Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Brand New Times Two!

It seems like hardly any time has passed since my friend Kelly first told me she was pregnant with twins. Time sure goes by quickly! I was awakened on Monday morning at 5:30 am with a text message on my phone saying "they're here!"

Julia Ann and Ava Lauren were born Sunday night around 9:30. Brad and I got to go visit this brand new family of four last night at the hospital. I couldn't stop grinning as I held the babies. It's wonderful to hold them, touch them, see them after praying for all these months. Mama and the girls are doing amazingly well. No complications at all which is awesome considering how tough the pregnancy had been for Kelly.

Here are the pictures! The babies' eyes were still too sensitive to light for us to take any flash photos of their faces, but don't worry, I'll have more pictures soon.

Julia Ann

Ava Lauren

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Great Strides 2008 Fundraising Has Begun!

My team's goal is to raise $7000 for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

GREAT STRIDES: Taking Steps to Cure Cystic Fibrosis is the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation's largest national fund-raising event. Tens of thousands of co-workers, friends and family come together each year as one community for one cause…to help find a cure for CF. In 2007, more than $34 million was raised to support vital CF programs.

Would you like to help?

Donate HERE

I made this widget at

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Then and Now: Resolutions of Sorts

An optimist stays up until midnight to see the new year in. A pessimist stays up to make sure the old year leaves.

--Bill Vaughan

Instead of making the traditional list of New Year's Resolutions that's filled with delusions of grandeur and self-improvement measures, I decided to do something a bit different. I made a little chart on a pad of paper today (okay, so it was the wrapper that my old-fashioned doughnut from $tarbucks came in...) with two columns. The left column I titled "Things I Did in 2007." On the right I wrote "Want to Do in 2008." The object was to take some positive or interesting things about last year, and look for similar things to do this calendar year.

Here's what the resulting list looked like:

Things I Did in 2007

Things I Want to do in 2008

Learned to knit

Learn to waltz

Started lifting weights

Add more weight

Wrote a book proposal

Get the proposal to an editor/publisher

Raised $5000 for CFF Great Strides

Raise $7000 for CFF Great Strides

Unpacked from moving to new home

Organize the guest room and closets

Visited San Francisco

Visit New York or Hawai’i

Here's to a GREAT '08!

Monday, January 07, 2008

Gimli vs. Baggie

Here's a little video I took this afternoon of Gimli trying to get one of his treats. I hid the bag of treats in one of my bunny slippers. Once Gimli finally found them, it was quite amusing watching him wrestle with the bag. Just watch...I think you'll be entertained.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Shall We Dance?

Jennifer Lopez I'm not, and I didn't have nearly the finesse that she had in that movie "Shall We Dance?" I had to summon all my rhythm from my baton twirling days in order to not make a doofus out of myself.

The lesson was not quite what we expected. There must have been 150 people there! They grouped us into beginner, intermediate and advanced, and taught all three groups in the same room. It was very difficult to hear and see what the instructors were doing. I think the part that threw me off the most was that I didn't get to dance with Brad :( They had us all get in a circle, and every time we did the 1-2-3, 1-2-3 we ladies had to switch to the next guy in line. It reminded me of the Mad Hatter's tea party the way we kept switching. Brad and I were by far some of the youngest participants. I think the average age there was at least 65.

Since I struggle with anxiety, being in a room that large, loud and crowded nearly sent me into a tailspin. I was having such a rough time that I asked Brad if we could leave once they started teaching the swing dancing stuff.

Brad and I (mostly I) had to decompress after such a night. I was in a bit of a funk, and frustrated that something that should have been fun had wigged me out. Just a little while ago (it's 11:30 pm here) Brad and I spent some time practicing the steps together. I think I've got it down for the most part. I'll just have to make sure to take my anxiety meds BEFORE the lesson next week!

Still I think we'll get the hang of it. Now that we know what to expect for next time, it won't wig us out so much.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

A Wonderful, Spontaneous Evening

Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don't resist them - that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.

--Lao Tzu

Yesterday the weather was deliciously gloomy and damp, so I donned my new rabbit pajamas and slipper socks and settled into the couch with a nice cup of hot cocoa. This was about 4pm. Around 5 Brad called to say he was leaving work, and asked if he wanted me to have him pick up dinner on the way home. I declined and he said "better yet, do you want to drive up here and meet me at Peking Palace?" I hesitated and confessed that I was wearing snuggly pajamas. I was a bit loathe to have to put on real clothes again. However, after a split-second change of attitude, I told him I'd be willing to change and meet him up there.

Thrusting my newly warmed legs into my now-cold jeans, I let the recognition of what a great husband I have wash over me. Pulling my thickest t-shirt over my head, I smiled at the mirror. We missed our New Year's Eve date, so this was a chance for a do-over. I brushed and spritzed my hair, swiped the lip gloss across my lips, and squeezed my still-slippered feet into a pair of shoes.

The freeway traffic was wonderfully light, and I made it to the restaurant in record time. As I waited for Brad, my heart danced a bit as I thought about how fun it is to date my husband. When he came around the corner wearing the sweater I got him for Christmas, I couldn't help but grin :) Boy of boy, does he look good in that sweater!

The waitress seated us in "our" booth against the far wall. We ordered our "usual" entrees and made light chitchat with the owner, Michelle when she came by. Lemon chicken for me, and kung pao for Brad. 2 orders of egg rolls, and crispy noodles to dip in the sauce. Wonderful and tasty. Just like every time we've been there. We've shared a lot of great conversations in that booth.

Before the meal was over I figured I'd return Brad's generosity and thoughtfulness by suggesting we go to a movie. I've been saying for weeks now that we'd go, and it was time to make good on that. The theater we drove to was in the neighborhood we lived in before we bought our house. It was by far the nicest area we had ever lived in, and in some ways I do miss it a little. While Brad parked the car, I purchased tickets for National Treasure. The movie was great and Brad and I were so glad to have enjoyed a night out.

And yes, I put those bunny pajamas right back on as soon as we got home.

Great Strides Recap

I would like to send out a great big THANK YOU to everyone who helped me reach my Great Strides goal in 2007. Thanks to your generous contributions, not only were we able to meet my goal of raising $5,000, but we EXCEEDED it! We've even got a head start on Great Strides 2008.

In the years past I have been an "angel walker." I have not done the actual walk, (due to cross infection issues) but have raised funds through a letter writing campaign. This year my wonderful husband, Brad, will be strutting his stuff, taking Great Strides on May 17.

To date our personal involvement has raised over $10,000 for much needed CF research. I'm so thankful for everyone who has contributed to the effort. Because of you I look forward to a better future in spite of having CF. God is so faithful, and He has demonstrated that He can in fact do great things in the lives of those who fear and worship Him. I am fully confident that every aspect of my life is meaningful to Him.

Here's to a wonderful 2008!

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