Monday, November 30, 2009

The Sights of San Juan Island

We spent Thanksgiving weekend up at my Aunt and Uncle's house on San Juan Island.

It was a relaxing weekend of hot-tubbing, shopping, movie watching, eating, and napping.


My Aunt & Uncle's house

Sights around the island

Sights around Roche Harbor

Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend
filled with family and friends.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

To Grandma's House We Go

While my kids were in Music yesterday, I visited my teaching partner's classroom to chat with her kids.

One of her students came up to me and said, "I'm going to my Grandma's house for Thanksgiving!"

And because I'm a smart aleck, I said, "Oh, is it over the river and through the woods?"

Without getting my joke at all ... her sternly looked at me and said, "No, it's over the lake, on the road, through the woods, and down a gravel driveway."

Love that kid.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thankgiving

We are heading up to my Aunt & Uncle's cabin on San Juan Island
for the Thanksgiving weekend.

It will be quiet, relaxing, and perfect.

My dad, mom, Jay, Danny, and my NEW sister-in-law Erica.

Feeling thankful this year for our health.

Looking forward to some good news and happier times for our family.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

James MacMillan Piper

James MacMillan Piper
March 9, 1923 - November 18, 2009

Grandpa's obituary:

James MacMillan Piper passed away on November 18, 2009 with his family by his side.

Jim was born in Spokane, WA on March 9, 1923. He moved to Seattle and finished his senior year on Broadway High School. During his senior year, he got a job at Swedish Hospital, where he ran the elevator. Since he needed a place to live, he slept in the mattress room at the hospital.

He was a soldier in the 84th Infantry and served our country in WWII and fought in the Battle of the Bulge. Upon his return from the war, Jim attended the University of Washington, where he met his first wife, Jackie Elliott. Jim graduated with a degree in Zoology and was a member of the Psi Upsilon Fraternity.

After college, Jim worked for various companies in the transportation and equipment industries. He quickly developed relationships with the major railroads by salvaging cargo from rail derailments, which then led him to found MacMillan-Piper in 1969. Under his leadership, he built MacMillan-Piper into the largest transloader and container freight station in the Pacific Northwest. Today, MacMillan-Piper is recognized nationally and internationally as a leader in global trade.

On his daily trips to work from Bainbridge to Seattle, Jim noticed the homeless that were present on the Seattle streets. He took note of them in the mornings on his way to work and again on his way home in the evenings and he knew he wanted to help. He got support from Grace Episcopal Church on Bainbridge, and Jim and a small group began handing out sack lunches to the homeless. His efforts grew into donations of clothing and blankets and hot dinners. People outside the church began to help as well. The program "Streets of Seattle" continues today with many people lending a hand from the Seattle area.

Jim and his wife Zona, made their home on Bainbridge Island, as well as their most recent residence at Aljoya on Mercer Island. Together, Jim and Zona were founding members of Grace Episcopal Church on Bainbridge Island. Over the years, Jim made many lasting friendships playing golf at Wing Point Golf and Country Club on Bainbridge. Jim and his family were enthusiastic skiers, and Jim had many happy memories of skiing up at Stevens Pass.

Jim was a man of many gifts. It gave him great pleasure to quietly do things for others. He made friends easily with people of all ages, and his choice to treat all people with dignity and respect brought out the best in everyone he met. He had a terrific sense of humor. He not only enjoyed telling jokes, but he had perfected the fine art of "pulling your leg." His love and appreciation for music led him to take violin lessons as a boy, and in his late 60's he took mandolin lessons.

Jim passed away hearing the voices of his family as they joined together at his bedside to sing his favorite song, "Edelweiss."

He is survived by his loving wife of 38 years, Zona, and their children: son Jim Piper and wife Suzie, daughter Mary and husband Steve Diederichs, daughter Sue and husband Dave Lindsey, daughter Janet and husband Tim Jorve, son J.T. Kearney and wife Tamme Bosler, son Jack Piper and wife Jinks, and daughter Patty and husband Steve Stivala.

Along with his 7 children, and his many years running MacMillan-Piper, Jim was most proud of his 14 grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held at Grace Episcopal Church on Bainbridge Island, Saturday, December 5th at 2:00 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: Bainbridge Island Fire Dept., 9985 Madison Ave. NE Bainbridge Island, WA 98110, or Grace Episcopal Church, 8595 NE Day Road Bainbridge Island, WA 98110; or Operations Nightwatcch. P.O. Box 21181, Seattle, WA 98111.

Grandpa ... you will be missed.

I will show my love for you and honor your memory
by how I live my life.

I love you.

Monday, November 23, 2009

The Movie Craze

Like every hormone-driven teenager ... I may (or may not) have seen New Moon twice this weekend.

Oh wait ... I'm an adult.

Oh well, no shame.

And to whomever the director is ... I'd like to thank him or her for the 1-2-naked men who phase into wolves.

The Eye Candy was awesome.

And thanks for that.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Africa's Beauty

I want to share this beautiful picture
taken by Scott Harrison of charity: water.

charity: water does life-changing work.

I am proud to support them however I can each month.

This is a picture of a girl in Central African Republic
as she carries clean water to her home.

A new charity: water well was drilled in her village.

Monday, November 16, 2009

First Gift - $$ Update

Want to know what happens when we all come together
and donate $10 for fresh water wells?

In 24 hours, $10,000 dollars was raised.

Proving life-saving, clean water to over 1,000 people for 10 years.

1,000 mothers and children and brothers and grandfathers.

And boys like these ...
(Liberia photo courtesy of Jody Landers)


Thank you.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


Today has been a rough day.

They can't all be good.

I'm sad and overwhelmed.

I'm juggling to many things.

And then not in my control, many things in my personal life.

NOT fun.

This is never a good time for teachers (report cards), and adding things to my plate is what I do best.

Or shall I say worse.

So apparently I'm just writing this blog post to complain.

To tell someone else that I'm sad and overwhelmed.

A LOT going on.

A lot of heavy things.

A lot of accountability.

Perhaps it will make me feel better now that I've written this.

We'll see!

A Holiday Rap

Send your own ElfYourself eCards

Friday, November 13, 2009

We're Buying Water Today

Today is the day to buy your first Christmas present of the season.


For millions of people.

For 20 years.

$10 is all it takes.

How good does THAT feel!?!
Click HERE and use the yellow DONATE button.

Let's make water erupt from the floor of Africa.

And give men, women, boys and girls the gift water.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

First Gift

Last year, we encouraged people to give $10 on Fridays.
This year, we are only doing it once.

One day.

24 hours.

So this Friday, November 13th, we are raising our voices and buying water.

Let the first gift we all buy be life.

It's going to be a big day.

We would love for you all to join us.

$10 will give one person clean water for 10 years.

Collectively, the impact could be huge.

As always, all donation go directly to charity: water, are tax-deductible,
and 100% goes directly to CLEAN water solutions.

First Gift.

$10 viral campaign.

November 13th.

Consider yourself invited ...

Click HERE to donate using the yellow donate button so we can keep track.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Jody in Liberia

Jody Landers recently traveled to Liberia with a couple charity: water and Water For Christmas workers & volunteers.

Enjoy some of her breathtaking pictures from various townships ... and be sure to check out her blog for more coverage & details.

New well ...

Old water source ...

Jody with a new friend ...

This is what optimism and joy in the face of adversary looks like ...

Thank you Jody.

Thank you.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Priceless Picture

Do you know what I absolutely LOVE about this picture one of my students colored?

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Prince Caspian, How I Love Thee

I've been totally obsessed with the Chronicles of Narnia series the last couple of weeks.

I know, I know ... I'm like 23 years late.

But seriously.

It's so good (please use a 10 year-old's voice when reading this).

So I couldn't help but laugh when I woke up yesterday ...

And realized I had KISSED PRINCE CASPIAN in my dreams!

Don't judge me.

It was a really good kiss.

Besides, look at that adorable smile. That hair. That medal armor.

Could YOU resist?

Joy & Sorrow

A girlfriend sent this to me yesterday and I just loved it.

See what you think ...

Lisa, I read this today in a book called The Prophet.

Then the woman said, speak to us of joy and sorrow. And he answered:

Your joy is your sorrow unmasked. And the selfsame well from which your laughter rises is oftentimes filled with your tears.

And how else can it be?

The deeper the sorry carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.

Is not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned in the potters oven?

And is not the lute that soothes your spirit, the very wood that was hollowed with knives?

When you are joyous, look deep into your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight.

Some of you say, "joy is greater than sorrow," others say, "nay, sorrow is the greater."

But I say to you, they are inseparable.

Together they come, and when one sits alone with you at your board, remember that the other is asleep upon your bed.

Verily, you are suspended like scales between your sorrow and your joy.

Only when you are empty are you at standstill and balanced.

When the treasure-keeper lifts you to weigh his gold and his silver, needs must your joy or your sorrow rise or fall.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Reminders ...

I'm sure your totally sick of me being depressed and writing Debbie Downer posts.

But it's where I'm at, and if you don't check my blog for a while, I'll totally understand.

I put on a happy face all day (and most of the time I truly am having happy moments), but the dark pain is always there. Always trying to rear its head out. And I spent extra energy during the day trying to push out painful memories and reminders.

I've been trying really hard to look on the bright side.

Heck ... I'm a bright-side kinda girl.

But some days are just really hard.

Days that you fight back tears.

Days like today.

Here are a few things that are really hard.

Watching a movie and realizing books like this .... are on your coffee table.

Getting your weekly email updates titled: Your Belly - 10 Weeks ...

But your not.

Being able to choose between 2 pair of pants because that's all the fit.

Okay ... I'm done for now.

Thanks for letting me grieve with you ... no matter how annoying it is for you.

There are a bagillion positives that have come out of our unfortunate circumstance.

I'll write about those soon!


I'm trying to heal.

Trying to feel better.

Trying to be positive and find silver linings.

But this is so hard.

Sad days ... please go away.

Or at least lessen your hold over me.

Healing is so difficult and painful.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Happy To Report ...

I am feeling much better today.

I am thankful for a day without physical pain.

And I'm choosing to find small things to be happy about.

Like this for example ...
Thank you Starbucks, for your holiday cups.

And for putting a smile on my face.

Because most of the time ... it's the little things that make us happy.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Screaming Pain

More transparency ... as I heal.

Last night I had a bad scare.

Many of you know that I had a D&C on Wednesday.

I had severe cramping coupled with body-aches after lunch on Saturday and it didn't stop until today.

My abdomen hurt. My legs hurt. My lower back hurt. My neck hurt.

I hurt.

I was really scared.

I had been warned about blood clots and infections and fear had been at the forefront of my mind for days.

I mean seriously ... isn't having a D&C painful enough?

After hours of contemplating "I'm sure I'm not that bad," and "I don't really want to bother them on the weekend," ... I called the on-call doctor last night.

She patiently listened to my symptoms, made sure I didn't need anything stronger for the pain, and then asked me to call the doctor's office first thing in the morning. She thought I was most likely had a clot. They would do an ultrasound in the morning, and if there was clotting, I would have to have a 2nd D&C.

I thanked her, hung up the phone, and sat at the edge of my bed for over an hour.

Crying ... out of sheer sadness.

Praying ... for a healthy body.

Begging ... for a respite from the physical pain.

The shock of having another D&C ripped through my body. I had to do my 1st D&C with very little pain medication since I'm allergic to most of it.

I was terrified to go back in.

I did my best to process this new information ... and went to bed.

I was so tired of thinking. Feeling.

When I woke up in the morning, in an effort to not give Too Much Information ... I'm happy to report that I passed a clot and am 100% cramp/pain free!

I talked to my doctor, she said she didn't need to see me unless I start cramping again.

Thank you God, for healing my body.

My friend sent this to me this morning.

It's a nice reminder.

I wrote it on a piece paper and have held it in my pocket all day:

Do not fear, for I am with you.
Do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you.
I will hold you in my righteous right hand.
- Isaiah 41:10

I am so ready for the physical pain to be over.

I still need to work on all the emotional pain, but it's difficult when your physical pain screams so much louder.

Sunday, November 1, 2009


So ... here's where I am.


The realization that I'm not pregnant anymore is starting to really sink in.

And I'm left with a lot of sadness.

I'm finding it hard to create positivity today.

When I get dressed, I feel fat.

I have a chubby belly.

A belly meant for a sweet little baby.

But now it's empty.

I feel like I have nothing to show for pounds gained.

My abdomen hurts from my D&C.

I feel like I've done a million sit-ups and side crunches.

But for no reason really.

Not because I worked out.

Not because a baby is in there and tendons are stretching.

I just feel really empty.

And really, it's not about the weight or sore abdomen.

Those are just symptoms and reminders.

It's what they represent.


I know God will heal me.

Time will pass and I'll feel better.

But not today.

Today, I will honor my feelings.

And feel empty.

And that's okay.