Sunday, April 27, 2008

Saturday, April 26, 2008


Today we achieved another landmark- the boys being able to play outside without being in direct view of mama (or tetis). Though at age 4 it is something we expected would happen, today was the first that Erik was comfortable going out to play with his brother in the back yard.

He propped the outside door of the building open. And he wanted us to leave the apartment door unlached as those two door do lock. And then he seemed to be ok. We are on the first floor and so they went in and out and in and out... you get the picture.

Yesterday the boys and I went to LCC for the end of semester BBQ- hotdog roast. It was an adventure on the bus with two of them and the large ball they wanted to play with.

Sometime when blogger will allow for pictures I will add a few. But just now, I cannot upload the one of David eating an LCC hotdog!

I guess it is now spring. The days are warmer, there are some early flower and some trees are beginning to get the tinest of leaves coming out. And the heat went off on Friday afternoon. (Our next apartment has its own heat system we can self regulate- which will be convenient. Now our natural source of drying out clothes on the radiators is gone, so we keep hoping for good weather and chances to put many things outside)

Thursday, April 24, 2008

nepaliksi manes? (You aren't going to leave me?)

After our day away in Nida the other week we got the question at each new activity or temporary parting- you aren't going to leave me? Mostly it was Erik but when David also asked that got me attention. It could be that he was copying the concern of his brother.

But it seems the concern about that is passing. Or maybe it is just more under the surface. Both boys are a bit more clingy to mama lately.

I got results from the blood test for me, saying there are no allergies that showed up. Next Tuesday i will see the allergy doc. for any further counsel.

And we have a list of blood tests and so on for the boys and for me before going to the doc in Vilnius. Need to work on them over the next few days. Seems another long holiday is coming up. May 1 is a holiday and I notice a number of people marking callendars off May 1-5!

We have the other documents needed now- other than the medical clearances to proceed to embassy interviews.

On Monday we should get a key to the next apartment and can start the move!

Monday, April 21, 2008

update on Sharon's health

I'm getting some comments that it is hard to follow what is going on with my health through the blog.

So here it is.
My first concern was my stiff and sore finger joints. It changes some but continues to be and issue at night and on first awaking. So that is why the testing by rheumatologist- only to find nothing conclusive in terms of arthritis. Thus the referral to see ENT and see if infection might be the cause.

ENT recommended tonsillectomy (inflamed throat and tonsils seen to be possible contributor to joint problems), allergy work up and endoscopy (tube down your throat to check stomach).

Allergy work up so far did not explain the winter symptoms but the blood work result should come in this Thursday. Nasonex has done wonders for the post-nasal drip and throat cleared quickly for the most part.

Endoscopy happened today, mild irritation of tube to stomach from reflux of acid. Medication prescribed, but not too serious.

Will see another Dr. in Vilnius (Australian Lithuanian with private practice) on May 6 whom I have seen before in the pre-adoption screenings. (He will also need to evaluate the boys for US embassy medical approval). Prior to that I will get some testing done and take results to him.

Due to our moving and soon departure from Lithuania for summer travel, I put off surgery. Maybe after a different schedule and some assistance in attending to the boys the stress level will be less and symptoms will melt away.

Not sure, the joint symptoms are as troublesome as they were, but my old PT training just tells me it is arthritis on the way. Would that we would be able to prevent it though!

Saturday, April 19, 2008


Earlier this week David Augenijus and I were out in the morning and his facination with tractors was fed by the offer to sit in the one we were watching. The driver even took his hands on the controls and he "helped" lift piles of dirt!

The boys went to a birthday party last night. It was a bit of a risk for mama... Gregg was away for the evening. Watching the 2 of them in a new environment with lots of people and many new things to explore is a bit stressful. But all in all it went well.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008


We have decided on the apartment that we saw after meeting with the owners Sunday night. It will have much more space than where we live now. We are looking forward to that and realize now that we have been stressed out by being in cramped quarters.

Yet there was something we liked about being here too. The center location has been quite nice. And getting to the park is really very easy from here. Since the boys could be outside more, it does not seem quite as cramped.

We will gradually move things there starting finals week after Gregg gives his final that Monday. And we have until May 11 when we will be out... and on our way to Warsaw and the USA.

I called to finally cancel the surgery that was going to be this coming Friday. My throat and general health has improved noticably in the last couple of weeks. (Thank you for all who have been praying about this!)

I still have stiffness in my fingers at night, but I will think about that more again in a month when we have set our feet down in the USA (and maybe I can rest a little).

We are going to be able to live a little more environmentally friendly now that we are not taking buckets of diapers out anymore! It has been 2 days of no accidents, even at night. THere will still be some here and there but it is quite different that it was a month ago! It just seems that when it was time it happened quickly.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

"retreat" weekend

Well our schedule usually includes one weekend away with other Eastern Mennonite mission team members in the spring. This year we planned a more simple option with our more complex situation in mind and stayed in Klaipeda, hosting team member Barry here.
We did not spend all of the time together as Barry had some friends to see, and we also had some work commitments that were hard to get around. But we did arrange to get away on Saturday.
The boys got to stay with family friends in Klaipeda. Each of them in a differnt place. And it seems that worked very well. They played hard and missed naps so they were tired and it showed later on, but we were very happy it worked so well.
The boys were happy to see us when we returned but had not been distressed that we were gone. And they listened well aparently to their hosts.
Our trip was to the unique Nida dunes and quaint town. Seems like a desert and we climbed a lot of steps to get up to the top. We've been before but it is just such a unique place that it seemed like a breath of fresh air.

In Silute today we were happy to see a larger group. And as you see from the picture, mama had her hands full at one point! A LCC student that we know over the last 2+ years had the message today. We thought it went well.

Thursday, April 10, 2008


This post is about the mixed up language we have in our family for the time being. The newest which did really make me laugh was today when David Augenijus said Noriu painti. He seems to understand the LT grammar that at the end of verbs is "ti" most of the time. So he wanted to paint= painti.

Another- mano ride bike. Neither of the boys gets the idea that ride bike includes a verb. So my bike is mano ride bike.

And from all the different language going back and forth, mama and tetis have a hard time not mixing two languages in one sentence.

We are using a lot more English now but with the boys answering in Lithuanian our brains get it mixed too.

But sometimes they get it right. Like "I'm finished".

In other news, our blog is read by people in many places and last night we were contacted by one of you offering to pick us up as we fly into DC and bring us to PA. That will help us not to worry about catching the flight coming through immigration with the boys- and keep us from waiting 6 hours longer in the airport for the last flight of the day. We are blessed to see how God provides.

Now we are hoping for His good provision in housing and wisdom as we look at one half house on Friday.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

but first we move

Last night we got the final word- we do need to move before leaving for the USA because the landlady needs the apartment by July 1 and we are gone at that time.

So, there is a lot to do in the next 4 weeks! (but, hey, I did it in less than 2 weeks notice before- but without children)
and one thing that we do not have time for is this surgery. I have become less sure it is the thing to do with every passing day.

Today I also got a panoramic xray of my teeth to be sure nothing infectious is going on there. And I have it in hand for 50 Litas. Though that is not a small sum in the eyes of local people, it is quite a fraction of what I remember paying 5 years ago in the USA.

I will probably do an update to this post after seeing the allergy doctor this afternoon.

So the update is...
The basic testing shows definite allergy to all that blooms in June. And they ruled out household dust (which was a possibility in my mind considering how dust accumulates quickly here) But that does not answer the question of why winter symptoms. So more extensive testing through blood test is needed.

The other update is...
We are getting tickets to fly to the states on the 14th of May.
And there is a half of a house in the northern end of Klaipeda for us to consider in the moving decision.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

coming to USA

We were in the process of ordering our tickets for expected end of May visit to USA when we discovered that the summer season begins already the middle of the month.
So we don't have a definite date but it looks it will be earlier, before the 15th.

We anticipate being based at Gregg's parents' home in Manheim again. And from there have visits to NJ as well as some special time at his parents' condo in Wildwood NJ. That should be quite the experience with a family.

The boys are still battling coughs. And mama is working to get her strength back.

And the medicine that was given for sinuses and allergy symptoms has made quite a difference such that there is no longer any throat discomfort and it seems little immediate evidence to go through surgery at least not now. With the upcoming travel coming it would also not be best to complicate things. And at the end of the semester it was going to make life really complicated for Gregg and the boys, and the amount of help we could anticipate from LCC folks. But the allergy testing seems like a very good idea.

We have had quite a few days worthy of riding bike (up until rain today). And the boys do well enough that I can let them go with a student babysitter too. This feels like good progress.

We were in Silute as usual for Sunday service and a family we know from LCC were guests. We went to our favorite kids friendly restaurant afterward.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008


The doctors here think that a tonsillectomy is needed to address chronic infection of my tonsils. And I need allergy testing and GI testing. My throat tells a story I've been ignoring I guess. But this is the first time that I have heard of the connection between joint pain and tonsills. Anyone reading have experience with this?

I am also anemic. And continue to be a bit sleep deprived.

And for the congestion some other medication was prescribed which is clearing things up quickly- only now I finally feel the sore throat.

SO, if I go through with it, the surgery here in Klaipeda would require a 3-4 day hospital stay. And is scheduled for April 18.

In other better news, it seems the time has come for David Augenijus to use the toilet or potty mostly on his own initiative. Just in the last few days we've seen a big difference.

The first health incident with preschool that we know about happened this week. A little girl in Erik's group fell sick- literally fell and vomited her whole GI contents and has some illness that she is hospitalized for now. So the preschool is on special measures for a while (sanitizing and quarentine) till they are sure it is not being passed. So far no signs with Erik.

Yesterday I led a forum discussion at LCC for the staff to discuss the Christian identity of our university and how we describe it to others. It is a unique setting since it does not belong to one church and since it is very open to Christians of all traditions.

On Friday the church relations committee that I lead will meet with local pastors and priests to talk about how we are doing Christian mission and to see how we might interact with them more and encourage our students to be more involved in church ministries.