Category Archives: munro’s

Aiden’s Ambulance Adventure

(Yes, I’m playing MAJOR catch-up on posts!  You’ll just have to live with it!)

On March 26th at 4:13pm, I was just settling into a meeting for work when I receive this text from Julia….

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Not quite the text I was expecting to receive! 

I quickly excused myself from the meeting and hightailed it to the hospital about 45 minutes away from work.  I made amazing time considering it was rush hour in Seattle, I made it to the hospital just shortly after the ambulance did (they too had a long drive!). 

Apparently Aiden was doing tricks off the bar on the swing set when he dropped on his head. 

After several tests it was determined he was fine…sore…but would be okay!  I of course, was all posed and ready to take some photos!

         aidenfam 

          coriconnor & aiden

There’s never a dull moment when you are around kids!

Wild Walls Climbing Gym in Spokane, WA

WW LogoLast month I went with Julia, Kim and their families to Spokane for a post-Christmas getaway.  I got the rest of the vacation up on the blog last month, this post just kept getting pushed farther and farther down the pipeline.  Figured I should get it written and posted before it was to late!

On the last day of our vacation, after we sucked the energy out of the kids in the hotel swimming pool, we had a big party at Wild Walls Climbing Gym in Spokane.  WHAT A FUN PLACE!!  They had wall to wall climbing walls (ha-ha yes, pun intended!) and all the kids in the party were able to climb to their hearts content.

Of Julia’s kids, it was the 5 year old GIRLS who LOVED climbing and not her 8-year-old boys!  It was very funny considering I figured it would be the opposite!

Those girls are CRAZY brave!  They were scaling the walls with no problem.  Their only real downfall was the lack of security to let go and repel back down to the bottom.  Granted they were climbing like 2+ stories up and you didn’t see me up in the harness! 

No thank-you, I’m happy with my feet on the ground and camera in hand!

If you live in or will be visiting Spokane with slightly older kids (5+), I would HIGHLY recommend Wild Walls!  It’s a great experience, beautiful facility and very nice and knowledgeable staff!  All in all a FUN and different way to get out and do something new!

If you aren’t in the area you should check and see if there is a climbing wall near you!

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Curious what else we did in Spokane?  Check out the rest of our vacation adventure HERE!

This post was 100% my opinion.  I didn’t receive any compensation for sharing my opinion and/or writing a review.

Goodbyes

Almost a year ago, I was faced with a high probability, sad, “good bye”. 

A good bye, that I couldn’t believe I may have to be facing.  She is to young to die.  How am I supposed to go on with life without her?

Those days, while they seem so long ago, in retrospect they seem like just yesterday.

Nine months ago, my families life was turned upside and shook dramatically. 

Nine months ago, my younger sister was diagnosed with Stage 4 Incurable Metastatic Carcinoid Cancer.

Nine months ago, my life changed.

Now nearly a year later, we’re getting ready to say good-bye to Kelly, but not in the way we once feared.  We will be saying good-bye to her for five months, while she lives out her life long dream of attending school in France.

A year ago, we didn’t know if we would have Kelly with us, a year from now.  And yet now, a year later, she has been give the green light by her oncologist to study abroad.  How amazing is that?

As I watch her begin to prepare for this huge milestone in her life, I’m constantly sent back to that night when her diagnosis became a reality.  A night that I replay over and over again in my head, often still daily. 

They say when you are given traumatic news you remember EVERYTHING about the moment and a year later I can still remember it like it was yesterday.  I have yet to share how I found out, because I wasn’t ready yet to talk about it.  Like everything else, time heals all – not to mention Kelly being so strong has really helped me finally feel ready to share that night on my blog.

My side of the story…..

I was in out of town and visiting Arizona.  For days my mom had been pestering me asking “when are you coming home.”  I knew she was going to freak, when I told her how long I would be gone, because I was missing school during my final quarter, so I kept putting it off.  “I’ll look tomorrow….”

Well, after nearly a week of “I’ll look tomorrow,” I found out why she was so inquisitive about when I would be returning home.  She had some really big news to share and wanted to tell me in person – not over the phone, nearly 1,500 miles away.

It was Easter 2012 Night.

photoI had spent Easter in the sun lounging by the pool and enjoying the HOT weather of Arizona.  Life was good.  I was doing my favorite thing in the world, sunbathing in the sun!  I even took the picture to the left….Everything was perfect.

That night after all the kids had gone to bed, I was sitting at the kitchen table working on homework (remember I was missing school to go on this vacation), Julia had also gone to bed and Alec and his parents were watching TV.  My phone lit up and it was my mom calling.

I hadn’t talked to her yet that day, so assumed she was calling to wish me a Happy Easter.  I happily answered the phone and excused myself to talk to my mom.  It was still warm out and I went out to the front patio to talk.

As soon as I answered the phone, I heard the uncertainty in my mom’s voice.  It immediately sent me into a state of panic.  I knew something was wrong. 

I still remember my body temperature shooting up and my heart racing – this was before any words had ever come out of her voice.

Then I hear her say, “Cori, do you want to know why I’ve been so persistent about finding out when you come home?”

Immediately running through my head was the knowledge that I was about to receive life changing news.  My perfect vacation was about to be clouded. 

My response to her was, “No, not really …. do I need to go take an anxiety pill before we start?”

Yes, I told my mom I didn’t want to know and was ready to medicate myself. 

My initial thought was my parents were getting a divorce.  Why I thought that I don’t know.  Them getting a divorce would be a huge shocker, because they are so happy.  But, that was where my mind went.  It was the only thing that seemed possible.  Never once did I thought the “C” word was going to come out of her mouth.

All I remember at that point was ….. Kelly ….. Cancer ….Unsure ….Big Appointment on Tuesday to learn more.

My head was spinning, my heart was racing and tears were flowing.

At this point, I sat down on the lawn chairs on the patio.  Asking every question imaginable and to my horror, she had no answers.

  • We didn’t know what kind of cancer
  • We didn’t know what stage of cancer it was
  • We didn’t know if it was life threatening
  • We didn’t know if she would need chemotherapy.  Or radiation.  Or surgery.

We didn’t know anything.

At this point, I’m sure she knew I was losing it and being 1,500 miles away there was nothing she could do to help.  She asked me to go get Julia so she could talk to her.  Shakily I set my phone down, went in the house and woke Julia up.

This time it was my turn to tell someone about the cancer and again all I remember was telling her ….. Kelly ….. Cancer ….Unsure ….Big Appointment on Tuesday to learn more.

Julia shot up and joined me outside.  She and my mom talked for a long time.

It then came down to my understanding that all our questions would be answered at the big appointment on Tuesday.  My mom wanted me to have the opportunity to attend if I wanted to.  After talking and some thought, I decided I didn’t want to be there for the meeting, in fact I wasn’t ready to go home.  My hope was the craziness of vacation would keep my mind off of all the unknowns.

After we hung up it was time to go inside and again tell people ….. Kelly ….. Cancer ….Unsure ….Big Appointment on Tuesday to learn more.  However, this time I had Julia who was able to fill in some of the blanks.

The next two days we kept busy.  Everyone was wonderful about trying to keep me distracted, which was exactly what I needed.  The distraction included a trip to an Ostrich Farm….bet you’ve never been there before!

However, even as distracted as I was, the ….. Kelly ….. Cancer ….Unsure ….Big Appointment on Tuesday to learn more kept creeping back into my thoughts.  Somehow I had to make it through the day until the big appointment the next day.

Tuesday FINALLY came and I waited for my mom to call as soon as they got out of the appointment. 

The call finally came and that’s when I heard the diagnosis.  Stage 4Incurable. Cancer.

We also learned that neither chemo, radiation or heavy medication could fight it.  We were dealing with a new and very rare cancer.

Luckily, they had caught the cancer early and it was very slow growing they believed.  She would need to have surgery immediately, but the good news is we had time on our side.

Metastatic Carcinoid Cancer is still a fairly new cancer.  There isn’t a lot of research being done on it yet, but it is rapidly growing.  We have great hope that we have enough time for them to find a cure or way to slow the tumors down that our coating her liver.

If this is your first time reading my blog, I invite you to read more about this rare cancer and see how many family is living with it. 

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Now, nearly a year later, I am so thankful that we have this year behind us.  I’m so happy to see Kelly packing and planning her trip.  I’m so honored to have her as a sister.

Kelly and I aren’t BFF’s.  Nor do we get along, but (even though my mom doesn’t see it or would we admit it), we have grown a lot closer throughout this obstacle. 

I will miss her when she’s gone.  I will cry when she leaves.  But I am so happy to be saying Good-Bye for five months, and know that she will be back home before I know it….and not forever. 

This post is also part of Wordless WORDFUL Wednesday on the following blogs:
Parenting By Dummies & Seven Clown Circus
Live and Love…Out Loud
Crazy About My Baybah!
Carrie with Children
Project Alicia

Energy Sucker

That is what pools are …. energy suckers.

Bad?

No!  In this instance “energy sucker” is a GOOD thing!

After several days cooped up inside with snow fluttering outside, we were ecstatic to check into a hotel with a nice INDOOR pool!  The kids swam forever while Julia and I lounged in lawn chairs, pretending the sun was shining outside and not snowing! 

The kids had a great time getting the energy sucked out of them…

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The twins were so cute and wanted me to record them jumping!  They couldn’t wait to get out of the water to watch what they had just done!

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Swimming wears you out, which makes it the best energy sucker ever!

Later that day we had a memorable adventure rock climbing at Wild Walls!!  Can’t wait to post the pictures from the party we had there!  Fun times!

Happy Friday Friends!

Cousins Christmas Party

Returning to Spokane….

On the Saturday of our Spokane trip, a few days after Christmas Day, we had a Cousins Christmas Party. 

I am lucky that in my “real” family I grew up with cousins around.  On my dad’s side of the family I have cousins that live nearby but are slightly older then me.  On my mom’s side I have cousins my same age, but we live all across the country and only saw each other once a year.  I never had cousins that were my same age and grade, however these cousins get both!  Cousins their age that live close by!  How cool is that?

The cousins come in packs…three to be exact – five that fall in the 7-9 age category, four in the five year old age and four who are between 0-3.  THIRTEEN cousins all between 8 months old and 9 years old!  That is just too cool!

Anyway, back to the day of the party…..

Each cousin had a Secret Santa they bought for and it was at the party that the gifts were given out!  However, before the gift exchange we had some fun.  One fun thing that was done was an impromptu game of Musical Chairs!  The kids thought this was a BLAST!!

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Paige (bottom left) was the big winner of round one and Kaden (bottom right) won round two!  Both were super excited and proud of themselves for outlasting twelve other contestants!

While the kids went round and round I got to do my favorite thing in the world….be bossy and loud!  I got the job of running the music and coordinating the game!  However, I was nice and once a kid went out, I let them control the power [music].  Not only was this fun for the kids, but it also helped boost enjoyment for the kid who went out the previous round!  Win, Win!

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After two rounds of Musical Chairs it was time for the main event…PRESENTS!  The gifts were a hit for everyone!

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…and of course there were plenty of photo-ops!

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Another fun day!  Stay tuned for more Spokane fun!

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Spokane Car Accident & Cousins Day

Last Thursday I made another trip with Julia and the kids to Spokane. This trip was a little bit different then usual because Kim and her family were joining us!  A fun family trip!

Our big plans on Friday was to go up to Mt. Spokane and go sledding.  It took quite a bit of time to get everyone up and dressed for the snow, before we set off.

As soon as we got in the car and were pulling out of the driveway, we got a call from Kim who said they (Kim, her husband Jason and their four kids) had just been in a really bad car accident. 

Sudden change of plans. 

As fast as we could, we unloaded all the kids and snow stuff, left them with Julia’s cousin, Dana and headed to the crash scene.

We had no idea what to expect when we arrived.  We had had some contact with Kim and Jason, but weren’t clear on how bad it was.  We were shocked when we pulled up and saw the entire passenger side of the van (brand spankin’ new van, I might add!) extremely dented, scraped and side-curtain airbags deployed.

Their van was t-boned, while they were driving about 50mph.  You can just see where the other car pulled out and directly into their car.  Driving straight into the back sliding door with the main impact hitting the passenger side door.

Miraculously, nobody was seriously injured.  Kim sustained the most injuries (she was in the passenger seat), but compared to how bad it could have been, her injuries aren’t that bad.  The entire family was extremely lucky.  Thank goodness for a solid van, air bags that deployed like they were supposed, seat belts and car seats for all four kids.

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Our plans changed quickly!  Instead of going sledding Julia and I brought all Kim’s kids back to Dana’s house while Kim went to the hospital to be checked out.  We got back to the house and had a fun laid back cousins day!  There were 13 cousins all 9-years-old and under in that home!  It was loud and crazy, but so much fun!

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The car accident was the big event of the long weekend, but don’t worry we had several more days of fun to go!  Stay tuned!

P.S. Happy Birthday, Julia!!

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The 2012 Lights of Christmas

I love traditions and one of my favorite holiday traditions is going up to Stanwood to visit Warm Beach’s Lights of Christmas.  It’s a local Christmas lights display, featuring MORE THAN 1 million light!  It is crazy pretty!

This makes my forth consecutive year attending with the Munro’s.  Every year is fun and beautiful, but I must admit I was a bit disappointed by the displays this year.  Normally they have displays going way up high into the trees and yet this year it appeared the expanded the display, but didn’t increase the amount of lights.  It still was beautiful, but the awe effect wasn’t nearly as prevalent this year as it has been in the past.

That didn’t stop us from having some fun though!

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If you haven’t checked out the pictures from my previous visits, you should hop over and take a look!  (2009, 2010 and 2011)

Reese Turns 2!!

On Saturday, I got to celebrate the sweet, sassy and spunky Miss Reese Julia’s 2nd birthday with her!  This girl cracks me up…total attitude and control for only being 2…reminds me a lot of myself!  She is one strong willed, adorably special, little girl!  Love her!

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Kim also thought it would be fun to wrap me up in toilet and crepe paper….the kids thought this was HILARIOUS and a lot of fun!  Good thing I’m a good sport Smile

But, what was more fun was the fight we had after! 

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A cool side-note….Reese has an older brother, Quinten, who is 11 months older then him (he turned 2 HERE, last year while I was in Texas!) and for the next 22 days they BOTH will be 2 years old!  They are almost Irish Twins…would have had to have been born in the same year to be official Irish Twins….very cool none the less!  Oh and yes, they are biological siblings Smile

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