Monday, November 24, 2008

At peace

John D. Spalding: 02/20/1975 - 11/23/2008

words will come, but not just yet...

Friday, November 21, 2008

Give. Thanks.

For those of you who read this who know our friend John, I wanted to let you know that a benevolence fund has been set up to help his wife with the medical expenses John has incurred during his battle with cancer.

Go to any Bank of America to contribute to the 'John D. Spalding Medical Fund'.

Please pray for John as he likely has only a couple weeks left. Pray also for his wife, Jody, and all those who love him and will miss him so much.



have you ever seen anything sweeter than these two?
(that's nina for those of you who may not know her. she's my friend annie's little one and she's just about the cutest thing ever!)

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Thursday, November 20, 2008

mr. moon

Max had his preschool open house this week, which involved showing family around his classroom and then performing in a Mother Goose nursery rhyme program. He was the moon in the rhyme 'Hey Diddle Diddle'. He did a great job!

showing Ama & Papa the Colorful Carpet:

hand-in-hand with Ama & Mom-Mom, no better place to be than that:

showing Mom-Mom the bathroom (for some reason this is what he was most excited about showing off):

playing with daddy at the building station:

'don't look over at my family, don't look over at my family':post-show relief:
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hello world

Three of our dear friends have had babies this week, two on the same day! Say hello to the newest members of our community:

hello, graham:
hello, sonja:

hello, pearl:


For the first time in ages, I was able to go thrift shopping without the boys which meant I actually got to comb through racks and racks of women's clothes. It was the best feeling and I found some real gems. Here's a peek at my treasures:

granny sweater:

college sweater (I had nearly this same sweater 12 years ago, but darker blue):

red dots:

button-up dots:

for-better-or-for-worse jacket (reminds me of a jacket the mom from that comic strip wore):

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Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Thankful for our weekend away

This past weekend we headed to Port Angeles for a pre-Thanksgiving feast with Mark's family. Besides massive amounts of food, the weekend involved:

playing Wii:
wagon rides:



being held in safe arms:


deer watching:

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Friday, November 14, 2008

a sunrise kind of kid

Something my mom said to me a long time ago has really stuck with me. While up in Bellingham visiting my grandmother, I called my mom & grandma into the living room to see a really beautiful sunset. My mom said to me that she was so glad she had girls who would stop and share a sunset with someone. I have never forgotten that. And I think that has really informed how I'm trying to raise my boys. So it was with pure joy in my heart this morning that I was interrupted by Max's sweet, excited voice yelling 'Sunrise! Mommy look!' We ran to the window together & marvelled at the pink sky. Then he did something even more wonderful...he asked me to put him down & pick up Gus so that he too could enjoy the sunrise. I was so grateful for this moment after the difficult couple weeks Max & I have had together. So much arguing, so much all seemed to melt away as the sun rose up and brightened our day.

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Monday, November 10, 2008

a post-election post

Well, election season is over and I for one am thrilled. No more political ads, phone calls, junk mail...was it just me or was it completely over the top this year? Now as the dust settles, we all have to adjust to new changes...a new administration, new leaders, new taxes, new laws. Some things will be easier than others, we may not even notice them. Others will take more time, more effort. My votes didn't fare all that well, with a few exceptions. Seems most people in this city disagreed with me in large numbers on many things. So now it's time for me to work through that and I will, but that doesn't mean it's going to be easy.
Yesterday morning as the boys ate breakfast, I sat down at the computer with a cup of coffee. I went to our local radio station, KEXP's website to stream a segment of a show that I had missed the night before. Around 8:30pm Saturday night, my friend John, who is dying of terminal lung cancer, was a guest on the local music show Audioasis. He was talking about his project, Loveland, and debuting some of the songs from their record. While he's been working on it for some time, a lot of the work has been done recently, in the borrowed days of John's life. Days that weren't afforded by doctors' prognoses. You may remember my post a few months back, about a call I received from a friend, inviting me to a party in celebration of John's life. At that time, he had been given a month or two to live. But John's still here, making music, loving life, cherishing moments with his wife, his family, his friends. And listening to him on the radio, describing the meanings behind various songs, talking about his experiences, I thought about the election. I thought about how our state just passed a "death with dignity" law that allows someone with 6 months to live the opportunity to end their life. I thought about how many times over the past 5 years that John has fought against this cancer that the outlook was grim, how words like 'months to live' were thrown out there and how John has blown past every one of them. I was nearly in tears as he spoke about his music and how he was going to sell the songs via Myspace to raise money for his wife because after 5 years of chemo, surgery, radiation, medicine, doctor visits...there's nothing left. He spoke of how difficult it was to know that he's leaving his wife with nothing. But that is so far from true. She is left with memories of him, until his final day she gets to love him, to be near him, to hold his hand, to speak with him, to lay quietly and just hear him breathe. And I wonder, would the knowledge that his treatment was going to cost so much money, that he would be leaving his wife with "nothing", would that cause him to consider ending his life prematurely, just to spare her the financial burden? Now that we have this law, would it change how he sees himself? Would it cause him to wonder if it's "worth it" to keep living, knowing that the end is near? I'm horrified at what the passage of this initiative says to the terminally ill. I understand that it offers those in pain hope, I really do. But I also understand the unnecessary pressure that it puts on them to decide when death becomes the better option for those around them. And please know that I am completely conflicted about my position because I do believe in some sort of death with dignity law. After all, I watched my grandmother waste away slowly in a hospital because for some insane reason it was ethically permissible to deny her nutrients and allow her body to shut itself down, but completely out of the question to simply give her a lethal dose of medicine and let her slip away. It took weeks for her body to die, despite the fact that she was unconscious and already gone from us in our hearts. Still, we had to wait and watch and hurt and it was brutal. At that point, yes, I am for a dignified, quick death. But six way. In six months, being terminally ill and sometimes barely able to climb a flight of stairs, John has thrown an amazing party, made an amazing record, gone away to a poker party and cooked for a big group of men (my dad included), touched hundreds of lives just by being John and by living, by refusing to give up. I hope he knows that the passage of this law doesn't mean his life isn't worth it. It doesn't mean he's a burden or that he should give up. Keep living John. You are a blessing to so many and your voice, like your music, should play on.

Friday, November 7, 2008


Two of my dearest friends are expecting babies this month. Here's a look at what I made them. The first (really bad) photo is a paper cut I did of my friend Megan's family. It sort of happened by accident & there are definitely ways to improve the process, but I'm really happy with how it turned out.

The next set of (equally bad) photos are of a bird mobile I made for my friend Jessica's little girl's room. I found the idea and pattern here. I was so happy with how this turned out as well. Truthfully, it looked really good hanging in my dining area, so I may have to make one for myself. (yeah right.) Thanks to Rebecca for helping me get the birds done in time!

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Wednesday, November 5, 2008

We have a new president...

and his name is Luke Skywalker! That's right, in our house, President-elect Skywalker defeated Darth Vader in a landslide. Skywalker's sister, Princess Leia, will be joining him as VP, while C3PO and R2D2 make up the rest of his cabinet.
How did this come to be, you ask? While waiting in the car outside Mark's polling location, Max began asking me questions about voting, so I set up an election for him and let him vote. Once he'd elected his president, he had to appoint other leaders and there you have it. Our house is now ruled by the Republic. May the Force be with us.