Friday, October 31, 2008

Really sad day......

Today Matt and I attended the funeral for Marcus. It was a beautiful service. There were hundreds of people in attendance, many of them high school students. Marcus played in the marching band for his high school, and I lost it right before the service when the entire marching band marched in dressed in their full uniforms. To see such solidarity and support from these special teenagers was really moving. After the service the band lined up in two rows to make a path and the casket was carried between the rows, then the family followed. Although it was sad, the service was very uplifting. In our LDS faith, we believe that life on earth is a small part of our eternal life, that it is a time for testing and trial. We believe that when we die we will be able to see our loved ones again. This doctrine was repeated many times throughout the service and it brought me comfort. The most difficult part of the day was seeing Karen. My heart was breaking for her. To watch your child suffer and then accept a reality that children shouldn't have to face must have been so difficult. It makes me so sad and terrified that brain cancer is taking so many children. Since Matt's diagnoses, I have known of 2 other children in this valley with brain cancer. They are both gone now....... Matt's diagnoses is slightly more positive. He has a grade 3 Pilomyxoid Astrocytoma rather than a grade 4 Anaplastic Astrocytoma, but I still get scared, and I still think this awful disease shouldn't be taking our children away from us. Today was a somber day of reflection.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Prayer Request!

Please say a prayer for my friend, Karen, and her son Marcus and their family. I mentioned that Marcus had a recurrence of his cancer a few posts back, and he is failing fast. I feel so heartsick for their family. I've met Karen several times (we both live in Cache Valley), and she has been a source of strength and support to me. They need prayers of comfort during this time!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

I can't believe Jake is nearly one - and other stuff!

Today Matt had an Oncology clinic visit. It was just a check up and resulted in nothing terribly exciting. His counts look good. He always looks and acts as healthy as a horse - particularly when you're comparing him with some of the other kids in oncology! We always feel incredibly blessed with Matt's relative health when we are there. Carolyn came with us and it was wonderful to have an extra set of hands. Jake was a little tired and cranky so it was so helpful when she took him for a little walk so we could visit with the doctor.
After leaving the hospital we went to Crown Burger (mmmmmmmmm, Crown Burger.......) for lunch and then I had scheduled Jake to have his photos taken. Being the slacker mom that I am, Jake has never had professional studio photos taken. Now, it's not quite fair, since we've had Diana living with us and she takes some AMAZING photos of him all the time, so he hasn't been totally neglected on the photo front! Anyhow, my cousins wife works for Kiddie Kandids and so I made an appointment with her. My little man looks so grown up!

This photo is one of my favorites because it so perfectly captures Jake with his 'magic bunny'. I'm sure I've mentioned Jake's 'lovey' on here before. I found this bunny at the store and he fussed until I handed it to him. As soon as I let him hold it, he put it up to his face, put his thumb in his mouth and became the happiest, most content baby on the planet. Hence the name, 'magic bunny!' I wanted to capture the love Jake has for this soft little toy, and I think this photo comes pretty close!

Lastly, on a whim, I threw in Jake's Halloween costume. I am so glad I did! I actually bought a large 8x10 of this picture that I plan on framing and putting out each year. He is a skunk (if you couldn't tell), and on the bum of the skunk are the words, "Little Stinker" that you can see when he crawls around. He is so CUTE!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

See, maybe we WOULD have cute girls!

Diana has a large collection of wigs that she brings out at Halloween. My boys love putting them on. There's something about a wig that really turns you into someone else. In Nate-a-lina and Drew-n-fer's case, it turns you into GIRLS! :-)

Friday, October 03, 2008

My weakness (well, one of them........)

Is there anything on the planet more fantastically indulgent than a fine hotel? Warren and I have had the opportunity to stay at some pretty amazing places. Right now we are at the Four Seasons in Chicago. The linens are sumptous, the service is amazing, and without our children, we are enjoying ourselves immensely! In fact, they 'upgraded' us to a 'residence'. We are in a Four Seasons apartment. It has a large living area, full dining room, and a kitchen along with a large bedroom. We're feeling pretty spoiled!

Lobby of the Four Seasons in Chicago - oooooh la la!

Some other wonderful places we've stayed:
The Intercontinental, also in Chicago. We often stay here when we visit Chicago. The pool is spectacular!

The Swisshotel in Boston was the beginning of the end for me. Warren and I 'Pricelined' a hotel and ended up with a wonderful price for the Swissotel. I was so comfortable in that room and I think I enjoyed it a little bit too much! Before this experience, I was perfectly happy in a Motel6 and I figured a hotel was just a place to sleep when you couldn't be home. Now I know, though, that a stay at a fine hotel can fully rejuvinate me.

For our 10 year anniversary we stayed at The Boulders in Arizona. This resort has these darling little individual cabin type rooms called 'casitas.' They are open and airy and each has a real wood fireplace. One of my favorite memories of our trip was waking up early and sitting out on our own private little balcony, wrapped up in the warm blanket available in our room, reading the newspaper and drinking a cup of cocoa - Heavenly!

Our very favorite hotel is the Grand America in Salt Lake. When Matt was sick, after 10 full nights staying at the hospital with him, my mom talked Warren and I into taking a night away. We booked a room at the Little America, but they were full so they moved us over to the Grand. It is THE nicest hotel I have ever stayed at! The bathroom was all marble, the furniture was beautiful and comfortable, the bed was heavenly. We even got room service that night and the food was so good.

So, now you know my weakness! I enjoy being pampered at a wonderful luxury hotel. It is so fun!