Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Fall Festivities

October has been crazy busy for us. We finally made it down to Fillmore to decorate Kate's grave site for Fall. Mia LOVES to play with and rearrange the decor. I was glad to finally get it up before the snow starts to fall. I must say that the cemetery, during the fall, is about the prettiest it gets all year round.

South Ridge Farms with IHH
We spent an evening at South Ridge Farms with IHH {Intermountain Healing Hearts} members and families. I love this place, especially the fresh apple cider and pumpkin ice cream. We took a hay wagon ride out to the pumpkin patch and picked out our prize pumpkin.

Miss Madison Turns "3!"
Mia's little friend, Madison, turned 3 and so we helped her celebrate at the Live Planet Aquarium. We have never been, so it was fun seeing all the fish and sea creatures.
Happy Birthday Maddy!
Checking out all the birthday loot!
Mia's favorite were definitely the Stingray.
It's a tradition in Bryan's family that during the Priesthood session of General Conference all the women and kids have a night out. This year we went to Hee Haw Farms. We have never been before and this place was so much fun. We started the night out by picking a pumpkin out of Grandma Rosenvall's pumpkin patch. This one was Mia's favorite pick!
We took a hay wagon ride out through the corn fields.....
.....and even took a ride in a rooster
Grandma Rich sure loved the hay wagon ride.

J + H = Happily Ever After!

Jordan and Hailey were married in the Salt Lake Temple on October 1st {yes I know....I am behind on posting}. The day was perfect. We are so happy to welcome sweet Hailey into our family. Here are a few pictures from the celebration:

They make a striking couple....don't you think?

Waiting for Uncle LoLo and Auntie Hailey.

This picture melts my heart....Tender!!

All the "Best" Men!

The Amigos and Amigas!

Cupcakes +...... More Cupcakes.........

= One hyper little Girl!!!

And they live Happily Ever After!!!!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Liver for LuLu!!!

We cannot even begin to express our gratitude for the outpouring of support to those who participated in Apple Fest this year. Our hearts are so touched with the generosity of those who donated to this benefit honoring our Sweet Angel Kate. We had originally planned to donate the proceeds to Primary Children's Medical Center. However, we feel fortunate to have the opportunity to donate on a more personal level this year.

Meet sweet little London (aka LuLu).
Isn't she a doll?

LuLu was born with Alpha 1 Anitrypsin Deficiency, a genetic disorder that causes liver and lung failure. Because of LuLu's declining health, the need for a liver transplant is necessary sooner than later. We know that the money raised through Apple Fest will be a big help to the family of LuLu with the anticipated medical expenses for her impending liver transplant. Again, thank you for all the support at Apple Fest this year and we look forward to another successful event next Fall (September 17-18, 2010).

For more information about sweet LuLu, visit: http://www.liverforlulu.blogspot.com/.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

A Sweet "Heart" Spotlight!

Bryan and I belong to a support group, Intermountain Healing Hearts, for families with children and adults with congenital heart defects and heart disease. I joined this group shortly after Kate passed away and I must say that it has been really hard for me to open up and express my feelings. However, having others who are going through or have gone through similar experiences has been therapeutic.

Every month IHH comes out with a newsletter spotlighting a "heart" friend. Last month, Kate was the spotlight and I wanted to share her "shining" story:

Sweet Kate, Kater Bugs, Bugaboo and Sissy was born on a beautiful HOT Summer morning, July 15, 2006. With no prior knowledge of any birth defects or a heart condition, Kate was transported to the NICU at Primary’s shortly after birth. During the 7-week initial stay, Kate was diagnosed with Tetrology of Fallot and later was given a diagnosis of Double Outlet Right Ventricle. Although Kate was full-term, she only weighed 4 lbs. 2 oz and heart surgery was too risky for how small she was. The doctors felt the success rate of the surgery would be greater if she could weigh at least 10 lbs. We were so excited to bring Kate home and help her grow. Dealing with oxygen, a feeding tube and A LOT of medications, we were determined to provide Kate with as normal life as possible. Kate experienced swimming, going to the zoo, museums and even a hay ride on Grandpa Roper’s farm. Kate had a keen sense of fashion and a head full of dark curly hair (thanks to sponge curlers). Kate loved it when mom would put the curlers in, but it was a “no-no” to play with her hair……and she would let you know that! At six months, Kate went in for her heart repair. After 12 LONG hours, the surgery was complete and seemed to be a success. Recovering in just 17 days, Kate came home and we were hopeful for some developmental progression and increased strength. Also having a rare genetic condition and not knowing what to expect for her future development, we were hopeful that the heart repair would allow her to start reaching some milestones. One great memory we have is Kate’s 1st birthday. During that first year, especially during those dreaded RSV months, we tried to limit as much exposure to sickness as we could, limiting exposure to family & friends. So when her birthday came around and she was fairly stable, we thought it would be appropriate to have a big celebration. This ended up being much more than we had planned on. With close to 100 of Kate’s friends and family, it was a lot of fun. Having feelings of going a bit overboard, looking back we were so glad we did it because it ended up being Kate’s first and only birthday. We wanted to provide Kate with the best quality of life as possible. However, as she grew, her muscles and heart were not able to keep up with her growing body. She started experiencing seizures, which would cause her to stop breathing. Primary’s became her second home, spending over 5-months in and out of the hospital. She was so loved by all who cared for her. I must say that Kate was quite pampered during her stays……having her nails painted, ribbons and bows in her hair at all times and even an occasional massage (with that darn Oscillator). We knew that the only way for Kate to get out of the hospital and hopefully stay out was for her to have a Tracheotomy. This was an extremely tough decision, but we wanted to do all we could, medically, to keep her here with us. Boy, what a challenge. But, we had wonderful help from family and also home nursing.
Kate endured many surgeries and experienced much physical pain over the course of her short little life. As a parent, you want to do anything and everything for your children. Through our religious beliefs, we believe all things have purpose and we know that we will see her again. As much as we did all we could to help our sweet little Kate, we believe she helped us more than we could’ve ever helped her. We always said, “Kate had the biggest heart of anyone we know,” and in reality she did.
Four weeks after Kate’s passing, we welcomed a healthy baby girl, Mia, to fill our empty arms. We want to keep Kate’s memory alive, not only for us, but for Mia and our future children. This past fall, we organized a charity 5k run, in memory of Kate. The proceeds of the event went to Primary Children’s. We hope to keep this new tradition alive. Having Kate in our lives has made us better people. We miss her so much but feel so blessed to have our very own guardian angel watching over us.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

"August and Everything After...."

Back to the Ol' Stompin' Grounds!

It's been 14 years since Bryan served his mission in North Carolina and he hasn't been back to visit until now. Since Michelle's sister and family live in NC, we both decided to kill 2 birds with 1 stone and visit the beautiful state of NC. We spent one day hitting all the places that Bryan served. He served over a year in Durham and wanted to see if he could find his apartment. We spent some time driving around familiarizing himself with the area and then Bingo.......we found it. We also drove to Raleigh to see the new Temple. It was absolutely beautiful. I'm a HUGE fan of doing destination races so we signed up and participated in the Salem Lakes trail run. It rained the entire time we ran. I'm typically not a fan of running in the rain, but it wasn't pouring and actually created a nice little mist. I wish I would've taken more pictures because this lake was beautiful. We didn't stay for the awards ceremony after the race, but later found out that Michelle and I both placed 1st in our age division. Not too shabby!Teresa and Scott (Michelle's sister & brother-in-law) taking a photo of taking a photo! Visiting NC this time of year is a MUST. It is so lush and green and with the leaves starting to change, it was absolutely breathtaking. We spent a day driving to the Smokey's.
This photo was taken on Grandfather Mountain.

John, Michelle and Finn
As much fun as we had, we were both very excited to get back to Miss Mia!

Apple Fest 2009

Morgan sure has the Apple Fest Spirit!!!

I'm embarrassed that it has taken so long to report on Apple Fest this year. We had an absolute BLAST and are are already looking forward to next year. We had such a great turnout and and are so appreciative of the many generous people that came out to support this great cause. We didn't have the "Kate Rosenvall Foundation" set up for this year, but are working on having it in place for next year. Since our daughter Kate spent so much of her short little life at Primary Children's Medical Center, we want to donate the proceeds of Apple Fest each year to something special; whether it's something the hospital is in need or to help a family(s) who are in need of financial help for medical bills. We are so excited for the turnout we had and the many, many donations that were given. A HUGE "Thank You" to all those who participated in Apple Fest this year as well as all the many volunteers who helped make this event happen. Stay tuned for the donation grand total.

We kicked off Friday night with a dutch oven dinner and live entertainment by "Switchback" playing anything from Lynyrd Skynyrd to ACDC. The food was great, the entertainment was great, fun was had by all.

Uncle Greg made a great dancing partner.

Hampshire's got some smooth moves!!

This year we added a 10k and children's 1 mile run in addition to the 5k. There were close to 100 participants this year.

Teresa and Zach coming in strong!

The Nielsen Crew!

Kirstin and Weston........we sure did miss Motley this year!

Face painting sure was a favorite by all. Is that Tyson or Tanner??? Not quite sure who this handsome little skeleton is!

We look forward to seeing you next year!!!!