Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Year 9

Arriving at the all day inservice to start my 9th year of teacher Grade 1:

This was the first time since this happened that I have not been there for the morning rounds. My Aunt said she would go and then update Conrad to update me. During the meeting, I stepped out to read this message:

It was too much. Even though it was exactly what we expected. It was hard to hear. No one really wants to hear that the doctor would be willing to meet. My principal told me to leave, gave permission for my friend Janice to drive me, and told me to go.... and I did. 

We did have our meeting when my sister arrived later in the day. It was a hard update to send to the family and friends:

We have had our meeting with the doctor and confirmed that this is not the life she would want. They will remove her breathing tube tomorrow and they will keep her comfortable until she passes.

When I updated my principal, he said a contingency plan had already been made and that I would not have to worry about school this week. I am blessed by my workplace and my supportive coworkers. This week is going to be a long one....

Monday, September 4, 2017


Today's morning rounds update: The MRI showed that the cortex of the brain has experienced significant trauma. They are removing sedation to wake her up. It's impossible to predict the outcome of this step. However after this many days it is a crossroad and they need to make an accurate neuro assessment to determine whether she will be able to wake up or not.

They began the waking process at 10:15 in the morning. Although the nurses continued to assess her reflexes and her response to stimulus in her pupils there was little change all day. We told and brought in my Dad because it was becoming clear that this might not end as well as we had hoped.

Reflexes are inconsistent and not initiated. They had to bring in a warmer as she was not able to regulate body temperature. She is on a ventilator and is not always initiating breaths. The doctor indicated that he would expect to see more initiated responses not just spontaneous. He did not sound hopeful.

Assured that no significant changes were expected overnight, we left for the evening and met Conrad's parents (Conrad's Dad had just checked out of the hospital emergency after receiving antibiotics for his foot infection) for supper while Kiandra was working.

All the time at the hospital over the last few days has meant eating out and so this was burger number 3 for me from Le Burger week:

Tomorrow the plan is for me to go to the school start up inservice. I have a student teacher and a busy week ahead. 

Sunday, September 3, 2017

The View From Here

Today's morning rounds update:

Her feeding tube has been suspended to prepare for an MRI today at 1:15. Her seizure medication has been upped to 2.0. (It was at .5 to start yesterday and it was 1.5 yesterday evening). 

The attending doctor cautioned us that he he didn't expect the results to be promising given the results of the 2 EEGs. He will know more after the MRI and update us with new information at that time.

The plan is that they will begin to try and wake her up after the MRI. They expect the MRI process to be a few hours because of all the work to transport all the machines and wires to the MRI clinic. It could be later this afternoon before we know anything.

and as we are learning everything takes more time than expected. We returned home late in the evening with plans to return in the morning hopeful for an update. 

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Girls Night Out

I spent the morning at the hospital with my mom. Since the consensus was that today would be very much like yesterday and they didn't expect any significant changes I decided to do some errands (like much needed grocery shopping!) and then take Kiandra out for her birthday present: Phantom of the Opera!

First we went for dinner:
Roll Kuchen Burger for Le Burger Week:

and then off to the show:

It was an awesome show--the sets, the talent, everything-- and we really enjoyed it!

Friday, September 1, 2017

A different kind of date night

It was a long day at the hospital with my Mom. I arrived by 8:30 and left around 5:30. There's been no change for her and so we just wait. I had originally intended to be at school for some time during the day because I wasn't quite ready with everything I had planned AND I found out I'm getting two new students so I needed to add a few more name tags and supplies.

Le Burger week started today so we grabbed a veggie burger to go for me: (Conrad got Wendy's ;)

and Conrad lovingly helped me get my class ready for the year: 

A few hours later and I felt really good about the start of the year and we left the school. I'm thankful for my school, my job, my awesome husband. and that even in uncertain times I am surrounded with good things. 

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Unexpected ending to the day

The day started with errands with the girls:

A visit to the bank, returning the stuff Kezia no longer needs:

travel insurance:

Ikea stop:

We dropped off the girls (who had afternoon plans), picked up the boy, stopped for slurpees:

Stopped at the mall, met up with Kezia and her friend, and then came home to enjoy supper together. It was a busy kind of ordinary day...

...until we got the phone call. It was the hospital. My mom was there. Please come. 

The day that started off so ordinary all of sudden became not. 

My mom had fallen in her apartment elevator. An ambulance had brought her in. She was unresponsive for 20 minutes. She had no pulse. She was not breathing. They didn't know why. My mom was hooked up to so many wires and machines. This was not expected. By the time we left late in the evening we knew not much more than when we came. She was stable. She was sedated and we would wait and see....

From ordinary to not so ordinary...

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

On a mission

Attempting to finish my classroom set up today...

...but not quite done.  I have plans to finish on Friday. 

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Proverbs 16:9

One of my favourite verses is Proverbs 16:9 and this afternoon Kezia posted this status as she spent the entire afternoon on the phone, on the computer, and looking at emails about plans for Fall:

Ever since she found out about her program being cancelled, she has been wondering what God has planned for her for the Fall. She found doors that were closed (the YWAM program that she experienced a God-nudge for) and doors that were open (At least 3 programs had space available and no visa needed at such a last minute) but nothing seemed like it was a solid direction. Kezia prayed for specific direction for what she should do and this is what happened after that....

Kezia has been wanting to get layers in her hair but wanted to go to a 'real' place and not a school-where she got her big chop done. I've listened to my local radio station and the salon next door advertised that they specialize in curly hair.  I suggested that place to Kezia.  Kezia decided to try and make an appointment for today if there would be a spot open-- preferably after Kiandra started work so they could spend the day together. Kiandra started at 5:00 - The Salon said they have an appointment available but not until 5:15😎 perfect. I decided to drive Kez to the appointment and do some grocery shopping while she got her hair cut. I dropped her off and I came back 90 minutes later just in time as her stylist is finishing up. Kezia (in her new bouncy wispy short hair) is beaming. She excitedly tells me that she knows what she is doing this Fall. She proceeds to tell me all about her experience with the hair appointment....Her stylist goes to church is getting married in October. The stylist has been on 6 missions trips and she attended the same school that hosted the program Kezia had planned to attend before it was cancelled. She has friends who went on that program. She has a bridesmaid that raved about a Capernwray school in Austria and the stylist wrote down the name so Kezia could check it out. Kezia asked for a clear direction...this is pretty clear:

By the time we got home, the stylist had found Kezia on Instagram and private messaged her the friend's contact so Kezia could ask her any questions. Oddly enough, this exact Capernwray was mentioned in a Facebook status I had posted to ask for suggestions for Kezia. Unfortunately, I had already looked it up and saw it was full for the fall term and I told Kezia this. She was undeterred and felt certain that there would be a place for her. Kezia searched it up when we got home and said 'waiting list' does not mean full. 😏 So she emailed them to ask if they expected any spots to open the Fall term. It was 2:00am their time and so she would have to wait until their office opened to find out any answers. Conrad, Kezia, and I went for a bike ride in the evening and she was absolutely confident that God had lined everything up--the fact that I heard about salon on the radio and told Kezia about it, the hair appointment available at the last minute, the stylist she got, the direction of their conversation, the Capernwray suggestion, the chance to speak with someone who had actually been there--Kezia stated she KNEW that there would be a spot for her. 

Since I am back dating this post, I can add that the next morning, Kezia marched out of her bedroom triumphantly and read us the email she had received back from the school....a spot had just opened up that day! 

Within minutes Kezia was applying:

and the next day she was accepted:

We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps. Kezia is so excited to see where God is leading her. 

Monday, August 28, 2017

Fortunately, Unfortunately

Fortunately, I was able to get Kaden up early enough to make a few stops before his appointment
Unfortunately, we weren't able to get everything done.

Fortunately, I did find 1 cd player that works with headphones at the thrift store
Unfortunately, I would like at least 2 more-and school starts next week

Fortunately, we arrived ahead of schedule for Kaden's appointment
Unfortunately, I spent the whole time worrying

Fortunately, I knew he was ready and having another driver would be a good thing
Unfortunately, he didn't pass :(

Fortunately, he wasn't too disappointed
Unfortunately, the things that prevented him from passing were things he totally rocks at

Fortunately, we were able to get another appointment for September
Unfortunately, it is a bit more inconvenient because it is during school

Fortunately, now we had time for a hair cut
Unfortunately, while I sat there I got more bummed about Kaden not passing because he totally should have

Fortunately, Kezia heard back from the program that she asked about
Unfortunately, visa issues will prevent her participation for this Fall

Fortunately, she has lots of options-including staying home ;)
Unfortunately, she is not sure what she should do and September is around the corner

Fortunately, some programs still have spots
Unfortunately, she does not feel clear direction 

Fortunately, Kiandra worked in the day and she could be home for supper
Unfortunately, she and Kezia went shopping and were not home by the time Conrad would have been

Fortunately, Conrad had an errand after work and so he was late too
Unfortunately, errands after work mean arriving home for supper at 8:00.

Fortunately, the girls and Conrad arrived home at almost the same time
Unfortunately, supper was starting to get cold

Fortunately, it was breakfast for supper and waffles taste good cold too 
Unfortunately, we ran out of whip cream

Fortunately, after supper we could watch Amazing Race as a family
Unfortunately, we only made it through 2 episodes (we watched 2&3 today)

Fortunately, we have a few weeks to get through more before Kiandra leaves
Unfortunately, with the busy schedules it might not be possible to get them all finished

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Great is Thy Faithfulness

Today was the last day for our church's children's pastor. He and his family are following God's leading to serve in Australia. It was not something they were seeking out, but an opportunity came to them and they were willing to go. As a farewell song, he chose to sing "Great is They Faithfulness" as a reminder that wherever God leads, whatever He has planned, and whenever He calls that He will be faithful.

What a powerful reminder in the midst of uncertainty:

“Great is Thy faithfulness!” “Great is Thy faithfulness!”
  Morning by morning new mercies I see;
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided—
    “Great is Thy faithfulness,” Lord, unto me!

Such a timely reminder as Kezia has to make some decisions about her plans for this fall. Due to the recent events in Burkina Faso, her program has been suspended for this year. This handbook is now obsolete:

Interesting to note that Kezia was doing some online research this morning before church and one program had caught her attention. She was planning to email for more information but knew the office would be closed on the weekends. During our goodbyes with the children's pastor, he brought up the exact same program. Was it fluke or a God-nudge towards something new??

Wherever Kezia ends up this fall, I know God will be faithful and that He already knows His plans for her. Great is His faithfulness. 

Saturday, August 26, 2017


I have not spent nearly as much time at school as in previous years. I've only spent about 4 hours so far but things keep getting in the way: lunch dates, volunteering, hanging with the boy, appointments and spa dates, and realizing that time with my kids at home trumps school prep. Today, I had no excuses: the weather was terrible (cold *11 degrees* and rainy), Kaden was at a friends cabin, Kiandra was at work, and Kezia had day camp cleanup for the morning followed by a late staff lunch. So, I drove Conrad to work and then headed to school.

new labels for coat hooks, made and printed
new labels for book boxes, made and printed
(while I was at it) new labels for some other supplies, made and printed
name tags and labels laminated
name tags and labels cut out
6 drawers cleaned out, relabeled, and organized
outside of classroom bulletin board up:

school supplies brought in and put away
name tags set in place
pencils sharpened
pencils tagged-ready for names
erasers opened
new classroom names added to artsonia.com

and I left my classroom looking like this:

Still to do:

buy: packing tape
card stock
8 mini hooks
a crate
at least 2 cd players that can work with headphones (my last 4 trips to a thrift store were unsuccessful and new ones don't work with headphones!!)

velcro names to tables
label book boxes, Poem of the Week book, agenda, read to self boxes
Photocopy first poem of the week
add names to pencil flags
make popsicle stick names (for random selecting)
parent letters for instagram, artsonia, and home reading
update SmartBoard calendar
update "make the teacher disappear" game for SmartBoard
video me mailing letters to post on new classroom instagram account
update Power Word rings and make at least 3 more sets
photocopy Power Word lists for "I can read" book
photo copy first day of school page for portfolio
cut tissue paper (or find the precut one at dollarama like last year!)
photocopy Camps with Meaning song lyrics for "I can read" book
add birthdays to birthday chart
make a tiny class list for the back of my teacher name tag

if ambitious: change borders on front bulletin boards

and then I am ready for the first week of school!

Friday, August 25, 2017

A new place with an "old" friend

Don't you just love those friendships that can pick up right where you left off the last time you got together...

Today I had a lunch date with my friend Tammi at a new-to-us place recommended by Kezia. It was delicious! We ate our yummy food, drank the most scrumptious grapefruitade, and caught up on each other's lives.

Although we don't get to see each other often (she lives out of town) it is so nice to get together when we can. Thanks Tammi! I enjoyed our lunch together!

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Thursday Lunch

It's the last week of day camp (Junior High Week) and they were short on volunteers to cook lunch. Kiandra offered to come and since I was debating going to the school when she asked if I wanted to come with her, I decided school could wait and so I joined her. I am thankful that I did because instead of the usual 4-5 volunteers to cook and serve it was just 3 of us.

Here's a glance at just some of the food we had to make for those hungry teens!

The chicken fingers were served in wraps (tortillas, lettuce, cheese, and ranch dressing) with fries and veggies (carrots and snap peas) on the side. 

Thankfully we were able to serve lunch about an hour later than expected and no one even minded. Clean up took a bit longer as we couldn't clean up as we went because all three of us had to serve the whole time as the kids ate. 

It's hard to believe it is the last week of camp!

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Transformation Tuesday

From my followup MRI in the morning:

To a relaxing day at the spa with my Sister-in-law--courtesy of my generous Grade 1 friends:

(I was there from 10:45am-9:40pm) :)
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