Tuesday, April 22, 2014

April 22, 2014 - Monthly update

It has been busy.  It seems to always be busy.

After my brother's family visited and we all visited the Bahamas, (hard life I know) we had some friends come into town who we loved seeing.
And then another one of my brothers and his family came into town - they stayed for 5 days, and we loved playing with them.
While they were here, we traveled to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida to see the new LDS temple and go through the open house prior to it's dedication.
We also had a gorgeous beach day.  And got sunburned, and we really enjoyed So. Florida.
It has been really enjoyable to spend time with my siblings and their families these past months - and we are so glad we could see them.  I don't think they minded the gorgeous Florida weather too much either!

Our daughter had a birthday, Easter came and went. This year over spring break we worked on our traditional sugar eggs - cement hard eggs made from sugar that we decorate with royal icing (it too dries rock hard) for Easter.
Then...after years of thinking about it, we bought a ukranian egg decorating kit and we've had LOTS of fun decorating the eggs with wax, and then dying over the wax - creating layers and layers of intricate designs.  Unfortunately, mine always seemed to break just as I was finished and melting all of the wax back off again. Stink.  They are time intensive, and thus therapeutic and we've had lots of fun with them.

My husband has been back to work for 5 weeks now.  He is still shaking - violent shakes that come from no where - abrupt like a sneeze.  Sometimes they are accompanied by small shakes that don't stop.  He continues to see a naturopathic Dr. as well as a counselor who is doing EMDR therapy with him - as he tries to sort out childhood trauma.  It is difficult.  Difficult to see how very little things trigger him, and how they can affect him so profoundly.  Church and family are triggers. He has found that tapping has been helpful, and I've been concocting lots of different aromatherapy potions for him, which seem to help at times.  He doesn't sleep well - he usually wakes up around 3 am, and gets up and writes and writes and writes.  His insurance policy is that no one can read this handwriting.  Sometimes he comes back to bed for a while, sometimes he is up for the day.  He has been very busy at work, and has slogged through some things that have been difficult.  It is a blessing if he makes it through 8 hours of continuous sleep.  I'm especially grateful for nights when he doesn't wake up with panic attacks, grabbing me, or small or big shakes in the night.  Usually one of us ends up at some point out on the couch.  If it is a good night, undoubtedly, the cats will begin picking at the door to get out, or jumping on the door knob from outside as they try to open the door to come in.  I'm usually pretty tired, but we are managing...and learning to live with it.  He isn't driving long distances still. Sometimes he has to pull over on the side of the road and wait for shaking to subside before he can continue driving. He calls to let me know, and I know eventually he will make it home.  This Sunday was particularly bad, (all weekend) and a kind friend noticed how bad it was (I was in primary with the children) - he ended up driving my husband's car home for us.  My husband had to stay late, and a friend drove him home.  One the way, the friend's daughter saw him shaking, and said, "I don't like it when you do that.  Please don't do that any more".  My husband laughed and laughed when he told me about it.  Our friend was probably pretty mortified.  Oh, that it were so easy to turn off...

I've been doing a lot of reading and research - I've found so much truth in reading and studying Brene Brown's work.  We've listened to several of her CD's, her online presentations, as well as a few of her books.  I'm amazed - and as I speak with friends who are struggling in their lives, I see answers in Brene's work.  I think I should earn commission from her - at least a small marketing perk or something.  Really - it has been very impactful.  I've been working on some guideposts from Brene's books - to become more wholehearted.  As such, I've begun drawing - which I've never done before, but am really enjoying.

The kids are doing state testing right now, and our youngest is excited to be commencing pottery wheel classes.
 Last week the kids were off school for Good Friday - we picked up material, and over the weekend, we made some berets.  My friend (and daughter's friend's mom) began chemo treatments last week.  We made her some cute berets and are having a hats and scarves shower for her.  Our youngest made her a snuggie from fleece, and has been so gratified to see her using it.  SO - my sewing machine was still out.  My treat - that I hold like a carrot in front of me to clean my house is to have the time to sew.  I haven't sewn since we moved to Florida - almost 3 years ago.  Since my machine was out, this morning, after replacing the zipper in some jeans, I pulled out an old project.  A baby blanket, that I began in Colorado for my nephew.  He is at least in kindergarten.  I was playing around with machine quilting.  It didn't look very good, so it got buried in an unfinished projects box.  This morning, I thoroughly enjoyed finishing it.  I just need to bind it now.  Kind of exciting to almost be able to check it off of my list.  And while it took some creative repairs (it was cannibalized by children in a couple of spots for whatever sewing project they had and snipped off a piece here or there), it is actually kind of cute - if you don't look too closely.  What 5 year old doesn't want a baby blanket??!!  Anywho... I'm not putting away my sewing machine for a while.  Both of my kids, and a friend made berets, and my girls are loathe to gift them.  They love them, and have begged to make more for themselves, and I've got a spring quilt top that I pieced years ago that just needs batting and backing and binding.  I'm going to finish it and put it out for my spring throw.  

Our house has been full of music as our oldest daughter got a keyboard/midi system for her birthday, and she's been composing music like a fiend.  I find myself here, humming one of her compositions.  So fun.

We are gearing up for birthday season, and looking at a very very busy summer with a flute camp, and two required marching band camps, along with girls camp, possibly EFY, and some traveling with my husband (since I'm the long trip chauffer).