Thursday, March 26, 2015

Give it to God

Nicole gave us a little scare recently.  She had a cough that went on for months and months and the doctor had her do a breathing test to see if she had asthma.  Supposedly, the results showed that she didn't have very good lung capacity and we were sent to a pediatric pulmonologist to see what's going on.  After a detailed history, the pulmonologist said she really wasn't concerned.  The cough has finally gone away on it's own and her other symptoms are mild enough that she thinks it isn't anything serious.  Nicole did the same breathing test they did in Cottonwood and it was perfectly normal.  She did a treadmill test, just to be sure, and everything was fine.  We still don't know what (if anything) is going on, but the specialist didn't seem worried, so I'm good with that.

But, let's be honest here.  When your doctor calls and says your daughter's lung functions are way below where they should be for a person her age and body condition, you go into worried mom mode.  And then, if you're me, you Google what it could mean.  I Google everything.  It's my M.O.  If I'm curious about something, or don't know the answer, I Google it.

I no longer recommend Googling things about your child's health that may or may not be serious.  I spent about five minutes looking then quickly closed my laptop and tried to pretend I wasn't scared.  But I was.  The damage was done.  The possibilities were terrifying.  Even when you know that odds are good there's nothing wrong, it's hard not to focus on that slim possibility that the odds aren't in your favor this time.  Needless to say, I spent the following 6 weeks before our appointment trying to put it out of my mind.  It was a great practice in giving my worries to God.  Not something I'm very good at, so it was good for me.  Terrifying, and also good for me.

And on the drive home, we saw this gorgeous, huge, right-in-your-face rainbow.  I think it was the brightest, closest rainbow I've ever seen.  (This picture does not do it justice.)  It looked like we could go find a pot of gold over that next hill.  It was like a beautiful sign from God that he is with us in everything.  The scary things, the happy things, the relief when you find out it's all okay.  God is there.  God is good.  And I am grateful.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Licensed Driver

This sweet, growing-up-too-fast girl is officially a licensed driver!  She took her driving test and written test last week and got perfect scores!

It took some doing, but she talked her dad and I into letting her driving her little car to town the next morning to catch the school bus to the track meet.

And away she goes.  Where has the time gone?  Too soon she'll be driving away for good.  How do parents do it?

Thursday, March 19, 2015

The Game of LIFE

Nicole was asked to Prom this week.  He was terribly clever about how he did it, which seems to be the way these days.  Used to be you would just say, "Hey, you wanna go to prom with me?"  Not anymore.

They're in Personal Finance class together and they play The Game of LIFE occasionally.  Which is odd, because in this game, you really don't see any benefit in going to college, which I don't agree with.  But I digress.....

In Nicole's group, she's usually the banker and hands out the Career Cards first thing.  He said he wanted to be the banker this time and she kinda argued ('cause my kids are good at taking turns, apparently), but she let him take that role.

He hands her this Career Card and she turns it over.....

To find this!  So sweet!  

(I guess he asked the teacher if he could take one of the cards from an old game that's missing pieces.  He covered the whole front with white out and asked the art teacher to write the words for him.  And it was his own idea, not something he found online.  That's awesome!)

But the BEST part?  She texted me right away to tell me about it.  I asked her later who else she texted and she said NO ONE.  Just her mamma.  She wanted to share this fun, exciting news with her mom first.  I can't tell you how that warmed my heart.  Here's to hoping my kids always want to tell their mom first when something fabulous (or not so fabulous) happens in their lives.  If I could be so lucky.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Dinosaur Rides

We were leaving this grocery store in a nearby town when I jokingly suggested that we should go take a picture with this new dinosaur our front.  I didn't think my kids would take me up on it.  I really was joking.  My (almost) 16 year old never ceases to amaze me, though.  She loved the idea and immediately jumped on board.  Her little brother was a little more skeptical, but wasn't going to be left out of the fun.  Ellea was not with us.  I'm doubtful she would have joined in this ridiculousness, but who knows?

We decided Nicole was a little big to sit on the poor thing's back.  He's only made out of plastic, after all.

But, she gave her brother a boost.  Keep in mind this is on a busy street corner.  I'm sure we were an entertaining sight!

I'm certain they love people climbing on their dinosaur mascot.  You can see the poor guy has a chain around his foot.  Guess that's in case he decides to wander.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Dworshak Selfies

The second stop on our 4th grade educational field trip was Dworshak Dam and Reservoir.  This concrete dam is the third highest dam in the U.S.

Since 9/11, they only occasionally allow people to walk along the top of the dam.  School field trips are one of those occasions, so this is the view from the top of the dam.

Morgan and I attempted a selfie with my phone.

But I really wanted the background in the picture, too.

You know what I discovered?  (Besides that I'm not all that good at selfies!)

Sometimes, there's no substitute for just asking someone to take your picture! :)

Monday, March 16, 2015

Fish Education

I had the honor of tagging along with Morgan's 4th grade class to the Dworshak Fish Hatchery last week.  It was very educational.

This is the fish ladder where they go from the river to the fish hatchery.  Something in them tells them to travel back to where they were born to spawn (lay eggs) so some of them end up here.

This is a bunch of adult Steelhead (a type of Salmon).  They migrate to the ocean and live there a few years and then come back to their spawning grounds.  Eggs are harvested from the females and "milt" from the males.  Sadly they die in that process.  The fish are given to the food bank.

This is a bunch of young fish that have been raised from eggs.

Eggs that have been harvested and fertilized.  Morgan's classroom will receive fertilized Steelhead eggs to take care of and watch grow in a fish tank in their classroom.  In a couple months, the students will get to release their fish into one of the local streams.

The fertilized eggs are placed in trays that you can see in the stacks in the background.  Each tray holds the eggs from a single female.  A Steelhead produces about 6500 eggs.  That's a lot of eggs!

See?  I told you it was educational!

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Dear Dad

My dad died 20 years ago today.  He was 53 years old and I was 21.  

First family picture, 1974.  My parents were so cute!

My very first trout, 1978.  I don't look too excited about that fish! 

 In front of the log house my parents built in Sandpoint, 1988.

Family portrait, maybe 1990.  Dad's arm is around black lab, Duke.  

Dear Dad,
It's impossible to think that you have been gone from our lives for two decades.  As I'm sure you know, I was devastated by your passing.  I wasn't prepared.  I wanted you to be the one to walk me down the aisle.   I wanted to get to know you as an adult daughter.  I wanted to watch you get to know each of your grand babies.  My dear husband (who I know you adored - thank you for that), was so patient with me as I grieved.  It took me years to begin to stitch my heart back together and he was a saint as he patiently helped me along.

Oh, how I wish you could be grandpa to my children.  I know you are so proud of each of them.  You and I never were good at communicating feelings, but I will be forever grateful that you made it clear to me you were proud to call me daughter.  And I always knew you loved me.  

My main comfort in losing you is knowing you are in a beautiful place.  No more pain or struggle.  And we will see you again.  I can't wait.  To see that mischievous, love-filled, adoring grin.  Your eyes bright with love for me.  I look forward to.

Until that day, please watch over each and every one of us.  And know that you are greatly missed, always.

Your loving daughter,

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Amused and Entertained

On the first night of the youth convention we went to last weekend, there was a lip syncing competition.  Included in the contest was a nun.  Sr. Miriam is one groovy nun!

But the shocker was that the priest who lip synced Shake it Off, by Taylor Swift, rocked the house!  I loved that he knew the words!  And, he wore a blonde wig.  It was almost too much to take in!

What people won't do to amuse and entertain 1600 teenagers!

Monday, March 9, 2015

God is Good

I had the honor of accompanying 30 youth and adults from Cottonwood to the annual Idaho Catholic Youth Convention in Boise this weekend. It was exhausting and inspiring and profound. I was reminded just how good God is.

Such a treat to watch this beautiful girl as she grows in her faith.  She's amazing.  In so many ways.

There were 1600 (!!) youth from around the state and neighboring states.  You could feel the energy in the room.  The music was amazing.  The speakers were incredible.

God is good all the time.  And, all the time God is good.

Have a great day filled with God's incredible goodness.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Father-Daughter Stripes

Glenn talked Nicole into reffing a 6th grade girls' basketball game with him this week.  She has no experience reffing basketball and hasn't played on a team since she was a 6th grader herself.  Still she was happy to help.

Glenn made a point of telling the two coaches to be nice to her and to yell at him if they needed to yell about something.  Coaches can get pretty crazy about things around these parts.  Even 6th grade coaches with volunteer referees.  They mostly behaved themselves.  She might even be willing to do it again.  She's a good sport, that one.

And she looks pretty good in stripes, too!

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Hug from Daddy

While Glenn was out of town, he requested that I give the kids a hug every day on his behalf.  This was our hug before they got on the bus the first morning.  We sent this picture to daddy.

Can't tell you why our son has his tongue out.  'Cause he's a boy, I guess.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Comings and Goings

Lots of comings and goings in the Poxleitner residence lately........  Glenn was at a conference in Reno, Nevada last week and flew home to Lewiston on Sunday.  I flew out of Lewiston on Sunday to go to work meetings in Twin Falls, Idaho.  We all spent a few hours together during our brief overlap.

Everyone was happy to have their daddy back!  I love this picture.  But Glenn looks more than a tad bit tired.  He got up at 4:30 that morning to catch his flight.  Hopefully he got to bed early that night.

Welcome home, honey.  I'll join you soon!