Monday, September 28, 2009


McKay: When I get home from school, I want to watch Star Wars Episode One: The Phantom Mayonnaise.

Mmm, phantom mayonnaise. (I think I have some of that in the back of my fridge....)

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Hey Family!

Check out Alison's family pics on our blog! R+C Photography blog.

I just thought they were super cute. I'm lucky to have such a cute family to take pictures of. :D

Monday, September 21, 2009

Hannah and the 84 inch umbrella...

She was such a good sport about us trying out our new toys on her.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Harry Potter mania!

My English major heart is so proud and full. Hannah and I have been reading Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone together each night and she has been loving it. We ran down to our wall of bookshelves in the basement tonight and grabbed my copy of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets to start tomorrow night.

It't so much fun passing on a love of reading (and a love of Harry Potter) to my daughter. She amazes me with her quick understanding of the nuances and with the insightful questions she asks. It's been a really fun and special time each evening. I'm loving it. I'm already planning for what other books we'll share when Harry Potter is over.

Thursday, September 17, 2009


Garrett: And Tuna Republic, and Tuna Republic, and Tuna Republic...Mom? What's Tuna Republic?

Yep, he's learing the Pledge of Allegiance.

Monday, September 14, 2009


McKay: I just had the Phonics dream.

Hannah: No fair! I've been waiting my whole life for the Phonics dream!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Update on McKay

He is doing REALLY well.

Once he started the Prednisone the blisters that were forming on his hand started to receede. As the days went by, the blisters never burst or opened into lesions. Instead it just became a kind of shrively bit of blister.

His hand has started to go down with swelling, and it was rather bruised-looking for awhile, but now it is looking good.

I have to think with the quick treatment (usually they don't start treatment until after the blisters have burst and caused lesions, since people generally don't worry a lot until then--and they don't figure it out until then), we've been really lucky.

Thank you all for the prayers and kind thoughts.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Lehi Folks, a word of caution

In the very late evening of Tuesday, McKay woke up in a lot of pain, with his hand rapidly and inexplicably swelling. Since we were unable to tell if it was affecting his breathing we called the paramedics. They were mystified. We took him to the ER, they too were unsure what it could be. There was really no mark, other than the huge swelling.

In the morning, we saw the small beginnings of a blister and we took McKay to the dr. for follow-up. The dr. felt fairly sure it was a spider bite, but was unsure if it was a black widow or brown recluse. Neither scenario fit perfectly, but it was more satisfactory than other answers, so we began treatment for that (oral prednisone.)

A friend who saw that this was the diagnosis on Facebook suggested looking at Hobo spider bites, as they were often improperly labeled as Brown Recluse bites. After a bit of Googling and identification, I was quickly and sickeningly aware that I have seen this spider MANY times around our yard. I have boldly cleaned up many a web, especially where the siding meets the foundation of the house. I have seen the funnel shaped webs in my rose bushes, at the base where the main branches make a V. I have seen them along the fence as I have watered my garden and picked vegetables. I thought nothing of it, as I am usually fine with the natural cycle of life.

However, I am now planning to be extra vigilant. I have set up hobo traps and we have (while wearing long pants, long shirts and gloves) sprayed all the funnel webs we could find--and there were many. I will be inspecting the children's playhouse and swingset, trampoline, climbers, the hammock and garden area, etc. MUCH more carefully and much more often now.

Hobo Spider

This is a link to a picture of a Hobo spider. I would feel pretty confident that you've probably seen them about.

Funnel Web

This is a link to a "funnel web" picture. Again, I am sure you've seen them around.

I was shocked (and kind of bizarrely facinated) when I was walking by a rose bush early this year to catch a show of a spider--that I know know was a hobo--jumping from it's web and attacking a wasp in mid-flight. They don't use sticky webs, so they are more agressive, as they are required to be to obtain food.

Anyway, please be aware of these spiders. I have seen them and I have honestly thought they were just a garden spider, and as such I was leaving them entirely alone to maintain the balance of the ecosphere of my yard, etc. No more. I will leave garden spiders alone, but war has been declared on hobos. My yard has entirely too many children playing in it to have these spiders out there. It has been scary and painful, to say the least.I just wanted to make all of my friends and neighbors in the same area aware that these spiders are out there and what the symptoms and signs of the bites are. Fast treatement is very important to a good, and less painful outcome. We're still in the midst of it, but I hope our fast actions and treatment will make healing much quicker and less painful/scarring, etc.