Wednesday, August 27, 2008
A couple of weeks ago, she and her husband were in a plane crash and critically burned.
(It actually happened in my hometown, St. Johns, AZ.)
Stephanie and Christian have been in the hospital (Maricopa County Hosptal burn unit) and will remain there for many months, trying to recover from their burns and injuries.
Their four children are with extended family, and I cry every time I read about the transitions that are happening because of the joy and love that are being shown by and to the entire extended family.
If you read my blog, and haven't yet done so, you can donate to the Stephanie and Christian Nielson Recovery fund. (Their care is expected to cost well into the millions, with their insurance being maxed out soon).
If you'd like to follow their story, see C Jane Enjoy it.
On Courtney's blog there is a donate to NieNie button that allows you to donate directly through paypal. (I couldn't get it posted on here...I am sorry, I did try.)
Two other ways to donate are:
***Donate to the "Stephanie Nielson Fund" at any Wells Fargo.
***Donate at any Bank of America under the "Christian and Stephanie Nielson Rehab Fund."
Also, if you'd like to read about Stephanie and her family before the accident, click here.
Thursday, August 21, 2008
I've been waiting for over a week, hoping to come up with something that is fun and insightful.
It's not happening.
But we're here, well into our second week of school, mucking out the house...trying to get it really clean (does that EVER happen with 9 people in one house?).
How are your back to school plans/adventures going?
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Later that afternoon, we headed on a hike with Lorin.
He took us up toward Silver Lake.
This was the view on the way to our hiking place.
Isn't it breathtaking?
The hike was along the side of a creek...and the kids had to stop multiple times to play in the ice cold water. The next day was Sunday, and after attending church with my mom, we headed up to a "cabin" over by Kamas to spend a couple of days with Coleen and her boys. It was a beautiful cabin...plently of space for all of us to spread out...and lots of beautiful views. The kids and their cousins enjoyed breakfast on the balcony.That afternoon, Coleen and I headed into Park City to hit the outlet mall there to do some very focused back-to-school shopping for Bug. All of the kids and P went on a walk near the cabin. This is one of the photos they snapped along the way. Miss M was in charge of the camera most of the way on this hike and we have about 20 botanical shots of the beautiful foilage along the way. Interesting to see what your kids think is "picture material". The next day, we headed up to one of P's family's favorite camping spots: Trial Lake. P was determined that we would make the hike to Star Lake, so we headed up that way after lunch. While the scenery was beautiful...the flies were awful! I've never been so bothered by bugs in my life. At least they weren't highly inclined to bite...(horse and deer flies, ugh!)This is one view of Star Lake. There are so many beautiful lakes in Utah...and beautiful areas surrounding them. Count your blessings my Utah friends.I snapped this shot as we were hiking out. P was teaching the family how to skip rocks, so they were searching for the right kind of skipping rocks.The next morning was our last at the cabin. I came out from getting ready to this sight: Yogamaster in the house (thanks to WiiFit). All of the kids saw him doing the yoga and joined in. It was priceless.
After an entire day of packing and cleaning the cabin, we headed down the hill, toward SLC, for a family picnic at Liberty Park...in honor of Diana and Lucky's birthdays. My little Lucky turned 1...and Diana's birthday was the next day. It was wonderful to see so much of our family...thank you so much for making the effort to be there!
Thursday we split up and both left the camera at home (I should have taken it with me!). P and the older kids went to Lagoon for the day, and my mom and I took the younger 3 on many adventures...including Chuck E. Cheese and Build-A-Bear. Both of those places were a new experience for Lucy and Bam-Bam...and they loved every minute of it. We were all exhausted at the end of the day, though.
Friday, we spent the day helping my mom clear room in her garage and put storage items in her "basement". It took a lot of time and energy, but the end result was well worth.
Our final item to finish up Friday afternoon was school shoe shopping. It was relatively painless...thanks to Famous Footwear and their buy one get one half off sale. It would nice to have more options here in NM...but we took advantage of the chance we had to shop somewhere other than Wal-Mart.
When we got back from shoe shopping, we started loading the Suburban for the drive home. We left pretty much on schedule, (4:30am) and hit Arches National Park on the way home. It is a beautiful park...lots to see from the road, and plenty of places to hike. We wanted another 5 or 6 hours to explore, but didn't have it in our schedule. Arches "cheese". Our final major stop of the day was at Four Corners National Monument. Here is our Four Corners "cheese" picture.
Just after this, the wind kicked up the dust so badly that the vendors started packing up their wares and heading home. It was an amazing dust/rain storm.
We finally pulled into our home about midnight on Saturday. 20 hours of traveling/sightseeing in one day was a little insane...but very worth it to be home. There really is no place like home.
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Pat's mom, (who recently broke her arm quite severely), and our dear friend, Susan.
We enjoyed a nice visit with both of them, and then made our way to our first stop.
This picture is of the kids playing ball the morning before our long drive to Utah.
The kids, getting a better look.
Bam-Bam was enthralled by the Grand Canyon. (Thanks to the Little Einsteins episode with the little red train falling into the GC, he knew all about it.) Yup, it's straight down.
The next morning, we were up bright and early (after a midnight arrival), to catch the Pioneer Days parade.
We opted to go to Spanish Fork for a little "smaller" celebration.
My kids have never had any celebration for Pioneer Days except a Stake potluck at the church field and ramadas...so it was nice to have them experience a little more intense celebration.
Here we are getting settled for the parade.
We watched an amazing fireworks show the night of the 24th down in Spanish Fork.
My sister surprised us and came up for the weekend. It was wonderful to be able to spend time with her. She is a joy to be around, and it's been way too long since the kids really got to spend time with her.
Friday, we had a nice BBQ with Uncle Lorin, Aunt Julie and Chantal (and Wrinkles the dog). Uncle Lorin had just gotten out of the hospital the day before, so we were grateful that he was able to spend time with us. Chantal had watched the kids earlier in the day so that we could attend the Mt. Timponogas temple together...so P, Mom Lunt, Rebecca and I all got to go together, so the kids loved seeing her again. We lit sparklers that night, and the kids had a wonderful time just running and playing.