Monday, March 29, 2010

Crazy of Crazies

So let me just try to sum up just this last week...

Besides not taking pictures these last few months, I have had a lot on my plate and have felt less motivated than usual to really keep up with life. Hence my absence from all things not immediately needing my attention (read: blog).

So, to sum up: SO MANY things forgotten, SO MANY things left behind, SO MANY flaky moments, SO MANY sub-par results and overall inadequacy as a wife, mother, friend, and sister. Is this what four kids does to someone like me? I've (sadly) gotten to the point where when people come over to my house (unannounced, or less than 48 hours notice), I don't even apologize for the mess they see. I have swallowed that bitter pill of pride and said YES! This is how we live - chaos is our norm!

Just one example of my life that is chaos: the family moved in at the end of November, right before T-giving. I had a mental account of what and where various items were in boxes or around the house. Since then, too much has happened and I've since forgotten MANY things. We have two cars (no worries, we haven't lost those yet!) with two sets of keys for each. I have successfully lost one set for each car since moving. I have also, on many occasions, lost the second set; but by some miracle, it has always been found in a short amount of time and we are able to get around town. Well, our lucky streak ended on Wednesday night. Dave and I had a date (a hospital schmoozing gig) and we had most of our ducks in a row with a babysitter lined up, kids fed, house somewhat in order, etc. Once I arrived with the babysitter, we were to be on our way, but needed to take separate cars because Dave was on call and needed to go straight to the hospital for a surgery later that night. And I COULDN'T FIND MY KEYS. We looked for over an hour to no avail. We gave up the date because there no longer was time enough to go out before Dave's surgery and now we only had one functioning car, so I had to use it to take back the 'sitter before Dave left on his way. I was so MAD at myself. Asking questions like, "why am I SO LAME??" And, "what has happened to me that I've fallen this far???" I was really feeling beaten down.

I called a locksmith and asked them what my options were. I was told that these newer cars have computer chips that need to be coded to the car for them to start the engine and the recoding is a pricey service. Just the key was going to run somewhere in the $275 range. And the lock/unlock button key? Another $800 or so. This is after the drama of leaving Dave's car in the shop all day Monday and Tuesday to get his front brakes entirely redone (over $2K). Needless to say that I was not loving the idea. The boys and I prayed with humble hearts that night and we hoped for a good outcome, but none came. I looked EVERYWHERE - in, around, and under the messes. NOTHING. Dave came home late to me curled up on the couch in a fetal position, basically cowering at what life was throwing my way. Dave and I discussed our trip to the Bay Area to see Uncle Pete and decided right then that with all this craziness, it was probably in our best interest to forgo the road trip (since we really didn't have a car to do so anyway!). Also, Haefan had been feverish the few days prior and his cough was becoming more aggressive. We thought it one of many signs that now was not the time to see new baby Tommy. We prayed about it and felt much better with that decision. I was still so bummed and uneasy about the keys, but felt a huge weight lifted for not having to plan a road trip solo (Dave was leaving for San Jose on Thursday afternoon for a conference, so I was in charge of all packing, planning, and driving to the Bay).

Thursday morning I didn't want to get out of bed. I still felt horrible about how I have come to this shameful place in my life. SO disorganized. So overwhelmed. Dave got the kids ready for school while I took care of Haefan when lo and behold, J.J. walked in with my van keys! Right away I asked WHERE IN THE @$&% (no real expletives used!) DID YOU GET THOSE???? J.J. simply said that Daddy gave them to him. The story is that even though Dave and I looked everywhere, when Dave looked in some of the more obvious places that morning again, he found them. Hmmmm...I'm thinking this was the only way that we would have followed the Spirit in not going to the Bay Area. I'm not laughing, but isn't it funny how the Lord works?

I was just so grateful to have those keys back! I could live my normal life again. I'm not quite to the point of getting my rear in gear with organization, but my level of gratitude for many little things in life has skyrocketed north!

That day I knew Dave would be gone in the evening (yet again because of the two previous nights on call), so I really started to feel uneasy about Haefan's cough. I decided after picking Kaelan up from school that since we were going to be driving right by the peds office (and I didn't have their phone# on my cell), and that my handy-dandy peds on call (my brother and his wife, the pediatricians) were out of the country, I would just stop by and see if we could sneak in a visit. I should mention that our pediatrician here is AWESOME and also Dave's business partner's wife (and a member of our church!). We were lucky enough to be seen almost immediately (things don't even happen that quick when we have an early morning appt!) and the doc said that Haefan needed antibiotics for the puss in his ears (ear infections) and the possible beginnings of pneumonia he could be experiencing (his breathing deteriorated very quickly that day). They gave him a breathing treatment, gave me some prescriptions and then we were on our way. The poor kid couldn't breathe through his nose with all the snot nor through his mouth because of his chest congestion. He was miserable! And, of course, this could only be happening when Dave leaves town. I know running away doesn't solve anything; but it sure sounds like a good idea sometimes.

Things are better now. Haefan is still working his way through his illness. I'm still suffering from low self-worth. But I can see the light at the end of this proverbial tunnel.

Thankfully, Kaelan's celebration day for his birthday on Saturday was a success with wonderful weather and fun had by all. Even Fozzie got some love because he was dropped off at a doggy daycare for a fun day and a haircut! I'll post pics of him soon - but be warned that he looks silly, and almost downright weird. I don't think we'll be going back to that groomer :) The only drama that day was that it was so dang bright, I ended up with a mild migraine in the afternoon - even with wearing high-quality sunglasses.

Also, I FINALLY figured out how to mass-transfer pics from my Blackberry to the computer; so, although the pictures here aren't recent, they are new (unless you Facebook, then maybe they are not all not-so-new)!!!

I know that a lot that I mentioned doesn't make me come off as all-to-happy. So I wanted to end this by bearing my testimony of the faith and love I have in the Gospel of Jesus Christ and all of its teachings. I really feel that all things thrown our way (good or bad) are for our growth and experience, to teach ourselves, others, and most especially, our children how our Heavenly Father loves each and every one of us; and how His blessings are miracles in our lives. My experiences this week were just a snapshot of the many things that have been going on in my family's life; and what I've discovered is that when things are good, I feel good and am thankful for the blessings I have from those good things. On the other hand, when things are trying and/or difficult, I notice the blessings of the most simple and uncomplicated things around me - and I am STILL grateful for the many blessings I have. For instance, I couldn't have been blessed with a better family (extended and all!) and a better station in life (maybe I would like it a bit better if I were on vacation, heh heh). I am SO very lucky to know the fullness of the Gospel and have grown so much from it. I hope that if anything, you know that I have a firm testimony (that still needs some growing - or I wouldn't have trials, right?) of Christ and his sacrifice for me.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Happy Birthday Kaelan!!!!

To my wonderful now 5-year old:

I love you with all of my heart. You have been a WONDERFUL addition to our little family. Your humor is undeniable, your laughter - contagious. You are always observing and quietly taking it all in. Sometimes you find it comforting to be in your big-brother's shadow; but I can see your confidence blooming since moving to California and you are becoming the shining star I know you are.

You are incredibly coordinated (sometimes to the point of making big-brother self-conscious). You can whack a tennis ball like no one else; can kick a karate kick with super-power speed; navigate around a hyper puppy with such deftness; and you have such aerial awareness on the trampoline (I like to think that you got that from me).

Sometimes your observant nature invokes your curiosity and I find you in a troublesome mess. Of all the boys, your personality is the most like mine. Because of that, I find it harder to be patient and understanding when you need my help. You are so patient with me and so giving. You have taught me how to be a better "me" by allowing me to see my mistakes. I hope that we have many, many years together to grow and play together. You make each day brighter than the last!

Oh, and p.s.:
Happy Birthday Dito!!!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


So, I thought I would update you on our upcoming runs. The idea being that the more people that you tell the more responsbility you have. Less reason to back out. Kind of like the wishy washy off and on engaged couple that finally send out the wedding invitations. No way to back out without alot of explaining. So, here we go....

Griselda is going to be doing an 8 mile run. It is a trail run on a very famous trail called the western states trail. It is home to the western states 100 mile race that takes place every year. So, Griselda runs four miles out and four miles back. Out is down hill with some scattered flats. Back is the exact oposite. Anyone who lives near Auburn, California who wants to keep her company it is beautiful scenery right above and eventually across the american river. Plus there hasn't even been a mountain lion attack in that area that resulted in a death for at least 8 years......The website for the runs is and the run is June 5th listed as the Aburn trail 50 km run.

Now that comes to my side of the trail. I am signed up for the 50km run that translates into 31 miles for my conversion troubled little brothers. Unfortunately, the fact that it is a trail run makes it tough to get the mileage quite right so it will actually end up being 34 miles. I ran part of it yesterday and only saw one snake and a very very persistent vulture. It will be my first race longer than a 5km. Should be fun. Ditto for the invite for company while running. Already had a friend have to bail on me due to work and family things.

So, the cat is out of the bag. No more pre-race secrecy. Only raw nipples, big blisters, and hot sierra nevada June California sun. Should be a blast. All are welcome.


Thursday, March 11, 2010

Dave's Take

Ok. So it has been a long time since I or my wife really posted. Time flies when you are having fun I guess. With the new house, new job, new schools, and new dog, you start to forget where all your free time goes. Anyway, here it goes. Quick and dirty like a mud covered puppy.

Fozzie Bear.

Our newest addition. He walks all by himself. Poops in the yard. Creates havoc with the boys. The boy's newest whipping post. For some reason he brings out the bully in all our boys. Of course he has a passive aggressive side. One minute he is being thumped on by JJ, the next minute he is making JJ "his new girlfriend" as we call. The boys love him. Mama loves him. Daddy loves him. The big dogs at the dog park love him as well. They think that he is a fast moving squeaky toy because he makes this high pitch squeal when he is having fun. I guess like our boys, our dog occasionally screams like a girl.


Walks. Walks. And walks some more. Always happy. Clingy. Loves to hang on to Mama.


Smart. Knows his colors. Knows his letters. Knows his numbers. Sometimes. He will sit there and read a word letter by letter one day, and then the next he couldn't tell you a single number. Talk about one second being a genius the next being a two year old. He loves sword play on the Wii sports resort. Griselda and him are always talking wii talk which probably sounds a little weird to most people. It involves a lot of hand hitting motion, saying "I will bam bam bam bam you. And then you will fall in the water." This kind of trash talking occurs all day. Sometimes through open car windows as we drive down the freeway. Pretty sad when your mama is talking trash to a 2 year old like that. Griselda has really lost it.


Also smart. Griselda likes to say it is because they thrive in the Montessori. I think our kids are just smart period. But Griselda likes to spend the big bucks to prove it. Not that I am resentful or anything.......Anyway. He is still our crabby old man. Also loves sword play. Has this rapid hitting hand motion that is pretty hard to beat. Definitely the best sword play kid in the family. Started karate about one month ago. Some days he loves it, other days not so much. Likes the idea of learning how to kick his brother's "bunda" as we say in the Skeehan house.


Reading really well. A good student who always does his homework. Sometimes he gets creative as to where he leaves it which always makes for a fun Friday morning treasure hunt. Griselda and I love those. It normally causes a lot of screaming, yelling, cursing, and carrying on like a bunch of pirates. Luckily we haven't made him walk the plank yet.....Arggggg!!!! Really, really, really likes karate. Talk about intense. Brings out the perfectionist in him.


Went snowboarding for the first time in 8 years in a real half pipe. Swamped with the new house, trying to figure out the finances, clipping coupons, trying to arrange for schools for next year, and most importantly, trying to have fun at the same time. She has a bunch of friends getting married this year. So, she is dying to schedule family trips to Carmel and Portugal to name a few. Hoping to take advantage of the Grandparents coming back from Australia this summer with the Portugal trip. We will see. I signed her up for another run this June. She is starting with an 8 mile trail run. She is definitely not as nervous about it as she was about her half marathon. Hopefully the car makes it to the race this time.


Working at my new job as a general surgeon. Loving my free time. Doing a lot of trail running up here. A lot means 1-2 times per week. Compared to Michigan that is a HUGE improvement. Still trying to figure out the whole family budget thing. Tougher than I thought. Trying to knock down the debt while still having fun. Love being back in California. Wouldn't leave now for anything. Also doing a run in June. Going to be a doozy. Was going to run with a friend but he had to bail on me so now running solo.

Hopefully we will post some pics soon. Just trying to appease the masses with a quick post. Congratulations to all the engaged couples, those with new babies, and hopefully those aren't the same people if you know what I mean.