Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Growth Hormone?

Julianne is little. Ever noticed that? Our doctor has. He's been watching Julianne for a few years now. And even knowing my history, (I was a serious "late bloomer"...aka Consitutional Growth Delay) he still was "concerned" about Julianne. Dr. Lindsay doesn't get "concerned" easily so I sat up and paid attention. It just so happens that Dr. Lindsay, as well as being a pediatrician, is also an excellent pediatric endocrinologist. Lucky us! He's sent Julianne in for various tests recently checking thyroid and growth hormone levels. Those came back normal. He also sent her in for a bone age scan. The scan came back with a bone age of 10. Chronological age for Julianne was 10 and 3/4. Growth age was 7. Which means, although she was 10 years old, she looked like she was 7. For Julianne to just be a late bloomer like me, her bone age should've been closer to her growth age of 7. But it wasn't. It was closer to her chronological age. Which is obviously what it should be if she's growing normally. Which she's not. (Did you follow all of that?) So, educated predictions put her at an adult height of 4'8''.

Four feet, eight inches?? That's when my heart started sinking. That's just too short. What if she can't drive a car? What if she always has to stand on a stool to reach the kitchen countertop. What if no boys want to ask her to the prom because, as cute as she is, she's just too little? And that's when I started to cry. I know what it's like to be short. I hated kids calling me "shrimp" and "short stuff". I hated it that none of the boys would flirt with me at the mall because they thought I was still just a little girl. I hated it when wise grownups would tell me that even though I looked young now, when I was in my 30's and I still looked like I was in my 20's I would be grateful. (Which is true by the way....but I hated hearing it then.) I just wanted to be normal. Rebekah and Julianne are both small. They handle it better than I did. According to Dr. Lindsay, Rebekah is like me, a late bloomer. I'm okay with her dealing with being short if I know that eventually she'll put on a growth spurt and end up normal like I did. But for Julianne...to be that short for her whole life? I don't want that for her.

So, Dr. Lindsay has now officially recommended we "intervene". And now Bryan, Julianne and I have to decide if we want to subject Julianne to growth hormone. It's expensive. Insurance companies don't like to pay for it. We're worried about side effects and risks. It's kind of tough making a decision now for something that may or may not happen in the future. Because when it comes right down to it, predicting Julianne's adult height really is just an educated guess. She's a healthy, happy little girl right now. It's not like she has some disease where it becomes obvious that she needs medical help. But I'd hate to do nothing and then watch her struggle...emotionally, physically....knowing we could've done something. So I guess we do research and we gather all the information we can and then we pray and pray and then pray some more that we will do what's right for Julianne.

This picture is of the test Julianne took yesterday. It was a more serious growth hormone test. She went in to the doctor's office fasting. They gave her some medication and sent her down to the lab to have her blood drawn a half hour later and then again a half hour after that. Then back up for another kind of medication and two more blood draws. She was amazing! Didn't flinch, didn't complain. The lab worker said Julianne was the best 11 year old she'd ever drawn blood from. I was so proud of my girl!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Brandon's Baptism

Brandon was baptized a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints yesterday. My favorite part of the whole day? After the confirmation the tight circle of uncles, grandfathers and family friends surrounding Brandon widened so I could see inside as Brandon stood up and looked around at them all. He was wearing his new black suit and looked like a little miniature of all those men in their dark suits. And as he stopped at each one to shake hands or receive a hug I could kind of see in my mind's eye the priesthood holder he will be someday.

Some other memorable things....
*The way Brandon let out a half squeak-half gasp as he came up out of the water. Apparently it was pretty cold!
*Listening to Brandon sing with his sisters "I'm Trying To Be Like Jesus." He's never sung with Rebekah and Julianne during a musical number before. He did great!
*Feeding 38 people afterwards at our house and enjoying the hours of good food, chatting and playing.

If you asked him, my guess is that Brandon would say yesterday was probably the best day of his life.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Happy Birthday Brandon

When Brandon was just a little guy I often found myself calling him "my boy." I'd never had a brother. He was my first son after two daughters. He really was "my boy." One day I made the mistake of calling him "my son." He looked at me with part confusion, part annoyance. "Mom," he said, "I am Dad's son. I'm your BOY!" Ooops.
"My boy" turned 8 years old yesterday. And being an 8 year old Brandon means that you love:

*Talking...especially in class when you're really not supposed to be.
*Playing PSP...best present ever!
*Dancing to High School Musical 3 soundtrack...the kid has some serious moves.
*Climbing to the top of the 20 foot tall pole in the backyard...and giving Mom a heart attack.
*Watching "The Suite Life of Zach and Cody".
*Reading Harry Potter with Mom...and trying to convince Mom to read another chapter even though it is past 10:00 and Mom can hardly see straight.
*Wrestling with Dad.
*Spending every minute possible playing with friends.
*Eating zuchini.
*Wearing a GL t-shirt as often as Mom will allow so he can look like Dad.

I LOVE my boy. Happy Birthday Brandon!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Jump On It

A quote from Brandon: "There's a lot of fun things in life and that, that was one of them!"
This was in response to me asking him what he thought about his birthday trip to Jump On It. Brandon is our jumper. The kid can do all sorts of fancy tricks on the trampoline that I will NEVER be able to do...even if it weren't for the fact that I am getting way too old for that kind of thing. So going to a jumping/trampoline place seemed like a no-brainer to celebrate his birthday. But it couldn't be just any blow-up toy jumping place. No, that wouldn't be anywhere cool enough. So we found Jump On It. Wall to wall trampolines. And I do mean on the actual wall! The kid was in heaven. He was probably the smallest kid jumping in the advanced jumping area but even the big kids were stopping to watch him.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Favorite Photo Friday: Proposal

Sixteen years ago today Bryan and I got engaged. We dated for 6 months in high school. I cried buckets of tears when he left on his mission. I went to Snow College. We wrote lots of letters. Well...let me clarify that: I wrote lots of letters...about one a week while Bryan averaged about one every two months. A good letter writer he is not! He taught the good Spanish speakers of Philly the gospel. I studied, sang, and dated a lot. Bryan's last few letters started hinting marriage which made my heart pitter patter in love and joy. He dubbed home his next transfer and me his new companion. We dated. He continued to hint about marriage. I asked him to stop beating about the bush already and just ask me! Reassured, we went ring shopping. He asked me to marry him in front of a huge crowd of family and friends at his brother Steven's missionary farewell. I said yes! We kissed, we hugged, our mothers cried. We set the date for July 15th. It was a good day.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Alarm Anxiety

Has this ever happened to you? You know you need to get up extra early for something. We're talking extra, extra early....like, in my case, 5:15 AM. So you set your alarm clock. You check and double check that it's set correctly. Making sure that it's not accidentally set for 5:15 PM instead of AM. Or, like me last week, 6:15 instead of 5:15. And then you rush to bed trying your hardest to get in as much sleep as possible before that alarm rings at what still seems like the middle of the night. But then you sleep like garbage. You are so worried about that darn alarm, or about trying to get a decent number of hours of shut eye despite getting up so early, that you keep waking up. Tossing and turning, finding yourself checking the clock every couple of hours to make sure you didn't oversleep. It's the pits. And as I was sitting in the car at 5:30 AM this morning with some friends heading to our swimming class I found out that I'm not the only one that struggles with this. We call it Alarm Anxiety. Do you get it too?

Monday, March 16, 2009

Too Soon

I got bit by a mosquito today. I could be wrong but I would've sworn today was only March 16th. By the calendar it isn't even spring yet....we still have 4 days left of winter! But the mosquitos are out in force here in my neighborhood. I'm thinking there is something seriously wrong with that. And I am not pleased.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Julianne: The Star of the Show!

Julianne performed "Into the Woods" with her acting class yesterday. She played the part of the Baker's Wife. For those who aren't familiar with the show... The Baker and his wife have a curse on their family meaning they can't have a baby. The witch who lives next door says she can reverse the curse if they bring her the ingredients for a potion: a cape as red as blood (Little Red Riding Hood), a cow as white as milk (Jack and the Beanstalk), hair as yellow as corn (Rapunzel) and a slipper as pure as gold (Cinderella). The Baker and his wife run around the woods for 3 days finding and losing and then finding again all these ingredients and of course, interacting with all these other fairy tales. It's a fun show but a HARD show. I've seen it many times and was rather impressed that they were able to pull it off.
Honestly, and I swear I'm NOT biased, Julianne was the best little actress up there. After the first show an older man came up to Julianne, shook her hand, and in all seriousness said, "Young lady, will you call me when you get on Broadway so I can come see you?" Julianne wasn't quite sure how to respond to that other than to say, "Okay....."

Discussing how and where to get another cow as white as milk when the orginal one dies... The cow was played by a 5 year old kid. Oh my, it was SO cute!

Playing tug of war with Cinderella's shoe.

Baker's Wife: "I need that shoe to have a child!"
Cinderella: "That makes no sense!"

Heading out to find the ingredients for the potion.

Helping Cinderella hide from the prince who is pursuing her. My favorite exchange of the whole show:

Prince: "Where did she go?"
Baker's Wife: "Who?"
Prince: "Don't play the fool, woman!"
Baker's Wife: Oh! You mean the beautiful young maiden in the ball gown? She went in that direction. I was trying to hold her here for you..."
Prince: "I can capture my own damsel, thank you!"

Singing the title song "Into the Woods".

Friday, March 13, 2009

Favorite Photo Friday: Underwater

June 2008. Swimming in St. George and messing around with our waterproof camera. Brandon wanted me to take a picture of him swimming under water. Took a few tries because I didn't want to duck under the water to see what I was doing. So it was more about holding the camera under water and taking blind shots. Came up with this one. Brandon was pleased. And it's turned into one of my favorite shots.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Whose Mother Is This?

We went to my parents house last night. My mom pulled out this picture and asked my girls who they thought it was. Rebekah, no doubt at all in her voice, said, "It's my Mom. She's pregnant with me, right?" Ah, no. Actually the picture was taken in 1973 and is MY mother pregnant with ME. While I was growing up I never thought I looked much like my mom. I always thought I took more after my dad. But wow, there is a pretty big resemblance, don't you think? Which I'm more than happy about because, dang, don't you think she looks really pretty?

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


We have cows in our backyard. Well, the field behind our backyard, really. And I swear, there are probably close to 100 cows back there. I find myself watching them a lot. One died yesterday somewhat close to our fence. We spent a lot of time trying to figure out if that mound back there really was a cow, or if it was something else. We looked out various windows trying to get a better glimpse. We brought out binoculars. Brandon finally went outside in the snow to check it out and came back with word that, yes, it really was a dead cow. And then the kids spent all of dinner making up songs about dead cows. Bryan told them the melody was too upbeat for such a sad message so they changed it into a funeral dirge. Same words though. "Poor dead cow in the back of our house. We're sorry that you had to leave so soon...." Let me tell you, it was quite the concert.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Rebekah: The Oopma Loompa Extraordinare

For the past 3 months Rebekah has been in rehearsals for her Jr. High's production of "Willy Wonka." She has loved every minute of it and was so sad that last night was the final performance. She played the part of an Oompa Loompa...but also, because she is so little, they had her be a "candy kid." (See above picture). The candy kids were the ones buying candy during the song "The Candyman Can". Remember that song?

Who can make a sunrise,
Sprinkle it with dew,
Cover it in choclate
and a miracle or two?
The Candyman
The Candyman can.
The Candyman can cause he mixes it with love and makes the world taste good.
Yep, that's the one. Ah, memories.
Anyhow, it was a cute little show. Pretty darn good for a Jr. High production. Personally, and maybe I'm biased, but I feel that the Oopma Loompa scenes were the best. :)
Rebekah is the 4th from the left on the top row with her hands out to her sides.

Weren't the Oopma Loompa costumes great?? I got asked to help sew. Umm. I don't sew. Sorry!

Rebekah and her friend Casey

Favorite Photo Friday: Diva Sopranos

I almost didn't audition for Lex de Azevedo's Millennium Choir. I was too busy. I had Young Women activities to go to on Wednesday nights. I had a nursing baby. My husband traveled a lot. But the spirit whispered, "Do this! You need this!" So I did. I made it work. And it has changed my life. This, the soprano section of Millennium, is filled with amazing women. We have sung, laughed, cried, rejoiced, learned and loved together. We have pounded out notes and fought over who gets to sing 1st soprano together. We have found ourselves with goose-bumps at the same time. We have felt the Spirit at the same time. What if I hadn't listened? Look at what I would have missed. April 2004.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

The Symphony and The Library

I went, as a chaperone, on a fieldtrip with Julianne's class yesterday. Abravanel Hall, to hear the Symphony, was our first stop. We were late. Bus problems. So we were sent to the 3rd tier. 125 kids climbing those steps all the way to the top, giggling and chatting as they went. But when the usher opened the door and the kids got their first look inside the actual hall.... The giggling stopped and I could hear hushed exclamations of "Wow!", and "Look at the chandeliers!" and other such comments. And I thought, yeah, Abravanel Hall is rather opulent looking. I've been there numerous times....as a member of the audience and as a performer on the stage. It was rather fun looking at it through the children's eyes. Oh, and the music? Yeah, that was pretty good too.

Then we headed to the Salt Lake City Library. Have you ever been there? If not, honestly, you should go. It's so amazing! I had been there once before but it had been a LONG time ago when it first opened. I remember being impressed then and was impressed again now. At one point we stopped in front of a room that was an art gallery. Our tour guide told us how different artists locally could showcase their art there, how it changed every few weeks. The kids asked if they could go in and look at the art up close. I was impressed. The tour guide looked impressed also and said yes. I was glad. I wanted to look at the art too. There were ceramic sculptures and also paintings on the wall. I saw a group of boys standing in front of a particular painting. One boy was gesturing with his hands all around the painting. It was clear he could see something there in this modernistic piece. Again, I was impressed. I walked closer to hear what he was saying. I could see him pointing to specific things, sweeping his hands in the same direction as the paintbrush strokes as he shared his interpretation with the other boys around him. They were all nodding their heads and pointing. They could see it too. And when I got close enough to hear, I realized that these boys thought this painting looked a lot like....
a basketball court. "See? Here's the hoop! And over here? Here's the backboard. And right here is the free throw line!" I laughed and laughed. Was I expecting something more profound? These are 11 year old boys after all. And really, the fact that they wanted to look at the art, and took the time to actually interpret it was something to be admired and encouraged, I thought.

So it was a day full of music and books. Two of my very favorite things. And yet, what I found myself thinking about the rest of the day was more the architecture of the two buildings and all the little details that I saw fresh and new through the kids eyes. It was a neat day.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

The Newest Member of the Family

My sister Melissa and her husband Scott had their first baby yesterday. After 18 and 1/2 hours of labor Madelyn Loran was born. 7 lbs 13 oz and 20 inches long. Lilian and I went to visit today and were just in awe of the sweetness that is little Maddy. Just a beautiful baby! It always amazes me, the depth of feeling I have for my sisters when they have new babies. I'm not sure what it is exactly...but seeing them holding their newborn, exhaustion mixed with that fierce motherly love in their faces. I can't really explain it just right. But it gets me every time.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Favorite Photo Friday by Rebekah

My mom let me do Favorite Friday this week. I picked this picture from girls camp 2008 because I really loved going to girls camp and I loved this hike. We actually had to sit there for probably seven minutes because we had to get a picture of it on everybody's camera. And trust me almost everyone in this picture had a camera. (I'm the one with the red shirt on the front row.)