Tuesday, October 30, 2012


 Last week when I was feeling sad and tired and discouraged... my dear husband decided to cheer me up, and brought me some flowers. Isn't he sweet?    I love him. 

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Our Goings On

I guess most of you know that we've been spending a good deal of our extra time this summer working on a sideline business.   We call it Treasures_Etcetera, which is our Ebay username.   It's also a play on words because one of the main places we pick up things to sell on Ebay is a local thrift shop called Et-cetera.

We decided to try using Ebay as a source of income (as opposed to only a place to shop) in July of this past summer.   The first day Jenny went garage saleing with a mind to purchase things for re-sale, she found a nice Strawberry Shortcake set of bedding for a toddler bed.   The whole works, pillowcase included.   She bought it, and we took nice pictures and listed it, not sure if this would prove a venture in futility or not.   We were gratified when the set went for $25.00, netting us ten dollars.   Hmmm, is it really that easy to pick up ten dollars?  

It's addictive, finding nice and/or valuable things to turn around on Ebay.  Some of the more memorable things we've found:

A set of vintage York dumbells in the local thrift shop, purchased for three dollars and sold for seventy five.

A set of Haviland China, bought for five dollars at a garage sale, and sold for, well, I'm not going to say.   But the last set of two cups and saucers just went for about 25.00.

A like-new Petromax lantern.   It was a chance stop at the thrift shop again, but that stop netted me a days wages.

Today we loaded up and went to the city of Wilber garage sales.

Here is what we came home with.
 I'm not going to list it all, but the following pictures show a closer look at the table.   There are a few things worth noting.   The nice double boiler my wife found (it's on the right).   The one garage sale had a LOT of nice vintage toys, you can see them sort of, look for them to go on Ebay right after Thanksgiving.   The linens under the whole pile are my wife's favorites of the day, I think.  
 I thought these elephants were cute.
 My wife couldn't believe finding the Snowman plate (with all those stacked up cups behind) for $2.50.  They may get sold or we may keep them, we haven't decided.
 Let's see, vintage toys, Mudd shoes, alarm clock...
 My favorite, the Winnie the Pooh lamp.   Both the bear and the balloons light up.  
 This rocking puppy is pretty neat, but will probably go on Ebay.   I might keep that saw, or sell it, not sure yet.
 Oh, some nice old dishes from a thrift store.
 See this?   Yes we have the full 78 piece set.   That purchase may or may not net us anything, we may have spent too much for it.

Gwen liked her boots, you can't see them but she's wearing them.  And there are probably a few odds and ends I didn't point out or remember.  

All in all it was a fun day, and hopefully a profitable one!  

The whole point of this post is simply this:   We aren't especially smart, talented, or lucky.   But anyone can do this with a camera, an ebay user account, and a little motivation.   It's fun, and we enjoy it!

Thanks for looking, and be sure to check out my other items!

(Sorry, I've been typing too many ebay listings lately)


Monday, June 18, 2012

Bountiful Harvest

 Our garden is starting to produce lots of fresh veggies for us to eat. It it so much fun to go out and collect things and then enjoy eating them. Right now we have kohlrabi, cucumbers, sweet onions, shallots, garlic, sweet banana peppers, carrots, broccoli, and potatoes. Gwen can eat a whole cucumber by herself, no problem. I am very pleased with my carrots this year. I have tried to grow them before, but they were always a grand failure.
  Abbey gave me the 'Hazen' apple tree and this is the first year it is making apples for us. We were worried that the would be not be resistant to cedar rust, but they are looking simply delicious so far!
  I am enjoying gardening more this year than I have in the last few years, since my children are at a more independent age. I still think I have to have flowers, so I spent quite a bit of time babying and weeding the few different ones that managed to come up. I am a little disgusted because I cannot seem to be able to get strawflowers and statice to grow.
   Gardening is only part of our life right now. Gabe is teaching VBS this year. We are on our second week of that, and it isn't as bad as I thought it would be for me at home all evening with the babies. Today I went with Gabe on a truss delivery, so I got to spend some time with him that way. I must go now... next time I post I would like to tell about the delicious onion rings I made this evening. The were yummy, I thought, but I am rather partial to onion rings ;)  There are more pictures on picasa, just click here!

                                               We will have sweet corn to eat before too long!

Shallots, Carrots, Onions, Peppers, Kohlrabi, Cucumbers, Broccoli....

Hazen Apples!
The biggest sweet onion that Gabe has pulled from his patch so far this year.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

A Long Picture Post

     We went camping with the Young Marrieds and these are a bunch of pictures from our weekend. It was fun, but camping with little children is hard work!

 Myles didn't enjoy the swing as much as he thought he would :)
 Gwen did though
 Gwen and Connor
 Watching the dog. Gwen called it "Lassie"
 A sign we saw
 Abby and I, talking and watching babies
 Playing with the children
 This slide was rather tall and scary, but Gwen and Connor loved it.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Sunday afternoon

  It is Sunday afternoon, and Gabe and the children are sleeping. I slept for a little bit, but then woke up and that was the end of my nap. I think it must have been the coffee...
  So I decided to sit down and post on our blog, but now my brain seems to have ceased to function. I always wish I could come up with clever, meaningful things to say, but I think I shall just ramble about real life instead.
  Myles eyes have healed up rather nicely from surgery and he is doing very well. We think we can see a big difference in how much he can see, and I think that his personality seems to be less mamma-babyish than it was. He is walking much more than he was, although he still prefers to crawl, since that is still faster for him :)
  Gwen is a very busy girl and has been getting potty trained the last while. She does very well, and I am happy!
   Our garden is looking beautiful this year. The last couple years have been rather sad for the garden, but this year we don't have a tiny baby, so gardening seems to get more attention. I was going to upload a picture of the garden but I can't seem to find one.
   This week I hope to sew two dresses beside the other normal stuff. Marlese is coming Tuesday to sew with me, so that should be good incentive. This weekend we are going camping with the other young marrieds at Indian Cave State Park, and we are looking forward to that.
 I hear a baby and I think it is about time to get ready for church again....

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Update on Myles

It's Sunday morning, and we're enjoying a nice long morning...   The table is set for company and the china is reflecting the centerpiece bouquet Jenny picked last evening from her flowerbeds.   The children are having breakfast, and I'm taking just a few minutes to update you all.

Myles has done so well since his surgery, and we are sure that the prayers of all of you have contributed to his quick recovery.   His eyes look better (as far as alignment) and the redness will go down within a week or two.   We've avoided infection so far and things are looking very well. 

Jenny and I are beginning to realize just how much this surgery has helped Myles vision. 

The first afternoon home from the hospital (the day of surgery) he was looking at the computer screensaver from across the room and started pointing and jabbering excitedly, and it was hard to believe that he really could see it better.   Or was at least seeing the pictures better than he ever had.    We didn't realize just what all he was missing.   Myles was in the kitchen and I was in the living room and I called to him.  He looked at me, and I realized that he was actually seeing me. I was used to him cocking his head and looking my direction, but he was actually seeing me!  Gwen was in the kitchen in her high chair and he was in the living room and they started laughing and playing peekaboo.   He never interacted with her from that distance before, and we just now realized it's because he didn't have the vision to see her well enough at that range.

 Last night he was standing by the living room window when he started talking and pointing out the window.   I looked and saw that he was looking across the yard at the goats.   He NEVER would have done that before.   We just didn't realize how much he was missing.....

We are ever so thankful to God for the improvements we've seen, and we will appreciate your prayers as Myles continues to heal.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Fixing Myles Eyes

   As you probably knew, Myles has had crossed eyes nearly since birth.   So today he had surgery to straighten them out.

 The doctor said that everything went really well.    Since he had ITP, they were watching to make sure that he didn't bleed too much, and the surgeon said that he actually bled less than normal for this operation.  We actually weren't too concerned about that since his platelet count was up to 74,000. 

Myles slept for awhile since we got home, and took the rest of his bottle now that he woke up.  He is doing really well, although he looks rather awful.   We've seen a few smiles now, and he's playing on the floor with his blocks.  Pretty amazing all things considered, it's only 3 1/2 hours since he woke up from surgery. 

We went in this morning at 7:45, he went into surgery at 9:00.    At 10:00 they came and got us to tell us all had gone well and we got him back at about 10:15.   After an hour they left us go home, and we were home at 12:15.

As for the results?   We'll know in a few weeks just how well they actually did aligning his eyes.   As of now they look better, but maybe turn out a little rather than in as they did before.  But we really can't go off of how they look right now, only time will tell the actual success of the operation. 

Well, that's all I have for now, maybe there will be more later.

Friday, May 18, 2012

How do you like my new look? I took so much time doing that, that I don't have time to blog now.
  The babies are awake and need their breakfast and I need to start baking. Abbey is coming to see me this weekend... Yay!             JMB

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Myles in the Hospital

"Oh give thanks unto the Lord for he is good, for his mercy endureth forever."

It's been a long few days for our family. Last Wednesday we noticed that Myles had some bruises that seemed abnormal. He was bruising for seemingly no reason. He acted normal and we had an appointment at the doctor for him on Monday, so as we watched him for the next two days we thought we would just wait until Monday to have him seen.

Friday Morning.

Jenny loaded Gwen and Myles and headed to Lincoln with a friend for a day of shopping. As they exited the interstate on the west edge of town, Gwen threw up. All over everything. There was nothing to do but return home, and Jenny remarked to her friend, "I guess God doesn't want me to go to Lincoln today."

Reading about conditions that cause easy bruising that afternoon did nothing to calm Jenny's instinct that we should take Myles to the doctor. She talked to her mom who encouraged us strongly to have Myles seen. At 3:30 in the afternoon on Friday I called to the clinic, described the symptoms, and asked if there was any way we could see our doctor. The receptionist said no initially, but after talking to our doctors nurse told us to come right up.

They took a blood sample right away, the first of about a dozen pokes that Myles would get over the next 48 hours. The doctor didn't see us until she'd already seen the numbers, and when she came in she was more serious than we've ever seen her. It struck me as she began speaking that she was almost crying, but I dismissed that as a foolish thought since doctors don't do that.

She told us the Myles had an extremely low platelet count. She said it was at 12,000. We didn't know what that meant, so we asked what normal was. When she said normal was 150,000 we realized why she was so serious. She explained that if it gets below 10,000 it is considered very dangerous, as spontaneous bleeding can occur. If he should get any mild trauma to his head for instance, he would be in danger of internal bleeding on his brain.

Our doctor let us go home and shower before heading to the Childrens Hospital in Omaha, Ne. When we got there they took another blood count, and found his platelet level at 5,000. This was at about midnight. This doctor was clearly worried which made us even more scared. Their diagnosis was acute ITP. According to official US statistics, ITP occurs in 50 out of 1,000,000 children annually.

We were thankful to have Dave and Beth with us for those first few hours as we talked with doctors and tried to learn as much as we could about something we'd never heard of until a few hours before.

We held Myles all night as he was given the IVIG treatment. It was a long night.

By 5:00 the IVIG was done. By 5:30 they took a blood test. The platelet count was at 16,000, which was the first good news we heard. We also were told that the white blood cell count remained in the normal range, which was a strong indicator that this was not leukemia.

Saturday morning.

Myles was acting very good. By afternoon we hoped to go home if his platelet count reached 30,000. At about 4:30 Myles woke up from his nap and began throwing up. He had a fever which continued to rise. With Tylenol, the temperature peaked at 102.3. Myles couldn't keep anything down. The took another blood test which came back with a platelet count of 41,000 which was very good, but the white cell count was a bit high which caused us some worry. The doctors said he was fighting an infection and looked at him for quite awhile before deciding it may have been an ear infection. We continued to hold him and pray. By quarter til seven in the evening the nurse gave him some anti-nausea medicine in his IV port, and within a half hour he was holding food down and the fever broke. By midnight the fever was gone completely.

We had a much better night Saturday as far as sleeping went, since we were only woken up about three times by nurses checking vitals, and Myles was able to sleep too.

Sunday morning.

The platelet count was very good. 70,000. He was fever free since midnight, and the doctor looked him over and pronounced us free to leave.

We spent the rest of our day at home sleeping, and generally recovering. The weather was so nice that we were able to take the children out a little while.

Our sick baby boy. You can see bruises on his cheek and forehead which were caused by little falls any toddler will have.
In his crib. I never took any pictures of him when he was really looking and feeling sick, so he looks good in all these. You can see the bruising and dark circles around his eyes.
A sick little boy in his "jail cell". He was only in there after he was no longer at risk of spontaneous bleeding.
Gwen meanwhile was enjoying playing with her cousins. Her badge identifies her as Myles sister with visiting privileges.
Gwen was watched over by Matt and Amy, but ate lunch with us on Saturday here.
Sitting in the room with our visitors.
Sunday morning before Elv Grabers left for Wisconsin. We were SOOOO much better then.

Jenny met her niece Havilah for the first time over this episode.
Myles was happy to help do facebook updates when he was feeling good.
Back at home on Sunday afternoon, Gwen got some much needed attention from her parents.
Myles felt and looked way better, although his bruises are not completely gone. I still have my "parent" wristband in this picture.
Home, outside in the sunshine, and loving it.
Needless to say, Jenny and I are so glad to be home, and to have a healthy family all together under one roof again. We felt almost guilty as we thought about and saw the many other children and parents at the Children's Hospital whose problems are much bigger than ours, and whose stories may not have a happy ending. It's incredibly hard as a parent to see your child suffer, and not have the ability to give healing and take away pain. One text message of encouragement that we got read, "He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: He shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom." Isaiah 40:11.

We are so thankful to God for his mercy in healing our son. We are thankful for the many, many people who prayed for us and for Myles over this time. We are extremely grateful to have family who love us and help care for us when we're in need. Mom and Dad Burkey were very torn, as Dad was doing a series of meetings in Michigan, and they didn't know if they should return early or stay.

We hope and pray that this episode is a one time thing, and will not recur. We continue to praise God for his faithfulness to us. And we ask Him for the strength to go through whatever the future may bring, for we know that God always has the best in mind for his children.

"Oh give thanks unto the Lord for he is good, for his mercy endureth forever."

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Gwendolyn Singing

Here are a couple of videos of Gwen (aged about 23 months) singing. In this first video she sings Jesus Loves Me until she's distracted and throws in the word "camera". Then she sings "The Birds Upon the Treetops".

In this one she goes from "Jesus loves Gwendolyn" to "Itsy, Bitsy Spider", to "Running Over", which then changes to "I love you" directed at Myles, and then Mom.

Hope you enjoyed it!

P.S. I have no control of the videos that show up in the video box after the video has played....

A Few Pictures

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Happy Valentines Day!

...and happy anniversary to us! We've been married for three years now. God has been good to us and we look forward to many more years together! As you can see in the picture, we are still madly in love. You'll notice that there are no babies in this picture. Thank you Clark for taking this picture of just us even though it is silly and smoochy.

Thursday, February 9, 2012