Thursday, November 10, 2011

Here we are again. It's been 3 years!!!

Hank is doing great!

Right after Tom and I found out about Henry's condition, my Mom and Sister Angela packed their bags, jumped in the car, and drove all the way from Raymond(12hrs) to our house in Boise. We were so blessed to have them drop everything to come help us deal with the shock, fear, concern, anxiety, and all the other emotions. Thanks girls. We actually were blessed to have dozens of friends and family give us so much support, but Mom and Ang bought us Rock Band so that's why they got a special shout out. We love that game. Hahaha. The crazy thing is 3 years later we are living across the country, Angela is living with us, and my Mom is here for a visit. Can you believe that? It's like we planned it!
It's nice to have them here to "celebrate" how well Hank is doing TODAY.
He is so much fun. I can't say he is an Angel, but I can say that we love him even more because of all the crazy things that kid accomplishes.
So, to follow tradition, I'm going to say what I've learned this year.
I have decided that what I have really been working on re-learning(because we've all heard it at some point in our lives, most likely too often) is that even though the glass is half empty, I'm going to focus on the half full part.
O.K.- If you read my Blog and thought- "Wow Em is so happy and is having so much fun in Virginia," well, you'd be partially right. Everything I put on the Blog is absolutely the truth. I just choose to leave out the "half -empty" stuff like how I've lived here for almost a year and haven't let myself open up to anyone to really be friends with them. Why? I really can't put my finger on it. I'm sure it means there is something seriously wrong with me, but what-eves right?  Or I could tell you that it takes forever to get anywhere, Tom's commute is 15 minutes of me driving him, followed by a 65 minute train ride, followed by a 5 minute walk(unless leaf oil has anything to say about it). I could, of course go on, but I don't want too. I want to focus on the good stuff.
So to swing this back to Henry, every year he has a ginormous run down of tests. This time he didn't beat all the odds with a few of them. He is showing some signs that he may have trouble controlling his bowels, and bladder. I could go into lots more detail, but I really don't want to dwell on it. He is such a happy little trouper. It isn't bothering him now, and we don't even have to test him again till he's three. The scrapper is running everywhere, he falls all the time, and just gets right back up. I had the physical therapist over and she asked where a certain bruise came from and I seriously had to try hard not to laugh. how can you identify one from the many? One time he fell on one of his little wooden blocks and got a perfect triangle bruise.
O.k. so here is a little up date on the kids personality.
He LOVES Dora!!!!!

"Mom, a Dowa?"

"Daddy a D-o-w-a, a D-O-W-A!"

"Ang, a Dowa?"
"Ga-ma a Do-wa, a Do-wa, a Do-wa...!!!"

Nuff said.

As you can see
Angela and I give him special treatment
cause he is so delicate.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Halloween Happenings!

Happy Halloween.
I called my friend Staci on Halloween and she answered like this-
"Happy Halloween, even though you hate it."
It's true that I hate Halloween. I pretty much stop feeling like myself for two full weeks before it, and feel better right after all the decorations are down.When I was in 8th grade our family suffered a tragedy, I lost my little brother on the 30th and I just can"t quite stop the memories and sorrow from coming back. I think it's just that there are so many traditions that you do for holidays so it triggers memories of that time in my life. Over the years I've realized that if I just allow myself to feel a little "Mel-Un-cho-ly" then I get over it faster. By the way if you don't know why I wrote it that way then you really need to rent the kid movie "Mega Mind" cause it is super funny. Anyways...
Here is what we did this Halloween.
On Friday the kids had a "Wear red to stop bullying."
Nice smile Logan.
 Then on Saturday we went to trunk or treat.
It was actually super nice cause the old boys went by themselves,
Tom took Hank around,
and Lays went around with "The Princess Posse,"
Wish I would have taken my camera for that sight. 
There were about 9 of them 
and once it was done they all huddled in a corner and traded candy.

The theme this year was "Hidden Identity"
Lays totally fits in cause no one knew who Cinderella was at the ball!
It's a bit of a stretch, but I'm proud of it:)
 On Monday we went to the kids class parties.
This is Layla with her friend Lailah on the left.
Pronounced the same way so they call my Layla-
Jay was so excited when he saw me walk into his class. I'm certain he didn't
believe me that I was really going to come. 
Logan was so sweet with Hank.
He made the mistake of letting him out of his stroller so we had to let him walk out of the school cause once that kid is free, he is so not going back into that prison.
I took a video of it and I don't know if you can tell, 
but at the end he totally bonks his face on the hand rail.

Yes, I was counting seconds till he fell, but it was out of love for the little trouper.
He just wants to run everywhere and that was a steep ramp.
Last Sunday he ended up in Logan's class(for a number of reasons),
when I went to get him out he jumped up,
started running,
got snickered at by all the kids,
got back up with his head down(you could tell he was frustrated),
and since he couldn't see it,
ran right into the wall.
Poor kid.
He is just so determined to do everything faster than he probably should.
Monday night we took the kids trick or treating.
Angela is so helpful. She staid home with Hank so Tom and I both got to go with the crazies.

There was a pumpkin shortage on the east coast so we all carved this tiny one.

Today was 80's day
I didn't plan ahead so we just rummaged through the house and created this little gem of an
outfit for Lays. The boys would only do it a little, but I still think they look good considering their
Mother is a slacker:)

p.s. I still need to do the post for when Tom's family was here,
but I need to get the Pics from Tom's cell,
and keep forgetting to get them when he is home.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Still stealing from Staci.

DC: Saturday

(And the blue is still me, Emily.) 

Saturday morning we headed back over to the mall. We stopped by at the Washington Monument even though it is still closed from the earthquake. It is hard to really get an appreciation for how large it is unless you are right up by it! By the way, can you see how PERFECT the weather was for us? 
It was SNOWING back at home! 
(it has rained every day since the Starnes went home)

 Then we headed over to the Air and Space Museum for a couple of hours:

Followed by the Museum of Natural History:

Then we spent some time at the Museum of American History
(Tom and I had to leave them their cause Logan had a football game, but they met up with 
their "rival friends" so all was well)

And that evening we went to a couple of monuments...the Lincoln and the Vietnam War Memorial:

(The kids came with, and proved to be quite a match for Tom, Nate, Staci and me. I swear Nate and Staci saved more than one of my little ones from a number of catastrophes. Thanks guys. I am so lucky to have friends that aren't afraid to say stuff like "HEY JAY, GET OFF THAT LIGHT POST. DO YOU WANT TO FALL, AND GET SMASHED BY A CAR?" 
I'm also super lucky that I didn't have to take them everywhere with us. Why you ask? Well I'm so lucky cause Angela is living with me so she was able to take care of my little crazies lots of the time. She even accomplished a first for her. She changed diapers! Thanks sis. You are wonderful!!!)

Over 56,000 names are on this wall. It is pretty powerful to walk by and see all of those names.  On that somber note, another wonderful and exhausting day came to a close!

DC: Sunday

 Sunday we headed over to Mt. Vernon. It was the perfect activity for a beautiful Sunday. I had an appreciation for Washington before this trip but that appreciation has grown in leaps and bounds after really getting to know the man and all he did for this country.(I started a little behind Staci on the appreciation scale. Shhhh, don't tell, but I had to be reminded that he was the first President. What? I am Canadian! I'm actually going back tomorrow with Tom's folks and Sister Sheena and am excited to learn more)He was a family man, a religious man, an amazing general and President.

(We took the kids again, and like before the Starnes were such a great help. I just loved watching Staci bond with Lays. Every time I looked for Lays she was holding Staci's hand and talking her ear off. I was so sad I didn't get to see the Starnes kids, but it was nice to be able to see Nate and Staci spending time with my kids.)
Later that night the Perry's introduced us to the glorious store.......WEGMAN'S. This isn't just your everyday grocery store. They have a 5 star chef working in there who will whip you up a gourmet meal at your convenience. The pastries and treats were to DIE FOR! We spent over 60 bucks on nothing but TREATS that night! I had died and gone to SWEET heaven.
Em and I were bugging the Wegman's boy at the treat counter. He hooked us up with some sweet hats.
Yeah, we're embarrassing like that. We even had a couple of people ask us for assistance while we were rocking the hats. They thought we worked there!

(I hate this picture. It looks like I have horn-nubs growing out of my head, but I'm keeping it in cause I love how Staci will be a dork with me. She doesn't even seem to do it to humor me, she just is as dorky as me. It is so hard, and special to find a kindred spirit in this world, and Staci is one of mine. Love you)
We had muffins, apple tart, fruit tart, a chocolate flourless cake dome, pumpkin cheesecake and donuts.

DC: Monday...last day!

Sick of my DC wrap up yet? Well too bad! One more to go!
(yay, no kids today!) 
Monday we got up early and went straight to the Holocaust Museum. It was very emotionally draining to see the actual shoes and personal belongings of some of those men, women and children sent to death and work camps. Pictures aren't allowed in the museum so I have no visual documentation of the day but it definitely makes a lasting impression on everyone who enters that museum. It is hard to believe that human beings were capable of such brutality and evilness. Some of the images we saw are pretty much burned into my mind forever. Horrible.  (Truly HORRIBLE)

After the museum we headed up to Baltimore for the rest of the day. Baltimore was SO SO SO much fun! We went over to the National Aquarium, watched a dolphin show, wandered through many different fish and animal exhibits and enjoyed an evening on the docks overlooking the harbor.

Here is the aquarium:
(Wow Staci you are one fantastic photographer!)
(I love the way we posed juxtaposed with the way the boys posed)
(These boys are pure nerdy fun)
(Stac, I am shocked that you forgot to put in the magnet story. It's probably my favorite part of that day. Don't worry I'll tell it for you. - So Stac and I were in the gift shop looking at all the crummy overpriced stuff and came across some magnets.  You had to turn them over to see the price and I noticed that this worker kept going over and fixing them back into rows.  Like he literally followed right behind me the whole time I was looking at them, and was sliding them back into perfect rows.
When we walked away "evil Emily" said -
"Hey Stac, lets go over and move them again." 
She agreed that he needed to be messed with so as soon as he left his post
I started to pretend that I was looking at them, moved like 2 askew, and walked away thinking I was so funny, and feeling quite proud of myself. 
Then I turned around and 
"evil-er Staci" was over there moving like all of them every which way!!!!!!!! 
I swear I've never had so much fun, or laughed so hard in a gift shop before. 
Seconds later, 
from a safe distance,
we watched that poor,
#1. Turn around 
#2. Spot the wreckage
#3. Freak out
#4. Dash over
#5. Rectify the situation
#6. Relate the atrocities to the other workers
#7. Set up a more vigilant lookout
It was all I could do to stop "evil Emily" from doing it again.)

Em and I decided to pose all crazy with this silly cutout when suddenly, the ACTUAL man came walking up. We all took a picture with him! Totally random and SO hilarious!

As we were snapping these last few pics on the pier, I couldn't help but think about how BLESSED Em and I both are. We both married such GOOD and honorable men who love us (kiss us in public ☺) and take good care of us. They adore their families, work SO hard, and don't take life too seriously. They are FUN to be around and they make us LAUGH so hard we cry! They put up with us and our crazy antics. 
We put up with them too.
(That's exactly how I feel)

On the way home we stopped at the White House. 

And THAT was our AMAZING trip to DC!!! Great friends, great food, great sites, and LOTS of caffeine(or as Tom likes to say "pep-sua") to keep us going. WE LOVE YOU PERRY FAM! Thank you for everything.(Love you too, and It's us that are the lucky thankful ones) This was the absolute highlight of my year!(Ditto) Move to Idaho Falls....will you please?☺(Find us a job and it's done, and done)