Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Green Shoes

Well look at that...new shoes. And no, I don't take photos while I'm driving - only at stop lights.

So, the new shoes are to prove that I'm keeping up with my New Years Resolution to step it up in the wardrobe department. You see, I don't really enjoy shopping. Actually, I dread shopping...so this is a big deal for me.

But I'm doing well, just shopping away! (Even if I do secretly wish I could just wear a uniform or something every day and not have to think about things like fashion...)

Friday, January 27, 2012


I had full intentions of posting a video of Elisabeth in her gait trainer today...but when I arrived at her school to get said footage I found her rather out of sorts. I noticed a big tear just about to roll out of the corner of her eye as she snuggled in her nurse's arms. My little Queen Elisabeth was not feeling well; needless to say, there was no gait trainer yesterday.

But all is not lost. I did manage to get a video of Alexandra playing 'Waltz' on her guitar. She has had four lessons now. (And might I say that I think classical guitar is one of the most beautiful sounds in the history of sounds. And lucky me that Alexandra decided to take up classical guitar.)

P.S. I love her soft little 'ciao' at the end.

P.P.S. If you are in the mood for a little Shostakovitch, the Mid-Columbia Symphony will be performing his 5th symphony this Sunday afternoon at the Tri-Cities Convention Center, 3PM. See you there!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Chopping Block


~Sorenson Edition~

We've been kind of obsessed with the show Chopped lately. Are you? Don't you just love it?! And if you haven't seen it....what are you waiting for!?

Anyways, a few days back the girls (plus best friend Avery) decided to put together their own version of the show. They carefully cut, pasted, and created some paper-culinary delights.

And me? Well, I was the judge. (Not fun: telling one of three best friends that they had been chopped!)

Here are their masterpieces...

~Appetizer Course~


Ribs with Lettuce and Croutons


Mini Steaks


Pineapple, cumquats, sushi and ham

~The Main Course~


Quiche and a Strawberry


Avogobble Sandwich with Macaroni and Hotdogs


Burrito with Strawberries and Butternut Squash



Strawberry Shortcake, Cinnamon Bread & Vanilla Cream


Seven-layer Dessert w/ Muffins, Blueberries & Strawberries


Sparkle Cake w/ Lettuce, a Strawberry & a Pea

The chefs in the 'kitchen':

So...who would you have chosen as the Chopped Champion???

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Gait Trainer

Now that Elisabeth has perfectly formed feet and a shiny new pair of braces, it's time to get her using those legs.

Yesterday, I popped by her school in time to watch her in physical therapy. They put her into the gait trainer - which is kind of like a walker for big kids.

She was not so fond of the idea at first...

...but in the end she succumbed to this inevitable fate.

And then...she realized,
"wait a minute, there might just be something to this...".

At that point I had to leave, but word around the campfire is that Elisabeth propelled herself 25 feet!

25 feet!!!!

Hot Diggity Dog!

Her nurse said she was almost in tears (the nurse, not Elisabeth). So I'm going to stop by school again on Thursday in hopes of video footage, so stay tuned!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Aunt Jennifer's House

Everyone loves a visit to Aunt Jenn's...

It's often like taking a little trip around the world.
The girls love to see [play with] souvenirs from her travels!

Monday, January 23, 2012


I didn't leave the house last week (until Sat Morn.). Well, maybe that's not technically true...I did go outside and down around the corner to go sledding with Donald and the girls. It was fun (and the whole while I kept thinking about my spine and how thankful I am that I can do things like go sledding).

Then Donald decided to take the girls to a bigger hill...to do some real sledding. I opted out of that trip; Elisabeth and I stayed at home all cozy by the fire. When they returned Lorelai's face was a bruised/scratched up mess (sledding can be dangerous - especially when three people pile onto the same sled).

Anyways, life gets back to normal today. Everyone is healthy again (we had the flu last week, remember?), school's back in session, and Donald's back at work. Good thing too, because I have something like 20 loads of laundry to do...and it seems like I just can't get on top of the laundry when everyone is home; as soon as I finish one load I turn around and there's another pile of wet, snowy clothes. Such is life.

Sledding down the little hill:


[Alexandra and Lorelai]

Friday, January 20, 2012

The Penny Farthing Shoppe

Exciting Day! Exciting Day!

If you have been to our home than you know that Donald and I have a love of books - there are piles of books everywhere. They are beautiful; they are educational; they encourage the imagination.

Now we have decided to share our love of books with the world: We are proud to be opening up an online book shop - featuring beautifully-bundled vintage and antique books.

Our collections have been carefully selected - some according to color, some according to theme. These sets will be sure to add an atmosphere of learning to any home - while adding a touch of beauty as well.

So please click here to go visit our shop. And if you feel so inclined, purchase a set or two.

(Be sure to check the shop frequently for new additions!)

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Snow Day

School is cancelled for the children. Work is cancelled for Donald.

Ladies and gentlemen, it is officially a snow day and us Sorenson's are going to spend it all cozied up indoors. I'm sure we'll watch an episode or two of Chopped....and Lorelai and I have a date to clean her bedroom....and Alexandra, well she'll probably keep herself busy the whole day through making origami (her latest fascination).

Happy Snow Day to you!

p.s. Come back tomorrow and see the project Donald and I have been working on!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

A Birthday Concert

Happy Birthday to my niece, Katya!

(Alexandra has had three guitar lessons now, not bad, huh?)

(Do you love that Lorelai is wearing a swimsuit on the very day that school was cancelled due to snow?)

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Under the Weather

We're sick, the whole lot of us (minus Lorelai...for now). And Elisabeth wanted to upstage us all, so she's been throwing violent seizures into the mix this morning as well.

So do yourself a favor and stay far, far away from our house, okay? Because trust me, you don't want this.

On a happier note, it's better to be sick now than two weeks from now, right?

On another happy note, Donald and I were hoping to lose a few pounds before our Hawaiian vacation. And this is sure to do the trick.

Monday, January 16, 2012

A Story to Tell

Donald and have I been working on a project that has us sorting through books, lots and lots of books.

It was while sorting through said books that I noticed some papers neatly tucked away within one of them...

...a math final from 1948.

And some homework...that apparently never got turned in.

[See that date? May 29, 1948]

Donald and I were fascinated by it; it felt like we had stumbled upon a time capsule. We wondered who he was, who he became, where he was now.

So we did some research and discovered that Dale passed away just over 4 years ago. He was born in 1929 and lived in and throughout the region where we currently reside. He was an agricultural engineer and went on to sell real estate after retiring.

It's so interesting how life just passes by. At one point of time this man was in his prime, with his whole life ahead of him...and now it's gone. Done.

It makes me think about the life I'm living; how it's steadily ticking by. There are times when it seems to be standing still; when I'm going through the same routines of laundry and feeding tubes and driving children to and from ballet class. But these moments aren't going to last, they never do. So this paper - this homework - was a reminder to enjoy it all, to live in the moment, and to cherish the memories that I'm making.

And perhaps someday, some 60+ years from now, someone will stumble upon something that belonged to me. And maybe, just maybe, they will wonder who I was and about the life I lived.

And I hope when that day comes, that there's a story to tell.

Friday, January 13, 2012

A Post about Lorelai (my crafty one)

[Photograph of Lorelai, taken this past summer by Charlene Hardy Photography]

Lorelai is soooo excited about Valentine's Day, probably because she is my crafty one. If she could, Lorelai would sit at her little table all day long and create things. So Valentine's Day - while still a month away - is calling her name.

Yesterday after school she called Donald to see if he would take her out to buy Valentine supplies when he got home from work. He agreed, but told her to have her list ready so as to save time.

So Lorelai dictated her list to me and I carefully wrote it down. It went like this:
  • colored tissue paper
  • colored paper plates
  • big black fuzzies
  • small black fuzzies
  • glitter
  • pipe cleaners
  • a hamster ball
  • doilies
  • construction paper
  • glue
  • black marker pens

Donald was a good sport. I think they came home with most of those things - minus all those black fuzzies and the hamster ball. And already Lorelai's bedroom floor is covered in scraps of pink and red and white - remnants of Valentine's to come.

p.s. Donald and I are working on a new project that I am soooo excited about. It'll probably be ready to go by Monday and I can tell you all about it!


Thursday, January 12, 2012

Hawaii Here We Come

A box arrived in the mail from my mom. She said that it was kind of a joke for me and Donald...but that the girls would love it too.

We opened it to find this:

Ken and Barbie - the Hawaii Here We Come edition.

Hawaii here we come is right - 3 weeks from today in fact.

(Thanks Mom! We got a good laugh out of it!)

(And Libbie, did you read that? 3 weeks! Shall we pack our own beach towels? Or do you have some we can borrow? :)

p.s. I love how everyone is lined up in that picture. I'm just missing Queen Elisabeth - who was off at school still.

p.p.s Alexandra plays that guitar non-stop. I think she found her calling in life.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012


Yellow seems to be my color-of-the-moment...hence the new yellow place mats:

And I may have just purchased a new yellow chair too, but I need to wait [patiently] until mid-February for it to arrive. Oh, it's just divine, I'm so excited!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

A Lesson on Shunts

~Lisa's Home Show~
Episode 9

Friday, January 6, 2012

All Braced Up!

Elisabeth received her leg braces yesterday (more commonly known as AFO's - or ankle-foot orthoses). They were supposed to arrive over a week ago, but you know how the holidays seem to slow everything down. But at long last they are here and we are so excited!

Elisabeth will wear them most of the day (she has different, softer braces that she wears at night). They will ensure that her feet don't start slipping back into their old ways and will provide her the extra stability and support she needs to start bearing some weight on her legs.

[The final fitting.]

[These pictures just don't do those AFO's justice - they have beautiful butterflies all over them. I'll have to see if I can snap some better photos.]

In other news, we are taking Elisabeth to Spokane today (or as Donald likes to say, Spokanistan). She's been a bit on the fussy side lately (the last time she acted like this it turned out that her shunt setting had been bumped to the wrong place - due to her head banging, no doubt). So we just need to rule out that her behavioral changes might be the trusty ol' shunt. Too bad it's a two hour drive to the neurosurgeon's office to get it checked. Oh well, better safe than sorry.

Speaking of the neurosurgeon, remember a few weeks ago when I was given the go-ahead from Dr. G to start moving normal again? Well, I started going out walking this week. At first I could really feel it in my back - it just felt a little...fragile. But last night I walked two miles and felt fantastic. And, guess what else!? Tomorrow is my first restorative yoga class over at Yoga Hut. I am so excited! Yes sirree...I am going to get this body of mine into shape. (Did I ever tell you that I tried doing a sit-up last week and couldn't even lift my back off the floor? Not doing anything for 12 weeks will do that to you I guess. Actually, it's probably a combination of being weak and figuring out how to move again.)

Enough rambling.

Off to Spokanistan!

Thursday, January 5, 2012


Thank goodness for indoor swimming pools.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


You have got to check out this bottle of soda that Donald brought home. The entire thing mocks old Soviet propaganda slogans - it's one of the funniest things I have every seen. And of course I immediately thought of my sister Kristin and her husband Matt who both served missions for our church in Russia. (Kristin and Matt, this is for you!)

"Surprisingly satisfying simple Soviet style soda"

"A party in every bottle" and on the back side, "Join the party"

"A taste worth standing in line for" and "Get hammered and sickled" and "Drink comrade! Drink! It's this or the gulag"

"Beware the repressed communist party animal who is really a proletarian in denial masquerading as a bourgeois cold war monger"
"Our 5-year plan: Drink a bottle a day for five years and become a Hero of Socialist Flavor"

Ha ha ha!!!

Who would even think to make such a thing?
I don't know - but I'm glad they did!
Ha ha!!
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