Quick Trip to LAby Angie

28 Apr 2014
12:04 am

Jim and I were up bright and early Monday Morning: he was off to a dentist appointment and I went to Zumba. It was my first time back since before our trip to Georgia. Several people noticed that I was no longer attached to my O2 tank and took the time to comment on that and offer encouragement. One sister (who is a nurse) stopped me on the way out to ask how I was doing and how long I had had respiratory problems. I explained that it was actually a complication of my heart problem. Her eyes got wide and she asked if I would mind telling her about it. I told her about my single ventricle and fontan surgery and was surprised to see her almost in tears. She has a 14-month old granddaughter who was born with the same defect! She is being treated at Primary Children’s Medical Center (my home-away-from-home for so much of my childhood) and is receiving the newer 3-stage fontan over the next three years. We talked for almost an hour, and it was a really sweet experience.

That afternoon, I helped put together a luncheon for the family of one of the sisters I visit teach, whose mother passed away last week. It felt good to reciprocate some of the service that we have so abundantly received. For Family Home Evening, we watched Elder Uchtdorf’s talk, “Gratitude in Any Circumstances,” and then wrote some Thank You cards. Tuesday was Earth Day, so Jim and I had a picnic during his lunch break, complete with Jelly Beans for treat (because it was also National Jelly Bean Day).

Friday night, we drove down to North Hollywood to visit Alex and Melinda and pick up some things from Grandma & Grandpa Packard’s house on Pickford Way. We drown down after work and got rained on a bit, but got to see some really beautiful clouds, a gorgeous sunset, and even a rainbow. After it got dark, we even saw some giant flashes of lightning that lit up the entire sky, but we didn’t hear any thunder. We made good time and got in just before midnight.

Saturday morning, Jim got up early and helped to put together Alex’s new computer (which Jim helped him pick out). At about 10, he went to pick up Jason from LAX and they spent the afternoon in Culver City with Aunt Debbie, Mark, and his crew (David, Leslie Ann, their kids, & cousin Deb). Jim picked up some stuff for us and for Jon and then returned to finish the computer. In the meantime, Melinda and I left Aurie with Alex while we went to help with this year’s Mormon Helping Hands project: cleaning up flood debris and trash along the LA River. Mel & I chatted and sang hymns and primary songs and, despite it being hard work, we were having a great time. Then, in a moment of very poor judgment, I fell into the river. I went completely under, but quickly got my footing and stood up in murky water about four feet deep. Climbing out was quite a challenge and I was a complete mess but I was soon safely on solid ground and heading to the information desk to get a few scratches patched up. The only serious casualty was my phone, which was in my back pocket. We’ve yet to see whether it will survive the ordeal.

We went home, got cleaned up, and picked up Aurie, then headed out to the LA Zoo where we saw lions and giraffes, and even one of my favorite animals: a sloth. We spent several hours there, then met up with the boys for dinner at The Island’s, a Hawaiian Burger place in LA that we fell in love with after going there with Grandma and Grandpa a couple years ago. Alex and Melinda had never been, so we introduced them to it, and they enjoyed it too. For dessert, we stuck with the Hawaiian theme by getting Hawaiian shave ice, which was also delicious.

This morning, we got up early and started our trek home. Jim had to stop by the Pickford Way house, so it added a bit to our trip, which meant we walked in to church just a couple minutes late, but I guarantee we left for church before anyone else in that congregation. Of course, we drove 350 miles to get there, but who’s counting… :)

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