Sunday, November 30, 2008

Thanksgiving Weekend - Trip to The Lake

Friday 11/28/08

Jessica got to go see Mia for a short visit and ride this morning. She said Mia did well, and she was very pleased.

We headed out for our Thanksgiving trip with extended family by mid-afternoon. This year it was at Lake DeGray. The first night was time for everyone to arrive and visit. By our (later than usual) dinner, Jessica was tired and went back to the room to lay down. But that allowed her to be able to join the group later for hot chocolate and brownies as we all (all 13 of us) gathered in one room to visit.

Saturday 11/29/08

This morning while the guys all went golfing (Matthew's first golfing experience and he loved it!), the girls went on the trail ride. It's an easy slow-paced ride through the woods along the bank of the lake. Then lunch at the hotel. Our annual family pictures. A game of Scrabble - that Jessica won (and spelling is not her forte, but it was a group effort). And the resort was having a square dance, so we joined in for one song. And ended the evening with a late dinner at the local pizza place.

Sunday 11/30/08

The whole group was meeting for breakfast at 8:45a.m. I struggled to get Jessica out of bed at 8:30a.m. She didn't budge. Sound asleep. After a while of trying, she finally woke up enough. She was tired and looked so as well. But, we said our good-byes and were back at home soon. Jessica was able to rest on the couch the rest of the day. We all had fun on our trip. Jessica did ok for the most part, but said she was tired throughout the weekend. By late-afternoon today, she was saying she "doesn't feel good."

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thanksgiving Day

Today is a day to reflect. As the four of us sat at the breakfast table, we each got a piece of paper and wrote things that we are thankful for. Even though Jessica has been sick this year, we're thankful for our health. Even though we've had a ton of medical bills and the economy isn't good, we're thankful for our finances and what we have.

  • Jessica: food, family, friends, house, toys, church, hot water, trips, Mia, Markee, Olson, & Pumpkin
  • Matthew: pets, banana cream pie shakes, food, clothes, tv, house, family, weekends, holidays, toys, trampoline
  • Steve: family, jobs, health, house, finances (lack of large bills), clothing, Jesus Christ, vehicles, neighbors, neighborhood, 4 seasons, relationship with wife and kids, pets, co-workers, friends, church
  • Laura: family, kids, husband, that Jessica is better than she was, the doctors, laughter, our house, my job, my health, our finances, pets, evenings with the family, hot chocolate, food, sunshine

There's so much more. There's no burden too big. No perceived need or want that really matters. We have so much to be thankful for!

Our Thanksgiving consisted of the usual ... eating and more eating. We spent time with family, and Jessica held up ok.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Wednesday 11/26/08

Today was the first day of Thanksgiving break from school. Jessica and Matthew just hung out around the house most of the day. Jessica was a little tired, but she seemed to want to get out, and asked to go Christmas shopping for gifts for our pets and her new cousin. We made it to the pet section of the store, since it isn't too far inside the store. But when it was time to head to the baby section in the back corner, Jessica was done. That was too much. And tonight she's tired, and has said that she "doesn't feel good."

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Tuesday 11/25/08

I asked Jessica today if she thinks she's better. And I'm not the only one that's asked her that. It's seemed like she's had some improvement over the last week or so. She's seemed more normal - at least her normal. No real crashes. She agrees that she's some better; at least her throat's not hurting like it was, but she's not as improved as she'd like.

She took her Algebra "semester exam" today, and made an 89%. And that's with the computer online class counting 2 questions wrong that weren't. This was an online timed test (50 minutes) for 57 questions. My dad says she was a little slow thinking through it sometimes and getting to the answer, but he just watched as she worked through it. She should still finish this one class mid-January.

Jessica and I went to a couple of stores this afternoon to do a little Christmas shopping. And she seemed to do ok. Actually, as tall as she's gotten and as long of legs as she has, when we were walking through the store, I found myself doing doubletime to keep up with her!

Now it's time for brownies and tv from the couch.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Monday 11/24/08

Jessica didn't sleep well last night, but doesn't seem to be too bad today. As usual, she wakes up slow in the morning, but is better as the day goes.

I guess she's at the midway point for Algebra and reviewed today for the upcoming semester exam.

Jessica was invited to join her church lifegroup at the movies tonight to see Madagascar 2. They'd already picked the 8:20p.m. movie to see, which isn't the best time for Jessica. (Mornings and evenings generally are harder.) But, she seemed to think she'd be ok tonight, and she wanted to have a girls night out. And she did! And she did ok too. More good news! It was a much needed night out with friends.

And Matthew & I snuck in to see the movie too (but sat by ourselves)! It was a cute movie.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Sunday 11/23/08

We had a "first in a long time" today. Jessica got on the trampoline with Matthew (just for a few minutes) - and actually did a back hand spring - three times. That was the extent of all that she did on there, but that was the first time in almost a year that she's done any kind of jumping at all on the trampoline. That's some good news. Something to get excited about.

She was some tired today though. We had our Thanksgiving celebrations with Steve's side of the family today, and she held out ok, but was mostly sitting.

She had planned and hoped to go to the youth church services tonight, and even told some that she was planning on being there, but, when it came time, she said she didn't feel up to going - "not feeling too good." So, we ended the evening at home in the comfort of our living room watching another Christmas movie.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

The Week in Review - thru 11/22/08

Jessica hasn't been too bad this week, mainly just hanging around the house for the most part. My dad's here every morning by 9:30ish and they're working on Algebra till after lunch. There was one day this week she couldn't focus, and she might be a little tired, and she's had a few headaches, but they went away pretty well, and she's held up ok. She's been to Wal-Mart for short shopping trips a couple of times - once just because she wanted to get out of the house.

Today (Saturday), was a pretty good day. While Matthew spent about 7 hours raking and burning leaves and working in the yard, Jessica helped me around the house some by dusting the living room, straightening her room, and folding a load of clothes. (She hasn't earned allowances by doing chores in a long time, because she's not able to.) Then she and I went for a short visit to see Mia. She rode bareback just a little. Then the kids went out to eat with my parents while Steve and I went out with friends. It was a pretty good day. And we ended it with a Christmas movie. This is my favorite time of year - We enjoy the Christmas movies.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Monday 11/17/08

Jessica and my dad worked on Algebra for a little while this morning, and Jessica said she was having trouble focusing, a common problem with her CFS. But they got done what they needed to get done.

Jessica pointed out to me that today is Mia's one year anniversary. One year ago today, Jessica's dream came true and we got a horse - Mia - a rescue horse. So, today being her anniversary, I had to take Jessica to the stables. We weren't going to stay long, just a quick visit. Jessica got on her back bareback. But, for the most part, I noticed that she wasn't riding. She was sitting in place. Jessica later said that she was hoping that I hadn't noticed. In other words, she was tired, but trying not to let on.

So, on the way back from the stables, when I announced that dinner tonight was going to be "fend-for-yourself-night," Jessica said "can you fend for me?" (since she was running low on energy). Every so often I can get away with fend-for-yourself-nights, which usually consists of everyone heating up what they want of leftovers or fixing something easy. So, tonight I fixed grilled cheese and ramen noodles for the kids - at their request. I find myself thinking that we do so many normal things (i.e. physically getting this or that) for Jessica that parents of a well child take for granted that their child will do themselves. But I am so happy to be able to do for and be there for her!

Jessica had a sore throat before bedtime.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

The Weekend Recap

Friday 11/14/08

Friday Jessica was in a good mood, and felt good enough to go shopping some (limited to 2 stores) after working on Algebra. We were trying to find a winter coat, but it looks like we waited too late.

Saturday 11/15/08

Saturday we just hung around the house most of the day, until the evening when we went to a dinner theater at church. What fun! The youth group put it on. Jessica wasn't able to participate, but got to attend, and the headache that she had when we got there seemed to disappear as the night went on. It was a good evening had by all. Jessica said her cheeks hurt from laughing so hard.

Sunday 11/16/08

Jessica seemed to feel ok today, and got to go on a very short (20 minute) visit to see her horse. And this evening she and Matthew even surprised us with Christmas shaped sugar cookies. (I have the best kids!) We got our Christmas tree put up too, as the kids had been asking for it all week.

Jessica mentioned that her throat hasn't been hurting like it was before her tonsillectomy (which had been daily), so maybe the tonsillectomy really has helped!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Thursday 11/13/08

We met with the 504 Plan Coordinators today. The online history class just wasn't working. The main problem is that there wasn't much meat in the text (including the use of cartoons) but the test questions were so detailed that the answers could not be found. So, no more history. We'll start over next semester. In the meantime, she'll finish Algebra II. We talked about next semester and what to take, how many classes to try, and whether in the classroom or as a homebound student. As the Coordinator said, at this rate, it'll take her at least an additional 2 years to graduate high school. It's a tough decision, as we don't know what she'll be able to do. And Jessica was "wondering if school could get any worse" (because she's getting so far behind)! And she is sick of Algebra II. (Though, she's got a 94% in there!) I know she is frustrated with it, and so are we. We're struggling with the decisions of what to do. Do we homeschool now? Are we qualified enough?

Jessica had to take another interim assessment test in Algebra while we were at the school, and she did pretty good considering she hasn't gotten to that material yet.

Jessica was happy that she "got to have some fun tonight" by going to art class. Thanks Nana!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Wednesday 11/12/08

There are two ladies at work that are very nice to ask me every day how Jessica is. And this morning when I was able to tell them that she had a good day yesterday, they told me that it seems that I'm saying that more often. I hope so!

Jessica's a little tired today, but doing ok.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Tuesday 11/11/08

Jessica's had a pretty good day! She looked really good today too.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Monday 11/10/08

In Jessica's words, today she's having a "crummy" day. She has a headache, tired, and a sore throat. My dad came over as usual to do Algebra, but her head started getting worse, so she went back to sleep. She's curled up, with her rabbit, on the couch about to take another nap right now.

Even though it was fun, I guess the weekend was too much.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

The Weekend 11/8-9/08

It was a good weekend! The guys were gone hunting most of the weekend, so while they had their father/son time, Jessica and I enjoyed some girl time. We went to the stables Saturday for Jessica to get in her Mia time - and she did! We were there about 3 hours. She rode, and even got the stable owner to give her a lesson. And she said they both (Jessica and Mia) did good!

Saturday night we had friends over for a pizza and movie night. We had fun. But it ended up being a little too late, especially for Jessica's bedtime.

Sunday, Jessica may have been just a little tired, but not too bad. She just hung around the house for the most part, and did just a very short (maybe 30 minutes) amount of Algebra to finish up a lesson.

Sunday night, she made it to the church youth services to meet some friends. (She tried last weekend, and couldn't stay.) I hung out at the church; she stayed for an hour and left when the other kids were about to eat. She was told that she looked so happy and healthy!

It's great that she got to have some fun this weekend and see some people!
She went to bed with a headache.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Friday 11/7/08

It's seemed like a fairly good day - Jessica's doing pretty good. It hasn't been a bad week. Jessica's mainly been just hanging around the house or doing schoolwork. We have gotten up with her though every single night in the middle of the night after getting a text message from her because she can't sleep (a standard CFS symtom).

The online classes aren't working as well as we'd hoped. Of course, it will take Jessica past the semester to finish since she started the online from the beginning at mid-semester. She's doing ok in Algebra, with my dad's (daily) help, even though there's a few glitches in the program itself. The History course is a different story (not set up well), and we have asked for Jessica to be transitioned back into the normal classwork (still homebound). With 5 weeks left in the semester, we'll have to see how it goes.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Wednesday 11/5/08

Jessica hasn't felt that good today. She's tired, but also she said she "just doesn't feel good" but doesn't know why. She's been working hard on school, and also didn't sleep well last night.

The last couple of days have been marathon school days working around 5 hours on Algebra and a couple of hours on History. When she couldn't sleep last night, she even tried to do some schoolwork in the middle of the night, but, being tired, she couldn't think well enough either.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Monday 11/3/08

Jessica worked on schoolwork a lot of the day today - Algebra with my dad and then History. I'm not sure about these online classes. Jessica doesn't like them saying that she doesn't learn anything from them and "The history stuff is so stupid! All it is is little cartoons, over and over and over." Steve and I are wondering when she'll be able to finish anyway, since she started over from the beginning about a month ago, but took off two weeks for her tonsillectomy, and there's only 6 weeks left in the semester. She can go into the next semester, but then what will that do to her spring schedule? We'll just keep pushing on and see how it goes...

She's somewhat tired and dragging tonight.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Sunday 11/2/08

This afternoon Jessica was feeling good and got to ride her horse. She wasn't tired; her throat wasn't hurting, and her ears just a little.

She'd been planning all week to go to the youth service at church tonight - she hadn't gone to in months and months - and the fact that she was feeling good today seemed to be working well toward that. There was a parent meeting at 4:30 first. The sermon starts at 5:30 and about 45 minutes later is the small groups that she was hoping to go to to meet friends. After the parent meeting, we met back up with her and she said her back was hurting and she just didn't feel up to staying. She was achey with her back, neck, etc. hurting. So, she said hi to a couple of people and we left. We'll try again another time.