Monthly Archives: August 2008

Ok, you asked for this one…


Hey, I have friends all over the political spectrum, and I want to keep you all.  I am a firm believer that who we vote for and why we vote for that person is intensely personal, and I know for myself it is rarely an easy, cut and dried decision.  That said, I won’t be endorsing, or not endorsing, just reporting. 

So, it’s a big day for the Republican party, and a HUGE day for Alaska.  The first woman to be on a Republican national ticket, and she is from Alaska of all places. 

I gotta tell you, the air here in Anchorage (and I would imagine all of Alaska) is totally electric.  It is pretty exciting to have someone from “home” making this kind of news, no matter what your party. 

 This is what I know.  Alaska loves Sarah Palin, polls put her approval ratings at 80%+.  Most of the people we have talked to over the last month feel she has done a good job, that she is a good person.  During the time she was mayor of Wasilla, the town we lived in prior to moving to the Midwest, she brought a lot of new development to the area, and I don’t remember a lot of controversy.  And I can tell you this:  she has really nice parents.   We attended church with them for several years (and yes, during that time, met Sarah on more than one occasion).  That is the extent of my personal knowledge of Sarah Palin.

Now let me tell you what I think about McCain’s choosing Palin:  It is an inspired choice. (no matter what side of the aisle you come down on, it is a gutsy move).

 I have been saying for a long time (since Palin was elected Gov about 2 years ago, ask my mom, or my friend Kathie Bouchard, they have heard this many times), that she is a gift to the Republican party.  No doubt about it, she is the fresh face the party has been waiting for.  Lay it out…  she is young, attractive, a mother, her husband was a stay at home dad for a time so she could pursue her career, she takes on corruption, she is pro gun, pro oil, pro life,  she hunts, fishes, she has a son in the military, the list goes on and on. 

So, from that perspective she is the best choice for McCain to try and capture some of the excitement that has been generated with Obama’s charisma and charm.   Do I think this choice wraps up the election for the Republicans?  Naw.  I think it means that the Republican party is not completely dead in this race, and I think it means the Democrats are going to have to work a little harder to keep the momentum going.  I think it will make the race a lot more interesting, at least from an Alaska point of view. 

It will be fun to see what people around here do in the coming months.  I am guessing we will not see too many McCain/Palin yard signs and bumper stickers, but knowing Alaskans, we will see loads of Palin/McCain signs, Alaska pride runs deep.


16 years of wedded bliss…


hard to believe.  I think I must have been about 12 when I got married, because I certainly don’t feel like I am nearly old enough to have been married this long. 

No big party here this year, but you can bet we are celebrating.  Marriage, health, it all seems a little sweeter this time around.  

I am so thankful for our marriage, it is a good one.  Lots of work, but good nonetheless.  God has truly watched over us all these years, and we are certainly blessed.

It has been a week now…


and Dave is up and moving, kind of slowly, but he is moving.  He has gone into the office the last couple of days and that has been good.  He likes having something to do. 

The pathology reports have come back, and it seems that all the bad stuff has been removed and there are “clean margins”.  This is wonderful news, again.  God is good.  We meet with the surgeon a week from Monday to find out more specifics.  In the meantime, we are enjoying this little bit of extra family time.  It is a slower pace than we are used to, and that is just fine. 

The first few days after surgery were pretty rough.  Dave was in ALOT of pain.  He really didn’t move from the couch, except to get to the bathroom, and as you can imagine, that was pretty traumatic.  So, then it was a couple of pain pills and back to the couch for a few more hours before getting up to repeat the process over again. 

Dave doesn’t have to return to full duty at work until Sept 9th, and that is great.  We will find all sorts of things to fill our time.  He still can’t lift anything over 5 pounds, and can’t exercise for several weeks, but he can tell me what needs to be done and he is a relentless taskmaster, so you can bet that the house will be in perfect order before he gets back to work. 

It would be a good time for you to come and visit!



So, Dave had surgery on Thursday.  And it went really really really well.  During the pre-op chat we were told that this could be long one, and if it was going to run longer than 3 hours he would get word to me so I wasn’t concerned.  The risks were significant:   perforated rectum, bleeding, even removal of the rectum if it looked worse than originally thought. 

So I was surprised to see him saunter out the waiting area just short of 2 hours later.  Surgery had only taken about 1.5 hours and went  “better than I dared to hope” (Dr’s words).   He believes that the entire tumor was removed.  This was not expected.  It has changed the outlook dramatically, we are now in a situation where further surgery is a possibility, and NOT a probability.  This is wonderful wonderful wonderful news. 

The tumor was “massive”, but now it is gone.   Sent off for more testing.  We will get the pathology reports next week. 

Dave is still out of it.  He is home now and resting.  Worn out, physically and emotionally.  It is hard to see him like this, flat out and pale, kind of gray-ish skin tone. 

He gets to take it easy for the next couple of weeks and when he comes out of the pain med induced stupor, that is going to drive him nuts.  Don’t stop praying for him just yet.

And speaking of prayer: 


for all the emails and phone calls and cards. 

and the prayers.  God heard those, and answered, in a big way.  And we are so thankful. 

We are all tired, the first week of school wore out the boys, Sunny has worn out Auntie Megan, life has worn out me. 

I want to write about all the little things that have happened over the last 48 hours.  But I can’t right now.   Kids want to watch a movie, and they have had a very distracted mama as of late.  It’s time to sit and cuddle with them.

Big day tomorrow…


Tomorrow (Wednesday), is a big day here at the Lawrence house.  The boys start  school and Dave meets with the surgeons tomorrow afternoon to find out what to expect on Thursday.  We are all a little tense and on edge. 

The kids are stressed out about school, it is a new school, and they will be doing an intensive language program, and they have to wear uniforms, and the nutritional guidelines dictate that they can’t take cookies or candy in their lunch.  I really have no idea how they are going to survive that particular rule.  Cookies are a staple around here. 

Dave is stressed about surgery, and life after.  Or lack of life, as the conversation keeps turning to wills and who will help me with the kids etc. Who would take the kids if both of us die.  Not really cheery topics. 

We will drop the kids off early and then it will be off to hit the gym.  Then Dave and I will meet with the surgeons and Megan will take Sunny out for some Auntie fun.  Then Megan will pick up the boys and bring them back to the house. 

Tomorrow night we will hang out here, waiting for Thursday morning.  And praying.

Next time you see me you better tell me my rear end looks good…


Because all this pain has to translate into some kind of reward.

I can’t lift my arms above my head or go up or down stairs or laugh without severe pain, but my stress level is a lot lower than it was a week ago.  Probably because I am too tired to think. 

Tomorrow we work more leg and arms.  And do the hour of cardio my crazy sister in law insists on.

Fortunately she leaves Wednesday. 

No, really I am thankful for the diversion.  And it feels kind of good to work this hard.

And I think she is trying to kill me…


Auntie Megan is a competative weightlifter.  I am not.  So when she said, “Hey Sandie, let’s go find a gym and work out.”  I should have run, far far away.  But no, I said “okay”.  Because I am an idiot.

2 hours later , battered, sweat soaked, hardly able to lift my legs, or arms, or head, I dragged my near-corpse across the parking lot and collapsed into the front seat of the beloved Honda minivan. 

Megan, bounces out of the gym, and says: “that was great, what time are we going tomorrow?”