Thursday, May 31, 2012

The Nimbus 2000

My sister surprised me with a new yoga mat yesterday. It is like the Cadillac of yoga mats; no slipping (oh what a wonderful thing). 

 Behold, the mat...


 I kind of felt like Harry Potter when he was gifted his Nimbus 2000. 

It's awesome. 

Thanks Jennifer!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Rehab Graduation

Elisabeth Elva Sorenson 
is officially 
done with her wean! 

 Peace out, methadone.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Go Fish

On Saturday, Donald and the girls went fishing.  

 And I... 
 >made beds 
>washed dishes 
>did laundry 

That's how I take advantage of having the house to myself.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Piano Practice

Elisabeth and I have both been practicing a lot of piano lately. I'm working on learning a new piece. Maybe I'll share it on here when I have mastered it. 

And maybe Elisabeth will play you a little something too. 

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Another Yoga Post...

Sometimes, personal trajectories change


 (So maybe I can learn to do some ridiculously crazy, almost non-human poses after all!) 

(I have a really good teacher.)

Refer to this post.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Ups and Downs

Life has it's ups...


 and downs.

(But mostly ups.)

Monday, May 21, 2012

Elisabeth's First Word

Lisa's Home Show 
~Episode 12~

 Elisabeth Elva - Age 4

Thursday, May 17, 2012

A Tale of Shunts and Screams

Elisabeth feels like this lately:


She screams and screams and screams some more.

And oh, you should have seen her at the hospital yesterday! She put on quite the show for them! (And I'm quite sure every patient in every corner of the hospital could hear her loud and clear)

First we went and saw Dr. G - Elisabeth's neurosurgeon. He had a little smirk on his face when he saw [heard] Elisabeth come in - a totally different girl than the one he saw last month. That little girl was in severe pain. This little girl is full of life - too much life. Her screams are not ones of pain or anger. She just screams. It's a little bit comical if you can get past the ringing in your ears. 

Anyways, when Dr. G checked her shunt, the setting was off. Again! He was shocked. 

"Do you know how much force it takes to bump the setting on one of these?" he asked. 

Which shows you just how hard Elisabeth bangs her head.  

"I know one thing I'm not going to do - I'm not going to put in a fixed pressure shunt," Dr. G said with a smile - because we all remember how well that went over. 

So Elisabeth got her shunt reprogrammed back to where it's supposed to be and we discussed medicating her with something - anything - to calm her down. At least until her prozac kicks in. 

Then I went over to the neurologist and explained to him about the shunt and the screaming and he decided to start Elisabeth on Risperdal, which is an antipsychotic medication. Let's hope it works. a) Because it's just not safe for Elisabeth's shunt setting to be changing. And b) because I have been awake since 2AM with a screaming, head banging, 4 year old. (and I am a teensy bit tired) 

When I got home from Spokane yesterday afternoon I said to Alexandra and Lorelai,  

"Elisabeth's shunt setting was off again. I just can't believe it." 

"I can," said Alexandra. "She bangs her head all day, it's obvious." 

I guess she's right about that...

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

My Little Ladybug

Today, Elisabeth and I are heading back to our home away from home (a.k.a. Sacred Heart). She has appointments with her neurosurgeon and her neurologist. I am so excited to go see them! 

a) Because I have important medical details to discuss (of course).


b) Because I am anxious for them to see how well she is doing. Last time they saw her she was not doing so hot...remember? 


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

My New Shoes

A month or two back my neighbor came over and was wearing a pair of Josef Seibel shoes. I just about died; they were so classic looking; so European. I was in love. 

So you can imagine my joy when I unwrapped a pair of my own on Mother's Day: 

Of all the shoes I have ever owned, these are my favorite (and I plan to keep them til the day I die). These are the kind of shoes that I see myself wearing on bike rides with Elisabeth. These are the kind of shoes I imagine wearing when we travel the world with our children. These shoes are going to take me places, I say!  


Go snag a pair of your own and you can be twinsies with me (and my neighbor). She's adorable. Trust me, you want to be twinsies with her, for sure.

(I also love the red ones)

Monday, May 14, 2012

Yoga on a Sunday Night

I'm related to a bunch of yogis.

The following series cracks me up. Lorelai had hit Alexandra in the head while falling out of a handstand. Donald was comforting Alexandra. Watch Jennifer in the background...


Friday, May 11, 2012



One of my favorite things to do in the whole-wide-world is snuggle with Elisabeth. It's one of the perks to having a child like her - a forever baby - the snuggles never stop.

 P.S. ~
Tomorrow night I'll be performing in Carmina Burana. It is going to be spectacular performance combining the forces of the Mid-Columbia Mastersingers, Mid-Columbia Ballet, and Mid-Columbia Symphony. Performance at 8:00 on May 12th at the Toyota Center. Tickets available through Ticketmaster. 

Have a happy 
Mother's Day 

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Personal Trajectories

Last night I did a yoga class with my sister, Jennifer. Towards the end, the instructor was having us do some inversions. Inversions? Me? Ha!

So she came over and stuck a few props around me to give extra support.

Then I looked over at Jennifer. She was doing some ridiculously crazy, almost non-human pose. I said, "how are we sisters?" (Jokingly, of course)

I sat there thinking about the difference between me and Jenn. It is huge. She is so far ahead of me yogically, that's it's amusing. But it's not about comparison, is it? And not just yoga - life. If you spend time measuring yourself by another person's abilities or circumstances, you will always fall short of success and happiness. The only race is with yourself. You must be constantly progressing on your own personal trajectory.

 I thought about my own personal trajectory: where I was, and where I am now. I thought about my body last summer and fall. I thought about how I couldn't lay on my stomach; how I physically couldn't stand upright; how I didn't go swimming with the children because I couldn't get in and out of the pool; how I walked with a cane; how excruciating the pain was.

And then I thought about where I was last night. Doing yoga. I can do downward dog, and tree pose, and chair pose, and warrior II, and all these things that even 6 months ago would have been impossible. And when I thought about that, I felt such gratitude for my body and my mind and the ways in which I have progressed personally in the past year. It's huge. Heck - it's monumental.

That's when I looked back at Jennifer doing her ridiculously crazy, almost-not-human pose and realized that life is about being happy where we are at in each individual moment of time. It's about finding that careful balance between contentment and the desire to become better. For we must be happy with who we are and what we are...but we must also carry within us that longing to improve and progress.

And I know that I'll never be what Jennifer is (from a yoga standpoint), but there are other places in life where I can and will do ridiculously crazy, almost non-human poses (so to speak). We are all different. We all have different abilities and disabilities. We all have different likes and dislikes. The world is full of diversity - and that's what makes it all so wonderful.

 [Me, doing Warrior II]

 [Jennifer, doing a ridiculously crazy, almost non-human pose. Enough said.]

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

The Scream - Part 2

For the past few weeks Elisabeth has been screaming. And not just a casual little squeal - but a full-on, ear-piercing, make-you-go-deaf, scream. We blamed it on the wean at first; that it was merely a withdrawal symptom. But it never got better. So the doctors bumped up her methadone dosage and slowed down the wean. She is still screaming. 

Now they realize that this screaming is probably not related to methadone withdrawals at all, but rather a side effect to her new seizure med, Onfi - the one that continues to keep her seizure free. So of course we aren't going to take her off of it. Instead, we started Elisabeth on Prozac a few days ago. Prozac will [hopefully] control the agitation caused by Onfi while not interfering with it's seizure controlling properties. It'll take a week or two for the Prozac to build up in her system. In the meantime, bring some earplugs if you come over for a visit, okay? 


By the way, I just read that Edvard Munch's, 'The Scream', just sold at auction for $120 Million. Perhaps I could sell limited edition prints of these pictures of Elisabeth. I mean, apparently there's a market for this kind of thing... 

p.s. I had to title this post, 'The Scream, Part 2' because I already titled a post, 'The Scream' back in February of 2010. Remember that post?

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

A Plot of Land

This year we decided to build two extra garden boxes alongside our family garden; one for Alexandra and one for Lorelai. We thought it would be a good experience for them to have the responsibility of tending to their own little plot of land.


Our black Labrador, Scarlett O'Hara, is so protective of Elisabeth. 

I can't say the same of our yellow Labrador, Emily (which would explain why she is nowhere to be seen in these pictures).


 Now, grow garden, grow!
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