Thursday, January 27, 2011

20 Years...

So, what would you do or
what did you do for your
20th Anniversary?

This month was our 20th anniversary.
Guess where we spent it...

The Hospital!

There was no hot sun, sand or crashing waves 
we did have our own room
 (with the exception of all hospital staff coming in every 15 minutes) 
and food service.
(well, meals for Brian anyway. None for the 8 month pregnant wife) 

Aren't we THE wild and crazy couple?!

In all seriousness, it has been an incredible 20 years.
I love my man!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

8 Days...

Post Surgery!
And doing well.

The first 4 days after surgery were rough.
Brian was in sooo much pain and really could do nothing.
Nothing at all.
(I do mean nothing)

Not having his foot elevated caused much throbbing which translated into pain.
The children have been awesome!
He has an assigned PA (personal assistant) each day.
They are eager to serve him.

Abbi and Maggie have learned to make his coffee and take it to him each morning.
The girls make him a hot breakfast and deliver it to him in bed.
(he is actually not "in" bed but does lay "on" the bed to do his office work)
PTL for laptop computers!

Caleb and Hudson have been maintaining the camp.
Checking the lodge daily.
Turning on generator when needed.
Snowshoeing to the hydro to get the power running.
Plowing the road.
Fixing the plow.
And the list goes on.

We hate to see him in so much pain but we do LOVE the opportunity to serve him.
We also love the fact that we know where he is at all times...
one of two places -
his bed or the recliner.
Easy to climb on, snuggle, and read with.

8 days post surgery he has weaned himself off the pain meds (for the most part) and is getting around more and more.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Calcaneus Repaired

Good Morning to All!

First of all, thank you (yet, again) so much for all of your prayers, love and support - WOW!

Surgery was scheduled for 7:30 am yesterday. It was delayed quite a bit b/c of a trauma surgery that took precedence over Brian's. They prepped him for surgery around 11am and made the first incision around noon. Surgery took about 3 hours. Dr. Kubiak did some extensive repair on Brian's calcaneus bone - OUCH! Overall, surgery went well. They put all of the pieces together and put them in their proper place with plates and about 12 screws. One of the bigger pieces of bone that they fixed was dead b/c it had been separated from live tissue since Jan 1. It will take about a year for it to come back to life - not sure how that translates for Brian. Brian is to put NO weight on the foot for 3 months (and he thought 2 weeks was long... :-)  

Because of the lateness of day and the major repair, they kept him overnight. He encouraged me to go home to the children and get a good nights rest. He said he would be fine and be asleep most of the time. He was groggy and still nausea when Dad and I left. (I hated leaving him but he was in good hands)

My mom and the children had a wonderful day at home. Mom helped them with school and piano lessons. Then... they dressed up in their "finest" dresses and had a tea party (Grandma Great even joined the fun). Weston put on a tie and coat and served the ladies their afternoon tea and truffles. (Hudson read a book and Caleb is at a friends) After lunch, they all nestled up to a good book. Mom read to a few of the girls, Hattie Big Sky, and they are all hooked. Very fun day!!

This morning it is snowing. 6 inches have already fallen. Hudson left the house around 6:30 am to get a "first run" of plowing on our 2 1/2 mile road. My Dad and a few of the kids are shoveling the walks. Mom and the girls are prepping bkfst.  Brian just called and said that the canyon to the hospital is requiring chains for semi-trucks and for me to just wait till the weather settles a bit. One of the surgeons told him he wouldn't be discharged until this afternoon so Brian said no big rush. I plan to leave mid-morning but we will see how the weather is by then.

blessings and much love to you,

"Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is none upon earth I desire besides you. My heart and my flesh fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever."    Psalm 73:25-26

Dressed and ready to be rolled away to surgery.
He definitely needs a gown like that for his daily wardrobe. 

Monday, January 17, 2011


has been our new vocabulary word for the past two weeks.
Calcaneus is the bone that Brian fractured in his heel.
It is the bone that will get some MAJOR attention tomorrow.

The calcaneus is the bone in the back of the foot, commonly referred to as the heel bone. This bone helps support the foot and is important in normal walking motions. The joint on top of the calcaneus is responsible for allowing the foot to rotate inwards and outwards.

Surgical treatment of calcaneus fractures usually involves making an incision over the ourside of the foot, and placing a metal plate and screws into the broken heel bone. The doctor will attempt to restore the normal alignment of the bone and return the cartilage surface as close to normal as possible.

The following photos are from the internet (not Brian's)
The x-ray on the left is before surgery and the one on the right is after surgery.
See the plates and screws?
That will be Brian's foot tomorrow...

Thanks again for your prayers.


Thursday, January 13, 2011

A Few More

Christmas Traditions

The Candlelight Christmas
This is the Place Monument Park
(2nd annual)
This year we went with my brother and his family.
Very Fun and very, very cold.

Singing with the street carolers

 "Mountain Man" warming by the woodburning stove

Jacob and Weston

Signing the "nice" list.
Caleb was the only one to sign the "naughty" list.  

A live Nativity

Petting the livestock

Learning to Doe-see-Doe (sp? - no idea!)

A round of Hot Chocolate to warm us up.


Another fun activity and I just love how the strands add to our Christmas tree.

We were able to accomplish many strands with just a few finger pricks
Ouch! Those hurt.

Dani Rae and Weston

Maggie, friend Olivia and Elizabeth 

Abbi and Maggie

Me, Baby and Dani Rae

After Christmas, we throw the strands of popcorn on our trees outside 
and enjoy watching the birds peck away at them. 
(a little after-Christmas treat for the birdies)

singing Christmas hymns for/with the church body.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Moving On

to Christmas!!
Seriously? Yes, seriously.
I just have to share a few things about this years Christmas before I actually start posting about present day activities. I do appreciate your patience.

A Favorite Christmas Tradition:
Making Buttermilk Sugar Cookies
(oh yum!) 

It's a fun (and tasty) project from start to finish...

rolling out the dough

cutting out Christmas shapes


frosting and designing each cookie

adding the finishing touches - sprinkles, colored sugar, candies etc

and finally...
eating them!

And once you eat one - there is no stopping until the plate is empty.
(talk about a "sugar high"- whew!)

We still have not quite decided whether we like the cookie dough or the finished product better.
We will try to figure that one out next year :-)

Monday, January 10, 2011

The Grand Finale!

This is my last and very final post about Thanksgiving.
(I know what you are thinking - Finally!)
The following are pics that our photographer took
(Photography by Clark Swensen)

My Dad and Mom 

My Family
Debbie, Grant, Paul, Mom, Dad, and Me

In order of birth:
Paul's family

My Family

Grant's Family

Debbie's Family

Papa and Nana
All 27 Grandchildren
(2 more on the way -  me and my sister are pregnant)

 The Entire Crew

What a fun Thanksgiving!
Great memories.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Backing Up a Bit

I know Thanksgiving 2010 was back in November
AND I know we are now in January 2011
I just have to post the following pics.

These pics were taken while we waited for the professional photographer get set up for our big group photo. The cousins (all 27 of them) just love being with each other!!

The final product of our photo shoot will follow in another post.

ps Thanks for your continued prayers for Brian. We are encouraged by all of you!