Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Snowbound Squeaky

Here are the pics of Caroline in the snow...don't you just love the mismatched hat! That is the only hat she will leave on her little head..little stinker!

Caroline's first time in the snow

We are blessed to have some awesome neighbors here. Our favorite neighbors are Jaime and Steve who have two little girls who are 5and 2. Matthew loves playing with the "guys" and I love hanging out with Jamie. She is a great sounding board and is always great about helping me out if I need anything from someone to watch the kids last minute to a cup of sugar. Yesterday morning we were having a playdate and talked about needing to take the kids outside for some playing in the snow time. Matthew was quite the bear yesterday and honestly I didn't want to do anything that required effort on my part with him by 4pm. But, Jamie called and we bascially talked ourselves into it. I bundled up Caroline and we took her out too. She wasn't so sure, she could barely walk but I think she enjoyed it. I will post pictures later. Matthew, that little crazy at one point lost his boots and was running in the snow in thin socks for almost five minutes before I noticed. I told Jeff it scares me how much that kid can take. I mean his little tootsies had to have been freezing. I asked Jeff if he thought he had a sensory disorder. Jeff thinks he is so smart that he knew if I discovered the missing boots that I might make him go in so better to just run around in socks! Strange little man...
Caroline is sick again! She has had lots of iccky poops and an incredibly sore bottom. She screams in terror as you change her and for about twenty minutes afterwards. She also has a fever..I feel like she can't catch a break.
This weekend I am going to Chicago for a friend's babyshower. I am super excited to see her and some other friends I have seen in awhile and of course to have a kid free day and night! Am I horrible for admitting this??:(

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Family Fun

This weekend Jeff's twin sister Jenny was in town. We went over to Barb's house on Saturday for the day. We also went over after church for a big dinner and more playing. Matthew is sitll not napping but going to be at like 6 because he is absolutely exhausted. Matthew and Caroline had so much fun playing with Derek and Jessica and Allison. Jessica and Allison took them outside in the snow. Jessica didn't have her gear so one of the pictures is of her doning grandma's shoveling attire. We also found out that we are going to have a new niece or nephew in October! Jenny is pregnant. Its kind of weird b/c Derek and Matthew are only 3 days apart and the new baby is due a day after Caroline's birthday!

Thursday, February 21, 2008


We received the news last night that Eric Hanson was found guilty in the murders of his mother, father,sister and brother in law. Its my prayer that the people's lives that have been deeply destroyed and forever altered may begin to heal now that they know he will spend the rest of his life behind bars.

Here is an article...
Eric Christopher Hanson was born into a family of privilege, the youngest child and only son of two high school sweethearts.

But, instead of honoring the two people who gave him life, the Naperville man stole tens of thousands of dollars in an elaborate credit card scheme in their names.

Hanson admits being a thief, but he argued that does not make him a cold-blooded killer.

A DuPage County jury did not agree.

After three hours of deliberations, jurors swiftly convicted Hanson late Wednesday of killing his parents,sister and her husband in late September 2005 in a murderous rampage discovered in the affluent White Eagle subdivision on Aurora's far-east side.

Hanson was convicted of all counts of first-degree murder, armed robbery, aggravated kidnapping and identity theft.

The jury of eight men and four women listened to more than 50 witnesses and considered about 415 pieces of physical evidence during 10 days of testimony before rendering its verdict. The panel's work, though, if far from over in the death penalty case.

DuPage Circuit Judge Robert Anderson instructed members to return Thursday morning to decide whether Hanson is eligible for capital punishment and whether to impose it. If so, Hanson will become the 14th condemned man on Illinois' death row.

The verdict ends the first phase of a hard-fought trial. DuPage Public Defender Robert Miller argued prosecutors lack a confession, both murder weapons and, despite two crime scenes with four bodies, a single hair, fiber, fingerprint or shoe print or other forms of DNA placing Hanson at either location. In fact, seven unidentified partial bloody shoe prints found at his sister's home were not traced back to Eric.

"Tell me how Eric committed a mass murder without leaving one bit of evidence that a 21st-century crime lab could not detect?" Miller asked.

The murderous rampage was discovered Sept. 29, 2005, in the home of Katherine "Kate" Hanson-Tsao and her husband, Jimmy, in Aurora.

Kate, 31, and her 34-year-old husband were fatally bludgeoned in their home, likely at 10:43 p.m. Sept. 28, 2005, the final keystroke on Jimmy's laptop, found lying near him.

Prosecutors said 57-year-old Terrance Hanson and his wife, Mary, 55, were shot a short time later in their Naperville home, where Eric also lived. The elder couple's bodies, each clad in sleeping attire and lying on a painter's drop cloth, were transferred to Kate's home five miles away.

Police did not find signs of forced entry to either home; valuables weren't touched.

The existence of a second crime scene in Naperville was crucial in the trial because Hanson placed himself in the home that night. He told jurors he was sleeping downstairs and didn't hear a disturbance.

Police said they discovered a bloodstained mattress; a fired bullet in the attic, which is on the other side of a wall behind the headboard to the Hansons' bed; and evidence someone used a drill and wood filler to cover the headboard's bullet hole.

"I guess someone else sneaked into that house while he was sleeping and murdered the parents whom he was stealing from," prosecutor Robert Berlin said. "Who else has a motive to clean up and make it look like the murders didn't happen in that house?"

Police also found bloodstains elsewhere in the bedroom and in the passenger seat of Mary Hanson's Saturn SUV.

Detectives had developed Hanson as a suspect within an hour. His other sister,Williams, who lives in Minnesota, identified her brother and said he had threatened to kill Kate six weeks earlier if she told their father about the credit card fraud.

Hanson, though, denied making the threat. But prosecutors presented a jailhouse letter he later wrote to his cousin in which he admits threatening Kate.

Hanson told jurors both his parents knew and agreed to let him pay the money back without police involvement.

Police arrested Hanson one day after the grisly discovery after he returned from a one-day trip in Los Angeles to visit his ex-fiancee. Officers found Kate's $24,000 wedding ring and Jimmy's Rolex watch in his sport-utility vehicle.

Hanson explained he simply was returning the jewelry, but didn't get a chance before his trip. He couldn't explain another piece of evidence crucial to the prosecution.

Hanson told jurors he had no idea how a rubber glove with his father's blood ended up in a zipped plastic bag, along with three other gloves,in his SUV.

The prosecution team - Berlin, Michael and Nancy Wolfe - argued the financial motive, timeline, GPS technology, and the other evidence such as the bloody glove and Hanson's multiple lies were overwhelming proof.

Miller and Elizabeth Reed, a senior assistant defender, contend police zeroed in on Hanson from the onset, never considering any other possible suspect.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Allergy girl update

I almost forgot to post about Caroline's allergy apppointment on Monday. It went well but it turns out she is indeed allergic to peanuts and eggs. At least it wasn't that huge list of items that the ped office initially told me. The bad news is we have to take all peanut products out of our house and Matthew basically exists on PB&J's so that isn't going to be fun. I did buy some Almond Butter today, I am not sure if it will go over well, it looks eekie and its $8 for a small container. But, the doctor warned with peanut allergies one time you may just get a swollen lip and eye and the next time could be anaphelytic death...scary. We do have epi pens in the house and we know how to use them and we tell everyone who cares for the kids about it but you just can't be too safe.
Both the kids have bouts with the "runs" as of late. Caroline since Sunday, Matthew began today..yipee! Plus, Matthew has boycotted naps the last five days! Good thing I love those little stinkies so much!!


Snow, rain...water in your basement!

Is the end coming or what? What is up with this weather!! After endless days of snow and ice came the flood like rains of Sunday. Jeff mentioned that he hoped we wouldn't get water in our basement. Of course, he never checked it out..bad hubbie! Anyways, I was playing with the kids down here yesterday when Matthew wanted a box, when I picked it up I noticed it was soaking wet. I then discovered two areas that were pretty saturated on either side of the playroom and computer room. Thankfully, its not a huge area but we can't really figure out where the water is coming from without ripping out much of the drywall. We have it nearly dried out but it does concern me. Ahh, the joys of homeownership and midwest living.
Bible study last night was AWESOME again. I had a total Ah ha moment. In the discussion portion I disclosed how sometimes I struggle with prayer b/c I feel like although God hears me I feel like His mind is made up and that it seems like suffering is more His plan than not. I feel badly for thinking this but I do feel like this. Well, in the video portion Beth Moore spoke directly to this and obviously refuted that. She literally said, "For those of you out there on the otherside of this screen who feel like God is going to do what he is going to do so what difference would your prayer make, your mistaken." I literally got shivers. I can't say enough about what this study has meant to me. I have been educated and moved more from these five weeks than ever before.
Hope everyone is having a fabulous week!


Saturday, February 16, 2008

New Clothes

Last night I had fun buying new clothes for the first time in almost 10 years!! Lane Bryant, a plus size store just moved out of the mall and into a strip mall. I went over for their "grand opening" on Friday night and found myself amongst many, many women. Apparently to celebrate their big move everything in the store was 40% off. It was not great timing b/c Jeff and I had plans to go out for dinner and I literally had to get back home within a 1/2 hour. So, I grabbed a bunch of stuff and bought it to take home and try on. When Jeff and I were finished with dinner we had some time to kill and we went back to return the stuff that didn't work and pick up some other items. It was so much fun. Having choices. Something that I didn't want to admit but it was true. Before I started losing weight I had none! I was pretty much wearing the same five things over and over this past year. It gives me such incentive to make the right choices and forgo the items that aren't what I should be eating. I like feeling attractive again! Now for my next get out of Lane Bryant and into Ann Taylor! Everytime I have been in that store (usually to buy a giftcard or with a friend who shops there) I feel like they are looking at me like "Sorry sister, your too big for Ann!" and thats if they even speak to me. I have been in there where they just plain ingnore me!I am going to be like Pretty Women when she goes back to Rodeo Drive after they dissed her and say, "Remember me? I am buying a whole new wardrobe, big mistake..huge!":)
Hee hee!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

The perfect valentine

Today, being that its the big Valentines day, I was struck with how when we seek God assistance, He perfectly matches us with our spouses. I started thinking about this as I was sitting amongst the couples in my small group last night. We were talking about adultery and it ended up being a pretty interesting conversation. I could never imagine cheating on Jeff. There would have to be many poor decisions made before that would happen. But, I see the importance of guarding your marriage and protecting it. Anyways, as I looked around to the couples I thought how perfect they were with each other. They compliment each other so well. I am grateful for a good husband and marriage. So many people are not nearly as fortunate.
Here are my top five reasons for being in love with my husband this Valentines day

1. His unwavering devotion to me and the kids
2. His incredible patience with me when I am downright psychotic
3. His great fiancial sense which keeps us on the right path
4. His great sense of humor that keeps me laughing on the crazy days
5. His laid back personality totally compliment my "not so laid back" tempermant
In other news, today the kids and I hosted a playgroup/Valentines day party for two of my girlfriends I hardly see. It was fun. We made pizzas, finger painted with red paint and of course played. The kids all did really well! Tommorrow we have another playdate with some GR friends who are coming to town. Then tommorrow night Jeff and I are going out to dinner. The best part is that I won a gift certificate to a local resturant so it will be free...gotta love that!

Monday, February 11, 2008


Well, after a trecherous drive up to the big ol' GR in which I thought my husband might kill me because I kept pumping my "imaginery"breaks and saying, "They're breaking, they're breaking, slow down!" I had my procedure to check out my throat and new gut. It seems I don't have a stricture after all. I did have quite a bit of inflamation at the site of the staple line so he removed some of them. Apparently they dissolve on their own but he helped it out while he is there. He basically said it takes the stomach some time to retrain its self and that basically right now the muscle, which is what your stomach is entirely made up of, is freaking out. Mildly annoying b/c the PA's and nutrionists talk a different game and act completly horrified at the thought of how little I am able to eat. Bottom line: I must get more protein in, even if that means choking down the ol' shakes. Yuckaroo!
Oh well! The procedure itself went well, they gave me a nice sedative and then a drug that makes you completly forget what happened...spooky! I was pretty groggy when I awoke, my legs felt as if they were made of lead. I snoozed the whole way home and feel normal now. Busy week here in Simpson land. Doctors apt, MOPS, Valentines parties and kind of week! Enjoy yours!

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Dentists and doctors

Matthew went to the dentist for the first time this week. He did really well. I was afraid that the dentist would yell at me for still allowing him to have his pacies but he did not. We are at least thinking about starting to get rid of them, that has to count for something right!
I went for my 6 week check up in Grand Rapids yesterday. I am officially 54 pounds less than when I began this journey on December 3! One discouraging thing is I have been really nauseous alot and throwing up too much. I know, TMI! They think I may have a stricture, which is a narrowing of the connection between the intenstine and stomach. So, even less food can get in. Now, I know this will sound weird but part of me doesn't mind it, the nausea and throwing up. I have grown use to it I guess. But, I also know if I keep it up I will end up malnourished and bald! Not a pretty picture! So, they will go in next week with a scope and blow it open a little further. I of course asked what happens if they make it too big? Apparently that doesn't happen. I am just hoping it makes eating a little less awful and I can continue to move on but in a healthier manner.
This weekend is pretty quiet. Jeff is of course working today. Tonight our nieces are coming over for a movie night. Tommorrow we have nursery duty and then I am going to our high school's production of "Thoroughly Modern Millie " with some friends and out to dinner.
Hope your having a great weekend!

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Getting so big

I was looking at pictures of the kids today and I can't believe how big they are getting. Caroline will be 16 months old next week! Where has the time gone!? I still think of her as being a newborn. Matthew is getting so tall..he has such a big imagination. I think we played baby Jesus and Moses all day! This morning he said to me, "Mommy, tell me about Jesus and the Bible" too cute! My mom thinks maybe he will be a pastor. Hmm..can Pastors have really bad tempers???:)

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

The walls are closing in on us...

Do you ever feel like that in the winter? When I was younger I couldn't wait for a snow day so I could sleep in, watch tv and hang out with friends. We are currently getting a mix of snow and ice, nice! I am eagerly looking forward to Spring! Here are some pictures of the kids in the their favorite spot, the basement toyroom.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

I hate tax season

My mom always said you should never hate anything...ok, I really, really, really dislike tax season almost to the point of hate! hee hee! I use to say that to her all the time! Saturdays are a real struggle for me. The day drags on and on and my patience begins at about -9 so that isn't good for me or the kids! Today we went to Lowes to buy some new doorknobs. Our laundry room knob isn't opening and its a real pain b/c we keep it closed otherwise Caroline gets into things in there. That girl is obsessed with shoes. She just like collecting them and carrying them around. Anyways,Matthew is having a very off, naughty day so I should have known better than to venture out but sometimes I just need to get stuff done. I wish we could replace all our doorknobs,they are quite dated, but we will start with two and go from there. I had a giftcard that I thought had over $30 on it but apparently one of us used it b/c when I went to check out it only had a balance of $2! So, what I originally thought was going to cost$25 ended up costing over $50. Mr. Budget..aka Jeff will not pleased about this. He seems to think a little WD40 would have fixed it..whatever! Jeff is such a procrastinator when it comes to fixing and doing household stuff so I had to take matters into my own hands!
Tonight Jeff is going out with some friends. He needs to! That poor guy never gets out and working two jobs essentially right now has to get old. I have to remember that and not wollow in my own "poor me" attitude. There is nothing poor me about my life!!
Tommorrow we're going to a Super Bowel party. Matthew is going to help me make a chocolate cake..he loves helping. Its pretty cute.
Hope your enjoying your weekend!