Monday, November 25, 2013

Friday, November 8, 2013

Marshall's Appetite

Marshall just downed three fried eggs, two slices of bacon and a full glass of milk! Then, he asked for his vitamins! Do you think he is growing?

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Cedar Point

One of the highlights of our family trip to Ohio this fall was a visit to the world's best roller coaster amusement park: Cedar point in Ohio. The kids had a blast despite the chilly and windy weather.

Marshall's Playground Fall

Marshall gave his dad a scare while we were at the playground. He was demonstrating for me his skills on some rings and lost his grip, falling face first into the gravel. A bloody forehead, bloody nose and bloody lip in combination with a blood stained white T-shirt made for a scary sight initially. He looked like he was in a boxing match! Fortunately when we got him cleaned up a little bit it was determined that a couple butterfly bandages on his forehead would do the job and make him look tough for a while.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Nyla and Tippy

The farm kitties are extremely friendly and come running up to the children every time they visit. They have been a huge sourcre of entertainment for the little ones this year. I just hope they can survive the cold this winter.
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Monday, November 4, 2013

Da Fonz

Gemma has ridden her new horse, Fonzi, almost every single day since he arrived from Ohio! He's been a super good boy so far but I'm still buying her an air vest!

Favorite Farm Kitties

Luke and Marshall with their favorite farm kittens, Zuri and Marvin.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Nyla Picking Out Peanut's Feet

This beautiful fall weather has brought us lots of opportunities for fun at the farm. Nyla, now just 3 1/2, takes great pride in taking care of her pony. She is learning there is lots to do before she can hop on for a ride! 
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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Halloween 2013

This year we only had 4 kids in costumes. Gracie went to her friend Lena's house to watch a scary movie.
Nyla was a cute little Zebra

Luke was a mean looking Hulk!

Marshall was a very serious Iron Man!

Gemma and her friend Addie prowled the neighborhood as cat burglars!
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Monday, October 21, 2013

Visit To Ashtabula

The kids are showing Grandma Cochran some tricks on their iPad.

Nyla jumped right into Grandma's arms and gave her lots of hugs!

Luke is listening to Grandpa's baseball stories that my mom has written down!
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Friday, October 18, 2013

Gracie's 10 Week Update

Exactly 10 weeks ago tonight at this time we were sitting in a hospital room in Kansas City watching Gracie receive morphine through an IV. We were being strong for her, but deep down we were terrified of what the morning would bring.  I just sat and watched over her all night long as the nurses checked her vitals periodically and tried to make her comfortable.  I was in conversation with God the whole night through, praying, begging Him to spare her going through surgery.

Our prayers were answered and Gracie did not need surgery, but we were told she would spend the next 3-4 months in a wheelchair.  We took her home and moved her into our first floor music room with a hospital bed, a bedside commode and a wheelchair.  That whole first week is a distant memory now and all the medical equipment was recently picked up.

At her 4 week follow-up appointment we were told Gracie's pelvic fractures were healing very well and that she was stable enough to try getting up on crutches.  She did so with minimal pain and by 8 weeks she was walking, pain free, with no crutches!  The doctor called her healing "highly unusual" and stated that many people with these types of fractures still have pain up to a year later!  He wants her to take it easy for another couple weeks but says she's cleared to go out for basketball later this fall and can ride her horse as early as January!

I wanted to get a nice shot of her tonight for this post but she is busy packing for a trip and refused to pose for me. So instead you just get these shots of my sassy teenager, frustrated with me and raiding my bathroom for hair supplies.  I couldn't be happier for her.

We praise God for her miraculous healing and offer sincere gratitude to all you dear prayer warriors who lifted her up during this difficult time.

Gemma's First Season of Volleyball

This was Gemma's first year playing volleyball. She was very scrappy and I predict she will be improve quickly over these next few years.
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Saturday, October 5, 2013

Luke Turns 9!

My big guy turned 9 today! I can hardly believe he is growing so fast. I love that he still wants to hold my hand and sit on my lap. I will hold on to his hand for as long as I possibly can!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

The Marshmallow Test

I recently was reading about how children's ability to delay gratification corellated with their prospects for success later in life.  The article referenced "The Marshmallow Test" for children, so I conducted my own informal research study on the back deck with the kids.

Gracie, Gemma, Luke, Marshall and Nyla were each given one large marshmallow with these instructions.  "You may eat this marshmallow at any time.  However, if you can wait for five minutes before you eat it, I will give you a second marshmallow."

Gracie, 12: walked off to visit with a friend and came back 5 minutes later.  No sweat.
Gemma, 10: sat still and tried to get Luke to eat his marshmallow.
Luke, 8: stared at his marshmallow and fought the good fight against his instincts.
Marshall, 5: held his marshmallow in his hands and licked his fingers--but didn't take a bite.
Nyla, 3:  Nyla waited mere miliseconds before shoving the entire marshmallow in her mouth.  With gusto.

After five minutes, I announced, "Congratulations to those of you who were able to wait!  You may have your marshmallow AND here's a second one to enjoy.  Don't tell your mother that I gave you two large marshmallows in the name of science, please."

"Nyla, you don't get a second marshmallow because..."  Like a lioness after its prey, Nyla LEAPED up on the deck table and crossed it as she lunged at my throat. "I WANT A MARSHMALLOW!!!!!!  I WANT A MARSHMALLOW!!!!

Study conclusion: Delayed gratification skills are helpful but not necessary to get marshmallows when the subject can take the entire bag using hostile force.  :)

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Nyla's 1st Day of Preschool

Yesterday was Nyla's 1st day of preschool.  Not quite 3 1/2 yet, she is wise beyond her years.  We are having a terrible time convincing her to sleep in her own bed and even if she starts there, we always have a visitor in our bed by morning. This is how our conversation went this morning:

ME: Nyla, now that you're a big girl and going to preschool,  you can start sleeping all night in your "big-girl bed".
NYLA: Mommy! I'm still just a little girl! I'm only going to preschool, not big girl school! I'm still too little to sleep all alone!  You only sleep alone when you're in big girl school!

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Sunday, September 1, 2013

Gracie's Three Week Update-Special Gifts

It's been 3 weeks since Gracie's injury and while she is feeling much better, the long hours of slow-passing days have started to take their toll.  We are so thankful that her school has been willing to embrace iPad technology and allow her to Facetime in to most of her classes.  Staying connected to her classmates has really lifted her spirits!  She has also been blessed to receive many special visitors, cards, phone calls and gifts from friends, family and fellow Pony Clubbers from all over the US. Some days she even receives phone calls from complete strangers, Pony Clubbers, just calling to say "Hi" and tell her they are thinking of her and rooting for her full recovery.

For me personally, it's been an extremely emotional 3 weeks and that's why this one particular gift from the grandmother of one of Gracie's closest friends, Malia Rolf,  has so deeply touched my heart.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Gracie's 2 Week Update

Wanted to let you know we had a great appointment at UNMC yesterday. X-rays revealed there has been no movement in Gracie's pelvis in the last week which is really great news.  This means we can finally put the threat of surgery to rest!  The doctor was really encouraged that Gracie had not used any pain medication except ibuprofen in the past week and said her pelvis is very stable and healing well.  He even offered to let her try using crutches at home soon and estimated that, at this rate, she may be able to try putting some weight on her left leg as soon as 6 weeks from now!!  This is a BIG change from the earlier plan of 12 weeks in a wheelchair!

Gracie is spending more time each day up in her wheelchair and was able to take the car ride sitting upright in the front seat yesterday!  Her pain has been minimal and today she started "virtual school" by viewing her classes using Facetime on her iPad!!  We hope to get her physically back to school within the next week or so.

The doctor continues to encourage us saying Gracie's pelvis will heal completely and there is no reason to think she couldn't be back on her horse by Spring.  Her goal is to show Magic at Cornhusker Pony Club's annual and traditional April fundraiser, The Shaggy Horse Dressage Show!  I am already tearful with ideas for how we will celebrate her return to riding!

Thanks again for all your support and prayers! We are so grateful for the outpouring of well wishes from family, friends and The United States Pony Clubs from all over the country!!!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Marshall's Homemade Ship

This is a ship Marshall(5) created today.  It was quite a project that began when I caught him trying to saw through a pencil with a steak knife. He said he needed something to be the exact same length as the eraser so I traded him the pencil for some crayons. I was stunned by the symmetry he achieved on the wings using my large Cutco scissors.  He wouldn't tell me where he got the Christmas lights! LOL

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Thursday, August 15, 2013

Marshall's First Day of Kindergarten

Marshall had a great 1st day of school!  Special thanks to Grandma Seevers for going with him while Scott and I were at UNMC with Gracie. 

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