Thursday, November 22, 2012

They Look Good Together

Every once in a while, I'll walk into the room and I'll see Kyson and Kodi curled up on the couch together.  Rarely do I grab the camera and savor the moment, but this time I did.  I didn't get any candid shots, but when they saw me with the camera the started posing.  I got a mini photo shoot out of them.  They really like each other.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Road Trip

All summer we talked about trying to get down to Vernal to see Kris's grandma.  Then we talked about trying to go in October over UEA, but things get so busy so fast, and then next thing you know, you can't make it.  I had a day off and we thought it would be a good day to break in the new car and see how it did on a long trip.  Besides, if we didn't get out there now, we wouldn't make it before the winter hit.

We didn't stay long.  We drove there, stayed about 4 hours, and then drove home.  It's a lot easier than trying to spend the night.  The kids seemed to enjoy their DVD players and they could each watch their own show.  Because they have wireless headphones, Kris and I were able to listen to what we wanted as well.

Grandma Zufelt made some wonderful food and we got to share the company of Grandma, Sharon, and Perry.  The kids had their moments of difficulty, but overall I think they did a pretty good job.  It's always nice to see them, and when we live only a few hours away, it's important for us to take advantage of the opportunity when we have one.  My grandma is across the country and we don't have that luxury.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Can I Get an Answer, Please?

A few days after the car accident, I noticed something strange on Kodi.  Near her collarbone, I noticed a protruding bump.  I couldn't tell what it was so I asked her to come to me so I could look at it.  It was sharp to the touch and the best way to describe it was like a large BB stuck under her skin.  I had the chiropractor look at it when I went for myself and he said that the clavicle had been popped out from the accident.  I called my sister and she recommended I see a pediatric orthopedic.  I called, but they wouldn't see me without a referral and told me I needed to go to the Instacare or her primary doctor.  Because I couldn't get into her pediatrician for a week, I decided to go to Instacare.

That evening I went to the Instacare, but they said they can't third party bill for accidents.  So, unless I wanted to pay for this myself, I would have to go to the emergency room.  I didn't want to do that, but didn't know what else I could do, so off I went.  I was waiting in the waiting room for over two hours before they called me back, and the doctor looked at her and said, "This was here before, and you're just noticing it now because you were in a car accident."  This angered me, so they did x-rays.  I didn't need an x-ray to tell my her collarbone wasn't broken - she would have been in a lot of pain if it was broken.  Basically, I sat there until 1 am to be told I'm "looking for things."  I was pretty mad.

I kept the appointment with her pediatrician, but he said that he didn't know what to do with it.  he recommended either a chiropractor or physical therapist.  There was a physical therapist's office just across the waiting room, so before I left the building I spoke with them.  They were about to close and the director was there, but he took a few minutes to talk to me, and I'm grateful.  Just looking at her, he could tell that the bone protruding from her neck was from the accident.  It was from her car seat as I suspected.  He said that the ligament holding the bone in place was either torn or stretched which is causing her clavicle to stick out.  Because she was so young and her bones are still flexible, that is what saved her from breaking her clavicle.  He said that he didn't know if anything could be done and suggested I meet with the orthopedic to see what options there are, and if anything were to happen later, at least it's been recorded.  So I set up an appointment with the orthopedic.

I met with a highly recommended orthopedic surgeon, who was very nice.  Apparently, the physical therapist was the closest of everyone that I spoke to.  Not only was the ligament damaged, but the bone separated from her growth plate.  The bad news is, there is nothing that can be done.  If they put in a screw to hold the bone down, it will leave a scar, and then we're stuck with the same problem she has now - cosmetic.  He said that it might go back with time.  That is my hope at this point.  It's not terrible, but in certain lights, it's pretty apparent.

Fortunately, it's not very easy to notice in pictures, but you can see the dark spot on the left side of her throat.

Monday, November 5, 2012

A New Car

Well, after having a  rental for a week, and waiting on news from my car, I got word that my car has been totalled.  I found out on a Friday, and was given until Tuesday to buy a new one before I have to return the rental.  I was really stressed out with this news.  I'll admit, I anticipated the car being totalled, but I didn't think that I'd only have 4 days to buy a new car - that's a large purchase to do so quickly.  It was happening the same weekend that it was the end of the quarter at both of my schools, and I had to teach a lesson a church.  It was a little too much for me and I finally cracked - I had a long cry and felt sorry for myself.  After that, I was ready to jump back in the game.

I teach a finance class at my school, Youth Village Academy, and decided to give them a real-life situation.  I gave them the assignment to find me a car.  I wrote on the board what I was looking for and told them to add the tax at 7.5%, the interest at 2.9%, the license and registration fees that I estimated to be $400, and told them to calculate my monthly payment with a 5 year loan.  I'll admit that they found some decent cars, but one student found the car that would lead me to the lot.  I liked what he'd found so much that I visited their websites and found other cars like it and called them.

Later that day, my husband and I went to the lot and test drove cars, choosing one that evening.  The next day, we took care of the paperwork and went to pick up the car.  We bought a 2012 Ford Escape Limited with 16,000 miles.  While this is the nicest vehicle we've ever owned, we decided to buy something that would last for a long time.  We drive our vehicles until they die, and I hope this will be in the family for at least 10 years.  Then maybe we can give it to Kyson when he starts driving.  I looked it up online with the extras that it has, and we were able to get a better deal than I thought.  All I can say is, we got a great deal on this car.  I'm not excited about having a new payment, but it will hopefully be a great investment for the family.

Later that day, my husband and I went to the lot and test drove cars, choosing one that evening.  The next day, we took care of the paperwork and went to pick up the car.  We bought a 2012 Ford Escape Limited with 16,000 miles.  While this is the nicest vehicle we've ever owned, we decided to buy something that would last for a long time.  We drive our vehicles until they die, and I hope this will be in the family for at least 10 years.  Then maybe we can give it to Kyson when he starts driving.  I looked it up online with the extras that it has, and we were able to get a better deal than I thought.  All I can say is, we got a great deal on this car.  I'm not excited about having a new payment, but it will hopefully be a great investment for the family.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012


Kyson has been talking about Halloween for about 2 months now, and the day finally came.  When we looked for costumes, it was easy for Kodi.  We knew any princess would work, but Aurora is her favorite right now.  When they had an Aurora costume, it was that easy.  Kyson, on the other hand, wanted to be Pablo from Backyardigans.  He's a little penguin and I knew the costume would be impossible.  After screaming, wailing, and gnashing of teeth, he decided he wanted to be Optimus.  I told him that was fine, but he was Optimus last year and he'd need to use that costume.  He didn't like that either.  Finally, I took him to the store and showed him Batman, Darth Vader, and Spiderman in hopes that one of those costumes would suffice.  He chose Spiderman and was happy with his decision ever since.

On Halloween night, normally we go to my sister's for chili before we start the evening festivities.  Because Bill is working in Idaho, she went to him this year.  There is no need for her to stick around when her kids don't trick-or-treat anymore.  I decided to invite my parents over for taco soup, and that way we wouldn't need to take an extra trip to my parents' house.

When I got home from work, I hurried and made the soup, then we got ready to go to Carol and Errol's.  Unfortunately, Kodi had already ripped her costume in two places - Emergency Wardrobe Malfunction!!!  I about freaked out, knowing that we had limited time.  So, we went to Carol and Errol's as planned, and I took Kodi's costume as soon as we arrived.  She got to mingle with the grandparents in a pull-up, and she wasn't happy about it.  I raced over to my parents where my mom performed an emergency fix and we were back in business.  We had a little more time with the Bodily's before we had to race home to eat.  Carol and Errol gave Kodi a bunch of Barbie Disney princesses and she was in 7th heaven.  Errol was a great sport and put on a coat and hat, and made mustaches with combs.  Kyson thought it was great.  I hated to cut the trip short, but we had more to do.

My parents came for soup, we talked for a short time, and then the Holts were ready for trick-or-treating.  This year, I went with the kids and Kris stayed and handed out candy.  I really enjoyed taking them around.  I got to see so many people in the neighborhood and figure out where people lived.  I had to run home twice though.  The first was to get jackets when it started getting chili, and the second was to get some better shoes and tights for Kodi.  Normally, running isn't a big deal, but since my accident, I haven't been able to do much and the little running that I did was not a good idea.  I was feeling its effects pretty badly.  Both Kyson and Kodi were ready to go home a lot sooner than I was, but I didn't fight them about it - it's their loss.

We went back to the house and relaxed a little as the crowds started to dwindle.  After we turned off our porch light, we did the math.  We had about 300 trick-or-treaters this year.  A little higher than average, but we live in a neighborhood of kids - you plan for it.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Car Accident

Every morning I wake the kids early, get them ready, and bring them to work with me until Kris gets off work.  We've had this routine since they were born and never had any problems, until this morning.  While driving to work on October 24, I was rear-ended at a stoplight.  This accident scared me a little.

I was in my compact car with my children in the back, and I was hit from behind in the lane closest to the left-hand turn lane.  The girl that hit me was in a Ford Explorer, which is a much bigger vehicle than mine and I couldn't see around her to pull over to the side of the road - we did have to cross three lanes of traffic to do it.  She pulled ahead of me and I followed her.  When we both stopped, I turned off my lights and started looking for my glasses that had been knocked off and I couldn't find them anywhere.  Suddenly, the girl takes off and turns right when the light turned green.  I didn't know what she was doing and I frantically tried to follow her, but couldn't see anything.  It was dark, and I didn't have my glasses.  I nearly hit a sign trying to follow her, and then something even worse caught my attention as I was turning - there was a pedestrian on the crosswalk.  I didn't see them until I was next to them.  I'm so grateful I didn't hit either of those, especially the pedestrian.  We stopped again at the next light, but when it turned green she kept going.  At this point, I had just found my glasses and I was frantically trying to memorize her license plate number, for fear that she was trying to do a hit and run.  I flashed my lights at her and honked my horn, and eventually she pulled into a parking lot.

When we get out of the car, both kids were crying and my neck already started hurting.  The girl that got out of the car looked incredibly young, and I discovered she was only 18 when I got her information.  I strongly believe she was texting.  She couldn't have hit me as hard as she did if she was paying attention.

I went to work, but was hurting pretty badly, and had to go home by the time my second job came around.  I was in pain and couldn't move.  Kodi was acting extremely tired, she kept complaining that she was cold, she wouldn't eat, and she was extremely whiny.  When I looked up the symptoms, she seemed to be exhibiting the symptoms of a minor concussion, but because she had slept most of the day, which was unusual, I didn't bother taking her tot he doctor.  There is nothing they could do for her anyway.

The next morning, Kodi was still whiny, and Kyson was complaining that his legs hurt and his body hurt.  I took both kids with me to the chiropractor to get looked at.  Kodi wouldn't cooperate, Kyson had some minor whiplash, and I had moderate to severe whiplash.  They estimate it should take 3-6 months before I feel like I did before the accident.

I knew my body would heal, but I was extremely concerned about my car.  The bumper was in two pieces, my trunk wouldn't shut, and the frame was bent.  I took it for an estimate, but have to wait to hear back from the insurance company about what they think.  This has been an exhausting event for me.  I've spent every spare moment the last few days either on the phone or with the doctor.  I don't feel well, but I have to get my work done.  I'm afraid in for a long haul of crap.  I hope something good comes out of this.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Pumpkin Carving

After visiting the pumpkin patch, we decided to carve the pumpkins on a weekend.  Because weekdays are so busy, a weekend was really our only option and the weekends were running out quickly before Halloween.  The little time caused us to choose a time that was probably not the most convenient - we did it before church on a Sunday.  Now normally, that wouldn't be a big deal, but you never know how long it will take to carve pumpkins, and the kids wanted to use paint instead of carve theirs.  That was a one-time thing.  I will never do that again.

I tried to take pictures, but I was so consumed with trying to keep the paint off their clothes and off the carpet that I couldn't focus.  Both of the kids got paint on their clothes that will not come off.  It makes me sad because Kodi was wearing her princess pajamas she got for her birthday and now they have permanent blue paint on them.

Kris and I carved our pumpkins and even after those were done, I didn't remember to take pictures of the final products.  I was so rushed to clean everything up and get ready for church that it slipped my mind.  I remembered while we were at church, but forgot by the time we got back.  So basically, we carved some pumpkins, painted some pumpkins and I have nothing to show you what they all looked like.  I'll try harder next time.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

The Pumpkin Patch

Last year was the first time we went to a pumpkin patch to pick out pumpkins.  It was such a great experience for us that we decided this will become a yearly family tradition.  The Patch we go to is off 11800 South and is a farmer's property that he lets everyone come on.  This year we were able to go on a hay ride and the ride takes you through their land and around the house.  Someone on the ride said that this whole pumpkin patch thing started years ago when they were trying to save money to pay for a mission for their kids.  It has now become a huge thing and people continue to come.  It feels good helping out the local farmers with their finances, especially when they do some much to entertain the kids.

Kyson loved the corn maze this year.  There was one point where the kids ran off and were in the maze by themselves.  Kris hid and scared them and the screams were great.  They were fun screams and not "I'm so scared, I'm going to kill you" screams.  The farmers bring out old tractors and allow customers to take pictures with them, and they set up other places for pictures.  It's a photographers dream.

I'm so grateful for the opportunities around us to have memorable experiences as a family.

Friday, October 19, 2012

The Pool

Even though we have a membership to the Rec Center, we don't get to the pool as often as I'd like.  I was able to take the kids the other day though when I had a few days off for UEA.  This is the first time I've had UEA off, because I work at a private school.  I loved having the extra time to play with the kids, go to Kyson's football clinic for the first time, and just not be so stressed all the time with work.  I truly look forward to the day when I'll be able to work one job and have more time with the family.

At the pool, Kyson is really improving with his comfort level in the water.  He'll go into deeper water and can bob himself where he needs to go.  He can't swim still, but he does a great job of moving around in water safely.  Kodi is getting more and more comfortable with the water as well.  Sometimes she's a little too comfortable and will jump in the water even when I'm not standing there ready to catch her.  She's done it so much with me that she doesn't understand why it would be any different without me.  I won't let her get more than arms distance away from me. The kids truly love going swimming.  I wish I could take them more often.