S: Vandeputte Family Memories 2011
BC: MAKING MEMORIES
FC: A YEAR IN REVIEW | Two thousand eleven
1: *30 hrs without my cell phone was horrible, but I learned Sprint's online tracking function truly works--it was quickly located...at my own house. *Grading papers at McDonald’s Playland, definitely not the same atmosphere as Starbucks;) *It's Mon morning & I'm lying in my hotel bed. My kids are at school, I am NOT"It's a great day at Chase on the Lake!" *A weekend of highs & lows, ending with my stepson in the hospital with a broken hip & ankle. He crashed on his sled while alone. So scary. *4th annual Wild Rose weekend. Guaranteed to be good. *In Alexandria tonight, proudly awaiting the presentation of MN Snowmobile Dealer of Yr award for Steve. *"Love is a language the blind can see & the deaf can hear." Happy V-Day, everyone! *Just when I think the week can't get crazier...discovered my 7-yr-old got me $75 worth of charges for an iPod game. All "love & logic" has flow out the window! *Just saw Hall Pass. Had no idea what it was even about, but OMG I laughed (& blushed :)) A LOT! *I won the chili cook-off at work today! Don't even get me started on my competition ! *Dinner group goes Mardi Gras! Love these nights! *It's positive! Both kids have strep. And we were so close to a medication-less winter. *Feeling lucky: won a gift certificate at the charity wine tasting, then I won a Black Hills gold watch from an Essentia Health drawing. *Happy 8th birthday to my "Most Creative Student"--we love you!! *Celebrating spring break at The Edge Waterpark in Duluth...it's no Cancun. *After 7 hours in the car, I'm trying hard to remember it will all be worth it once Steve & I get to the Grand Geneva resort for a much-needed escape. *I read "Baby Jessica" who was stuck in the well in 1987 is 25 now & able to cash in on her money. Does anyone else remember watching the whole ordeal on TV? *When one door opens, you have to shut another. Tough choices right now. *Just back from THEE BEST cooking class I've taken- build-your-own bruschetta from Prairie Bay with tons of recipes & tons of tasting! Thanks, Jana S!*For those old enough to recall TV's Growing Pains, last night I dreamed I was cast as Maggie in Broadway's version. It brought memories of Kirk Cameron posters *My little man cried real tears when Pia was sent home from Idol tonight. He had a bit of a crush. *Steve: If someone a few years ago had told me I'd be eating veggie dogs for dinner, I'd say they're nuts. Me: Welcome to Lent 2011! *Heading to the ranch with Naomi & John for some 4-wheeling & grilling! *I was surprised to return from the arts banquet to an empty house. Steve & kids, it turns out, have been stuck in mud for 3 1/2 hrs. NEVER a dull moment here. *As much as I would love to take time to smell the flowers, there are just too many weeds to which I must tend. *I am still recovering from today's comment from a student: "I can't believe all you OLD people drink tea." *I think I am ready for 8 boys to join us for Kyler's b-day party tomorrow! *Honors Committee day; looking forward to awarding lots of students LOTS of scholarship money! *Tomorrow I have a day off from my "big" kids so I can watch little kids. I am excited to chaperone for a field trip to see Annie & a museum! *Tonight, Kyler told our neighbor he shouldn't smoke cuz it's bad for his health. He said his teacher told the class to do so. Oops. *Osama DEAD! At last. *Got an early Mom's Day gift tonight! I was trying to make pesto & garlic aoli in a smoothie machine, & Steve couldn't resist giving me my food processor. I think Kalina clued him in to my kitchen needs. Perfect! *So proud of Kalina: Happy 1st Communion. *My 6-yr-old is the horse's ass!...he will now be joining Kalina in the play, debuting as the back side of the horse in the CLC production. *After 11 years of advising school newspapers, tomorrow night will be my final deadline crunch time. Bittersweet, for sure. *The Clown Who Ran Away opens tomorrow night at CLC. I'm so proud of my courageous children! *Went to 36th annual Flying W ranch sale appreciation dinner tonight. Where else can you get away with talking about semen checking & scrotum circumference?? *Finally made it to aerobics at the Y today = sure to be sore tomorrow. *Heading to Pillager school to vote YES in the referendum. Who knows, the kids might end up there in a cpl yrs! *Cancelled our plans to go to Vermilion. Love my family, but only so much to do & so much to drink in a 1-room cabin with weather like this! *Is it weird I've been crying in my bed for an hour already...to Oprah DVR episodes?? *Lots of noise outside...scary storm...can't sleep, paranoid by tornado news. *Harbor Days on Lake Vermilion*Heading West! Spent the night in Plevna, MT: pop. 70. Crazy fun!...Today: Medicine Rock, a dino museum, & a taste of the Black Hills from Deadwood, SD. Great vaca, but I dread tomorrow's 10-hr drive home. *Softball games, basketball camp, piano lessons, play dates-my kids need their own agenda books! *5 days of AP work at Carelton College, then annual wknd of fun with the girls.! *Just experienced The Spotted Cow pub in Northfield. Can't go back to college without having a beer or two, right? *Dorm showers. Enough said. *4 intense days of learning, soon to be followed by a kick-butt GIRLS WEEKEND! Here I come, ladies! | The year according to Wendy: Facebook status updates, Jan.-Jun.
2: Holiday Get- together * Naomi & Elli, * Nicole, Carter, & Chase * & us! (Jan. '11)
3: MN Snowmobile Dealer of the Year Congratulations, Brothers!
4: "Put down your scrapbook & drink" weekend Wildrose Inn, Nevis - Feb. 3-5, 2011
5: From enjoying good food & drinks to laughing late into the night (& to doing a bit of scrapbooking), each year with this crazy bunch gets more and more fun!!!
6: Sweet Spring! | Crazy Dress up Days
7: Kalina receives 2nd grade's "Most Creative" Student-of-the-Month Award in February
8: Happy Spa Day/Sleep-over 8th Birthday, Kalina! | Kalina, Auni, & Amy
10: Y'all come back soon now!
11: April 7, 2011
12: April 14th, 2011
13: Happy 6th Birthday, Kyler! Old friends + new friends = a great party!
14: Escape to the Islands: April 22 | On the menu: Macadamia crusted mahi mahi, Tropical quinoa salad, Grilled eggplant with sesame-ginger glaze, Key Lime pie, & Mango pina colada smoothies. Swept away to Paradise!
15: Happy Easter!
16: Kalina had tons of fun in 2nd grade, including the Spring Sing on April 24 & the Field Trip to Annie & The Works Museum on April 26 (I went, too!).
17: Just For Kix 30th Anniversary Spring Show | Savannah, Kalina, & Hayden | "Making the world a better place for you & me" | April 28th
18: First Holy Communion St. Francis Church May 5, 2011
20: The Clown Who Ran Away Central Lakes College
21: Kalina auditioned for her first play, then Kyler was offered a role. They starred as The Old Lady with a Cane & her grandson
22: Kyler graduated from Mrs. Wilcox's class on May 24. He loved his teacher and enjoyed every minute of kindergarten at Lowell. Memories include reading his Kiwi Pac, earning "Gotchas", going to birthday parties, & shoving rocks in his ears . . . yep, it was a fun & unforgettable year!
24: Kinderfriend Day & Fun-n-Friends | Patty & Jordan
25: The Wild West
26: Plevna & Ekalaka, MT | Wiese Family, Steffes Family, & us!
28: Community Education Summer Basketball Camp | Kyler was a bit shy & intimidated at first, but by the week's end, he came to love his new favorite sport!
29: My week at Carelton College in Northfield, MN was a great experience. I came back from the AP conference more confident for my new AP Language & Composition assignment!
31: Back for more! Ronda's annual girls weekend: June 24-26
32: Dad & Kyler relax | God Bless Lake Vermillion | Kalina goes turtle hunting | The Vermillion Club | Fireworks! | Go, Justin! | Brian: showing off | Uncle Brown provides the fun | The 3 Amigos
33: 4th of July in Eveleth
34: Rivers Edge Splash Pad, Waite Park | 7/25
35: Love that new smile, Kyler Owen!!!
36: Kalina's 1st year playing Petite Softball was a blast. The Baxter Warriors, guided by Coach Dean and Coach Chuck, not only bonded like old friends, but earned the title of champions!
37: #1 | #1 | #1 | #1
38: "There's nothing sweeter than a visit with friends." Becky, Jason, & Ava Vinje spent a special afternoon with us at our home and at the ranch.
39: Finding the miraculous in the common is not difficult at Little Big Sky!
41: The Minnesota Zoo
42: HAPPY 10-YEAR ANNIVERSARY! How fortunate to return to the place we honeymooned! We extended the Florida vacation we had planned to go back to Savannah, Georgia, where we spent three wonderful days together celebrating US!
44: Our B & B made for a unique experience! Ed Bryant's 1895 Inn was full of character and comfort. From the location to Ed's recommendations for our time to the elegant breakfasts, every detail was perfect!
45: St. Simons Island, Georgia: Our unexpected discovery!
46: Amelia Island, Florida | Yamaha Dealer Meeting - Amelia Island Plantation Resort
48: The Resort was at the end of the historic island. By foot, car, golf cart, or from our oceanside room, there were endless sights to enjoy!
50: Carrie Underwood Concert at Mystic Lake with Naomi & Elli
51: First Day of School 2011 | Mrs. VanVickle, 3rd & Mrs. Bolt, 1st
52: An official 'welcome' to the family, Julie! The Vandeputtes are getting bigger & better all the time!
53: Play time is the best time! | Kennedi Ylinen | Seth Larson | Kalina & Kyler like nothing more than play dates with friends!
54: Old friends are, indeed, the best friends. To show their love & support (for my upcoming surgery), my Eveleth-Gilbert girlfriends road tripped to Brainerd! *Amy*Ronda*Holly*Kari*Tina*
55: 1. Shopping in Nisswa 2. Dinner at the Bay 3. Martinis at Iven's 4. Dancing at Zorbaz 5. Recovering in the a.m.!
56: The Flying W Ranch 1st Annual Horse Trail Ride & Camp Out | The whole family enjoyed a full weekend of fun for a good cause! | September 29th & 30th, 2011
57: BHS | 2011 | H O M E C O M I N G | Oct. 6
58: B R O T H E R S 3 7 1
59: Happy Halloween! | Degans' Barn Party
60: Another Miracle: * 17 years after my accident, Traumatic Brain Injury had almost finally been left in the past. How was I to know this medical history--& a June girls' weekend--would come to save my life? It was a matter of chance events which led to the July 7 diagnosis of a 4.5 mm paraopthalmic sacular aneurysm. Indeed, the second half of 2011 was dominated with the discovery, education, & treatment of my "annie." After an MRI & MRA in Brainerd, I went to Minneapolis for an angiogram & consult with an esteemed neurosurgery team. By early August, I had agreed to a surgical clipping, despite the chance of serious risks & a 6-week recovery process. Then, came along Tim & Jodi Williams. The purchase of a motorcycle from Brothers resulted in a conversation which changed everything. Suddenly, I was off to the Mayo Clinic to consult with Dr. Giussepe Lanzino, one of the first in the U.S. to perform the newly approved "Pipeline Embolization Device" surgery, a less invasive way to treat aneurysms and the route Steve & I immediately & wholeheartedly believed was the right one. On Nov. 3, Steve & my parents drove to Rochester for the Nov. 4 surgery. I cannot dismiss the fear & anxiety we all felt for so many months, but I must also reflect on the blessings brought by the experience. Love, support, prayers, & well-wishes from friends & family, comfort from aneurysm survivors (including a small group of PED recipients from around the world, met online), confidence in an incredible health care system, & trust in the Lord enabled me to grow stronger. In May 2012, we will return to the Mayo to learn, we pray, that the annie is all or mostly occluded. In other words, it shouldn't be long before this is yet another chapter to tuck away in the already long & ever-growing saga of my 36-year-old life. --Wendy (12/30/11)
61: "God Bless America" Veterans Day Program 2011
62: YMCA Winter Basketball | Kyler finally finds his niche on the court! Turns out, Kalina's not bad herself! | SATURDAYS IN DECEMBER & JANUARY | "I LOVE basketball! It's fun playing the game." - Kyler
63: J u s t F o r K i x
64: Winter memories: C.J. & Whitney go to PLHS Holiday Ball; Mrs. V's students get in the spirit; 'Gurlz on the Go' enjoy 2nd annual sleigh ride; kids visit the Lowell Extravaganza; Mom & Kalina ring bells; we all ride the RZR; Mom & Dad attend Takapeia's Winterfest. FUN!
65: Children's Christmas Eve Mass: St. Francis Catholic Church | "And all who gathered round Him, rejoiced and praised his birth. For the babe, the King, named Jesus, is our Savior here on earth!"
66: On Christmas Eve, it was time to unveil the "big one"--when the kids opened a poster of Donald Duck posed before a glacier, it took some time for them to realize we are going on a DISNEY ALASKAN CRUISE this June!!!!
67: On the 25th, we packed in our 3 traditional stops in Eveleth, then returned on the 26th to meet up with Brian, Dakota, & the boys for a final celebration.
68: Goodbye 2011, Hello 2012 | Holiday Inn Express, Baxter with Rick & Denise, Melanie, & Ryan
69: *Vacation day in our hometown: go carts, mini golf, ice cream cones, 4-wheeling, turtle-catching, and more fun! *Kyler part way through with his "chore"--How about 38 cents for this much so I can go watch Uncle Buck? * Happy 4th to all! Thanks to all who have made possible the freedom we enjoy today. *As much as I try to give people the benefit of my doubt, can't believe Casey Anthony was found not guilty. *Veggie purees. No, not prepping for a new baby; going to sneak more nutrition in our meals! *I'm on a school bus this morning, heading out on a water conservation tour with Steve & our ranching friends. *Lovely dinner tonight at Grandview's Cru with lovely friends. Several "small plates" equal one delicious dining experience! *Kalina & I just made this bird bath; not bad for a mom with very little artistic skill! *Today's project: painting with carrots. Maybe I could be a stay-at-home mom after all! *There's nothing like a day of shopping with Mom & Auntie to brighten the spirits! *Thanks for kind words from those who've learned of my recent diagnosis. No one expected a brain aneurysm, but it's a matter of miracles we found it. Prayers & positive thoughts are keeping me strong. *Way to go Baxter Warriors: Division Champions!! *Thoroughly enjoyed my 1st pig races & lots of people-watching at Growler Days in Leader. *The moment of truth awaits: angiogram in St. Paul tomorrow, then radiology consult and surgeon consult at Nat'l Brain Aneurysm Center in Mpls Wednesday. Your love & support has made all the difference in the world. I feel strong & confident! *Angiogram shows a 4 mm aneurysm, which has nothing to do with my brain injury ('94) or my recent dizziness. I just got lucky (?) & found it. Both coiling & clipping are options, but since it's near my eye, clipping may be better. Decision time... *Surgery scheduled for Nov 1st. In the meantime, I plan to enjoy the most beautiful months of the year and post only fun & light comments! *On our way to an impromptu visit to a waterpark and the MN Zoo!!! *I can't believe 10 years of marriage have passed by. I am thankful for the amazing journey and can't wait to head back to Savannah, GA, where we honeymooned, and to visit Amelia Island, FL. *Lying beside a palm-shaded pool, listening to the ocean, & wondering if it's too early to order a mojito. Life is good today. *On course 3 of 7 of the Prairie Bay farm dinner. Food, friends, atmosphere are all to die for! *The girls are off! Carrie Underwood, here we come!!! *One excited first grader + one excited third grader + one excited teacher mommy = one happy home tonight! Gotta love this time of year! *Great celebration tonight! So happy for my bro & sis-n-law Julie!! *Looking forward to a very special weekend with my "old" friends and some "new" ones, too. Girlfriends are one of life's greatest blessings! *On our way to the Mayo. Getting a second opinion can't be a bad idea. *Today, the Mayo lived up to its reputation. Brain surgery is out & "pipeline embolization" is in. I will have this newly approved device inserted early Nov & will be back to work & life in a couple days. This was a miraculous discovery! Your continued support has been great. *Gotta say I'm already exhausted by unending homework help needed for my first and third graders. It doesn't appear I will be enjoying evenings of reading or TV or visiting. Heck, even cleaning sounds appealing lately. *Happy birthday to my amazing husband!!! *At BHS Homecoming 2011 with Kalina. Ah, to be young again. Love that spirit! *Day 10 of 10 without Steve. The kids & I made it...but it was close! *My 8-yr-old just told me all about alliteration, metaphor, hyperbole, & onomatopoeia, as learned in 3rd grade today. Music to this English teaching momma's ears!!! *Great night at the ranch. Food, fire, fun...We even picked, shelled, & roasted walnuts from our own tree! *Please support the Brainerd Schools and the future of our community. Thank you for voting YES-YES! *ONLY 3 MORE DAYS!!! After 4 months of continually dealing with my aneurysm, I am so ready for the surgery. I will leave for the Mayo Clinic Thurs morning for 3 appts, then surgery early Fri and (hopefully) home Sat! My foreboding worry is that I wake up to learn the doc wasn't able to do the pipeline device and I'm back to clipping. Thanks to all for the incredible support; it truly has helped me!! *Finally have my head up after 10 1/2 hours of lying flat...the worst is over, just sore & tired now. Surgery a success, thank the Lord. *I am very anxious to be back in my classroom tomorrow...hopefully with YES-YES results! #2 is looking close so far. *"Anxiety does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow but today of its strength." *Got my 1st invite to Christmas Ball. How sweet. *My mom is THAT mom: goes to ER Sun, has surgery Mon, but still insists on coming down tomorrow WITH the turkey, stuffing, & pie (none of which she can eat). I am truly thankful for my parents! *Late-shift bell ringing tonight...with a smile! *How to get a girlfriend (Kyler's advice): When you see her, walk up & buy her a soda. Then she will like you & you can ask her on a date. When you're on the date, you can kiss her & then she will become your girlfriend. *I'm a terrible mommy! Kalina complained for 3 days of an aching tooth, & I assured her it would go away. Instead, she was sent home from school, taken to dentist by dad, & scheduled for ROOT CANAL surgery. *Bad: Having 26 sophomore students overhear me say on the phone, "I charge $100 for shoving them all in" (um, school newspaper inserts). Also bad: Getting the giggles with them for 5 solid minutes. Never a dull moment here! *Thanks for all of the thoughtful birthday wishes! I spent the day with my beautiful daughter (who had a root canal) & the night with my amazing family (all 10 of us!) at Iven's. How could it get any better? *On our way to the Range for day 2 of a 3-day celebration. Wishing everyone a blessed Christmas!! *At Holiday Inn, Baxter, with our racing friends, watching MN's Levi Levallee attempt to break a world record on a snowmobile!! Happy New Year! | The year according to Wendy: Facebook status updates, Jul.-Dec.