It is my hope that through this blog I can share experiences and challenges from day to day life.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Year End Blessings.

For us as for many around the country, 2011 has been a challenging year; be it financial, health, job or all the above.  In spite of these challenges, we choose to focus on the good things that we have received and experienced.  This Christmas as the children daily told us all they wanted we shared with them the real meaning for this season.  And although they may not have gotten everything they wanted, they were not lacking in the gift department; thanks to Aunts, Uncles and Grandparents.  And to our mild surprise and joy they were not all that disappointed either.

We enjoyed great time with family, followed by a relaxing somewhat quiet Christmas morning and a blessing of an new addition with our niece now 6 weeks old.  Our kids were quite taken with her, especially our son who wanted nothing more than to sit and hold her.  Both kids mentioned that they would like another sibling, which is really up to the Lord.  :)  And Grandma was blessed with all family portraits.

We are thankful that my husband was able to return back to work, for now half-time and working toward full time again.  But he is back in the swing of things and re acquainting himself with his surrounding as work.

The kids have one more week of vacation before school starts again; giving me one week to prepare for all the new things we will learn this next quarter.  They will be learning about birds to finish off our Attentiveness Unit.  Then we begin our unit on Obedience; where we will study about Castles, Kings, Knights and more.  Looks to be exciting, at least I am interested.

So here is to the New Year and all it will hold for us.  Blessing to you as you too begin this New Year, may you also choose to see the good and not give great thought to the not so good.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Christmas Blessings

Luke 2:14 “Glory to God in the Highest; and on Earth Peace, good will toward men.”

This was our memory verse for the week.  As the Holidays and Christmas season approach our School session comes to a close as we break to take time for the real meaning of Christmas—the Birth of our Savior, Christ the Lord.

This month after finishing our unit on North American Indians, turned to Christmas.  We looked at Zachariah and Elizabeth, Mary and Joseph, Baby Jesus and all the happened during those long months approaching Christ’s birth.  They wrote letters to Santa and were surprised to get both a letter in the mail and an email from Santa.  Amazing sometimes what technology can foster. 

The kids had fun today as we stayed in our PJ’s and had story time Friday.  Hearing once again the story on Jesus; then closing with the story of the candy cane.  Josh liked how the both the glory of his birth and his death on the cross are represented in the candy cane.  He also likes that “when you turn cane upside down it makes a “J” for Joshua—I mean Jesus.” I read to them a new story to me and highly recommend it as it gives a different view of Christ’s birth.  We typically focus on Christ (rightly so) and Mary.  And yet Joseph had a big part in Christ’s birth and upbringing.  The book is called “FATHER and SON—A nativity story”, by Geraldine McCaughrean.   

We rejoice that Josh is doing better with his walking as he is finally able to get around better.  This week he started walking without his walker.  He is still wobbly but getting stronger.  He will be getting new braces to give him more support and in the next few months he should be up and around walking taller and smoother.  Praise the Lord!

Jody started back to work—another answer to prayer.  However after a week he was really hurting again and the Doctor decided that it was too much too fast so has placed him back to half days for the next 6 weeks to slowly ease his knee back into normal workloads.

We look forward to the New Year and like many are praying for positive changes and better times.  May God bless you and your Families as you come together and enjoy each other’s company.  Merry Christmas!!!! 

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Thanks Giving What else can I call this?

With great praise we are starting to see Josh move around and be himself as we have not seen for the past 5 weeks.  HE is over his slump PTL and on the road to healthy rumbustious recovery.  Sometimes I wonder  where he gets his shenanigans?

We took some time to back off on the core curriculum of school to give Josh a break and he was just overwhelmed by everything and healing.  But we have been learning about the Plains and Woodland American Indians and he really is having fun.  We will spend the next few weeks learning about the North and South west Indians.  I am often amazed what they comprehend and pay attention to.

We drove to his Doctor yesterday and on the way he told me that we have to start learning more about Indians because we have not had school for a while.  We had last week of for Thanksgiving...He is enjoying Homeschooling so much he is asking for more. WOW!

We are looking forward to what the coming weeks will bring and praying he will be walking hands free (of walker or assistance) by Christmas!!!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Frontiersmen and then some

This week we will finish out unit on Frontiersmen which introduced us to Daniel Boone, Davey Crockett, Lewis & Clark and John Sutter to name a few.  We also learned about trapping, tracking and fur trading and met a few Indians who helped the Frontiersmen on their journey.  Lastly we learned about animals that our frontiersmen may have encountered like bears, wolves, snakes and coyotes; and how different animals prey or protect themselves.  Next week we will begin our unit on North American Indians; coming at just the right time for thanksgiving and then finishing before Christmas.  It looks to be very exciting.

We too have been on a kind of frontier with our son.  After 6 weeks of being in casts to help loosen his muscles we thought getting out of the casts and being able to walk would be a exhilarating time for him.  Instead we have seen our son like never before.  HE seems to have lost his vigor.  With understanding he has been fearful to try walking or putting any weight on his legs.  We have encouraged him to just try, but instead he slouches in his wheel chair and refuses to try anything.  We saw one of his Dr's and she looked him in the eye and told him that his legs were strong and could hold his weight and the he CAN walk.  This talk helped for about 2 days and then we lost him again.

Funny to think that when the casts came off the Dr told us that we had to make sure he did not run, jump or climb.  I thought I would be always on him to take it easy.  NEVER thought I would be fighting listlessness.  I feel for the parents that daily love on children that CAN NOT walk or have mental or physical conditions that prevent them from moving.  I never thought that being a cheerleader could be so exhausting. Sadly there are days that just so tax me I can barely move.  Our son constantly complains he is tired and yet he does nothing strenuous which makes him tired--ironic.

"press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus."  Philippians 3:14

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Moving on...

It has been so busy since my last blog.  Keeping up with 2 immobile boys and having to attend to Josh as though we had a baby once again can become wearisome.  But alas God gives us the strength we need in spite of ourselves.  For this I can not express enough thanks; I just keep swinging...

Today October 17, 2011 marks a big day on many accounts.  First we have finished our unit on our senses; ending with a trip to the Blind Institute.  The children had fun meeting a blind woman and taken on a tour of the facility, meeting several blind friends and watching them making baskets.  They will try making baskets soon in our next unit.

Today also marks great excitement for Josh as he got his casts off after 6 weeks of not being able to be mobile.  He is excited to be able to take a REAL BATH.  Six weeks is a long time to only get a sponge bath and his legs are VERY ITCHY—or so he says.  He will be using his walker for a few weeks as he regains strength in his legs. 

Please continue to pray as there is some set-back as he adjusts to new weakness of limbs, He is fearful to put any weight on or to bend his legs.  He is very hesitant, but we encourage him as much as we can.  I have taken to use some extra tough love and push him when he would rather give up—not his usual stance.  Don’t get me wrong I understand the pain, I just know that he needs to move or he will not be able to walk and all the we have done that last 6 weeks will have been for not.

Finally, today marks the beginning of a new unit as we embark on the great Frontier; and learn about many great explorers and those that helped them map out the United States we know now.  Then we will discuss how using their senses and being attentive helped them to survive.  Lewis & Clark, Sacagawea, Pocahontas & John Smith, Jedediah Smith and Kit Carson to name a few; who knows maybe they will dress as Davey Crockett or Sacagawea  for Harvest night….

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


It seems amazing how some things can seem so short and yet so long all at the same time.  Today marks the 18th day of school for us.  It has gone by so fast and yet seems like it has been a long time.  It also marks the end of our current unit on ears and listening in our Attentiveness Study.

Today we reviewed all that we have covered.  It is interesting what sticks to memory and what seems vague, especially when they knew it a few weeks ago; greater evidence that if yo do not use it (or talk about it), you loose it.  Oh but the fun they had while discussing everything.  During the last few weeks they have covered Science, history, the Arts and memorized several verses from the Bible.

Here is a picture of our Historical and Present Day wall.  During the course of our studies they meet many characters and put them on the timeline of history, showing them where in history these people lived and how it relates to them.  Yes even they are now on the timeline.

So far we have discussed creation, Adam & Eve, Cain & Able, Samuel, King David, Christ, Mary & Martha, Bach, Handel, Mozart, Alexander Graham Bell, William Booth, Helen Keller and several others.

They have learned about their ears and how they work; they love that there is a drum and hammer inside and can tell why.  We have discussed sound and music, learning about an Orchestra and and the main parts; Brass, Woodwinds, Strings and Percussion.  We have done experiments to see sound waves and making their own phones with string and cups--fun day.  They have read MANY stories and seen movies that talk about parts of hearing and sound.

Their real fun was visiting a music school where they got to play the flute, soprano sax, piano and the violin.  They learned some Latin and how a conductor and musicians know when to play soft or loud and their favorite--fortissimo. This was a very exciting day for them and they especially like trying the violin.  The instructor was impressed at how well the played each instrument especially as it was their first time.  And their enthusiasm was amazing.

We were blessed a few days later when friends gifted the kids with a violin of their own.  To me this was an amazing gift.  Both kids are eager to learn and want to play.  So now I am looking for beginner violin and piano books to teach them and someday will have to find them a teacher.  Good thing we know a good music school close by.  :)   

What an amazing first few weeks.  There is much that I have not mentioned; but many rousing discussions that took place at various times throughout their day.  Next we will discuss our eyes and how they contribute to being attentive....

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Josh's Big Surgery part 3 of 3

September 11, 2011
Sunday at 10:30pm
It has been challenging to get Josh situated and keep him comfortable.  He is often bored or just not comfortable.  Although he started sleeping in his room, last night he moved to the living room to sleep in daddy’s chair.  He goes from his wheelchair to the big chair to his bed; depending on his mood. 

In all he is doing well very in handling the pain and discomfort.

September 15, 2011

Josh continues to improve; a blessing to be sure.  He has done much better now that he is home.  He has had a few moments when he starts crying because he is DONE with the whole thing.  HE wants the casts off or they are uncomfortable.  We talk thru it with him and pray with him and he moves on.  He really missed his sister not being around.  He even said, “I miss Shelby.  It is boring when she is not here.”  And she told grandma on Monday that she thought it was time to go home.  So Tuesday evening she came home.  We were all glad to see her again.  Of course now, they fight and argue all the time—back to normal I guess.

Jody is doing much better with his knee.  He started Physical Therapy this week and it has taken a toll on him.  He does well in PT and feels good after, however when evening comes he is wiped and out for the next day.  We are thankful for his sleep meds to help him get some sleep.  He is hopeful that he can go back to work next month.

With all the Doctors’ visits, Therapy sessions and trying to stay caught up in house work, not to mention the multiple naps Josh takes due to pain meds, school had a few more off days than expected.  More reasons we are glad we opted for Homeschool.  Can’t imagine trying to work “regular” school schedule into the busy, crazy, upside down days we have had. 

People often ask how I am doing and truthfully it depends on the day.  For the most part I am fine.  Tired; sometimes exhausted; found some back muscles I have not used in a while—comes from lifting an extra 50 lbs. several times a day.  Sleep comes but more like a new mother, as I must keep an ear trained on Josh in the event he needs help at night.  As well, Shelby has been fighting the sleep thing the past few nights and therefore I end up going to bed later than I would like.  Again many more reasons to be thankful for homeschool.  The learning will happen, but more slowly this month.

September 18, 2011
Great day today.  We were all in church today.  It has been awhile.  Blessings, still come and healing is close behind.  We give thanks for all the prayers that have come our way and look forward to what will come out of all the challenges of the past few months.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Josh's Big Surgery 2011 -- Part 2 of 3

September 8, 2011
Thursday at 5:20am
We both slept well tonight. Josh even slept thru his cares at 4:30am. He was sleeping so well he was able to skip his meds at 4am thus waiting till 6am to get a larger dose of meds which will be good when he start Physical Therapy today. Moving him is painful and the extra boost will be good.
Thursday at 6:24am
Today is movement day. We changed is clothes and later will change his bed. We also turned him kind of on his left side. It’s a little uncomfortable for him as he has been totally on his back all day yesterday. But he needs to move and be on his sides. He wants to go on his tummy which may be more than he can handle right now. PT will help us figure all this out, but it is defiantly a 2 person task.  It wipes him out but he is now sleeping again. Of course Codeine and Valium can do that.
Thursday at 6:55am
Song running thru my head:
This is the day that the Lord has made; I will rejoice and be glad in it.
This is the day that the Lord has made; I will rejoice and be glad in it.
Rejoice! In the Lord.  Rejoice! In the Lord. 
Thursday at 10:22am
Good day today. PT came in to show us how to get him to and from bed to wheelchair. He did a real good breathing and with pain was able to assist moving himself to and from bed. Then he wheeled himself in wheelchair down the hall a bit. Watch out Josh is driving!
Thursday at 1:30pm
Josh fed himself lunch and ate most of it. He is excited to go down to the playroom and find some games. His IV has been removed and will stay that way as long as he is drinking plenty of fluids. He has thoroughly impressed the PT team at how well he did without complaint or crying.
Thursday at 3:10pm
Josh went down to playroom. But there were so many kids and the video games were not working so he chose a game to bring back to his room. He drove himself ALL the way down and part way back before getting tired. I suggested he sleep a bit and then play game. He said he was not tired. We got him into bed and no sooner put the pillow behind him and he was out. 2 1/2 hrs later and he is still asleep.
Thursday at 5:45pm
He just woke up and playing his video game. 
Thursday at 6pm
 SOOOO engrossed in his game he will not talk to me. I have to block the TV to tell him dinner is here. He does not want it.
Thursday at 6:30pm
We have been (As usual) blessed by the staff here at LLUMC. The only down fall I see is that the patients get better food than what is served in the cafeteria. Why..you ask? Because the patients actually get MEAT. In the cafeteria they only offer Veggie everything. A veggie dog is NOT a hot dog by any means. And what is sadder is the short order cook does not even know what the veggie burger tastes like. Reason: 7th Day Adventist whom evidently don't eat meat.
Thursday at 7:45pm
He is doing great! He played for 2 hrs. Nibbled part of a cheese sandwich then feel asleep again.

September 9, 2011
Friday at 5:43am
Josh slept thru the night even able to wake for his 1am meds. At 4:30am his fever spiked to 102. It has been sitting at 99.5* & 100.5*. Please pray that his body will fight whatever it is fighting and get the temp down. This would be the only thing to keep him longer--and he wants to go home.
Friday at 6:45am
My devotion this morning:  
Isaiah 2:15-17 "He will break down every high tower and every fortified wall.”
Friday at 7:15am
Josh's temp is back at 99*. And today he actually wiggled his toes on both feet. Something he had not been able to do. One of the Dr's assistants came in. He said because of the surgery he will run a bit of a fever, and if meds are keeping it in check then he can go home. As well, he said 99* is not a big concern, if it were to stay at 102* it might be different. We will see what the Dr says when he comes in.
Friday at 9:30am
One question they always ask Josh is to wiggle his toes. He has not usually been able to do this before surgery and so the last 2 days he said no. This morning he wiggled his toes on both feet. Slight but wiggle none the less. 

Josh had some breakfast and wanted a bath.  He was in a lot of pain and so they gave him some Morphine.  We gave him a sponge bathe which he really liked.  Get the yuckies off him.  But then he was so tired he wanted to rest.
 Friday at 10:40am
Dr came in and says Josh can go home if he wants.  At first Josh said he wanted to go home, but then before he fell asleep he told me he changed his mind and he wants to stay.  I told him to sleep and we would discuss it after he woke up.  Experience has taught me that if he says he wants to stay it is better to stay.  So we will see.

Dr is not concerned with the spikes in temperature as it is part of his bodies healing process. As we are able to control the temp with Tylenol and Ice packs so there is no problem.
Friday at 12:00pm
Josh is sleeping.  We got his med schedule off track and he had to have some morphine due to some extreme pain.  So He is sleeping now.
Friday at 3:00pm
Josh woke and we discussed going home or staying another night.  He said he hurt and wanted to stay another night.  So I told him; “Josh, you will be hurting for a while.  So would you rather hurt here in the hospital or hurt at home with daddy?”  He said he would rather hurt at home.  So we will make plans to go home.
 Friday at 4:30pm
We are in the car and on our way home.  It is a journey as we have to navigate his seating to make sure he is comfortable.  We had to stop once for him to go to the bathroom and then again to readjust his seat.
Friday at 6:30pm
                HOME AT LAST!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Josh's Big Surgery 2011 -- Part 1

Josh’s Big Surgery

September 5, 2011
Monday at 4:40pm
Laundry washed, folded AND put away (a feat not easily accomplished the last few weeks.) Floors swept and mopped. Suitcase mostly packed and dinner in the oven. I think I am ready for the week at Loma Linda....We will be staying up late tonight so Josh can eat till mid-night and hopefully sleep in some. Then all the pop-cycles he wants for Breakfast in the AM and off the LL @ 11am.

I will be staying in a chair next to his bed. He has never been away from home except for grandma's. He has been really anxious all the more reason to be near him. I may actually get some reading done.

September 6, 2011
Tuesday at 9:20am
Well, we are just about ready. Josh has been playing video games this AM.  He settled for water for breakfast.   He is doing well. Thank you all for your prayers. I will update as I can today.

Hard to tell from the picture on the left, but this is Josh being his normal, goofy self.  As he was waiting in Pre-OP he asked the nurse for some gloves and a mask.  They then also brought a hat.  he loves to dress up in the stuff while waiting. 

September 7, 2011
Wednesday at 12:37am
Well, surgery was scheduled for 3pm. Dr. was running a bit late. Then trauma patient came in and we got bumped. Our Dr. had to help with the trauma as it was a child in severe condition. Need-less-to-say, Josh did not go into surgery until 11:30pm. 24 hrs no food and 12 hrs no liquid. He was a trooper, impressed the nurses by not complaining.

Wednesday at 1:26am
It was a VERY long day but I am well. I know and have seen many parents get heated. But there was nothing anyone could do and causing a fuss isn't me and would do no one good. So you (I) breathe a lot and look at the clock and pray things move on with positive info soon.... Dr just said they are closing up and all was fine.
Wednesday at 2:14am
Waiting to be called back to see Josh. He is in recovery asleep. Sooo tired, I want to see him and I want to sleep.
‎ Wednesday at 7:46am
3 hrs sleep---maybe. Josh is doing ok. Pain when he moves. He had some morphine about an hour ago.  He is eating ice chips and drinking water.  REALLY wants to eat but that is not for another hour.
Wednesday at 8:56am
So Josh has casts on both legs from the thigh
down to his feet. Then there is bar at his
ankles that spread his feet apart about a
foot and 1/2 or so. This is so that the
lengthening they did on his abductors (the
 inner thigh muscle) heals giving him more
stretch and range of motion.

 Josh's ankles are 16" apart. To give perspective—
His legs are 17" from groin to ankle. So figure out
how long you legs are and spread them out that far...

Wednesday at 5:24pm
They have removed his catheter. He has been sleeping off and on today, slowly getting his pain under control. Physical Therapy will come tomorrow to help determine what he needs at home. He may go home tomorrow but I am thinking more like Friday, which I would prefer for the pain.
Wednesday at 5:27pm  
Our biggest concern after pain management is getting situated with respite to be able to assist with him at home a few times a week.
Wednesday at 10:38pm
He seems to be doing better, more talkative tonight. His color back and he wants to play video games.

Will continue Tomorrow...

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Surgery preparations

Well, our young man will have surgery this Tuesday.  It is a bit overwhelming to say the least.  Each of us is hit in different ways depending on the moment and what we are thinking.

For Josh, as he is older now (7) he hears more and understands more.  So when we are talking to Doctors and nurses even though we think he is not listening he is tuned into the conversation.  He has had moments where he completely melts when trying to understand what is to come.  He has undergone so many procedures that surgery in and of itself is no big deal to him.  He even goes to the OR with the nurses laughing and making jokes. However this time around, he is more anxious than in the past.  He has been a lot more clingy in constant need of reassurance.  So there has been more kisses and hugs and "I love you's."  He became really upset at the thought of not being able to eat breakfast the day of surgery.  We have softened the reality by telling him he can stay up till midnight on Monday and eat and party the whole time.  He is excited about staying late.

For my husband, it is very hard.  Being that he just had knee surgery, he is not able to go on surgery day to be with our son.  It would be too physically demanding, not to mention emotional.  He has been to all Josh's procedures; so not going to this one which is a more serious procedure is very hard to process.  I think he is experiencing a very real picture of wanting to do so much and not being able to control or do anything about any of it.  On top of which he is dealing with his own personal healing process which is draining on him to say the least, another area in which he feels helpless and not in control.  It has been daunting at the very least.

For our daughter (4) she does not  really know what is going on.  She know Josh will have surgery and will have casts on his legs, but beyond that she knows nothing else.  Yet she feels things and knows something is happening and the tension or uneasiness has made her a little more prone to tantrums and acting out.

For me, it is a day to day letting go and moving forward.  I try hard to make sure all care cared for and comfortable as can be.  As long as I am busy or doing... I am fine.  When I stop and start thinking is when everything becomes very overwhelming and the emotions pour.

In it all we all have found great relief in knowing that God IS in control.  HE does take us through each day.  Josh was listening to a Christian song and came to me to say it made him sad because it reminds him that he knows Jesus.  So I told him to think of how he would feel going into surgery without Jesus.  He said he would be REALLY scared, and is thankful that he does know Jesus.  My husband and I are very grateful that both our kids know Jesus and know that HE is the source to go to for comfort and rest.

So it is hard right now in many ways,  ways even I have not mentioned.  But God is faithful in the midst of it all.  Josh has a new memory verse which he really likes and has been reading it every night, something we can all find strength in:  "Have I not commanded you be strong and courageous? For the Lord you God is with you wherever you may go."  Joshua 1:9   A good promise for all times.

Friday, August 26, 2011

In Full SWING.....

Well  our school year is in full swing, albeit interrupted with Doctor visits here and there.  None the less we have started.  There are of course many bumps on this journey as Josh is getting used to the idea of Home School.  He has still not bought into it, though I will say he is giving a good try at it.  Shelby is into it although today a bit on the difficult side--showing her colors so to speak.

In spite of their resistance, they are learning even if they are not aware of it.  This week we have been learning about our ears and how they work.  They can show you where the auricle is and tell you about the ear drum and what the cochlea is.  Do you know??  Surprisingly enough, our 4 & 7 year old were actually paying attention and could tell their father all about these things.  I taught them an old children's song about our ears, eyes and mouth and Shelby not only remembered it but sang it in key and rhythm.

Only 3 days into our school year and I think it has gone better than I anticipated.  They are excited about a field trip to the music store to learn about different instruments.  Josh hopes he will be able to play something. We shall see...

In spite of our rocky start, they have even managed to come along with me even with their dad on bed rest from knee surgery.  It is kinda nice; they learn something and get excited to go tell him ALL about it.  I pray they fully embrace this new journey and get excited about what they are learning as much as I have gotten excited about what I will teach.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Counting down the days

As the beginning of the school year approaches, it seems there is significantly more to do to get ready.  I am learning to focus and trying to keep an open mind and remember that EVERYTHING does not have to happen. I have planned well and am ready.  But I must remember that just because I have scheduled something, does not mean IT has to be done..today or this week or at all.

In addition to school starting there have been some added bumps in the road but I am viewing them as bumps and not detours or set backs... just bumps.  My husband was injured at work last month, and thankfully he will have surgery this week (the "first" day of school).  However, as I am the teacher, school can start a day or two late.  Not like the kids will mind, and since the "principal" is my husband I don't think he will be upset either.  :)

Although our son is not yet sold on the home-school idea, both kids are excited about school starting.  We keep telling our son that once he sees ALL the fun things we will do that "regular" school does not do, he will like it.  Great Expectations anyone??

Then there is the surgery our son will undergo in 2 weeks; in which he will be "out of school" for a week.  So needless-to-say, the next 1 1/2 of school will be getting used to the idea of school and getting some habits put in place in preparation for SCHOOL to start.

I have high hopes for this year; but mostly I am excited at the prospect of all the great things we will learn and enjoy together in a way that will leave cherished memories for all.  Here's to learning:  it is only dull when you stop.

Monday, August 8, 2011

New Room Design


So in preparation for school starting and giving our son a little freedom or the feeling of being more grown-up,  we have been rearranging the living room and the "computer room" so as to make the "computer room" into our son's room. Due to space (and maybe a little selfishness on our part) Our son and daughter have shared a room for the last 4 years.  Neither have complained or said anything.  However, our son has been wanting some alone time and we feel it is time for him to have his own space.  Our daughter on the other hand is not so happy with the idea, but she will get used to it.

In any case, I have managed today to not only wear myself out but also my husband as we have moved furniture, some pieces several times in order to find something that look good and felt comfortable.  My husband has decided that it is not safe to allow me next to a tape measure as I tend to measure everything as I am plotting where to put things.  Not that he minds the measuring, he was just surprised that a "little" moving grew to much moving in the process.  (Tee hee...)

We have found that we are indeed "creatures of habit" as we much prefer things the way they were.  Not to mention everything had a nice little spot and now there is "stuff" everywhere as we try to find new homes for everything.  As well, our daughter came to us after we were done and informed us that "we have to put everything back where it goes."

Tomorrow bodes a bit more rearranging as we get their rooms in order.  So here is to a good nights rest and hopes of waking with strong arms and no aches or pains.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Oh the places you"ll go

Life has so many ups and downs mixed in with many turn-a-rounds.  I have been preparing for some lessons and suddenly thought of so many fun things I can do with the kids and learn at the same time.  I started thinking, "Oh the fun we will have and remembered this poem by Dr. Seuss.  So I share it with you.

Oh! The Places You’ll Go!
by the incomparable Dr. Seuss
Today is your day.
You’re off to Great Places!
You’re off and away!

You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself any direction you choose.
You’re on your own. And you know what you know. 
And YOU are the guy who’ll decide where to go.

You’ll look up and down streets. Look’em over with
care. About some you will say, “I don’t choose to go
there.” With your head full of brains and your shoes
full of feet, you’re too smart to go down a
not-so-good street. 

And you may not find any you’ll want to go down. 
In that case, of course, you’ll head straight out of 
town.  It’s opener there in the wide open air.

Out there things can happen and frequently do to 
people as brainy and footsy as you.

And when things start to happen, don’t worry. 
Don’t stew. Just go right along. You’ll start 
happening too.

Oh! The Places You’ll Go!
You’ll be on your way up!
You’ll be seeing great sights!
You’ll join the high fliers who soar to high heights.

You won’t lag behind, because you’ll have the 
speed. You’ll pass the whole gang and you’ll soon 
take the lead. Wherever you fly, you’ll be best of 
the best. Wherever you go, you will top all the rest.
Except when you don’t. Because, sometimes, 
you won’t.

I’m sorry to say so but, sadly, it’s true that Bang-ups
and Hang-ups can happen to you.

You can get all hung up in a prickle-ly perch. 
And your gang will fly on. You’ll be left in a Lurch.
You’ll come down from the Lurch with an unpleasant
bump. And the chances are, then, that you’ll be in a 

And when you’re in a Slump, you’re not in for much
fun. Un-slumping yourself is not easily done.

You will come to a place where the streets are not
marked. Some windows are lighted. But mostly 
they’re darked. A place you could sprain both your
elbow and chin! Do you dare to stay out? Do you
dare to go in? How much can you lose? How much
can you win?

And if you go in, should you turn left or right…
or right-and-three-quarters? Or, maybe, not quite?
Or go around back and sneak in from behind? 
Simple it’s not, I’m afraid you will find, for a 
mind-maker-upper to make up his mind.

You can get so confused that you’ll start in to race 
down long wiggled roads at a break-necking pace 
and grind on for miles across weirdish wild space,
headed, I fear, toward a most useless place.

The Waiting Place…for people just waiting.

Waiting for a train to go or a bus to come, or a plane
to go or the mail to come, or the rain to go or the 
phone to ring, or the snow to snow or waiting 
around for a Yes or No or waiting for their hair to
grow. Everyone is just waiting.

Waiting for the fish to bite or waiting for wind to fly 
a kite or waiting around for Friday night or waiting, 
perhaps, for their Uncle Jake or a pot to boil, or a 
Better Break or a string of pearls, or a pair of pants 
or a wig with curls, or Another Chance. 
Everyone is just waiting.

No! That’s not for you!
Somehow you’ll escape all that waiting and staying. 
You’ll find the bright places where Boom Bands are
playing. With banner flip-flapping, once more you’ll 
ride high! Ready for anything under the sky. Ready
because you’re that kind of a guy!

Oh, the places you’ll go! There is fun to be done! 
There are points to be scored. There are games to
be won. And the magical things you can do with 
that ball will make you the winning-est winner of all.
Fame! You’ll be famous as famous can be, with the 
whole wide world watching you win on TV.

Except when they don’t. Because, sometimes, 
they won’t.

I’m afraid that some times you’ll play lonely games 
too.Games you can’t win ‘cause you’ll play against 

All Alone!
Whether you like it or not, Alone will be something 
you’ll be quite a lot.

And when you’re alone, there’s a very good chance 
you’ll meet things that scare you right out of your 
pants. There are some, down the road between 
hither and yon, that can scare you so much you 
won’t want to go on.

But on you will go though the weather be foul. On 
you will go though your enemies prowl. On you 
will go though the Hakken-Kraks howl. Onward up 
many a frightening creek, though your arms may 
get sore and your sneakers may leak. On and on
you will hike. And I know you’ll hike far and face
up to your problems whatever they are.

You’ll get mixed up, of course, as you already know. 
You’ll get mixed up with many strange birds as you 
go.  So be sure when you step. Step with care and 
great tact and remember that Life’s a Great 
Balancing Act.  Just never forget to be dexterous 
and deft. And never mix up your right foot with 
your left.

And will you succeed?
Yes! You will, indeed!
(98 and ¾ percent guaranteed.)

Kid, you’ll move mountains!
So…be your name Buxbaum or Bixby or Bray or
Mordecai Ale Van Allen O’Shea, you’re off to 
Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting.
So…get on your way!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Waves of emotion

With struggles our son experienced this past year in school and upcoming challenges he will face with higher grade level and surgery, we have decided to home-school our children this coming school year.  Initially, my thoughts leaned on if I could really do it.  Academically I know I can; I am a teacher after all.  Emotionally and morally I knew it was the best decision.  None-the-less, fear has a way of creeping in.

However, I choose NOT to live in fear and therefore, determined to find curriculum that would work well for both children while maintaining my sanity.  SUCCESS!  I found much and narrowed it down and found what we feel will be a perfect match for the kids and myself.

Today I noted an almost happy, anxious overly joyous feeling about starting school.  I felt "I can't wait and want to start right away"  A strange feeling for me.  As I pondered those feelings I realized that I was indeed ready for this new endeavor.  Not that I have it all figured out; or that it will be all "peaches and cream."  I foresee challenges along the way.  This is new for us; but at the same time there is the feeling of satisfaction that indeed this is the best for us right now.  In the past there was always the teeter-tater effect as to weather we should try home-schooling.  This time that feeling is not present.  So we plunge forward and prepare for the new adventures this coming school year will bring.  CARPE DIEM!!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Time passes

So it has been awhile...a long while.  I can honestly say that I have been busy with doctors and school ending and trying to juggle many things that I have not had the energy to write or read much and hence have not written anything or done much on Facebook for that matter.  So today as I am catching up and friends and other people I realized I should also do some catching up on me.

In the course of the last two months time has truly passed.  My daughter turned 4 and my son turned 7.  It is amazing to took at them and see how much they have grown.  Just tonight my husband was looking through some old videos and came across a few of the kids when they were two.  Oh how precious and sweet they were.

Yes they have their moments now and  at times I must remind myself that "this too shall pass" and the character qualities we are trying to instill in them will shine through--even if it is hard to see when they throw the teenage attitudes at us.  My hope comes in knowing that God gave these two incredible children to us because HE felt we were best equipped to raise them to be the best loving adults HE created them to be.  Our job is to simply and lovingly guide and direct them.  Sometimes I feel like I am pushing a mule so I must be more diligent in finding the sweet hey to entice them to follow.

Also in this past few months we learned of surgery our son will have to have.  Info on that to follow.  For now I will relish in the time I have with my children and pray that no matter what life throws at us, my children will know they are loved.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Not the Jones'

If anyone knows me, they know I am a people watcher.  I like to sit back and watch what is happening around me--it can be better than TV at times.  I have noticed lately that people are rightly concerned about the economic situations and yet don't seem to be able navigate thru it without great stress, and in areas that could be made simple if they just got creative.  Sometimes taking advantage (positively) of a situation can make everyone happy.

Growing up I know times were hard for my parents.  We did not have all the cool things others had and often heard the word "no" or "not now" to many a request.  Looking back I do not remember ever being in want.  We never lacked for that which was important, and not having what we wanted made us use our imagination more. 

Now I have 2 small children and hear myself repeating those same "aweful" words to them.  Yes times are hard and require great creativity to stretch budget.  Yet like most we still want to give things to our kids, but I don't think that they NEED everything they think they want.  I have also learned that although not much gets by them, there is a point at which I can use their innocence and simplicity to my advantage and make all happy at the same time.

Fo example, I ran into a parent from my sons class.  She was shopping for her daughters birthday coming up and trying to find all the cool things needed to make a beautiful priness.  She was frustrated that she could not find shoes and the perfect tiara.  I reminded her that a 3 and 4 yr old will grow fast and not be able to use these things long and for 1 day need not have to spend large amounts of money on something that will soon be forgotten.  With a little glitter and glue a pair of "old" shoes can be transformed into princess shoes.  Ribbon and glitter on hair pices she has can become a great tiara.  This parent's face lit up with joy at the thought of ease and not much from the pocket book.

At the end of the day it will not matter that I spent great amouns of money on some overly priced item or a little on something I created.  It will not matter what the other grown ups thought.  What will matter is that my child had a great time, felt special and for a brief moment thought that I was the best mom in the world.

I think that even as adults we try so hard to beat the Jones'; to have more or better things.  When really what matters is how I feel.  Sometimes the quick fix, or simple item is better than the name brand.  Why is the NEED to have the new thing, better thing, more important than wanting what I already have.  How much clutter do we have around our homes, things that are "out dated", but still in great working order.  Running after the NEW thing means I have been denied the joy of that which I got yesterday. 

I only need to worry or be thinking about what the Jones' have if my name is Jones.  In these challenging times, it is time to rethink our thinking and get back to the basics and thing that are simple so that we do not lose sight of what is truely important.

Just an observation...

Friday, March 25, 2011

Precious Moments

We are blessed to have to children that most of the time enjoy playing and being silly together.  Sometimes their arguing and fighting out shadows this fact.  This morning I wished I had a camera to capture something rare for them. 

Shelby had crawled into bed with me after daddy went to work.  A short while later in came Josh.  Trying to keep quiet he was getting settled but managed still to wake Shelby.  As she was scooting over to make room for him, she tried to reach for him.  He thought she wanted his stuffed bear and so a  minor scuffle ensued.  However quickly it stopped as he realized it was his hand she wanted.  She wanted to hold his hand and cuddle.  So as they settled down for some quiet time with mom, holding hands, Josh whispers to Shelby, "I love you." Then she responds, "I love you too."  And I enjoyed this picture and a few more moments of quiet before we a ll got up to start our day.  We are blessed.

Thursday, March 24, 2011


Although it need not be said...we often take the little things for granted until it is too late.  I was reminded of this fact this morning when dropping our son off to school.  Our son despite his many challenges, trys to be independent.  Most of the time he does very well.  This morning he proved that it only takes a misguided footing or minor change in things to turn everything literally upside down. 

When we pulled up to drop him off for school, he proceeded to open the door as usual.  However, today I am not sure exactly what happened..one second I am saying "have a great day" and the next I am watching helplessly as he is falling head first out the door.  I flung out my door to see how he was --praying the whole way around the truck.  Thankfully he is fine, but I kept him home just in case, so I could watch him as he landed on his head.

As I was driving home after this incident, I was reminded how it does not take much to get it us off balance in our day to day walk.  We must keep our eyes and hearts focused  on our heavenly Father so as not to be lead astray.
 Proverbs 3
              5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;
              6 in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.[a]
              7 Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and shun evil.
              8 This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones.

Life is crazy enough without being turned upside down by the unknown that catches us off guard.  I prefer the Topsy-turvys of life being confined to roller coaster rides only--when at all possible.  :)

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Happy Happy Joy Joy

The bright-eyed girl the photo next to me is as precocious as she looks.  She will be 4 soon and most of the time she is head strong and demands what she wants ---not that it gets her what she wants.  However it does not stop her from trying.  I often see a very clear "type A" personality.  None-the-less when she becomes sick it is with great dread of going to the Dr. that she will not come forth and proclaim her ailment.  Thankfully as "mom" I am usually fully equipped to see beyond her fear and can most of the time pin point what is wrong. 

Friday she woke with the 24hr stomach flu.  So fun to start you morning with stomach contents...  So in atypical fashion she laid on the couch all day watching movies and sleeping.  The stomach eruptions finally subsided when we got some Lemon-lime soda and she was able to keep it down.  Thankfully for all she did not have to go see the Dr. or be rushed to the hospital.

So it was with joy this morning when she woke and found when was feeling better that she came rushing into our room and after getting my attention, held my face in her hands, looked me in the eye's and said, "Mama, I feel better.  My tummy does not have to throw up anymore.  I don't have to go to the Dr. I'm much better." 

And I know she was better because she had no more problems and was back bothering her brother and being precocious.  Sometimes it is like being on a roller coaster with her and her different moods.  I pray she out grows her swings and sticks to the swings at the park instead.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Treasure amongst the weeds

So the weeds have been growing crazy due to an abundance of rain.  Rain good; weeds bad.  So today after dropping my son to school my daughter and I proceeded to tackle the weeds in hopes of preparing soil for planting veggies.  The outrageous prices for veggies has once again triggered my thoughts to try planting again. 

I have found it rather difficult in this desert "oasis".  (Mind you and oasis is only pleasant to those in need of such a place.  I do not find this desert much of an oasis.  Just a very hot place to live.)  :)  I have tried in the past to plant strawberries and squash and other edible yummies but have not had success.  5 Yrs ago in early spring I tried Tomatoes and they died (or so I thought) in the desert heat.  I was pleasantly surprised to find in the fall that they came back only the birds, and squirrels beat me to the treasures.  Last fall I tried Edamame beans and Spaghetti Squash.  After many weeks of watering and nurturing I got nothing.

So I was pleasantly surprised as I was toiling in the weeds; being the BMW my husband so fondly calls me.  (BMW = Burly Mountain Woman  Yeah a mountain woman in the desert...)  Anyway, as I was weeding, I come across this yellow object that at first I thought was a ball.  Low and behold it was a tiny Spaghetti Squash.  It was no longer attached to the stem, but looks in good condition.  We shall see when I open it up.  It was the only one...  Then as I got to the area where I planted the beans and seeing many daisies and weeds I find there are actually some strong bean stems.  So I am hopeful again that maybe something will grow.  It seems when I am tending my crops they don't do well.  When I ignore them they grow....

There seems to be some biblical connections here.  still pondering.  However, I do see that even in all the craziness of life therecan be good that comes out of it.  You just have to dig in and pull the weeds to find the treasures.