Showing posts from August, 2015

The Experiment

Reblogging a blog post I wrote for another blog ... if that makes any sense...

THE EXPERIMENTAugust 26, 2015 We arrive at church for Sunday School early. While I assemble two large salads, my children set up for our feast. The scent of pizza wafts through the door ahead of the steaming boxes. People of all ages gather in a circle to share laughter, prayer, and grace. Tuesday Night Sunday School begins. It started out as an experiment. Sunday School teachers were difficult to find. Parents were choosing between dropping children off for Sunday School and attending worship, as doing both seemed too time consuming. We wanted worship to be the family focus on Sundays. Sunday School was banished from Sunday mornings, participation by parents or guardians insisted upon. Amidst skepticism from Church Council members, Tuesday Night Sunday School was born. After sharing a meal, the lesson begins, perhaps involving a skit, a song or a short video. Always, we — families, singles, couples, and fr…

Give Us This Day

Would you be satisfied getting just what you need, only what you need, no more, no less, each day? Would you feel fulfilled?

"Give us this day our daily bread..." (The Lord's Prayer)
In today's culture, finding contentment with the luxury of receiving one's daily bread seems nearly impossible. We are inundated with images, ads, interactions, displays, and conversations that encourage us to want more, do more, and be more. It's difficult to get through a tv show, website, or even an app on your phone without being told your life can somehow be improved with a product, service, or experience. 
My heart yearns to be satisfied with receiving my daily bread. I find myself daily trying to banish thoughts of "if I just had, if I just could, if I was just able to..."
This year I've been on a journey of  Enough, and it hasn't been an easy one. It's easy to perceive Enough when life is easy. It seems exponentially more difficult as my health declines.…

Back to School

If I'm to be honest, I have to say that I'm SO EXCITED that it's time for children to go back to school. We had fun buying back to school clothes for eight children - through donations and for the New Beginnings program at our church that works with Social Services to provide brand new school clothes to help children get a good start to their school year. We joke that should we buy back to school clothes, they'd most likely be pajamas.

You see, when children go back to school, homeschoolers tend to rejoice at the fact that museums and science centers, movie theaters, beaches and other points of interest are relatively empty on weekdays compared to peak Summer months. For homeschool parents like myself who tend toward introversion and dislike large crowds, this is a huge blessing. For homeschool kids with sensory issues, this is amazing.

In peak months, museum and science center staff are usually very busy attending to myriad visitors. It's in the quieter months that …

So Far I've Refrained

"This is a butterfly. On the outside, it looks more like an owl. But it's a butterfly." ~Alia
I've seen facebook posts several times over the past week and finally found I could no longer refrain from responding. They contain rants about how a transgender woman should not identify as a woman. In one post, the author points out that since transgender women cannot have a period, give birth, experience miscarriage, or fear the possibility of a man being violent toward her, she lacks what it takes to be a woman. Another points out that fake boobs and plastic surgery aren't what make a woman.

I met a woman once who was born without a reproductive system. She cannot get pregnant nor give birth. She mourns her inability to have a child of her own. So according to over 200,000 likes on facebook, she shouldn't identify as a woman.

I know another woman who had a double mastectomy and decided to have reconstructive surgery. She has fake boobs. I don't believe that m…

What Aspergers Looks Like

I was talking to someone on the beach one day after apologizing for my oblivious to personal space Aspie child. She asked how one can identify a child with Aspergers, as she wouldn't have known by looking at him. So I thought about it...

This (above) is what Aspergers looks like. And this...

OK, so this is what my eldest son's hand looks like, because apparently having one's picture taken is akin to putting Samwise Gamgee's elven rope around Gollum's neck. ("It burns us!") We swear we're going to make an entire album of pictures of Alex's palm. 

He actually looks like this:

Now, this is quite a rare picture of Alex, because 1. he's looking in the general direction of the camera, 2. there's not a hand to be seen, 3. he's smiling (not that he doesn't smile, it's just he doesn't smile in photos), 4. he's outside (then again, this is his one week outdoors at magical Camp Calumet, the only place we discovered thus far where this…

Vacation Photos

This photo of myself, taken while on vacation at Camp Calumet, is difficult for me to look at. I have battled my weight my entire life. At one point last Summer, I was losing weight and feeling more comfortable in my skin. Then I was taken off psoriatic arthritis medication for seven months for neurological testing and put on prednisone. My energy levels plummeted, as did my ability to walk ... to move. I gained weight. 

No matter what I eat or don't eat or how small I make my portion sizes, I have steadily gained weight ever since becoming less active. I've tried weaning myself off of the prednisone, only to have inflammation take over my body and severely limit my mobility and ability to function. Even back on PsA medication, I'm still not even close to where I was ability-wise before I went off of it.

I do not like weighing this much. I want to be a healthy weight, a task not easily reached when battling chronic exhaustion and overwhelming pain. This photo is painful for …