Sunday, January 27, 2008
Friday, January 25, 2008
from the linked article...
Oct. 11, 2007, is a day the Haaks will never forget. That is when Dr. Leidenix looked into Violet’s eyes with his instruments, and his head fell, like he had seen something he did not want to see.
“I don’t know how to tell you guys this,” the doctor started.
Dr. Leidenix told the Haaks that Violet had Retinoblastoma—cancer in both eyes.
“He said it was very unusual that she had bilateral tumors,” Cassie said.
The odds of a child having Retinoblastoma in one eye is one in 20,000, and the odds for both eyes have not been calculated because it is so rare.
The doctor said Violet’s eyes had fluttered because she was trying to see around the tumors, and the fluttering stopped when she could no longer see.
“We thought she was getting better when the fluttering stopped,” Thomas added.go here to read more...
My MSN news page highlights this article today, "Why forcing your kids to apologize is a bad idea." By Emily Bazelon - Slate Magazine.
It's 6:53 am the day after I posted how I was going to change my life this year and I have nearly sabotaged two of my resolutions. Way to go, me.
Thursday, January 24, 2008
The early show on television always has lots of inspiring information.Since, I have an infant who nurses I tend to catch it quite regularly. This morning, in particular, it was packed full of useful suggestions. It had experts suggesting to refinance your home now while the rates are very low, not to treat your home like an investment but as a place to 'live in'. It talked about saving money in stocks instead of making pricey home improvements. Everyone wants a bigger better home, now. It used to be the average home was less than 1000 square feet, in 2005 the average home had grown to over 2400 square feet. We justify needed more space for storage and things. One of my complaints about our home is that it is too small. If I wouldn't use one entire bedroom as a toy room and buy a lot in bulk we would have a lot more space. So, my goal is to get rid of the toys and shrink my pantry.(resolution number one) I want to clear my mind of remodeling the kitchen and adding a bedroom, when we really don't need the extra space. I made a mental note to converse with the main man about refinancing the house, too.
A blog that I frequent often, called the crunchy chicken, is currently in the middle of a project called (No Overeating While Attempting to Save The Environment (NOWASTE) I like the idea of cleaning out the cabinets while losing weight. Unfortunately one of my biggest pantry hogs currently is my cake mix collection. I currently have over 15 different boxes so I borrowed the Cake Mix Bible from the bookmobile and have been baking like a madwoman. Helping the storage but not the stomach so much. I have been adding my new 'secret' ingredient now when I am cooking. Flax seed was introduced to me by a fellow blogger and I was hooked immediately because I can get it locally. From the site;
'Flax is considered one of nature’s best sources of Omega 3 oils, which is believed to reduce the risk of several forms of cancers, lower cholesterol, stabilize blood sugars, strengthen the immune system, and reduce the risk of heart attacks. In addition, flax is an excellent source of lignans and fiber.'
I used crunchy's calculations to see what my target weight should be and almost fell out of my chair. I felt better adding doable things to my daily routine like doing sit-ups each night and doing an exercise DVD every day.(resolutions number two) I have been successful with implementing these small changes so far, although my first born keeps asking me, "mom, when are you going to get skinny?"
I like the idea of changing a small thing and making a huge difference. Like; helping my kids become more accountable for their actions by making them say they are sorry more often (like they mean it),(resolution number three) adding flax seed to our diet,(resolution number four) drinking more water,(resolutions number five) and eating more foods that grow in my garden and trees and eating less foods that are man made (resolution number six). I want to pray more and spend more time reading the Bible, too(resolution number seven). Last year I read more of God's Word than I have in a long time so I hope I can at least maintain that in 2008.
We spent all day Monday re-arranging the house. It was fun. I got rid of a ton of clutter and several bags of clothing in the process. We swapped the furniture in our two family rooms and I completely redecorated the basement. We finally put nails in the wall. I am so proud of us. It feels good to be organized again, even if it may be short-lived. I used to know where everything was when there were only four hands to move things in this house. Another goal for 2008; LESS IS MORE.(resolution number eight) I don't want more things, I want the house to be less cluttered and more open to drop in visitors. I love having people over but hate the embarrassment of a cluttered and crazy house. Clutter I can change, the crazy comes with the three members under 6.
I am going to do my part about going green, too. (resolution number nine)I failed miserably in the no paper napkin and paper plate project I started earlier this month. I bought napkins a week after trying to go without. We are going with out paper plates, but only because they haven't been on sale. I really want to use real plates but I think you all know how often the dishes get done around here. We would never eat. (at least that would help with the losing weight goal I have) We have replaced light bulbs in the house with more efficient ones and I try to save energy as much as I can the heater is never past 68 although I cheat and use the fireplace when I my toes are frozen. I use the coffee grounds and egg shells for the garden in the summer. I make a point not to buy so many convenience foods with all that throwaway packaging. We need to work together as a family to not waste so much. This is going to be tough on us. I plan to use recycling and reusing as teaching lessons with my children.
Most importantly, I resolve to be less stressed.(resolution number ten) My family suffers most when I am stressed. I am one of those people who is screaming at her kids when the phone rings and I answer it like I am Mrs. Congeniality. I am going to make a point to not let little things get me. When the milk is spilled, I will say, "oh well, accidents happen". I will not feel guilty about spending all afternoon trying to teach a four year old how to play connect four. I will feel blessed to have a sink full of cold dirty dishes. I will smile more. I will tickle more. I will stop comparing my life to others.
This post is mostly for me, so that I can come back later and see how well or not so well I am doing. I probably won't even remember thinking these things so putting it in print is my 'now you have to follow through with it 'cuz it's in print'. 2008 is gonna be great!
Wednesday, January 23, 2008
Thursday, January 17, 2008
- Cooking lessons with your preschooler consist of; open box/can, pour in pan, stir, hurry, move please, get out of the way, just let me do it.
- Table manners learned by observation include; pray while you are chewing, speak while are chewing, drink while you are chewing, hold crying baby while you are chewing, the faster you eat the sooner you can walk around the room with the crying baby so stuff as much food as you can into your mouth at one time.
- Holding the baby (all the time) is much easier than; listening to her cry, waiting for her to calm herself down, fearing for her life when she is on the floor while your four year old is playing hockey in the living room, thinking about her not being a baby anymore.
- The baby is almost three months old and she had not had tummy time yet. See number 3.
- Your children think you are putting the baby in time out when you are using the timer to let the baby cry for 15 minutes at a time because your preschooler says over and over, "when you stop crying mommy will START the timer".
- Doing the dishes is an all day (and all night) project. The kids think 'normal' is always having a sink full of (cold) soapy water and dirty dishes.
- There are no clean bottles at 8 am. See number 6.
- It is obvious if there are clean bottles because all clean dishes remain drying on the counter tops. They never get put in those wooden boxes on the wall mom calls cabinets.
- Poop is cause for celebration!
- You tell your six year old to lay something on the baby's bed and she immediately puts it on your bed. *sigh*
Maybe we ought to start a Montrose Development Corporation? Or do we already have one of those?
I had to drive 10 miles this morning to fill up my almost empty vehicle so that I can drive the three blocks to the school every day. It was a pain. But still not painful enough to make me want to buy the gas station and put in my own 100 hour work week. Hopefully someday soon someone will make the sacrifice. It's a tough one, for sure.
Wednesday, January 16, 2008
#3 has started talking. I will coo and she will coo. Then she smiles a huge dorky smile and coos again. The other kids think this is so much fun. Most of the noises are gurgly sound from deep in her throat, but sometimes we hear a bit of her voice. It's pretty amazing. #1 can't wait for her to say dada or mama. I can't believe how fast she is growing. Last night we changed the batteries in both bouncy chairs(again)and now she watches the bubbles and kicks the toy bar. Pretty soon she'll be driving. *sigh*
Oh, I almost forgot. As he was removing the old icky giant wash sink and counter top piece, he non nonchalantly asked me, "Do you really need a sink in the laundry room?" WHAT!?!?! How can such an ingenious man forget the three months out of the year his baseball uniform is soaking in the sink and washing out all the paintbrushes and cleaning muddy boots! He goes on to say, "Nobody has sinks in laundry rooms, do they?" Stick with your day job, babe. Contractor man you are not.
Saturday, January 12, 2008
Later, the kids were in the backyard getting ready to snow surf when a neighbor boy came over with no hat, unzipped coat and missing his snow pants. #1 said, "You can come sledding with us if you go home and get your snow pants on." to which the neighbor boy responded, "My mom is letting me sled today without my snow pants, I don't know why." #3 then said, "Well, at least zip your coat or you are gonna freeze your butt off."
A few minutes later they were snow surfing. I wish life was this easy again.
Friday, January 11, 2008
LifeStride Women's Susan Boot
Price: $24.98 - $50.99
Diba Women's Gill Boot
Just for giggles...
Luichiny Women's Annabel Sweater Boot
Price: $29.98 - $99.95
Wednesday, January 09, 2008
MONTROSE MUCKDOGS POKER TOURNAMENT
DATE: February 23rd
BUY IN: $40
LOCATION: MONTROSE AMERICAN LEGION ON MAIN STREET
Registration will begin at 2:30 so that we can get started by 3:30. BBQ’s and nachos will be provided. BYOB but there is a bar across the street. There will be unlimited re-buys for the first 90 minutes. $10 will get you quarter of the chips you got to start the game. 50% of everything taken in will be paid back out(includes the money from re-buys). The amount and number of places paid out will depend on the number of players. Last year we had 50 players and paid out to the top 8. We’re a little more organized this year so we should have more players.
**all proceeds will go to the Muckdogs baseball team to help with expenses for the upcoming year.
I borrowed the image from here.
Monday, January 07, 2008
Dad is super busy at the hospital. Things are always busy this time of year. He has been late the last couple of nights coming home because he has taken late transport team flights and they don't tend to follow the change of shift schedule...his co-worker Kathy passed away. The wake was last night. He was able to get a few days off this weekend although the answering machine was full of requests for him to come in. He is back at it today. I wish I could be happy about him getting so much overtime. We miss him and when the hospital is a full busy place that's never a really good thing.
#1 has been reading books on manners and good behavior at school. She is full of pointers for me. She keeps telling me to take a deep breath or go do something else and I will feel better. She is seeing an allergist tomorrow for her 'snorts' and her under the eye circles. We hope to get good news. I am not sure what that is really. Allergies mean medication. No allergies mean sleep apnia probably and surgery to remove the adenoids and tonsils. She has had these symptoms for most of her life and is dealing with them well. On Saturday we made our 2008 ice-skating debut and then went sledding at grandma's. Sunday she went skating again for almost 4 hours. She came home with blisters on her feet and raw ankles. Her skin was wrinkled like a raisin. But, she said she had fun and she would do it again.
#2 is 20 months behind #1, but he keeps up pretty good. He is writing his letters and copying words from books. He keeps asking me when he is going to loose teeth like #1. He is enjoying his Christmas gifts especially a power ranger costume that he wears 24/7. He is a video game fanatic and wonders why we didn't buy a Wii like his cousins did. Sigh. Four going on 14?!?!?!
#3 decided on a weekend trip that mom just wasn't good enough and has taken to drinking lots and lots of formula. (I mean lots!) Which would be fine, except it makes for a bit of constipation issues. She is getting bigger and stronger by the minute and raises her arms above her head frequently to which mommy says, "Praise the Lord!". She is very demanding and gets bored of the bouncy chair and the swing after a few moments. Big brother and big sister take turns talking to her so mommy can at least do a sink full of dishes or blog a bit:). She is beginning to communicate with sounds and we are all loving it. Whoever said parenting is like riding a bike is way off. Every child is uniquely different and special and that makes for a whole lotta learning each time. I probably should be considered an expert by now, but I feel like each day something surprises me.It keeps me guessing.What worked a minute ago may not work this minute...
I feel like a chicken with my head cut off. I am constantly running around from room to room, trying to keep up. I start doing something and then remember the real reason I came into the room only to confuse myself and my children by having several unfinished tasks scattered throughout the house. #1 got some hand me down clothes from her cousin and I have been meaning to go through her closet to get rid of some things that are too small, but I can never complete it. I called last week to get the car checked on, it's leaking a bit of oil. I haven't been able to remember to ask someone to give me a ride to drop off the van. So I am sure the mechanic thinks I am nuts for calling to get it in and not ever bringing it down. Yesterday I was able to make a homemade meal and clean up a bit. It was a good day. Thankfully IF the kids clean their rooms they are rewarded with being able to peel potatoes so I got a lot of help :). How many more years of that do I have left? I hope to get to the school this week and start practicing with the students for the oral interpretation contest that is coming very soon. I am nervous about juggling practice times around daddy's ever increasing schedule. I hope it works out for the kids and they feel prepared for contest.
That's about it for the time being. #3 is demanding a bit of attention at the moment so I am signing off. Happy Monday!
Friday, January 04, 2008
Finally he spoke up. "Work has been rough lately, hon." Now my husband normally doesn't say much of anything so I knew it was really important when he described to me, for the next few minutes, the ordeal that two of his co-workers have been dealing with. It's the big C again. The bully is back and in full force.
One woman that works with dh has been battling it for awhile and just recently may have caught pneumonia. She had to get a tube in her throat to breathe. Imagine working with this woman for years and then having to work on her. Dh says she is in ICU. She is uncomfortable and his heart was busting with pain for her.
Another man just recently was having headaches and went to the doc to see if he could get some relief. He didn't expect to find a brain tumor and stage 4 of the bully. What a shock. DH could barely get the words out of his mouth as he described that the man was given a timeline of 1-2 years. The last time I saw this person he held my #3 in his arms like a baby doll and everyone called him grandpa.
We spent the next while talking about when we found out my diagnosis and how scary and lonely we felt. I was given pretty good news. It was curable. I feel pretty guilty hearing about others whose chance of survival is not so good. We haven't had the scan to read the results of the chemotherapy, but the doc says things are going along just fine.
The truth is we have cancer. It does not have us. After my surgery a friend came to visit and brought me a book called, "There's No Place Like Hope" by Vicki Girard. A guide to beating cancer in mind-sized bites.I love the title and I still read the book pretty regularly. It keeps me on the right track of thinking positively. That bully can drag you down if you don't train your brain to hope and have faith in God.
I don't know if these two people have faith in God, but I know that I do and I am going to use my faith along with the power of prayer to send up some SOS signals to let Him know I am not going to let the bully take them without a fight.
The amazing thing about prayer is that it equally helps the pray-er and the pray-ee. So if you have a prayer list please add Kathy and Gordy to it.
Having faith doesn't mean that we never wonder why we got cancer, only that we believe that God has an answer for all that we go through.It's okay to be mad at God sometimes, just don't refuse to talk to him about it.
Mother Teresa said, "I know God won't give me anything I can't handle. I just wish He didn't trust me so much."
The absolute hardest part about fighting the bully is the not knowing part. If we could only see the future; skip ahead a chapter or two; watch the previews. I believe that knowing that God has a plan for my life was the reason I didn't go nuts while I was waiting to find out what kind of bully I was fighting. I read the last page of the book and I knew the ending already. I accepted that. It made the whole process a lot easier for me.
My husband and I have heavy hearts. The knowledge of this woman and man and their present fight with the bully is weighing us down. We cannot imagine how the families are coping. But, we are wearing the armor of hope. We can't give them much but we can support them and pray for them and so we come to you, where all things are possible.
Please pour your love and light over them and their families. Bring them peace of mind and heart. Help them to choose to live each day fully and treasure the journey of their life. Remind them that they are already survivors. Each moment they are alive they are beating that bully. Give them the strength to honor your will for them. Remind them to come to you for comfort and peace and the power to overcome.
Thank you heavenly Father,
Thursday, January 03, 2008
I was rinsing the dishes to get a clean sink to drain the pasta that we were getting ready to eat for supper while I helped #2 put the dinosaur floor puzzle together on the kitchen table and my #3 was in my arms eating.
I have been avoiding coffee since after Thanksgiving to help with my milk supply. CURSE YOU PEPPERMINT MOCHA! My sil HAD some in the fridge this past weekend. Notice the past tense.
On a more serious note, any one out there tried those homeopathic herbs or minerals to increase breast milk? Are they worth the pretty penny? I am slowly losing speed here and my freezer quickly diminished...
not wanting to be left out, #2 was playing the Wii at his cousins and as he swung the bat too agressively his tiny frame went flying into the big screen. Now he has a scar in his eyebrow that matches his daddy's
who needs stitches when you have a bit of super glue?
- I am gonna need to sharpen my hair to match my new sharp clothes
- (while shopping) hey mom here are some shirts I don't already have
- ooo, I want that sparkly one (only funny if you know #2 is a boy
- hey look #1 has some new moves (the baby is kicking in her swing)
- that car has a nice big trunk, we can fit a lot of dead bodies in there (guess who watched too much CSI, guess he's not asleep yet:))
- I already got too much stuff, let's save that toy for next year
- these are my favorite shoes, cuz they make me run the fastest
- (after trying on the baseball pants he got from grandma) when I get my baseball shirt on to match Jake is gonna call me Gordo!
- I keep trying but I get frustrated with myself, that's when I get naughty
- (after a long lecture on saying sorry like you mean it) well the teacher says sorry is not enough sometimes
- I try not to get strikes, but sometimes I fall out of my chair
- in the car on a road trip to MN #1 has two pair of sunglasses and won't share, I say to her you can't wear two at the same time she says "WATCH AND LEARN" I was too shocked to do anything but laugh. Now #2 says it all the time. Note to self; do not laugh as sassy phrases #1 says, it will come back to haunt me.
- mom, you have to write it down or you will forget
- my calendars all out, guess the year is over and done with, what do I do now?
- Thank you Jesus and Santa. You both know I love pink and sparkly.
- (after watching a documentary on TLC about conjoined twins) #3 is like my twin but with her own body and head!
- (writing words is what she is obsessed with lately, she brings me out a list she has made all by herself) Mom, here is a list of things you and dad do 1) fit, 2) cuk, 3) cleen. I read them to her and she says, "not fit, FIGHT"