30 June 2012

Beating the Heat

The week started out nice with temps hovering around 84 or 85 degrees and nearly no humidity.  However, things quickly changed on Wednesday and got increasingly worse the rest of the week.  Wednesday we hit the low 90's.  Thursday we set a record high with Indy hitting 104 and our little suburb outside of Indy officially hitting 106.  Yesterday we hit 100 with the heat index at 112 around 3pm but within 45 minutes we had a nice storm roll in and it cooled us down slightly.  Within hours though we were back up to the upper 80's and it was humid.  Today we're back up in the 90's and humid again and no relief in sight for the next 10 days.  We're looking at low to mid 90's all next week. Not that I mind terribly other than it causes my air conditioner to run nonstop but gives us a great excuse to stay cool in the pool.

So Wednesday and Thursday we were in the pool at my mom and dad's house most of the afternoon.  The kids love it.  Emi especially.  She's jumping into the 8 ft deep end with her water wings and just zipping all over the pool with those little legs propelling her wherever she wants to go.  We're hoping to have her swimming water wing free by the end of the summer.  It's not easy teaching a deaf child how to swim when your ASL is not up to par and she can't hear you tell her what she needs to be doing.  She's got the kicking down, she's just not getting the hang of moving her arms too.  Eriks is a pretty good swimmer but we need to work on him learning how to tread water for at least 5 minutes.  We also would like him to learn how to dive.

We'll likely be back in the pool tomorrow beating the heat.  Why not?  It's in my parents' backyard and it's free.  Plus the sun is making me a bit more healthy looking by putting some color in my pale purplish skin.  I'm also getting some exercise and working muscles which in turn makes me tired so I'm sleeping better at night.  Can't complain about that.

Enjoy the photos from our time in the pool Thursday.

29 June 2012

Three Years Ago

Three years ago today Lane and my mom were on the other side of the world meeting our daughter for the very first time.  From the time we saw her face on March 26th in an email until June 29th, all we had were photos.  Finally, she was safe in Lane's arms.

I still can't believe that she's gone from this:
To this:
She is one of a kind.  Who knew she would blossom into such a bright, funny, energetic, spitfire of a dare devil.  She has no fear.  She has jumped into the pool at my parents house several times without wearing her water wings and could care less if she sinks.  When someone pulls her out, she's laughing hysterically.  Luckily, someone has been in the pool when she's done this.  My guess is she'd jump from the roof of our house if she could.  She's definitely keeping us on our toes!  Crazy kid!

Happy Gotta Day Anniversary!!!

25 June 2012

Jāņi in Michigan

This past weekend the family went up to Michigan to spend the weekend with other Latvians celebrating the midsummer holiday known as Jāņi.  Unfortunately for me, I started Friday with a low grade fever and never really recovered for the weekend so it was very little partying for me and a lot more sitting on my parents deck chilling.

Eriks had to be there for a regional dance practice for the Latvian Song and Dance Festival being held in Milwaukee this year.  It will the first time ever he does Latvian folk dancing in a major performance. He's super excited but doesn't know we're going to be there to watch him dance.  It is not an inexpensive trip and originally we arranged it so that he goes with my parents and sister.  After the guilt took over and kept eating at me, I told Lane that we could not miss the opportunity to see our son dance in his first ever major performance.  So we found a way to come up with a hotel stay for one night so that we could watch him perform.  The life of a student stinks.  Money is tight and I'm hoping the next 2 yrs of school fly by so that we don't have to worry about it so much.  Originally we were going to surprise Eriks, but I think we're going to tell him this week that we will be there to see him dance and that he'll still have time with his grandparents without us.

The weather this weekend was gorgeous.  The kids got some time on the boat and on the lake Saturday.  Emi went tubing for the first time ever this weekend and loved it.  She didn't want it to end and was disappointed when her time tubing was up.  Eriks on the other hand wants to go so badly but then when my dad starts increasing the speed on the boat he freaks out.  My guess it's an Asperger's thing for him.  Which is so weird because the first time he went on my uncle's boat at about age 4, he loved the speed and didn't mind it at all.  But as the years have gone on, he doesn't want to go fast and has this fear even though he's wearing a life vest and is a decent swimmer.

I'm thinking about going up by myself on Saturday and hanging out with my sister and parents for 1 night to get a bit of a reprieve.  I have been with my kids non-stop since they got out of school and although I love them, I need a break.  Well, almost non-stop.  I got a bit of a break last week when they spent the night at my parents' house because I had to get up at 5 am to drive to Columbus for a cardiac CT scan and a doctors appointment.  I don't think that really counts because we didn't have a choice.  I won't know the results of the CT scan for a few weeks.  My cardiologist said he was just getting some of the images back when I had my appointment with him and it will take a few weeks to get a good look at them and get results.  The only thing I wasn't warned about was the fact that they would put in an IV so they could push some contrast.  It hurt and I didn't like it.

It's going to get hot here later this week.  They're saying possible temps over 100.  It's been very dry here in the Indy burbs as well.  We've had maybe .100 of an inch of rain the entire month.  Maybe a little more.  We've had a bunch of brush fires in the area as well.  Our water bill is going to be sky high trying to keep our grass from looking completely terrible and keeping our flowers and garden happy.  So please beg Mother Nature to push some rain our way.  We really, really need it.  So we'll probably be in the pool trying to beat the heat.

17 June 2012

Always Backup Your Hard Drive

I'm learning the hard way that it's important to back up your computer every so many months so that if something happens, you're not up a creek.  After 5 years, my laptop's hard drive decided to stop working.  We're still trying to see if we can get the info off of old drive.  But everything that was on my laptop is now gone.  Poof, disappeared.  We had to replace the drive so I have a new one.  A month ago, I did back up all the photos I had on my laptop.  So thankfully, thousands of photos were saved.  However, all my documents and saved files were not.  There are only a few things that I'm pretty upset about if we can't retrieve them and they are some papers I wrote a few years ago in a college history course I took that got huge praise from the professor that graded my assignments and exams.  The other thing I'm sad about losing is I was keeping a written record of all the books I've read.  It's one of my interesting quirks.  I'm doing it because I'd like to see how many books I can read from here until the end of my life and so that I don't re-read something I don't want to.  There have been a few times where I've purchased a book thinking I've never read it only to get about 50 pages in and remember everything about it.  There were about 250 books on that list thus far and I have no idea how many I'm going to remember reading.  I know I can rebuild much of the list since I've enjoyed lots of books by the same author and some of them are a series like Harry Potter and the Twilight series.  I'm waiting to rebuild the list until I know for certain that it will not be able to be recovered.  I've lost all my bookmarked web pages, scrapbook and stamping project ideas that I found on the web.  I was totally sick to my stomach when it happened.  I turned on my computer and it wouldn't go to the desktop page.  It wouldn't do anything.  But like I said, I'm so thankful I made the decision to back up my photos and they were all saved.  I would have been so very sick if I had lost all those.

In other news, we're setting up for another hot and dry summer.  We thought we were going to get slammed today with a nice line of storms that was sitting over in Illinois.  The line of storms dissipated and we didn't get a drop.  The weather man says we're supposed to get some scattered storms today but I'm not holding my breath.  We haven't had rain in nearly 2 weeks here.  There has been no traceable amount of rain here in our little suburb outside of Indy at all this month.  We're watering the backyard as I type this.

I have a few photos of the kids that I'd like to share later this week.  I just replaced the hard drive of my computer a few days ago so I haven't had time to upload any photos.  So look for them in a few days.  I just wanted to explain my absence.  My computer died about 10 days ago and it took a week of trying to mess with it to see if we could get it back up and running before we decided to replace the hard drive and buy something in hopes of getting the info off of it.

03 June 2012

Where Did the Time Go? 4 Month Rewind

I know, I know, I know.  I'm sure no one thought I was coming back to the world of blogging after being gone nearly 4 months.  Well, it wasn't completely by choice.  Yes, I will admit that I had grown bored of blogging.  It was getting mundane and I had lost the spark to take photos and write.  A few people asked me if I was ever going to blog again.  My dad reminded me several times that I hadn't blogged in a long time.  I guess the time had come to get back into blogging.

I also was very sick this winter and spring.  If you remember in my last post way back when, I had just been diagnosed with pneumonia and it took me a very long time to get over it.  Typically it takes about 3 weeks to get over pneumonia.  Add in my complex heart history and it easily took me about 5 weeks.  I was finally feeling more like myself by the end of April.  My allergies are killing me now though.  I never had any problems for the first 21 years of my life living here in Indy.  Since moving back, it's been a whole other story and this spring especially has been brutal.  Lane's suffering more than he'd like this spring as well.  Most days he's OK, but when the allergies hit, they are really really bad.  Today is one of those days.

So here are the highlights of the past few months.

- Spring break was not all that exciting.  Neither child had it at the same time.  They don't have spring break at the same time next year either but I think Emi will be taking 2 weeks so that we can go somewhere.  Probably Florida.  Hopefully the weather down there will be fantastic.

- In April Eriks received his First Holy Communion.  It's hard to believe how quickly he is growing and changing.  The weather that day was horrible.  Rainy and cold.  Definitely not the weather I was expecting at the end of April.  Even though the weather was horrible, the day was so special and Eriks was surrounded by both sets of grandparents, his godparents and most of his aunts and uncles as well as almost all of his cousins.  One of my nieces was ill so she and her dad were unable to make it.

- Eriks finished his first year at Lumen Christi school and his first year of Latvian School.  He seemed to enjoy both but my guess is he's glad to have a break from both for awhile.  He has a very good year at Lumen Christi.  The smaller size class was a huge help for him as he benefitted from more one on one time with his teachers.  Latvian School was a little rough.  More so because he didn't know what to expect and it was a whole new world for him.  He caught on fairly quickly though and in my opinion did better than I thought he would his first year.  I only say that because it's hard to do something you've never done before.  Next year will go much better for him and my guess is he'll have different teachers that know him.

- Lane ran his 1st mini-marathon at the beginning of May.  He ran 13.1 miles in just over 2:01.  He was happy with his time but really would've liked to have finished it in under 2 hrs.  If he decides to run it again next year he'll work hard to do that.  He didn't train as much as he wanted to but was happy with his time.  His brother finished 17 minutes behind him.  He'll never finish it as fast as the Africans do.  I think the winner for the men's finished in just over 1 hr but was disappointed in his time because he said if it wasn't so humid, he would've finished in under an hour.  They were running about 5 minute miles. Sick.

- We attended 2 weddings in May.  One was on the 19th and the other was a week later on the 26th.  We had fun at both.  We have at least one more wedding that we know of to attend this year over Labor Day weekend.  This has been the busiest year for us for attending weddings in quite some time.

- Finally, I turned 37 last week.  Never thought I'd make it this long.  I wasn't even sure I'd make 20.  Now I'm very happily pushing 40.  It was a good birthday.  Nice and low key.  I totally expect the opposite for my 40th in 3 years.

One more small note.  I have always had a passion for photography.  For at least the past 5 years now, I have been talking about a career as a photographer.  Well, I am getting much more serious about it.  If you are friends with me on FB you have seen my photos.  I've shown off a lot here as well.  Anyhow, I'm trying to get my foot in the door now as a photographer.  I'm hoping in the next month or so, I'll have a website up and running in hopes of finding jobs.  I in no way see myself as a professional yet.  I'm still learning and have a lot to learn.  But several people have asked me recently upon seeing my photos if I've made it a profession yet.  Sadly the answer is no.  With that being said, if they think my work is good, why not give it a shot.  You never know what will happen if you don't try, right?

So here are some photos of activities over the past few months since I've been away.

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