Wednesday, February 24, 2010


As I was preparing for my CT scan last week, the tech asked me when I was supposed to start my treatment (he had obviously read my file). I told him I didn't have to start treatment cause they were able to get all the cancer with surgery. He looked at me and said, "No wonder you are so happy."

YES!! I am happy! I have so many things to be thankful for! I can't believe it has been a year since my surgeries. My one year checkup went very well. My CT and my labs all came back clean. I still have a large cyst in my abdomen, but Dr. Purcell has high hopes it will go away on its own. He is not worried about it and will continue to watch it, and I don't have to go back for a year instead of in 6 months!! What a wonderful day it was!!

I am so thankful to have found myself in the hands of such a wonderful surgeon and also a wonderful oncologist in Billings. I am so thankful to for the priesthood and the power to heal if it is the Lord's will. I am thankful for its for to provide comfort and guidance. I am thankful to know that my Heavenly Father and Savior Jesus Christ know me personally. I have been taught so many things about myself in the last year. I have learned I can't do it on my own. I know the Lord sends His help through others. I learned that He cares about even the little things that are big to us - like NG tubes, cold sores, drains, lack of energy. I have learned that it is ok if the house is not clean all the time, if a gourmet meal is not on the table every night, the girls' hair does not have to be perfect 24/7, it's ok to say no, and it's okay to spend time each day doing something for just me. I have learned that children are very resilient; they seem to sense just when you need a hug and a kiss; they will step up when there is no other option; they love to help out and can do more than I give them credit for. It is fun to work a little and play a lot with my kids - to stop and enjoy the little moments each day with them.

I am thankful to be able to workout again. I am thankful to be able to do the laundry for my family. I am thankful to be able to run my kids to their various activities and appointments. I am thankful to be able to fix meals for my family (I still don't enjoy cooking but I like that I can be the one not enjoying it!). I am thankful to be able to snuggle with the love of my life and not worry about tubes or sore scars. I am thankful to be able to jump on the trampoline, to push my kids on the swings, to shoot hoops, to play volleyball.

I can't believe how things have changed in a year. I have been blessed with a wonderful support system. I have a wonderful, amazing husband, 5 beautiful children, an awesome family, and the best friends a girl could ask for. There are still parts of me that need to continue to heal but what healing is left is so minimal compared to where I was year ago. I am so very blessed!!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Snow Much Fun!!

The kids had a 4 day weekend in January, and when Monday rolled around I just couldn't bear to stay indoors any more. I called Andy at work and asked if he had any ideas for something I could take the kids to do. He suggested going sledding in the gully by his parent's house. So we called my mom and Derrick and asked if they wanted to go along, packed up all our snow stuff, and headed out for a fun filled afternoon. As you can see from the pictures, it was a successfully fun afternoon. Everyone was full of smiles and laughter. Surprisingly, Ashlee loved being all bundled up! She even kept her hat on her head. She was ok with the first trip on the sled with Grandma pulling her, but when Aidan decided to give her a ride, she decided she didn't like it anymore. She just wanted to chill with Grandma or her sisters. She didn't want to go inside and was very content to just watch all the fun. The boys built a small jump and then had fun trying to make sure they hit it on their way down the hill. After all the fun, we went inside and enjoyed some yummy hot chocolate while the kids played Legos for a bit before heading home. Everyone left asking when we would be going back to sled again!

Mom and I didn't think it was fair that the kids were getting to have all the fun, so before we went inside we decided we needed our turn down the hill too. We found out why the kids were having so much fun!! It is fun to just relax and smile and laugh like a kid again!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

My Little Helper

Ashlee decided to help me do the laundry yesterday. Guess she thought the Ramen noodles would cook better prewashed or else this is a new cooking method. Gotta love a cheerful helper!!

What It's All About

Family is really what's it's all about! I was taught this lesson all through high school and I continue to learn it as an adult. I am not discounting my friends because I need them, love them, cherish them, and don't know what I would do without them. But as I am keeping this as a journal for my children, I want them to know that nothing can replace the love and support of their family - immediate and extended. I have been blessed with an amazing family - a husband that adores me, loves me, would do anything for me, works so hard to keep this family running; 5 amazing children that teach me so much each day, teach me about patience, teach me about unconditional love, teach me about laughing and enjoy life, teach me about learning and growing and admitting my mistakes, and teach me about the love Heavenly Father and our Savior have for us. I have been blessed with wonderful parents that never quit being parents, that have helped me become who I am, that are the best grandparents in the world. I have been blessed with 5 amazing siblings that I call my best friends. I have grandparents that are so supportive and are such wonderful examples to my children and me. I have also been blessed to marry into an incredible family too. There are no inlaw jokes in this house. I couldn't have asked for a better set of second parents. I feel just as comfortable in their home as I do my parent's home. They love me and my children and are the best grandparents. I have wonderful brother and sister-in-laws, nieces and nephews, and grandmas that bring so much fun into our life. What a wonderful built in support system our Heavenly Father has given us!! I am thankful to know that families can be forever! I am thankful for my temple marriage and the knowledge I have that if we do our best to live worthy of the promised blessings, we can continue to be a family for eternity!!