Monday, December 3, 2012


Last year I lost two of my grandparent which proved to be a trying experience for me.  I had never dealt with the loss of a close family member before.  I have always been close with my grandparents, since I was 5 and lived in Laramie my family and I have always traveled to Idaho at least a few time a year and spent time at my grandparents house sometimes for weeks on end.  I loved visiting them and was the highlight of my years while growing up.  I always had and still do feel endless love and support from my grandparents.
Grandpa Hurst
My Grandpa Hurst died from a 16 year battle of cancer in summer of 2011.  I will always remember my grandfathers contagious smile and laugh.  He was always interested in others especially family and rarely talked about himself.  He loved his family and always wanted the "party" to be around him.  I remember he would always find someone to talk to even if he didn't know them.  He was truly an example to me and hope I will always show love in such a fun loving way.

Monday, October 8, 2012


We all love BMX Racing!
Last year our good friend introduced Mason and us to BMX Racing and we all loved it.  We bought Mason a racing bike, full faced helment, and bmxing gloves.  He doesn't always finish first but it is a fun activity for the whole family Friday nights.  Maddy even gets into racing by participating in the the tot race and the end of the night where every racer gets a medal.  Sometimes I feel like we are the loudest cheering section there but it is so exciting to watch your child preform
Mason racing so fast the picture is blurry!
Mason at the starting gate.
Maddy racing on a scoot.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Spring Break 2012

For Spring Break this year we went to Sedona AZ with a big group of our friends the Quarnbergs, Stegelmieres, Dares, and the Martins.
We Followed the Quarnbergs and stopped on the reservation at a road side stand that claimed to have petrified dinosaur tracks.  We stopped and low and behold they looked pretty really.  I was a fun break on our 9 hour drive down to Sedona.

Madelyn ready for the hike to see the Tracks!

Mason and his friend Bradin sizing up the dino track.

While in AZ we of course did some Mountain Biking, well not just some but a lot.  Most of our friend trips revolve around biking which is a great thing.  While on our bike rides we would see people on the side of the trail doing yoga.  We thought we would try it out for ourselves.

Towards the end of our camping trip we decided that we were sick of each others smell so we drove to Cottonwood and bathed in their city pool.  It was a fun way to relax and have fun with the kid who were mostly stuck at camp while their parents went on bike rides.

Me and the girls enjoying some time together at camp.

While the girls were on a ride the dad took the kids on a hike not to far from our camp, it had Indian art and dwellings.

The kids spent most of the time play at camp together,  they had a great time.

The couple huddled up by the fire!

On our first ride we finished the trail and asked a lady to take our picture and she was quite the professional.

Go Girls!!!!!

some the the causalities on the trail.

On our way home we drove to The Grand Canyon because, Monroe or the kids had never seen it.  I have told Monroe since we have been married that The Grand Canyon is an experience to behold and that word or picture don't do it justice.  So us the Stegelmiers, and the Dares drove a couple hours out of the way to Williams AZ where we stayed the night so we could wake up in the morning, drive the 30 miles to see The Grand Canyon, and be on our way home.  We woke up the next morning to 4 feet of snow!!!
With every road out of Williams Closed we anticipated staying another night, luckily the roads cleared and we went our way up to The Grand Canyon.  When we got there it was a blizzard and and view into the canyon was 0.  But at least we got to have our picture taken at the Grand Canyon!
What a interesting and fun adventure to say the least.

It was a really fun trip with good friend and beautiful scenery.  I would do it again in a heartbeat!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

My Best Friend!

Yesterday I picked up Ruger's ashes.  And now that I have picked them up I can't seem to think about burying them.  Having them makes me feel like he is close to me, I know that sounds really weird but it is how I feel.  Our house has seemed empty since we lost him and I miss him so much.  It is amazing how the void of one spirit can really affect the feel of a home.
Per my previous post Ruger was diagnosed with Lymphoma but we had hope that we could have him longer with the use of steroids.  We were lucky to have him for a couple more months before the cancer had taken his whole body.  He started not eating well again and he stopped sleeping in our room where he always had slept, and when he would sleep he would breath really face and shallow.  He also stated to have more pain even though he would hid it well, (my Buger-Man always smiled). The day before we put him down I discovered some sores on his back where the hair and skin just started to sluffed off exposing these horrible sores and I came to the realization that it was time and no matter how hard it would be for me to not have him that it wasn't fair to let him suffer and waste away.
I really felt it important that I wanted to be there with him so the last thing that he remembered was me and not a stranger and upon arriving at the vet, Dr Bingham took one look and Ruger and said that the sores were from the Lymphoma and that his liver was enlarged and said if we took a X-Ray of his chest it probably would be covered with cancer.  It was time!  The process was very quick and painless for Ruger, however not for me and Monroe.  We where blubbering babies, he and Mesa were our first kids.
Mesa has done better than I thought she would she has connected more to me and the kids, which I am so relieved.  Another dog is in our future but not for a while, I don't want to get a puppy this summer with us leaving for vacations.  And I think that we are still morning our Buger-Man.

(?-JUNE 11, 2012)

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Chicks, Chicks, and more Chicks!

We decided that it would be a fun and educational experience for our family if we added chickens to our pet list.  We have friends that have had chickens for at least a year and they have enjoyed the egg that the get from the chickens.  As many of you know that I love animals and always enjoy an opportunity to welcome more into our home.  We got 7 chicks, they are so cute, fun, and the  kids and even my dogs are constantly checking on them.  For now they are in the garage but I know that they are going to grow fast and will move to a dog kennel outside that we already have set up for them.

The kids have named them Cupcake, Dora (obviously Madelyn's chicken), Spike, Cheetah (obviously Mason's chickens), and KFC (obviously Monroe's Chicken.  Other than than the other 3 remain nameless, I am sure more names will surface as time goes on and we learn more about our chickens.  For now they are lost of fun and are eating lots and lots of feed.  Maybe they will lay eggs faster!

Buger-Man (AKA Ruger)

About three weeks ago our dog Ruger started to go down hill, he stopped eating and started swelling up in his neck area so I took him into the vet.  The vet took one look and him and said he probably has Lymphoma (cancer in the lymph nodes).  After taking a biopsy of his lymph node and testing it he said that it was defiantly cancer.  Of course we were all devastated and we started to look at the best option for our Buger-Man with the least amount of suffering.  The vet said that the best option for him was to put him on Prednisone a steroid that often causes the swelling to go down, for his appetite to increase, and to give him a few more months of quality life.  We decided that was the best option for us and within 12 hours Ruger was back to his old self.  I mean literally he is 12 years old and likes to lay around, eat, and gets lots of love. 

(Ruger Likes to Sleep in Weird Positions)

So far Ruger is doing really well and we feel very thankful to have him for a while longer.  I just hope that I can make the right decision when it is time for him to go on.  Ruger has been part of our family for almost nine years and was our first baby.  We got him and Mesa from the Humane Society of the Palouse where I worked while Monroe and I went to school in Moscow.  We all four lived in a little apartment and spent much time going to the dog park and walks in the nearby hills.  He has fit into our family so well and Mason and Madelyn love him so much.
Mesa our other dog and Ruger are inseparable and worry the affect on Mesa when it is Ruger time.  We have decided that another dog is in our future to help all of us morn Ruger.  But for now we are so thankful to have had him in our family and count the days that he remains with us.


Monday, April 30, 2012

Dear Madelyn,

Why did this happen to you, such a girl full of beauty, smiles, happiness, love, and determination? We thank the lord every day for your wonderful spirit in our family and would never trade any of our moments with you. It is because of your spirit, beauty, smiles, happiness, love, and most of all determination that has and will get you through this trial the Doctors call Doose. You have never let anything get in your way and I know you never will.

I have spent many months thinking about this post and as you can see it has taken me many months and even going on years and tries to let my heart be in the right place. I guess that is what such a big trial will do to your Mom. So here is the post, I hope it will show you some clarification when you are old enough to sit down and read it about my take on the happens of the situation.

A cruise was booked for your Dad and I, in January 2011 Grandpa and Grandma where so excited to have you and Mason in their home for the seven days that we would be gone, and you and Mason where excited to have Grandpa and Grandma to your selves. The night before we where to leave Madelyn you fell over for no explained reason in a restaurant. I or no one saw you fall over and I thought you tripped over a chair you where climbing on. Later that night while hanging out with Grandma you fell over again for no explained reason. I was little worry but the tickets were bought and everything in place, we would continue with our trip.

While on our way to Denver where our flight left Grandma called me and said that you had, had another falling spell. I was worried but having just taken you in a few day before to the doctor for an ear infection I thought that it may have been a dizzy spell from driving over many mountains to get to grandpa's and grandma's house. I had grandma call a local pediatrician who said that she should just take her to the ER as they didn't have the resources to deal with a case like yours.

In the ER they ran many tests including, urine analysis, blood tests, chest X-Ray, and a MRI with nothing showing the reason for your falling spells and then in the midst of explanations from the Pediatrician you had a Grand Mall Seizure that lasted for a few minutes and you stopping breathing for 30 seconds. At that time the doctor contacted the Children's Hospital in Denver and was told to prepare you to be life flighted to Denver because of the Grand Mall Seizure and your stopping breathing they didn't want to leave you without constant medical Care.

This all happened while your dad and I where on the air on our way to Ft. Lauder dale and I was on the phone when I could be with your pediatrician in Grand Junction and she assured me to continue on my trip that it was probably just from her ear infection as these can cause children to have falling spells. However when we landed in Ft. Lauder dale I immediately called Grandma and she told me to fly back that you where being life flighted to Denver. The next flight back was not for 12 hours so we had to spend a sleepless night in a hotel waiting for the morning to come so we could get back to you.

The Flight back to Denver was so long and landing could not come soon enough. When it did we had the hardest time finding Children's Hospital and so it took us an hour longer to get to you. 

When we got to your room the doctors were conducting a test on your brain waves to see what kind of seizues you were having.  You had nodes and wires all over your head with gauze wraped around your head to keep the nodes on, what a site to come in and see you and it just broke my heart to see you so miserable.

My first seizure that I saw and experienced was a Grand Mall and you stoped breathing for 15 seconds which sent me over the edge.  The nurse was so good and immeditally push the emergency button and with in 30 seconds your room was swarming with doctors.  You started to breath on your own thankfully and after your seizure was over you were really upset and wouldn't stop crying for 30 minutes.  Apparently this was your reaction to seizures, most kids sleep after, but I imagine it is really upsetting and confussing after. 

You had a few smaller seizures that night and the doctors decided to put you on Valuim to help the seizures stop immeditally which they did and the next morning our wonderful little Madelyn came back to us.  You remained seizure free for the next two day which was such a wonderful blessing.  I owe it all to the many, many prayers that were given on your behalf. 

Taking you home was one of the scariest thing that I have ever done.  I felt like I was taking home a brand new alien baby that I didn't know how to take care of.  What was I going to do if you had another seizure and stopped breathing again.  You had a cute pink helment and many family around you to watch you every move, and that is what we did.  Your Grandpa and Grandma Whipple helped us as we went back to their house for the rest of the week which was so nice to have thier help.  Your didn't have anymore seizures for 6 months, I started to think that the whole experience was a dream and you had been mis-diagnose.   But every time you grow you seem to start having drop seizures we have to have blood work and increase the dose of your medicine.  We just feel so so blessed that you don't have a big seizure everyday like the doctore made us beleive that you would when we left the hospital. 

You have been growing amazing with no delays or learning disabilities.  You are able to be the wonderful normal girl that you were before you were diagnosed with the exception of having to take medicine 2-3 times a day.  I am so thankful everyday that we have you with us and I pray that we continue to be as blessed as we have been. 
Love you Baby Girl,