Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Black and White Wednesday: {The Fountain}


There is a small fountain at the entrance of our community. Many mom's will take their kids there to play in the water. We had one hot day, amongst many rainy days, and so we decided to head over and enjoy the park.


The girls weren't too sure at first.


And they headed into the water slowly. They kept looking at me wondering if I would allow them to get wet...


The water was COLD and you never know how Lilah will react to a situation like this. But Zoe is a waterbug and was ready to jump right in.



Once they were in, I couldn't get them out. They laughed and laughed, which is something they are doing more and more of together as they grow closer.



You can't help but smile when you see such joy on their faces...

Learning to live in the present moment is part of the path of joy. -- Sarah Ban Breathnach


the long road

Saturday, June 25, 2011

The Funstation

Whether on land...


Or in the water...


This one source of entertainment...


Will keep my kids happy for hours!


And hopefully wear them out too...


Thursday, June 23, 2011

Summer Solstice


Summer gathered in the weather, the wind had the proper touch, the breathing of the world was long and warm and slow.-- Ray Bradbury

Picnik collage

The Summer Solstice: Summer has begun by the almanac, but the light is already leaning toward Fall.-- Hal Borland


Sunrise: 5:04 am

Sunset: 10:09 pm

Tim and I headed out on his kayak the other night at 10:15pm. The sun was just setting, the air was finally warm and the water was like glass.

Other than one other boat and some fishermen on the shore, we were the only ones out on the lake.

It was perfect.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Father's Day


Dad, your guiding hand on my shoulder will remain with me forever. ~Author Unknown



A truly rich man is one whose children run into his arms when his hands are empty. ~Author Unknown

My Dad.

*who doesn't like a grandpa that makes you laugh until you cry!

4 years: My Daddy can do anything!
7 years: My Dad knows a lot…a whole lot.
8 years: My father does not know quite everything.
12 years: Oh well, naturally Father does not know that either.
14 years: Oh, Father? He is hopelessly old-fashioned.
21 years: Oh, that man-he is out of date!
25 years: He knows a little bit about it, but not much.
30 years: I must find out what Dad thinks about it.
35 years: Before we decide, we will get Dad's idea first.
50 years: What would Dad have thought about that?
60 years: My Dad knew literally everything!
65 years: I wish I could talk it over with Dad once more.
~ Author Unknown

Tim's Dad.

*who doesn't like a grandpa who plays with trains!

Happy Father's Day!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Speech Therapy


This week was another appointment with Zoe's Speech Pathologist. She was so impressed with the improvements Zoe has made within even a few months.

Zoe's comprehension of the English language has improved a lot, as well, she is pronunciating her words more clearly all the time. She seems to have the most trouble with SH, S, TH and F sounds. When Zoe rambles off a long sentence, she can sometimes still be very difficult to understand. There were even a few times that I had to tell the SP what Zoe was saying. But for the most part, with one correction, Zoe would copy.

She was so cute to watch with the SP. She opens right up and dives right in. A room full of toys and books just might have something to do with it!


We will now be starting regular sessions with a speech therapist that is closer to our home.

I did find that a few of the tricks that the speech pathologist used are very helpful...

When she has trouble with one of her sounds, I will make this motion, she will mimic me, and say it properly usually the first try.




If anyone else has any tips that work for their cleft lip/palate afflicted children... please share!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Suture's Removed

Day 3 surgery

Day 5 Surgery


Today, Lilah had a little OR to remove all of her sutures. We can see her eye opening up and looking better every day. It will take about 6 - 8 weeks to see how it will look completely healed. Other than the scarring from the sutures, which will take a bit longer to fade.

Lilah before:

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Forty Years


June 5th marked forty years of marriage for my parents. And what amazing parents they are. They have taught me so much about relationships, God and family. My mom and I are very similar, which is slightly scary!


My parents have an amazing story. The were high school sweethearts, started dating at the age of 15. My mom came from a very traditional and strict Mennonite family, my dad came from a very different type of family, and these brothers were known as being quite wild. My mom's family did not approve, but my dad saw something in her family that he knew was different, something that he wanted.


My mom got pregnant with me at the age of 19 and they got married. Three years later, my dad became a Christian and his life completely changed. He gave up a job he loved and a brand new house and they moved us to a Bible School, where we lived in an old airplane hanger, so that my dad could become a pastor. Being a pastor is never easy and even though my dad loved the job, it was the people who made it continually difficult. My mom worked hard as well, through out these years to help out financially.


Every decision they made was for our family and was always in obedience to God's calling. It hasn't been easy. But now they are settled and they have two daughters who love and admire them both and so appreciate everything they ever gave and taught us.


I find it amazing how one persons choices in life can affect generations to come.

We are so blessed to have them as parents, and as grandparents to our children.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Lilah's Surgery


Waiting for surgery

Going to the OR - who knew it could be so much fun

Everything went really well and we are now home. Tim and I were talking about how we both had such PEACE all day today and know it is because of all the prayers surrounding us.

Lilah is one tough little girl. She is in pain. Mostly where she has stitches by her eye. We haven't actually peeled back her bandage yet to see what it looks like, we will later when we put in her eye drops. We have been warned that it will look very tight and somewhat puckered, but will loosen up. They also repaired her tear duct and we will see when everything heals, if it works properly. She had an "extra" tear duct (that didn't do anything) on her cheek and that is now gone.

Because the tissue expander wasn't in quite as long as they had hoped, the tissue didn't have time to grow enough fat underneath it, so right now her cheek will look a little bit flatter on her right side, compared to her left. The fat will grow and fill in over the next couple of months.

Lilah woke up crying for her daddy, so he was allowed into the recovery room.


On Thursday, we can remove her bandage and she can start wearing her glasses again. We will then patch her eye only at night to keep her from touching it.

On Monday, I will take her in to get the stitches removed and they will put her under anaesthetic once again to do that.

By tomorrow, we expect her to be very swollen and bruised. But we are so glad that it is done and would appreciate continued prayers for healing and no pain.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Medical Complications

This weekend while we were away celebrating my parents 40th wedding anniversary in Kananaskis, Lilah developed a small hole by her ear. We only noticed it because there was some clear fluid continually running down her face. The tissue expander (back by her ear) was glowing red and Tim quickly knew that there was an infection. We discovered all this while celebrating at dinner on Saturday night, and as soon as we were done, Tim took Lilah into Canmore to the ER. Luckily, the ER Doctor was very friendly and let Tim take control of what needed to be done.


Tim removed 10cc's of the saline in the expander, cleaned the wound and put Lilah on antibiotics. Once the hole is there it is next to impossible to close again. Each day it has become slightly bigger.


So this morning we headed off to see the Plastic Surgeon. Surgery is tomorrow morning, bright and early. Luckily, I have an amazing friend willing to take Zoe for the day! I am feeling very nervous and anxious and emotional right now. I don't really do well with surprises.

Lilah shouldn't need to spend the night, if all goes well. The tissue expander hasn't been in as long as they would have liked, so we are hoping for a great outcome, even though the skin could retract more than it would if we had done it on June 23rd as planned.

It is all in God's hands.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Summer Fun and a Surgery Date

Picnik collage2

After removing a multitude of spider webs, leaves and dirt, the girls enjoyed an afternoon playing in the water table out on our deck.

How I love these easy, carefree, warm summer days...

Zoe looks menacing in this photo, like she is truly enjoying drowning her Barbie!


Picnik collage

Lilah's surgery has been pushed up to June 23rd. We are much happier with this new date. The sooner the better. She will be in hospital for one night, the surgery will last for 2 1/2 hours. She will have many many many stitches across her cheek and face. But it will be worth it in the long run and we are thankful she doesn't have to go through the summer with the tissue expander in her cheek.

So looking forward to many more warm and carefree days!