Wednesday, April 19, 2017

My post on The Well website

Hey y'all!

It has been a busy, fun and exhausting year of learning and growing over here. I wanted to share a blog post I did for our church earlier this year.

I hope to post more as the days and weeks roll towards summer.

[check the link below]

here are a couple of random pictures, because pictures make everything better ;)

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

It's been a long long time...

It has been quite some time since my last post. Maybe because we had a crazy few months (Jan-Aug) with birthdays, sickness, chest x-rays (Aunna), potty-training (both littles), new prosthetics (Ty), Juice Plus conference (Erin), hand surgery (Ty), ending our homeschool year (3 bigs), buying and selling our house, going on vacation, starting the new adventure of 3 in school, starting another homeschool year with the big girls and completing one full year of reGen (Dave)'s tiring just typing all of that out. And then the regular 3-6 trips to Shriner's in there somewhere.

For me things need to be quick, easy to access and 1-2 steps to fit into my life. The blog just isn't that. Instagram on the other hand is so simple and quick (which also links to fb) which is why there is even one picture on fb.

Our kids and grown so much over this year. So may pictures and milestones to be shared (mostly documented on IG. See our pages for timely updates @erinmichelleo (family page) and @color_and_spice (creative page).

I'm not sure if there will be more posts here because rankly I would rather spend my time with my family, my planner and my Bible.

With that here is possibly one last post:

Two years ago tomorrow we met our Aunna Hope for the first time. She screamed and cried and was scared for another transition as an orphan. Well that all changed that day and we will never be the same!

She is a delight.
She is strong.
She is determined.
She is sweet.
She is fiery.
She is funny. 
She is an OVERCOMER!

{a few pictures of our last few months}

Lightning Baby in her preschool class

mama and LH

Obwald girls in Newport

Obwald party of 7 - 4th of July

Obwald kids on the 1st day of school 2016

TyTy and mama 

big girls enjoying a fun car

littles in the "picture spot" at school

married 17 years...

love to you all!

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Busy Busy over here

Since I posted last a few months have flown by. We have traveled to Shriners two times this year already. Our little man had his first (Jan 8th) and second trip (Feb 11th) where he was fitted for a lower leg/foot prosthetic. We are awaiting its arrival in the mail any day now. Here are a few pictures from those trips.

January 8, 2016

Our Lightning Hope was also fit for "new feet" and a hand attachment for her bike.

I love to take "we're here" picture when we get to Shriners and remember who traveled with us. It was Fashion Faith's turn.

Waiting in the room playing Old Fart Booth on daddy's phone. It's pretty fun seeing these little ones as a 90 year old. hahaha Passes the time.

One of my favorite things of this whole process is seeing their X-rays!
 Aftetr seeing these hand X-rays we confirmed hand surgery for Ty. They will separate the three
right-most fingers on his right hand.

This lower X-ray let us know that his hips and knees were in good shape and that surgery would not be necessary to fit him with a lower leg prosthetic. Hooray!

After being there for about 3 hours they brought in toys for each of our kids. Another AMAZING thing about Shriners. They were so kind to notice that our peeps were fading and needed some entertainment.

Ty checking out the sock that goes under the plaster to make his form. I thought he would freak out much more than he did. I think he only cried once.

Now that LH has had a few casts made for "new feet" she is a pro. She loves it and sits very still.

We try to find fun lunch spots on our one-day trips to Sac. We have scored a few Diners, Drive-ins and Dive spots. This was a fun place with lots of variety.

Pretty much the largest onion rings we have ever seen!

February 11, 2016

And we're off again...

Ty practicing "standing tall" waiting for his fitting.

Oh, that was a bit scary! After he freaked out (and cried/screamed for about 10 minutes) we asked if we could put on the prosthetic next time they brought it in. The prosthetist was so gracious and passed it to us and then left the room for a few minutes while we go it on. The prosthetist peeked into the room several time sot see if it fit well. 

Ty was a little more accepting the second time. We forgot to take a video so we asked if he could try it one more time. The third time was a charm because he then didn't want to take it off and ventured outside the ramp with the handrails and even let go altogether! What a guy! So BRAVE!

Ty has to have one other small surgery at the same time as his hand surgery. We met with one of the pediatric surgeons on that trip. He was very nice as well. Ty warmed right up to him. He's so friendly! It's definitely one of Ty's gifts, being friendly!

Next trip will be Ty's surgery...

Sunday, January 10, 2016

December 2015 recap

What a fun and packed Christmas season we had. Ty totally hung in there with all of our festivities. He is such a social guy and loves to play at new places with whatever toys are available.

We started out the holiday season with our two big girls participating in The Nutcracker (excerpts). They shined and loved every minute of it. We are so thankful for the staff and volunteers at BTB!

All of the grandparents were able to come but we didn't get a photo of them. Grandpa is always ready for a quick pic.

The dance director and their teacher.
She's just the sweetest and a beautiful dancer (who just had a baby. Amazing!)

Our friends from LG even came to watch. LH really wanted to join in the photo session. Funny girl.

This is the end of the Waltz of the Flowers that both of our big girls were in. It's tricky to get a video and a picture with a 2 year old bouncing on and off of your lap. Such is life. :)

I took the kids to Baskin Robbins in December as a "THANK YOU". The big kids have done such an amazing job helping us transition with another China baby. :) The don't complain when I ask them for endless "Helps". What a joy to share this journey with our big kids. Their lives are forever changed as well by adding these two darlings to our family.

It has been interesting learning Ty. There are times when he just seems to want to tune out. I'm sure he;s not used to this much personal interaction. I am navigating the times of letting him lay alone, sucking his thumb and when to pull him back into interactions. In the picture below I pulled him back into interaction with coloring with the Color Wonder pens and paper. (Love this invention by the way! No marks on anything but the correct paper. SCORE!)

Fashion Faith did a lot of baking in December. All by herself. What a blessing. Most of this was done before I even woke up (they dad was awake). 

Our oldest just loves his littles! It is so special to see this big kid, a boy, loving on such small people.

Homeschooling with these littles sometimes looks like this. Ty just went over and plopped down on his big sis.

Here is FF with her finished Angel-food cake. She was so excited to make it for our ladies Life Group party. We did a sock exchange. So fun! These lades and their daughters are so special to us!

  new socks

These two...all on their own got their babies and started feeding them on the couch. Out of the two couches we have (they are on the biggest one) they sat right next to each other. So funny.

A dear friend of our family, Eddie, came for a visit in December. It was his first time meeting our new guy. Ty just walked right over and gave him the biggest hug...with a big smile of course.

Daddy time :)

Our usual Discovery December with homeschool.

It is quite a thing learning to love a person who was a complete stranger just a bit ago. It is a challenging process but well worth it!

Getting English words into our kids in general is a process and sometimes difficult. With English-as-a -second-language is new for us. With bringing home a 16 month old it was pretty simple and similar to raising a bio kid. At least with Lightning Hope she picked it up quickly. But with a 4 year old, sheesh, very different...and takes way longer. Although we have the blessing of our new guy understanding all of what I say, the "him speaking back to us with English worlds" takes much longer...of course. I'm sure I wouldn't be able to respond in Mandarin as well as he is responding in English. Patience, learning patience once again.

Obwald Christmas 2015
One Christmas Eve we started the tradition years ago that the kids open their gifts to each other.

Christmas morning stockings! Obwald-party-of-7

First stocking!

Littlest one :)

Christmas at the Obwald's

these two...

Christmas at the Jones' (birthday buddies pic, LH and Grammie, 80 years apart)

Christmas at the Coit's (a sing along this year, so fun!)

Will and his fiancé Sarah :)

cousins on the stairs

His first sit on the goat :)

LH remembered from last year

Older dousing teaching younger cousin about the yo-yo :)

Christmas with Grandpa


JJ got the best news about her foot/ankle injury in Dec! Instead of getting back to regular activity in July 2016 she is released in Feb 2016! She has been patient, a hard worker with her exercise and a great participant at BTB even though she was limited.

The four of us were able to get away for an afternoon to serve at our local Children's Hospital, helping families shop right there in the hospital for their kids who are patients and their other kids. What a gift to help them in this very difficult and stressful time.

My favorite experience was when when I was helping a mother shop in the store for her two girls (8 and 10, the same age as my two older girls). We are given a list of what they can choose from. They get 1-2 toys, a book, socks, blanket, game...We were looking through the books to find one they might be interested in. I spotted an American Girl story book and mentioned it to her. (The children are not with them just the parents are allowed to come in.) Her response, "Oh they love American Girl!" I has noticed earlier in the afternoon that there were American Girl dolls to the side that they could choose from as their toy. Real American Girl dolls, new and in their boxes! And there different three different ones to choose from! I mentioned this to her. She said,"Can I choose that?" I said,"Yes! One for each girl?" Her eyes teared up, "Really?, and we headed over to look at the dolls. We picked one for each of her girls. She looked at me, now nearly crying saying with a low voice,"You have no idea." And of course I was on the edge of losing it myself. What a privilege to assist her in shopping for her girls and blessing them this past Christmas! 

**All of the toys, books, games, clothing and blankets are donated to the hospital and given to the families for free. The families who qualify for this program are likely to not be able to give there children any gifts at all...and on top of it they are in the hospital over the Christmas season.

We finished off the month with a visit from one of my best friends! What a treat!