Monday, August 31, 2009

August Pictures

August was a busy month for us, both Richard and I had work training, we moved, my nephew came to visit, my best friend died and I rushed home to help plan a funeral. Through all of that we did find a few moments to have fun, here are some of the pictures. above is Stevie, myself and Sienna, and Elizabeth (Stevie's friend) at my sister Kisha's gravesite Morgan Utah. Staci, Sage and Levi inside the Eisenhower Presidential museum Abeline Kansas.

Richard with the kids outside President Eisenhower's childhood home.

Rich and I on the steps of the Eisenhower Presidential library.

Sage, Levi and Richard refolding Richards Dads memorial flag so we could put it in the display case.

Staci in an old carriage after our lunch outing one day.

balloons carried to the heavens after Becky's funeral

Becky's gravesite Brigham city Utah

Me, Stevie and Siena at my Dads gravesite, my first trip there since he died, Brigham City Utah

Old friends after the funeral, me, Dodie(I have known since 4th grade) Wendy(since 3rd grade) Marianne(since Jr High)

five generations

Sienna on Greatest Great Grandpa's bear rug

Grandma rocking the baby(Stevie's friends baby)

Stevie and Sienna with Grandpa

Home from funeral

I made it home on Saturday afternoon, it was a heartbreaking, exhausting week, so getting home was good.
We still do not know for sure what Becky died from, and most likely will not know for 4 to 8 weeks when toxicology comes back, we think it was either complications from the weight loss drug she was on, or from her sleep apnea.
It was a very had week, I got a much better feeling for her life as I played mediator between her kids and her husband, a job she always took on, there was so much miscommunication and misunderstanding going on, after the kids came to me upset I agreed to talk to Karl and from there we had a couple "family meetings" to try and get everyone's feeling out and put some unease and questions to rest. I hope now they will all be able to go on and communicate with each other and have a close family relationship.
I spent a lot of time with her Mom who of course wanted someone to vent to and to talk about Becky to.
They funeral was very nice, Kyle her 6 year old just broke my heart, he was trying so hard to be brave and comfort everyone, at one point I was standing next to the casket with my hand on Becky's and Kyle came up and put his hand on mine and said it is going to be okay, then he sat on my lap at one point and told me how his mommy had gone to Heaven to take care of his sister Kandace (she died as a baby) and how she would always be in our hearts, and would look down on us and watch over us.
I spoke at the funeral, that was hard, but I had long ago promised her I would if she went before me.
I was so proud of all the kids, they really pulled together to help each other through this difficult time, their Mom would have been proud of them.

Friday, August 21, 2009

My friend Becky

I recieved a phone call from my very best friends (since Jr High) son this morning, Becky died in her sleep sometime early this am. I am on my way home to Utah, I was in a meeting at work when I got the message so my boss has gotten me emergency tickets home.
I cannot understand how she could die at 41 or how I am supposed to stay here without her, what about our trip to Hawaii, or those phone calls when I just don't think I can make it another day and she made me smile. Then there is her 6 year old son, how will he remember his Mom when she is gone to early and the grandkids, with another one on the way. I don't know how this could happen I am just so....I don't know what.
I don't know how I can go home and bury my best friend, or how I am supposed to come back and live without her this is just not fair.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

crazy couple weeks

It has been so busy the last couple weeks, first we were moving into the new house, getting kids ready for school to start, Richard had combat training, and I am in the middle of American Eagle training. All last week was ground training on top of our shifts, so it was tons of hours, this week and next week have been ticketing/counter/computer training. The week started off with me up until 230am trying to get pre training computer classes done, back up at 5 to finish them just in time to run out the door to class (this was also the first day of school) the rest of the week has not gotten much better, there are shifts to work, 8 hours of training classes a day and 2 to 3 hours of homework once I get home. I am no longer even retaining any of the information, so i am a bit worried about the test tomorrow! The American grand opening and first flight is Monday and we still have ongoing training so should be interesting, I suppose it will be all worth it once we are trained and running smoothly.
As I said Richard was in combat training this week, one day he had to give and receive IV's, I expected him to come home all bruised but he did not look to bad. They also had simulated combat and life saving, it has been awhile since he has done this so it was an experience to say the least.
We are somewhat settled into the new house, there is still a lot to unpack and put away since neither of us have had much time, but it is coming together slowly.
Levi and Staci started school here on Monday, we had a little trouble with Levi's schedule at first but once we reminded them he has a IEP they got it fixed. Staci changed schools to one here on Post, she likes it so far and it is just at the end of the road so that is nice.
Cheyenne decided she wanted to go to school in Grand Junction (Colorado) with her Dad, she still has friends there from when they lived there so she started school there on Wed. she turned 13 on Sunday, I just don't know where time goes, seems like she should still be little! I hate that my kids are growing up so fast I wish I could figure out how to freeze time.
Anyhow that is our quick update, I am so burned out by the time I get home and get homework done I can barely get myself to look at the computer these days, but only one week left and with any luck things will get back to normal, in the meantime the overtime will be nice on payday.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Stevie's Poem

Stevie likes to write poems and awhile ago I asked her to write me one, this is what she wrote.

Always My Baby
A drop of dew so fat and plump sits upon a rosebush
I sit and stare and watch it fall daydreaming childhood memories.
A little girl so young and sweet smiling with her mommy
The bond is Strong and full of love as mommy hugs her baby
A love so pure with ties so thick it seems impossible to break
As time goes by the stronger it becomes, nothing else compairs to it
The love between a mother and a daughter
A feeling so special meant to cherish forever trust building into friendship so real,so innocent so pure.
They live happy lives as a family full of love so close in such a short time
A flash goes off inside my mind, years are speeding by
The baby is grown in a few short years different now, no longer sweet or loving instead a miserable teen
Her hateful eyes and mouthy words are directed at her mother
The words are meant to hurt/sting moms feelings they secretly break her heart into tiny pieces always to be broken or so it seems
Mommy always kept strong never letting on how really hurt she was inside
A constant fight that never ends about such small things
The words sometimes different but the fights the are wrong I am right why can't you just let me be me
You don't understand anything about my life so stop pretending you do, you are not fooling anybody our worlds are different, our lives don't belong together.
Mommy just smiles sadly as she pulls her close she whispers in her ear, believe it or not I do these things for you so you will know right from wrong
When you are on your own one day you will see how much I love and care for you, and how much I worry about you. No matter what my feelings won't change
A mothers love for her children is stronger than any metal, it knows no boundaries it is built on emotions, trust and even fights
With a small smile and a wink of her eye Mommy says now don't you ever forget no matter what your age or what size you are you'll always be my baby.
When you have a child of your own I hope you will remember all this and maybe you will understand when you are having the same fight with your on little one.
Life brings lessons and tests to shape who we become, but when life throws you a curve ball or you are caught of guard and you feel so alone don't you worry I will be there to help you through because you will always be my baby.
A hateful flash more hurtful words aimed to pain her mother, a curt matter what lies ahead in my life one thing is for certain I won't be like you I'm positively sure, you are controlling and bitter trying to live my life for me,you don't even have a life of your own, you don't understand me you never will so just stop trying to fool yourself.
She had not even a glimmer of sorrow or feeling of remorse in those cold green eyes.
Mommy gave a sad look and said if you only knew, how right you are you and your siblings are my life, it is my goal to see you accomplish your goals, I understand you more than you think.
you are insecure and scared and trying to understand the world around you.
You are young just barely a teen
She screams back when I have a child of my own they will do as the please, they will have the freedom I was never allowed.
Okay baby girl was all she said we'll see how much freedom you'll give them in a world so dangerous, so cruel so cold. You ask me to see it from your point of view just once try to see mine, put yourself in my shoes then maybe you will understand just a small portion of what I do for you.
Months go by not much changes they drift farther and farther apart.
At her wits end Mommy wants to give up, she hopes and prays and eventually there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
A teary eyed teen walks into her Mommy's room with some news.
She is filled with terror, shame crawls up her spine.
AS she crawls into the bed she takes a deep breath...Mommy I have a problem.
Tears streaming down her face she confides a secret that will change them both forever.
Mommy I am pregnant, I am alone and scared
Then she cries and cries till she finally runs out of tears.
Mom sits back breaths in deep as she tries to comfort her babies pain, tears well in her eyes but she won't let them fall as she smiles down on me.
There are no angry words or hateful looks ever directed from her to me.
She shows n disappointment or regrets she just hold me and says
Don't worry I am here for you no matter what you can't forget you will always be my baby.

At times like lately when I am worried sick about Stevie and the choices she makes I read this and hope she will come back on day, get her life back on track and remember that I cannot stop worrying about her and "just let it go" because she will always be my baby.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Battalion fun day

It is safety week at Fort Riley, and on of the activities Richards battalion had was a family "fun" day. They did some safety briefings for the soldiers and then had a cook out, some sports (baseball game, relay run etc.) it was fun. Turned out to be on one of my days off, and was a nice way for Richard to spend his work day. This is right before they fed us all, they fed A LOT of people when you add in all the soldiers and their families that were there.
Here is Richard in the batting cages, it might have been a little soon since his back surgery for him to be doing this! Luckily he seems okay today so maybe it was alright.

Here is Staci checking out the firetruck they had there, was neat she got to get inside and see how it all works

and here she is in the police car, she got to get up front as well and see all the new technology they have now, it was pretty impressive.

She got her face painted, this is once it was all done.

and here she is getting it painted.

They finally got the blow up slide pumped up and staying up, it kept deflating at the beginning of the day.

Richard throwing the balls into the anti gravity chamber, you had to try and knock down these alien heads that just floated there, he did pretty well.
Today we went back over to the old house to get ready for the packers to come in the morning, they will pack everything tomorrow and then the movers come on Monday to deliver it to us, we get to sign for our house tomorrow and I think we can take possession of it then as well, it will be nice to get all moved in and settled. Levi will be home from Utah on Saturday and Sage is coming with him, so they will be here to help me get everything put away, fun for them....

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Crittenden reunion

We were in Utah on "Saturday for the Crittenden reunion, it is always so much fun to get to see everyone, even though it ended up being a very short trip I am so glad we went, and I am very happy Richard was able to get leave (at the last minute) and go with me. This is my Great Uncle Charlie, he is my Grandpa's youngest brother, it was his families turn to "host" the reunion this year, they did a wonderful job.
Here are some of the kids playing games, they are throwing the sponge at one of my uncles, not sure who was they "lucky one" here.

This is my Great Aunt Gloria, I thought she looked very good, especially considering all of the heath challenges she has been having lately.

Here is my cousin (2nd cousin to be technical) Kristanne and her husband Shawn, and I am not for sure who else a cousin I am sure, but which one? Jason maybe?

Kris and Shawn put together a lovely slide show of past reunions, it was really neat to see previous years.

Great Aunt Martha Ann, she is my Grandpa's only sister, here she is telling us some stories about my Great Grandpa Crittenden, that was really fun to learn some new things about him.

Here is my Grandpa and his brother Carroll, not sure why this picture came up bigger than the rest.

My Grandma, it was so nice to spend some time with her.

Me, Richard, Levi and my nephew Sage

After the reunion we headed back to Gram and Grandpa's house to visit, this is Staci on the big rock in their front yard

Rich and Staci on the porch swing

Grandpa telling Rich and Staci elk hunting stories.

The rest of the pictures are in our piccassa album if you would like to see them you can access them from the link on the left of our page.

For my cousins who I know read this (Kristanne, LiliAnn and Alyson, it was so great to see everyone, you all looked great, wish we had had more time to visit)

Monday, August 3, 2009

Moms Birthday

we just returned home from our whirlwind trip to Utah, while we were there we were able to join some of the family and celebrate Moms birthday. We had a cook out at my brother Colts house Friday night, though he is not there yet, he is still in Marine recruiting school in California, his wife Heather is so sweet to always open her home for us to have family get togethers. Here is Mom with her kids that were able to make it home, Kaleb, Tyler, Clint and Me.
Getting ready for cake, that was really pie this year, kaluha pie, fresh strawberry pie and cupcakes for the kids. yummy

Here is Sera with Henry


Max playing football

Kate and Brathen playing football

someof my brothers with Richard...Clint, Ty, Kaleb, Rich

Mom with the girls Beth, Me, Trish, Heather

Me with my new nephew Henry, this was the first time I have seen him so I was very excited, he is such a happy, sweet baby.