Showing posts from September, 2012


Every time I post in this blog, or talk to people with radical honesty about my life, I take risks. 

I risk the judgement of others.

Judge away. It's not that I don't care what others think about me, it's just that, well, actually, I don't care what others think about me. I am who I am, I believe what I believe, and I respect others' rights to their own thoughts, opinions, and beliefs. I just hope others will give me the same respect.

I risk losing a lot.

I risk losing friends who don't view the world in the same way I do. Perhaps I'm too Christian (or not Christian enough) for some, too liberal for others, and too crunchy for many...I've even been accused of being too open-minded. Is that actually possible? Perhaps I say something that goes so far against what someone holds dear that they can't see past my statement to the person they call friend.

I risk losing opportunities to get together with friends or to take care of other people's children bec…

And We're Off!

Life with PsA is never boring. It can be all sorts of exciting, actually. 

Take yesterday afternoon, for example. Out of the blue we gathered our children together and told them to pack their bags! As they excitedly rushed to gather clothing and other items for their seemingly spontaneous outing, I finished up a phone call with my parents, thanking them profusely before hanging up. We loaded everyone into the van and were off on a whirlwind trip. 

My shoulders and neck had been bothering me, so earlier that day I decided to take a nap. Upon waking, I couldn't raise my arms. After some deliberation, I decided a trip to the local emergency department was in order. Not knowing what was going on or how long I'd be there, my parents sprang into action and accepted a horde of children into their home for the night. After dropping me off at the emergency department, my husband transported children to Gramma and Papa's house and returned to keep me company while the meds performed m…


Some days I wish that Calgon could REALLY take me away.

Picture it ... you're having a rough day. You draw yourself a nice, steamy bubble bath, using Calgon, of course. You climb in, utter the words, "Calgon, take me away" and are whisked to a hammock on a tropical island where you every need and want is anticipated and met.

Sounds lovely. Amazing. Enchanting.

Until you realize that should you be whisked away from your bathtub, you'd not be wearing any clothing. This could be problematic, but easily remedied by wearing a bathing suit in the bath - then you'd be ready for life on the beach. But what if, instead of a tropical paradise, Calgon took you away to Alaska in the dead of Winter. You might freeze to death in just a bathing suit - and soaking wet from your bath.

Be careful what you wish for.

And never post on a double-dose of tramadol, or this is what you get. 

Change of Plans...

I lay in bed contemplating whether or not to go back to sleep or to get up. I was Calling In Sick after all. Then the decision was made for me.

The phone rang.
And just like that, I was propelled from my bed, took my meds, got dressed and was out the door. After a short drive, I arrived and was greeted by a happy, but somewhat confused two-year-old Miss M and her Mama. Mama was clearly giddy with anticipation, yet trying to prepare herself for possibly another false alarm. Mama showered while I entertained Miss M, who had decided to collect all the shoes she could find, since Mama told her to find her shoes. 

Daddy's arrival home further confused Miss M, but she gave cheerful hugs and kisses and watched them drive off from the back seat of my car. After a ride full of "Look at THAT!"s and "See Haley? See Alia? See Lola? See Garci?"s we did a little Big Sister Day shopping before making our way to my house.
Duplos, coloring, and blowing bubbles filled the rest of th…

Calling In Sick

My PsA is majorly flaring. I can barely bend/straighten my right elbow, my left thumb, and my right pinky finger. My SI joints are making it difficult to walk, stand or sit. It feels like I have a knife between my shoulder blades and my entire chest hurts when I breathe. Nearly every joint in my body is involved, and I'm still waiting to hear from my rheumy if I can go back on Remicade, which I haven't taken in months (or other biologic), but may have to wait until after seeing my gastroenterologist in a week and a half. I may have to wait until after testing after seeing my gastro ... or never, depending on what the tests say. My body hasn't been this bad in a long time. I'd almost forgotten it could get this bad. My allergies haven't been this bad in ages as well.

So ... I'm taking a sick day tomorrow. I'm a homeschooling mom, so that basically means I'm not running errands, not taking the kids anywhere, not doing any housework, and it will be a day of…

Welcome Back!

Welcome back!

Well, maybe welcome is the wrong word. I can't say that I'm happy you returned. In fact, I could have gone much longer without your presence in my life. I was living quite contentedly in your absence, and had quite forgotten your imposing and overbearing nature.

One would think that living with you day in and day out would be embedded in my memory forever, but how quickly I seem to forget such painful periods of my life: you waking me up at random times throughout the night; interfering whenever I try to reply to someone online or get some work done; intruding on simple everyday tasks, making them longer and more arduous. You can be such a pain!

I have no idea how I lived with you for so long without losing my mind. It's amazing what a positive difference time away from you made in my life, bringing all the more frustration upon your return. And really, did you have to bring your best friend along as well?

Just you wait! Something positive will come from your int…


At 10AM the phone rang. My husband, standing next to the phone, answered. It was my sister, asking if we were still planning on going apple picking that day. He said he'd have to get back to her on that - we had a five minute old baby and were a bit preoccupied at the moment. 

I sat in the birth pool, thoughts clouded by birth bliss, cradling my newly born, humongous son in my arms. Ready to dry off and nurse, we were wrapped in a towel and our entourage followed us down the hallway to our bedroom, where we settled in to nurse. But what of his name? It was Daddy's decision. We looked at his round head, his chubby body, and were engulfed in his easy-going energy - Coren Ryu, Crescent Moon Dragon. 
For seven years, you have blessed our life, Moondragon! I love you now, and always, and no matter what!

How does one celebrate such a momentous occasion as the anniversary of one's birth?

If you're a seven-year-old Moondragon, you...

Play with the Bakugan birthday present.

 Make fri…

Thar Be Pirates 'Ere!

The scent of mulled cider wafts through the kitchen as a horde of pirates tears through the door on their way in search of buried treasure.

Climbing aboard the pirate ship, they search for clues of its whereabouts.

X marks the spot, and the smallest pirates dig up their treasure.

An array of jewels, tattoos, and shiny things now adorning their bodies and filling their loot bags, they go back to their piratey antics.

Avast! It's time for the older pirates to follow ye olde treasure map to the treasure buried deep within the woods, through fierce obstacles and certain danger. 

Returning triumphant, the pirates take what they can - give nothing back. 

New piratey fashion statements are started by a two year old pirate. 

Yes, today my house was overrun by pirates at our annual Pirate Party. 

We host the Pirate Party to celebrate our fourth child's birthday, to get together with friends and have fun, and to raise money and gift cards for a local charity that helps give families in need in …

A Special Bunch of 9/11 Heroes...

Today I remember a select bunch of heroes. 

Eleven years ago, I loaded my precious cargo into the car, turned on the radio, and heard the words, "Smoke is pouring out of one of the World Trade Center towers." I ran into the house, told my husband to turn on the tv, and got back into the car. As I drove, I listened to a reporter who was on the streets of New York City. I listened as the second airplane hit. As I pulled into a parking space in front of the fire station, the first tower fell. Upon entering the fire station, I wasn't sure what to say first - to wish my sister a happy birthday or to break the news in case she hadn't heard. That's when I noticed the tv in the office and the firefighters gathered around it. Approaching the fire fighters, I was assured that our fire station field trip would continue as scheduled. 

As our group of adults, toddlers and preschoolers explored the fire station, learned about the different types of fire trucks, the firefighter&#…

Twenty 20 Twenty-four Hours To Go

Wednesday, approximately 5PM: Alex's hand collides with Haley's pinkie finger on her right hand. Screaming ensues. A cold compress is applied. 

Minutes later, guests arrive. Haley is distracted by an adorable eight-month-old and stops complaining about her finger.

6ish: Eight-month-old bundle of cuteness leaves, and Haley is once again in agony - because her younger brother sits on her hurting finger. Ice is applied. 

6:01 PM: Auntie Jen and Daddy have been called and a plan is in effect for responsible adults to be on call for boys being left at home whilst girls head to the ED. Dinner is eaten at the girls' request, as they don't want to be in the ED and starving.

6:25 PM: We head to the local Emergency Department. 

6:29 PM: We arrive at the ED, register, vitals are taken, and we wait. Crazy four year old does crazy things, including begging her sister to make the doctors hook her up to the heart monitor and asking me to tell the doctors to x-ray her skull after they x-ra…

A Most Upsetting Thing

Alia is upset. 

It all started several days ago when a friend of a friend messaged me to see if I'd be available to entertain her adorable eight-month-old two days a week for a couple months. We asked and answered questions, and decided it best that the family of three come for a visit before making a final decision. 

To prepare my kids for the possibility that we'd be entertaining a baby a couple days a week for a while, and for the arrival of guests to our house, I told them about baby A and his moms. 

Alia was taken aback. TWO moms. Now, don't get me wrong, she knows that families come in all shapes and sizes. She knows families in all shapes and sizes. The thing is, she never thought about the ramifications of having two moms before. The more she thought about it, the more she got upset. Finally, she came to me and expressed how wrong it is. Not how wrong it was that A has two moms, but how wrong it is that she doesn't. Why did I marry a Daddy and not a Mommy? Wouldn&…

The Writing On the Wall

A four letter word is written on the wall next to the bathroom mirror - the mirror in my bathroom. 

Upon seeing the four letters, I was instantly annoyed ... and then, curious. Approaching the three-year-old graffiti artist with a neutral tone of voice, I inquired as to whether or not she had decorated the bathroom wall with that four-letter-word. A smile swept over her face, reaching her eyes. 

She joyfully admitted to her crime, "Isn't it WONDERFUL?" 

"Is it wonderful that you broke two rules - not to write on anything but paper and not to climb up onto the bathroom counter?" 

"No, that's not wonderful. I probably should NOT have done that. But..."


"I love you SO MUCH I wanted to write your name there - M A M A - so I can see it even when I can't see you. And if I put my face just right, it's like you're right next to me."

My heart melted, my agitation with it.

We could have gotten into a conversation about breakin…


Stress is high, finances are low, and many of us worry about how to make ends meet. I admit that what money I have to put in the offering plate at church isn’t much compared to what others might be able to give.  All things considered, to help alleviate some financial stress I’ve decided I’m not going to give any of my money to the church.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m very thankful for what I have, and am very invested in our church, but God has entrusted me with a lot – amazing kids, a wonderful husband, a house, and everything that comes with nurturing children and a marriage and managing a household. He has gifted my husband with a job that pays enough to keep a roof over our heads and food on our table. God has blessed me with the opportunity to take care of other people’s children so we have “extra” money every now and then. God has brought people into my life who care for me and challenge me, as well as include me in a network of mutual support so that I am rarely in need of anything…