Thursday, September 2, 2010

Tessa's First Day of Preschool!

She came in at 7:00 this morning grinning from ear to ear telling us it was time to leave for school! There were some kids crying. There were some moms crying too. However, we were all smiles. :)

I went to the gym and didn't check someone into child care - it was so nice!
Ted had a little harder time - can you see him reaching back for her hand? Her reply was, "no, I'm big. I don't need to hold hands." It was funny and heartbreaking all at the same time.

As I was driving I reminded myself to "memorize" this moment, because they go by so quickly - our baby is growing up!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Wagner Family Reunion at Brianhead

This year we had the Wagner family reunion at the Adams' cabin in Brianhead, Utah. It was beautiful. It was so fun to see everyone, and watch the cousins interact together. We played games, ate smores the size of your head, rode four-wheelers, did crafts, ate great food, talked, read, and played some more. It was fabulous!

Here are all the cousins in the posed picture.

Here they are showing more of their personalities as we tried to get another picture!

At the top of the mountain - it was cold, so we got out long enough to take a picture and then rushed back to the car - yes, we are wimps.

Crafts in the afternoon.

Playing the cotton ball game (and praying that nobody fell as they ran full speed without watching where they were going).
The Oreo game (Note howTessa skipped the game part and went straight to the
cookie eating part!)

Holding the pinata for all the kids - probably the safest place around given how some of the kids (and grandparents) were wildly swinging the bat around. :)

Don't worry - she DID manage to get that entire thing in her mouth (and on her face, and on her shirt, and on her pants,....)

Sam spent more time on these four-wheelers than anywhere else. He LOVED them, and he would wander from person to person until someone would agree to go out with him....

until he knew we were making smores.
The front entry way - a happy sign of all of us being together.

Thanks for a wonderful reunion! It was FANTASTIC!!

Sweet Sammy & Surgery

So, it's over. And we couldn't be more thrilled. Sam doesn't gasp for air anymore. As a matter of fact, he thinks Lincoln is too noisy when he sleeps because he is breathing so loud! When I ask him a question, Sam doesn't turn his head and put his ear towards me and ask me to repeat it. He actually hears me the first time, and we are thrilled. We were so concerned about the breathing thing - and then the hearing frustration was aggravating to us, and especially to him. There were times where it seemed almost normal, but then it would deteriorate again and it would take weeks or months for it to resolve.

The doctor discovered (as I mentioned before in an earlier post) that his adenoids were likely large enough that they were preventing proper drainage from his ears resulting in fluid buildup, ear infections, and scarring which all affected his hearing. It wasn't something that traditional tubes would have fixed (or at least they don't think so), and it wasn't something that hearing aides would have helped.

Hopefully we won't have that problem any more. There still may be some residual hearing loss, but it is minimal, and mainly on one side. He falls within normal limits on his hearing tests -barely within limits on one side - but within normal limits, and we are pleased as punch about this.

His tonsils were so large that he wasn't getting enough air, but then he would go and run in a soccer game, so we didn't know what to make of this. The overnight sleep study showed that his breathing did drop dramatically during the night, so the tonsils needed to come out. Since then his breathing is fine. The doctor said that on a scale of one to five (five meaning that the tonsils completely occlude the airway) his were a size four. I am SO GLAD they are gone!!!

Trying to get Sam to wake up from the anesthesia.

They brought out the tonsils to show us how large they were - that is Ted's hand so that you have some idea of the scale of how large they were.

Sam crashing after surgery on our bed - and Jack keeping him company.
The thing is, Sam was great through the entire process. He didn't complain. He didn't whine. He was just sweet.

A few weeks later I found this note that he had made during that time, and he asked me to deliver it for him. I didn't think much of it and then I thought I needed to open this and see what it was. My heart just melted when I saw what it said.

It says: From: Sam To: The Army Navy
Inside: Check the other side.
On the back of the card he wrote: To the army of United States of America. Thank you for fighting for freedom. (If you have ever heard Sam pray, you know this is a big deal to him.)
When you open the card up he had included $6 of his own money that he worked for, and he wrote: This money is for food.

Sam's little body may have had trouble breathing, and a hard time hearing. But one thing is clear: His heart is as big and strong as ever.

Brace Face!

The day before school Emma went from this:

To this.
She was sore, but happy. Her philosophy was the sooner they are on, the sooner they are off!

Our trip to almost see U2

It is an item on Ted's "bucket list, " so...
Tickets purchased more than six months in advance - check.
Hotel reservations made - check.
Flights booked - check.
Arrangements for kids to be watched while we are gone - check.
Activities planned - check.
Weeks of anticipation and growing excitement (not only for the concert, but also to get away with some good friends and enjoy Seattle!) - check!

Bono falling and needing back surgery and canceling the entire North America tour - What!!!!

Oh well. We decided to go anyway, and it was SO FUN! We had a great time. We rode the ferry, went to the pier, went to a Mariners game, ate at some awesome restaurants, and did some shopping. And the best part? - knowing that we will be going next summer again - this time to see U2!

Mariners game - you can also see that they are halfway through the process of closing the overhead canopy of the field due to rain - pretty amazing.

(Obviously the guys weren't into shopping as much as Gayla and I were, but they made some use of the couches at Restoration Hardware. )

Wrappin' Up Summer

What else did we do all summer? We had our trip to Brianhead. We went to Island Park. We went swimming a lot. We took bike rides. We went to the Natatorium. The boys went camping. However, one of the kids' favorite activies during the summer is going to Snowbird to ride the slide, do the zip line, do rock climbing, and do these trampoline bounce things - I have no idea what they are really called.

They also like to float the Boise River.
I hate this. Every year I dread it like the plague.
I haven't had the best luck floating rivers, and it scares me to death that my kids want to do this - which is crazy, I know. Because, let's face it, the Boise River isn't exactly known as a "whitewater" river. However, I still hate it. Seriously. But they love it so I knew I had to let the kids go. I seriously talked to Ted for about 35 minutes about how nervous I get about this. (Keep in mind, they go every year, but I still freak out.)

Here they are coming to the pull-out point. I see this picture and laugh thinking about how this river represents the "jaws of death" in my mind, but it looks pretty peaceful here. Oh well - they had fun, and I didn't have to go, so it worked out just fine. Until next year when we have this discussion all over again.

Thanks, Troy, for going with Ted (and making it so I didn't have to go!!).

Back to school --WOOHOO!!!!

I can't believe she is in eighth grade. But she is ready. No more is she the lowly seventh grader wandering the halls. Nope - she is familiar with the school, ready to tackle her classes, and eager to wear makeup. (I still haven't conceded to anything more than mascara, but that doesn't stop her from asking.) Man, they grow up fast.

Lincoln and Sam are thrilled about school starting later, it means there is less of a rush this year to get out to the door to the bus. Instead of being to the bus stop by 7:53, they get to stay home until 8:20. In kid world that is awesome -more time to sleep in and dawdle. In mom world that means that there should be no reason that their rooms aren't cleaned and chores done before school. However, it seems that mom world only exists in my mind.

Sam showing me that he is in second grade - no he isn't giving me the "peace" sign.

Lincoln is going into fifth grade. He is excited but nervous, mostly because Emma has been telling him how much homework he will have this year.

Tessa here meeting with her preschool teacher, Mrs. Patricia. Tessa is so excited - her school starts one week after the other kids go back to school.