Sunday, June 26, 2011

Roy Brian Stehmeier

Roy Brian Stehmeier (my cousins first baby) was born with a genetic disease called surfactant deficiency. This means that his body does not make a protein that keep his lungs open for breathing. We were told that there is no cure or treatment. This is a very rare disease, in the few cases that have been seen most children only live to be 3 months old.
Nadia and Travis were both tested and are both carriers of this terrible disease. There is a 1 in 4 chance this could happen to their other children.
This is what she typed up a few days later on face book:

"Our sweet baby boy, Roy Bryan Stehmeier, left our arms this morning and returned to his Heavenly Father. The past six weeks have been the most special and amazing weeks of our lives. For six weeks Travis and I were privileged to spend time with one of God's angels, a very special spirit and son to us. We will miss him greatly, but we know that we will be a family forever and will one day be reunited with our sweet boy. We are so grateful that Heavenly Father chose us to be Roy's parents, he will forever be in our hearts. May Heavenly Father watch over and protect our son. Roy, God be with you until we meet again. We will love you forever!"

A few days later they buried their sweet baby boy in Santa Barbara, California. I can't imagine how deeply painful that must of been for them. Our prayers and thoughts are with you both!

Nadia then wrote a note to Roy saying,
"To Roy: Save our place in heaven, we will do everything we can to join you one day. We will love you forever and cannot wait to see you again! God be with you until we meet again :)"

College Roommate Reunion

 IN college I had the best roommates, ever. I still am in contact with most of them and it's always so fun to reunite with them. Yesterday I met Michelle and Trish, two of my college roommates, downtown for a little shopping and lunch. We headed across the street to Blue Lemon and it was yummy. It was so fun catch up and laugh about the past.

 Later that night we headed to another roommate, Janae, and had a BBQ there. Janae and Adam have a beautiful home with a huge yard. While the children ran around wild, we all chatted, laughed and reminisced of college life.
 Janae, Trish and Michelle are not only wonderful women they are also still great friends. Thanks for another fun evening!

Kidney Transplant

My mom has three older sisters. One of her older sisters has five daughters. One of those daughters, Jeana, has had a ton of health problems for as long as I can remember. She is diabetic. She had a ton of heart problems with major surgeries that followed.

About four years ago her kidney went out and she had to get dialysis a few times a week. She has been on the donor waiting list for over three years. She has been called four other times about receiving a donor kidney but ended up to not be compatible. Jeana has three sisters who flew up to Alaska (where Jeana lives) to visit last Monday. They had many fun activities planned all week and had a blast with each other.

On Thursday night Jeana received a call that she is number 3 on the waiting list. Pretty neat, but she knew not to get too excited. Early Friday morning she received another call and the doctors at University of Utah Hospital wanted her to fly right down to receive the kidney. Now, there were a few more tests to take, so again she tried not to get too excited. She woke up her sisters to tell them all the FANTASTIC news. They told me later it was like they were all little girls jumping and yelling and crying with joy.

Jeana hopped on the next flight, which was the only direct flight that day, to Salt Lake City! Bubbles and I picked her up, rushed her to the hospital to start the process. When we arrived, there were many blood tests and x-rays that had to be completed. The entire night we kept texting, emailing and FaceBooking the events with pictures so other family members and friends could be involved and updated. (her kids and husband couldn't fly down until Saturday evening!) By midnight all was a go for the operation Saturday morning at 8am.

Later, we found out they took the kidney out of the donor that night and began flushing it with fluids to get a jump start on the transplant. By 1pm on Saturday the surgery was complete, Jeana had a new kidney, and her life could begin again.

As an outsider I am thrilled and excited for her and her family. Her quality of life with increase and her energy too. But I also know that I really have no idea how miraculous this really is for her and her family. I may think about her every week or two but she had to live with this day in and day out.

After the surgery and again late last night Bubbles, Angie and I went again to visit her. As we waited in the waiting room there were other families there waiting for their loved ones who were receiving new lungs and a new heart. As we all gathered and talked together about our loved ones and how excited we are for them we also realized there is another family grieving because of their loss. It is a very unfortunate event that took place as a young healthy body builder was in a motorcycle accident (we are not exactly sure who the donor(s) is but after talking with the other families this is what we came up with) But through his passing it truly saved (at least) three other people! Wow! What a blessing to be an organ donor!

After visiting a few more times with Jeana, She looks great. She has great color, the whites of her eyes are really white, and she has peed a ton! YEAH! The incision is huge and painful, but it will only get better from here!

 Just walking into the hospital in her favorite (and lucky ) color PURPLE!! She also brought two purple bags with her!!
 This man is from Alaska and just received a kidney transplant two weeks ago!
 We're what?

 Got into her gown and reviewing medical history with a resident.
 Drawing lots, and lots of blood. Bubbles there for moral support!
 Off to X-rays...
 FINALLY she can drink as much water as she wants!
 And eat! YUMMY!
 A cute nurse putting her IV in.
 I was helping too!
 Right after surgery...Groggy and kinda out of it.
 Aww, her sweet heart is finally here!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Updates on the garden!

 My garden is coming right along nicely and I couldn't be more happy about it! We've had a ton of rain. The boys enjoy helping out in the garden too. I've had to replant the watermelon 3 times...something keeps eating that plant! UGH! Other than's beautiful!

There is corn, watermelon, pumpkins, zucchini, cherry tomatoes, large tomatoes, onions, broccoli, cauliflower, artichoke, carrots, cabbage and a herb garden! I have a ton of room in my backyard! I love it!

Deck Furniture Complete!!

 Two weeks ago we decided to make some deck furniture. I found some plans on "Knock off Wood" that Scott tweaked a bit. I didn't want a back or arm rests. This is what he came up with...BEAUTIFUL!! It didn't take long to build it and everyone helped out. Papa was in town and helped out a ton! We then stained it a dark chocolate brown. Now I need a table!

My family just doubled in size!!

 We got 8 sweet baby chicks the other day! We've wanted chickens for a while now...When trying to decide which breed the store told us they were almost out of chicks and wouldn't be getting more until March. So I called my wonderful chicken friend, Minda, and we were off to the store. I forgot the breeds we purchased, but they are all the ones Minda has. And we all love hers!
 We let them out of their box for a couple hours a day to roam the yard. They find worms and lay in the sun. Everyone has named a chicken and has their own. I had to veto about 10 names until I was okay with them. Eglantine in the small grey one in the picture above. Hawk is Jackson's (in the first photo with the Mohawk feathers on his head!)

 A brown with gold lining is Bob, Brigham chose it. The chick looks like a roadrunner or a small ostrich with his long neck.
The are 2 black and White ones. One is Smores and the other is Rascal. (We can't let him roam...He runs and hides under our deck or climbs through the gate out of the yard.) There are 2 red chicks (those are my favorite!!) and their names are Prim Rose and Katniss (From The Hunger Games)
I already have a couple friends asked to buy their eggs as soon as they start laying. Sweet!
Welcome to the family girls! Now there are more girls than boys!! :)

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Easy ideas you can do to save money!

You don't have to be a crazy couponer or spend 30 hours a week (gasp!) finding deals and clipping coupons! Here are a few little tricks that I do regularly that are easy for anyone to do.

Use the library. We get new movies, Cd's and books there all the time, for free. The first day on the month they add the new releases and we add them to our hold list. They also host several children's events during the week for free!

Barter with friends/family/neighbors. You can exchange books, food and babysitting time. Just ask, you'll be surprised on what most people will say.

Just ask. If you're at a hotel, or boarding a plane just ask if you can be bumped up. Or if there is a better rate. Can they add a continental breakfast with that? For us, 8 out of 10 times they'll do something!

Rent your vid's from Red Box with FREE codes. They come out once or twice a month. Who doesn't love a free video!?

Use E-coupons. I shop a lot at Smith's and Target. Smith's has Smith's coupons and E-coupons. Target has Target coupons. You can double up on an item with a manufacture coupon and a Smiths (or Target) coupon for additional savings. (Wal-mart price matches, which is great too!!)

Take advantage of the cheaper days at the theater. Every Monday the movies are .75 cents! A great time waster for the summer!

Zoo's, national parks and museum's offer free admission days once a month. Check on-line to see when they are in your area.

Children's camps usually offer a discount if the parent can help in coaching or clean-up. Again, check on-line.

Those a re few that I can think of off the top of my head. I hope it can help you! If you have other ideas, please share!!

Friday, June 10, 2011


Don’t forget to use Swagbucks for all your searches today because it is Mega Swagbucks Friday. You can earn more (even twice as much!) swagbucks doing normal searches today since they are giving out swagbucks in increments of 50, 100, or even 1000!

The reason I love Swagbucks? Definitely the Amazon gift cards- you can get a $5 gift card for only 450 swagbucks (but there are plenty of other prizes, so you’ll want to check it out). Not sure what Swagbucks is? Check out How to Earn Swagbucks and start winning as you search.

Search & Win

Lemonade Stand

The other day we built a cute Lemonade stand with some extra wood we had in our garage. It was fun that we all helped and did it together. After it was built, we painted it and then put some vinyl lettering on it. As so as it warms up a bit, we'll put it out and start selling! (you can't tell, but we screwed handles into each side so it's easier to transport!)
I need to paint on some lemons to the sign....

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Funny Pictures

 On my new (white) IPhone I can take some crazy pictures with this CamWow application on my camera. We have had so much fun with it!

Fun with Friends

 When I went on my mission, I had a GREAT MTC Companion! As we first met and introduced ourselves, we hit it off immediately. The funny thing was, after telling her I was from Santa Barbara she told me two of her best friends were from there. I'm thinkin'...Umm...No way. I asked who and she said Michelle and Jennica. way! Those two gals were MY best friends! She knew them from BYU and I knew them since primary. Crazy coincidence! So we all (finally) got together with our families! (And BTW, Jennica, that is MY husband you're hangin on...and Michelle, this isn't a photo soot! :) ) We have 17 kids all together! How wonderful!
We had a entertaining evening with great food! Thanks Michelle, Jennica Sister Akin (Alison) and fam's!!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Will's Graduation!!!

 WOW! What a wonderful day! And I am so glad it's over! I'm always doing 20 things at a time and hardly ever get stressed, but man the past two weeks have not been kind to me. I was in charge of the 6th grade promotion. Will's school had NEVER put on a graduation/promotion for the 6th graders...Ever. So of course I pushed for it and volunteered to do it. All. I taught the kids "lean on Me' and "You've got a Friend in Me". I made and printed the certificates (with a little help from Scott), decorated, rehearsed, made posters, ordered food and made up the programs. I had no idea how tough 6th graders are. Man oh man!

 Will had lots of family and friends in attendance. It sure is nice to have their support! Jackson's class went on a field trip to a hike and decided not to go. He would rather see Will in his special day!

WAY TO GO WILL!! I am super proud of you!