Monday, April 03, 2006

I can see clearly now, the rain is gone...

Hello faithful supporters!

This is a blog that you've been waiting for.  I am using our voice activation software to type you this e-mail.  If it takes me two hours to type this e-mail then I am talking very slow.  I wanted to update you on some of the things that have been going on.  First of all, we are still not totally in the clear with our cell phones.  I know that some of you have been trying to call me and have been getting a message that says my cell phone number has been discontinued or something like that.  We had to switch cell phone carriers and buy two new cell phones.  There were some problems with my number being ported from one carrier to another; but tomorrow I should be back to my old phone number.  I will try to return all of your calls as soon as possible.

Thank you for all of the birthday cards and gifts and messages that I received last week.  I turned 32 years old -- where has the time gone?  Aaron and I spent my birthday evening at Disneyland.  My dear friend Daleasha just happened to be at Disneyland at the same time with her family.  I had not seen them since the first couple of months I was in the hospital.  They were on their way back from a mission trip in Mexico.  So we were able to spend Friday evening with them at a very rainy, cold and damp Disneyland.  And the next day they drove from Anaheim to Riverside and spent Saturday evening and Sunday morning with us.  It was interesting to maneuver through Disneyland with thousands of people there.  But I managed not to run over anyone with my wheelchair!  

We left Disneyland at midnight when they closed.  We were driving home on the freeway when something very scary happened.  It was raining and we were in the third lane in a four lane area.  To our right was an entrance ramp.  A white pickup truck was coming down the ramp to get on the freeway.  When he accelerated to merge into the lane next to us he completely lost control of his truck.  He began swerving and fishtailing all over the road.  At one point he slid into our lane and was perpendicular to us.  I went into a panic because it was all too familiar and the weather conditions were very bad.  I can't believe that we did not hit him; but Aaron calmly drove right around him and avoided him completely.  We thought that his truck was going to roll, but it didn't.  I was speechless and shaking very badly.  Aaron was speechless and totally calm.  He said that in that split second he had an overwhelming peace and knew that God had protected us.  Amazingly we realized that there were no other cars anywhere around us.  This is very unusual for a southern California freeway no matter what the time is.  And just for the record, I don't like white pickup trucks.

On Sunday afternoon I had the privilege of being a matron of honor in a wedding that took place at our church.  Two dear friends at our church had a beautiful sacred wedding ceremony.  It was a challenge to get dressed for a wedding but Aaron did a great job and Daleasha was here to help with the hair and makeup.

My eye surgery went very well on March 28.  I went back to the eye doctor the next day and was reading at 20\13 vision.  I don't think I have ever seen that well in my entire life.  It feels strange to wake up in the morning and be able to see right away.  And at night when I go to bed I keep thinking that I need to take out my contacts.  I am so thankful to this doctor for offering this as a free service.  I feel very fortunate to have this done.

Aaron is on spring break this week.  Last night he slept for almost 12 hours.  I don't think he has ever slept this much since I have known him.  He told me today that he has not felt this good since before our accident.  Hopefully he will be able to catch up on even more sleep this week.  Tomorrow we are planning, weather permitting, to go to Joshua Tree National Park.  Joshua Tree is fairly close to where we live and it is easy to make a day trip out of it.  We love Joshua Tree and last spring we spend a lot of time there.  It holds many fond memories of hiking and rockclimbing and camping.  Obviously, we have not been there since before our accident -- so I am sure that it will be a bittersweet time.  On Thursday we are planning to visit the Huntington Library and Gardens in Pasadena with Sarah.  It is a beautiful place that is very handicapped accessible.  The weather has been very rainy so I am not sure we will get to do either of these things but we are going to try.

There is one more thing that I am looking forward to in the next couple of weeks.  I will be attending a clergy conference for women clergy in San Diego.  This is a conference that happens every two years and the last one I was able to go to was four years ago in Colorado Springs.  Fortunately San Diego is much closer to Riverside.  I really don't care if I ever go to Colorado again, so I am glad that it is in San Diego.  Sarah will be going with me as my caretaker and of course as an awesome friend!  I am very excited about this opportunity.  So if any of my female pastor friends are reading this blog update I will see you in San Diego.  I'll be the one with the new wheels!

I think for now I am done talking.  It did take about an hour and a half to speak this e-mail.  But it is much less exhausting talking than typing one key at a time.  Thank you for your continued support and the love and prayers.

Until then, may God keep you all safe.


By the way, we have some pictures that we will be posting on the web site in the next couple of days; so if you are interested in seeing what we look like then keep checking for new pictures.


Anonymous said...

I love the title of this blog Kari. Praise God! So glad to hear your new voice-activated software is working so well. You are such an elegant writer as well as a classy lady. Continued blessings, health, and safety. I so look forward to reading your updates. Thanks for continuing them.

Kristin said...

Hey when you are in San Diego you should call me so that I can come see you if you are not to busy. Glad you are getting out and having fun. I love Disneyland!!

Kristin Crowder

Cyndi Fusek said...

Thanks for the update. We'll work on lobbying for no white pickup trucks. Have a great week!

Pam said...

Hey Kari! Susan Arch & I tried to call you for your birthday last week but ran into the problems you mentioned. We also tried to send you a greeting from Prarie Home Companion, but they didn't choose it! I am SO glad you are going to the conference in San Diego. I look forward to seeing you there!
Pam Hiscock Braman

Jen Chesher said...

Oh my goodness Kari! It has been awhile since I have read your blog. I have to say that I was so happy I almost cried when I read these latest posts. Your spirit inspires me and I am so glad that you didn't lose an ounce of your grace an elegance:) All of the wedding planning has had the two of you in my thoughts daily. I hope that this message finds you well.


Jan Yessa said...

Hi Kari and Aaron,
I go to your website quite often, just to see your smiling face!! Just thought you would like to know that - and what a pleasant surprise an update from you - how delightful!!!!
How great that you and Aaron are going "out to play" - what fun!!
Also, what a blessing that you are getting "back to work". I am just filled with greatfullness at your progress and just wanted you to know - I have to go now as I started crying (something that doesn't happen very often as you know).
Jan Yessa

Anonymous said...

Thanks for being an inspiration to us all. Your blogs put a smile on my face as I read them. You guys would probably love to know that Mark Franzen got me a bleacher ticket to the Cubs/Cardinals game this Sunday night. It will be on ESPN, so watch the game and look for us, we will be the guys out in the bleachers in the 35 degree weather with our shirts off and Cardinals Suck painted on our chests....Oh wait, that is everyone sitting in the bleachers at wrigley :) I guess we will fit right in.
Root, root, root, for the Cubbies!
Love you,
Paul Alf

Anonymous said...

Ms. Kari,
It was so good to see you and Aaron. Thanks for the FUN! We love you so much. Daisy told me on the way home, "Mommy didn't Kari look beautiful?" You did! See you in a couple of weeks. San Diego here we come!

Charlie + said...

Kari said...
I think for now I am done talking. It did take about an hour and a half to speak this e-mail. But it is much less exhausting talking than typing one key at a time. Thank you for your continued support and the love and prayers.

Until then, may God keep you all safe.

Dear Kari + Aaron,

I am certain that though the voice software is a "big help", you still have a lot more "navigation" to do than we on the other end see. I am also sure that this kind of software has come a long way, assisted my hardward advances in the last couple of decades.

One of the things that has recently showed up in super markets around here is using your "fingerprint" just like a "debit card" to check out. I noticed that right away as 20 years ago the company I worked for was helping to develop the same technology with computers to use fingerprints for security purposes. Still, the technology has to start somewhere, with someone "bold", and willing to invest and take a loss for some time. I am grateful God has seen fit that you have something you can work well with...

I certainly celebrate your eyes...

Aaron doesn't escape my prayers, either... a phrase has been...

"Peace, Sabbath, Strength, Discernment...praise and thanksgiving..."


Charlie +

Kathy Timmers said...

Hi Kari,
What a joy it's been to read your updates and see your sense of humor shining through :-) and hear all about your outings. And I'm so excited for you about going to the womens clergy conference! I will pray for safe travels and a time of renewal and refreshment for you.

I am also very glad your new software is working well for you. As I spend hours a day on the phone with insurance companies (yuck!) I struggle constantly with their voice recognition systems- and admit there are times I raise my voice in frustration- like that's going to make a difference.....

And another hearty amen for your eyesight- how wonderful to be able to see so well without glasses or contacts. Blessings abound!!!!!!

Much love,

PS- I'm with Cyndi on banning all white pick-up trucks- Yikes! Praise God you two came out of that OK.

Dave and Natalie Thompson said...

Kari and Aaron, Natalie and I were so encouraged to read your blog re:Disneyland! You both are thought about often here in NC. Dave T.

Anonymous said...

Kari & Aaron..
:) Hello!!!! I'm so excited to read your blog Kari-especially w/updates from you on it! How did your sermon go? :) I missed praying for that! SOrry!!!
I'm glad you are both doing well and continuing to see the Lord's protection and provision!
Happy belated birthday! :) You are loved very much!!!
Vickie Reynen