Life in My Shoes

Life in My Shoes

Monday, February 20, 2017

Homeschool Valentine's Banquet 2017

On Valentine's evening, our homeschool group hosted our
3rd annual Valentine's Banquet.
What fun we had!!

We spent lots of time planning and preparing,
and the girls in my Advanced Foods class did so much to help!!

Our class was in charge of preparing the twice-baked potatoes... well as the cakes for the dessert table!
Each girl was required to make a beautiful cake of their choice
and use at least decorating element that we've covered in our cake decorating unit
  over the last three weeks.
These girls took us all by surprise and presented the most gorgeous creations!!

Ashlyn presented a Black Forest Cake.

I made a Chocolate Covered Strawberry Cake.

Grace made this exquisite Red Velvet cake.

These two lovely sisters did equally amazing work!

Rachel blew us away with her White Chocolate/Coffee Chocolate layer cake!

Breanne's "naked" Vanilla Strawberry-Filled cake was a stunner!

Our class also served all the guests "blue-plate" style, and we utilized
the younger girls as waitresses as well!

What a beautiful experience for each of these girls as they
worked together encouraging each other in learning new ministry
and entrepreneurial skills!!
I'm just so thankful for the opportunities the Lord has brought our way
as we continue to raise them for His glory and service!! 

Friday, February 17, 2017

Valentine's Day Recap

I love Valentine's Day.
Yes, I know the history behind it.
Yes, I'm totally aware that we can say "I love you" every other day
of the year and in a thousand different ways.
I just love all the pink, and hearts, and chocolate,
and cupcakes, and making the day full of surprises
for my children and hubby.
It's just FUN and sweet!!

First, I sent these little appreciation gifts to our teachers at our homeschool program!
They were super easy and fun to put together!

Abby made the treats from our family to her friends which was such 
a big help to Mama!

Next, because our mornings tend to be so busy and rushed,
I set this all up for lunch!

This cuteness came home with my one of my children filled with sweet tart rolls!!
So fun!!

To see our other simple Valentine celebrations, click here.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

8-year anniversary of our diagnosis

Today, we are remembering the life changing moments that we experienced 8 years ago today.

Several years ago, my husband and I were reminiscing......

"It's hard to believe that it's been 3 years," my husband said the other day.
"No it isn't," I responded.

I was thinking....of our most recent struggles with our insurance company,
and how my conversations with those people has stressed me to the point of tears.

Or.....of those midnights when she has been sitting in front of the toilet with her stomach just burning with
pain and nausea from a mixture of a stomach virus and high ketones.
With tears pouring down her face, she whimpers "Why do I have to have diabetes?"

It was like we were handed a newborn again......only with no warning.
No preparations.
Nothing to care for this newborn.
Having to learn how to train ourselves to take things with us when we leave the house, scheduled meals, routine doctor visits, nightime feedings, mental exhaustion.

Or.....of how far we've come from those early weeks of having to stick with a set amount of carbs for every. single. meal so we could learn how to wrap our brains around counting the carbs for each food she's eating and drawing up the insulin into a syringe {making sure we have all the supplies with us if we're away from home}
and writing down each and every blood sugar number on a chart.
And here we are with insulin-to-carb ratios and a little more freedom with insulin pens.

But yet, we still have a long way to go.
Her numbers are still wacky.
Her A1c is not where it should be.
And that is constantly gnawing away in the back of my mind.

8 years ago we walked into our pediatrician's office not knowing why she had these horrible,
sporadic headaches that were relieved with one bout of vomiting.

I should have known for sure by just looking at how emaciated she was.....

but that had come on so quick we hadn't really noticed.
This picture was taken 3 weeks and 3 days from her diagnosis.

There were other obvious signs going on that did finally prompt me to get her in to the doctor, but if I had known at the time what a crisis her body was in I would've just rushed her to the ER.

But thankfully, our loving Heavenly Father had this all planned out.
He knew when she was born that this day was coming.
Would we change things if we had that option within our power?
I don't know that we would.
It is really hard some days.
But we know that we are being prepared for something right now.
We don't know what that is.....but it's an assignment.
A mission.
And right now, we're in boot camp.
We are so thankful for what we're learning about how to minister to those families who are in crises.
Maybe at a deeper level than others who've never had a medically fragile child.
Or maybe we'll meet some more folks along the way who, like us,
have a child with Type 1 Diabetes that we can be a blessing to and vice versa!

The journey has been difficult....I'll not lie.
But it is made sweeter because we must be on our knees...every day in conversation with our Lord.
Our eyes ever on Him, lest we like Peter who was walking on water toward Jesus, lose our focus and begin to sink in fright because of the storm swirling around us.

5 years ago celebrating Aryn's 4th birthday!!

She's almost 17 now.
Puberty was hard on her body.
The surge of hormones and growth and external life changes kinda piled up on her.
She spent a lot of time retreating from all of it.
Not really wanting to meet things head on.

So her A1C was dangerously high for months.
No matter how much insulin we gave her.
It made me crazy some days.
So much so that her endocrinologist wanted us to spend time with the pediatric psychologist for a couple months.
She was even given a fish or two by the clinic there as an experiment to see if caring for a small pet encouraged better diabetic management.
It was only when the idea of her starting driver's education came up that she had a new found motivation.
She owns this now.
We bought her a FitBit two Christmasas ago which she loves.
She is medicating properly and thinking about healthy eating and proportions.
Her A1C at our last check-up was down to 8%!
We're working to get it down even more.

And now, she has plans.
This girl wants to go on her very first mission trip this summer. 
(UPDATE:  Which she did.  To New York City!  And she rocked it!!!)
I still feel that I need to go along with her just to make sure she's on top of the activity and diet changes, but this is something she came to us about!!
She wants to go again in the summer of 2017 and is asking about going on an international trip as well (GULP!!!)
She is a junior in high school this year, and working very hard toward graduation in the spring of 2018!  She also started working part-time at our local Sonic late last summer as well!

God has plans for this girl.
And we don't want anything to stand in her way of accomplishing what she feels God has called her to!!

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Winter/Spring Semester: Advanced Foods Class

Last semester, I taught a Textiles and Clothing Construction Class
as the first part of this year's Family and Consumer Science Course.
You can see some of our projects here.

This semester, my students really wanted to continue into our
exploration of cooking and baking, so I'm teaching an
Advanced Foods Class.
Last year we journeyed through Beginning Foods and Nutrition,
so this year we're diving deeper into that subject.
One of the first units we are doing is a beginning cake decorating course.
We are using the Wilton Beginning Cake Decorating Course 1
instruction book and kit as our guide!

What fun we are having!!

Next week, I have a guest teacher coming in to give my girls some of her
best tips for cake decorating as well as sharing her experience as
an entrepreneur.
She's a 16-year old homeschooler who has her own home business
and does cakes for weddings and other special events!
I'm also excited for our final project as each of my girls will be 
baking and decorating a cake for this church's Valentines Banquet
and it will be displayed on a very special dessert table!!
Such fun times!!

Friday, January 27, 2017

Volleyball Champions

My middle girls love to play volleyball!!
Three years ago, when we first started participating in a local homeschool group,
they were given the chance to be a part of a volleyball team.
For three years they have traveled two hours away for 
an annual all-day volleyball tournament,
and for two of those years they have taken second place overall.

Well, not this year!!!!

This year, this hard-working team played their hearts out 
and were determined to come home in first place,
and THEY DID!!

First Place!!

These girls just ooze determination, good sportsmanship, kindness,
and a love of the game!
What a great opportunity for my daughters to learn the principle of not giving up,
 it takes time to build a team, encouraging each other,
and courageous teamwork!!!