Category Archives: Friends & Family

Veteran’s Day

Today is the day–and it goes beyond our political views or how we feel about the current war.

If you know someone who has served our country or see someone in uniform, please take the time to thank them for their service.

Obviously, I hold one in particular very close to my heart ūüôā

When I asked Jason who else from his military service we could honor, he said there are just too many to mention them all.

But, here are a few that are especially close to our hearts: Jordan Francis, Josh Savage, Mark Morton, Jason Loveday, Chad Gross & Christian Skoglund.

Thank you for your serving us in this special way.

Christian Skoglund 1976 – 2007

by Jason

My friend Christian died on this day one year ago. He was a helicopter pilot in the Army and died in a crash. Over this last year, I have thought a lot about him.

The last time we spoke was two days before my wedding when he called me from Italy. I miss him. He was a great friend.

Christian and another roommate Rich had this on our house answering machine when we lived together during flight school.

For other videos here is his wife’s Youtube page.

I love you, Christian.

Don’t forget the lab geek goggles

Alyssa is my mad scientist friend. She sits in her lab (pre-baby, mind you) and does experiments with things that cannot be seen with the naked eye. At least I think that’s what she does.

I used to picture her in a lab coat with little glass vials all around her, pouring things back and forth between the vials. Then I went to visit her there and she was wearing regular clothes and sitting at a computer. That was a bit anti-climactic and disappointing.

But when you’ve put in years (how many is it?) getting your PhD in Physical Chemistry, you have every right to be called a mad scientist, no matter how many undergrad student papers you grade.

Knowing this, only Alyssa would send me this email:

“So last night I dreamt you were in labor in a bed like at a camp or something… I was there with you and you were all calm and doing great (just like I said you would be… ūüėČ and it seemed I was about to deliver your baby but I felt we should try and find Jason, though I wasn’t sure how much time we had. ha ha. So anyhow if I come visit maybe I’ll bring some sterile neoprene gloves, just in case….”

I responded to her with the quiz I routinely give Jason on emergency birth procedures, which inspired me to write my last post.

A few hours later she sent back this:

“here will be my plan if i’m there:
  1. call 911
  2. pull on my purple neoprene lab geek gloves, with a super-cool TV-doctor snap at the wrist
  3. pull on lab geek goggles to shield the spray…
  4. pray (i guess that should be number 1)
  5. get you in the bathtub. “

She really does have her science background going for her. It just goes to show that those thousands of dollars in tuition and government grant monies really do come in handy for at least some of the academic elite.

Not to mention the fact that she recently gave birth to her own child, so it’s all fresh in her mind. Yes, she’s the one who allowed her friend to do a documentary on her birth and then watched it only a few days later and was NOT traumatized.

The lesson here is that when it comes to friendships the goal is to diversify, diversify, diversify. You’ll have just the right person to call for any situation you might find yourself in.

She’s back

Yes, that’s right. Our furry little friend has returned and resumed her city girl persona.

A country cat she never really was. Clearly you can see this by her refined lounging techniques.

Lizzie’s the transition is of course not without some drama.

Mother Teresa drove her over with all her stuff (how does a cat have that much luggage?) last Friday. We dropped her off at the new house and then went to run some errands.

A few short hours later we returned and she was nowhere to be found. We couldn’t figure it out–all the windows and doors were shut. We called and called for her, looked in every nook and cranny we knew about, and even walked around the neighborhood, just in case she did get outside.

It was a bit nerve-wracking to walk up a few houses to the busy cross street. I imagined her laying there, having been smooshed by a car. Of course she would wait for me, breathing her last breaths only upon my finding her and stroking her lifeless body.

Morbid and dramatic, I know. But this is what goes on in my head.

She was not in the street. But then Jason admitted to me that nonetheless, he was really scared we had lost her. That really upset me.

Jason doesn’t overreact or jump to conclusions about things like I do. In the past he has usually acted indifferent or exhibited mild disdain for Lizzie’s existence. But he was really sad that she might be gone for good.

So, it was quite fitting that he’s the one that found her.

Mom went out to call for her again and I sat down on the front steps, deciding to give up hope. Jason went back into the house and a few minutes later he came back hugging Lizzie very tightly. Lizzie looked annoyed.

Where was she? Well, Jason went up to the guest room and started looking around the bed again. Usually she would go underneath if she was scared in new surroundings. He felt around the covers and then lifted up the pillows. One was unusually heavy. Lizzie had wedged herself inside the pillowcase, snug as a bug in a rug.

She didn’t jump out when he picked up the pillow. She just peered out at him, her big huge pupils expressing her frustration at being found, mixed with some fear. He pulled her out and gave her a big hug.

And we were all reunited once again. We then scolded her for not coming out when we called. When we put her down she promptly went back up to the bed and into the pillowcase.

Since then she’s adapted quite well, coming out to explore and obviously to lounge. She loves the big windows and is taking in the outside world, though she won’t be venturing out there anytime soon. There is a big dog next door and last night we heard a scuffle between him and some neighborhood cats. It didn’t sound pretty.

Lastly, thank you for reading this far and for routinely putting up with hearing about my weird relationship with my pet. Some of you are even nice enough to ask me how she’s doing when you see me.

Just for being so kind, you get a prize–one last photo of Lizzie! She looks hopped up on drugs and it’s not really the most figure-flattering angle, but oh well.

Coeur d’Alene baby shower

This weekend we went back to Coeur d’Alene for a baby shower thrown by Mom and her good friend, Marie.

For those of you who have been following along for a while, you may remember last July’s bridal shower which was also co-hosted by Marie. These sort of parties are quite the treat.

And when I say treat I mean being greeted at the door with champagne and strawberries. And then, of course, moving on to a nice thick slice of white whine cake on a fine piece of china.

Did I mention the gifts? (And I don’t even mean for the baby, though those were great, too!).

There was a gift exchange of sorts, though not entirely white elephant–a set of fancy teas, a cosmetic purse, bath salts, pastry cutters, and much more. Everyone agreed that we should all go shopping with Mother Teresa since she is a great gift-giver.

What was considered white elephant about the exchange was the snatching of items back and forth. Some of those ladies showed no mercy. But, they did go home quite happy with their hauling.

In the midst of consuming cake, each woman went around and shared a piece of advice from their years of parenting (or being parented, or both). This was my favorite part. Here is a sampling of what was shared:

Sherri: “After the baby is born, accept all the help that is offered to you. You will need the rest!”

Mary Anne: “Always discipline with a hug.”

Rae: “Encourage your child’s stimulation rather than always relying on external stimuli.”

Joy: “Talk to your child’s eyes–stop what you’re doing and pay attention when you’re having a conversation with them.”

Judie: “Lots of love isn’t spoiling your child.”

Erin: “Boys will be boys. Just go with the flow – you’ll have to!”

And my favorite:

Mom: “There were so many times when Lisa was little that she’d want my attention–to play a game, show me something, or watch a TV show together. I was usually folding laundry or some other household chore and didn’t stop what I was doing to be with her. She grew up so fast and now I wish I could have those opportunities back. So, Lisa, remember to set aside your to-do list to spend time with your child.”

It was all very fun and the advice made it meaningful. Though I’m not sure I can keep up every single summer with giving good reasons for a party ūüôā

View the rest of the photos here.

A Haggard canoeing catastrophe

When I got back from Coeur d’Alene last Wednesday I came home to not only one Haggard man but three. Justin and Jared, Jason’s brothers were in town for a visit, from Atlanta and Great Falls, Montana, respectively.

Most of the time we just hung out, ate and talked. But on Saturday, the brothers’ last full day in Seattle, Jason suggested we go canoeing at UW. Since it’s been especially hot and four people in a 450 square foot apartment makes things even hotter, I thought getting down to the water would be a refreshing break.

Justin and Jared were mildly (and that’s an exaggeration) interested in canoeing. But we went anyway. And, as you can tell from the title of the post, they were even less amused by the event when all was said and done.

Jason and I put our swimsuits on, filled up our backpack with towels, sunblock and other “essentials” and dragged Justin and Jared into the car. When we got to the UW waterfront stupid mistake #1 happened – we grabbed the backpack (which included our cell phones, wallets and dry towels) to bring with us on the boat.

At this point in telling the story I am asking myself “Who talks on their cell phone while maneuvering a long, skinny, cumbersome boat across a busy canal–especially when their pregnant and trying to maintain their already-impaired balance?” I don’t know. Certainly not me. So why did I bring my cell phone???

Needless to say, we hopped in our canoes no problem (backpack and all). But as we did, I realized I forgot to bring the camera. “Oh man! This would’ve been great for the blog!” I thought.

And so marks stupid mistake #2 – thinking that bringing my really nice camera into the boat was a good idea in the first place. In my common sense brainfart I mentally kicked myself for missing this photo opp.

In Jason & I’s canoe we (and when I say “we” I mean Jason) immediately came up with a military plan of action. He was to do the steering (of course) from the back and I was supposed to paddle as hard as I could. I whined about forgetting the camera about every time I had to switch arms from exhaustion.

The first thing we had to do was cross the busy canal without getting hit. Jason and I moved quickly. I remember looking back and seeing Jared & Justin behind us, somewhat half-heartedly paddling, all the while giant yachts approaching their boat. They didn’t seem to be concerned. Jason started yelling at them to keep moving and they picked up the pace.

Despite the mild drama, we were able to safely pass through the canal without getting hit by anything. We then passed under the 520 bridge and into a much calmer area. I started feeling a lot cooler so close to the water and enjoyed seeing all the ducks swimming around.

Within less than five minutes of canoe toodling, stupid mistake #3 happened. Jared had discovered the ducks as well and as I looked to my left I saw him start paddling hard, pulling him and Justin as fast as he could to try to hit a nice, cute little female mallard with their boat. She was swimming away with all her might, her wings almost out of the water as she went.

This continued for maybe three yards. Then Jared & Justin effortlessly tipped over and sunk into the water. In the thrill of trying to kill an innocent duck Jared had gotten reckless in his paddling and lost his balance. I don’t know what Justin was doing in the back, but he didn’t put up any fight in going down with his brother.

After the immediate shock (and relief that the duck was able to get away), I quietly chuckled to myself and thought “I’m glad that wasn’t me.” Stupid mistake #4 – thinking I was immune to involvement in, what was to be, a several-part disaster.

At first we couldn’t see Jared or Justin behind their capsized canoe. But as we got closer I spotted Justin bobbing in the water with his life vest on, his arm stuck straight up in the air holding his cell phone. This is probably the most intelligent decision made during the whole ordeal.

Jared was next to him with a goofy look on his face, forgetting entirely that his own phone still remained in his pocket, at least a foot under water.

As we pulled up to the scene of the accident I started to get a bit nervous. I wasn’t that concerned about getting wet, but I mentally started to tally how much replacement cell phones would cost. I decided that ours were NOT going to have the same fate as Justin & Jared’s. I was not in the “we’re all family, so let’s stick together” mood. In my mind it was every man for himself!

Jared & Jason were able to flip over the canoe and rid it of water. Jared quickly scrambled up into it before we could discuss what to do next. Jason wasn’t sure if Justin should also try to get in or just swim to nearby shore. Stupid mistake #5 – they decided to try getting him in the boat.

Jason: “Here, I’ll hold on to your canoe and Jared, you try to keep it in balance, too. Elisabeth, lean to the right of our boat to offset the weight.”

“But wait, that doesn’t seem right. That’s not offsetting the weight, that’s adding to it. I should lean to the left. I DON’T WANT US TO GO DOWN, TOO!” I said.

“Elisabeth, it’s right, just trust me! You’re not going to get wet.”

Stupid mistake #6 – Jason having enough confidence in himself to make that kind of promise to his wife.

At first there was a glimmer of hope–Justin scrambled up about halfway into the canoe. Maybe stupid mistake #5 wasn’t so stupid after all.

But then stupid mistake #7 happened, which completely trumped stupid mistake #5. Either Jason had told me to lean the wrong way or in my directional dylesxia (I get left and right mixed up), I picked the wrong side to put my weight on.

That coupled with Justin giving way back into the water, and we all proceeded to go down in flames (or I guess splashes would be a better word).

Something inside of me thought that if I just kept sitting inside the boat (as it tipped over, filled with water, and began to capsize) that somehow I would escape the situation (stupid mistake #8). With one hand I was holding onto the side and with the other I was trying to keep the already soaking wet backpack dry. My leg must’ve hit the side of the boat because the next day I discovered a big bruise all the way down my calf.

Finally Jason had to say “Elisabeth, just let go! You’re already in the water!”

At that point, I did let go–of the boat and the backpack. But I held onto my anger and the tears that were start to welling up as a result. “The CELL PHONES! All that MONEY!” I kept thinking. I started having flashbacks to that time (or maybe it was times) in high school that I hit something with my car and was awaiting my dad’s arrival on the scene (and lecture) about how much money it was all going to cost us. Like father like daughter.

In my mental chaos I started scurrying around, trying to grab the flip flops, hat, sunglasses, paddles and life vests that were floating around us, mostly because it made me feel like I was in control of the situation (like mother like daughter).

But, as I swam to get a paddle and saw Justin aimlessly bobbing in the water, having given up on his cell phone after the second full immersion, I started to laugh out loud. That was God’s grace to me and the anger started to dissipate. What was done was done and, well, it was pretty funny.

Several other canoes of young people came by and offered their condolences and their help. They were nice enough not to laugh (to our faces). They even offered to take our stuff to keep it as dry as possible. It was pointless, but I gladly handed it all over.

Justin continued to bob around, that is, until he spotted a hook on the back of one of the the nice people’s canoes and hitched a ride to the shore.

Jared, trying to be resourceful, hobbled into his half-full-of-water canoe. I’m not sure that he even had paddles at that point, but at least he felt like he was doing something.

As much as Jason is the man for any mission, it took him a while to figure out what to do. I informed him that there was no way in hell I was going to get my ever-increasing belly up over the side of a canoe. I also mentioned that it was doubtful I would let him live down the fact that he had attributed to a pregnant woman falling out of a boat.

So, we started swimming to the nearby shore. Or, in other words, maneuvering through muddy, seaweed-infested waters. Jason towed our canoe back with him. Our backpack and other stuff were there waiting there for us. At least they didn’t get all mucky and gross.

We emptied the canoes, got inside and paddled back to the docks. When I sarcastically asked “Does anyone want to keep canoeing around for a while?” I did not receive an answer.

As you can see, there are no photographs to document the event. On the way back I realized the camera was safe and sound at home, and breathed a HUGE sigh of relief. Cell phones are one thing, the digital camera is entirely another! I thanked God for my forgetfulness while also being quite humbled by my part in the whole ordeal.

Though a part of me (the stupid part), wishes I would’ve had the camera to document the Haggard boat summersion adventure (as if it would’ve remained dry). Or, had some supernatural power to hover over the situation just to give you the amusing visuals.

But then I come to my senses and realize that if you know any of us Haggards, my words and your imagination will be more than enough to reenact the story with a chuckle.

As for the cell phones . . .

Jason dried them out using alcohol and then left them in the oven (turned off, of course. We’re not that stupid). The combination of the alcohol and the warm pilot light in the gas oven resurrected Jared’s phone, though he lost the back to it somewhere in the scuffle. His contract is up to get a new phone anyway.

Justin’s phone works, but only if you plug it in. Which he did in the airport when he missed his flight the next day (another story)–though he couldn’t call any of us to come get him. He does have insurance and can get it replaced for a minimal fee.

Jason’s phone works, but doesn’t vibrate. And I can call people with mine, but the screen is dark. So, if I don’t know the phone number of someone I can’t call them. And I certainly don’t know who is calling me when it rings or if I’ve received any voicemails.

Thankfully, Mom & Dad Haggard and Dad Krohn are sending us their old phones.

So, despite all the stupid mistakes we made, God provided anyway –both bruised egos and replacement cell phones.

A visit to Mother dear

I’ve been in Coeur d’Alene the last few days at the Mother Teresa commune.¬† The weather has been perfect–sunny, clear skies, in the 80s.¬† I love dry,¬†HOT weather!

Thursday evening was girls night out. Mom took Erin, Miranda and I to dinner at Arrow Point and then to Dockside for dessert.

It was such a blessing to see Erin and Miranda.¬† We’ve been friends since middle school and we always seem to fall back into good conversation when we see each other.¬†

Over the weekend Mom and I did the shopping rounds.¬† We hit up the Nordstrom’s Anniversary Sale, Babies ‘R Us and Burlington Coat Factory’s Baby Depot on Friday.¬† We came home quite pleased with our deals, especially on baby items.

Today we went to the Farmer’s Market here in town and saw Tara’s mom, Jessica, who has booth there where she is selling her sewing creations.¬† She let me pick out this cute bag¬†to take home with me.¬† Then we did our usual TJ Maxx visit, a few errands and then arrived home for a nice long nap.

Lizzie has been close by when we’ve been around the house,¬†¬†but I am not too happy about some of the behavior I’ve seen (ie–jumping up on¬†the table¬†and finishing¬†off Mother’s morning oatmeal).¬† But, I still love her anyway.¬† And, we will just nip those nasty habbits in the bud when she comes home (spray bottle here we come).

On the homefront, Jason called today to tell me he sprained his ankle.¬† It’s not an exciting story–he rolled it running in Woodland Park.¬† He then proceeded to sit down on the ground and writhe in pain.

The story does get exciting, though, when he was rescued by a nearby Norwegian family reunion gathering.  They kindly transported him home and helped him up the stairs to our apartment. 

He has remained there ever since, lounging on the bed, his foot up in the air compressed by the belt to my bathrobe. 

Tomorrow I fly home and nurse Jason back to health.  In other words, I will oogle over him incessantly, which will make him feel like a million bucks.

Visits to Mother Teresa’s are always quite relaxing and fun.¬† In another three weeks we will head back over for a boating weekend on the lake!

Minnesota memories

Jason and I got back on Monday from a 4th of July trip to Minnesota. Our time was spent either making memories, looking back on old ones, or getting excited about future ones.

Jason’s parents, Bill & Becky, met us in Minneapolis at my dad’s place on Thursday. The next morning Jason and I got up and walked/ran around Lake of the Isles. Then we went over to Linda’s to celebrate the 4th and Dad’s birthday with food, family, and a baby shower.

The Haggards, of course, brought an entertaining presence to the Krohn family gathering–especially when Jason flung the birthday cake across the living room floor, sparkly candle and all.

Thankfully, everyone (and the white carpet) survived. And the cake stayed relatively in tact. I’m still beating myself over the head for not video taping the whole ordeal.

That evening we came home pretty wiped out, but Jason, Bill, Becky & I stayed up late talking about marriage and parenthood. They shared what they learned from their experiences and encouraged us in the Lord of the joys of loving one another and our little munchkin. I was very blessed by this conversation. It made me think about all the memories we will all make.

That night (or maybe it was the night before?) I felt Baby H kick for the first time! Very exciting.

On Saturday we went over to St. Paul and toured Victoria Crossing and the old mansions along Summit Ave. Then Jason and I drove over to Wayzata, where I grew up. It was a really special experience to show him a place that holds so many memories for me.

Here’s a brief synopsis of our time there from Jason:

We finished the evening off in Minneapolis with dinner at Cafe Lurcat, a walk through the sculpture garden, and Sebastian Joe’s for ice cream. We thought we were wrapping up the evening, but instead we proceeded to get lost on the way home for about an hour and half.

God had something in mind with our little driving adventure–we stumbled across the church I grew up going to, Mount Olivet. I had no idea where it was or that we were even in close vicinity to it.

So we stopped and looked around in the dark and I told him about my experiences there. I was amazed to think about how God knows every moment and how they all connect, from the beginning of our lives until the end.

On Sunday we went to Bethlehem Baptist for church and then Jason and I visited my Aunt Karen and her lovely brood of animals. She took us to Highland Grill for lunch and then we sat around and chatted for a bit.

We ended that day out to dinner with Dad & Linda at Spill the Wine where we stuffed ourselves with calamari, potato gnocchi, and strawberry shortcake, among other things.

The trip was a total blessing–so much so that I didn’t want to come home! Praise God for celebrations, family, good food, beautiful weather and many memories (past, present and future).

See the rest of the pictures here.

There’s a tall, lanky man living on my couch

Jordan came to visit this Saturday from Korea. He and Elysia are moving here in the fall, so he’s been spending his time looking for housing and getting acquainted with UW, where he’ll be going to grad school.

I have found said Best Man to be an extremely helpful house guest. I came home the other day and he was sweeping my floors. He had also scrubbed my stove top to a glistening white (cleaner than I’ve ever gotten it myself!) AND he bought us groceries.

Are these just a few of Jordan’s many spiritual gifts or the influence of Elysia? I do not know.

We have been eating, as us Haggards often do, although I must admit we have not provided Jordan with many home-cooked meals. But, here is evidence of at least one:

I told Jason to look happy but he clearly refused.

After our dinner we walked down to Molly Moon’s, Jason’s new favorite ice cream joint. Jordan treated us to a banana split with chocolate, salted caramel and balsamic strawberry flavors with a size-able dollop of homemade whip cream. Tired husband and pregnant wife were thoroughly grateful.

View a few more photos here.

Stehekin weekend

This weekend our Community Group went up to Stehekin on Lake Chelan to enjoy Memorial Day. Colleen’s family has a beautiful cabin they graciously let us use for a few days.

The first day we spent traveling, first by Georgia (humongous suburban) and then by boat (3.5 hours).

The rest of our time at Stehekin was spent hiking, biking, playing games, and sitting on the porch or around the fire. We opted out of swimming in the frigid waters, but apparently later on in the summer it is quite pleasant.

We also spent a lot of time eating, as Jason did all the cooking for us. His repertoire included homemade pizza, waffles, grilled and marinated chicken, burgers, and veggies, and lots of snacks.

One of the best things about our trip were all the animals we saw–one big horn sheep on the drive there, a lizard, several deer, a few hawks, and a whole pack of big horn sheep along a mountainside on the boat ride home. VERY exciting.

There were also a lot of ants in the cabin and evidences of a toilet-paper-eating mouse. NOT as exciting wildlife, but wildlife all the same.

And, on one of our hikes Courtney pointed out what sounded like a bear (Alaskans know these sort of things), but nothing attacked us, so we were thankful for that.

For those looking for a place to retreat, Stehekin is a great choice. Very remote, quiet, and absolutely beautiful.

Check out more photos from our trip.