Friday, April 27, 2012

Fun Fact

Sorry I haven't posted in a while, I've been working on a post but I want to get it 'just right'... yes, my type A made it through the brain surgery just fine.

Anyways... just learned that one of my favorite songs that has really ministered to me over the past few months is brain tumor related. Cool huh? Interesting that this is also the words I've chosen to end my posts over the past two years.

Laura Songs, "Blessings", is about her husbands brain tumor.  Here's a link to it... enjoy



We pray for blessings
We pray for peace
Comfort for family, protection while we sleep
We pray for healing, for prosperity
We pray for Your mighty hand to ease our suffering
All the while, You hear each spoken need
Yet love us way too much to give us lesser things

'Cause what if Your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights 
Are what it takes to know You’re near
What if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

We pray for wisdom
Your voice to hear
And we cry in anger when we cannot feel You near
We doubt Your goodness, we doubt Your love
As if every promise from Your Word is not enough
All the while, You hear each desperate plea
As long that we have faith to believe

'Cause what if Your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights 
Are what it takes to know You’re near
And what if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

When friends betray us
When darkness seems to win
We know that pain reminds this heart
That this is not, this is not our home
It's not our home

'Cause what if Your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
And what if a thousand sleepless nights
Are what it takes to know You’re near
What if my greatest disappointments
Or the aching of this life
Is the revealing of a greater thirst this world can’t satisfy
And what if trials of this life
The rain, the storms, the hardest nights
Are Your mercies in disguise

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Egg Salad

Lunch in REMEMBRANCE of Tari! An egg salad sandwich, Cheetos puffs (they are full like her smile), and of course Diet Coke.

Tari & I - my last day in the Escrow Department.

Mr. Stringer, Tari & I - when I was selected as the first ever Loan Servicing Division Employee of the Year

Shannon, Joy, Tari and I - Halibut Fish Trip/Salty Dog

With the title of this post, you may be wondering and I'll answer your questions with...No, I didn't change my blog to a cooking one :) it's just egg salad ties to what's been on my mind & heart the last few days.

It always amazes me how God works.  Just a few weeks ago as I talked to my Mom about upcoming Easter plans, I mentioned my love for egg salad and how I couldn't wait to have hard boiled eggs in the house.  She commented that the best egg salad she & my sister had was what I prepared from memory and without taste in Rehab about two years prior.

 SIDE NOTE: As part of my requirement for discharge from the hospital, I had to prove to my Occupational Therapist, I was safe in the kitchen.  When asked what I wanted to make I joked I would prepare a peanut butter & jelly sandwich.  She humored me and gently nudged me forward to something that was a little more difficult. I selected egg salad because it's one of my favorite sandwiches, but only if prepared by a few select people (my friend Tari).  I'm picky about it.  I carefully ran through the instructions in my memory and completed the supply request.  When it arrived the next day, I was nervous and a little on edge. How could I make something without tasting it? What if I cut my fingers chopping the egg up? How many of these mayonnaise, mustard, sweet relish packets would I need?  I boiled my eggs and after they cooled, I peeled them and began making egg salad. I even assembled a few sandwiches for my 24/7 cheering team, which they gobbled down. I did it! No injuries either.   Victory!

Continued above story:  As I continued talking with my Mom about egg salad, I commented that the best egg salad sandwiches I ever had were made by my former boss & friend Tari.  I've know Tari since I was in elementary school. She & my Mom worked together and after my Mom moved to another servicing unit, I began in her old department with Tari.  I use to beg her to bring in egg salad during spring time and she happily obliged.  I think she kind of saw me like a daughter and was happy to meet my request.  I often house sat for her when she'd go out of town.  I really loved her like family.  Time passed and after I got my Master's degree,I decided to leave my job at the bank with her and go into my studied field of counseling.  I had learned so much and was ready to spread my wings.  Although it was tough, she cheered me on.  I still have the Orchid plant she gave me on my last day there.  When I came back to the bank a year and a half later, I was in a new unit, but she was sure to welcome me back with a warm hug and kind words.  A few years earlier she had beamed with pride as she helped nominate me as the First recipient of the Loan Servicing Division's Employee of the Year.  I still have the notes & pictures.  What treasured memories! During that phone call, I asked my Mom how Tari was and she filled me in on what Tari had recently shared with her. Although life wasn't perfect she had a beautiful daughter that she loved more than anything. My Mom mentioned that Tari needed prayer and I made it a point to send her a card telling her I loved her & to tell her I was thinking of & praying for her.  Little did I know that it would be the final time I would get to 'converse' with her.  I received notice from my Mom Easter night that Tari was killed Easter morning in a cabin fire.  The details are still pending and I'm trying to understand as best I can.  My heart aches for her daughter Lindsea.  In reality I'm numb and finding it difficult to accept.  Am I in a bad dream?  Thoughts are whirling in my head, so much I would have said if I'd only made the choice to invite her out for coffee or stopped by to see her.  I am thankful I listened when the Holy Spirit prompted me to send a card a few weeks ago. Now I just hope she got it, read it, and felt loved.

Tari, my friend, you had a heart of gold. You'd give the shirt off your back to someone in need regardless of what it would cost you. You were filled with laughter that was contagious.  I was blessed to know you. It seems surreal to know you're gone.  I think for awhile I'll expect to see you in passing when I go to the bank for a visit.  Thank you for taking me under your wing when I started at the bank and teaching and guiding me.  I will miss you! I love you! Goodbye my friend. May you Rest in Peace.


Monday, April 09, 2012


Two years ago yesterday, I was first waking up again in my own bed.  Was it different? Undeniably! Was it real? It felt so, especially when Darren brought the boys in. I remember those days well, they were full of uncertainty and question.  But, just as God assured me then & this morning in my devotional - With God, we are more capable than we think we are.  Just like God equipped so many before me, He was making it possible for me to be just what He wanted me to be.  I am so thankful for that!!!!! Yesterday, as I sat in Church with my family by me, I realized the milestone God was making.  Just as He indicated with the empty tomb that He wasn't finished, I don't believe He's finished with me either.  I have no idea what that entails, but I'm giddy with excitement for it.  I see God's hand in all of it... From the two year mark, to my morning devotional, to the cup my coffee is in,  I am lavished with gifts from Him.  My coffee cup says "Life is Good" - its a cup my Mom bought me on a girls trip we had while I was pregnant with Kadin. I had wanted to do some baby clothes shopping at an outlet store and figured my closest option was Seattle. Darren graciously stayed home with Zachary while my Mom and Sister and I headed for a weekend trip to Seattle.  A few weeks before we were to leave, the unknown brain tumor reared it's ugly head via pregnancy issues. I had a low fluid level and I had to get that up before my Doctor would let me travel.  I was barely 20 weeks and couldn't believe I was having trouble.  I drank everything! I carried a water bottle everywhere I went & forced myself to drink.  Finally, a week before we were set to leave, we were given the okay.  This cup was a gift to remember the trip, I thought it was silly and thought my Mom was just being her sentimental self.  I put the mug away & didn't think much of it until I was finally eating & drinking a year and a half later.  Now I use it almost everyday :) Thank You Mom! A few weeks after this trip (Halloween 2009), I began to experience vertigo symptoms, the most debilitating symptom of my brain tumor.  What a blessing that trip was for me. In the past two years, I've experienced so much. When I think back to those first days at home, I'm baffled how Darren did it all, but I'm so grateful he did. What an amazing man. I love him so much!  Thank you Babe! Thank you again to those of you who spent countless hours praying for me! You are a part of my recovery and God's miracle. Blessings.

Saturday, April 07, 2012


My little guy has suffered from asthma, eczema, tummy troubles & possible food allergies, some since birth and I wondered if it was all connected and due to testable allergies. So after discussing it with the boy's Pediatrician we got a referral to have him seen by an Allergist. 

Testing occurred and Kadin was a champ! After 40 pokes it was discovered he has the following results:

Minor: cat, dog, milk, almond 
Major: peanut, egg, garlic

Over the past two weeks, all I've been able to do is formulate more questions. But regardless of my fear, confusion, doubt, questions, I've been continually reminded that God is in control and He's constantly watching over us. He watched Kadin especially close until we discovered this news. Now it's up to us to be more proactive & creative with food options especially. 

Some of the encouragement God provided to me was:

  • Psalm 17:6 I call on you, O God, for you will answer me; give ear to me and hear my prayer.
  • Psalm 55:22 Give your burdens to the Lord, and He will not permit the godly to slip and fall.
  • Friends that have had little ones with similar experiences who were willingly to field my questions & offer advice and encouragement.
As I've tried to wrap my mind around this new challenge, I'm filled with more & more questions. I wonder how Kadin hasn't had a reaction to any of these allergens (PTL) when he has been enjoying many foods with these allergens in them for over a year. I noticed small hives & rash after a small exposure to peanut butter & I suspected a allergic reaction to it, but GARLIC? I'm baffled! Garlic is in everything, EVERYTHING! I'm trying to be proactive and eliminate Kadin's exposure to his allergens, but I'm so confused. I'm drafting a list of questions to address with his Doctors office. I hope for some clarity and direction. Until then here's to creative cooking with limitations :) I'll let y'all know where this goes. Please pray for us as we navigate this road of uncertainty. 

Thank you Lord for the encouragement you've given so far.