Thursday, April 30, 2009

Craftin'

Oh, how I love this boy.


I was working on a project today while Amos was watching Sesame Street. Before I knew it, he had abandoned Sesame Street, pulled a chair up to the counter, and was helping me.

Not Cancer

More good news at the Horne house today. A couple weeks ago I went in and had a few moles checked. They said they'd call if they found anything wrong, otherwise everything was fine. Well, they called. One of the moles they biopsied was "changing." I went in today and they checked it out a little more. Its not a normal mole, but its not a melanoma either. It falls somewhere in between. The doctor removed it and some of the margin around it to make sure it never had the chance to become cancer. I got three stitches, and I'll have a small scar, but I am totally ok with that. Since I grew up playing outside ALL the time in the Florida sun, I know skin cancer is something I need to watch for, but I am glad to say everything is ok for now.


In other Horne house news, our yard is finally under control. When we bought our house it was a completely unfinished mess. The weeds were 4 feet tall, and there was broken glass, trash, and rocks everywhere. Our lot was the last one in the neighborhood to be built, and I think our yard was the dumping ground for a long time. We still haven't planted any trees or flowers yet, but we'll get there. At least its not totally embarrassing now.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Under Contract

Great news in the Horne house tonight, the Provo house went under contract! We were very blessed to receive two offers this week, and we were able to use that to get our full asking price.

Keep your fingers crossed and pray for us that everything will go smoothly through closing. We're sure ready to have that one off the books.

Also, if you are looking for the best realtor around, we HIGHLY recommend Andi Johnson: andi_johnson@me.com

Monday, April 27, 2009

One more from Boise

We never get very many pictures of my sister, Kate(or her husband, Steve, for that matter). Since I found one, I thought I'd share...

Amos and Aunt Kate at the park in Boise, March '09.

Friday, April 24, 2009

MORE Amos

The final treasures from my cell phone camera-a couple of pictures of AMOS during Eric's birthday present opening...




I got Eric some garden things to go with the garden he built me, wasn't that thoughtful?:

Rough Morning/18 Month Check-up

Yes, the two are related.

This morning I took Amos to the doctor for his 18-month check-up. It did not go well. Amos completely lost it the moment I tried to put him on the scale for the nurse (i.e. very first thing). He recovered slightly after we measured him, but when the doc came in he lost it all over again. I have never seen him so upset. Anyway, I was holding him tight so the doc could check him, and when we got to the part where the doc had to check his diaper, Amos peed all over me and the Doc! So very gross. Poor Dr. Johnson and I were both very mortified. Amos didn't settle down until we were back in the car. We went right from there to see Eric at work, then to breakfast at Kneaders for a little Cream Cheese Brownie Therapy (for both of us).

The little sprinkler system.

Anyway, the important stuff:
Weight: 22 lb., 7 oz 6%
Height: 32" 48%
Head: 48.2 cm-the nurse didn't give me a percentage, maybe he fell off the chart ;)

Buds

Last one from Boise...

When we were in Boise we got to see my good friend, Kelli, and her son, Eli.

Kelli and I have shared many a playdate since Amos was born, and E and Amos are good buddies. Sadly, Kelli and Eli left Utah, but when they did, they went to the perfect place where I just happen to visit a lot--Boise!

Boys at the park.

We loved getting to see those two on this trip...we just want them to come back soon.

More Boise

Here are some more of the Boise cell phone pictures...

When we turned on the t.v. in the Suburban for the first time Amos was really excited and cheered...
...but that quickly turned into a glassy eyed, zoned out, daze:


Maggie was ALWAYS a happy girl during our trip:


Amos and Grammy Cindy are BUDDIES:


I didn't bring Amos a coat on our trip, because, well, I thought winter was over. Anyway, it ended up being totally cold, so he had to borrow a coat from Cousin Morgan. It is *almost* gender neutral. He rocked it regardless:

Bowling in Boise

Yeah, I'm going to backtrack just a little here. Back in March when we were in Boise we went bowling one day. I just came across some pictures of said event on my cell phone.

Amos' lone roll. I think he knocked down 8 pins, which I am pretty sure is way more than I knocked down in a single roll:


Here's Amos and Grammy. They were mostly good spectators:


Maggie with Grampy Shaver and Uncle Josh. More good spectators:

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

My Maggie Girl

I've been cleaning out Maggie's drawers and replacing the clothes that are too small with the bigger ones. While I was doing that today, I came across the t-shirt that they gave Maggie at the NICU to commemorate her ambulance ride. It brought back a flood of memories from that time, and I wanted to record them, since I never have before.


Maggie in her $800 t-shirt.

First and foremost, I am so grateful that she is sitting next to me while I write this, because the whole thing could have gone a lot differently. I recently was introduced to this company: Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep Foundation, which specializes in remembrance photography for babies and I can barely stand it. I don't know how anyone endures the trial of losing a child.

Anyway, here's the long version of what I can remember:

When Maggie was born everything checked out just fine. Eric and I had her in our room for a couple hours when a nurse came in with my dinner. The nurse asked us how long Maggie had been making the grunting sound she was making, and we told her it hadn't been long. The nurse seemed concerned, so she left and came right back with our nurse. They took Maggie to the nursery and immediately called our pediatrician. I knew it wasn't good because they don't call the doc after hours unless they have to. In the meantime, it all happened so fast, I didn't have time to tell my family, who were on their way, what was happening. My Mom and Dad and sister, Anna, were in town to take care of Amos and they brought him to the hospital to meet Maggie that evening. By the time they got there she was in the nursery, so they could only look at her through the glass. We had no idea at that point that she wasn't going to make it out of the hospital before my Dad had to leave and that he wouldn't get to meet her on that trip.

Maggie was born on election day, and I remember everyone small talking about the results as they came in while we waited for the doctor to get there. When he got there he ordered a spinal tap and some other tests. He also said Maggie needed to spend the night in the nursery where she could be monitored. They immediately started her on an antibiotic, since all her symptoms pointed towards an infection.

Eric and I spent an hour with her in the nursery, then we headed back down the hall to our room to get some sleep since it was pretty late at that point. Maggie seemed ok when we left her, we thought everyone were just being careful. I didn't sleep well that night. I woke up at like 2 a.m. and went to look at Maggie in the nursery. She looked really good. The nurse on duty said she thought she looked really good too. I went back to my room, and at 5 a.m. had a repeat wake up and visit to the nursery. This time, when I left the nurse followed me back to my room where Eric was still asleep. She told me that Maggie had tested positive for an infection, and they thought it might be meningitis. They were surprised because she looked so good, but something was definitely wrong. The nurse left, and Eric, who had been asleep, woke up to my sobbing. It was horrible I was crying so hard, I couldn't even tell him what had happened.

When I got ahold of myself we went to the nursery and met the pediatrician. I remember him very clearly saying, "I'm not sure what's wrong yet, but she IS sick." Poor guy, I was such a sobbing wreck, I would have hated to talk to me then. He arranged for Maggie to be transferred from Orem Community Hospital to Utah Valley Regional Medical Center, so she could be in the NICU. The ambulance team came and packed her up. They brought her to my room to say goodbye, she was so tiny in the huge clear case (? I don't know what its called?). Again, the poor ambulance team, I was such a wreck. Once she left, my doctor came to check me out immediately so we could go meet her at the NICU. There we were, less than 24 hours since we got to the hospital to have our baby, leaving it without her. I called my parents on the way to the hospital to tell them what had been happening. I told them I'd let them know as soon as we knew more.

When we got to UVRMC we went to the 5th floor, where the NICU is. They are, for obvious reasons, very careful about security there. I think the look on my face was all they needed to know that my baby was definitely there. I can't imagine being a nurse there, what a special kind of person it must take to work there. I remember being a crying wreck as the nurse talked to us, I have no idea what she said that first time. Fairly quickly it became clear I was no good to anyone, so they told Eric to take me home, let me sleep and eat. As we left Maggie was surrounded by nurses taking care of her and hooking it her up to all kinds of machines.

We drove home and parked the car. I made the mistake of turning around and looking at Maggie's empty car seat and lost it all over again. My Dad met us in the driveway, and he hugged me as I bawled, and I said "I'm sorry, I'm not doing very good right now." He hugged tighter and said "we aren't either." My Mom made us a good lunch, and then I slept. I was so tired and emotionally exhausted, it felt so good. I remember waking up feeling good, and then remembering what was happening and it all coming flooding back.

After I woke up, we went back to the hospital. That first day was so hard. I could barely look at Maggie without bawling. We weren't able to hold her that day either. I just wanted to pick her up and make it all better. It was a horribly long waiting game. They'd run lots of tests and were just trying to figure it out. We called our good friend David to come to the hospital to give Maggie a blessing with Eric. While they were giving the blessing our doctor called. He had such great news--it wasn't meningitis. I know her fate was already determined at that point, either it was meningitis or it wasn't, but I was so overwhelmed by the immediacy of the Lord's response to our faith to have the doctor call during the blessing. I also remember that at that point, the tears stopped.

Things were much better after that night. Maggie started to test negative for the infection, and as long as she kept testing negative she could go home after 10 days of antibiotics. My Mom and Anna stayed at our house and took care of Amos so I could be at the hospital a lot of the time. I got used to the drive between our house and the hospital, the walk across the parking lot, through the hospital lobby, and up the elevator to the 5th floor. I got used to turning the corner and seeing Maggie in her bed and being so glad to see her.

I am so grateful Eric was with me through all of this. We learned that we deal with trials very, very, very differently, but that's what makes us a good team. We didn't take any pictures of Maggie hooked up to all the machines in NICU, it was too painful then. I wish now we had, so I could show her how far she came someday.

Maggie in her bed at the NICU.

This One's For Anna

[I was definitely trying to take a picture of
Maggie, but Amos wasn't having any of that.]


When Anna came home from her mission she brought Amos the ugliest pair of yellow socks I've ever seen. Not only are they yellow, but they have a picture of "ultra man" on them. Of course, he loved them and wanted to wear them all the time. The minute they were too small I packed them away in a tupperware in his closet. Today he disappeared into his room, and came back with the ultramans. He's been wearing them ever since. I especially like that he refuses to wear pants with them.

Thanks Anna.


Yes, he's about to throw that ball to/at me.

Photog Part II

Once again, as I downloaded the pictures I knew were on the camera, a few others turned up. Apparently he's into portraits these days.

His BFF (who hopefully was trying to take the camera away):


Self-Portraits:



The best one of all--a picture of himself video chatting with Nan and Pop Horne:

Monday, April 20, 2009

The 'burb

I don't believe we've discussed the awesomeness that is "The Suburban" yet. My parents were downsizing some vehicles last summer, and in the process we inherited "The Suburban." It couldn't have come at a better time, since we needed a big vehicle for moving, basement finishing, and more space for Maggie's car seat.


Here is why "The Suburban" is awesome:

1. I learned to drive how to drive in it. 10 YEARS AGO. I do not drive any better today than I did back then.

2. It is lowered and has tinted windows. Hispanic people offer to buy it on a regular basis.

3. It has a TV and VCR in it. This came in very handy on our last trip to Boise when Amos watched Space Jam three times. The movie came complimentary with the car, i.e., we found it under the seat.


4. It still has a built in car phone. No service, but the phone is definitely there.

5. The windshield wipers are "intermittent at best" (to quote my Mom), but they've always worked when we needed them too, like to pass inspections.

6. When we moved to Springville it still had Idaho plates. People still ask us what part of Idaho we moved from.

7. When the Shaver family moved from Florida to Oregon, we drove "The Suburban." We pulled a trailer carrying the family dogs and other items not allowed on the moving truck. We also had the family turtles in the car with us.

8. It has lived in: Florida, Oregon, Idaho, and Utah.

9. It was my Mom's car, and I want to be just like her when I grow up. My Mom used to spend like 8 hours a day in it chauffeuring us all over town. I will most likely do the same for Amos and Maggie and any other Horne children someday.

10. Its about to have its 120th birthday (as in 120,000 miles).

11. It has a 44 gallon tank. That gets us all the way to Boise without any stops. On our last trip to Boise my Dad filled it up for me. That's 44 gallons of AWESOMENESS.

$$$$

I feel like we hear a lot about money these days. Actually, if I hear the phrase "today's economic climate" one more time, it might kill me. Anyway, as a part of my New Year's resolution I have started to pay more attention to our money.

It all started when my friend Britni asked me how much Amos' fruit snacks cost and I couldn't even ballpark it. I have bought those fruit snacks like 6,000 times, and I had no idea how much I was spending on them. So, I went to Costco, armed with a notebook a calculator (yes, like a big dork) and I wrote down the prices and quantities of all the things we usually buy. I was really surprised to find out that some of the things we buy all the time were not a good deal at all. I also realized I didn't necessarily even know what a good deal was.

Since then I've started to pay much better attention to things, and I've started to shop a whole new way. I heard about the Coupon Mom on Oprah, the View, our local news, etc., etc. but it didn't make any sense until I read her ebook that you can download here.


From there I learned how to read that crazy foreign language "couponer's speak" from the website Pinching your Pennies, particularly, the Utah forum, and the Albertson's threads.

I've had some very crazy shopping trips (we'll talk about the 30 boxes of gushers someday), I've been way out of my comfort zone sometimes, and I've definitely been annoyed by those crazy ladies with all those coupons for years, but I am starting to see that they've got a really good thing going here. Saving money is cool.

Oh. My. Heck.

I have a kid in the nursery! Yesterday was Amos' first day of nursery at church (you have to be 18 months old to go). Eric and I weren't too worried about him making the transition, but he did have a little bit of a rough time. I took him in at the beginning and he immediately ran off and started playing, so I snuck out the door. Well, I guess as the other parents came in and out with their kids, Amos noticed the door opening and wanted to go out. When the nursery leaders tried to keep him from escaping, he did not love it. They found Eric, and Eric spent the last hour with him in the nursery, mostly watching him, but acting as a safety net when Amos needed him. I know he'll be ok as he gets more used to it, and I couldn't be happier to be able to go to Sunday School and Relief Society without him.

Here is the "big boy" drinking a bottle and sitting in Maggie's car seat:


Chewing on my necklace:


Here's Princess Maggie all ready for church. I had a hard time getting her to look at me, she wanted to watch Amos chew on the necklace:


Happy Birthday Eric!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


I just want to say how much I love Eric, and I know he doesn't love that its his birthday today, but he still deserves to be celebrated =)

Friday, April 17, 2009

Playmates

No, not the bunny kind.

Amos wants to play with Maggie ALL the time. Its gotten to the point now where she sorta've plays along. She can hold things, so most of the time its Amos handing her a toy, her holding it, and then him taking it back. Its cute how much he likes her, I just hope eventually she'll stop rapidly blinking and bracing for impact every time he comes near.



Photog

One day this past week, when it was dark and stormy outside, there was a SUPER bright flash in the hallway. My heart skipped, it was like lighting had struck INSIDE the house. I ran out into the hallway and there was Amos taking pictures with our camera. Yeah. He had the flash on.

His "art" (the view sort of stinks from 3 feet):



...and somehow he managed to make the autofocus blurry??:

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Chocolate

For as long as I can remember my Mom had little stashes of chocolate all over the house. Sometimes it was candy bars, sometimes it was m&ms, sometimes it was chocolate chips. I may have picked up this same habit somewhere along the way, and I have a little stash of chocolate chips in my room. Sometimes a girl just needs a little hit of chocolate, is that so wrong? Only problem--this morning I was found out. I was doing dishes in the kitchen and when I came out Maggie was like this:


How does a 5-month-old who can't move get a hold of a bowl of chocolate chips??? Answer: One very smart 18-month-old with a chocolate covered face:


There was a small tug of war over the chips, Maggie didn't want to part with them:


And neither did Amos:


What can I say? None of the apples fell far from the tree.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Last one for now...

The "best of" Nan and Pop's most recent trip.

Maggie is getting really good at rolling over and tummy time:


Amos is into riding his truck:


Happy, nakey Maggie:


One thing you can count on with Amos, there is always lots of kissing:


You can also always count on him to do something random, like sitting on the toilet and just hanging out:


One of Amos' new favorite pastimes-jumping off the couch whether someone is there to catch him or not:


The sun was bothering Maggie:


One night Amos decided it would be really fun to roll Maggie over and over. He would roll her over and then clap really excited. It was cute, but Maggie wasn't quite sure if she liked it:






And that's all.