Sunday, May 22, 2011

Luv in the Couv

Bill and I went to Luv in the Couv last night. He and Bob Knight were the co-emcees/auctioneers. They took advantage of the Luv in the Couv theme for all their jokes. It was a fun evening.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

2011 AHA Heart and Stroke Walk

I have to admit. I have never participated in one of those fundraising walks before. I never wanted to bother with raising any money or taking the time to participate in the walk. That changed for me this year. It became more personal to me. I'm not sure why it hasn't before. My grandpa had a stroke. My aunt needed open heart surgery. We've had several family members with cancer. I guess it took having a good friend of mine having a stroke at a very young age for it to really hit home for me. Colleen and I have been friends for over 15 years and she had a stroke at the beginning of the year at the age of 46. Even though our friendship had gotten to the point that we didn't see each other very much because of our busy work and family schedules, we have always made a point to see each other to celebrate our birthdays. Her birthday was in March and I desperately wanted to celebrate it with her. I didn't see her at all while she was in the hospital so it was my first time seeing her after the stroke. She is doing so much better than they expected at one point but it is hard to see her with her paralyzed right arm and not be able to have a real conversation with her. I took dinner and a birthday cake to her home and spent some time talking to her and showing her my photo album from the last year. She was so happy to see me.

Southwest Washington Medical Center--now PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center--has always made a big investment into getting lots of people to participate in the Heart and Stroke Walk. We almost always have the most corporate participation and fundraising for the Oregon and Southwest Washington portion of the walk. This year they dedicated our participation to Colleen so I decided that I was going to participate. Dr. Djergaian's goal was to get Colleen to a point that she could participate in the walk this year and she did. She wasn't able to make it the whole 3 miles but she did pretty well.

Chris decided to join me today. It became personal for him this week too. Bill's mom had open heart surgery on Wednesday to have two of her heart valves repaired. The surgery was a success--unfortunately, Thursday morning we discovered that she had had a stroke during the surgery. She has been in ICU since then. We are hoping that she can be transferred to the stepdown unit soon and be able to start stroke rehab once she gets recovered from her heart surgery a little more. But there are a lot of unknowns for us right now. Not knowing if she will ever be able to go home. And even if she does go home, she will lose the independence that she values so much because she will need much more care.

Sometimes it is hard to know what God's plan is for us. Bill and I are at peace with what has happened and we have always know that some day she would need for us to take care of her. We were relieved when she moved to be near us so that we could do it more easily. It is still hard to see someone you love suffering. We don't know what the future will bring as far as how much function she will be able to get back. We just know that our lives are definitely going to change in a big way and are praying that we are up for the challenge.

Friday, May 20, 2011

CWU Air Force and Army ROTC Presidential Day Retreat and Awards Presentation

This has been an eventful week for our family. Because of Beverly's surgery, we weren't sure that we were going to be able to attend Tom's Presidential Day Retreat this year. But we decided to go and are so glad that we did. He surprised us by not telling us that he was actually receiving an award at this year's ceremony. When we got there and read his name in the program, we were thrilled for him. He got his award from The Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War. It was so nice that he was recognized for his hard work and accomplishments.

Afterwards, we took him and Maddy out for a celebratory dinner before flying back home again.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

New Polka Dot Pixel Releases This Week-Discovery

Emily did a collaborative kit with Dianne Rigdon this week called Discovery. They put together a beautiful kit. This first layout is a Facebook ad that I did for an event Bill and I are going to on Saturday night. He is co-emceeing this with Bob Knight--the president of Clark College and a member of the Long Gray Line having graduated from West Point in 1980--two years ahead of Bill. He even jacked up Bill once while he was walking the area as punishment. So they go way back. Luv in the Couv is going to be a fundraiser for the Clark County Historical Museum. The idea for the event came from naming Vancouver the 11th most romantic city in the U.S. based on the sales of romantic novels and other things deemed romantic. The picture is from the Columbian newspaper. Celeste is going to dress up as a cigarette girl at the event selling roses and other romantic things--not cigarettes.

This second layout is of my cousin's daughter. I was really impressed with the great pictures that Tracy took and loved doing this layout for her.

Stephanie's boyfriend got an out of the park homerun last weekend and Tracy asked me to do a layout for him as well. I used a couple of past Polka Dot Pixel kits to do this one as well as a couple other kits from 2Peas and Miss Mint.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Country Critters 4H Rabbit Show

We had our rabbit show this weekend at the fairgrounds. There were a lot of young kids there this year and not very many seniors. There were only three seniors this year. It gave Christopher the opportunity to get Reserve Champion though. He has never done before so that was nice for him.

I also took a few pictures of our youngest 4H club members. I get such a kick out of them. I like Summer and her spunk a lot but I have also enjoyed watching the friendship that she and Michelle have developed over the last year. They greet each other so enthusiastically every time they see each other and have to share what they brought to play with that day. So cute to watch them together. They wanted to play with Ranger at the show so I took a few pictures of them with him and doing fitting and showing with their own rabbits.

(I used the new Polka Dot Pixel Circle of Friends kit for the layout of Summer and Michelle and totally scraplifted Suzanne from the creative team for the design of the LO. The layout of Christopher and the other seniors was made with lots of different Polka Dot Pixel kits.)

Monday, May 2, 2011

Birthday Weekend at the Beach

Bill and I traveled down to Seaside, Oregon for his birthday weekend. It actually wasn't much of a fun trip for him. We went so that he could go to a district meeting for Rotary that was being held there. And I sort of pushed him into it. It had been about ten years since we had been to that portion of the Oregon coast and I was feeling the need to go see the ocean. So while he was in meetings, I was out doing some sightseeing. I would join him for meals and he skipped out on a few sessions so that it wasn't all work for him. But I did feel bad going down to Cannon Beach and up to Fort Clatsop by myself while he was in meetings on his birthday.

Friday night's dinner and entertainment was actually very fun. The Rotary International exchange students were at the dinner and provided a talent show including singing, dancing, juggling, and stand-up comedy. The energy and enthusiasm was contagious. And they were so talented.

Saturday morning, I drove down to Cannon Beach area to take pictures. I love the view from Ecola State Park so I started there. And then stopped at various spots in Cannon Beach and south of there to get pictures of Haystack Rock.

When I got back to Seaside, I took a stroll down the Prom along the beach to go see the Lewis and Clark Salt Works that is nestled in a residential neighborhood of Seaside. Lewis and Clark sent three of their men to the ocean to make salt. By the time they got to the ocean, they had exhausted their salt supply that they needed to preserve their meat. So for nearly two months, three men boiled seawater 24 hours a day in order to get 4 bushels full of salt-enough to get back to the east coast.

After eating lunch with the Rotarians, I headed up to Warrenton to go to Fort Clatsop--Lewis and Clark's winter camp. They arrived on the north side of the Columbia in November but were unable to find a suitable place to setup camp on the north side so they decided to come to the south side of the Columbia where they had heard from the Indians that game was more plentiful. It took them a few weeks to built the fort but they had it completed by Christmas Day. It rained all but 12 days during the 106 days that they were there. They traded with the Clatsop and Chinook tribes and hunted elk, deer and other small game to survive the winter. Lewis and Clark updated their journals while they were there.

All in all, it was a good weekend.

(Bill's birthday layout was made with Polka Dot Pixel's Circle of Friends kit. The Lewis and Clark layout was made using Polka Dot Pixel's grungy cardboard papers and Penmanship kit.)