Monday, February 19, 2018

President's Weekend and Flu-like Symptoms

Good grief.  How many times have I blogged about this family and illnesses on a three-day weekend?  Too many to count and regardless, it happened again.  The kids had Friday off and had a fun day, feeling healthy, shooting baskets outside, playing video games inside, etc. Glenn and I were going to go on a date Friday night but decided to postpone for one night because he had to work a little late.  (Spoiler alert, we still haven't had that date.)  On Saturday morning, Reina woke us up a little early because her stomach hurt.  She was feeling puny so I took her temperature and she had a mild fever.  She complained that her legs hurt a little bit and I started to see the rest of our weekend mapped out in influenza-land.  As Saturday went on, her fever got higher and she was basically glued to the couch.  I called her doctor's office to see if we needed to get her tested for the flu and they recommended that we just keep her at home with pain medicine and lots of cool drinks.  Cool as in cold, not as in trendy or stylish.  I'm not sure why I need to make that point. 

So that's what we've been doing since Saturday.  We did catch Will's last basketball game and went to church in stages.  Will had acolyte training which was very exciting (for me anyway!) and he'll be on the list to acolyte soon.  Today was cold and snowy and luckily we all had the day off so no one is missing school or work, yet. 

Reina seems to be over the worst of it today and I'm hoping one more day of rest will get her back on her feet.  In the meantime, I'm playing that fun game of "how do I feel?"  I think I feel fine?  My nose is little runny but I'm mostly fine.  I'm fine, right?  Oh Reina just sneezed in my face?  I'm fine!  Glenn's fine.  Will's fine?  Will's stomach hurts?  Oh I'm sure it's something completely unrelated.  He's fine.  Everyone's fine! 

We are also disinfecting everything in sight and Glenn commented that he's been washing his hands so much they almost hurt.  But everyone is fine! 
Saturday.  Reina and her cat nurse who is concerned about her symptoms and only slightly cold and wanting to snuggle something overly warm.  

Will suggested I B&W this photo for a better effect.  We were wanting to document the number of people and pets on one couch.  2 + 2.  Look at that handsome kid!  
Coco sitting on my work laptop.  She doesn't approve of working on a state/federal holiday.  She's also hungry.  

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

A letter to the birthday girl

I started this letter on Sunday night but our wireless was wonky and then it was wonky again on Monday night and then Tuesday night we had volleyball so here it is Valentine's Day and Reina's annual birthday letter Day.  

Dear Reina:
Yesterday, you celebrated your 9th birthday.  Nine years ago this morning, I woke up, dropped your brother off at daycare and drove to the hospital with Dad and your two Grandmas.  After a few hours delay, we welcomed you into the world and my life hasn’t been the same since.  All weekend, I’ve been struck by the thought that in nine more years, we’ll be celebrating your 18th birthday.  But let’s not go there yet, okay? 

On the morning of your birthday, you came busting in our room at 6:30 and announced that you could get up now because Dad said you had to wait until 6:30 and it was 6:30 and let’s open presents!  I told you to go get my phone and bought myself a few more minutes reading you previous letters I’d written to you on your birthday.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t talk you into going back to sleep.  We all
got up, you opened your presents and we headed off to a birthday breakfast.  I hope on your 18th birthday, I can read all of these letters without bawling my head off, sweet girl. 

Reina, you are such a delight. There’s really no other word. You firmly march to the beat of your drum and you surprise me every day with some funny comment, interesting observation or fashion choice. You have a wide variety of interests. At school, you’ve read books about everything from Anne Frank to the Loch Ness Monster to cartoon cats from Japan. You like cartoons, murder mysteries, wildlife documentaries (as long as none of the animals die) and are developing a slight interest in chic flicks on the Hallmark Channel. (I blame/credit Grandma H for that one.)
Reina - you fill up my camera with Reina selfies like this one.  
Marching to the beat of your own drum in these snazzy purple glitter boots you tried to talk me into at Target. Instead of tennis shoes.....  
You are a good little sister and big cousin. Your patience for your little cousins is a little more endless than the patience for your brother but that's probably how it should be.  You and Will have invented your own game involving a balloon, the rug in the living room and a complicated scoring system that seems to usually benefit Will but you don't mind and your giggles fill up the house, along with the sounds of breakable stuff hitting the floor.  

A few weeks ago, you woke up on a school morning a little earlier than usual and came running in to get me to wake up and look at the moon.  You said it was amazing!  I tried to buy a few more minutes of sleep by suggesting that you get my phone and take some pictures.  You took about 10 of these shots before you came back to get me and said that I needed to see it in person.  Reina, I hope you never lose that unbridled enthusiasm for weekday morning moon sightings and everything else that appears outside your window.  Happy birthday sweet girl, you are so loved.  

The Moon by Reina

Monday, February 5, 2018


We are in the thick of basketball season around here.  There's college ball on the tv most nights when Will has control of the remote.  The Wyo Cowboys are having an entertaining season.  Will knows more about the NBA than I've ever known, except for that one season when the Nuggets were fun to follow.  Closer to home, we have a lot of 5th Grade basketball to watch.  Will's playing on the school team whose practices and games are right after school.  He also plays on a city league team and those games are Saturday afternoons.  When he's not on the court, he's dribbling the ball in our den or shooting baskets outside (when the wind isn't howling and the temperature is tolerable).  He's making great strides on the court, too.  He's shooting the basket more and has already beaten his point total from last season.  He's more confident dribbling and passing and he plays some tough defense. I know, I know, enough Mom.  It's fun to watch Will play basketball. 
My sports photography continues to need work.  
Dribbling an invisible basketball or just running up the court?  
Sweaty and serious. 
Hanging with his good friend, waiting for their turn to sub in. 

Monday, January 29, 2018


I had foot surgery last week. This is probably a good time to remind the Pauley kids that a Morton's Neuroma is probably in their future - it's a hereditary thing and so far Pop-pop, great aunt, aunt and mom have all had it removed.  As far as surgeries go, it hasn't been too bad, just a lot of couch time and staying off of your feet. I've had some sweet nurses taking care of me.  Reina offers to help me up the stairs.  Will brings me sprite a lot, which is so sweet and not at all because he wants to open up the bottle and get a few sips for himself.  Glenn brought me chocolate.  Vicky has brought me snacks and much needed company and entertainment from toddler cousins.  Friends and co-workers have stopped by which has helped break the monotony of lying on the couch for days.  

Coco has been more snuggly than I expected.  Each night I wake up to find her curled up close.  Is she being sweet or just waiting to see if I expire and she can assume her rightful throne?  

Coco has also helped me knit.  Glenn had to grab her as she made a dash for the stairs with that giant ball of yarn in her mouth.  
T & T have been sofa companions and I think they are happiest that I'm home for another day.  It's much more comfortable to watch the neighborhood from the warm living room instead of the cold backyard.  
My view. Thank goodness for George Clooney movies to pass the time.  

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Christmas piano recital - a little late

Last month, last year, feels like quite a while ago, Reina played the piano at the mall to help promote the Tree of Hope ceremonies.  She played last year, too.  This year, I think she was a little less nervous, but not completely nerve-free. She played three songs as duets with her teacher.  Jingle Bells, Up on the Housetop and my favorite, Silent Night.  She did a great job!  She was very poised and serious but played beautifully.  I'm amazed at how much she's learned and she's raced by what little piano knowledge I had.  I usually have to google base clef notes to even begin to help her out.  She's working on reading notes in both base clef and treble clef, learning sharps and flats and the coolest part (to me) is that she's getting that left hand to play along.  It's not always easy to get her to practice but boy do I love to listen to her play.  

Reina and her piano teacher 

My favorite piano girl

Sunday, January 14, 2018


The monsters and I headed up to Snowy Range Ski Area for a day of skiing on this three-day weekend.  I combined all of my birthday money (thanks parents and parents-in-law!), bought us all new ski gloves, packed some lunch and headed over the hill.  Glenn still doesn't ski but we have hopes to drag him along next time.  For the last few years, the kiddos and I have managed to squeeze in a ski day or two and Will and Reina are turning into such great skiers.  I wish we had the time and the unlimited ski passes to go more often.  Today was a little windy and chilly at times but we had a lot of fun.  Will skied down a few black runs by himself and spent a chunk of time skiing on this own because he and I had different definitions of what "meet mom at the bottom of the hill" means.  (He thinks you wait about 30 seconds and when no one appears, you take the next lift up and just ski.)  Reina and I tackled some new runs - or at least some new-to-Reina runs and we made it to the bottom of the mountain each time with no crashes and smiles on our faces. Seriously, these two are getting better each time we go and I know it won't be long before they leave me in the dust, or at least take a few easy runs with mom for old time's sake.  

Reina/mom selfie at lunch break.  
Will eating lunch and trying to watch the AFC playoff game over my shoulder.  
Will chilling (ha ha) at the end of the afternoon.  He took a hard route down to the bottom and was ready to be down.  
Reina decided to take the last lift up for one more run after Will and I were done.  
Someone keeping herself occupied on the long drive home.  

Monday, January 1, 2018

New Year and how we spent our winter break

Our Christmas break has officially come to an end.  The backpacks are sitting by the front door, kids were in bed at a relatively normal time and it's back to the grind in the morning.  We didn't take a trip or have many big adventures, truthfully there were a few days when we barely left the house, but I think I can say that we had a really nice break.  

What did we do?  We watched some movies, played "The Oregon Trail" card game and laughed and laughed, spent time with cousins and other relatives, read books, had a few playdates, cooked and cleaned, shopped, played with new toys and just hung out together.  

Coco spent most of her break in my new Broncos-themed bag from Vicky.  If it zipped on top, I could use it to carry Coco around town.  Luckily for her, it doesn't.  

We shopped and some of us found other ways to entertain ourselves while shopping.  

The temperatures were bitterly cold the past few weeks.  Luckily, the dogs sleep inside.  On fleece blankets and a couch a few feet from the pellet stove.  Trigger has a rough life.  

Will and all three pets.  The chickens were snug in their coop or I'm sure they would've found room on the couch too.  
So that about wraps it up.  Oh, we also watched a lot of football and cheered on the Wyo Cowboys in their bowl win (yah!!) and survived the end of the Broncos season.  It'll be a little tough to get back to reality tomorrow but we can't wait to see what 2018 has in store for this crazy household!