The Harnisch Family

The Harnisch Family

Sep 26, 2011

KPTM News at 9 pays us a visit

Here is the story that aired during the news last night!

The reporter, Meghan McRoberts came over around 1:00 yesterday afternoon and was very nice, we had a lot of fun.  Both Macy & McKenzie did a great job. Macy was especially hamming it up for the camera! surprise surprise right?
I wasn't sure how it was going to go as the interview took place right in the middle of Macy's regularly scheduled naptime...but she didn't seem to be too phased.
Funny thing.  I had the house 100% picked up and tidy, every toy PUT AWAY, it was lookin' good...but within minutes after the reporter's arrival, the girls were "unleashed" and started unloading the toys!  I was cringing the whole time, I just wanted the house to look clean for the TV interview (which lasted about an hour), but nope,  that was not to be.  geesh.   I guess it was okay as she said she wanted to get some footage of them playing and interacting comfortably in their natural setting...hehe
You should know, Macy has turned into quite the MESS MONSTER as of late.  Throwing her toys all over the place, ALL the TIME!  While I am proud, impressed and happy that she LOVES to play with her toys, she has QUITE the imagination already, this could start to get exhausting after a while.

Joe and I were at Larry and Sharon's home for Dinner last evening. Several of my new co-workers were there. The party was just starting to wind down around 9:00pm, the start of the news, so everyone moved indoors and we had a viewing party of sorts. It was really fun :-)

A special thanks to Meghan and KPTM Fox 42 for taking the time to focus on our story. It means a lot to us as well as the rest of our Down Syndrome community!

Sep 22, 2011

Buddy Walk tees

We are starting to get pretty excited about the upcoming 2011 Buddy Walk...we've already had LOTS of people confirm that they are going to come out for the walk on the 15th.  YAY!  It's all about generating awareness, so the more family & friends we can have out there the merrier  :-)
The "active" members of Midland University's Pi Epsilon sorority will also be joining us!  At least those girls who are not V-Ball players, as they have a game that day.  I have been working with a couple of the girls in setting up the details and designing the tees, etc.  It has been fun going back & forth with them - they are SOO sweet & genuinely excited to be a part of team "Movin' with Macy".  :-)

Here is a mock-up of what we settled on...the final version will probably be modified slightly, once the artist gets his hands on it. 
front  :-)
The designs are at the print shop as we speak.  Can't wait to see the finished product!  We've ordered about 100 of them, sizes ranging from 3 months to there's something for everyone.  :-) whew!

As you recall, The bumble-bee is a symbolic representation that I find inspiring. 
According to 20th century folklore, the laws of aerodynamics prove that the bumblebee should be incapable of flight, as it does not have the capacity (in terms of wing size or beats per second)
to achieve flight with the degree of wing loading necessary. The Bumble Bee does not care what some scientist has to say, so it keeps flying anyway!

We tell our Macy to do as the bumble-bee and
"fly baby FLY"!!
and the butterfly is cute  :-) 
In other news...if you happen to find yourself in New York City this weekend, be sure to swing by Times Square to check out Macy's mug (along with 200 others with DS from around the world) on the big screen.  NDSS video showtime's are 10:15am & 10:35am!
To promote this on a local level I sent out a little press release and have so far confirmed with KPTM Fox 42.  They are going to be coming out to our home this Sunday at 1:00pm for an interview with our family and will be running a story during their 9:00pm newscast.  How fun is that!!??!!  
I will share the names of other little ones from our area who will also be featured in the video (the one's I am aware of anyway) and will throw in a plug for the upcoming Buddy Walk and information about how October is Nat'l Down Syndrome Awareness month.  
can you tell I'm a little excited?  :-)
Thank you KPTM for sharing this news...we'll see if I hear back from any other of the TV stations I sent the release to.

this is the photo they selected...hehe

A boy and his dog

My husband is such a good sport.  The other day I was setting up our indoor "studio" (aka - move the kitchen table, open the windows and walla, you've got a natural light photo studio!) for a Senior photo session...with Miss Kirsten.
I asked Joe to simply stand in front the backdrop while I get my camera settings adjusted etc...he reluctantly agreed to play along.  Like I said before, what a good sport!  :-)
It was not my intention to actually save these pics, but Toby wanted to join in the "fun" as well, so they accidentally turned out kinda cute.  
(Joe - please don't kill me, bahaha)

I think I might title this series "A Man and his Best Friend" or "The Men of the Harnisch House" or "My Handsome Husband and his Canine Companion" or "Boy and his Dog".  whatever...
oh & thought I would throw in one of me real quick...hehe.
 Poor Toby doesn't find himself in many pics these days.  But he as much a member of our family as the next person.  We are so blessed to have such amazingly sweet doggie  :-)  He is so good with and just LOVES our girls to pieces (and visa-versa).


Yesterday, Joe and I celebrated our 9th Wedding Anniversary.  
I made this a few months ago and do not think I have shared it on the blog yet

He had some pretty flowers sent to my office at work...whata man...and then he treated me to a delightfully romantic dinner at "The Oasis".  It's a new place in town.
Don't be fooled.  This was not exactly an intimate, gourmet dining experience.  A meal in the fellowship Hall with 150+ of our closest friends is part of our Wednesday family church night festivities at Bethany.  :-)  The girls didn't want to miss out.

Sep 18, 2011

First day of Tap & Ballet

Big sister was so excited to finally get to wear those brand new ballet shoes, tap shoes, leotard, tutu & pink tights that have been sitting in the drop zone cubby and taunting her for the past month.  Dance class has begun so she gets to wear the "new/special" stuff  :-)  She has been wearing hand-me-down dance outfits around the house and practicing with Angelina Ballerina and Bella Bella Dancerella.  They've taught her some good moves, but now she's ready to learn from the pros!

She and cousin Anna are in the same class (go figure) and attend the same "school of dance" that my sisters and I attended when we were teeny-boppers.  
McKenzie refusing to pose by the studio's front door for that predictable "first day of dance class" shot...DON'T SMILE BACK THERE KENZIE!  tear.
at least cousin Anna was willing to entertain me with a smile.  That'll work!  As you can see McKenzie is still keeping a safe distance from the camera.
Her and Anna showing their matching ballet outfits off to each other for the first time  :-)
checking themselves out in the mirror.  ha!
They got to move up to the big studio.  oooh.  special!  Here they are.  All doing such a great job.  making noises with their tap shoes.
these pics did not turn out too bad considering I was shooting through a glass window & mini-blinds.  :)  yes, I was THAT mom...but in my defense, I was NOT the only one!  hehe
Little Miss Macy watches through the window.  Just dreaming of her day to dance...soon enough girl-friend, you'll get your chance!!  She's already working on her fancy moves.  Girl's got some rhythm  :-)  She can twirl, shake her bootie and shimmy her shoulder to the beat with the rest of em!  Give her an iPod qued up to some "Dynamite" and watch her go!!  video I'm sure is soon to come.  stay tuned.
fun with bubbles!

check out the trouble this little stinker-butt got herself into!  She made herself right at home in these wall cubbies.  Just her size.  HA!  Love it  :-)

Ooops, when I wasn't looking sister snagged somebody else's water bottle.  ooops.  sorry 'bout that!

I've gotta say it was extremely heart-warming to sit back and watch Kenzie having a genuinely good time.  She was in her element.  Was at ease and smiling the whole time!  She has had a sort of intense shyness about her lately.  Not wanting to go to school or even play with friends...Negotiations at home have been especially brutal...She has also been very grumpy, irritable and hard to please lately.  Not sure if this is just a 4-yr old phase, if she's getting sick (she is still trying to recover from a week's long illness since that first dance class  :-(  ).  Whatever it is, I hope she snaps out of this four year old funk SOON!  To make matters worse her excema/dermatitis has been acting up and this time it has targeted her face (nowhere else on her little body - just her beautiful face  :-(  ).  Her poor cheeks and chin are ALL red, blotchy and itchy.  Poor thing has been scratching the heck out of it, until the point that it starts to bleed.  I think I tell her to "stop scratching" about every 10's getting old and very frustrating.  My heart aches for her  :-(  We continue our cream and meds regimine...but we'll see what her docs tell us (yet again) this it seems to have taken on a new level of "severeness" as of late.  I just pray that soon her skin will calm down and just be comfortable for her.  No wonder she's been crabby, I would be too if I was literally "uncomfortable in my own skin".

She had a fun time at dance class again yesterday (minus the itching of her face every few minutes)...she finally felt "not-too sick to go anywhere", it has been a LONG week of fevers & coughing in the Harnisch house.   

but I think we are all better now...looking forward to a great week, full of health for the Harnisches :-)

Sep 16, 2011

Momma has a new gig

These last few weeks have been crazy busy (currently we are on day 5 of battling illness to all members of the Harnisch House - ugggh)...between pre-school, Macy's therapy sessions, Mom's Group (of which I am a Care Team Leader), Kenzie's ballet & tap, volleyball, bunco, cook club, DSSM coffee, Oasis, Sunday School, I'd say we are settling right back into our "back-to-school" routine nicely!
Oh and...

I HAVE A NEW JOB!  I suppose since I am about three weeks in & it has been made "facebook" official this morning, I should blog about it!  :-)
Just a little over a year ago I was blogging about saying goodbye to my career and accepting the new role of CFO at Harnisch, Inc. - making the decision to become a full-time stay-at-home mom was not easy to arrive at.
The girls and I have been keeping VERY busy this past year, rarely a day has gone by without some sort of activity in the calendar.  I would PRAISE those rare days we could just sit at home and be lazy (usually this was because they were under the weather - an added benefit to being sick, I like to think this is God's way of telling us to take it easy).  For this reason, I resisted calling myself "a stay-at-home" mom.  I am a "kickin' it with my girls" momma!
While I have LOVED and TREASURED this quality time with my precious littles, I have still not been able to shut my mind off.  I have continued to have this craving to DO something, try to feel as though I "accomplished" something, have something "tangible" to show for my day, needing to always "scratch my creative-itch".
Though it was not part of the plan, I did find myself, accidentally, starting up a couple little side businesses.  "Sherri Harnisch Picture Taker" & "Sherri Harnisch Video Maker".
ha!  ooops. 
I think I just might be failing at this "stay-at-home" mom biz.
I think God knew it too.  I strongly feel as though there was some sort of divine intervention at work here. A few weeks ago, Martha called me out of the blue.  She is the Director of Communications at Bethany Lutheran Church.  The church we have been members at for eight+ years. 
She had an interesting proposition for me.  She thought of me for a new position they were creating...I have been volunteering for a lot of stuff lately, have attended many meetings and have voiced many opinions/ideas, etc...Apparently she found me to be "creative", "organized" and "enthusiastic".  These are the words she used.  They stuck with me...I thought that was very sweet of her to say.  So if nothing else came of this job proposition, I was at least flattered by those remarks.
She described a position at which I could utilize my creative talents, while working 10-15 hours per week.  The hours would be "somewhat" flexible.  I would have my own office at the church, while having the ability to work from home much of the time as well.  Oh & did I mention that Bethany is just a couple blocks from my house?!  Literally, in my neighborhood!
SO...hmmm.  let me think about this?  1) flexible hours 2) have an office 3) get paid to be creative 4) have a reason to get a little break from my girls (and them from me).
Sound a little too good to be true??  Sign me up! 
While I promised myself that I would not return to the workforce until my heart was 100% ready.  I feel this is only fair to myself, my family as well as my future employer.  While my heart may not 100% ready at this time, I do feel that this is a 100% wonderful compromise.  I thought long and prayed hard regarding this.  Is this the right thing to do?  At this time?...after much deliberation, I came to the conclusion that it was.  I am still able to put my family's needs FIRST, but will be able to get out of the house and regain a bit of sanity while "at the office"
I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason.  God has a purpose and plan for everything and everyone.  I know in my heart-of-hearts that this is what he feels is best for me at this time.  I feel blessed and fortunate to have the opportunity!  I hope to do right by him as I serve my community well in this regard.

My job is in the area of Worship Arts.  I attend the weekly worship leader & staff meetings (which I actually find to be quite enjoyable and fulfilling) to get the "rundown/inside track" of upcoming services & events.  Once this information is obtained and gathered, I can proceed with producing slides and media for Bethany's Contemporary worship services.  I have access to thousands of beautiful images and photographs to help illustrate the music and messages.  My work is then displayed on the big screens every Wednesday & Sunday  :-)  I am also the leader of the Visual Tech team who is responsible for manning the media booth during services.  We have a wonderful and loyal team of volunteers already in place.  Looking forward to getting to know and work along side these individuals more.  I also get to do a bit of video editing...
I enjoy my gig at making the worship services easier for the congregation to relate to, follow/sing along, all the while making it an all-together AESTHETICALLY PLEASING experience.  :-)
I also love getting a sneak peek at the pastor's sermons each week.  I am able to read through their notes/outlines (so that I can illustrate their messages appropriately).  I read through them several times, they are always wonderful.  Then, listening to them deliver the message during service allows me to simply connect further and deeper with their words on a much more spiritual and fulfilling way.  Makes it sync in more...This is definitely my most favorite part! 

That's it in a nutshell.

I am proud and honored to be working for a great company with a good solid mission & purpose.  Bethany is a faith community with 2000+ members and is part of the ELCA.  
The other people who work at Bethany are really nice, good people, and super fun!  I experienced my first bethany Food day a few days ago.  Which apparently happens once a month.  This is a pot-luck style luncheon and was AWESOME.  Made me feel right at home.  Can you tell I love food?  :-)

The girls get to, once again, go to Joy's daycare a couple times a week.  This is where they went prior to me staying-home.  They LOVE it there and Joy is so sweet, sincere and genuinely loves all the kiddos she watches.   We are blessed to have her in our lives!!  
Also - since both girls just happen to attend pre-school there, and they are both in session Wednesday mornings...since I am there dropping them off & picking them up anyways, I might as well stick around and do some work in my office while I'm at it.  TOO perfect!

Sep 9, 2011

First Day of Pre-school

Wednesday was the girls' first official day of pre-school at Bethany.  McKenzie goes Mon, Wed & Fri.  And Little Miss Macy just goes on Wednesdays.
here are the "traditional" sitting on the front porch with our backpacks before school shots  :-)
As you can see, Macy is super-duper stoked!
She's still trying to figure out what all the fuss is about.
ha!  love this one...nice face Macy :-)
we had an extra 17.3 seconds left to spare, so I took a couple pics near the prayer path (which is on the way to the school)
Kenzie didn't want to get out of the car, but Macy didn't seem to mind.

is this the face of an angel or what??  :-)
At the school - in the prayer garden...
I love this...can you see big sis pouting in the background.  I do believe she was saying "come on Mom, school is this way, we go through those doors, over there.  Mrs. Shipe is WAITING for us!!"
Macy making a friend over by the bell tower.
Life's simple pleasures.
hold your sister's hand while crossing the street.  thata-girl!
what a GOOD big sister  :-)
Kenzie found her cubby...
She was excited to introduce Mrs. Shipe to her baby sister Macy,  ha.
Mrs. Shipe & McKenzie (that's Macy's head in the foreground)
McKenzie LOVES her teacher  :-)
Macy walkin' into her classroom.  She is greeted by a familiar face  :-)
She takes her seat and immediately starts playing with the play-do - YES, I am THAT mom standing in the hallway snapping one last picture as I was back away from the classroom.
 Both girls had a wonderful first day of school, I knew they would  :-)

Here McKenzie is doing facetime (skype) with her daddy...she was anxious to tell him all about her fun time at school!

Sep 7, 2011

An Apple Pickin' good time!

Our friend Sarah invited us to her grandparents home near Raymond, NE to pick some apples on Sunday.  Of course, we took her up on the offer, sounded like fun to me.
Several of us families "caravaned" out there.  Our jaws dropped upon arriving at their beautiful property which spans across a couple hundred acres.  The winding lane, gorgeous home, big red barns, pool, llamas, grape vineyards, apple trees, peach trees and various other fruit trees were very inviting.  Not to mention, her grandparents, Jim & Neeney were super sweet and very hospitable.  To top it off, the weather was beyond perfect!!
trying to pose for a quick family pic
you think both girls are capable of looking at the camera at the same time?  not so much.  hehe
Thanks Sarah :)
We rode the hayrack back into the Orchard.  The girls LOVED it.  They (and all the kids) had a lot fun!
Kenzie in search of the perfect apple.
Macy didn't pick too many apples, but she did improve her grass-walking skills.  woohoo!
She found a good one :-)
"I'm gonna keep it and put in my pocket"
The girl LOVES apples.  She held one tight to it and ate that same apple for nearly an hour.  ha!  good to know.
I like how Macy is watching her big sis very closely here.
check out all those kiddos picking apples in the orchard.  awesome!
Macy watches her friend Mia pick some good apples
In case you can't tell...she thinks Mia is pretty special  :-)
Apparently it's not all fun and games...ask the girl to look at the camera for one second and you get this response.  "I'm busy mom, can't I  just check out the tractor without you buggin' me a pic.
NOT happy.  oh my!

in front of some grape vines.
got it!
Sadly, The battery died on my camera so I was unable to take photos of the rest of our hayrack ride throughout their gorgeous property...I was bummed as the views were stunning!  Plus Sarah's grandma had arranged for a wonderful picnic with all the fixins.  It was delightful.  The best part of the picnic was watching Macy sit ALL by herself at the picnic table and eat her food (and then some) all gone.  What a big girl she is becoming (correction - has become!)

I stole these pics below from Sarah, they are great so I just wanted to share them too  :-)
 My neighbor Cheryl picking Chase up so he can reach the apples.
Cheryl - this is a BEAUTIFUL photo of you  :-)
everyone piling on the hayrack.
Sarah's daughter has her arms full!
Sarah snuck a sweet photo of Macy and I playing catch with an apple  :-)
What a fun time had by all...I am now SOOO ready for Fall!

feel free to check out this website for more information regarding Sarah's families wine business.