Reincarnated As A Mother

Thursday, October 31, 2013

The Big Bad Wolf

Another Halloween.
Wow... time is flying in a way.
Reese dazzled as a "good witch".
Holland smoldered as an Egyptian Princess...
Greer shined as Hermonine...
And Kean and I stayed home and watched....
drum roll please....
I did uncover an old picture from just after Holland was born.
Byron and I went to the Halloween party of all Halloween parties.
Ask me about it sometime when you have some time.
Check out those legs.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Chemo and Candy Overload

Well, we've got another one of "those" days under our belts.
Chemo through Kean's port.
I was slightly nervous after the accident that there would be a problem
but alas, his blood flowed beautifully when they accessed him- so all was good.
The great and wonderful Robin Clark was our date for the day--
which meant - for Kean  - lots of snacking, lots of waiting and the
grand ritual of watching, yes, you guessed it, Cars.
 Kean had big hugs for one of his favorite nurses, Penny-- even though
she loaded him up with Chemo and gave him a flu shot!
 By tonight, he wasn't feeling so good. Byron stayed home with him
while I took the girls to our church's Halloween carnival.
Greer charmed as a witch during the cake walk.
 Holland ended up as a helper-- this picture doesn't show it well-- but she has
these tattooed glittery lips on-- (thanks April and Chris).
 Reese was the only one not to ditch me for the evening.
She had a grand time going fishing, bobbing for apples,
shooting basket balls for candy and snagging donuts off a string.
 My favorite moment of the evening came when Reese moved over to the next booth,
looked up, saw it said "Kissing Booth" and slowly started to back up!!!
She finally decided she liked this booth when they handed her a chocolate kiss.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Proud as Pumkin-Colored Peacocks

Looky what these two girls pulled off with minimal parental interference.
They even made the little one for Keanut.

Monday, October 28, 2013

The Evaluation

I was so nervous for today.  It was Kean's first day at his new special "school".
Remember, he's been approved by his Oncologist to go to a 3 hour class
every Monday morning with 3 other special needs kids for extra therapy
and socialization.
They had told me to plan on dropping him off-- l-l-l-l-leaving him.
I was so worried he'd be a real pill for them.
 But things actually turned out okay.
I had to stay and fill out paperwork, then answer a bunch of questions
from the therapists who spent the day evaluating him to get a baseline.
So I did get to see him here and there and he seemed to be just fine.
They even found a "motorcycle" for him to play on-- but it was a tricky one,
one he had to balance on.
I did leave for the last forty minutes.  His teacher/therapist
said he ran out of gas right about then.
No surprises there.
But our hope is, he'll get used to this.
And hopefully flourish.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Secret Ingredients

Today was a pretty big day-
well, maybe not in Kean's estimation-- but in mine.
I took him to church.
Yep.  The first time since June 2012.
Today was the big children's program at church-- not only did Greer and Reese
have speaking parts but Greer sang a song with a few other girls.
And I didn't want to miss it.
Since Byron was out of town (as is my mom), I didn't have anyone to leave him with.
So I took him to church late, left early and we stayed in the very back -- away from most everyone.
My dad went with us.
I'm just not so sure how much Kean got out of the meeting.
About the only time he stopped telling me he wanted a motorcycle ride or to watch Cars
was when the children sang songs.  Thankfully, they sang quite a bit.
By the way, in the program, each of the children participate
with a speaking part.  The teacher of the class, Kean is supposed to be in got up
and said how Kean Barker is thankful for blessings and tractor rides.
It was quite sweet.
 Grandpa came back to our house for dinner and the after dinner making of cookies.
(Reese finally got 100% on her spelling test and requested peanut butter cookies).
 Only thing is, I'm not sure you'd consider Grandpa super helpful.
He tortured and teased the girls by sneaking popcorn, red hots and licorice candies
into the cookie dough.
Crazy Grandpa!
Byron and Holland made it home a little after 8.
They said the funeral was wonderful.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Spider Girl and Yoga Boy

Byron and Holland took off in the wee hours of the morning
and headed to Spokane.
Byron's aunt passed away and they decided last night to drive up for the funeral.
Here's the picture Holland sent me-- geez, does it look like they ordered
one of everything off the menu or what?
 The girls headed to a friend's house for a Halloween Sugar Fest.
Reese decided at the last minute she didn't want to wear a costume.
She settled for a black lacy dress, my feeble attempt at painting a spider's web
and spider on her face, some webbing and a spider in her hair.
Not the best but not the worst either.
 Meanwhile, Yoga Boy and I stayed home.
So glad he's too young to realize all he's missing out on.

Friday, October 25, 2013

A Little Night Music

If you are a parent and you've had that "distinct opportunity" to go to your child's
orchestra concert-- nod your head.
Ya'll know what it is like.
Greer had her first performance of the year and she did great!
Between you and me, I was nicely surprised all the kids sounded as good as they did.
Perhaps I was expecting the concert to sound more like a feral cat being smacked against a wall.
How's that for a visual?

 Perhaps the highlight (or low light depending on who you ask)
was the part of the concert where they had a parent come up and then had
their child spend five minutes teaching them how to perform a song.
(So here's where the feral cat part of the concert came in...).
Now if you'd like to relive those memorable parenthood moments
or if you've never had the honor- here is a very short little song
that you'll be sure to recognize.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Cup Cakes and A Little Beef Cake

So our darling, sweet, little angel boy has been quite the pill the last few days.
If I can get him to take a bite of food, he'll eat it and on bite two-- he gives me
the big "no".
Repeat, repeat, repeat.
Tonight, I thought I'd get nice and creative and make cupcakes for dinner.
Actually, meatloaf cupcakes with mashed potato frosting.
 The girls thought they were pretty cool.
Kean, while quite unimpressed, did eat a few more bites than normal before
giving me the "no".
Back to the ol' drawing board tomorrow.
Meanwhile, look what happens when I turn my back for just a moment;
Holland and her Halloween lipstick.
 Oh the challenges of being the token boy.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Not So Random Acts of Kindness

In case you need any proof that there are still guys out there riding horses and wearing white hats.... look no further.
A member of my church congregation, Matt Brinton took my sickly, infected computer today, did  the diagnostic version of mouth to mouth on it and returned it tonight---- we think working again.
We're running some updates on it overnight and should know tomorrow if my laptop with EVERYTHING on it has been rescued.
Keep those fingers crossed that I can cross this "stresser" out of my life.
Hurray for good guys!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

When It Rains It Pours..

Today is one of those days I just want to sccrreeaaammm!
I was supposed to hear yesterday --today at the latest on how much money the insurance company will give me for my car.
I never heard from them. I hate this limbo state.
And then to throw salt in my already open wounds (well my back still hurts from the accident)... my laptop has been completely disabled by a virus. 
Remind me to keep my kids off my computer from now on.
Meanwhile, I'll remind myself to try and keep positive.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Escape With Me...

No complaints about the weather here.
It is picture perfect.
But after a long night of homework, I keep finding myself wishing I was back in Fiji.
So I thought I'd take us all on a quick little stroll through some of the sights.
On our first day on the island, we stopped and explored this to-die-for resort:  The Pearl.
 It was really quite windy that day but that didn't take away from any of the beauty.
They had these little cabanas out on the rim of the grass overlooking the water
that you could just sit and stare into oblivion or lose yourself in a good book.
Sheer heaven, I tell you.
 This picture gives you an idea of how much the wind was whipping around.
 Everything on the inside (well, except for the rooms) is open air and absolutely lovely.
This was just one of many sitting areas and right by the restaurant where we had
a delicious lunch.
 This has to be one of the best signs of all time.
(Seriously, a large number of people are killed or injured each year
in Fiji by falling coconuts).
 One afternoon, Byron, Jan and I headed to downtown Suva (the capital city)
to their farmer's market for a little grocery shopping.
 Let's just say Jan and I were like kids in a candy store.
I think she bought out the place.  Oh wait, it was like the size of
two football fields.  But really, we came home with bags and bags
of stuff to make salsa, lemon cookies, fresh fruit...
 and stuff to experiment with-- these are called "bread fruit"
and look more like something you'd see in a Dr. Seuss illustration- all bumpy and hairy.
Who would have thought grocery shopping would be such an adventure.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Sunday Shenanigans

We had our dear friends, the Moomey's over for dinner tonight.
Enchiladas- yum.
And English Trifle (Greer had to make it and try it out for a school project-- sure liked
that one better than the animal cell model Holland had to make this weekend for science).
Elly and the girls have this crazy tradition of filling their mouths with whipping cream
every time we go camping.
We didn't make it camping this year-- but still had to honor the ancient Moomey/Barker ritual!
 I love this picture of Ron and Elly leaning back like they have nothing
to do with this mayhem.
 But here's proof they're not totally innocent-- they're just totally fun.
p.s.  that's not whipped cream-- it's some of Greer's duct tape.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Take A Seat

 Ho Hum.
Today I had to go buy a new car seat for Keanut.
Since the accident was a "high speed" impact, his old car seat had to be replaced.
 Old or new, Kean sure didn't seem too impressed with his new ride.
Thankfully, he shows no signs of any problems from the crash.
I'm a different story.
I'm still really quite sore (and my knees are bruised).
I finally went to see a chiropractor on Thursday and again today.
He warned me I would likely feel worse here at the beginning as
he worked on me.  And boy, was he right.
I don't have anything huge-- like a ruptured disc-- but
he thinks I'm in for about ten visits before I'm "back" to my old self!
Never a dull moment around here.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Jail Break

Either I'm getting braver about taking Kean out into the big, bad, germy world,
or I'm tired of living under house arrest.
Tonight was the big Camp Rainbow Gold Halloween Party at the zoo tonight.
Camp Rainbow Gold is part of the American Cancer Society (they put on camps
for kids with cancer and their families).  Tonight was a party just for kids with
the big C and their families. I figured it was outside and out of everyone, these cancer
families would probably be more careful about germs so the party might be okay for Keanut.
And what a party it was--
from all kinds of carnival games.
 to free reign of the zoo (we even got to see this cute baby snow leopard).
 Kean was totally into the fresh air, all the excitement  and the getting of candy
after every game.  Kean even played a few.
 We spent lots of time on the carousel...
 Surprisingly, Kean wanted nothing to do with riding the wooden horse,
he'd only sit on my lap.
But we took several spins (at Reese's request).
I think by the end of the night the kids were all on a major sugar high.
They had snow cones, a cupcake walk, cookie decorating,
 and donuts-- plus tons of candy as prizes for all the games.
 I swear we nearly needed a suitcase to bring home all the goodies
and treasures (photo booth strips, painted pumpkins, spin art, oh and don't
forget the bags of candy).
I think the best part was the kids getting to see their old camp counselors
and friends from camp.
We all loved it-- even Kean.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Horsin' Around

Well we've talked all about Kean's obsession with the movie Cars-- probably ad nausea.
In fact, the other night, Byron was up checking on our ancient dog, Zoe when he
caught a whiff coming out of Kean's bedroom-- and trust me it wasn't cologne.
This is my favorite part of the story-- Byron changed Kean's stinky diaper.
But here's what will likely be your favorite part of the story--
Kean was really out of it, you know, with his eyes practically rolled back into his head.
After all, it was past 3 in the morning.
When Byron was nearly done with the dirty deed, Kean cracked open his eyes,
made the sign for motorcycles and whispered "Dad... cycle ride?"
Gotta love that freakishly obsessed kid!
Coming in second, would be his fixation with horses.
During therapy last week, we were having him do a dog puzzle
and didn't have the heart to correct him each time he called a pup a horse.
For today's horse therapy, he was happy to be outside.
But lately, right in the middle of riding he will try to ditch off.
Good thing we are ready and waiting!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

That Girl

Ahhh, the many sides of a tween.
Holland is certainly keeping us on our toes.
Crazy one minute, hormonal the next...
 And then she gives us these glimpses of the woman she will become one day.
And what a beautiful woman that will be.
I have to tell you about the prayer she gave at dinner the other night.
She was asking Heavenly Father to bless Kean, my Aunt Daleen, my cousin who is
fighting cancer, my mom's neighbor and several of the children we know from the hospital.
And then she stopped and said something to the effect of:
"And please bless yourself and Jesus.  You two have an awful lot to
deal with.  So you deserve blessings too".
My mind's never even gone down that road.
What a sweet, thoughtful girl.
We sure love her.