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Tuesday, December 15, 2009


I can't believe it's almost Christmas!!!
We've had a busy couple of months. Jacob finished his Associate's degree at Metro Comm College in mid-November. He didn't want anyone to make a big deal about it, but I think it's pretty darn cool. He's going to take a break from school for about 3 years so I can go back and get a Music Education degree. I start at UNO in January. I already have a BA in Music, so I have about 2 years of Education classes to take and then a semester of student teaching. I am pretty excited! I will be ready to teach full-time when Shae is ready to start Kindergarten! Jacob will be able to go back to school then as a full-time student without having to worry about bringing home the only paycheck.
Joseph is having a blast at pre-school and has learned A LOT! His social skills and behavior are greatly improved. He also recently started Occupational therapy to help him with some of his sensory issues. They have gotten him to feed himself peach mango applesauce, which is quite a feat. He is also going to start some extra speech therapy, too. Earlier today, I met with Joseph's "education team" at his school. We went over his goals and talked about how much progress he has made since starting in August. We are always amazed at his reading ability. He will be 4 in January and is reading at about a 2nd grade level. I did find out this morning that Joseph has an official educational diagnosis of Autism. We've basically known that for a while now, but had it confirmed by a school psychologist today. I am SO thankful for all of the early intervention he is getting.

Christmas Pictures of the Boys!

Thursday, November 5, 2009


Here's our little puppy in the stroller and Joseph is a pirate again this year. The only part of the costume from last year that didn't fit was the pants, so we just bought some striped socks to wear under them since they were a little short.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Shae's First B-day!

So, this is really late, but here are pictures from Shae's First Birthday (9/9/09)

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Monday, October 5, 2009

Yay!!! It's Autumn!

I LOVE Autumn!! It's been brisk and windy and rainy the last few days and I love it! Something about this time of year makes me happy. Sweaters, hot cider, pumpkin patches - love it all! I am going to my first corn maize this week and can't wait!
Jacob and I took the boys out for a walk the other day. The boys cheeks and noses turned pink in the wind and they loved watching the leaves blow around everywhere. The other thing about this time of year is the sunset! It's so amazing! I think I will have to take some pictures!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Finally updating

So, it's been over a month since my last entry. Instead of writing a novel, here's a quick rundown of what we've been up to.
July - Not much after the ER visit.
August - I went to SLC for the Scentsy convention. I had a great time and owe my mom BIG time for watching all 6 of her grandkids so Pam and I could be at the convention all day long for 2 days and for driving the whole way!
Jacob finished Summer quarter and started Fall quarter and will have his Associate's in November. I was accepted to UNO and will start in January to get a Music Education Bachelor's. Even though I already have a BA-Music, I have to get a Music Education degree to teach. It will take about 2 years of part-time classes.
September - Joseph started Pre-School!!!! (Okay, it was actually Aug 28). He takes the bus to and from school. His speech has already started improving and I am beginning to catch up with housework while he is away.
I'll post some pictures when I find my camera!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Joseph's ER visit

We went to Target on Tuesday to buy some diapers and ended up at the Emergency Room. When we got to Target, Shae's car seat wouldn't fit in the shopping cart, so we put him in the cart seat and put Joseph in the basket. We've done it before with no problems. As we were leaving electronics, Joseph stood up and fell out of the cart and landed right on his head. It happened so fast. The sound was terrible. I thought he was fine - I'd seen bumps on his head before. We got him some juice and cookies and got in the car. Jacob insisted on taking him to the Urgent Care center just a block away. I was reluctant to sit in a waiting room with both boys. I carried Joseph into the clinic and was barely in the waiting room when Joseph threw up all over me 3 times. Everyone in the room just stared at us. I said "I guess we should have gone to the ER." The intake nurse was staring at us, not moving. Jacob said "Help" and I looked at her and said "Can someone bring us some towels?" It was really strange. A wonderful woman grabbed the towels from the nurse and said she would clean up so we could both go back with Joseph. The clinic called an ambulance. We went outside with a police officer to meet the rescue squad. A lady on her cell phone backed her car out right in front of the rescue squad. The cop totally yelled at her and she looked completely mortified. Jacob rode in the ambulance with Joseph. My parents met us at the hospital and watched Shae. The doctor was really good with Joseph. He wanted to do a CT scan, but we knew Joseph wouldn't be able to sit still for it and he really didn't want to sedate him. In the end, Joseph was observed for a little while and then they gave him some apple juice to make sure he could keep it down. About 10 minutes after he chugged the juice, he was running around the exam room, playing with whatever he could find. The doctor came in, saw him playing, and said he was fine. He sent us home with some head injury guidelines. Here are some pictures of the damage.

This is the same day, about 8 hours after his fall. (above and below)

This last picture is the next day. The doctor told us Joseph would have a black eye the next day - he was right! Joseph is doing much better (although a little cranky) and is getting good rest and watching lots of Scooby Doo cartoons.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Family Fourth

We woke up Saturday morning with nothing planned to celebrate our Nation's birthday. So, we improvised. We decided to head up to the Bob Kerry pedestrian bridge in downtown Omaha. We were completely surprised by how nice the grounds are by the bridge. It's not just a bridge connecting Omaha and Council Bluffs. The visitor's center has a great display of the Lewis and Clark history and also history of the Missouri River. On our way up to the bridge, we passed a splash park (with fountains that shoot out of the ground that you can run through and get wet). It was a little chilly, so we avoided that area. A few luxury condo buildings stand just beyond the grounds. We walked to the halfway point on the bridge before heading back to the car to eat lunch and hit the zoo. Joseph fell asleep as we were parking at the zoo and slept until we were heading back home. We were totally unsuccessful in finding a fireworks show that night. We packed a picnic dinner and headed out to the base lake. We ate in the back of the minivan, but soon found out that the base lake fireworks were on Thursday! Oh, well. We came home and watched a little bit of the shows on TV and put the boys to bed. They were pretty worn out from the day and so were mom and dad! Enjoy the pictures!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Getting ready for Summer

So, since my last update, a few things have happened to the Harwood Family. I was called to be the 1st Counselor in the Young Women's Presidency at Church. I am totally excited to work with the youth at church. We just got back from a temple trip with the youth and had a great time. We had a large group there and they were well behaved and reverent the whole time.
Jacob finished Spring quarter (he got an A in his music class) and has a short break before starting Summer quarter. Assuming the college gets his financial aid processed before classes begin, he will start June 5th. He will have his Associate's degree August 15th!
Jacob's work threw us a curveball recently and we are facing 6 weeks of no income for June/July right now. Jacob and I have both applied for a few jobs and we are just waiting to hear now. Keep your fingers crossed for us!
Joseph is getting better with all the new strategies his occupational therapist has given us. He loves is velcro schedule. He also loves hanging from the pull-up bar when we put it up in his doorway. I want to get a swing to attach to it. It's neat to see how certain types of play actually help Joseph calm himself down. Not only is his behavior improving, but he is reading more everyday! He still has his moments and we are working on getting him to be better in Nursery at church, but I am thankful for what he has accomplished so far.
Shae is getting bigger and more mobile. He can army crawl really fast if he's motivated. He also loves watching Joseph play. His favorite toys are bouncy balls and his glow worm. Baby Mozart is also a favorite.
We also recently found out that Jared (Jacob's brother) and his wife Allison are pregnant! Congrats to them and we hope Jared will be back from his deployment in time!! We miss them a lot and love Skype so we can still see their faces all the way over in Japan!
I hope to post some pictures of our Summer fun at the zoo and pool and lots of other things!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Lincoln Marathon

My brother Josh ran in the Lincoln Marathon this morning. He ran 26.2 miles in just under 4 hours! He says it's his first and last full marathon. I still can't believe he's smiling after running that long and with Asthma! We kept looking for the bald guy with the bright yellow/green running shoes and a few minutes before 11am we saw him at the finish line.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Busy busy busy

Life has been sort of busy lately. Or at least it seems like it anyway. Jacob is getting things wrapped up at Metro and preparing to transfer to Bellevue University. I am working on my class reunion committee, teaching a little piano, and working on Scentsy.
Shae is getting bigger and has his first tooth! He eats really well and actually ate some spaghetti over at my parents' house the other night. I had just fed him some banana oatmeal and was sitting down to eat my dinner. He kept reaching for it, so I gave him a tiny bite and he just kept wanting more! I guess he's not going to be picky like his brother, or his mom.
Joseph is doing very well with his reading and has 3 or 4 books that he likes to read to me and Jacob. We have a great occupational therapist that comes over every week or so and helps Joseph with some of his behavior issues. Sometimes, Joseph gets over-stimulated and stops using his words to communicate (i.e. screams and hits). I'm learning how to use different techniques to help him cope. Yesterday we started using a weighted vest for a little bit and it seemed to keep him calmer than usual. I have some sewing patterns to make my own since we are borrowing one from the school right now. I also might make him a weighted blanket so he can hopefully stay in his own bed all night. Joseph is also going to start preschool at the end of August after we get back from Utah.
All of the things that have happened since we moved into our apartment really makes me feel that we were supposed to move when we did. The school district has done so much to help Joseph already. He has more testing to go through before we know exactly what the diagnosis is (Asperger's or PDD). I am truly grateful for all the wonderful teachers that are helping us. I was really starting to feel like I was just a bad mother who couldn't handle my 3 year-old, but now I know that I'm not a terrible mother. I can finally hope that things will be just fine.

Saturday, April 18, 2009


So, thanks to Josh and Laura, Jacob and I were able to have the evening to go and play Bunco with a bunch of people from church. It was a lot of fun! The game itself is pretty fun, but it was more the company that made it a blast. I won a bag of Lindt truffles (which I used to pay our babysitters) for tying for the most "Bunco's" and Jacob won a toy fishing pole for having the most rounds lost. We had a great time and can't wait to do it again sometime!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Free Plug-in warmer

Anyone who places a Scentsy order before noon on Saturday will be in a drawing to receive a FREE plug-in warmer! Come see me anytime to check out the scents!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Growing up so fast

Here's a cute picture of Joseph before we left for church on Sunday. He looks so grown up.

Pictures of our new home

Here are a few pictures of our new apartmentOur bedroom - without any crib!!

The boys' bedroom - toys everywhere, as usual. I would have picked up, but Shae is napping in the pack-and-play.

Our living room and kitchen (and Joseph)

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Shae is growing! My parents bought him this t-shirt in Hawaii back in October and now it fits him!
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Tuesday, March 10, 2009

We Moved!

Just a quick note - We moved a few days ago and so I haven't had a chance to really update the blog. We are still in Bellevue - we just got an apartment. We finally have our own room! Joseph actually slept all night in his own bed and in his own room!!!!! I'm a little excited about that because he is 3 years old and this has never happened before! I'll try to get some pictures posted soon!

Friday, February 20, 2009

It's been a while

Well, it's been a while since I updated this blog. So, here's what's up:
Shae started eating solids and is really into it. He's more a fan of the veggies than fruits, but I guess that's okay. He's gained almost 2 pounds in the last month.
Joseph is getting taller everyday. His doctor wanted us to have his speech and behavior "evaluated" because he screams at her every time we go. Now, Joseph has had a problem with screaming in the past, but we turned off the TV, and his screaming dramatically decreased. So, now he only has screaming fits when he is in a stressful situation - i.e. doctor's visits, tired, or hungry. I don't mind the doctor recommending this, but I am frustrated that she hasn't seen the calm side of him. Luckily, when the evaluation screener came to the house, she saw Joseph's apprehension to a new person (he screamed a little), but after 15-20 minutes, he totally warmed up to her and even showed her all his sign language and recited almost his entire vocabulary to her. So, we'll see what happens at the actual evaluation.
Jacob and I are working on saving money to buy a house. Jacob is also working on his degree and has saved his favorite classes for the end - Math (sarcasm). He has 3 classes to take sequentially and then he will be done. I am hoping that Scentsy will start out well here so we can get into a house sooner. I think that's all our updates for now. I hope to add some pictures soon, too.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Party Invitation

Shawn's Scentsy kick-off Party!

Tuesday March 3rd, 6-7pm
(open house - come and go anytime)

Location - my house (e-mail me for directions)
AND On-line for my friends who are far away or can't make it
Order on-line anytime!

Refreshments will be served
Preview the catalog at my website:

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Scentsy, here I come

So, I am now officially a Scentsy consultant. After a lot of thinking, and my poll a few weeks ago, I decided I would give it a shot. We got our state tax refund last week, so I used some of the money to buy my starter kit. I am planning on having my first party Tuesday March 3rd at 6ish. For those of you who are not in town, I will probably have an "on-line party" also. I think it will be fun and I really like the products. I really like the warmer of the month for February (see picture).
I haven't blogged lately for a few reasons. For one, I had a really terrible cold all last week, so I didn't do much of anything. Secondly, I got a facebook profile, so I've been spending some time getting that all set up. I prefer blogging, so I am getting back to it now.

Monday, January 26, 2009

I like this quote

I heard a quote yesterday in Relief Society that I really liked, so I thought I would post it. It is from Tom Paine's "The Crisis: December 23, 1776"
" . . . throw not the burden of the day upon Providence, but 'show your faith by your works,' that God may bless you."

Friday, January 23, 2009

Something kinda funny

I had given Joseph a snack at the table and went into the living room to nurse Shae. Joseph was really quiet, so I went into the kitchen to check on him and this is what I found.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

What were you doing?

This day in history may prove to be very significant. So, I thought maybe in 10 years, I would try to remember what I was doing while Barack Obama took the oath of the office of President of the United States. As I enjoyed our new President's speech, I was nursing Shae to sleep. After that, I helped Joseph eat his breakfast of pancakes. During what will probably become one of our nation's defining moments, I was doing what I do every day. I do appreciate that President Obama talked about how our nation's greatness is a result of those "obscure" people. People who work day after day. He specifically mentioned those who take the time to "nurture a child." At that moment, I thought, maybe, just maybe, this President is still aware of the life of the average American. I hope that proves to be true. Jacob was transporting children to and from school like he does every day, listening to some of the inauguration on the radio. So. . . what were you doing?

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Working from home? Poll

Well, I keep debating about whether or not to become a Scentsy consultant. Scentsy is a company that makes wax warmers. (Think candles with no flame, but all the yummy smell.) The warmers are really pretty and they have one for pretty much any decor. I also like the fact that the wax is warmed by a 25 watt bulb and the wax does not get hot enough to burn your skin. (This I know from experience because Joseph stuck his whole hand in some melted wax.) The wax comes in reusable containers so you can pour it back in and change scents or combine them. The start-up cost is $99, which is pretty reasonable compared to other companies. Let me know what you think in the poll to the right. Thanks!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Joseph's Birthday

Joseph turned three on Saturday. Unfortunately, there was an ice storm, so we had to delay his party until the next day after church. Joseph also has a really bad cold, so he wasn't in the best mood. His favorite part was blowing out the candles. We put the candles on his own piece of cake so he wouldn't get anyone else sick. He wanted us to re-light the candles so he could blow them out a second time and Jacob got a video of it.

Joseph licking the icing off the Wall-e toy on top of his cake

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Top 5 for 2008

Here's our family Top 5 events of this past year (in no particular order):
1. Shae Everett was born on September 9th.
2. Jacob lost 40 pounds.
3. Mom and Dad Harwood got out of Hurricane Central and moved here (tornado central?). We are glad they are here.
4. Jacob made the Dean's list at Metro every quarter he had classes.
5. Jared, Allison, and Aiden visited us this summer before moving to Japan.

Happy New Year everyone!