Wednesday, September 30, 2015

you matter

Monday, September 28, 2015

I will trust

There has been a new song on Praise that I love called "First" by Lauren Daigle. When I searched for it (the truth is that I didn't know what the title was and couldn't tell that's what she was saying, so I googled the lyrics and found it!) I found many more songs of hers.  Currently, this is my newest favouritest song and on repeat.

Trust in you

Letting go of every single dream
I lay each one down at Your feet
Every moment of my wandering
Never changes what You see

I've tried to win this war I confess
My hands are weary, I need Your rest
Mighty Warrior, King of the fight
No matter what I face, You're by my side
When You don't move the mountains I'm needing you to move
When You don't part the waters I wish I could walk through
When You don't give the answers as I cry out to You
I will trust, I will trust, I will trust in You

Truth is, You know what tomorrow brings
There's not a day ahead You have not seen
So, in all things be my life and breath
I want what You want Lord and nothing less

You are my strength and comfort
You are my steady hand
You are my firm foundation, the rock on which I stand
Your ways are higher
Your plans are always good
There's not a place where I'll go You've not already stood

I will trust
I will trust
I will trust in You!

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Thankful Thursday

Welcome back to Thankful Thursday, a feature started by Louise at Talk Nerdy to Me, where we look back over our week and remember our blessings.  It is so good to see all that has happened, especially if you have had a particularly tough week. Being grateful is good for the soul. Here are just a few things that I am thankful for...

1. BTS

Yay! What's not to be thankful for?

I have a child in each of our school's campus' this year: preschool (Eden), elementary (Rhys gr 1, Bryn gr 4), middle (Kai gr 7) and high school (Abi gr 9)  It's so strange!

2. preschool

Yes, it's time!  My little spitfire is going to preschool! She is so ready!  

She was so excited and loves to go, and I am so happy for her! I sure hope these teachers are ready for her! (she wasn't too happy that I got to stay when we had preschool orientation, so now she asks every time I drop her off for class, "you're not staying, are you?" haha)

3. cross country

Bryn joined the cross country team at school. Now that he's in grade four, there are more clubs available for him to be in, so he's happy! I think this is great, the kid really does love to run and jump. 

We have some practices and meets already this month. I can't wait to see him out there running!

4. specialists

 From Kai and Abi's awesome pediatrician, to the many specialists we saw for Rhys, to even the paramedics, nurses and doctors during Abi's asthma attack, I am so grateful for the specialists who are knowledgeble and trained and who have helped us out.

5. fun hair

 The kids found some small temporary coloured hair gel and had fun playing around for school one day this week. I thought they all looked great!

 I am thankful for fun hair colour and styles and that they go to a school that doesn't mind them playing around some!

6. new friends

Kai made a friend already so early into the school year and got to hang out with him at his house. Not only am I proud of him for making new friends, but I am so pleased that it is a new boy to our school. I remember how incredibly hard it was for me to move across the country to BC when I was 10. I had a hard time making friends, and when I did make some they weren't nice to me in the end; I still carry a lot of hurt of those years. So I try to impress upon my children to do what they can to include the new kids. My kids have the advantage of being in this school since kindergarten so they know everyone, but these new ones don't have anywhere to start from. A welcoming smile is a good thing to see!

I am thankful for new friends, and I am thankful that my boy is the one who is including new classmates

7. safety and healing

This goes without saying but I am so incredibly thankful for Abi's health after another asthma attack sent her to the hospital via ambulance. I am thankful that she is healing, she is safe, and that she had so many people helping her.

8.  Meet the Teacher nights

This week, we got to go check out the teachers for the middle and the high school. (last week was the elementary but we weren't able to go. I find those teachers easier to connect with though, so I wasn't worried about missing out) I am excited about their school year! We really are so blessed to be able to go to our school!

9. Baby Cohen

I am so excited about this little guy!

 My newest nephew was born a week before his due date, but just at the perfect time as it happened on an evening (and was swift) when I was able to be a part of it!  I am so in love with him and his squishy cheeks, and so proud and happy for my favouritest sister and her man/my friend! 

10. Rainbows
My day was filled with a few ups and downs so when I saw this bit of rainbow falling out of the sky this evening, I was brought to tears and reminded of God's covenant with us.

  "You will be secure, because there is hope; you will look about you and take your rest in safety." Job 11:18

 I am so thankful that He let me see that tonight! What a beautiful reminder!

So that's my week in a nutshell. How about you? What are you thankful for? Please share your list in the comments (there's a little button at the top by the title!) I'd love to celebrate with you!

Sunday, September 20, 2015

our fears come true (asthma at school)

It happened again. I wasn't prepared for it and to say I panicked just a little bit would be an understatement.  But so understandable.

I was in my Bible Study group when I saw that I had missed a phone call from the Older's school and had a voice mail. I didn't know if I should check it (it seemed awfully rude to go on my phone when our Teaching Leader was talking; especially since this was my first meeting) or just hope that if it was important that they would contact my husband. As we were breaking to start something else, I see that there are some text messages from Kai but from Abi's phone.

Abi was being taken to the hospital by ambulance after suffering an asthma attack during PE.

My world stopped.

Memories of the day she almost died three years ago assault me and I can't breathe either.  Of course, as I'm trying to explain to my own Leader, I'm crying. So much for being strong in front of people you don't really know; people who don't know your story! I felt a bit silly. But mostly I felt so afraid.

I got a hold of my Hunny on the phone; he was on his way to the hospital, sounding totally calm. He said that he talked to the Paramedic and that Abi was doing okay and there was nothing to worry about. He said that I didn't have to come. Are you kidding me? I was definitely coming and I felt I had a lot to worry about!

Not that I didn't believe him either. I appreciated his calmness, and I don't think I truly thought it would be a repeat of what happened in our house three years ago-- I didn't think she'd pass out or that she was going to stop breathing; it sounded like things were under control. But I also couldn't calm my feeling of panic.

There was a verse that God had spoken to me earlier in the week and I tried to repeat it to myself on the drive to the hospital. "When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy." Psalm 94:19 

I didn't find that I received joy, but I did find strength and I did have focus. Instead of thinking of my fears and the 'what ifs' or the painful memories in the past, I chose to remind myself of the calm my husband had, and the knowledge that she was being taken care of, and that there were women praying over Abi (and myself) in my Bible study group.

When I arrived, I cried at the parking meter since I didn't have enough money in coins and my credit card was missing. (forcing people to pay for parking at a hospital is just a terrible idea!) I offered a scruffy looking older man my $5 bill if he just had $1.50 for me, and when he just gave me the money without wanting mine in exchange, I cried some more. *sigh* Oh, so it's going to be one of those days, is it? But despite all of my anxiety and embarrassing emotions, I was so relieved to see Abi looking some-what normal!

Other than the bright red cheeks, the fast breathing, and the face mask of oxygen, that is. But she looked calm, just tired. And I could handle that!

She said that she was in PE and their teacher is trying to teach them all to run a 5K by the time school is over. I thought that was a mighty big goal, an impressive one! The idea is that none of the kids are allowed to walk, but have to keep up a steady pace. However, just three minutes into the run and Abi's chest is starting to hurt and she's having a hard time breathing. She tried to push herself further since she had barely even begun, but she soon realized that it was getting worse, not better. Her breathing became panting, and when she asked to retreive her inhalers from her locker, the teacher suggested she take some friends along for support since she didn't look good. That quickly turned too as her panting, walking and attempts at talking made her weak and dizzy. (her friends were freaking out, she said!)

Unfortunately, her inhalers were empty and she forgot her refills at home. Thankfully, they were able to have Kai sent from his class to borrow his inhalers. But by that time, her attack had been going on for too long without any proper relieving medication, so his inhalers didn't help despite being the same dose as hers. That's around the same time another teacher (or more) got involved and looked over her (and that's when she could see the way he was looking at her eyes and studying her that she said to him, "I don't have a concussion, you can stop checking!"  It's the exam she sees her Daddy do on the kids whenever they get hurt! The teacher laughed, but kept caring for her. I think it's a good sign that she could make silly comments like that. So much like her Mom!) And that's around the time they called for an ambulance. Thankfully the hospital is just a few streets over from the school, so it wasn't a long wait. Soon enough, there were 8 or 9 paramedics in the school, getting info, checking over my girl!  She was well taken care of!

Her hospital stay actually was brief. Only a few hours. She moved from oxygen through a mask, to the nose prongs to room air within two hours. Then she was allowed to go home just after lunch! It was all rather surprising and we weren't too sure how comfortable we felt about that, but she really was doing better with her breathing. Her chest was sore, and she was very tired and weak and didn't have the strength to speak loudly, but that was okay. I expected that, but the idea of leaving the security of the hospital so soon after an attack that brought you there seemed scary!

The whole thing was so incredibly different than the severe attack that happened three years ago. Other than the obvious points where she didn't pass out and have blue lips and cheeks, or that it wasn't us who called for an ambulance. There was the fact that this time she didn't panic and hyperventilate (I panicked! But had I been there, I probably wouldn't have.) I am so happy to say (and sad) that experience is a teacher; she knew not to freak out, she knew to keep focused, she knew she had to push harder (especially since her own support group in the school were getting scared and she had to instruct them!) I was so proud of her. Not hyperventilating obviously helped!

Her recovery has been different too. The first time, she stayed at the hospital overnight. This time only three hours. The first time, she seemed to bounce back by day two. This year, it has taken four days. (she missed the rest of the week of school, since she was too weak to do much of anything. She has finally gained enough energy to make it out of the house for a bit.)  They had given her 15 units of ventolin instead of the usual 2, so she was so dizzy and shakey all the way until 8pm that night, 10 hours later! She's also had a headache all week and hearing sensitivity and some more asthma flare ups, which I don't recall three years ago. And this year there is no follow up. But apparently this recovery is all normal.

So what caused her attack? Her morning was just fine at home. No problems breathing, no wheezing, no cold or illnesses. So this really was out of the blue. However, there were a bunch of small things. First is that she forgot to take her allergy pill and she forgot to pack her new inhalers. Second is that there were a few factors in what could've triggered it: the grass that had been cut (she is allergic to grass; it makes her itchy and when it is mowed it can make breathing difficult), the air was chilly that morning (cold air is harder on asthmatics), and she was running. (PE was her first class that day.) Not having her own inhalers didn't help. Taking too long to get a rescue inhaler from her brother wasn't good either.

I'm not too sure what that means. I don't think she should avoid PE, as much as she would love to! (She does need physical activity and keeping active is good for the lungs. I know that the teacher is trying to get them up to a 5K runner, and that he wants them to not walk, but her father and I have told her that if she needs to walk, she does. And if the teacher gets upset with her, we will back her up! However, after this incident, I don't think he'll push her too much!) I guess we just make sure that she's got her inhalers with her and they are current and full and that she doesn't forget allergy pills in the morning. I'm not too sure about the chilly air....maybe wear a scarf? (haha)  We will adjust things as we go along.

I am just so thankful that she was about to be level headed (although she said that at the beginning of school, she had this 'weird' feeling, like a regretful feeling, but she didn't know why. Another funny thing is that a friend of mine said that when she dropped off her daughter to the school, she had a 'bad feeling' about PE too, but thought it was a worry for her girl's own asthma! Strange!)
I am also thankful that Kai was able to help her out. It may have been a bit too late for his inhalers, but I am grateful that he could offer them, especially since she has been the one to rescue him a few times last year! Hey, they may have actually helped give her more time before the ambulance arrived with sirens on!
I am thankful for the friends who stopped what they were doing right then and prayed for her (and our family) when they heard. God heard and He answers! She got the help she needed and in time, and I had found strength despite my fears.
I am thankful that the school acted swiftly in calling for outside help, and that they were able to contact my husband when I didn't respond to their calls (I was in a different room than my cell phone at that time)
I am thankful that she is healing. Even if it is a lot slower than we anticipated. She has been so weak and sore, and breathless, but she has not gotten worse, and we didn't need to have a prescription for meds at home and she didn't need to return to the ER.
It was a lot less dramatic this time and I am so thankful.

One of our biggest fears was that there would be another major asthma attack when Abi wasn't with us (and I know her fear was to have one at school) and it happened. And we survived. And we realized that things could be okay. Not having it happen again would be great though.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

He is so good

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Sweltzer Creek Campground

We were supposed to be camping this week, but had to cancel when important appointments came up. With all the rain and cool weather we've had, I guess it's okay. Would be nice to end summer with a bang though.  Instead, I'll tell you about our "camping" trip a few weeks ago.

It was local camping, and we actually didn't stay overnight. Just Bryn did, along with his aunt, grandma and cousin, but we did visit them for an evening and got to check out the place.  

My inlaws did a search online for local campgrounds and Sweltzer Creek Campground came up, and since it is just an hour away, tucked up by Cultus Lake, it was a perfect location.


The campground is surrounded by tons of trees, and has a fun playground at the top of a hill along with a huge playing field for games. It really is geared towards families there. Every evening, they had a night security guard come around and introduce himself, which I thought was neat. He kept any partiers ....and bears....out. I could appreciate their efforts to keep the campground safe and fun for all.

 What made it the most fun though was the creek. There were several campsites that were right up on the banks, which meant you could spend all day in it! And so that's what we did!

 We grabbed our air mattresses and boats and floated down the lazy creek.


 It was a lot of fun. And since the creek wasn't too deep (it came just below my knees in some areas) I wasn't too worried for the kids. I wonder how much deeper it would be if our summer weren't in a drought?

After our lazy swim, the kids played at the playground and climbed trees and made friends.

We even had a neighbour offer us their old propane firepit, since they replaced it with a newer and nicer one! That was pretty cool! With the fire ban on for the summer, camping isn't quite the same without roasted marshmallows! (wood fires are banned, but propane was okay)

We really enjoyed visiting family at their campsite! We don't go to campgrounds that are local.....or that have flushing toilets and pay showers; I like our rustic camping, but I also like the idea of having some comforts. So visiting and going back home to your own bed (and not having to pack up a tent trailer in the morning) was nice!

We'd go back to Sweltzer Creek Campground again. Maybe it is a perfect solution to wanting to camp but also not wanting to go far.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

hello September

I can't believe it's already September!  But I think I say that at every month change!

Actually, after our wet and windy weekend, it's feeling very Autumnal! And I love Fall, so I'm okay with that.

I'm sad that Summer feels officially over now, yet I am also so ready for the change. In less than a week, the kids head back to school, and really they've been ready to go back for a few weeks. Secretly. They won't admit it, but they're restless and starting to get bored and rely too much on the computer for entertainment.  I'm happy that with our rain, it's been dark and cloudy, making it not too hard to convince the kids to head to bed on a more proper time. (the Olders need more convincing though)

It'll be nice to start up a new schedule again, with regular things (like school and Bible study group) as well as new opportunities (like a chore schedule, and preschool and even new teachers) I always feels that Autumn holds more promise of New Beginnings than January 1st does. Then I feel Easter is your second chance to start anew, with thoughts on the reason behind the holiday, and with Spring approaching.

Yay for new seasons that give hope and fresh change!

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