and blowing her nose, Isaac is coughing and Daniel has a sore throat.  Sam has a stomach ache.  But I think that's just nerves.  I loaded up on cold meds today because no one gets a sick day home from school after tomorrow!  And with that, I'll leave you with the hot guy I love most. It's a laugh a minute I tell ya!

Thursday, August 16, 2012


The new goats

and Bella
And you already know...
Felix (the wether)
Iris (the award winning doe)
And Mama Cass

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

A Little About Us.

Now that the fair is over I feel like I can breathe..  And it's nice to not breathe in barn smell!  So I thought I'd catch up on how our summer's been winding down.

We begin school next Wednesday.  Ruthie will go into 3rd grade.  Sam will go into 5th grade.  Isaac is going into 7th grade, which means junior high.  He and I went to register Monday morning.  Much to our dismay, so did every other 7th, 8th and 9th grader. There were lots of long lines.  Then there were other longer lines.  Isaac is nervous, but so is every other 7th grader. (and so is his mom.. sshh) We will go back next Monday to meet teachers and then Tuesday we will have orientation.  Then the real life thing begins Wednesday.  Sam and Ruthie will be okay.  They will have terrific teachers and I know exactly how things work in 5th and 3rd grades.  And I'm the PTA secretary and will be there a lot.  A. Lot. 

We've finished up school shopping, except for shoes.  Everyone needs shoes.  I just don't understand how they go through shoes so quickly.

Last night we went to a dinner with my mom's family.  Sort of a family reunion, but my cousin got married today.  So his parents did a dinner for all the families so we could visit and enjoy some time together.  I sat with my aunt Ruth most of the evening and caught up with her.  When I lived with my grandparents after high school, Ruth and her hubby Chuck lived very close by.  I spent a lot of time with her and her young family.  Her oldest is 25 now.  Old I tell ya! 

We have been going through milk like crazy cakes I tell ya.  Between Isaac and Daniel, my two milk drinkers, we can go through a gallon a day.  I can't wait for school to begin just so Isaac isn't drinking it during the day.  At least you can't accuse either of them of being calcium poor.  Both of them are at a priesthood meeting tonight.  I love that Isaac will get his Sunday duds on on a Tuesday night, and then again tomorrow night for a fireside (Which he may not actually realize yet!) and not complain.  At least not too much.  He's a terrific priesthood holder.

Sam just had 2 cavities filled today.  We all went for cleanings yesterday and Sam was the cavity winner.  He's never had the shots in his mouth for fillings.  He was so brave and didn't even flinch.  I flinched.  And I didn't get the shots.  Both teeth were filled and he is nursing a sore mouth.  Ice cream and cake.  As long as he brushes tonight.

Remember I couldn't go on a date with a hot guy last Friday night because I got a Frisbee in the eye and then couldn't have gone anyway because we had the goat show?  Ya remember that?  Well, this Friday night is date night with hot guy.  I'm looking forward to it.  I go see the eye doc again in the morning.  I hope the swelling has gone down enough so I don't have to do the drops anymore.  It's a thick milky stuff that makes my eye cloudy. Needless to say I haven't been doing 4 drops a day.  2 is more likely.  At least the doc can rest assured I won't sue for malpractice!

This Saturday is Poppy's hike.  All the dads and sons go on a hike with my dad.  Then we all meet at McDs after for lunch.  And then we break the McDs.  Happens every year.  But we sure have fun breaking it. 

I have been reading each night to my kids through the summer.  We've read One Crazy Summer, Mrs. Frisby And The Rats Of Nimh, The Princess Academy and now I'm reading Tennis Shoes Among The Nephites.  After I got home from my mission, my youngest brother Aaron and I got the book on tape.  Yes, tape.  Cassette tape, not eight track.  I do remember eight tracks!  And had quite a few vinyl records.  Those were the days...  Anyhoo, Aaron and I would drive around in my green Grand Am on Saturdays.  We would go to the car wash, wash my car, go to 7-11, get a couple of bigs things of nachos and drinks and then drive around town listening to the book on tape.  And eat our nachos.  We got through the first 3 books on cassette.  When the 4th book came out we started listening and I don't think we actually finished before I was getting married.  Aaron and I never got to listen to the whole thing together.  Right after Aaron died I found the cassettes in my glove box as we got ready to sell my car.  I was sad that we never got to go back and finish.  But now I am reading the first book to my kids.  It's a series I hope to keep reading to them and not stop for any reason but the end of the books.  It's my tribute to my little brother and my kids' uncle Aaron. 

I challenged myself a bit ago to not chew on my nails and fingers.  Nasty habit.  So I bought some fun nail polish colors.  Black.  Orange.  Green.  Purple.  I love the black but Daniel thinks it's weird.  Whatever.  My favorite is the purple.  When I wear it I don't bite or chew.  Then my nails grow.  It's been wonderful to have nails.  Then came the fair.  Oh my!  My nails got chewed!  Not by me, though.  Just the whole deal of caring for an animal and the stall tore through my nails and they are still recuperating from the splitting and ripping and such madness.  I hope to have them back in good shape (literally) soon! 

So that's what's going on here.  We have had a fun and full summer.  I am so grateful for all the opportunities we've had to do new things and travel and spend time together. I will miss my kiddos come next Wednesday around 8:30 am.  After all, they are my Joy.

But then again, I am looking forward to a nap.  Oh, and a clean house!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

The Goat Girl.

Hey there boys.  Waiting in the arena on Friday afternoon.  Waiting for the goat show. 
Bye boys.  We were waiting for a while.
Hey!  It's show girl Ruthie.  She had just the hour before done the following... Bathed Iris.  Watched as our 4-H friends blow dried Iris.  Walked in circles with Iris while I played judge and she practiced moving around the front of Iris depending on where the judge (me) went.  Then she put Iris in to rest and got dressed in her show duds.  Then we walked into the arena with Iris and watched the dairy goats show.  Then we went around to enter the arena.
Here she is waiting for the Pygmy/Nigerian 0-6 month group.  The gal in green is Maureen, our 4-H leader.  She gave Ruthie small hints and loads of encouragement.
And...She's off!  Into the arena she goes.
Watch this!  It's so funny to see.  You train the goat to walk by tugging under the chin and pulling the tail.  When Iris would stop, Ruthie would just touch her tail and Iris would bolt.  I leaned over to Daniel and said her tail is an "on" switch.  Watch!  Wait.  Sorry.  You can't watch.  But it's fun to see.  Trust me.
They all lined up and waited for the judge.  The real one this time.  She kept turning around and smiling.  It was working!  Iris was doing great and Ruthann was awesome!
They walked around the arena again. 
They lined up again.  This time the judge went to each goat.  She looked at their teeth, their unders and felt their backs.
Then she sent them each to the center of the arena one by one.  Ruthie was the third over.  She was just so smiley!  It was fun to watch her. 
There they all are.  Ruthie is 3rd from the left.  It's the little ones on the right that were first and second.  I quote what Ruthie said when it was finished, "I wasn't dead last!  I was dead third (from last)"
She got a blue ribbon for her showing.  She also got $3 for that blue ribbon.  Awesome possum.
The blue ribbon is now hanging on her lariat on her bedroom wall.  She's already making plans for next year's show!.  And so are the boys.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Goat Post.

The fair is an exhausting affair.  But it's been fun.  2 days down, 2 days to go.  Tomorrow is the goat show.  Here's Iris in her stall.
Here's a neighbor to our south.
And here is a potential (like really most likely) addition to our herd.  Her name is Angelica and she belongs to our 4-H leader.  She needs a new home. 
And this is her friend Bella.  She also needs a new home.  So we will be getting these gals to our home soon.
And one last look at Iris.  We'll take lots of pictures while Ruthie shows her tomorrow.  Fun stuff!
And one day soon I will go the whole day without smelling like a barn.

Is It Hot In Here?

In honor of the "Dog Days Of Summer"...
We had "dogs" for dinner.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

All The World's A Fair.

What do these boots...
This cute western shirt...

These passes...
And this goat have to do with anything?
It's Fair Time!  The Weber County fair began today and goes till Saturday.  Ruthie will show Iris on Friday at 4:00 pm.  If you'd like to come, we'd love to see you.  If you happen to just come to the fair any old time, stop by barn B and proceed to stall 238.  We will be there much of the time. If you'd like, you can let me know you're coming and when and we'll be there for sure.  Here is Ruthie's poster and stall decor.  "Iris says Howdy!"  The mustache is because the theme for the fair is Ba-a-ad To The Bone.  Cute, heh? 
All in all it's a great experience.  But I do smell like a barn.  

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Lacerations, Inflammations And Steroids. Oh My.

So it's official.  I'm not going blind.  But I do have some problems.  There is inflammation between my retina and cornea which could cause problems.  So I'll do steroid eye drops for a week, then go back to see if it's getting better.
The "bruise" on the bottom of my eyeball (which looks much better today than it did yesterday) is a laceration.  I love that word.  So much better than a scratch or tear.  It will heal on its own.
He dilated my eyes to see if there is anything on the inside to be concerned about.  Nope.  In fact he said I have amazing retinas.  Especially for a 29 year diabetic.  My cataracts look good, but the steroids can make those develop faster.  So next week's appointment will determine how much longer I need to do the drops.

So there you go.  I have to keep wearing my glasses.  But since my eyes are dilated and we have to go to a movie, I put my contacts in so I can wear my regular sunglasses.  Then I'll be back in glasses for a bit longer.  Until next time...

Monday, August 6, 2012

It Was A Frisbee.

Remember the Brady Bunch episode when Marcia has a date to a school dance with the hot guy at school and she is so excited and then her brothers are on the backyard astroturf playing football and Marcia goes out in all her date with a hot guy glory and as she tells her brothers it's time to come in the football connects with Marcia's nose and she goes down saying "Oh my nose, my nose"?  Remember that?  Well that's what last night felt like.  But not quite how it went. 

We were at Daniel's sister's house for dinner and talking.  The kids were jumping on the trampoline and playing frisbee.  Adults were sitting in small groups talking.  I was talking to my sister in law, 2 nieces and a new future nephew in law.  All of a sudden a black frisbee comes flying at me and I see it actually hit my eye ball.  Yep.  I see it.  I go down saying "oh my eye, my eye" and thinking of blindness and no date with a hot guy on Friday night.  But I can't go on the date with the hot guy anyway because Friday night is the goat show, so I think, hey maybe we won't be in the goat show because I'll be blind.  Daniel is there in an instant and I reach up to touch my eye.  My eyeball is not in its usual spot though.  It's deep inside my head.  Like touching my brain deep.  Then I realize my contact is in there somewhere too.  So I get it out and Daniel takes me into the house to assess the blindness, I mean damage.  All the while my nephew is saying "I'm so sorry aunt Jennie.  I'm so sorry.  I'm not playing frisbee anymore!"

As we walk up the stairs and into the house I try seeing out of my eye.  I can't see.  Everything is a blur.  I know I'm going blind.  Dang!  We get in and I wash it with cool water and say again that I can't see.  Then Daniel suggests maybe I can't see because my contact is out?  Oh.  Yes.  He's right.  I look at my contact and see the black smudge from the black frisbee and know it got me with my eye open. OuCh!  We got my contact cleaned up and put back in so I could see.  But my eye is throbbing and obviously scratched up.  I left the bathroom and cried and cried.  What a baby!  Oh yeah, I just got a frisbee in the eye.  We came home and I was down for the night.

This morning my eye is a little swollen on the outside and swollen on the inside.  The bottom of my eyeball is bruised.  I can't wear my contacts.  It hurts to move it and bright light really hurts.  I called my diabetes eye doctor and have an appointment in the morning to make sure there isn't any permanent damage.  Hopefully I don't go blind before then.  I have to see a different doctor and I'd like to see what he looks like. So please pray for me that I don't go blind.  At least until I see the doctor.  I'll let you know how it goes.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

How Dry I Am...

Thirsty?  Today marks 8, count 'em, 8 weeks since I stopped drinking soda, ergo facto, I stopped taking in caffeine.  Here's how it all went down.  One day, earlier that week I had drop offs for Ruthie's kid's camp and my day was beginning early and going going going all day.  So I began with a quick can of diet pepper before leaving home.  After dropping kids off in Ogden I stopped at Maverick and invested in an extra large diet pepper/diet coke mix.  Yum.  Trust me.  Then lunch time came and I was done with the extra large yum.  So I ran through the Mcyucky drive thru where you can grab a large diet coke for $1.  Done.  Then I finished the rest of the day with 2 more cans of diet pepper.  So you see, I realized I had a problem. Ya think?! So that Friday night, while Daniel and I were out to dinner and I was drinking my recently refilled glass of diet something or other, I decided it was time.  Time to quit.  The difference with this time would be carbonation in general.  In so doing I would be letting go of the diet stuff which includes caffeine and carbonation.  And then there's the NutraSweet.  And as a result I would be off of the nightly tradition of sleeping pills.  Ready?  GO! 

So Saturday morning, June 9, I began.  Or ended.  No more soda.  I had a migraine for about a week.  Oh I was bad off.  But I didn't go back.  After about a week I tried bed without a sleeping pill.  Check!  I did it.  Since then I have only taken the sleeping pills while camping. Necessary!  Trust me. In exchange for the soda/carbonation/caffeine I have taken on a new slew of drinks.  Here they are.  In no particular order.  SoBe drinks.  Yum.  The cheap version of Crystal Lite with Stevia instead of NutraSweet.  And, of course, water.
Now I feel I need to clarify.  I did have a diet something on our trip.  Just with lunch.  It doesn't do it for me.  So I continue on.  I also don't feel "better" since leaving all the "evil" behind.  I do feel more tired, though.  No taking on a caffeinated diet something to get through the afternoon.  But I know I'll sleep when I go to bed.  I also don't guarantee the longevity of it.  8 weeks is staggering.  And my plan is to keep going.  But if I'm out to lunch a have a diet caffeineted something, don't worry, it's just a drink.  And won't be happening on a regular basis.  But don't quote me on that.

What Did You Do Last Night?

I grew up close to a drive in theater.  We went once in a while.  One memorable time was right after I got my driver's license and my sister and I went by ourselves in the big white van to see a Michael J Fox movie.  We've been 10 minutes away from a drive in since we've lived here. We've never taken the kids, though.  So last night we got our pillows and blankets and treats and then picked up some pizza and root beer and headed to the drive in.  The kids got settled in inside the Durango and Daniel and I set up camp chairs outside. 
We saw Ice Age Continental Drift and Brave.  We didn't get home until close to 1 am, so we are tired and cranky today.  Here are 2 of my kiddos walking to the bathrooms.  Sam's the one in the snow boots.  We believe in being prepared.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012


It finally happened.  I never expected it to.  But it did.  My salt container became empty.  So I headed down to the food storage room.  And it happened.  No Salt.  At All.  In all of my vast food storage I have neglected the salt.  In all of my 41 years on earth and in my 13 years of running a household, I have always had salt.  Until now.
So I ran to the store and bought some more. 
 It was just strange that I had actually run out.  Have you ever been out of salt?