Brownie Updates

Brownie Updates
this is the life

Sunday, December 6, 2015


 Here are some other pictures I want to remember and kind of remind me of what my daily life looks like. Moki and I have been hiking quite a bit. One Saturday in October we hiked/ran Stewart Falls. It was a gorgeous day.
Moki likes to lay on top of me while I read. Really???? She would never do that as a puppy. Sometimes I need comforting.
 There is a puppy barn in American Fork. You can go and just hold all the different puppies. So much fun.
 I got to babysit Andrew and Emerson. Sam and Amanda came to drop them off and as soon as they got to my house Andrew said' "Ok mom and dad you can leave now." Sam replied' "The feeling is mutual kid." So funny. Apparently three is his age for mischief.
 We had a fun night and both boys did great!
There have been some amazing sunsets in the evenings on the Y.

 It has only snowed once. LAME! I want some real snow so I can snowshoe.
My fridge died so I had to get all new appliances in my kitchen. It has been fun. Now I just need to paint in there. Oh and get rid of the microwave on the counter.

This has been such a hard month and a half but there has still been so much good in it. I am so thankful for family and friends and the love I have been shown as I have been so sad.

At the beginning of October I bought Sheri Dew's new book Amazed By Grace on CD. I listened to it four times before I went home for my Dad's surgery. Mainly because I realized I do not understand grace. Not even a little bit. I can report that I have learned a little about grace since then. I recognize that because of the grace I have been able to function. Go to work, exercise, do the bare minimum of my calling, attend the temple, laugh, smile, and live. Part of mortality is sickness and death but that does not make it easy, or less sad, or less scary. I am grateful I have a savior to rely on during challenges that are hard. I am not perfect at relying on him but I am trying to be better and I am grateful I have witnessed a little bit of grace the past month.

Thanksgiving and California Again

Originally I was not going to go home for Thanksgiving but since my dad was still really sick Dan and I decided to head that way. Then the weather didn't cooperate and so I stayed here. My aunt Loralie is a saint. He married kids were all gone for Thanksgiving but she still hosted which meant me and all my brothers had a place to go. So nice of her!!! It was a fun and pretty easy day. I don't have any pictures but we ate, played games, and visited. I was really really grateful for my family this year!

That night I just realized I really needed to go home. I needed to see my dad and support my mom. So I bought a way overpriced plane ticket and headed to California on Friday. Aaron and Jacklyn picked me up at the airport and we went straight to the hospital. Seeing my dad was so hard. He now had all the water weight off of him. He had been in bed four three and a half weeks and so he has lost all his muscle. His arms and face are so skinny. He was awake but couldn't talk because of the trach. But he would look at us and move his arms and try really really hard to talk to us. It was so so hard to see. It's all part of getting better but you could just tell he was so frustrated. He also wanted to go home which obviously is not an option at this time. I just felt really bad for him. And he was still on life support so he was still really really sick.

It was a really quick trip. I am glad I went. It was good to see him even though it was emotionally so hard. But how cute our my niece and nephew???
 We did skype with these two from the hospital and they made my dad laugh and smile which was so great to see. They are really into knock knock jokes. Forgot how annoying those can be:)
 I had them make funny faces so I could show my dad the pictures. Kids are the best when times are tough. Just love these two!
My mom and I did a little dress shopping. She needs a dress for Aaron's wedding. We didn't find anything. Adrianna and Olivia came with us. They wanted to see the temple so we made a quick stop there after.
 My family has a ton going on right now. My dad is a major concern but Aaron is getting married in January. That is coming up really fast. It has already been a stressful month and I don't think things are going to calm down until after the wedding. Here is to hoping there isn't stress when my birthday rolls around.

My dad is now off of life support. He can communicate. He has a very very long road ahead of him. He has to learn/get strong enough to sit-up on his own and just move, but one day at a time. His body is slowly coming around and functioning on it's own. The doctors were shocked on November 30th at the progress he had made over the weekend. This week has continued to do better. I think the staff thinks he might live. He is still very sick but they think that he has turned the corner. Of course he got MRSA, a staph infection that is dangerous, but so far it isn't giving him grief. Prayers and fasting are continually being sent his way. Love that guy so much.

Andrews Birthday

This post is out of order. Lesson learned, don't wait a month and half before updating your blog. BLAH! Andrew had a birthday in October. For his birthday I wanted to spend time with him and let him pick out a present.

We went to temple square. I really wanted to see the big model of the Salt Lake temple so this was a selfish stop. The model is awesome so if you have a chance go see it!

Andrew is so fun and easy to spend time with.
 He used to not eat very much. So I thought we could share some fries. This kid started taking two fries at a time once he realized we were sharing. Little punk.
 It was a gorgeous fall day in Salt Lake.
 Caleb came with me. I let him carry Andrew when he got tired.
 Andrew picked out a toy from the Disney store. It was fun to hang out with him.

That evening we went to Amanda's orchestra concert. Emerson was not a fan. So I spent a lot of time with him in the hall. And conquered the bathroom with him in tow. I was pretty proud of myself. Not a big deal to all my mom friends I am sure.
 I think this is the only time he smiled because he was seriously grouchy most the evening.
Luckily he is so cute! It was a Saturday well spent.

Another trip to California

The Tuesday night before my Dad's surgery I didn't get any sleep. I laid in bed and was just worried and anxious. I had decided not to go home because it was a routine valve replacement. We have known for years he would need this surgery. While it is open heart surgery it is pretty routine now days. I tried to really figure out what I was feeling and in then end I knew I needed to be there for the surgery. I am so glad I listened to that prompting!

Aaron, my parents, and I had to leave Palermo for Sacramento at 3:30 in the morning. They prepped my Dad for surgery and we got to meet his doctor and send him off. You could tell my Dad was nervous but at this point it was really the only option to prolong his life. I still remember him grabbing Aaron's hand as he was being wheeled away. It was like he was pleading with us, wishing he didn't have to do it. 

His surgery went as planned. It was on November 3rd. The doctor was coming out and telling us everything was great and then he got a phone call from surgery and the code blue came on the speaker. As the doctor had been talking to us the surgical team was getting him set up in ICU. They went to move him to the ICU bed and his heart stopped. The doctor ran back in. Did CPR. Couldn't get his heart started and so they opened his chest back up and massaged his heart and then it started again. SCARY!!!!!

They got him situated but they left us hanging not knowing what was happening for another hour and a half.  The doctor met with us in a room and let us know what had happened. That his chest was still open because of his lung pressure. They also informed us he would be kept in a medically induced coma for now. And that we could see him in a few minutes.

We went in and saw him and it was just really awful. He looked really gray. And really sick. You couldn't see into his chest cavity because it was covered but it was still open. His body was still being re-heated from the surgery. We could only see him for a few minutes and so then we headed out for the evening. It had been a really really long day. My mom and I stayed the night in Sacramento and Aaron headed back to Chico.

The whole week of surgery kind of all blurs together but it seemed like all we got was bad news. His heart was struggling, his lungs were really struggling, his kidneys were not wanting to work correctly. It was really really stressful and really really emotional.

Luckily we got to visit some really cute kids to try and take our mind off of the fact that our Dad was in a hospital literally fighting for his life.
I only took one picture the whole trip and it was of this beauty.

On Thursday my mom and I decided to go back to Palermo to sleep. We couldn't do anything at the hospital. He wasn't awake and we couldn't be in the room very long. We spent Friday doing yard work and cleaning and then headed to Sacramento for a visit. I remember walking into the room and being like why is my dad so huge. His body had rejected a medicine and he had 40lbs of water on his body as a result. He looked so so sick. That made it even harder to see him.

Originally I had planned on heading back to Utah on Friday but because of the situation I stayed in town until Sunday, as long as I could. I was just hoping they would wake him up before I went home. In the end it didn't happen. They did close his chest on Friday. Which was goos and bad. Bad because they accidentally pulled out his ventilator and trach tube at the same time and his heart stopped again. WHAT THE HECK! But they got it going again. Saturday night I said an emotional good bye not really knowing if I would ever see my Dad alive again. It SUCKED!!!! I left my mom Sunday morning and was grateful I only had Moki in the car with me. I could think and cry as much as I needed to.

The next week I am amazed I got through work. I was so exhausted emotionally and physically. I don't think I did much else because I was so sad. Nothing really changed until the end of the second week and my Dad slowly started to open his eyes. He was still really unresponsive but there was life in there! I learned that anesthesia is really just lots and lots of pain medicine. As they weened him off the pain medicine he slowly started to wake up.

On Monday November 16th we had another scare. His heart stopped in the early morning. They got it going again but for a while it didn't look too great. He got a priesthood blessing, lots of prayers and fasting, and he made it through the day. They think they just weaned him off of his heart medicine too fast. Unfortunately they had to give him more medicine so that meant more coma time for him. After that Monday he slowly started to improve. I Facetimed with my Aunt Virginia while she was with him and he smiled and nodded his head. He was slowly starting to progress.


My least favorite holiday. I was actually a little more excited this year because I loved my costume.
 Sadness from Inside Out!

My classes did some pumpkin activities for Halloween. We tossed them like medicine balls. Luckily none of them were dropped!
We did some shuttle runs.
We did some core strengthening activities.
 And then I taught them the Monster Mash. I don't dance people.....but this is a way easy dance and it was sooooo fun to do. It was a great day in PE! And this wasn't even Halloween. If Halloween is on Saturday you dress up on Friday. That doesn't even make sense.

My work people!
 Trying to be sad.
 It was a fun day. On actual Halloween I did my traditional evening of hanging out with Jana and passing out candy. Wish I had some pictures of that. It was good times as always.

Fall Break

Fall break happened way back in October. Anthony, Nancy and I decided to head to California for the long weekend. We hung out in Oroville and Lodi and spent lots of time with family. My Dad was scheduled to have heart surgery at the end of the month and so I wanted to make sure I got out there. Man looking back I am so glad I did.

It was close to Olivia's birthday and so I let her pick out a present. She choose an Elsa castle. It's a lego thing. We also picked out some Legos for Braxton. We spent the evening putting them together. I learned that legos require a lot of patience. Actually Olivia did great. Braxton is underage for the project we were doing and he didn't have the patience to sit and let us do it. As soon as it looked like the batmobile that child was ready to play. I let him and I finished it after he was in bed. Auntie for the WIN!

Bubba started off excited. He loves batman.

 It was a fun way to spend the evening without any media for entertainment.

We also went to the fish hatchery. It was still 90 degrees in Oroville. Before this we had gone to Riverbend park and the kids and Moki were playing in the river. I just let them wear their swimsuits all day.

 These two kids are so fun. It was great to spend time with them. On the way back to Lodi Olivia stole Anthony's hat. She is so cute. She is holding the present my parents let her pick out.
 We also spent sometime in Lodi. We made yummy caramel apples.

 It was a quick trip but I am glad we went. We helped my Dad get the tarp on the trailer and do some other things that are just to hard for him right now. He was really struggling to get enough oxygen. He could not walk very far or do much without having to take breaks. He was already in heart failure at this time. It's really hard to watch your parents struggle with their health, especially someone who was always been so strong and healthy.

Saturday, October 10, 2015


The school asked if I wanted to go on an overnight trip to Clear Creek with some students. I don't know why I got to go but I said yes! It was so fun. The district owns some cabins in the mountains up by Schoffield and we went up there for one night. I had a great time with the students and the other teachers. It was seriously so fun. It was also very beautiful.
 Fall is coming finally.

We took the kids fishing on the way back to the school. They caught 24 fish. So fun! I got to enjoy the beautiful scenery.
 The kids had a great time fishing.
 The weather cooperated and it was just a great day.
 We went on Tuesday and Wednesday. Wednesday and Thursday were parent teacher conferences and then Thursday I also work at the temple. It was a pretty crazy week.

This morning Moki and I ran in the family fun run put on by the community where I teach. It is an annual run and very fun. I think I have only missed one year since it started. It is for the Make A Wish foundation. Such a great cause. Moki is in heaven when we run in 5K's, most don't allow dogs so this is a favorite. It was a beautiful morning for a run.
People kept asking me is Moki was tired. People are funny. No the dog is not tired but I sure am. She wasn't even breathing hard. DOGS!

Picture catch up

September is gone and October is here and going fast. Does life ever slow down? It has been a crazy start to the school year but I am having a great year. I love love love my job. There are days when I am stressed or annoyed but my theme this year has been I love this job, I love these kids. I am not a perfect teacher but I am trying to be better everyday. I am blessed to work at a great school with great faculty and students. Outside of school I have been busy with family, trying to exercise, my calling, and my temple shift. There really is a lot going on.

My brothers came in and woke me up one Saturday night super late. Anthony was living here at the time. Moki was thrilled to see them, me not so much.
 I made a quilt for Emerson. I was happy with how it turned out.
 Dinner with my brothers usually means that I have to censor the conversations and refrain from laughing at their inappropriate comments and jokes. Why don't boys ever grow up?????
 Emerson is so stinking cute. He is interacting more and more. Just love his sweet face.
 I spent a small fortune and printed off lots of pictures for my house and school. Guys I have done some awesome stuff the past few years. It is easy to forget everything I have done. I love having the pictures up to remind me.
I changed the rocks in my fish tank and I love the contrast with blue rocks.
 I watched general conference like this because Anthony had a serious gas problem. Dude go use the bathroom. General conference was awesome the smell I dealt with not so much.
Halloween is coming up. Look at these cuties. They melt my heart.
 This costume is so soft. I seriously just wanted to snuggle Andrew the entire time he was wearing it.
 And Emerson is just cute as ever.
 I love the idea of themed costumes. These two siblings are adorable.
 Look at the saddest face ever. Sam put him in his car seat to come over for conference breakfast and this was the face he got. What??? I was like that is too bad get over here we are starving.
 I got to watch Emerson and Andrew last night because it was Sam and Amanda's wedding anniversary. Don't let this smile fool you he had a good 20 minutes of screaming. Let's just say I tried to watch a youtube video to tie the moby on me because he loves it, I still can't figure it out but it was enough to calm him down but I still had to to support him with both hands.
 Two is way harder than one. Andrew checking out my fish. He better check them out he is the reason I got the stupid things.
 Love snuggling this boy!


Amber and I decided we needed a weekend away. We debated for awhile on where to go. In the end Moab was a great option for us. I could bring...