Decisions, Decisions!

(Not what I'm really posting about, but......  without going into gross details, my hubby has seen a urologist. He kept putting off getting some of the necessary tests done, but kept having problems.  Last night before bed, I heard him say, "Oh look! There's a kidney stone! I thought I didn't feel great this morning!".  So, I nagged him into getting the blood work done at least today, and I drove his bagged kidney stone to his doctor's office for testing. They were impressed with the size and that it was "stacked".  Yew! Yew! and Yew!) Moving on.......

Grant's school year is almost complete. Just about a week left. Making decisions regarding your children is always difficult, and Eric and I have made decisions regarding school year by year. Allyson has done very well with homeschooling. Her grades have improved; she's a much happier child and has more time to devote to learning Chinese, guitar, and just being a kid.  Our involvement with the homeschool co-op has been terrific for her. So that being said, Allyson is homeschooling again next year.

Jake? Well, he's heading into kindergarten, but I'm not ready to give him up yet. I also think that considering he has only known us a year of his life, another year to be home with family will be a good thing for him. I'm hoping it will aid to solidify the idea of permanency in the family as well.  Homeschooling also allows us to move at his pace and go back to re-explain or re-teach as necessary.

The hardest decision was what was going to be good for Grant. He loves school. However, teaching him at home would allow him to move at his pace (he is a quick learner).  We miss him when Allyson, Jake, and I go here and there, have field trips, etc. and he's not with us. It's a bummer. I also see how close I am with Ally and Jake, and how close they are with each other. I believe it is due to how much time they spend together.  I would like that for all three of my kids. Grant will be attending the Thursday class program with Allyson (different classes, obviously).  I don't have his confirmation letter yet, but if he gets all the classes he wants, he will be able to take a Kung Fu class in the morning. That sold him. 

When I have confirmation on all their classes, I'll have to post. I'm pretty excited about how they will be learning and what they will be learning! 

So, yes! I will be homeschooling all three kiddos. I'm sure some of my friends and family who thought we were on the verge of crazy are calling for the straight jackets now! LOL 

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He's A Graduate!

 Jake graduated from Pre-K tonight. When you attend a bitty preschool with only 3s and 4s, you get a full fledged ceremony! I love the Episcopal church that the preschool is held at. It is so beautiful with a little center aisle. I'm a Baptist gal, and usually our churches aren't as intricate or quaint!  


I know, right? They're so handsome! 


Jake sped down the aisle so the pic isn't the best. But, he walked down the aisle with this cheesy grin on the whole way!



He's quite the singer you know. AND he can play a mean kazoo! 


This is his bow to the audience when he went up to get his diploma.


To think, there used to be only two. Can't imagine life without Jake. He's accomplished so much in only a year. 


Eric put me in the pic, which, actually is pretty nice considering I don't have a ton of pics with my mom and me!


The Fam!


This is dear Mrs. W. She has taught all three of my kiddos in her preschool so this picture is pretty special. 


Grammy brought over a graduation present that was a bank that counted coins. Jake was super excited about the coins and was hoping he had enough for bubble gum! We used to call this the "Kazakh squat" when Grant did it all the time. This we should changed it to the "Asian squat".  Both boys can sit like that and play or watch tv. OUCH!

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College or Braces?

I had a consultation with our orthodontist today for Grant. I realize he is young (only 8), but there are some major issues to address in that mouth! We have to correct a bit issue that is grinding down the back teeth to next to nothing and causing the upper right side of his teeth to protrude out. His jaw is actually not set correctly so much so that our doctor re-examined his X-rays looking for an old jaw fracture. He know Grant's history and know that we do not have any real medical information on him prior to our custody. There was no evidence of any fracture, but GOOD GRIEF, I wasn't expecting that. 

I think I heard our bank account dwindling and crying when he said, "In all my 38 years, I've only seen three cases similar to this!".  Well, that's just great. So my baby of 8 years will be getting a full set of braces with lots of bands including a specially made plastic piece covering part of the braces on one side trying to prevent anymore deterioration. He will no longer be able to bite completely down on the right side of his mouth with that piece in. After this treatment of about a year, he will move on to a retainer until his mouth matures some. Then?  

Another set of braces! This kid better work on his calculus skills, chess, skills, soccer skills, and math skills because he's going to need a few scholarships to go to college. His college fund has turned into his orthodontia fund!

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Sunday Snapshot: Springtacular Soccer!

 The girls played the Springtacular tournament today. They fought hard....


Once they were warmed up, they played aggressively and played 4 games of 3 vs 3 (no goalie). 



Let's see how many colors she's actually wearing: Orange, green, blue just in her hair alone; red shirt; black shorts; neon yellow shoe laces; and purple fingernails. 

She's flashy like that


This is the "Mom, get a life" look that some many of us are familiar with!


Notice Coach got a few colors in his hair thanks to the girls!


We only won one game so there was some comforting going on!


Miss Priss ran hard! Go Ally Go!


Keep that ball!


She's not intimidated by size


'cause she can run circles around them!


And she's tough and can hold her own when the girls start using "shoulders" and bodies to tackle! Sheesh! Girls can be tough!


This isn't the best photo, BUT it's my girl getting one of her 
THREE  G-O-A-L-S!!!!


We've won 1st place at this tournament since we joined soccer (which has been a few years).  The girls didn't make it into the finals and were very disappointed. Ally was really only disappointed because she said that the trophies this year were cute! Can't be a winner every year. One more big tournament coming up in two weeks. Allyson finished up her school year this past week so her summer has officially started. Jake ends his school year this Wednesday. If only Grant could finish his up quickly so we all would be home!


Sunday Snapshot


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In Remembrance

My Grandmother passed away -- my dad's mom.  She was married to my grandfather for over 60 years! 
And she was a mom to five kids. What I always thought was cool was that she decided she was going to learn to drive and get her license later in life. I believe she was in her late 60's early 70's!  I'm not sure I would have the gumption to learn such a task that late in life. That's pretty cool.

Especially praying for my Grandpa as I cannot imagine how hard it is to lose a soulmate after so many years. 
I know her husband, her children, and our family will all see her again! 

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The Case of the Missing Glove

Eric's baseball glove went missing on Monday. It was in the dugout at Grant's game while Eric was helping coach. It was no where to be found after the game. They looked in every boy's bag and asked everyone around hoping that someone mistakenly thought it was there. 

Eric thinks some kids probably went into the dugout and took it because some other things were missing as well. 

Who steals a dad's ball glove while the dad is out helping coach his kid! REALLY?

Let me just tell you....Eric plays catch with Grant almost everyday. There aren't too many days that they don't play. In fact, Grant is usually waiting at the door with his glove, Eric's glove, and a ball so that he can ask Eric to play the second he walks in the door. Eric has spent countless hours working his and Grant's glove to get a great "pocket".   My oven now has an odd smell since Eric had been "cooking" the gloves with something on them. And yet, some goofball took my husband's glove. Really, he took away something from both Eric and Grant that they love doing so much, 

And THAT is what makes me soooo mad!

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Proof that he CAN fly a Fei Jie!

 Jake had a field trip to a local airport today.  We have several small airports in our area. I've been to this one a couple of times and I think it's so cool. Jake always told us that he could "drive anything"! He told us in English and in Chinese. Funny thing is, I really think he was SURE he could fly or drive anything. That's a scary thought right there considering how much trouble this kid can find himself in. 

Today, he "proved" he could fly.




Here he is showing me he can fly on the flight simulator.

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Sunday Snapshot: Arthritis Walk 2011

Despite the drizzly day, we walked a 5K yesterday at the Arthritis Foundation Walk.  Heather's Helping Hands raised $1,529!  

We started the day off with Jazzercise. ( I didn't 'cause I'm a party pooper).
Work it, girls!




My mom actually raised the most of any walker with a total of $1034!


This is how Omi walked (my mom-in-law)! How nice, right?






Jake headed to the Children's Museum with Poppy.  He loves that place. 



Lunch afterward was yummy! Jake is practicing his writing. Kindergarten, here we come!



Thanks to everyone who participated and donated! I sincerely appreciate it.






Sunday Snapshot






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I'm still Here

Blogger is having issues. I lost my last post just tellin' ya'll that I'm still here and Grant lost a shoe. I searched his room and found matchbox cars and undies,  but no shoe. Stuff like that, but way more witty! 

You're just gonna have to trust me 'cause I'm not writing it out again! 

We are walking tomorrow rain or shine! And we are $75 away from first place! 

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Sunday Snapshot: Happy Mothers Day!

Happy Mother's Day Everyone! 

Happy Mother's Day to Omi, my mom-in-law who raised an amazing son and even taught him how to hem his own pants (not that he does it, but he know how. Bonus points for mom-in-law!)

And, Happy Mother's Day to my Momma! I took these pics yesterday and just love them. My mom loves my kids just as much as I do! Thank you, Mom! I love you tons!!!








Ni Hao Yall

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Our Youngest Artist

We have very talented and artistic children. Yesterday while getting the kids ready for bed, I found some lovely impressionistic art work on my toilet seat. I guess "you know who" just decided to work with a new medium.  After explaining what lying is and what the consequences of lying are, I asked him if he did it. His reply was, "Well, If I tell you, I'm gonna be in trouble!". 

He did confess to the graffiti and got to clean a toilet before bed. I explained as he was cleaning that he could not write on toilets, walls, floors ----  he chimed in, "Or blocks, Mom!".  Hmmm, wonder if the Guggenheim is interested in some contemporary art work using the famous building block medium? 

This isn't our only artist. I discovered that Grant knew how to write his name when he was barely three years old. I walked into the playroom one day and discovered large two foot letters across the carpet. It said:

G R A N T

He did it in crayon, and after he cleaned it up, I had nice clean carpets! 

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Ally's New Boss

Grant's chores after school were to clean the half bathroom and empty the dishwasher. He talked Allyson into cleaning it all for him so he could "play longer".  Allyson is now working for Grant. Her pay? $4.00

All kids are happy.
We raise smart kids around here.

At the present time, if you ask my kids want they want to be when they grow up, Allyson will say an architect; Jake will say an Indian (but he means a soldier), and Grant will say that he is going to be a dog catcher.  The funny thing is that Grant brought up the point that Jake would get "shot at".   However, Jake immediately told Grant that he would use a real gun to shoot the bad guys, but the bad guys would use pretend guns.  Doesn't sound like a fair fight to me!

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There's no Cryin' in Baseball!

How many coaches does it take to coach a team?   Well,  if you're going by my son's team, it would be a ratio of 3:1.   Yes, that's one coach for every three boys.  One child actually has his stepdad AND his dad. That's kind of impressive if you ask me.  One of our "coaches" was teasing the other team's coach saying, "What? Can't you get your kids to tuck in their shirts?".  The opposing team's coach replied, "Well, I'm only one guy. We don't have a coach for every kid like you guys!".  



At least you can't complain that our dad's aren't involved parents. However, I cannot tell you how many times I have heard the saying, "There's no cryin' in baseball" already this season. 

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Wordless Wednesday: Boys of Summer











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Arthritis Walk Coming Quickly!

My Arthritis Foundation Walk is coming up quickly on May 14. Thought I'd just fill you all in on how much my team has raised. My Team is Heather's Helping Hands and we have raised....


drum roll please......

$725.00 Big Ones!

We've done a great job, but haven't quite met our goal of $1000.00.  I'm sure we can get there, too! My mom, Deborah, is actually the second highest fundraiser and my team is in second place! Wa-hooo!!!

If' you'd like to join my team or give a buck or two, just click on my "Heather's Helping Hands" link.

BTW<  I'm wondering why my comments are not coming into my inbox anymore so that I can reply to comments? I have made sure the correct setting are in place, but no luck. Anyone else  having this problem?   Anyway, please don't think I'm rude. I just cannot reply to comments anymore. Hmph!

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Confessions of an RA survivor: Nineteenth Anniversary with Rheumatoid Arthritis

I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis nineteen years ago this May.  For some reason, I always remember this anniversary.  It's a marker for me personally to see how far I've come and where I'm going. This post is really just for me to remember and ponder ~ Just my thoughts on paper.  

RA will not beat me.
I may lose a battle, but not the war.
It has taken my hands, my wrists, my knees, my feet.
It has affected my lungs, my bones, my ability to fight everyday infections.
It has taken my time away from my children, my family,  and my husband.
It has taken my joy away at times. It has made me sad sometimes.
BUT,  RA will no defeat me.
No matter what. 
Because I have the victory in the end whether that is today or fifty years from now.
It has given me pain everyday for the last 19 years.
It has taken the normalcy out of my life and caused me to find a new normal regularly.
RA has caused me to take a different path,  a different road,  a road that is "less traveled" (thank you Robert Frost)


 I have friends who love me and help me.
I have family who loves me, helps me, supports me, and comes when I call.
I have a mom and dad who help whenever and wherever I need it.
I have a mother and father in law that are loving, kind, supportive in so many ways,  and love me despite my issues.

I have a husband who has no problem with carrying up the stairs, nursing me after surgeries, can change a surgical dressing like a pro, can whip up a meal in a pinch,  who helps me in and out of the tub after surgeries every night because he knows I can't sleep without it, ties my shoes on tough days, loves me despite my illness and disablities. 
AND HE STILL THINKS I'M PRETTY!   Crazy love, right?

I have three kids!  Enough said, but you know me.....can't stop there. THREE....count them! I'm still in amazement God gave me three of those precious souls. 
They're helpful, good, sweet, funny,  obedient (most of the time) kids who love me despite my disease. They love me even when I cranky with them for no reason because I'm in pain. 

I am not a victim. I may be a survivor but never a victim. 
RA will not beat me because  I am determined and stubborn. I do not give up easily. I like my independence too much.

You see, RA can take things away from me.  It's like the Dr. Jekyll side of me that I can't get rid of. Like a roomate that I can't kick out. 

 But I have so much; so many blessing in my life that it will not take from me. That's how I beat it. That's how I rationalize it. That's how I settle in my mind after 19 years of holding on to a chronic illness. Because if part of me stays annoyed with it, I stay determined and stubborn. And, yes, stubbornness and determination is indeed a quality.

Nineteen years is only a marker; kind of like a pause in the struggle to make sure I haven't given up or accepted it. You don't ever really have to accept a disease. You just have to learn to live with it. You have to keep the monster quiet so it interferes as little as possible. Some days, that's just pushing it back to the farthest part of your mind; some days it's getting down right angry; sometimes it's just looking back at your victories and not the battles you've lost. 

 So here's to the ugly roomate in my life....Rheumatoid Arthritis.  Here's to nineteen years of marriage to RA that I never asked for.  And here's to the next nineteen years. 


Sunday Snapshot


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