Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Elizabeth is 11

11 Things we love about Elizabeth
1.   She is really pretty
2.  She loves her clothes and hair to always be perfect
3.  She likes hanging out with the older girls (she has found a way to be cool enough to hangout with alley and lucy!)
4.  Elizabeth is a good helper
5.  Elizabeth is really good at basketball
6.  Elizabeth handles hard situations really well
7.  Elizabeth takes peoples advice and applies it.
8.  Elizabeth tries hard in everything she does
9.  Elizabeth is generous
10.  She is diligent in doing what is right
11.  She makes our family much better!

First Day of School

 Alley 10th Grade and Lucy is a Freshman

Brady is in 7th Grade
Elizabeth and Claire in 5th and 3rd

Reese Started Kindergarten
And Double-Trouble at home!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

A Fun Visit from Grant and Maren

Grant, Maren Lief and Roma came in August to Visit us! 
We Loved having them.  We went tons of places and ate tons of food!

 Deception Pass was really nice.  Maren was so fun to have because she LOVED everything we did.  She was excited to see the sound, the trees the mountains,  she loved hiking and touring around!

 My Kids fell in love with little Roma! She and Jayne will be the best of buddies!


With the amount of  kids we have and Ben's back not feeling to great we decided that we would pretend camp. We got up early and made a day out of hiking Mt. Baker.  The weather was glorious, and we all had a lot of fun.

We came home and had foil dinners and s'mores, we even set up the tent for the kids...We are the best parents! ha.

Thursday, September 24, 2015


Skagit Hospital,  In good spirits!
She loved all the gifts.  This was our last day at Childrens

Who knew food could be so complicated?
Going Home!

On Saturday July 11, 2015 Elizabeth told me something was wrong because she had to go to the bathroom all the time.  I, at first, thought it was just a bladder problem.  But then when she said she was getting up three times a night to go to the bathroom, an instant pit in my stomach formed and I KNEW right then she had diabetes.  I called Kim, my sister-in-law and told her of my discoveries with Elizabeth and she told me all of the next steps I should take in seeking medical help for Elizabeth.
My intuition was proven right when our home teacher tested her and the meter read 411!
Tears burst from Elizabeths eyes, as she now knew she would be dealing with diabetes, just like her cousin Wesley.  I couldn't help but cry along with her as I knew life for my dear Elizabeth would never be the same.   All the challenges she would have to face, all the health risks awaiting her and realizing that the perfect future I had dreamed for her would be now be in question, raced through my mind.  Ben and Brother Johanason gave Elizabeth a blessing.  Something that we would rely on for the next few days.
After a lot of prodding and poking at the Skagit Valley Hospital we were sent to Seattle Children's Hospital.  We learned this was not a fleeting event we would be staying in the hospital 3 days to be trained and Elizabeth monitored.
The next few days were a whirlwind of emotions.  Every time a nurse would talk about how to handle diabetes at school Elizabeth would cry.  Other triggers for her were telling people about her diagnosis, it wasn't happening on her watch!  She also would get very upset anytime we would talk about the diabetic pump.
It broke my heart every time she cried!
The training was intense, but Ben and I both felt that our time couldn't be better spent then being sequestered in the hospital learning all about how our life would change taking care of our daughter.  I was overwhelmed with the amount of information we were taking in in such a short amount of time.   How were we ever going to learn all of this?  How could we be trusted to take care of Elizabeth? Why didn't I listen in math class?!
One night I left for home, and Ben and Elizabeth read scriptures alone in a dimly lit hospital room.  He told me the next day that they both felt the spirit so strongly as they read together that they couldn't help but kneel in prayer to talk to Heavenly Father as they did, a peace filled their hearts and, in my opinion, from that moment on Elizabeth has had complete comfort and faith in the fact that Heavenly Father is aware of her, and will protect her, and she has never looked back.  
As for me, I felt distinct peace from the moment I realized what had happened.  It's not in my character to be calm and collected during hard times, but I was amazed at how the Lord took fear out of the situation we were in.  I was taught that he can take fear, but we still have emotions, and feelings.  It's a hard thing to explain.

Elizabeth's cousin Abby was really the only visitor Elizabeth wanted at the hospital.  Abby was so sweet to stay one entire day and go to classes, and they even got to go swimming!
One doctor said, "Every time I come to check on Elizabeth she is gone playing somewhere in the hospital.  She is the healthiest girl in here."  Of course being in Children's hospital was a reality check of how blessed we actually were to have caught Elizabeth's diabetes when we did and that it is a manageable disease. 

A sweet moment happened for me.  During the long hours in the room.  I received a link to a video that was shown at the Christensen family reunion that we missed the week before.  In the video relatives spoke of Grandpa Christensen giving himself shots for his type 1 diabetes, and different stories of him.  Throughout our hospital stay I was very aware of Grandpa's diabetes, after all it was hereditary, but it wasn't until that time, watching that video, that I realized that Elizabeth was HIS heritage, and that he was Very aware of her and Me! Tears fill my eyes to think how kind Heavenly Father was to allow my Grandpa, who knew all the pains, all the fears, all the worry of this disease, to come and watch over us.  I knew he was there, and I felt a kindred connection to my Grandfather that died from diabetes when I was about Elizabeth's age.
It's now been about 2.5 months since Elizabeths diagnosis.  She is fully capable of taking care of herself and works hard to keep her numbers in range.  She is the most amazing child, never feeling sorry for herself, never the victim, but always looking to the future with faith.  

This is probably the only pic I will ever get 

Bored, Sending selfies to the siblings
Grandpa sent flowers all the way from OKC

Abby came swimming!

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Fun at Grandma's

We look forward to going to Oklahoma every year to visit family!
Some of our very favorite things are:
Aunt Donna's Cookies and Sunday Night Party
I have the best Sister-in-law in the world, who not only can make delicious cookies but hosts all 10 families at her house!  
She is so sweet and has no idea how much we love her for helping us to create memories!

Going to the boys land!  Its like a Childs dream to have a water slide, kayaks a lake and jet skis! 


Tractors!  Bennetts wildest dreams came true when Grandpa took him for a ride in Uncle Bryan's tractor! 

 Swimming and relaxing at grandma's pool
and Cousins!

Jayne Turns One!

 Jayne is such a fun baby! 
She fits so perfectly into our family.  She is super laid back, but has the fire to get mad and want things her way!
We spent a lot of time at the beach this summer and she learned to like it, but at the beginning the touch of the sand on her toes was the worst thing in the world to her!  So like a diva, she sat it her chair pouting until we would go home!