22/52 weeks

Sunday, May 31, 2015

                                                                         “A portrait of my kids, once a week, every week in 2015”

                    Spending most of our days sleeping in or at a splash pad. Summer has been nice to us so far.

Secret Garden

Friday, May 29, 2015

These guys get me.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Wyatt's haircut

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

The day before the last day of school Wyatt announced that he needed to get a hair style fitting for a big first grader and not a kindergartner.

I have always been very liberal about letting him make his own choices regarding what he would like to do with his hair. But to my surprise he went for a full Mohawk. And didn't hesitate when telling the stylist. 

My shy timid little boy is getting more and more out of his shell each day. 

I absolutely love it.

When it came down to honoring his wishes, it surprised us all.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

I’m not one of those people who takes the time on memorial day to go and visit graves. I find it to be very commercialized now. I say that because literally at the graveyards (here in Utah anyway) they have a Pepsi or Coke truck out in the middle of the grounds for you to get a soda or a snack while you are out and about putting on the same mums someone else has on your loved ones grave.
I am all about remembering those who have passed but I would rather do it on another day under other circumstances.

Until this year.

I am not sure if I ever mention it here on the blog that Cody’s (my husband) dad died on the 4th of February this year. He was 57 and had a lot of medical and mental issues but it was still a shock to us when he indeed passed. It was always my fear of what my role would be when that happened. I would think of that consistently when we’d visit him in the ICU when he was on life support a few years ago.

My husband is just a quite person about how he feels that I didn’t know what I would be like if it did happen. So when it did, one of the first things I thought was how do I even talk to Cody?
He’s dad’s passing was so different from all the times I lost my grandparents on my parents side that I learned that life is way more beautiful then I thought. And that celebrating someone's life is more then finding the perfect casket or plot of land that you will bury them at.

My father in law was a character. He would wear Hawaiian shirts and mismatched knee length socks and a different colored shoe on each foot. He had the best dad jokes and was so wise beyond his years. He made the best homemade spaghetti I ever had and listened to the best music.

He also struggled with the same demons that Cody does. The never ending depression. The never feeling like they are and were good enough. That life would be better with out them. The social anxiety. The fear of big crowds. That took up most of Rulan’s life. So when it came down to honoring his wishes it surprised us all.

He chose to donate his body to science. He struggle with so many physical and mental issues that he knew by doing this that one day someone else would benefit from what science could possibly learn from him.

We learned of  his wish the day he died. So as they came to take his body from his home we saw him for the last time there surrounded by those who loved him. We kissed his still semi warm checks, whispered our love for him in his ears and hugged him for the last time, not in a funeral home but in his home.

And as he left to be transported to the University of Utah we stood there silenced not knowing what to expect next. Where would we go from here, how would it work?
That was the most beautiful part because we sat there together in his home surrounded by his things looking at a scrapbook full of the things he loved laughing, loving and crying.

I learned there, that no matter how we go or where we choose to be after we are gone. Our life will be summed up by the people who love us, telling stories about us, remembering how we loved them.
So this memorial weekend I did visit a gravesite not just for my father in law but for all those who chose to donate their bodies to science. I got to be apart of a annual memorial service they hold for the families of those brave love ones where they tell us how grateful they are because of our loved ones. How much they are learning and how much they respect their bodies.

It was beautiful.

So beautiful that when my husband and I pass we will follow in his footsteps. I thank god everyday that I got to be apart of Rulan’s life and death journey. He was truly one of my favorite people and was loved more then he could have ever imagined.

We miss you Rulan Joy Christensen.
Linking up with Mama Kat

21/52 weeks

Sunday, May 24, 2015

‘“A portrait of my kids, once a week, every week in 2015”slcadventure16

After the Wyatt’s last day of kindergarten I picked him up and we headed to SLC for my father in law’s memorial event that was being held for those who donated their bodies to science.  We of course had to explore SLC afterwards and we find this cool hole in the wall pizza joint that had amazing art work plastered all over the building that we took our pizza slices with us as when walked around taking it all in.

We love finding hidden gems. (more pictures to come.)

Last day of kindergarten

Sunday, May 24, 2015


Well that’s it. Wyatt is no longer in kindergarten. It is crazy to think that only a year ago he didn’t know how to read or do math. That he didn’t have a great group of friends (or me.) that he does now. That he was little and a lot shyer than he is now.

He has grown so much over this year that when I see him I don’t think of him as my baby anymore but my little man. I am so proud of him. He took to school so well. He mastered all that he could he even took it upon himself to do extra work to earn his doctorate in kindergarten. (which is his schools way of trying to put across the importance of preparing for college at a young age.) He would do extra math packets, art projects and science projects on top of his computer and paper homework. As well as reading books he would get from class each day and reading his own books at home for 20mins a night.

He worked hard and was ecstatic when he earned the extra field trips with each “degree” he earn as well as the amazing educational skills he learned on top of that.

I told him from the start of school that he would be the one responsible for his homework and turning it in and he took to it like a champ. I did nothing but help when asked.

And now lets take a look at the first day of school to the last day of school in pictures…


Its crazy to see how much he has changed. Such a tall first grader now.


We are all excited to have him back for the summer. (just don’t tell Gunner.)


I am so proud of you Wyatt. I love you bud.

Speech Therapy

Saturday, May 23, 2015


Gunner is about 20 months old (or as I like to call it 1 1/2,) He currently doesn’t say words but only sounds which was a little disconcerting because a few months before that he said words like mom, dad, brother, hi, bye and then out of no where he stopped and just did the sounds of the words. Like awm, awae, aber, iiiee, yi.

So at his last doctor appointment a few months back I asked the doctor about it. He didn’t seem to concerned with it and said that if he still wasn’t then we should look into something. He checked his ears and everything looked fine.

I still didn’t feel right about it. I knew that we needed to do something to help so I reached out to Facebook who my friends suggested that I look into the early intervention program which a did a few weeks ago.

When we had his first initial screening he tested high (33 months) on all the social aspects and functional aspects but for his speech he tested at a 9 month level.

They tested his ears and found nothing on the first test but when they saw such a difference from one level to another they question his ears again because they said that normally a jump from 9 months to 33 months would be a child that would be on the spectrum but he as no signs of that at all.

They did another test for his inner ear and saw nothing on his right ear but some abnormals in his left. They said that really that could be anything. Did he have a cold earlier or maybe he had water in his ears. So they didn’t want to rule that out.

They left us with the “we will call you.” and we walked out feeling like we had relief that it wasn’t in our heads that yes there was an issue but that we were still in the not knowing stage.

and mom guilt was in full force.

We had our first home visit with our speech therapist Sue Ellen on Tuesday. She was full of energy and brightness and had such a way to her that in the times I was speaking to her and wanted to cry she would see that and reassure me that  none of this was my fault and that we will have goals and meet those goals and we will get him to where he is suppose to be, whatever that is.

Our goals are:

  • Bath time toy time with sign language. So I will have 3 toys, a ball, a car, a duck and line them up and have him ask for them using the sign.
  • When he is eating we need him to use the sign for more and what kind of drink he wants: Milk, Juice, Water.
  • When he says a sound for a word like awae for daddy we say “yes, that’s daddy he is home/here” and point to dad. So he knows what the correct sound is like.
  • Go to group toddler class up to 4 times a week.

So far we have done the more sign when he wants a drink and have he use the correct sign for which drink he wants and man is it crazy how quickly he caught on to that and how wonderful it is to not have a tantrum because we do not know what he was asking for. He also does the sign for his toy cars, so when he is in his car seat he uses the sign to tell us that he wants his toy cars. (that one is still a little tuff.)

It has only been 3 days but I am already exciting at how much we’ve accomplished in that amount of time. We still are concerned with the inner ear and will have it looked at each time they visit just to be sure but so far they don’t believe that could be the case.

Are next visit with the speech therapist will be on the 29th and we will have more intense visit where she will work one on one with him. By the way, I can not believe that all of this is free. Its wonderful.


Friday, May 22, 2015


Cody and I connect so much when we are dancing and singing along to his favorite band 311. That when he says that the band is coming again. We buy tickets and go regardless if we drove hours away a few weeks ago to see them.

I love to see how he zones out and becomes this outgoing person who doesn’t give 2 cents about whose watching him or what he is doing when he is dancing and rocking out. Some of the best times we ever had are when we are together in a crowd singing along to 311.