Tuesday, December 15, 2009

November-A Month to be Thankful For!

I have had so many things to be thankful for in November. Josh had decided to seek treatment and make his family a priority. Kylan had surgery on his extra thumb and had it removed. We will miss his "digit" and some people might not call him "Black Jack" anymore but we all feel so lucky that the surgery went so well and he was amazing with his recovery. He was more upset about not being able to eat before surgery than he was after his thumb had been removed. He really LOVES to eat though. I am so thankful that Brooke found a job and is getting a regular paycheck to help pay some of the bills that she has. She works so hard at hair school and is now working at Down East so she has 13 hour days now. I can't tell you how proud we are of her and want you all to know that she has found her calling in life and it is hair! We had a really nice Thanksgiving dinner at the Webb's. I was so grateful that I could have my whole family in one place at the same time. I made them hurry up and take a picture. They were nice enough to indulge me. I and so thankful for my cute daughter-in-law. She is trying so hard to figure out how to take care of Kylan, Josh and most of all herself. I hope that you all get a chance to get to know her. I am most thankful for my wonderful husband who has worked so hard to be the provider, husband, father and now grandfather to our family.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Kits for Jaremy (Part 2)

Thanks for your donations everyone!! As a family we raised $450.00... enough for about 55 kits. I have purchased most of the supplies and need just a few more things that I plan to get tonight.

Remember you are all invited to Jolie's house THIS Saturday at 12:00 noon to help put them together. It is a quick and easy project and should take less than an hour. Remember that many hands make light work. Also, it will be fun for you all to see what your money did and have a chance to give Jaremy a big hug. We look forward to seeing you there.

We are up to 80 kits total and still need 50 more. If you know of any groups that are looking for a project please direct them to me. Also, to those of you who have blogs and facebook... can you please link to Jaremy's blog so we can try and get even more people involved? I put it out there and got a few more donations... imagine if we all did that!! Call me if you need help with linking, etc.

Thanks again for all your support!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Katie's Senior Pictures

Katie Higbee took all these amazing pictures for Katie. She took a variety of shots in different locations. Katie had a blast and Katie Higbee is an AMAZING photographer. Thanks Katie for your talent. I hope that you become famous!

What a WEEK!

I just thought I would update you all about Josh. He is doing amazingly well. He has decided that he really wants to get better for real. Josh went to the County Drug intake and filled out all the paperwork to get into the County Drug rehab unit but it will take about a month. I hope that he can last. He saw a Dr. that specializes in drug rehabilitation and got on a medication that helps a lot of recovering addicts. It's called Cyboxin. I know that he has tried similar things in the past so I hope that this is for real. He also is doing community service and going to the 12 step program. He got so much done this week that it's amazing that he can do that when he is sober. He even went to the Doctor with Renata to see about having Kylans extra thumb removed. It is happening on Tuesday November 24th. I haven't seen Josh like this in 4 years! I am still cautiously optimistic but really pretty encouraged by his progress. He is doing EVERYTHING he is supposed to do for the first time since his first hospital stay only this time he is really clear about things. Renata seems to be a little intimidated by his getting well. I think she might feel that if he is better maybe he won't love her. It is very frustrating to watch her act crazy. I wish that she would just give this a try and it is a real challenge for me to keep my patience with her and to try to help Josh to be kind to her. I see so many self destructive things in their relationship. I am concerned that it is Renata's Birthday and that she wants to go party with her friends. I hope that she will see how stupid that is but I just don't know if she will. I see how she can be sometimes but she has so much insecurity and baggage that I hope that she can overcome what she needs to. Kylan needs them both so much and I worry that they will never grow up and put him first. They are both such self centered people. I just keep praying and trying to love and support without enable them and it is a hard place to be. I don't know what tomorrow will bring but for today I am truly grateful to have my son back!

I love you all and am so grateful for you support.


Monday, November 16, 2009

Kits for Jaremy

Most of you know about what Jaremy is doing out in Mississippi. If you don't you should visit his blog, Jaremy's Journey, and get caught up. The school Jaremy teaches at is located in the lowest performing school district in the lowest performing state in the nation. Most of his students come from the poorest of circumstances and hope for much better. They can not afford to buy their own and when Jaremy supplies them they don't seem to make it back to class. I am currently organizing a few different groups that are putting together supply kits for each one of Jaremy's students (130 total) and was hoping we could get the Higbee family, Jaremy's family, involved. I have talked to Jaremy and identified the basic supplies needed to help him teach these students better. We are going to put the supplies together into kits that will stay in the class room for use there. Our hope is that this project will not only supply the kids with things they need to learn, but also show them that there are people out there that care about their success.

We have already put together a few kits and found that each one costs about $10.00. My hope is that every member of the Higbee family will sponser 1 student by donating enough money to purchase the supplies for 1 kit. I know that money is tight for most of us, but think of what you could give up this month in order to help with this project: 1 lunch at Cafe Rio, one night out at the movies, I'm sure we can all think of one thing we can skip this month. I know, I'm starting to sound like one of those infomercials 'for the cost of just one cup of coffee a day you can feed an entire village'. Anyway...If every member of the J. Marvin Higbee were to do this we could provide about 70 kits for Jaremy's students... that's over half!! Isn't that awesome?

So, if you feel like you can help out in anyway please send the money to me at my house by next Monday. That isn't a lot of time so get on it! We will go buy the supplies and then everyone is welcome to come help put the kits together on Saturday the 28th at 12:00 noon at Jolie's. It's gonna be a blast... I hope you will all help out as you can. We have been working on this with my side of the family. We gave up the family Christmas gift exchange and are instead giving that money to this project. We have collected $230.00 and are purchasing the supplies this afternoon and putting them together next week. And these people only know Jaremy through me... if they can do it so can we. Let's do it!!

(Please forward this email to all of the members of your family... it only goes to mom and dad and the eight kids... let's get the word out there. thanks)

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Josh...the Second Act

Well things did not go as I had hoped. Josh is really good at acting normal. The Psychologist and Psychiatrist at the hospital released him on Friday at 10:00 am where he then went to his Grandma & Grandpa Webb's. He was visibly anxious but saying that he was just fine and did not need to go to detox any more. I was very frustrated because the hospital and his Wasatch case manager had told me that they were trying to get him released into a detox unit to get some more help. Well that is because it is Friday and there must be some unsaid rule that they will release unstable people from the hospital because it is the weekend and they all must get off early so they don't have to deal with it. By 3:00 pm Josh was in full "Panic Attack" mode. I called his case manager and he had gone home so I called Crisis and they were gone for the weekend because I guess that no one has a breakdown on Friday at 3:00 pm. We were really worried that Josh was going to take off to find drugs or hurt himself. Mike drove around with Josh trying to talk some sense into him for about 3 hours. Once again I am so grateful that he was home this week. Josh is harder for me because he seems to be so angry with me when he is like this. Mike finally talked him into going back to his grandparents. They have been so great to help Josh. I was worried that he might do something at their house but if it is just him there he seems to be just fine. Maybe because they have so few things to stimulate him at their house, they don't even have a computer. On Saturday Mike found an inpatient drug rehab place that he and Josh went to check out. His case manager had promised that Josh would be able to go into Foothill and get into the county program but the weekend came and well he is a government employee after all. If you want to know how bad our health care will be if we get the bill passed that Pres. Obama has it just scares me to think that we would be in the hands that Josh has been in for the past 4 years with people who just do their JOB and go home on the weekend not caring for the people and families that are in crisis. They don't do anything until the person is so sick that they are trying to kill themselves and others then they intervene and release them in less that 5 days! The place Mike found is a good place but it is very expensive and Josh can go into the county program for free. We are frustrated because we just want someone to help him and the people that are supposed to be doing that have really not cared all that much! We have to wait until Monday so that he can check with his case manager and see if it is okay that he go somewhere else. Josh is doing okay but Mike is leaving on Monday for 10 days and Josh's situation is still not resolved. I hope that we can figure out how to help him and Pray that he will choose not to give in to the illnesses that he fights every day. I just don't know why it is so hard to help someone when they are really sick! I don't know what tomorrow will bring but I hope it is some real help for Josh and some peace for my family.

Thankyou for all your prayers and love! We really appreciate and are so grateful for our families.

We love you all!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

My son Josh

Dear Family,
I don't know how many of you read the blog but I thought it would be a better way to let you all know about Josh. First of all many of you know the struggle that Josh has had for the past 4 years. Unfortunately he has made some choices that have created sickness instead of health for him when he was faced with some really hard things. When Dallas left him I think you all know that he chose to turn to drugs to deal with his heartbreak and had a serious breakdown and ended up in the hospital for 30 days. He was then court committed to Wasatch Mental Health to help him with his recovery. Josh never could get the hang of being honest with dealing with his pain. He always chose to escape into drugs and alcohol. He has been in Jail more times that I can count on my 2 hands. He ended up having all of his charges moved to Mental Health court a year and a half ago. He has not been totally drug or alcohol free for about 4 years. The last time he ended up in Jail his now wife Renata Mizuni came to tell me she was pregnant with his child. At the time Josh denied that the baby was his. He denied it up until Kylan was born and there was no doubt that he was his son. I think Josh knows that he is a terrible father but he chooses to run to drugs so that he doesn't have to face the fears that he has. He did marry Renata and claim Kylan as his own. For a while he really seemed to be doing better. That is what we all thought. He was getting more and more abusive to Renata and doing more and more drugs. Yesterday November 9th Josh showed up at our house very suicidal, violent and paranoid. We were not home at the time. He called me and was completely out of his mind and was destroying our house. Mike was closer to home than I was so he got there first. Josh not only tried to kill himself but also his dad. We called the police and Crisis. They came and "pink slipped" him (involuntary commitment) into the hospital. He is there now and hopefully will be for 30 days. He was 2 weeks from getting out of Mental Health court. It is a good thing that this happened now because he will hopefully get the treatment that he needs. Just pray that he will choose to take the opportunity to try to salvage some of the good things in his life. I wanted to let you all know because last time I had a $500.00 phone bill. There really isn't anything anyone can do but pray for him. This might be his last chance. So PLEASE Pray...

We are all doing pretty well. The kids were not here at the time and so they didn't have to deal with this yet again. Mike has taken it pretty hard and he has a few cuts and bruises from holding Josh down until the Police got there but he is okay just a little angry and broken hearted. I am continuing to work the system to try to find some way of reaching him. I want you all to know that Kylan is okay. Renata is not so well but maybe this is a good wake-up call for her to get her life in order. My kids are a little tired and numb from hearing and talking about Josh. He consumes so much time and energy in our home. So if we are a little weary of this it's just because we know that there is no instant fix and that this is going to take a really long time.

Life moves on and so must we. Josh will have to figure this out. We love him but he is on his own. I think that it is best for all of us. If you haven't read the book the "Soloist" (the movie is not as good, too Disney) read it and you will have a little understanding of what it is like to live with someone with a mental Illness. We miss the Josh that we all used to know but that Josh is gone and this new one is unpredictable and unsafe. We are learning to live with the fact that we may only see brief glimpses of the old version of our son and brother. I hope that in time we can learn to love and accept this new Josh.

I will keep you updated on the blog. I would really appreciate it if when you call you could ask about Brooke, who is only 4 months away from being a full fledged hairstylist and she is fantastic especially with color. Katie who is learning to become a strong independent young woman and having the time of her life her Senior year of high school and Alec who is the joy and light of our home.

I am so grateful for my family and I feel so blessed that you all love and care about me so much. I hope that this will put your minds at ease knowing that all that can be done is being done and that we are going to be okay.

I love you all!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

October Fun!

October was a really fun month filled with all kinds of activities. Football, awards banquets, Alec's guitar and piano recital, Josh's birthday, Cornbelly's, Lagoon Frightmares and best of all Halloween. It was a really fun month but it makes me tired to think of all the things we did in October I think I'm glad it's November. I wish you all could have been here to go to Jolies for a delicious Chicken Chilly dinner or to Marvins for Family Home Evening where he gave a beautiful lesson on Forgiveness. We miss you all but hope your October was a fun filled one. This is just my family but I would love to see all of the cute costumes and things your family has done. Just post a picture or two in only takes a minute.
Katie is dressed up as a dark Farie or a witch. I don't know what but she has a tu-tu and that is the main point of her costume. When I asked Zach Morgan, Katie's boyfriend, what he was he said he was a "Brown Kid".
Alec went to Cornbelly's at Thanksgiving Point with Kaylee and Mallory Madsen and a friend of Mallory's on Halloween day. It was so much fun and not too crowded. We played games, went throught the Beast and made it through the corn maze.Renata and Josh brought Kylan to our house to
go Trick-or-Treating with Alec for his first Halloween. Kylan wore Alec's Costume he wore for his first Halloween.

Kylan and Alec are ready to hit the Trick-or-Treat scene!

Alec was a "Dead Slash" the guitar player from "Guns and Roses". Slash is Alec's nick name!

Alec got the Outstanding Offensive player award for his team. His coach said that they couldn't have played as well with out his leadership. He was Offensive Team Captain.

Alec had his first Piano Recital. He played three songs, Alouette (a French folk song), Ode to Joy by Beethoven and a song that he composed himself called The Beautiful Destiny. We were so proud of him! He has only been playing for one year and he is doing great!

Mike, Alec and I had a really fun time at Lagoon Frightmares! We got to ride some of the fun rides and go through the spook alley's that they have at Halloween.

Katie and Alex Richardson got all spooked out for their Senior Dance "Thriller" at the last Lehi home football game of the season. It was really spooky!

Josh had his 25th birthday this October 16th! Yes Josh is 25 but funny thing is so am I. We went to a movie and then went as a family to Goodwood to celebrate Josh's Birthday.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Baby Kylan

When Kylan was about 6 weeks old we had a photo shoot with him and Renata. Karen assisted. It was so fun and he was so cute. He has changed so much since then so I am glad we caught these images of him while he was still so teeny-tiny. What a sweet little baby... and what a wonderful addition to the family!
And just for good measure: because I have NEVER
had a baby pee so much in one photo shoot!

Jaremy's Going Away Party

Before Jaremy left for Mississippi, Jolie and Greg had everyone over for desserts and some fun around the fire pit. We also had an opportunity to go around the room and tell Jaremy our memories of him and wish him well on his adventure. Of course, we also watched the "Last f the Mohicans" DVD, courtesy of Karen. That just gets funnier every time we see it. These are just a few of the pictures I took (I tried to get everyone). It was so fun to spend time with Jaremy before he left.
Remember to follow Jaremy's adventures at

Lehi High School Graduate

Even though Alyssa is well into her first semester of college, I wanted to make sure we got her graduation noted here on the family blog. We had a super quick photo shoot as she was running off for the festivities. It was the worst time of day for pictures, really windy and super hot, but we got some cute shots. Here are 3 of my favorite.Alyssa is such a cute girl! I'm sure I speak for all of you when I tell her how proud we are of her. She is an excellent example in our family and a joy to be around. We all wish you the best, Alyssa!!