Thursday, April 29, 2010

I've been editing a shoot I did in San Diego at the beach a couple of weeks ago...

and I stumbled on this random shot--- it made me happy. I'm seeing a theme. I think we need to move closer to the ocean so I can stand and stare. So jealous.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Today, I want to be her.

(Image courtesy of this pretty blog.)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

A warm, blustery, water-balloon-throwing kind of night.

This is Sophia "shaking her booty" for the camera.

Another update on my dad

I got home last night from visiting my dad in the hospital. My sister, Mel and I went together, and stayed with Marybeth. It was both better and worse than I expected. Friday night, we went directly to the hospital from the airport, so it was nearly 10pm when we first saw him. I don't think I ever would have recognized him if I wasn't expecting to see him.

He lifted his arm to wave to us and said something to the nurse so she'd wait to do what she was doing. We went to his bedside and he looked at us and held our hands. Big open, wide eyes on a thin hollow face. I couldn't have imagined him looking this fragile and aged, but I also couldn't imagine him awake and alert after the last time. So I was terrified and relieved all at the same time.

Laying in a bed for 6 weeks, with no food, and undergoing several surgeries and procedures seriously changes a body. After the initial shock of seeing him in this condition, it was sooo wonderful to hear his voice, even if it did sound 20 years older. He was so sweet and tender, so happy to see us and using all of his energy to ask us questions about our life's goals, why we thought the Soviet Union became evil when they removed all deity from their constitution, and how we were doing on our emergency preparedness. Yes, beyond the weak exterior, he was definitely still my daddy.

Saturday was wonderful... he could lift his arms and legs, roll over slowly to relieve the bed sores, and he ATE for the first time. He had a few bites of jello, some water, and a spoonful or two of chicken broth. He asked for some ice cream with strawberries on it, and relished the few bites he could handle. This was a huge improvement from the times Marybeth had tried to get him to get him to eat before, when everything tasted like chemicals and made him nauseous. True to nature, he was showing off for us.

He was awake and talking to us for a lot of the time, (relatively) and only a few things were cooky. I wish I could have recorded the whole thing. I just don't want to lose a moment with him now. At one point his eyes closed for a minute, then he opened them and said, with a straight face, "I just got up---- walked out of here and went shopping. If I go back out, anybody want anything?" That time he realized it was a dream.

After Marybeth's email last week about his brain function, the doctors put a tube in his belly to drain it and were able to rid his body of a lot of septic fluid. It looks like his colon has developed another tiny hole, one they hope will heal on it's own. The vast improvement in his behavior was attributed to getting rid of that fluid.

We went to dinner that night upon leaving the hospital, and celebrated Melisa, Marybeth, and my birthdays... they're all close. We felt optimistic. Here's an iphone shot of Mel and I--- I wish we had you in one, Marybeth!

When we went back to the hospital the next day, it was pretty clear, early on that things were not quite as good as they were Saturday. He started out by asking the nurse for a list of his meds so he could go home. We thought he was being funny, since the day before, he would have raised his eyebrows a few times and shot a glance at one of us... but this time he was serious. He was so disappointed when he realized we couldn't take him home. My heart broke.

He still made us laugh a ton and had lots of lucid moments.... but he had taken a step back. He was feverish, and SO tired. Just before we had to leave to the airport, he was shivering, covered in two blankets, drifting off to sleep. He opened up his eyes and looked at Mel and me, "it's time for you beautiful people to go now... g'night" and then he attempted to do what he used to do, and smooched the air a few times in front of him as if he was kissing us.... only they were silent, as his lips barely touched.

We're waiting for an update now. They're doing some blood tests and have more proactively drained his belly again. We're hoping for some signs of improvement.

Now I feel an aching for two men. I desperately miss this fragile, sweet, old dad in his hospital bed. I hate that he's there being poked and bothered all hours of SOO many days in a row. And I just wish there was a way to relieve him. I cannot imagine living through that.

And then I see pictures like this one and I miss my big, strong, loud, opinionated, controversial, HAPPY dad. I miss the REAL dog bark he did any time he attended one of my track meets or volleyball games to let us know he was there. It didn't matter if he were amongst a thousand high school students.... you couldn't miss it.

I'm feeling incredibly impatient. I just want him to heal. I want him to be able to be with his family and enjoy fresh air, and sunshine, and food, and talk radio, and conversation, and nascar. I want him to be able to feel some joy so he'll remember why he should keep fighting this awful battle.

Thank you for caring about something so personal to me and my family while I use my blog for our family records, and for keeping my dad in your prayers.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Guess what Sophia did on Saturday?

yup. Can you believe it? I've never broken anything--- Ross has never broken anything... I didn't even know how they put on a cast. I don't know what I imagined.... some kind of molding or something... I thought it would be more traumatic. Just a nice smooth wrap out of magical fiberglass. Pretty cool.

But she LOVES it. Especially when she learned that not only can she draw on it, but she got to pick the color. She decided purple was her favorite color. As of then. News to me...

Luckily I wasn't there when it happened.... I think it may have been more traumatic for me than her. I was in San Diego for a shoot, and Ross took the girls to Orange County for my nephew's birthday party. Within like five minutes of arriving to the park, she slipped through the bars and hooked her elbow on the way down, fracturing it right down the middle. Luckily the alignment wasn't off--- so it was a simple quick cast.

Four weeks to go, and I think it might be a sad day for her. She's a rock star. "Knock on it, it feels like a rock--". Not sure she's going to want to part with it.

Ok and I will confess for my record's sake, that she stayed with Ross all day Saturday, and we stayed home from church on Sunday to let her rest--- nope, didn't go straight to the hospital. She seemed to be improving. :/

On Sunday, I realized that she couldn't walk or move an inch for fear of the pain. She lay in one spot, ate a pb sandwich off of her belly laying flat, and had me bring her a nice full sippy of ice water. One who's lid I did not properly secure. And who's contents dumped all over my poor, broken girl. She bawled, catching her breath from the flood of freezing cold water, begging me to take off her soaked shirt, but unable to move a finger of her right arm, I saw no other choice-I had to cut it off in pieces. Hence my large, gapey shirt in the sling photo--- I learned my lesson....

Finally Monday morning I swept her off to the pediatrician and he took one look at the swelling-- "I'd be shocked if it wasn't fractured"--- off to the orthopedic and the rest is history.

Now her worst frustration is that it's harder to color in the lines, and sometimes her S's are backwards when she writes her name with her left hand. I can tell it's confusing to her. But the magnificent purple trophy on her arm makes it all worth it.

She's a trooper.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

An update on my dad

This is obviously an old, healthy picture of my dad-- before this whole mess started.)

I've been feeling pretty good--- like once he had that scary emergency surgery... things were looking up. He seemed to be a little better each day. Maybe a very LITTLE--- but better nonetheless. He was moved out of the ICU several days ago and into a normal hospital room which was very exciting news. He still needed daily dialysis and some other assistance, but the tube was out of his throat and he was a little more cognoscente each day. He had a hard time talking since his throat and mouth were so worked from a month of being intubated, but I got to talk to him on the phone once and at least tell him how much I love him. Then I got a message from him the other day with a groggy "I love you so much". I've been SO looking forward to heading out there this weekend with Melisa to see him--- and feeling confident that he'd be pretty aware during his waking hours.

And then last night I got this email from Mary Beth:

"Hello friends and family,

I am asking for some special prayers for Randy tonight. He is struggling, I can see the difference the last
two days...He is becoming very confused and is having difficulty understanding where he is and what is happening to him.

His weakened condition is wearing on him.........It is when the patient has been in the hospital
for long period of time and they have had a tremendous amount of pain to contend with, and lack of sleep and true

I am normally very optimistic, but I am concerned. The nurses and doctors are saying that it could be a bacteria
that is in the blood stream affecting his brain function. They did blood tests today and they will have more answers

The one good thing they did late last night to help his anemia and weakness, was a blood transfusion. I was told
that should have improved his energy level......

I will report to you as soon as I learn more tomorrow...

Lillie and Melissa will be coming this weekend and I think that will have a positive effect on his emotional

I don't have everyone email so please pass this message on.

Thank you, we love you all,

Mary Beth"

So this is a little scary. Every time things start looking better, the blow is extra hard when he takes a few steps back. And thinking that his brain could be affected to any degree is really really scary. I don't feel prepared anymore.

I know this blog is a place my extended family checks in from time to time... so I thought I'd pass it on right here. Last night I was painfully reminded that we are certainly not out of the woods yet and he can use all of the prayers he can get.

I was also thinking that if he gets past this, and he is aware and alert when I'm there, I'd really love to bring something for him that he can look at or I can read to him or something.... SO--- for all of you friends and family who know or knew him in the past, if you'd like to give him just a few words of encouragement or just a "hello--- get better!", anything like that, please leave a comment here below, or send me an email at lillie_biesinger at yahoo dot com and I'll be compiling them all before I take off on Friday.

Thanks for all of your prayers and support. I turn 29 next month, I'm not ready for my parents to get sick like this. It's way too soon. And it's scary stuff. Puts a lot of things into perspective.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Brooke's going to be on GLEE!

My sister-in-law, Brooke is a dancer and (even after having two kids) dances for a company that does stilt dancing. We've watched her perform once in LA several years ago and it was amazing. Part of the team was on America's Got Talent, the first season---- and now they were hired to perform on Glee! I think they play a competing cheer squad, which means that Brooke, 32-year-old-hot-mama-of-two plays a 17-year-old.

NICE, Brooke.

Oh.... and in case you don't know Brooke, here she is. We did some head shots at Christmas time for this very audition. Not taking any credit or anything.... I'm just saying.....

So WATCH. It's the one with Madonna. And if you're wondering what the heck stilt-dancing is, watch. She has no idea if, or how much she'll be on after it's been edited and everything. But on this clip, she's front and left, on stilts... the one with the long pony tail. So cross your fingers!

And watch.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Shots at 4 and a half are NOT fun.

But apparently the eye exam is worse. We had Sophia's kindergarten check up yesterday... first trip to the doctor for her in... a while. I guess we never went for her 3 or 4 year old check up. It's one of those things I'm really bad at. It's like I'm still a kid. If the doctor doesn't call me and tell me I'm supposed to come in, I assume we're fine. Well apparently they stop calling after a year or so.

I guess you're supposed to have it down by then and they stop holding your hand. What?

We were all prepped for the shots and while she wasn't thrilled about it, she knew it was going to win her a "BIG lolli-pop, like the kind from Disneyland", and she said she would be brave.

On the way in she told said, "but I might be shy with the doctor"....

No biggie--- you don't have to talk to him if you don't want. He's not that friendly anyway.

But it starts with the eye exam where I'm supposed to cover one eye and she's supposed to say what she sees on the chart. PURE panic. My outgoing, vivacious little girl becomes PAINFULLY shy and her bottom lip is quivering in fear. She won't do it. All she wants to do is nestle her little four and a half year-old face as far as she can into my neck and away from this place. The nurse is kind of grumpy and abrupt and it's not helping. Now they think she's blind. And I'm in a panic because this is the LAST day to get the appt. in before the first day of registration and I don't want to end up with afternoon kinder.

Then she has to get THREE shots instead of one, because her mom forgot that having a family means you're supposed to grow up and go to the doctor when you're supposed to and not when your mom says you have to. And the doctor had to play catch up.

Then Albertsons only sold little boring tootsie pops. Not BIG disneyland lollipops.

All in all, it was WAY rougher than I expected.... but we made it through. And after seeing herself on the camera making the first funny face on accident... she forgot about all of it and remembered how cool it is to stretch your face.

Happy Saturday.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

The "wedding" shoot at Blue Lily's workshop

These poor people.... they let all eight of us scurry around, shoving cameras in their face at the same time, wondering who to take direction from... and still turned out THIS beautiful. Nice job on the models Wendy.

I think if I could do my wedding over again, I'd wear one of those tiny vintage veil/hat bits.

The shots I got from the family session we did are over on my photo blog. We did some studio lighting too that was so fun and different.... I'll be posting it soon.... if you're into that sort of thing.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Whether I like it or not, I guess I'm converted

I'm still adjusting to some of the differences about my iMac, and sometimes I miss the ease of my little PC laptop that I obviously knew well. But then I'm forced to open up the laptop during my bluelily workshop (if you click on this link, just know that I'm aware that I'm the only girl that can't laugh and still look like a girl, with only one chin, at the same time) and I realize, my fingers have adjusted and they keep stumbling over each other in search of the command key, my EYES have certainly adjusted and my screen is so dull I can't even stand looking at my photos on it, my mind has adjusted and I'm annoyed that I can't drag my folder, hover over another 'till it opens etc.... and now I'm back home and realizing just what a beauty this new piece of technology is. I'm getting NEARER to the end of that learning curve.... and feeling good...

and plus, what was I to do before, if ever I wondered what I look like eating a bagel sandwich for lunch--- psh---- thank you photo-booth--- viola.

Did anyone else read that "vie-oh-la" until like last year? I did.

Inserted days later--- my brother-in-law just informed me that it's spelled "voila" not "viola".... I don't even know what to say about that one. It's funny when you make fun of yourself, but not when you don't even see the real joke. One level dumber. How sad.

SOOO---- when my blackberry died, it seemed a logical decision to just go all the way and get an iphone!! Now I feel like I've secured myself in this generation x (or whatever one I'm technically a part of... generations are so confusing to me. Is there a certain age at which you fall in the one above or the one below? What about those weird families that have one kid, and then another like 15 years later. Are those siblings in different generations? I'm sure there's a mom and daughter somewhere with the same gap? Can they be in the SAME generation? So confusing....but I digress)..

I am a full fledged member of the apple family. And I LOVE my fun new phone! I'm not ready to start a blog over it or anything. I must admit I think my iphone is dropping calls here and there which has never really happened to me before and is VERY annoying. But it makes up for it in so many ways... and not just because it's shiny and colorful and has a sleek turquoise cover.

The fact that I don't have to talk to my phone lady every time I want to hear my voicemail, or wait for her to give me the option to erase since I always forget what number does what--- is very nice. Look at the voicemail screen, select the person who's voicemail you WANT to listen to.. erase with a touch of the screen. Nice.

And I can check my favorite blogs when I get bored doing abs at the gym--- ( I really did that this morning--- sometimes I think as long as I'm spending TIME inside it's four walls, the gym should be working it's magic....)

too much to ask?....

Happy hump day.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The last of Nana and Papa's house

Sophia gets stars in her eyes when she's with nana. I'm always amazed by it, since she doesn't really get THAT much time with her. She's a busy, parallegal, nana-of-19 type nana. I feel like Sophia can just really feel that she's MY mommy. And she has this instant, tender bond... like she trusts her implicitly. And it helps that she's like the funnest, happiest woman you've ever met.

I asked her the other day in the car if she missed Nana and Papa.

"Yeah--- I miss them a lot. I LOVE nana and papa."

Why do you love your nana?

I love her because she dances with me, and she makes me white toast, and she gives me a BIG chocolate popsicle, and she lets me watch cartoons in her bed with her....

Why do you love papa?

Because Papa's CRAZY. And that's only one thing. Let's talk about nana again.

She loves you too Kirk. :) That lady's some serious competition.

Monday, April 12, 2010

A child's prayer

Just one from a recent shoot-- it makes me love the sunshine, even though I'm usually cursing it out here. I love that sunny haze in a photo.

Sophia says the prayer every night before we go to bed, she won't let anyone else have a turn any more. And last night I thought-- I think this deserves a note on my blog---

Her prayer goes something like this:

"We're thankful for our toys, we love jumping on the trampoline, we love eating ice cream, we love snuggling on the couch with the whole family, we're thankful that Grandpa Randy is getting better, and healing, and his body is getting stronger. We're thankful that we'll sleep well. And we're thankful that daddy will get home safe."

I don't know where she learned it, I didn't learn it until I was selling timeshares, but she's totally got the assumptive close down. "Heavenly Father, thank you for making my Grandpa Randy all better."

Would you let her down if she said it like that?

At first I thought I'd better teach her the other elements of prayer, to ask for blessings.... ASK that her daddy get home safe, seeing as it hasn't happened yet. But now I think she's on to something.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

More of the beach at Easter...

Met for a picnic at the beach with Mom and Kirk, and Ian and his boys.... there are few things as good for my soul as the ocean. Dramatic, I know. But really--- I felt like it cleared parts of my mind I forgot I had in there.

I was laying flat most of the time buried in Ross' clothes, trying to avoid the freezing cold breeze--- and Sophia insisted on getting in her suit to romp around in the frigid water. She's tough.
One of my favorite self-portraits. You can almost tell just how good my body looks in my stretchy target skirt with Ross' over sized fleece. Did I mention it was FREEZING. I remind myself of Rosario from "Will and Grace". What if the head to body ratio was for reals? Cuuuuute.

I just attended a photography workshop in AZ this weekend by BLUE LILY--- my brain is FILLED to the brim (is it brim or rim? suddenly they both sound right.... or wrong?) with new information and skeeeeels. I can't wait to unleash. These two were some of the most endearing, loveable, down-to-earth people I've met. I loved them. No I still love them. I'm worried I'm going to weird them out now because I think we're really REALLY friends. They were humble yet brilliant--- open books--- so happy to share the wealth of knowledge they've acquired. I feel like I've got a whole new bag of tricks. Thank you Whitacres! I can't wait to post some stuff from the workshop. But my behind is BEhind.

Posted a new engagement shoot I did over on the photo-blog. And while it's not long and flowy, I think I found myself a "field" in this barren desert.

Thursday, April 08, 2010

The beginning of part 2

Easter was spent in San Diego with my mom and Kirk. San Diego usually means a ridiculous amount of photos.... this time was no exception. I'm heading out of town and have no time... but knew I'd feel better about myself if I scratched the surface.

I'll leave my house a mess, my hair unwashed, my husband with no food for the weekend--- but I will be one step closer to having Easter blogged, and that makes me feel a sense of accomplishment. What is our world coming to?

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Easter Part 1... a little behind schedule...

The Preschool Party--- AND Tanner's first day of school. It was exciting... despite her expression in this first photo...

Notice how she keeps her mouth closed so often... she's done it since she was a baby. My mom always said she was harder to get a smile out of than most of her grand kids. She's an easy smile now, but still often that closed mouth beauty. I LOVE it... because it's something I've never been able to do.... if I try for a subtle closed mouth smile, I look like my teeth are too big to squeeze behind my thin lips. Totally weird. I'll live vicariously.

Reese slept in rollers..... could she be any cuter? She's as old as Sophia, as tall as Mila, and smarter than me. I want to put her in my pocket.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Out of my "Inspiration" folder

1. I think that's a little like what my heaven will look like. It's so peaceful and feminine and happy and light. I want the rug-- but I'm pretty sure I'd have to sell one of my kids for it. Rugs are EX.... pensive aren't they?

2. This was my favorite nursery... until I saw number 4. I was THIS close to painting my crib yellow. (if you could see how close my fingers are as I say that, you would know that I wasn't that close, it takes me a LONG time to get a project done. I'm not that ambitious. All of those rungs? (is that the right word??) Maybe for the next babe.

3. One of the many images I saved that made me want my zebra ottoman... makes me think I might want to use it in my living room instead. A bit nicer than my 89 dollar Walmart one. Unfortunately I can tell.

4. Uhhh.... makes me want a baby NOW. This would be my heaven if I slept in a crib.

5. I have a tall black mirror that I'm not loving lately.... I thought it was foolish to think I could paint it white-- since it's too simple a solution and I do it too often.... until I saw this photo. Mine doesn't have that lovely detail. But still.... I'm THIS close. ;)

6. Also in my heaven, (at least this month) everything upholstered would have tufts. I love tufts. I could eat them. So much texture and pattern and yet none at all....?? Did that make sense?

I wish I was organized enough to remember where I stole these images from. Sorry design bloggers--- but I check you often, if it's any consolation. Thank you for your eye candy-- and for giving me an insatiable desire to decorate my house. My husband thanks you too. Not.

Yup, I still say NOT. And Sike.

Monday, April 05, 2010

Baby Bode

This is Bode. He's the newest addition to my photoblog.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

In Honor of Easter...

I wanted to share a video that I love about our Savior, Jesus Christ.

We got to watch conference this weekend with my parents and I feel so uplifted, and rejuvenated. I also feel so aware of ALL of the ways I need and want to improve myself as a mother, wife, daughter, friend.... all of it. There's always just so many ways to be better aren't there? We drove the two and a half hours home from San Diego and I felt like I couldn't stop listing all of the attributes of the future, new-and-improved ME. It's just hit me like a ton of bricks lately, that the time is NOW. That Sophia is 4 and that the habits we are forming now will have a place in her memory forever. We put off having official Family Night's and family scripture study for so long thinking that she was just too young (or using that as an excuse I should say)... and now I feel like the time is getting away from me-- -and of course life just gets busier and busier, so if the habits aren't formed now, it's just going to get harder!

I'm resolving here on my blog, (because this is the only place I write-- hence the subjects being possibly too private at times) to be a better mom. To STUDY and not just read my scriptures. To really understand the stories and lessons laced throughout them, enough to teach my children all about them. I resolve to do official Family Nights, and read to them from the Book of Mormon regularly, even though it will sound like gibberish for years. I resolve to utilize every tender teaching moment I see to share my testimony with my girls so that they will have no doubts about what my foundation is built on as they grow and develop their own testimonies -- so that they will KNOW their Savior and try to be like him-- so that they will show kindness, compassion, and love to those around them. I'm going to do more. Starting now.

Hope you had a Happy Easter.