Owen and his mom hung out with us today.  We were planning on taking the boys on a photoshoot outdoors, but it was SNOWING!  Snowing!  It’s suppose to be spring!  Instead we geeked out on Photoshop and took some indoor shots.


On one of the evenings when Vince was off camping, Dara (Nat’s boyfriend) came over for dinner. He’s a civil engineer, working on building road and bridges in the DC area. Jeremy and Dara talked a lot about traffic.

Also, during that dinner, Jeremy said that there were no pictures of me on the blog, so he grabbed the camera and took these photos.  My own family is so well documented except for me, they will just have to image me taking all the photos when they look through the photos on the blog.

Outdoor education

Vince is spending the next two nights camping out with his 6th grade class. MCPS used to have outdoor ed last a full week.   I remember going on this trip myself 30 years ago. It was a lot of fun when I went, but those poor teachers who had to spend a week managing hundreds of pre-teens. Thirty years ago, I’m sure it wasn’t SNOWING when we went.  What a crazy winter.  Every 5 minutes, it’s snowing.  I’m hoping this is the LAST snowstorm of 2014!  It’s almost April…

Edda’s birthday.

Today is Edda’s actual birthday. If you’d like to make a contribution on behalf of Edda, here’s the Rett organization that we like: Rett Syndrome Research Trust. They send 97 cents of every dollar raised to a science lab somewhere in the world full of pipettes, mice, electrophoresis gels and DNA polymerase.  I used to really hope for a cure for Rett Syndrome, but lately I’ve been happy just thinking I’m raising money to fund a poor gradute student’s stipend to further research about the brain. I used to be a poor science graduate student! I loved that I had a stipend so I could spend it on burritos at Baja Fresh! Not that I wouldn’t send a box of chocolates every day for the rest of my life to the graduate student who figured out how to fix Edda’s brain.

 Here are some behind-the-scenes photos of the pancake breakfast:

Edda’s pancake breakfast.

Ten thousand people at the house. OK, really more like 140 people at the house. Our 2nd annual birthday pancake breakfast was a huge success. So many people came to the house to celebrate Edda’s tenth birthday. It was overwheming and beautiful and touching and a perfect way to celebrate Edda’s birthday. I can’t believe Edda is 10. She was diagnosed with Rett Syndrome 8 years ago and I thought I would never be happy again. But here we are, not so many years later and we are just motoring along, doing all the crazy stuff we are doing and having a lot of fun.  

Our family did not implode like I thought it might. We did not stop having fun together like I thought we might. There have been so many sad birthdays with just us sitting around our little table trying to celebrate Edda’s birthday without feeling too sorry for ourselves (I’m sure I can look back on this blog and find the photos I posted of those times, but I’m not going to). But sitting in the middle of that party yesterday, I was just so happy and grateful that we turned what had been such a traditionally hard day for us into something that just made my heart burst with joy and happiness.

My mom cooked 25 pounds of bacon.

Jeremy made 500 pancakes.

Turned our house into a cafeteria.

All the grandparents came.

A beautiful tiered birthday cake and tiara.

And Warren, the pizza guy, and his sidekick, Harry, made it the best party ever!

Rett Syndrome, you can kiss my ass.

Happy Birthday, Edda

Happy Birthday, Edda, from Grand Mom and Pa, rena & noel.

While waiting my flight back to Oak Ridge, TN & sitting at a small round table, having my dinner with chicken salad at the National Airport of Washington DC, there are a lot of things taking off and coming back down through my mind.  When gradually settling down, I wish Edda has a wonderful birthday.

I guess I know Edda better than she knows me.  But, it may be not. Who really knows?  It is hard to say in which way it really is.

This morning, Rena went shopping for Edda dresses at Macy’s.  And she is not too sure about her sizes. Next time, I definitively will take Edda shopping with Rena.  So, we will make sure the dresses will fit and also enjoy her companionship.



Running around trying to tie up loose ends for Edda’s birthday party on Saturday. One of my errands involved going to the pizza place and having the lunch special – two slices of spinach pizza & a Diet Coke for $5.29. This is Warren. He’s the main cook at the pizza place. He’ll be at Edda’s party on Saturday.  Be there or be square.

Quiet week? Maybe? OK quiet hour.

Jeremy’s been out of town in SF for the last week from Monday to Monday. Now he’s off to Deleware today. So I stop shooting photos and the blog gets neglected. Ummm, let’s see what happened? I managed to make it to the mid-way point of this semester of nursing school. This week is spring break, although it’s not very spring-like with 10 inches of snow dumped on the ground on Monday night. That resulted in the 10th day of school being cancelled this year. I’ve done a bunch of clinical days where I go into nursing rehab facilities where I practice a bunch of vital signs and help patients transfer in and out of their beds. Vince and Edda are doing well. Edda went sledding on Monday, I need to find the video of that and post it here.

Oak Ridge, TN

After staying in a hotel for a month, it was time to move out to an apartment.  My apartment at Oak Ridge is a pretty new one, about 2 years old.  It is bad because the high voltage power lines are just in front.  It is good because it locates on the same street as my office is and  it is on lake shores.
In my hotel stay, I collected a lot of tissues, bottle water and toilet papers (picture 1).  They can probably last for a while.  The washer and dryer room are inside my bath (picture 2).  And bed is same as at home or at hotel.  One night on real bed is okay.  But, for several nights, I prefer to sleep on the floor.  It makes my back better.  The breakfast place of the apartment is turning into a dining and the place for working (picture 3).  The table and four chairs were bought from “Big Lot” which is one of Mom’s favorites.  The light fixtuer is from Walmart.  And the new black-&-white printer (I don’t like pictures and color in general.  I prefer text and black & white) is from Staples. On the kitchen counter top is a picture of  Mom and myself which I have carried to everywhere I work, for a long time.  It once was on my office desk in China also.