Thursday, September 24, 2015

Media Day...

Today was quite the day around here! Remember the post from a couple weeks ago about Jaelyn's robotic arm? Well somehow word got out to a couple media outlets, so she has been busy freaking out and giving some interviews.

First of all our local newspaper interviewed her last Saturday, and was on the front page of yesterday's paper. I particularly like that they included the following from Mike, rather than overstating that this arm helps this poor girl do what she couldn't do before:

“She could really do anything she wanted,” he said.
The difference is in other people’s perceptions of Jaelyn: how the E-Nable arm has changed that first look.
"Other children gawked or touched Jaelyn’s arm. Adults asked insensitive questions. Fed up with the ogling, she would sometimes stuff her arms into the pockets of her sweatshirt."
“She’s not afraid of it, but people gave her pity and she never asked for that,” said her father.
“Now it’s ‘Look isn’t that neat,’ instead of, ‘Oh, that’s sad.’”
For Jaelyn, that’s made all the difference.

You can read the article here.

Then yesterday, King 5 news out of Seattle came to our school for an interview. After that they headed to Oak Harbor HS to interview the robotics team. Was a bit of a circus at lunch, with all the middle schoolers wanting to get on TV, but the piece turned out great. In case you missed it....
I can't figure out how to embed it here, so click here to watch the clip. I love that Kaia got on camera too (she was hoping), and that Jaelyn mentioned the cat tail Kaia asked for!

Her 15 minutes of fame are now officially over, but we still have our amazing girl!

Sunday, September 20, 2015

China Follow Up....

My apologies for not following up on my China trip earlier. To sum it up, the trip was good. For the most part agendas went as planned (other than our hotel in Beijing being shut down by the government, so getting to stay at a nicer one), team members stayed healthy (okay, maybe one tummy issue, but at least that didn't hit until after the children, in Beijing), and lots of love was given and received.  In fact, positive changes were seen. However, I can't help but notice doors slowly closing in on some opportunities for transparency. One of those being that we didn't have freedom in taking photos and video taping like we usually do, and there were signs posted reminding us of this. The photos that we took were when we requested and in public, so since I had less to choose from, the quality for my video was not as good as usual. But as always, the video speaks much more eloquently than I can express...

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Can You Hear That???

Shhh...can you hear that sound? Neither can I! That's how quiet our new dishwasher is.  My super hubby installed a new sink and dishwasher during his last week of summer, while the rest of us were back to school (which ultimately led to a new garbage disposal too). Being the last dishwasher we bought was before our kitchen remodel back in 2000, not to mention the fact that it was getting loud and periodically leaking, we decided it was time to suck it up and buy a new one. Of course, since we would be switching over to stainless steel, we might as well switch out the scratched and chipped porcelain sink to stainless steel also. Being we were so pleased with at the long life of the Kenmore dishwasher we had, we stuck with the brand, and found a hard to pass deal at Sears. Sadly, our local Sears lost business when they wouldn't match price or give free delivery like the online Sears would. Doesn't make for good business to me, but who am I to judge?

Not sure why the photo makes my cabinets look like they have blue trim, but they are definitely all white.  The sink is one big single bowl, which I love because it makes the sink seem so much larger without the divider in the middle. It also comes with a rack inside so that larger items don't leave scratches.

Two of my friends recently replaced their dishwashers too. Unfortunately both of their's leaked underneath their flooring. Thankfully my stud husband got it right the first time! Now honey, about the refrigerator....

Thursday, September 10, 2015


Check out Jaelyn's new super power! The Robotics Club at Mike's high school has been working on this since last spring. It's made by using a 3-D printer.

She was pretty stoked to get it today, and can't wait to show it off. They are already talking about making her one a step-up from this one. I'll let Jaelyn and her smile tell the rest of the story....

And look how not excited her sister is to shake her hand...
I'm sure this won't be the last time you see me post about this...

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Busy Time of Year...

Well it's that time of year, between Kellen's birthday, a new school year, and Joshua's birthday, where life goes from zero to sixty for our family, in no time flat. 

Kellen's birthday was rather low key.  Mom and Dad paid off a medical bill as a gift, and sisters shopped for candy at the Dollar Store. Isn't growing up fun?  Dinner at one of Kellen's favorite restaurants with family and friends was on us, so not all was lost.

The beginning of school came way too early this year for the girls and I. Since Labor Day was so late in September, the start of the year was moved up a week for us. Yep, I said us. The girls are now going to school with me, so three of us are in the sixth grade together! Despite many nerves and questions, they are off to a great start. I think their math teacher is one of their favorites;)

Since Joshua is on a BIG birthday year, and the weekend right before the big day was a holiday weekend, we decided to make the trek to WSU to celebrate. Three of the four times I have made the trip over to Pullman it has rained. And this time it actually poured, and thundered and lightninged, and poured some more. I thought the east side was in a drought?  The girls and I hung in there til halftime of the football game, but then we had to warm up. Mike and Josh were troopers, lasting the entire game, only to witness a loss in the final two minutes.

Since there weather was so uncooperative, it seems most of the time we spent eating! We hit great restaurants for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and had lots of laughs over dessert.

We came home Sunday to avoid Labor Day traffic, and also so that Mike could get some last minute school prepping done before his start on Tuesday.  Big brother Kellen headed over to spend a few days with Joshua to celebrate Josh's birthday bro style.  Love the brotherly love! Now a short breather before the October celebrations hit us...