Saturday, June 30, 2012

These videos keep me smiling

We are still in Dallas looking at a zillion houses with our heads spinning. But these videos on my phone from the previous couple of days are keeping me smiling!

This one is Trent and his brother Jeff competing in one of the Just Dance songs on the Xbox with Kinect gaming system.

And this one is of the two of them boxing against each other.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Remembering my Mom

It has been a year since she passed away. I had a crazy day today. We are in the Dallas Area househunting. My phone would buzz. First it was a reminder from my daughter's calendar that today was the one year mark -- Who knew that she put it on her calendar????

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Then it was the little memories people would share on facebook.

Then it was the emails.

There was always a little buzz that meant a new story or memory had been shared. I would read it on my iphone, smile a little, tear up a little, and then look at yet another house.

Here are just some of the memories I read today.

From her best fried from high school, Randy-

Two weeks ago today I attended the 40th Sanger High School reunion of the class of 1972. Many of the other students asked me detailed questions about Candy and were shocked to learn of her death. At one point there was silence for the 31 missing classmates who were deceased from the class of 1972. I don't think there was a dry eye in the room.

On Sunday morning I had breakfast with friends from high school who also knew Candy very well, Scott Nishioki, Tom Uribes and Tony Biasell. The gathering was to remember Candy and our teacher Mr. Peoples. Mr.People was the high school journalism teacher. But more than being our teacher, he gave us a safe playground during our high school years to have fun and explore life without getting into trouble. It was a true age of innocence when I think of the late nights we spent in room 1 without an adult having fun, hours in the dark room developing film and printing pictures, spending summer evenings together decorating the room for our senior year painting it in psychedelic colors and designs.

We spent 3 hours together and we still had more to say and share. One story that Tom remembered was that he, Candy and myself had gone to Fresno on a Saturday night for some type of photo shoot at the Del Webb hotel. (Tom was the school photographer for the yearbook and newspaper.) For some reason we crashed a party doing what Tom described as a "Mexican Polka" and cleared the floor dancing with both me and Candy. He said he got a little private lesson outside of the ballroom and then all three of us danced the night away. 40 years after our high school graduation many of the memories were as sweet now as they were then. After we had breakfast we went over to Scott's home in Fresno to wish his 91 year old mother, Faye, happy birthday. She still does all of her own yard work, which is perfect, and cuts and styles hair in a salon close by. An amazing woman.

Scott had in his closet a few pictures of Candy that he finally was willing to part with and sent them home with me. I will mail them to Craig once I get a folder large enough. There is one that says "Porker" on it under the picture of Candy. We would all go to Farewells Ice Cream Parlor together after an evening out, Scott, Duane, Candy and myself, and eat what was called the "Trough" which fed 4 people. The word porker does not refer to the size of Candy, only to the enjoyment of the ice cream. I think that nick name stuck in high school. These were wonderful memories with Candy before her life as a wife and mother, but I am sure had some influence on the wonderful woman Candy was and the lives she touched. There may be more pictures surface as time goes on. Tom, having been the photographer had a folder full of pictures that only he knew about and has kept since high school. Tom now is the media director for Fresno State College, Tony is the director of a Christian Camp called Calvin Crest close to Fresno and Scott lives in Washington DC and is a 30 year veteran on the hill working for various assemblymen from the Fresno area as a legislative aid and lobbyist at one time for a communications company. Scott said that Candy and her family were the only people who ever came and visited him in DC. As always, Candy did not miss a beat in living a full life.

From her sister Penny,

Candy was nearly perfect, however there were a few incidents growing up that showed a little different side to her. When we were little, she would come up behind us and pull our hair and then run screaming to Mom. Now , who do you think got in trouble? Actually, that is the only such memory I have. All my other memories are of a sweet, patient, kind, and supportive sister.

A few years ago, my friend Dottie, went to Houston with her hubby, who was having cancer treatments. I called Candy and asked if she could check in on them from time to time. Candy, being Candy, did far more than that. She took Dottie under her wing, and visited and provided meals for the few months that they were there. She involved the R.S. sisters in helping to provide meals. She took Dottie places she needed to go. I felt such love for my sister as she lovingly provided this service for someone she didn't even know. Dottie has told me over and over again, how much she appreciated Candy's love and concern for her.

When I spent some time living with Dan's parents, Candy and Craig were still in Utah finishing up school. Candy was my refuge in the storm. It was so hard to have two little boys to take care and no Dan to help me. My father in law was ill and eventually hospitalized, so Mom J. had to focus on his care. I would go over to Candy's in the morning and take care of Jamie while she went to school and then talk and visit with her when she got back. I don't think I would have survived nearly as well, if I hadn't had her love and support.

Candy has always been the voice of reason. I find myself asking all the time, "How would Candy react to this situation?" "How would she handle this problem?" So even beyond the grave, she's helping me to be a better person.

I was able to go and be with her for three weeks last October as she began her chemo treatments. We did some projects together and I thought "How fun it would have been to live closer to her and do projects together." That was such a choice time to be there with her. Often when I would come out of my room, she would be kneeling beside her bed having her morning prayer. One day as we were talking, she told me "I'm okay with what ever the Lord has in store for me." What a woman of faith and inspiration.

All of us sisters were there when Candy got the news that she wasn't going to make it. I have never seen anyone face such a pronouncement with the courage and acceptance that she did. How difficult it must have been for her to know that she would be leaving her husband, and children, especially Tyler and of course all of her beautiful grandchildren for a season. As I sat with her on the couch holding her hand knowing it would be the last time until we meet again, I felt tremendously blessed that the Lord allowed such a beautiful person, inside and out, to be my sister.

I will forever miss you and always love you. Get those projects lined up for when we meet again. Does having your body restored in all of it's glory, mean that you will now have talents like Candy had on this earth? I can't wait to find out!!!!!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

No Pressure . . . We just HAVE to find a house

Trent and I are off. No, it is not some romantic getaway. It is for 3 full days of house hunting in the Dallas area. Nothing like a little pressure . . .



Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Provo, Utah

We took the kids down to Provo for the day. It was fun to walk around BYU's campus, reminisce, and see all our old stomping grounds. It seems to change more and more every year.


We ate at the creamery on 9th.

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

and then later that evening met up with one of Trent's old roommates, Ryan Moore and his wife Heather. They had also been neighbors of ours and in our married ward!

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Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Lots of family photo shoots

While in Utah, I took the family photos for all of Trent's siblings and his parents.  It was really fun to do.  I can't wait to see them all hanging up on the wall in Trent's parents home!









Monday, June 25, 2012

The rest of the slideshows

Heidi and Aaron Baker

Valerie and Bryan Peterson

Jennie and Russ Emery

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Slideshows from the photoshoots part 1

I really like making slideshows with the photos taken in my photo shoots. I just live giving a place to all the great shots that might otherwise not be printed and hung on your wall but are nevertheless great photos! I think adding a song just puts it all together so nicely and tells a great story. I use to create all my slideshows.

Jeff and Amber Handy

Melissa Handy

Nelson and Becky Yates

Lynn and Sandra Handy -- Trent's parents

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Our plane ride to Utah put into a video

I made a bunch of videos that will be played each evening at our family reunion. Here is the one I made for our family.

Friday, June 22, 2012

The FASB softball game

It should have been a great game. But it rained and thundered and we went to post corner pizza instead.

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Thursday, June 21, 2012

School's (finally) out for the summer!

It only took until June 21st for school to be out for the summer -- but we finally made it.

Now we can start sleeping in. Owen had the right idea this morning. He got up, we got him dressed, and then he wanted to get back in bed with Daddy. Before I knew it he was back asleep.

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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

2 weeks later -- the X-ray

Catherine's bones are indeed growing back together. It is great to hear again, "NO NEED FOR SURGERY!" She continues to attempt to take it easy (not something she particularly excels at). On the plus side she did get a new sling -- the off white one was looking pretty grungy already!

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Owen making Animal Sounds

He is so much fun to have around here. Have a peek at the silly things that make me smile all day long!

Monday, June 18, 2012

What a difference 12 years makes!

It is amazing how much has changed in 12 years! She is not a little baby anymore. She is a grown up young lady. You rocked our world back then and probably always will!


Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Father's Day

This blog post is for all of the Dad's in my life. Since you didn't get a card from me-- this will have to do for this year.

 To Trent -- Can you believe 12 years ago you first became a dad? I can't. We are on the roller coaster of parenting together. Sometimes it is fun, sometimes it is scary, sometimes it is crazy busy, sometimes it is slow and calm (you know -- like right before the big hills), but one thing's for sure it is always moving and the perspective is always changing.


To my Dad -- I always knew I could do anything because if I didn't know how to do it you would teach me-- and you did -- driving, calculus, chemistry, using a drill press, throwing a ball, free throws, but mostly just how to have fun and not take life too seriously.

1976 001
To my Father-in-law -- You have always given Trent and I the best support from day 1 - like taking our engagement pictures (this photo is an outake from that day)! -- Thanks for welcoming me and always being there.

I really knew 3 of our grandpa's and now 2 of them are gone and one of them is battling Alzheimer's.  It is amazing how often I recall things that each of you taught me.



Saturday, June 16, 2012

Julianne's birthday party

I kept it pretty low-key this year. We just took her and some of her friends out to dinner. It was quite enjoyable. The girls had a great time.

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

Friday, June 15, 2012

Fourth Grade Fair thee well

Today Catherine graduated from her Elementary school.  They don't call it a graduation-- they sing some songs and the principal reminds them to work hard and be kind.



Then it was a celebration at "The Outback" -- a youth activity center in town. These were some pretty excited kids!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Good Bye Melissa

Tonight I spent the evening at my good friend's home.  Melissa is moving in a few weeks to North Carolina.

I remember first meeting her at East School.  Her daughter Anna and my Catherine are the same age and were fortunate to be in the same class 4 years in a row (really amazing!).  She introduced herself to me, asked where I lived, replied that she lived right by me. (and I took her word for it, because I truly did not know my way around enough to know for sure) and she gave me her business card -- (she has one for being a full time mother!)

Our friendship developed slowly.  She has always been there for me with wise advice and a listening ear.  We ran some together in the early morning.  She tolerated my terrible tennis playing.  And sometimes we could go weeks without seeing eachother -- because that is just how life is with busy kids and busy families.

I'm in denial that July 7th is right around the corner.  Really gonna miss having you just around the corner.





Wednesday, June 13, 2012

The broken humerus -- update

The bone is growing. She will always have a little bump on her upper arm that one can feel but cannot see. The doctors were pleased with the progress. I am amazed she didn't bump it (as Catherine takes nothing "slow"). But still -- the X-ray looks rough!

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

The crack line is less visible and there is a half moon of new growth starting on the top to straighten and elongate that area and "remodel" it how it is supposed to be.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Anyone moving to CT?

I know a fabulous home to buy or rent!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

The Notary

There is no picture for this post. I should go to the library and take a photo of the public notary there. Today Trent and I took all of our home closing papers and partner papers -- she had to notarize 28 things. She kept saying, "I think this meets my annual quota." I kept thinking, "Are we done yet? Owen is trying to pull all the books off the shelf!"

We are sadly and happily selling our home in Katy, TX.

We have such fond memories there. But it is going to a great family and that makes me very happy!


Saturday, June 9, 2012

We are moving to Dallas!

Everything is all official these days. We are excited. We are sad to leave our friends and our comfort zone. So, Dallas -- here we come!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Out with the family!

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Nothing in the world like a nice summer evening in CT.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

The Flour Game

We played this as kids fairly often. Haven't played it for a long time. Essentially you pack flour into a bowl or mug or mold of some kind and then place a penny on top. Each player takes a butter knife and cuts away a little flour. The person who knocks the penny into the flower must retrieve it with their teeth.

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Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

Baby Deer

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I have seen two little brand new babies. Despite hating having deer all around -- I will admit the newborn's are pretty cute!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Catherine's humerus adventure. . .

1:10 p.m. -- I am sitting in the home depot parking lot waiting for Heather. She is buying PVC pipe cutters and has run in momentarily.

1:11 p.m. -- My phone rings. (my remarks are highlighted in yellow)
        "Hi Mrs. Handy.  There has been an accident on the playground and Catherine is just leaving in an ambulance to go to the Norwalk hospital ER.  Can you meet the ambulance there?"
         "What happened to Catherine?"
        "She fell off the monkey bars and hurt her shoulder?"
         "Is she unconcsious?"
         "Can you stop the ambulance?"
         "I don't think so.  I think it is just pulling out."
         "Run.  Stop the ambulance.  I DO NOT WANT my daughter taken to the ER.  I will be  
         there in less than 10 minutes."
         "You don't want her to go in the ambulance?"
         "No, please go stop the ambulance if you can."

At this point Heather was back in the car.  We started driving to the school.  In the meantime I called (using my hands free) our pediatrician's office and told them I would be bringing Catherine in for immediate X-Rays following an accident at recess.

We arrived at the school at 1:18 p.m. (I might have driven a little on the fast side.)

Nearly all the administrative staff is outside in the back where the ambulance has pulled right onto the playground.

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I sign a "refusal of care" form and load Catherine in the van.

At 1:20 we arrive at the doctor's office.  Heather drops Catherine and I off and then drives the boys to my house where I have a babysitter (not because of the accident but because I was supposed to go to the hospital to take birth photos for a friend who was being induced.)

Heather arrives back at the doctor's office around 2:00 just when we get these X-Rays back.

the good arm

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App
the not so good arm
While we can tell that the bone is broken the X-Rays are not detailed enough to determine a treatment.

We are referred to a pediatric orthopedist, given our films and told to rush there. (and not to give Catherine any food or water as she will most likely be having surgery soon).

I drop Heather off at her home (it is on the way) and drive to the Orthopedist's office.  I finally get a hold of Trent who also meets us there (it is right by his work).

They do additional X-rays.

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

The orthopedists consult.  The Humerus is completely broken.  The top ball is displaced about 11%.  They advise that when the displacement is less than 25% they opt to not due surgery in children who are still growing and allow the bone time to re-adhere and remodel itself.  Right now surgery and pins are more likely to damage the growth plate.  She is to be on total rest.  No bumping or jostling the shoulder.  No lying down (even to sleep).  No movements.  The only thing to help is a sling as they cannot cast that area.

At 4:20, we leave the orthopedist.  Trent takes Catherine and picks up some pain meds and heads home to relieve the babysitter.  I head to the hospital where I make it in time for my friend's new baby!!!!

It all worked so smoothly and everyone was taken care of.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Julianne's 6th grade band concert

The band really makes such significant improvements at each successive band concert.  This time even playing some recognizable songs!

Monday, June 4, 2012

The Results -- The Pawling Triathlon


I am really pleased with how I did this year at the triathlon. I have learned so much and have gotten in better shape. I still have so much room for improvement, but it is nice to see that I have improved. This picture shows my sister Carrie and I crossing the finish line together! I started a wave ahead of her -- so she is 3 minutes faster than me -- She caught me with about a mile left of the run. It was so fun to run in the rain together and finish the race!

Event                 2011 time  (Female 35-39) I was 35                  2012 time (Female 35-39) I was 36
1/3 mile swim              14:18                                                                         13:28
Transition 1                  3:40                                                                           2:26
12 mile bike ride            1:04:00                                                                      48:06
Transition 2                   1:35                                                                            1:35
5K                               41:05                                                                         37:37

Now a little commentary -- In 2011, I did the swim without having swam a day in the previous year.  This year I went to the pool 8 times between Jan and Jun -- I do think that I could really improve my swim -- my goal for next year is 12:20.  In 2011, my overall swim rank was 258/415 (or 62% -- so the lower half of the competition)  In 2012, my overall swim rank was 214/428 (or 50% -- that is a good improvement!)

I was considerably quicker on my first transition this year (since last year I forgot my bike helmet and had to go back) -- I do think I could practice and get this down -- Additionally I would really love to do the swim without the wet suit (this year it was cold and rainy) maybe next year?  My goal for next year is 1:50.  Interestingly my 2011 rank was 331/415 (80% -- the lower quarter of competitors).  This year 2012 I was 179/428 (42% -- in the upper half of participants -- who knew I could change out of a wetsuit faster than half the group!)

The bike was a major improvement for me.  Last year I did the 12 miles on a mountain bike.  Additionally I did no significant bike riding to prepare.  My time of 1:04 was the last place on the bike 418/418.  While last place is nothing to be proud of -- I had to take it as a personal milestone -- doing it on a mountain bike was unbelievably difficult.  This year I was ranked 373/428 (87% -- still the lowest quartile of participants).  It was the first time (during the race) where I had ridden a road bike.  I struggled to figure out the gear shifting (although by mile 9 I had it down).  I had attended a spin class once a week for 3 months to prepare.  Here is where I hope to really improve-- I would like to get to the upper 50% on this one -- which means a bike time of about 40 minutes -- My goal is 39:00.

My second transition was identical both years 1:35.  2011 put me 217/418 (51.9%) and 2012 was 137/428 (32% -- my highest ranking of the whole race!!!!).  Next year my goal is 1:20.

Lastly the 5K -- 2011 I was ranked 400/418 (96%)  this year was 409/428 (also 96% despite dropping 4 minutes).  Clearly this is the area where I need to really work the most.  My goal next year is 32 minutes.

My overall rank in 2011 was 410 / 418.  (98% -- only 2%-- or 8 people in the competition finished behind me!

This year my overall rank was 371/428  (87% with 13% of the competition finishing behind me -- 57 people).

My age group rank in 2011 was 21/22. (95%)
This year it was 23/28 (82%)

It probably seems silly to compare everything, but it is what I need to see.  It is no easy task for me to find the time to train and prepare.  Surely I could do more, but managing 5 kids, 7 sports teams, homework, 2 kids still at home all day, 3 in school, school musicals, playdates, activity days, coaching (3 teams), serving on the softball board, serving in church, all while my husband works long hours is no small task.  I am doing the best that I can to get back into shape so that someday I can be truly competitive.

My time this year improved 28%.  I am hoping next year for a 23% improvement -- getting me under the 1 hour 30 minute mark (if I meet my goals for each area I will be at 1 hour 26 minute and 10 seconds -- so I have a 3-4 minute margin).  I will have to work hard, but I think I can do it! That time would put me at about the 60% mark -- meaning 60 % of the competitors are still faster than me -- but that is a big improvement over 2012 where 87% of the competitors were faster than me.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

The Old Fashioned Ice Cream Town Social

This is one of my favorite New Canaan Events. Absolutely one of the best things to do in the town. The Historical Society opens all their grounds and museums. An old time band plays. The town serves homemade cakes and icecream. There are historical activities and classic cars.