Sunday, January 12, 2014

My Boys' Birthdays!

This time of year is exciting for us not only because of the holidays but because all of our birthdays take place as well.  First up: Eli on January 4th.  I had many different thoughts and emotions leading up to this day.  I was excited and nervous all at the same time not knowing how I would feel but also wanting to make sure we made it as happy a day as possible for him.  It was definitely happy!

I had the opportunity to spend the morning at a baptism for a man in our stake who's been investigating the church for a couple months.  I was fortunate enough to attend a few of his lessons with the sister missionaries and learned so much as I watched his spiritual growth.  Witnessing this man enter the waters of baptism definitely got me in the right mindset for what we had planned the rest of the day because it allowed me to have a much more eternal perspective.  

After the baptism we met our families at the cemetery where the kids had fun putting little toys on Eli's headstone.  Even though Eli never had a chance to do many "little boy" things, it made me so happy listening to his cousins talk about how much he loved playing with trucks because, naturally, that's what all little boys love.  We spent a few minutes talking and taking pictures before singing and releasing white balloons in honor of SCID awareness.  

There was a slight breeze that took the balloons as soon as we let them go so it seemed as though they were being taken straight to to Eli.  It really was a neat experience.



Afterwards we all went to lunch together and had a chance to reflect on the year.  My parents gave us each a gift "from Eli" that we loved.  I got a neat bracelet with Eli's name on it and Logan got a model airplane that says: "To My Daddy, Who Gave Me Wings To Fly.  Love, Eli" That couldn't be more accurate!

It's hard to believe Eli joined our family 1 year ago.  It feels like it was 10 years ago but I'm sure that's to be expected given what's gone on the last 12 months.   Although we had a wonderful day, I can't wait until we can celebrate all together.  Happy Birthday, little buddy!

**Many, many thanks to everyone for all the love and support on Eli's birthday!  It truly does make it so much more enjoyable having so many friends by our side.**

January 6: Logan's Birthday!
Some of you may remember that we were still in the hospital last year on Logan's birthday and I completely spaced it!  I couldn't believe I didn't remember until he said something about it halfway through the day.  To say I was mortified is an understatement.  I was bound and determined to make it up to him this year.  

During lunch I surprised Logan at work with some balloons and one of his favorite desserts: Kneaders' Fruit Tarts.  I didn't get to see him so I called him and asked him to take a picture but he wouldn't.  I know it made him happy though!

The treats were gone by the time he got home but at least I have a picture with the balloons!
After we both got home from work we went to Tucanos for dinner.  We both love it and always over eat.  Midway through dinner Logan said: "Please don't ask them to sing to me" so what's the next thing I ask our waitress to do?? Sing to him, of course!  I'm an awful wife.  I should have taken a video of them singing but I didn't even think about it.  They walked out yelling to the whole restaurant, shaking a tambourine and asked everyone to sing along while Logan stood up in front of everyone.  His face was priceless and I'm sure he still hasn't forgiven me!



We had a fun night and hopefully somewhat made up for last year's debacle!  Before my 
brother headed back to Minnesota we were able to celebrate Logan's birthday with my family so that was a lot of fun as well!  Happy Birthday, Rico!  Welcome to Club 24!

When all the kids were together for the holidays we were able to get this adorable picture of them.  Even better: This group will be expanded this year! (No, NOT by us!)

Left to Right: Adam (3) Tanner (7) Ben (3) Nathan (6) Klara (6) Will (9) Lily (1) Mady (8) Amelia (18 months) Not pictured but there in spirit: Eli (1) :)
Love you, little peanuts!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

So Long, 2013

What a year.  My feelings about last year are hard to put into words.  I experienced the most happiness I've ever felt but I have also never experienced more heartache.  I have never been tried more in my life yet I've never been more blessed.  My faith has never been shaken harder and my testimony has never been stronger.  I can't deny that I'm anxious to turn the page and see what our future holds but I am absolutely grateful for everything I experienced the last 12 months.   

So much of our lives is vastly different from how we thought it would be right now but I truly love what my life has become.  As a result of everything that happened last year, specific people and opportunities have come into my life that wouldn't have otherwise and I couldn't be more grateful for each one of them.  It's always said that God only gives you trials you can handle but I know I was given such a trial because my testimony was lacking in many ways and needed help.  If this is the price to pay to become closer to our Savior, I know it will be worth it.

Logan and I are a happy family of three but people often ask when we will get pregnant again.  'One day' is all we tell them.  We are happy, enjoying being with each other, and healing.  In time our desire to expand our family will be there but not right now.  Through medical technology we will have the blessing of ensuring our future children aren't affected with SCID and we are so grateful for that.

One thing Logan and I constantly talk about is how grateful we are for the endless amount of love and support we have received from the moment everything began last year.  Every single thing that was done on our behalf, no matter how big or small, was more critical to our strength and healing than any of you will ever understand.  We are able to put one foot in front of the other each day because of the help we continue to receive from everyone around us.  We hope to one day have the ability to repay each one of you that have been such a blessing in our lives.

We hope everyone has a fantastic new year!

When we were living in the hospital, we had the opportunity to be a part of the StoryCorps project with Primary Children's Hospital.  We had a roughly 1 hour interview where Logan was the interviewer and I was the interviewee.  Our interview was condensed into a 5 minute segment and posted to the hospital blog.  For those of you that didn't see it on Facebook a few days ago, you can listen to it below:

http://primarychildrenshospitalblog.org/2013/12/30/elis-battle-with-scid-a-parents-perspective/#comments
(If the link doesn't work for you, go to www.primarychildrenshospitalblog.org and scroll down until you find out story.)

Other random happenings...We had a fun New Year's Eve with my family playing games and eating lots of food!  My brother had to take his family back to Minnesota this morning and, as always, it was sad saying goodbye.  I'm going to miss this face!


Some of our good friends invited us to the Jazz game on Monday and it was my first time in a suite!  The new video boards are absolutely massive and no picture can do them justice.  Many thanks to the Neff family for the invite!


Here's to a happy and healthy 2014!