She’s Here!!

LAH_1373.NEFWe interrupt this regularly scheduled blog to announce the arrival of our third granddaughter, Gwendolyn Elise. She was born this last Tuesday, March 25 to our younger daughter, her husband, and Gwen’s big sister Willow. As grandma, I’m totally stoked. Whoo hoo!!!!

Gwen’s arrival, besides being an occasion of great joy, was the culmination of months of waiting, praying, giving up, letting go and letting God—and being reminded that God does not disappoint.

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I’m Out of Control

I love to plan stuff. In fact, sometimes I enjoy the planning more than the actual event. The anticipation is exciting—like the thrill I felt as a kid, waiting for Christmas.

I’ll admit, I also enjoy planning and organizing things because it gives me the sense that I’m in control. Of course, I know better, but organizing lets me pretend for a while. And the more life throws me a curve ball, the more planning and organizing I do.

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Life & Death

Pete and I have spent much of the last week and a half in emergency rooms and hospitals. After years of gradual decline, my 91-year-old dad took a sudden nosedive. He’d been enjoying his new living arrangement, going to the hall parties, filling up on his favorite foods, smiling a lot. Then one day we went to see him and he was curled up on his bed refusing to get up. In spite of bed trays and persuasive nurses, he refused to eat or drink. Then he fell… and fell again, hitting his head.

While we’ve been anticipating this point for years, it was still a bit of a shock. Suddenly Pete and I were faced with huge decisions. Rather than create an advanced directive, where every possibility is considered and plans decided ahead of time, my dad had assigned the two of us joint “durable medical power of attorney.” The idea was that, knowing my dad and his end-of-life preferences, we would be able to flex according to the circumstances.

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Willow and Karin April 2013Babies. I definitely have babies on my mind this week.

Our granddaughter is visiting from the Pacific Northwest and I’m treasuring every moment. After 14 months, Willow’s parents have already lost a lot of sleep on her behalf. They’ve spent a fortune on medical bills (she was five weeks premature), baby furniture, clothes, diapers, and the gazillion other things a baby needs in our culture. And they’d do it all again, because they love her!

Our family went to a Chinese restaurant for lunch yesterday. Instead of ordering a whole meal for a baby, we each agreed to share some food off our plates. Willow enthusiastically gummed down everything from red bell peppers, tofu, and egg roll to mu shu pork and bits of scrambled egg and dried lilies fished out of my hot and sour soup. She ate a lot! Why would I give her so much of my lunch that I needed a snack when we got home? Of course, it’s because I love her!

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Grandma Brain?

Oh my, is it time for another post already? While I’m usually prepared ahead of time, I didn’t even think about posting something for today. Not until now.

I have the perfect excuse, however. Blame it on “grandma brain.”

After driving 1,400 miles, we’re finally here in Washington meeting our new granddaughter. For some reason I have totally lost track of what day it is. We’re learning that grandchildren are a bit distracting.

Anyway, I didn’t come up with anything profound or insightful today; I’m taking the day off. Instead, I’m offering visual proof of this tiny little girl that has us totally mesmerized. I’ll be back on schedule by Friday. I think.

Here she is, just a couple of weeks old and almost five pounds. Not bad for arriving five weeks early!

The orange tube was for supplemental feedings while she was still in the NICU, where she was when this photo was taken. (The tube was no longer needed by the time she finally came home, this past weekend.)

And here’s grandpa holding his granddaughter for the first time. You can see where she gets her hairstyle.


We’re all familiar with surprise birthday parties. Well, late Sunday night (and just in time for Mother’s Day), our daughter and son-in-law experienced a surprise birth! Yup, our new granddaughter arrived five weeks early, weighing in at 5 lbs, and measuring 17 inches. My husband and I are now grandparents. So far, it’s pretty amazing.

We’re in Colorado. Our daughter and her family live in Washington. We have yet to meet our grandchild. We’re definitely going to rectify that soon, but at this point we’ve only seen a couple of ultrasounds from the past eight months, a cell phone picture of her at less than an hour old, and I’ve heard her cry over the phone. Yet we already love her to pieces.

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