Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Faith's Thankful List 2018

In the past when Faith and I have done her annual Thankful List, I would write down the items as she told them to me. This year, I thought it would be fun for Faith to be sitting right next to me so I could show her how to do a blog post.

So here we are again giving Thanks to the Lord for His abundant blessings, which is the whole point of Thanksgiving!

One reason I like this tradition so well is because since Faith has a feeding tube, it's hard for her to get excited about turkey and all other other food that accompanies this special day.

This year, Faith says she is especially THANKFUL for the following people and things in her life:

Good Friends 

Faith has made some wonderful friends at a faith-based homeschooling group she attends once a week called Inspire. 

This year, she invited the girls from her class to the park for her birthday. (It was near miraculous that we had a 60-degree day with no wind at the end of October!) She had such a wonderful time. As her parents, Rob and I are beyond grateful she has found some other kids to connect with and who love and appreciate her. There are 2 girls in particular who have become very special to her and she enjoys hanging out with them.

Faith having fun with her friends on her birthday.
 Her New Pet 

For her birthday this year, Faith got a Betta fish that she named Raymond. He really is a good pet as she says good morning to him when she comes into the living room for breakfast, feeds him whenever she is getting a feeding, and says good night to him after she has read her good night story and is ready for bed. Raymond has even made a bubble nest in his fish bowl, which is a sign that he is happy and healthy. Even though he is just a fish, Raymond has already become very dear to us. 

Raymond and the bubble nest he made in his bowl
Wheel of Fortune 

This show continues to be one of Faith's all-time favorite things to watch. She has probably been watching it faithfully for years. Besides watching it, she loves playing  it on the PlayStation. One thing that is really fun for her is making her own players, based on people she knows in real life. Her goal is always to win the million dollars, which we have managed to do a handful of times. Here is a photo I took of some characters that we made, which included her Uncle Brock, herself and her dad.

Faith loves making her own characters on the Play Station 2 version of WOF
Doing School at Home 

One of the toughest parts Faith had with going to school is battling her startle reflex all day long, coming home completely exhausted, and then having to do it all over again the next day. Even though I was hesitant about homeschooling, I know this was the right decision for her and us as a family.
One thing I love about it is that on nice days we can get her outside and take mini field trips, which is a great way for her to learn and get some fresh air. One of her new hobbies is collecting rocks, so it's fun to look for those with her. Homeschooling has its advantages in the winter, too so that she doesn't have to go outside in the frigid air, which is never fun in North Dakota.

Faith learning about trees out by her uncle's property on a nice fall day
Her Dad 

Faith loves her Dad and I'm so grateful for the special and wonderful relationship that they have. Faith especially enjoys it when her Dad reads her stories and is always making up silly songs and dances to make her laugh. She likes that he takes good care of her and always prays with her, for her, and over her.

Faith's dad in one of his favorite spots celebrating Father's Day at Tim Hortons in Grand Forks

People in our Building - Faith has made some special friends with some of our neighbors (and their family members) in our building and she enjoys getting together with them on a regular basis, including once a month for a potluck and playing games.

Her Grandparents - Faith is blessed to have all four of her Grandparents in her life. Even though we don't see her Canadian grandparents nearly enough, they are only a phone call away! She also enjoys house sitting for her other grandparents and seeing them whenever she can.

Barnes & Noble - this has become one of Faith's favorite places to shop and hang out.

Our Van - Even though it has racked up the miles since getting it in 2011 and the ramp doesn't work as well as it used to, Faith is thankful for a way to get around town!

Doing activities with her mom - As I mentioned earlier, one of Faith's new hobbies is collecting rocks. For her birthday, she received a rock art kit so that she can paint and decorate her own rocks. I love finding these kinds of activities and enjoy doing them with her!
Rob and I are very grateful that despite some of the challenges she has faced this past year, Faith is always ready to provide encouragement to those around her. We are truly blessed!

Saturday, September 8, 2018

Summer Highlights

Summer. It sure doesn't last long in North Dakota. And since Faith started school earlier this week, I figured it was a great day to reminisce about the summer we had. In June we took a trip to Fargo and somehow ended up at Tim Horton's in Grand Forks. Faith and I figured it was a great way to celebrate Father's Day a little bit early!

While my brother and his wife were away for a couple of weeks, we went out to their place to check on their dogs for them. Faith loved her new role as dog sitter. She especially enjoyed reading Clifford the Big Red Dog books to them. Besides dog sitting, Faith also enjoyed house sitting her grandparents' house while they were on vacation.

Unfortunately, Faith wasn't feeling the best over the 4th of July so we didn't make it to the parade this year, or any other fun festivities, although she did get to see the fireworks from our parking lot in our building. Later in the week, we made it up to Grandma and Grandpa's so she could see her cousins from Nebraska and South Dakota.

During the summer, Faith was able to get together with a few of her friends from the homeschooling group we go to called Inspire. She loves going to the park with them and having them push her chair around the playground. One day, the weather was even perfect for kite flying. During another adventure, she was able to see her friends perform in a play called "The Girl with the Golden Locks" put on by the Shade Tree Players.

In July I went on the Lewis and Clark Riverboat Cruise to help my Aunt Sharon celebrate her 70th birthday. Then in August, my college roomies came to town for their annual teacher's conference. We always have so much fun catching up with one another!

Between the heat, humidity, and smoke from the wildfires out west, we didn't spend as much time outdoors as we usually do during the summer. Plus, Faith came down with a pretty bad cold in August, which we all three ended up getting.

We did manage to have one last hurrah at my parents' for another family get together. Not only did Faith get to see all of her "big cousins" but her baby cousins, too. Faith even got to see her grandpa's impressive rock collection that he put around their house.

If he ever tried to be cool you might say Daddy rocks, but he definitely brings rocks home from work. Faith started her own rock collection earlier this summer when helping Daddy by the gate on the west side.

We started school the day after Labor Day, which isn't typical in North Dakota but it is kind of nice as the holiday feels like it brings summer to a close. Faith is super excited to see her Inspire friends in less than a month and is already starting to count down the days.

I hope everyone had a great summer! 
We can't wait for fall and all the fun and cooler temperatures that it brings!