Tuesday, November 28, 2006

The Nest

We found this nest on the inside of our shed. Phil was cleaning and putting summer toys away and came across it. He figures that the bird made the nest and laid the eggs. Then, when the warmer weather hit and we started going in and out of the shed and were in the yard, the bird abandoned the nest. The girls were so sad for the bird and it's unborn babies.


Thanksgiving was so peaceful this year. We were joined by our new pastor and his wife and a lady from church whose husband is TDY. First, we read the Thanksgiving story, which we read every year and then we journaled the things we were thankful for, which is another Thanksgiving tradition for our family. Some of the things we are thankful for: family, friends, our American heritage, God’s love, health and freedom.

We were still jet lagged, a bit and Henry kept saying, “I’m tidod (tired).” Finally around 6pm, he crawled up on Phil’s lap and fell asleep. What a sweet end to the day. God’s love is so amazing.

Kate's Friend Party

The butterfly party!

Kate and all her friends

She couldn't blow her candles out...she's NOT her mother's daughter!

Kate's Family Birthday

We celebrated Kate's fifth birthday in Virginia with family so they could actually SEE her open her presents from them. Can you tell she was excited?

Cute cousins!

Henry loved Maui, who he called, "Owie."

Kate and HER new bud, Aunt Sue

Grampy and Grammy, who Henry calls Grandpa and GrandPA.

Mt. Vernon

Inside the house, we were able to see the room where George Washington was told he was elected president and the room where he died. We also saw many original pieces of furniture, even the chair and desk he brought back to the house after he was no longer president. It was an amazing house, but the property is unbelievable! What a piece of real estate!

View out the front of the house of the Potomac river

George and Martha's graves. On the wall above it quotes John 11:25-26, which says:
I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.


Jamestown was really cool. It was the first American settlement (1607) and Addy and I had studied it in our home school about a month earlier, so it was fun to see. They had done a good job, with a separate area for the Indian settlement, another area for the fort and then you could go out to see the ships on the water. The amount of people they fit in each ship was astounding. The firing of the musket was really cool and the way they made each nail was also amazing. I guess I just never realized how much work went into each thing they did.

The beautiful fort

Sue and Sami

Kate got to do what an Indian child of her age would normally be doing...in this case making a child's cutting tool.

Henry with Uncle Chuck, his new bud

Phil with Mom and Dad

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Williamsburg part 1

Apparently, I can’t post a bunch of pictures at once, so this will be broken up into two parts.

Williamsburg was fantastic. First of all, most of us got in free because they had a military free special for Veteran’s Day; free is always a good way to start the day! It was such a beautiful setting and the presentations were very interesting. The people were all very nice and the weather was gorgeous; about 80 degrees in November – Wow! I had the most fun just strolling along and enjoying the beauty. I also liked the costumes and the replicas. The Governor’s palace was very cool, as well. It was so fun for the girls to see a place they have read so much about, due to the Felicity and Elizabeth American Girl dolls they own and we are studying early American history this year, so we will soon be studying that period in history. An added bonus!

Williamsburg part 2

This lady was reading from Obadiah, in the Bible

Buckets that the Cooper was making

Sami and Addy playing in the brick yard
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We made it to Virginia. The flight was hard (because it's so long and the flight was very full), but uneventful. Kuddos to British Airways. It turns out that I had bronchitis before I left, so I spent the first day in Virginia in Urgent Care, but I didn't really have confidence that the doctor there knew how to deal properly with my immune suppression drugs. She sent me away with some antibiotics and after two days I still had a fever, which is remarkable, medically, for someone on immune suppression. I decided I felt most comfortable going to a hospital, so I went to the ER. There, I felt very comfortable that the doctor had knowledge and experience to deal with me and it turns out the antibiotics prescribed would have been fine for a “normal” person, but not for someone like me because I might have all kinds of strange bacteria in my body. So, he gave me stronger antibiotics and told me I was wheezing, which is why my cough was uncontrollable. After starting me on an inhaler and the new antibiotics, things got better quickly.

After the bronchitis was gone, I just couldn’t get caught up on my sleep and my Myasthenia Gravis symptoms became worse, mostly double vision. I also experienced numbness in my toes, which really is unrelated, so I need to talk to my neurologist about that on the 12th.

Other than that, though, we had a great time in Virginia! J We had some fun times with family and lots of laughs and the historical sites we visited were really fabulous. We visited Colonial Williamsburg, the Jamestown Settlement (first American colony) and Mt. Vernon (George Washington’s home).

I’ll attach pictures and stories from each location. The first picture here is with the Pedersen kids and our kids. The Pedersens are friends from Germany that moved back to Northern Virginia in 2004. We’ve stayed in touch and I attached the picture here because some of you may know them and may be interested in the amazing growth in their kids (and family size!). It was fun to catch up with them.

The second picture is one of Henry's pasttimes, flying through the air, Buzz Lightyear style. As he's flying he says, "to infinity and beyond!" He was quite the king with the relatives. We had to knock him down a few pegs once he got home! Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Flying to the States

We're off to the States tomorrow. We'll be in Virginia for about two weeks, visiting Phil's family. We're very excited about the visit, but the traveling part and the jet leg part aren't the best. We are also transferring through London and we just heard they are famous for losing luggage. Ugh. I've never had lost luggage before and I hope this won't be a first. Oh well, we're going to the land of Target.

I found out some results from blood tests today. I've had a decrease in my antibodies that my body is overproducing, causing the Myasthenia Gravis. That's good news. Back in May, they were VERY elevated and they've been going down since then. This isn't a direct correlation, but instead is just an indication. I'll take the good news, though!

I received the results from the liver ultrasound and my liver, pancreas, gallbladder and right kidney are all normal and healthy. I didn't get the result yet of my bilirubin test this week, though.

My neutrophils are elevated again. I guess last week was a fluke, because they're back up at 84.2% this week. That's discouraging news, but I don't know yet what it all means. I'm going to try to call my doctor tomorrow before I leave.

Okay, so here's a funny from Henry. We're still working on the potty thing and he went poop on the toilet the other day and I got all excited and praised him and then he went out and said to Addy, "I went poop on the potty train!"

I may or may not post until we get back. So until then...