family pic

family pic

Friday, December 24, 2010

the aesthetic of christmas 2010

This year the aesthetic of Christmas is quiet the picture. I have really grown to love this vintage home, and the designs i have chosen for it. Of course there is loads more that i would like to do to it, but i really am adoring its darlingness, {hope that doesnt sound full of arrogance} so our cozy home Christmas is aesthetically desirable for those of us living in it. two of my fav spots...

the piano area next to the tree, and of course the 2010 Christmas card collection. Love getting these!

it also includes a little magic as always ...

here you will find "buddy" our elf on the shelf, who actually looks oddly more like a girl then a boy, but who flies away each night to who knows where because here there is major confusion with just only one of us in regards to "santa" and things of this nature. But finding him each morning brings a smile to her face and joy to her heart so it works ...

the other magic just arrived last night. its my new home gnome ... i couldnt be more thrilled! thanks amy!

As many of you know i am a cautious santa supporter, but if i am gonna have him inside my home, i like him this way! and our tree for the year. Much like last year i wanted to pair the orange up against our blue walls. We added a few things including some zebra striped turkey feathers, and really they made all the difference. and yes i know i know that there is loads of gifts down there ... but keep in mind my perspective on santa. i really want this holiday to be about Christ, its true intention & recipient, so its ok that all those gifts from loving parents and friends are already under there.

the internal aesthetic of the season has been a little less refined and a little more chaotic! We are busy as usual as stock continues to pave his own wrestling career, storie swims her little heart out and performs violin and saylor happily throws at us a challenge here and there and begging to ski. Nate is busy at work and i am busy with work and all the new changes at UBB, new puclication's and recent accomplishments. But the season is about family, and this year its about extended family, our love for them and their need for us at this time. The last few weeks have brought hair pulling frustration, sobbing sorrows, and much joy and gratitude. But for front in my personal emotion is my brother joey ...

A few weeks back after months of struggling with pain and misdiagnosis we found out that Joey has cancer. I have been able to do little but stand idly by, and bend my knees in prayer. But its been a roller coaster, i am dizzy and at times nauseous and i am just watching. He had surgery only a few days ago to place protective rods in his hips and femur bone as they are quickly being affected by the cancer. Chemo will start soon and the ride will continue to move at fast pace, of this i am sure. So he has brought to me a renewed sense of perspective that i hope will also teach me a little more of the lessons i need to learn.

and for now its time to go spend some time with my not so little anymore ones and the hub who is home for one rare occasion ... Merry Christmas to all! and to all a good night ...

Friday, December 17, 2010

This brought a smile & i needed a few more this week .....

Friday, December 10, 2010

tuesdays w/morrie . pot pie . hips . uglies. wrestling . and santa

This is gonna be a multi-faceted, multi-topic, multi-visual kind of long but hopefully fun to read post. I have several things to update the blog with and it seems that i rarely can get to posting so ill just throw it all at ya now since i have some time and energy ...

first last tuesday, a tuesday with morrie.

A respected friend used to always tell me "be where your supposed to be when your supposed to be there" and that has really stuck with me. I think about it often when i am doing something i shouldnt, or am somewhere i shouldnt be. Even when i have two good choices of things to do, but i know which needs me more. I really think adding to that "doing what your supposed to be doing" is suiting to how this simple concept helps me along my way.

{disclaimer .. this story is sweet, but kind of dumb ... relevant though. I frequent the DI. I know many of my friends & readers know this, and i know this place kind of creeps some of you out, in fact i really want to a do a DI post so you no longer will be creeped out, but then that would let you all in on my secrets, so rather i think ill leave things as they are.}

So i was at DI last tuesday looking through the book section {one of my fav spots}, as if shopping is really "being where your supposed to be, or doing what your supposed to be doing" but actually it sometimes is that simple, it is what your supposed to be doing. This elderly woman began talking with me about how she came to find a specific book and was having such a hard time finding it, that she was doubtful it would be there but really wanted it. Of course what followed for me was what book she was looking for. A worthy read ... Tuesdays w/Morrie. I told her i would keep my eyes out for it as i scanned the shelves. She was scanning the same shelves i was, just a step ahead of me. But as i came to the shelf she had just passed as we concluded our conversation i found the book she so earnestly was seeking. I was so excited, i popped up to find her and shouted i found your book. Notice that i instinctively said, i found YOUR book. It was her book, all along, BUT I was meant to find it. I had such a strong feeling that i was where i was supposed to be. it felt so confirming and peaceful that i was doing at least something right. A simple thing, heartwarming non the less. I was a tool that day in the Lord's hand to fulfill something for another daughter of God. I really like being a tool!

The very next day I was the recipient of an act of service. Wednesday was super emotional for me. I just couldnt seem to hold myself together. There were some major concerns about my siblings for front in my mind, and just sadness about the hardships they were facing. A little drama accompanied some problems and it was just more then i could take and so i melted apart, letting all the emotion of saylors recent leg length discrepancy and what that would entail, going to clinic, the anticipation and some self motherly loathing all just take me over. Just as i crashed emotionally everyone was wanting dinner and congregating in the kitchen. {another disclaimer, i dont like to cook, i am not bad at it per say, i just dont like it. so having dinner planned and prepared is a HUGE deal for me and i had been doing really well at staying on top of this as of late.} and i had nothing planned or prepared for them. Just as my mind started to go into survival mode "what am i gonna feed the rats?" the door bell rang. and on my porch was a freshly home made pot pie. with this note ...

" dear o'briens, I realize that we may have not gotten this to you in time for dinner tonight, (laughing while crying insert here) but we hope that this chicken pot pie might help your week be a little bit easier. You can refigerate it for a couple of days but it is best fresh. Bake at 425 for 35 min."

I slowly while sobbing walked straight from the door to the oven and preheated. I really had only talked to one friend about the going ons of the day and my emotional catastrophe, and a few family members, all of which i could account for at that exact moment. I had this distinct whispering that it was someone closer to me, like in my neighborhood. Which brought more tears, because you see i dont feel so fit in here. After i preheated the oven i promptly walked down the hall to kneel in prayer. I learned in mere seconds, or re-learned a several lessons that are even more priceless then dinner. A reminder of so many things, including how aware my Heavenly Father is of MY needs. This tool had brought more then dinner to me!

The pot pie was incredible, beyond anything i could muster together on my best cooking day! but beyond that i hope that someday somehow this kind inspired person will embrace the huge blessing of service they provided to me and my family by this simple act. that it meant far more then they likely intended and blessed me personally immensely, that they will have that feeling that they are indeed doing what they are supposed to be, when and where they are supposed to be!

This is not saylors hip. but i had to provide some sort of visual effect, and this will do, even though its likely an old ladies with arthritis. So saylors hips have both been dislocated since birth. or even prior to that actually, since her creation. We consulted several docs back in the day about this issue, all felt that in her particular circumstances and additional challenges that really if they were both bilateral this wasnt a bad thing at all. to leave them both out. so we went with it. least of our worries in regards to her.

A few weeks ago i noticed that her left leg was a tad longer then her right. After consulting SB clinic coordinator about this i realized this could be a bigger issue then i had first thought. and the panic mounted each and every day before we finally got answers. We have always been told that there is a possibility we could have growth problems, with so many significant orthopedic surgeries behind her. So i am thinking logically for some reason one leg has been affected and the other has not. and she is gonna have major problems because one leg is gonna be longer then the other for the rest of her life, as one grows and the other doesnt. Of course i am thinking the worst right, i am her mom, its what i do, brace for the possibilities. Its usually primarily internal thought. I try to exhibit a positive attitude. I watch her ski, or walk last week in almost devastation that we may be taking a step back. anxious and nervous. It did occur to me in the middle of the week it could be a hip problem, and that would make sense as well. So i hoped for the best knowing it could be any range of things. Clinic brought that confirmation that it is indeed her hip.

See how this hip is in its socket? well saylor doesnt have hips in socket they wander elsewhere. I thought maybe one had relocated and found its place but nope they are still both out, but for some reason one has found a new home a little higher then it once used to be. Its anyone's guess how this occurred. She doesn't seem to be in pain or have sustained an injury. so for now if she is not in any pain and is minimally affected we wait and go on with our seemingly fairly normal lives, at least for the time being.

Non the less she continues to teach me through these experiences valuable life lessons as we go on this journey together. and as nate would say ... her hips dont lie!

Back to tuesday at DI. I too picked up a piece of literature i had long been desiring that day. I have been on hold for this first book in a trilogy for a several weeks and dont seem to be moving up the list fast enough. I came across this for 50 cents and was ecstatic! I love to read and i was craving a good new escape. I had it finished promptly as you could have guessed. It was a good easy read, captivating and fun. I am not a big fan of science fiction but i can do it in this type of format. The deeper idea behind the uglies is really what intrigues me. Why are they ugly? what is ugly? and the human race. One of my thoughts though was about saylors imperfect and deformed body. How when it came time to "fix" her feet i was a total mess, because her feet were beautiful to me! i didnt want to fix them anymore. I could really relate on a deeper level with the words between the lines on this one. Its a recommended read and those of you that have read it likely get what i am saying. Good escape ... cant wait to read pretties, and specials. Found specials for 50 cents too ... see without even doing a DI post i am convincing you! dont go there ... dont go there .. dont go there ... subliminal!

A little wrestling recap on how the season has been going. We have had some ups and downs. Stock had been fighting the brutal cold we all have at some point. In washington he took 5th. then the next week he took 1st at one tournament and the next day took 2nd. then last weekend he wrested again in two divisions, his own age and jr high. in his own age he took 1st and in jr high bracket he took 2nd. just in case you dont recall he is 9!

and a little holiday-ness ... lets have a santa chat. then ill wrap things up cause your about sick of me if your still reading ... which i doubt you are.

last sat the girls and i went to Hollywood connections. Somewhere we had never been before. Still nauseous thinking about watching the girls on the rides. Anyhow it was for an Angels Hands xmas party. the boys were away at wrestling as usual. This is the girls on a ride that i actually went on with them, seriously i did really think i was gonna vomit. they had a blast it was a great day. We also saw megamind that day {not recommended unless its $1:}

The previous night we were at a ward party that included santa. A weighty topic in our house as of late actually. Tuesday saylor had asked a lot of santa/Jesus questions and had long talks with both nate and I. and in fact as a family sort of the theme of our year has been making that final transition with her about believing. {disclaimer .. yes another one, this is just what we have decided we want for our family, i know this is such an opinionated subject and trust me i respect what other options there are in way of this controversy.} She is the last of our kids to realize that santa is just a symbol, that the spirit is magical but that santa is not indeed real. Storie and stock have known this for some time now, they knew even younger then her, but i suppose we have hung onto the magic a little longer with her for obvious reasons. The time has come though ... and frankly i think this clears up all the confusion about seeing one santa one min and another another min. like this weekend for example, santa at the ward party, santa at the angel hands party, and yet another santa at hollywood connections. hmmmmm 24 hours and 3 very different santa's??? I love that she knows, i love how she is now wondering who that particular santa really is? But more then that i love that we can focus on what is real to us and what we believe as a family and what xmas is really about, CHRIST.

its still fun though right? so all our presents are under the tree, they know who they come from and why they come. and thats all she wrote for today ... and probably weeks to come so enjoy!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

we have been busy this year!

Image courtesy of the fantastic mrs. darla roze!

Many of our xmas cards have gone out, one of my favorite things to send and even better to get this time of year! {Dont stress if you still havent gotten yours, i am still working on getting a few more out! and if you think you might not be on my list but want to be, well then send me a quick message!} So i thought this would be a good time to share a little bit about whats behind this years picture.

Nate & I have gotten older, and less photogenic so we were very reluctant to participate in any image that would be shared with 150 of our closest friends and family. But we are more then happy to share our gorgeous kids! But we wanted to do something a little different. Something that really showed without words what we are about these days ... and so we came up with this. Each kid is pretty decked out in just about everything that keeps us all busy!

I called up a great friend of mine and we ventured out to her studio for a quick shoot. Love what she captured! thanks darla!

And for those that read our blog, a written update on exactly what it is that they have been up to!

Miss Storie Kate ..Busy Busy and ever so talented. She is proving to have that natural Nate athletic ability in her. She is swimming on the UVrays swim team, which requires a workout in the pool every single day! She entered the swim team on team A and quickly progressed and advanced to team B where she is now. Its only been a few short months but she continues to enjoy it and is doing really well, we expecially love to go to the meets and watch her compete, it's comfortable for us, not that much different then a wrestling tournament, individual sports both structured similarly! We switched violin teachers this year and that has resulted in drastic improvements! We are really enjoying the new way to progress in this talent & its been fun to have her play xmas music these last few weeks. And then what she is most excited about and anticipating with a bit of bait in her breath .. snowboarding, which means she has a little bit of me in her too! She cant wait to hit the slopes, and I cant wait to hit them with her. She will be doing the school boarding program at sundance on fridays again this year where someone other then me can teach her new skills! And she is a 5th grader, so this means ski utah pass! cant wait to hit several resorts with her for some fun in the snow!

Stock ..... This kid keeps us running and his dad busy nearly full time. With everyone so busy I usually handle the girls, Nate usually deals with all of stocks needs along with his coaching commitments. We are in the thick of wrestling season right now! He is doing really well and we have been really blessed with some great new training opportunities. He just returned home from a tournament in washington. He hits wrestling practice every day for usually 2-3 hours and tournaents pretty much every weekend. He is thriving though and loves it, he is really self motivated and committed. several jr highs have asked to have him at practice and duals and i think nate has settled on mt view for the time being, just part time outside of already private club team training. I know your asking are we pushing? in reality the kid is pushing us! He finished up football a few weeks back but thats the other true sport love of his life! and when he is not wrestling he likely still continues to have a football in his hands. Baseball was a big part of our spring summer life, it was his first year but like his dad he soon was one of the top athletes in the league for his age, so when the snow melts he & nate will return back to the batting cages and baseball will begin. Stock did swim over the summer on the provo pikes team but its not his love, its a matter of conditioning only!

Little Saylor Jae ... she is a pretty busy cat too! This summer she played wheelchair tennis, and the fall brought a little season of wheelchair basketball. Both of which i can hardly fathom. Just think about how hard it would be to manuever a racket, chair, ball, and body? seriously, but she seems like a natural at it all and took to it well. OF course her coach quickly became smitten with her attention and dedication for her age and natural obrien athletic ability. She is very sad that they are both over! Ski season has begun and saylor couldnt be more thrilled! she is so extatic to be back on the slopes! We had our first of the season lesson yesterday and she did so well! had such a good non surgery year, got so strong that she improved drastically over the summer! She is now skiing with outriggers and is becoming more and more independent. Its so emotional, and yet lovely to watch my dreams and her own dreams come true and work towards something so amazing like skiing. I am so grateful for wasatch adaptive sports and how they have changed our lives!

On a stressful note ... saylor actually physically is experiencing some new challenges. for a good amount of time she has been stable and nearly problem free. only a few hiccups here and there that actually resulted in not much of a problem afterall. I am hoping that this too might be that same way but am also bracing myself for something more. We have recently noticed that one of her legs is longer then the other. It could be as simple as a hip reloccation on one side or as difficult as one leg not growing as a result of so much early on orthopedic surgery, which would in turn present some major physical problems. We will know a lot more at the end of next week.That ever so familiar {yet havent felt in a while} feeling is back in my heart, stomach, and head. Its a bit daunting, being out of practice. But i am sure we will find our way across this bridge too!

as nate and i were settling into bed last night we were watching the news and a story came on about a family that was really really busy with "extra" activities in their kids life. The question behind he story was how busy is too busy and what are the adverse affects? i just laughed because i understood! But our perspective has always been lead by the kids themselves rather then us, with our motivation, and encouragement behind anything that was in fact good for them. A busy kid, is usually a good kid, who is learning a lot about life's lessons early. So as busy as it is, this is beautiful to me! Its so much fun to watch this all unfold and to watch them succeed ... i couldnt be happier then i am right now, life seems as it should be and this is what i imagined parenting at its best to feel like. it feels so good.