The Preslar Family

The Preslar Family
December 2017

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Memorial Encounters

For our Memorial Day, we decided to totally overdo it. It was really a fun day. We started out with a "first-thing" trip to the zoo, followed by grocery shopping, several hours at the park and then landing, exhausted, at a BBQ. We were wiped out.

I'm so glad we made it to the zoo. "First thing" is the only way to go - be there five minutes before it opens. We really wanted a glimpse of the visiting "ghost of the Bayou" - a pure white, though not albino, alligator. I had a hard time getting a good picture of it, but it really was a sight to see. If you get a chance, I recommend a visit. After the alligator, we high-tailed it to the farthest corner of the zoo: the big cats exhibit. Because we were early enough we were the only people there, and we were rewarded for our efforts. The cats are quite active in the mornings and we had an uncontested up-close view of them. The Amur leopard was especially intriguing, and the new tiger, who was pacing all over the place, is always a favorite.

Then we strolled over to the giraffes - again, we had an almost-alone chance to watch one animal playing and eating with his ball-on-a-stick. This is not a great shot of the giraffe itself, but you can see where he was:

Once we started back towards the entrance we hit the wall of people who all wanted to go to the zoo at the same time. That was our cue to leave - 90 minutes at the zoo is just perfect. For the rest of the day, Troy spent time with his Dad so the kids and I hit a couple grocery stores and spent a gorgeous few hours at Laird Park. Laird Park will always be a favorite for us - although my parents no longer live in that neighborhood. We call it "Oma's Old Park." The weather couldn't have been any better - Warm, cloudy, slight breeze. The kids were so happy that we stayed for more than two hours, which left us just enough time to rush home, throw together some food, and head over to Zach and Charisse's for a backyard BBQ. Then we all came home and crashed.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

The 25th of May

Always a magical day in my book. I turned 34 yesterday - thirty FOUR. The nice thing about being married to Troy is that I never feel old - because he turned 34 three and a half years ago. Okay, okay, that's not the only reason I like being married to Troy. Here's what I love about my husband. Every year for my birthday, he surprises me. I never ask for a gift because it's too fun to see what he'll pick out. I always love seeing what someone gets you for a gift because it says something about how that person sees you. Troy is excellent at remembering something I said weeks or even months ago, or thinking about what I might really like. He's great at this. I wish I were as talented at choosing gifts for him. This year he gave me some nice hair care products. This may not sound very special to you, but he listened to a conversation I had with my sister in law, and then researched out the very best equipment. I'll just say that the people at the beauty-supply shop were very impressed that a guy was picking out nice stuff for his wife without even having been asked. Way to go, Troy.

The day was a lovely one. My friend Becky watched my kids for a couple of hours while I some time to myself. I filled that time by buying underwear and vacuuming out the car. It's amazing how your self-esteem can rise with clean underwear and having a car no longer littered with crusty french fries, wrappers, crumbs, dirt...etc. etc.etc. So, yes, I purchased some self-esteem for myself.

Then my friend Terri Lyn decided that our neighborhood friends needed to gather at the park for lunch. My birthday was just a good excuse to do it. I'm so grateful for the wonderful people in the 'hood. We went to Laird park where the shade was glorious and the only trouble was that the slides were too hot. I appreciated so much the effort TL went to - normally I feel a little silly having a birthday party for myself, but this year it felt good. My eyes have been opened a little to the gratitude I feel at being surrounded by beautiful souls.

After a little quiet time at home my parents took the kids while Troy and I got some Italian food. How does this sound: Shrimp and asparagus risotto. Yum. Plus, in the afternoon the kids and I put together a lemon cake to share with my parents. I really just made it because I thought the kids would feel bad if we didn't sing "Happy Birthday" and blow out candles and stuff. Turns out, they didn't care very much. They didn't even eat a bite of the cake. That's okay. I think they had a good time making it.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Where are that girl's parents?

I didn't know how to title this entry. So many things came to mind, such as, "How to be a bad parent" or, "Serenity NOW!" or "Who's child are you REALLY?" My daughter has decided that now is the time to give us a serious run for our money. You know how sometimes you know something is going on for your child - it could be a new tooth, it could be early onset of the terrible twos, it could be a rare pancreatic don't know, there's no way to find out, you just know that it's SOMETHING SERIOUS.

Yeah, something's up with RAP. She's doing that fun thing where she cries and cries and cries. You ask her what she wants, and she tells you. For example, some chocolate milk. So you get the milk. You pour it into a cup. She cries for the plain milk. So you give it to her, and she screams that milk is yucky. So you offer to put the chocolate in it (anything to stop the screaming, which is also accompanied by thrashing her body so violently you nearly drop her) and then she cries and cries and cries because her milk is now brown. Or because you put it in the wrong cup. And suddenly all you can think to do is throw the milk at her, which of course you refrain from doing because, after all, you're trying to retain some level of acceptable parenting here. So you put her and the milk down and walk away. That's when the real tantrum starts, which is surprising because you thought that it already was going full force. Wow. I nearly threw a few tantrums myself over the past few days. What this leads to is that I will now do anything R wants. ANYTHING. There, I said it. I'll do whatever she wants just to keep the child happy. Today this included letting her sit on the counter and gnaw on an entire block of cheese. See photo.

The thing is, although the past three days have been dreadful, she manages to throw in just enough absolutely darling behavior to save her life. I really thing she's a clever and charming girl. Of course she's got something going on - we all do. She's sensitive to the emotional signals in her house, even though she doesn't understand the details. I'm not surprised that she's had a difficult time. We all have. It's just the FURY with which her emotions are released. Frankly, I'm a little afraid for the future. Can you imagine her at 13? Me neither.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007


We're back to spring weather in SLC, after a short burst of early heat. Glad to enjoy May while it lasts. I'm sorry to say I always dread the summer for its heat. I'm going to try to focus on enjoying the sun, the perfect evenings and not get too grumpy about the heat.

RAP helped me do some yard work today. I couldn't help but post a shot of my lovely girl.

I'm so excited because my garden is thriving this year. I absolutely love shade plants: columbine, bleeding hearts, hostas, ferns... I started putting plants in this spot in front of our house several years ago, and they're all really gorgeous this year. For the past couple of years we've had work going on, like replacing our roof last year and replacing the windows the year before that just flattened my shade garden. But this year it has room to really grow. Plus, since Troy stripped the paint off the house and cut down our ugly (and dead) trees in front, it looks great. Okay, the porch is in need of some serious attention, but that is a project for another year. Probably another decade. I was worried that cutting down the trees would let too much sunlight on the garden and kill the plants, but so far so good. We still have a maple in front that protects it from the harsh afternoon sun. This is probably not information anyone was interested in, but there you go. It is what made me happy today!

And now I hear Troy coming in the front door with a raspberry concrete from Nielsen's frozen custard for me....nothing is better than that!

Mamma's Day

We had a really nice Mother's day. Actually, we skipped out on church. It would have been our first day back since we lost Matthew, and I knew it would be emotional anyway, and it being Mother's Day on top just seemed like too much. So, we enjoyed a morning at home together and then in the afternoon Troy took the kids to the park for a bit so I could have a nap. Here's CTP jumping off the bleachers at Sunnyside park:

He was very proud to show me what a good jumper he is.

Then we headed over to Troy's folk's house for a nice evening with them as well as Troy's oldest brother Rick. Dinner was terrific, plus the evening's weather was so nice that we just frolicked in the back yard for hours. Well, I left most of the frolicking up to C and R. They sure had a great time. R, it seems, fears nothing. She loves being tossed around like crazy. She kept running up to Troy with her arms in the air crying, "Daddy! Up High!" And this is what he would do:

Please don't call DCFS. She was screaming with delight.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Matthew's Blanket

I'll begin by saying that we are so so grateful for every bit of love and care that we have received over the past week. Flowers, food, gifts, calls, hugs - every little bit has been precious to us and a reminder of so many wonderful people that we are blessed to know and love, and be loved by. Great. Now I'm crying. Again. Anyway, our dear friends Mike and Misty came by the other evening with a very precious gift; a blanket they made to help us remember Matthew. We call it the Matthew Blanket, and it is soft and warm and sweet, and filled with the love of our friends.

During this experience, CTP has been pretty steady, occasionally asking questions but really not showing much emotion. But one thing is his attachment to the Matthew Blanket. Every time he cuddles up for a show or goes to bed he asks for it and just cocoons inside of it. Somehow this comforts me, to see C reaching out for comfort from something that brings so much to us.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Our Sad News

I think most people who read this blog already know about our story, but I thought I'd record a little of our experience over the past week. About a week ago I noticed that I could not feel our baby kicking in my belly anymore and that it had been a number of days since I had. By Thursday I really knew there was a problem, so I went into my clinic to check for heart tones. Indeed, we could not find any, so after two ultrasounds it was confirmed that our baby boy had passed away, probably about a week prior to this.

Friday morning, Troy and I checked into Salt Lake Regional Medical center, luckily just across the street from our home. Because I was 23 weeks along this was considered a stillbirth and not a miscarriage. We were admitted to labor and delivery where I was administered drugs that induced labor, and our boy, whom we named Matthew, was born at 1:30 am, Saturday morning. We were able to hold him and see his tiny body. This was a precious and indescribable experience.

Although our hearts are heavy and we are certainly grieving the loss of our son, Troy and I feel grateful for the tender things we have felt and that we have been drawn closer than ever before through this trial. We can feel, almost tangibly, the presence of peace and comfort that surrounds us. We are grateful, more than we can express, for the two beautiful and creative children that we have, and grateful also for outpouring of love and support that we have received. Most importantly, we are grateful for our faith, and that Matthew was able to come to us, even for so short a time.