Thursday, October 30

Oh Lanterns...

These are our pumpkins.

We picked the pumpkins to cut the pumpkins, empty the pumpkins, carve the pumpkins, illuminate the pumpkins, eat pumpkin seeds and toss the rest in the compost.

Monday, October 27

Rotten Tomatoes

What do you get when you combine the dry air of Spokane, two weeks of crying and too-little rest?

A bloomin' cold!

I've said it before and I'll say it again: COLDS ARE ROTTEN TOMATOES!

Saturday, October 25


I know talking about Papa may be something that many of you are expecting for my first post since last week. Because I'm not ready to summarize my experiance I want to discuss another thing that is happening in my life; stripping.

Not the good old fashion taking clothes off, but the practice of using harsh chemicals to remove paint and other finishes from wood.

This is what I am stripping.

I bought it off of craigslist and am hoping to bring it back to life (i'm currently working on the drawer that is missing.

However, I need some help. That's where you fit in. I need suggestions concerning the following questions.

I can easily open the drawer by slipping my fingers under each drawer and pulling. I believe this is they way the dresser was originally designed.

QUESTION 1: Should I put a drawer pull (as shown on the bottom two drawers) for decoration purposes?

I know the dresser is white now, and I enjoy color- so the general idea is, oh, paint it a fun color. However...I am actually thinking about painting it a different color of white because it will blend with my closet which is like this closet from Ikea but has legs (another craigslist find).

QUESTION 2. Is white a good idea, or should I go with a different color or combination of colors, like charcoal blue, light blue, and/or silver (if I do go with a color it will likely be blue because it goes well with the blue that is in our beautifully made quilt).

QUESTION 3. Should I put new silver legs to give it a modern feel(if I can figure out how)?

Please, please comment. And if you need extra detail, I promise to post the answers. NOTE: Any suggestion may or may not be considered.

Thursday, October 23

Some Days

Some days defeat seems closer than breath.

Today, it feels really close. Perhaps this is because I'm not feeling well physically, or maybe because my Papa is now in heaven. Maybe its because this last week has been filled with hundreds of emotions; from love to loss, from possiblity to helplessness.

Right now though, I just need to run back to my heavenly father and ask amoung my crying. "Abba- would please, please show me that I am beautiful?"

Saturday, October 18

This Wednesday

For anyone reading from Spokane, we are having a memorial service for Papa on Wednesday at 2:00 PM at the Heritage Memorial Home on government way.

Thursday, October 16

Papa's Memorial

Jack Sherman Hill, born Nov. 25 1939, went to be with His father, God in heaven, October 15th, 2008 after a courageous two year battle against the dragon, pancreatic cancer.  

Jack passed away peacefully at home and is survived by his wife of 24 years Paulette Hill, nine children; Kim Kidder (Deer Park, WA), Robin Meyers (Freeland, WA), David Hill (Spokane, WA), Deeann Bennett (Spokane, WA), Kimberley Tucksen (Yelm, WA), Karin Gilmore (Spokane, WA), Meagan Campbell (Bellingham, WA), Jennifer Bateman (Wellington, New Zealand), and Jessica Ober (Seattle,WA), adopted children; Mark Magney (Spokane WA) and Joy Meek (Spokane, WA), two sisters; Lauretta Phillips (North Carolina) and Trudy Potter (Spokane, WA), twelve grandchildren, two great-grand children, and several much loved nieces and nephews. 

Jack faithfully served his country for twenty years, gaining the rank of CWO-2 in the U.S. Navy. His service included three tours in Vietnam, where he received a medal of honor for his bravery in rescuing two men, caught in combat. He also served the U.S. in the Navy's Bikini Island atom bomb testing in the 1950’s.

The family would like to thank the doctors and nurses at Virginia Mason Hospital in Seattle, WA, especially Dr. Vincent Picozzi, MD in oncology, and the staff in ICU at Whidbey General Hospital.  Additionally they would like to thank Vic Hansen and Hansen’s Lumber employees for their prayers and support during Jack’s inability to work due to his illness.  Jack played an active role in his community and his church, Whidbey Evangelical Free Church in Greenbank.

The family asks that any monetary gifts be made to Life Services Crisis Pregnancy Center, in Spokane, WA.  Condolences can be sent to Paulette Hill, PO Box 74 Freeland, WA 98249.

Jack will forever be remembered for his generous spirit, kind heart, selflessness, humility, protection of his family and country, and his compassion for all people. His spirit and legacy will continue to live on through the lives that he touched, and his beloved wife and children.

Memorial to be held on Sunday October 19th at 2:00 pm at Whidbey Evangelical Free Church in Greenbank. Further information to co

Wednesday, October 15

Hospice Ends

Hospice ended this morning at 3:30 AM when Papa went home to his Father. The few hours our family shared were beautiful, and while the pain of losing him is vast- I also feel anticipation for the day when we will be reunited and I too will meet our Abba, our father.

Until then Papa, I will miss you.

Peace and much love.

Tuesday, October 14

Hospice Begins

Its quiet here.

I'm in the family room at Whidbey General hospital typing away.

Tonight, Papa is being transported home to his apartment (I think he wants me to ride in the ambulance with him). They call it hospice. Staying home, with your family as you wait for God call to you home. For Pa that's heaven.

Right now we're not sure how long that will last- but we're grateful to have him with us.

Thank you father God for the next hours, days, weeks, or months.

Peace and loves.

Monday, October 13


Today I found out that Papa's health is getting worse, too much CO2 going to his brain. Doctors are there to help overcome this problem- and family is there for support. However, to the immensity of the situation my throat began to tighten and I internally responded with:

“No! It is too soon for Papa to die!”

And then I paused and realized- anytime will be too soon.

Friday, October 10

Thoughts on Dreaming

Dreams are prevalent in my mind.

In sleep I dream of dancing in strange colors, walking down long corridors and having short romances- sometimes with my husband, sometimes a man from the past and other times with the cute Irish guy from TV. Sometimes the only character I observe is myself and other times my family, friends, and anonymous- yet familiar faces- interact with me. Most often my dreams move from a color to a scene to an ending. No real episodic movement. Once in a while I experience fear in my dream or my dream feels so real that I wake up to reality with a ting of unbelief. Only after the wave of sleep subsides and my bladder is beckoned to a porcelain throne do I understand that I'm awake in Seattle, work and the day to day.

At work I dream. Some of my dreams are imposed, creative attempts at bettering the system for customer service. I like these moments. I am paid to brainstorm and dream about the possibility of something new and how it will affect all aspects of the company. These moments allow my thoughts to move from data entry and customer complaints to the ideal. What would the day be like when everything we do was easily accessible by the computer? What if we actually sold what we could make and everything we made was the best in the business? But those dreams don't last either. I realize that no matter how hard I brainstorm a training problem, a system problem, a simple it-won't-work-with-us-problem will arise and my dreams will either be put on hold, restructured or thrown out all together.

Perhaps because I'm a visual person or maybe because I have a vivid imagination I dream about me. Wondering and speculating, hoping and praying about where I am going to be tomorrow and the next day and wow someday this and someday that. I have dreams to own my own house, perfectly decorated. Dreams to have well behaved, intelligent, super funny, talented children. I dream that someday somewhere I can purchase a warehouse and restore it and open it up so that artists all over the city can use the rooms, cheap so they can make things and create and be loved in this way. I have dreams that Matt will be a successful sales guy, or audio engineer or poet or spoken word artist. I dream that I'll be a perfect beautiful wife that is patient, kind, long suffering and completely sold out for Jesus. But those dreams just seem so far away.

Dreaming seems like a cousin to hope. Maybe I am an avid dreamer because I have hope. I believe Christ is real, possibilities are real and even if they are far away I can still think about them. On the other hand I think that dreams often deceive me. Life as Matt would say, never turns out the way we expect. Sometimes our dreams will happen at a different time, later than we had expected. My dreams that involve other people often need re-working and restructuring. As for my dreams at night, unless it’s the warm milk I drank before bed, I’m pretty sure I didn’t chose to have them- they came to me (I do love my husband not the guy from the past, and the Irish guy on TV is probably a jerk in real life).

For me when I dream I must grapple with the desire for control and perfection, self-centeredness and the reality- this world is fallen and I am part of that world. So my desire when I dreams is to counteract them with the truth. Even if I have to wait for years, or other people don’t like my dreams, I still have hope. Dreams are mine but my hope is in Christ.

Thank you father for offering hope to my poor weary soul. And thank you father for the power of imagination.

Thursday, October 9


Today's number one good feeling comes from the site "Re-Nest" a sister site to Apartment Therapy. It is all about pallets which are dear to me. Growing up Papa made fences out of them, we used them to keep us warm during the cold eastern Washington winters and we also played in, on and around them when we were lil' ones.

I love resourcefulness!
I love pallets!
I love the smell of pallets!
I love the warmth of oak pallets burning in the fireplace!
I love, love, love Papa for cutting up all those pallets year in and out (and the older sisters too;) so we stayed warm!

The main picture for the article looks just like the area behind the barn of the farm I grew up on.
Click here to see for yourself.

Wednesday, October 8


I've been wanting to post pictures but I need a cord to upload the pictures from my camera to the computer.

As soon as I aquire this more pictures will canvas the screen.

Tuesday Nights

On Tuesday nights Matt and I have been going to a community/service group for our church. We meet, usually snack on something, talk about the sermon, and pray. Also, most of us are involved in some way in children’s ministry. I was hesitant to go to the group at first. Some of this was good discretion trying to make sure that I wasn’t over involving myself or getting super busy with life. On the other hand some of my hesitation was plain old anxiety and fear. After two months of struggling to know what was my will and God’s, I feel like God has shown me that this is the right place to be.

I really appreciate all the females in this group. There are singles, dating, newly-married (like me) and mom’s with children, and they all have a strong love for Jesus and for people. Plus they have some of the best sense of humor I’ve encountered in a long, long time. The men are equally as encouraging (and also, they talk more than the women…which to me is not really taboo- since Matt is verbose- but in general how did we get so many chatty guys in one room?).

Anyway…last night was great. I really enjoy the people and I pray that true relationship comes out of this quirky bunch of people.

Thanks groupies for your acceptance, grace, wisdom and love.

Monday, October 6

From My Sister

Hi there- this is a part of an e-mail my sister wrote to the family. For friends who know my Papa and Ma well and also for Matt's family who often asks for updates, I think this gives a good synopsis. I couldn't have explained it better since I'm not as invovled in the daily routine. Please read.

"Update on Papa:As you know Papa has been struggling a lot more these last few months, than in his previous months fighting the cancer. He has been very weak, and, as most of you have noticed, lost a lot of weight. In August he started getting blood transfusions. These were because the tumor in his lung lining, was bleeding badly. Every time it bled his body was loosing valuable blood cells that all people need for healing and normal bodily functions. I have personally learned that blood levels in a body affect many things, including appetite, ability to rest, water retentions, etc. All of Papa's functions have been affected.

Good news #1 is that Papa is now having the transfusions once a week. We are able to get them at the hospital on whidbey island, so that Ma & Pa don't have to commute all the way to Seattle once or twice a week. The end goal of the blood transfusions is to get Papa's energy levels up, and his body working as properly as possible. The cancer itself shows no signs of having spread or changed since July. However, because Papa is so weak from loosing blood he cannot receive treatment for the tumors and cancer that are causing him to loose blood. If his energy levels get up, Papa can choose to go through more treatment which will then fight the cancer.

Good news #2 is that Papa got a scooter, so when we go out he can actually go with us, and not stress as much about not having to get to the car, or stay in the car if a store doesn't have scooters.

Good news #3 is that the fluid and blood we've been draining from the side where the tumor has been bleeding has lessened some, and become pinker (rather than red) in color. Praise God!Good news #4 is that Papa is looking a little healthier, and has gained 5 pounds.

Good news #5 is that Papa is starting to eat better and larger amounts of food. (although I have tried to get him to drink Ensure, and he said it tasted like s*it! PA! )

No so good news #1 Papa is lonely, weak, and grumpy more often than not. He is needy, and wants attention. Mom and I are constantly doing the simplest tasks for him, things that he could do for himself, like warming up his coffee, or getting a glass of water. Personally, I think its his way of having conversations, contributing, and interacting at the moment because he can't contribute any other way. And when we do the little things for him it makes him feel loved. Nonetheless he can come across a bit bossy, and sometimes he directs step by step like, "go into the kitchen... open the cupboard... take out a glass...etc."

No so good news #2 is that mom is wearing thin on patience. She needs more positive time, which is hard to find when Papa is always so sick.

The things we can do:
1. PRAY FOR PAPA: All of us kids, and grand kids, and family need to pray for Papa. We need to ask God to be with him right now. He is very weak sometimes, and doesn't smile as often as he used to. He is very reliant on his oxygen tank and machine, and he spends a lot of time at home. Please ask God to take care of Papa, all of him, his spirit, his heart, his body, and his mind, no matter what is to come.

2. CALL, EMAIL, OR WRITE: Papa really needs love right now. He may not be the best conversationalist at the moment, but he does like emails, and short chats. Even cards, or sending a comic or something funny that he would appreciate in the mail. Postage is cheap!

3. COME OVER AND SEE THEM: Mom and Papa really need family that will bring joy to them. They have been SUCH amazing parents, and though they do have their flaws, they are the ones in need right now. They need family to come and be silly and watch movies, and make meals, and just be here. David was able to come last month (on the train, which by the way is pretty affordable) and that really made Papa's week. Jessie came last Saturday, and Papa's comment was that it was nice to have Jessie here. He didn't interact much, but he enjoys watching others have fun. Mom has personally told me that she wants all of the kids to visit. Everyone will have to take turns, because their apartment is small, and Papa is better with a few at a time. "

Wednesday, October 1

Political Fare

So, I should have posted this when I read it on Sept 16th since it corresponds with the presidential debates, which were last Friday, but I think it is good enough to post, even if it is a little late.

I admit- I am not the greatest political follower. On the other hand I do try to absorb at least a little of what is going on politically and believe that having an understanding and voice about what is going on in one's nation is critical and important. In this Great article by, Ann McFeatters, I'm challenged on that frontier. She urges people to think outside of the cool box and into the "these-people-will-be-leading-us” box.

She's right. There is so much going on and Americans (if not other nations) can feel it. Here in Seattle I feel like the “in thing" is to adore Obama. It is turning to Obama worship on every corner, on each bumper sticker and in almost every suedo-political conversation I've heard. I call it suedo because this is the discussion (and...I'm NOT kidding).

Person a. "Who you gonna vote for?"
Person b. "Obama, I think."
Person a. "Yeah me too."
Person b. "I just think he'll do great things for the nation. Besides McCain is old. He'll probably die before the end of his term, and dear God we wouldn't want Sarah Palin as president!"

Maybe that is looking ahead a little bit, but seriously people!

As Ann McFeatters urges us, let's remember that BOTH Obama and McCain are human, they aren't saints. Let's find out what they really stand for and make our vote based on that. Two years down the road into his presidency, whoever the president is, he'll make mistakes and each of us will be wondering how the heck he got into such a powerful position. We'll forget that we voted for him because he has a soothing voice, a picture perfect wife, or a brilliant set of straight, white teeth! Then we'll complain and wish that Hilary were president!