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Friday, May 27, 2011


It's hard to believe you are already seven!

It seems just like yesterday you were the bright-eyed, inquisitive little newborn in the hospital who would get excited when mom and dad came in.

Thank you for being our little boy. We love you, and we wish you many, many more birthdays to come.

Love mom, dad, Tyson, Wesley, Wyatt, and Pughetti

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Ashton's Attitude, Thoughts, and Celebrations.

We have been talking to Ashton about what he can expect when we go to the Mayo clinic. We feel that if there are no surprises, he will be better prepared to face what is to come. I have been very proud of him. He has shown no fear, and seems to have an attitude of 'alright, let's go get it done'. Mom and dad have been able to lean on him a bit for more strength.

We have had a few things happen around us to help us realize we are not alone. A young lady at my wife's school had her heart stop during P.E. She was saved by quick actions by the school staff, and now is in the care of Primary Children's Hospital. A family from my school had a young man drown at a weekend party; efforts to revive him were not successful. He was such a sweet little kid, and always showed kindness to those around him.

When one experiences a tragedy it is easy to feel that you are the only people to ever experience grief and heartache. My wife often asks me why we were chosen to face these trials, and why some never have anything bad happen to them. I don't believe these things are predetermined so I am not able to answer her. What I am noticing, though, is the fact that we have more empathy towards families who are facing their own trials. We have seen the kindness of others as they have shown us support. Now, I think I can answer this when she asks again: "Why is not important. What is important is that we are learning to become better, stronger people through the human experience.

Enough of the grimness, we have parties to get to. My little boy is turning seven tomorrow, May 27th. He shares his birthday with his best friend, Cheryl. He will go from her party, straight to his own. We are going to give him a party to remember since his summer will be spent in recuperation. We reserved a spot at Pirate Island Pizza, and he invited friends from school and around the neighborhood. One last bash, and then five days until we head to the Mayo. We will keep everyone up to date with this blog, so make sure to keep checking back.

More info.

Thought I would share some more info with y'all. A lot of people have been asking what is to occur during the upcoming surgery. There are a few good sites that give a great overview of what is going to happen in Minnesota, as well as what exactly is going on in his heart. These sites are found here: (the second video is the procedure Ashton will be getting).

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Another Testament of Human Kindness and the Lessons We've Learned

This is just too sweet. The picture is of Brindley, another first grader at Panorama Elementary. She and her friends (including a sweet young lady by the name of Caiya) have created jars and have gone around collecting money for Ashton. In just a little under a week, these kids have collected around 100 dollars for us.

I've alluded previously to the fact that my wife and I are terribly prideful. We like to be as self sufficient as possible. We have really had to open ourselves up to ask for help, but when your child's life is at stake you will do anything it takes. This has been a great exercise for us, though. I believe that from everything a lesson is learned. Our lessons this go 'round have been that there are truly good people out there. We have learned to be gracious and humble. We have learned what it is to receive, as well as give. These kids have taught us graciousness in innocence. They recognize a peer in need, and they go forth of their own volition to help. As adults, especially in the U.S., we tend to lose this. Sometimes, it takes a child in need to bring back this childhood trait.

May you all be blessed with the ability to see the world through the eyes of a child. Just like Brindley, Caiya, and friends.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Yard Sale News.

Thanks to all who donated and attended, the yard sale was a huge success. I expected to raise around 1000 from this yard sale; I was hoping for more, but not expectant of much more. Earlier I was telling people that we had raised 4100 dollars which is 4 times what I expected. I just looked at the final count and we were able to deposit 4500 dollars into Ashton's Heart Fund. This is incredible. Almost everything went. What did not go is being donated to the Dove Center which is a very worthy cause in my opinion.

Thank you, everyone, for everything you do. We were once again very moved by the generosity of this community.