Sunday, September 30, 2007


September 30, 1971, my homegirl Susan Shanks was born!Hope you have a great day, Sooz!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Yay! Health Update...

Today (Tuesday) Dr, Reid left me a message telling me she wanted to see me in her office at 1:30pm so we could talk for a few minutes. This kind of scared me because I thought she would give me my diagnosis over the phone since we had talked about most of the possibilities and treatments earlier. But when I spoke with her, she confirmed that I had Graves Disease and told me the course of action. First, we try Tapazole (sp?) to regulate hormone production and "calm down" the thyroid. We start with the lowest dose, testing my blood for progress (in lowering my T4 count, which I think she said should be around 24 and mine was 89, and raising my TSH, which was zero). When we find the dose that works, we stick with it for a few months and see if it causes remission. If so--good. If not, then we have the radioactive iodine ablasion (sp?), which kills the thyroid and then I take synthroid pills the rest of my life.

So I guess either way, I will be on some kind of medication for most of the rest of my life. But if it works, I am totally fine with that (sorry, Dad...I didn't feel very good about the natural remedy this time...). I am so excited to be myself again!

What Heidi Gave Me For My Birthday...

- a wake up birthday song and a hug
- a spilled juice mess to clean up
- lots of sass
- spilled ice water wiped up with clean clothes I had folded the night before and placed in a basket that was, unfortunately, near the spill site
- grated cheese sprinkled all over my bed (don't ask--she was "feeding her elephants")
- two stinky diapers
- Three changes of clothes by 10am
-Saw a picture of Adam and Eve, then explained to me that Adam and Eve made "trabbles to the witch's house so June and Rocket could save them." I slowly realized that she had Adam & Eve confused with Hansel & Gretl from a recent "Little Einsteins" episode.
- a tantrum at bedtime
-a goodnight hug that erased all the bad stuff

I love my Lynners...

Birthday #36: Party Pix

My fabulous MIL made the most wonderful turkey dinner for my birthday! It was sort of a harvest celebration because all of the food (besides the turkey) was grown at the ranch! We had mashed ranch potatoes, sliced ranch cucumbers and carrots and tomatoes, cole slaw with home-grown cabbage, and bread with homemade freezer jam! It was such a treat to (a) have my favorite meal, and (b) not have to cook or do much clean up...thanks, Mom Melin!Around the dinner table: Rich, Danny, Grandpa Tom, Addie, Angie, Little Rosalie, James, and Heidi.
After dinner we opened gifts...this one is from Angie & family
And this one was from my M & towels and a mini-cuisinart.
This one from Rich was SO FABULOUS...a t-shirt (so fun) and an ipod Shuffle (see it clipped to the shirt?), already loaded up with about 20 of my favorite CDs to listen to while I walk! Woo-hoo!

My hubby and kids also got me this jerky maker to use with the dehydrator I got last Mother's Day. There are a bunch of spices in the box, which can be added to ground meat, then extruded out of that gun I am holding up onto the dehydrator trays and voila! You've got jerky! Fabulous protein source for food storage and a great snack (I LOVE it made with ground turkey, and it's often about $1. pound)
My helpers: Addie, Danny, and Heidi
We finished with mom made a Chocolate Spice Zuchini bundt cake, and it was HEAVENLY! I am not a cake or pie fan, but this was SO GOOD!
Thanks for a great birthday, family!

PS: I also got lots of cute cards in the mail, and my mom sent me a box of cute scrapbooking stuff...THANKS!

My Funny Girls

Sunday Night Family Prayer, Addie: "Dear Heavenly Father, please let Jesus know that my prayer is for the whole family and the one Heidi is going to say is just for her."

Oh, the competitiveness!!

Rich and I were just laughing about our favorite Heidi funny: whenever we listen to "The Lion Sleeps Tonight," she lays down and pretends to sleep, and then when the "weee-a-weee-oh-momma-way," part comes on, she gets on all fours and roars at everyone dancing around her. Luckily, we caught this on video, so when I get around to uploading all the video from the past month, you'll see for yourself!

Recent Photos

0919: James is cutting down to one long nap these days, so sometimes he falls asleep around dinner time, poor guy!
0919: Addie is a ham!
0920: We borrowed RICH'S old walker to see if it would encourage James to stand and walk. Tha walker is so cool--it collapses flat and they bought it for Rich in Germany back in 1971! (Too bad James doesn't really like the walker and he's WAY too big for it...)
Here is what James' days are like--his sisters are always in his way!
Rich snapped some fall colors while he was out running errands on's getting really beautiful around here!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Thyroid Thursday

This morning I left the house at 8am with Heidi and James. I took them to my MIL, then headed down the block to the hospital to eat some yummy iodine capsules (no injections or drinks for me) and meet the Nuclear Medicine person who would do the scan 4 hours later.
I saw Dr. Reid in the waiting area and she came by and asked if I was getting my scan and I said yes. She said, "Good! I'm anxious to get those results because you are going to feel so much better when we treat you! Your count was really high."
"Really high?" I asked.
"Yeah, it really surprised me you haven't had heart problems or other complications yet. So we'll get you well..." she said as she patted my shoulder and walked away. Hm.

Well, if all that is true, then I can't wait, either!

So I went back to my MIL's where we sewed 7 new curtains for the kindergarten reading area and played with James and Heidi. I felt fine (except for the profuse sweating, still!). Rich came there for lunch and I went back to the hospital for the scan. I layed down on this skinny cot thing with a rolled up towel under my neck to tilt my head back. Then I was slid into this big halo thing with a cone-shaped lens thing pointing at my throat and I had to hold still for 7 minutes, three times (different angles), and then for a few minutes for some other images. I was there for a total of an hour and 15 minutes. I have to go back at 8am for a scan that will take about 5 minutes. I hope it goes that fast!

So I feel fine, but everyone was acting all shocked about how much iodine my thyroid had absorbed already. I am excited to get it all straightened out, but I am praying for NO SURGERY! I HATE surgery and even going to the hospital, so I hope it can be medicated!

Anyway, I am just still a little drowsy from the other meds and I have some underlying anxiety about having a disease, but it's all good. I ran into a good friend last night at the grocery store and we talked for a while. She has a BS in Family Health so she was familiar with the illness and was so empathetic about ALL my problems (she's a really cool Mom-friend--you know, the kind you TOTALLY relate to, but never get to really hang with because you both have lots of kids and church callings? I love her, and I really feel like God sent her here for me 2 years ago!). Anyway, this afternoon right as I was leaving to pick up Addie, she came by with flowers, and bag of dinner, and the following sweet note with the flowers:

That last line is SOOOO awesome! I am going to remember it forever! I cried when she left because I was so touched and I felt my Heavenly Father's loving care through her actions. The following words came to mind as I drove over to get Addie, still thinking about this kind act:

Each life that touches ours for good

Reflects thine own great mercy, Lord

Thou sendest blessings from above

Through words and deeds of those who love

For worthy friends whose lives proclaim

Devotion to the Savior's name

Who bless our days with peace and love

We praise thy goodness, Lord above.

If you read this, BROWN LEG, thanks so much for your kindness! My family (and I ) really loved the dinner and the flowers make me happy each time I see them!

(PS: Jennifer, thank you for looking out for me, too! I appreciate your thoughtful messages on the phone today--as you've read, I was gone until about 3:30, then knee-deep in kids ever since, but I felt your love and thank you for being such a good and loyal friend!)

So farewell until later, y'all...
PS: Speaking of Family Health issues, my nephew TJay was diagnosed with Kohler's Disease in his foot and has a cast on it...poor guy. TJay, we hope your foot gets better soon!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Tuesday Update

Hola! I am still only half awake all day...shucks. Yesterday the hospital called and told me that I am scheduled for an updatake scan...on Thursday I have to go to the hospital at 8am and take some radioactive iodine capsules, then come back at 1pm for the first scan, and then return Friday morning at 8am for the uptake scan. Good times! I LOVE eating things that are radioactive!
On a brighter note, look how fun my kids are...

(We didn't let James play outside because Rich fertilized the lawn and we just know he'd eat the fertilizer. Surprisingly, Heidi didn't eat it either.)


Last year at the end of the school year, Addie brought home a sunflower seed in a cup from Headstart. It sprouted in the window sill and in July, we transplanted it to the backyard. Now look! This might be the first thing we've grown from seed that didn't die prematurely! Addie with her 4-foot-tall sunflower
flower & Addie
Silly girl wants "a flower in her hair."
James Ole watching from the lawn

Sunday, September 16, 2007

On The Mend

I really need a nap. I'll make this update short.
Two weeks ago I talked to my Stake President about how I have been really anxious and tired and sick and moody-swing-ish. He gave me a blessing and counseled me to seek some medical attention. So 10 days ago I saw one of my OBGYN's who is also family practice and she ordered a bunch of tests and gave me 2 months worth of anxiety medication (Lexapro). I started the Lexapro the day we left for Yellowstone, knowing it would make me super drowsy (and boy, did it!). It also made me shaky and nauseated (PS: "nauseated" means you feel sick; "nauseous" means you make people feel sick--just a little grammatical peeve of mine).
On Monday morning I went in and had a whole bunch of blood drawn. On Thursday they called and told me I had to come again because the orders got messed up. On Saturday morning my doctor called because the tests showed I have hyperthyroidism, which means my thyroid makes too many hormones and sends my system into overdrive (which usually means your appetite increases, but you still lose weight--my body only caught the first half of that!). So I had to go get more blood drawn so the could figure out if I have Grave's disease (click) or just a nodule (goiter) that's gone wild producing the extra hormone.

At any rate, we have nailed down a problem, and I am so glad it's mostly medical and not psychiatric because I really thought I was headed for crazy town. I'll update you as I hear more, and I will blog more regularly when my body gets used to this Lexapro and I stop falling asleep at the drop of a hat (and sweating BUCKETS).

Happy Sabbath, y'all!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Yellowstone: Day One

We didn't take a photo, but here is a picture of the North Entrance where we came in to Yellowstone Park, just 54 miles south of our house.Yellowstone North--
"For the benefit and enjoyment of the people"
Addie in Mammoth with the elk

Addie, Peter, Zuzana, and Heidi tour the terraces and hold their noses to avoid the sulfur-y steam blowing toward them
Mammoth Terraces
More Mammoth Terraces
This was my favorite place in Yellowstone when I was a little girl. Sadly, a lot of the beautiful waterfall-like areas of the terrace are dried up now.

Oops--I think this picture is from the Lower Geuser Basin on Day 2 (Sunday)--
it's Heidi , Zuzana, and Addie checking out the geysers.
We stopped near Tower Falls for a picnic.
Me, Heidi, & Zuzana at the picnic table.
We packed up and it was on to the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone!

The falls and the canyon never stop taking my breath away!
James and I walk along the path to the lookout at the Canyon
Daddy and Heidi overlooking the canyon...yikes!

Heidi and Addie at the Lower Falls of the canyon.
The girls dancing with Zuzana at the canyon
Elk in a serene field along the Madison on the way to West Yellowstone, where we spent the night at the Yellowstone Lodge.

Yellowstone: Day Two

We woke up Sunday Morning and walked in downtown West Yellowstone.
There are painted buffalo all over town--this one was in front of the Yellowstone Museum.
Addie and Heidi climbed on a bear statue...
check out Heidi's pose! She's a kook!

Sweet Adeline...
We stopped at the big gas station there on the corner by the Park entrance.
It has a big old soda fountain and the girls found these tiny forest animal figurines there.
Heidi (at the tiny soda shop table) shows off her buffalo and deer
Fun with Bambi and Bison

Later we saw this REAL bison by the Madison River
(most of those little trees in the background are the re-growth from the 1988 fire)
...and here we are taking a walk toward Old Faithful geyser
(Heidi, Addie, James, and Me)
James was excited to see the geyser! (Zuzana took this picture)
Here we are on the upper deck of the Old Faithful Inn. Addie is showing me the pictures she took (and if YOU want to see them , go to her blog).
One of the benches on the deck of the Inn
Addie took this picture of the geyser starting to go off again
Here we are eating our picnic lunch inside the Old Faithful Lodge (it was getting cold outside). We were right by the big fireplace and it was so comfy!
Later we stopped to see the Grand Prismatic spring at midway & lower geyser basin, and then to the Fountain Paint Pots (which have really shrunk since I last stopped there in 1980--I know, I have been here 6 or 7 times since then and haven't stopped). this is a picture of Addie in front of a pool near the paint pots.
And what trip to the Park would be complete without a Bison traffic jam?
We took this picture as we headed home.
We got home around 9pm on Sunday night. We all had a great time and Zuzana and Peter will have lots of great pictures adn memories to share when they go home in a few weeks!


Dear Loved Ones,                      This week has been a lot of work. Kids have been home sick with colds, Heidi was home on grievi...