Sunday, September 26, 2010

Happy 3rd Birthday, Lilah!

Dear Lilah,

On September 13th, 2010 you turned three. We celebrated your third birthday the day before with a small pony party for you and your friends. You were so convinced that your birthday was the 12th that when Daddy and Mommy whispered "Happy Birthday" in your ear on the 13th you got mad and said, "It's not my birthday!"

You are still a busy, fearless girl. You are imaginative, strong-willed, and super-sweet to your parents and friends.

You enjoy going to "school", which is really your day-care while Mommy works. You have many friends there and are "one of the girls" according to the teachers. You also like going to the barn with Mommy to either "help" her teach, or play with the kids there. You enjoy showing off your riding skills to anyone watching. Your best friend is Addie, with whom you alternately fight and love on. You are enthralled with Addie's little sister, "Baby Mira." You try to take good care of Mira whenever you see her.

You also enjoy playing with all your cousins on both sides of the family. We like to see you playing with your cousins and hope you are close to them when you grow up. You also love seeing both sets of grandparents and will ask to go to their houses.

Our hearts break when we realize how fast you are growing up. You continue to be our perfect angel who has brightened up our world since the moment we knew you were on the way. We love you beyond words Lilah.

Friday, September 10, 2010


As an end-of-summer vacation, Nick and I decided to do a road trip of the beautiful state of Oregon. We arranged to meet friends and family along the way!

We used the Roundhouse as our "jumping off" point. From Sisters we traveled to John Day through the fossil beds. Here we stopped to take a look. Lilah was bent on walking Simon herself!

We arrived in the afternoon at Nick's nephew's house in John Day. Cousin(?) Kaitlyn is just three months younger than Lilah, and they had a blast exchanging toys and playing in the backyard:

We later took them to a park:

Lilah's Daddy reads to the two girls:

The next day Nephew Keith (who's only younger by a couple years) took us to see the salmon spawning in the John Day River. Yum, yum.... You spawn Salmon so I can eat you and your children for dinner!
If you look closely, you can see a ginormous salmon in the middle of the river:

The group looking for salmon:

The good friends: (Lilah talks a lot about Kaitlyn now!!)

The day after we traveled on to Burns, where one of my best girlfriends lives. Auntie M & her new husband (as per our June blog) took us out to see the beautiful Steens in Burns' backyard:
This is Kiger Gorge. It's high elevation and very windy, so Nick has Lilah bundled up in his arms while we checked the gorge out:

The newlyweds overlooking the Alvadore Desert

Auntie M!!

After a long day of driving around, Michelle (Auntie M) and Boyce took us to the local hot springs:

Soon it was time to hit the road again. We took a different route home -- constantly taking new roads and highways we've never driven on. Thank you Lilah for being so good in the car!! She was a star.
We saw a lot of beautiful country and a lot of wide open spaces. Makes us want to pack up and move! We are thankful for a safe, fun & interesting trip, and thankful for being able to see people near-and-dear to us. We will have to do it again!
On the way home:

Hood to Coast

Shortly after finishing chemo, Nick informed me he was going to run Hood to Coast. I was skeptical. Even the doctor raised his eyebrows when Nick told him of his new goal. Racing a major race like Hood to Coast six months after finishing chemo ... But yet there became a quiet connection with Nick's cancer, to Hood to Coast, and Nick was determined to run.

And... Nick went on to successfully finish his first Hood to Coast race!

I did not see Nick run his last leg, or cross the finish line. Instead, I waited at home with Jake, Carol, and Lilah. We decorated the house and made a gift basket (which included hand-designed t-shirts by Carol & fam) for celebrating.

Making Nick's t-shirt: His shirt has our hand-prints and written messages.

Lilah's shirt says "I'm Proud of my Daddy"

Opening the gift basket:

The decorated living room:

We didn't talk about what Hood to Coast represented to us. We didn't even try to think about it because we hope & feel our cancer story is in the past. But having Nick run Hood to Coast was emotional for both of us.

Nick -- we are proud of you and we love you!!