Monday, February 28, 2011

Not Really Into Writing....

Since Memere and Papere are here I'm not too motivated to write. We are enjoying the visit and also the meetings for week of prayer.The weather is not springy anymore and that really puts a damper on getting out and doing a lot of fun stuff and yard work. It was raining when I woke up this morning, so hopefully that is a sign that warmer days are close.

The twins are enjoying the company. Mostly they are doing well, but beginning to show their true colors to Memere. Missy needed the run to the stop sign yesterday but Buster couldn't let her have all the fun, then Brianna joined and so it was a positive experience. Missy is struggling with being cooperative regarding her bowel problem and therefor spent an enormous amount of time in the bathroom sitting on the throne and washing her clothes out. I would no sooner let her out and she would have another problem. Finally she got the picture around supper time and did what she should have done in the morning, but we still decided both kiddos needed to go to bed early and mom stayed home from the meeting to watch them. Mom started puttering around my kitchen and stayed up until midnight cleaning out cupboards and fridge and organizing. It all looks lovely this morning.

I'm giving Christina a crash course in cursive writing. Two things my girls have always thought were not that important - handwriting and spelling. Bri came to me and asked me to help her with her spelling last week and Christina finally decided she needed to learn to write quickly and nicely. Might have to do with some handwritten thank you cards Christina needed to write that were hard for her to do and didn't quite turn out like she had hoped. Live and learn. Even the little things in life are important to the Lord and character building. I've learned that when a person sees their need the learning suddenly goes a lot faster.

Twalisa should be delighted to know that Missy's new doll's name is Twalisa. I told her it was Kirsten and she said "no, it's Twalisa." :-) As for the new bicycle, it's like Buster has to learn to ride all over again. He can't seem to get on the bike and just balance. He has to be on the seat and of course, since this one is a bit bigger his feet don't touch the ground and he just falls over.If someone will hold it up he can get on and ride down the hill, but he crashes when he wants to stop. It's crazy how each little thing must be taught individually. Nothing - and I mean NOTHING comes naturally.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Find of the Week!

Mom and I went SHOPPING today. We mostly shopped second hand stores - it's more fun. The prices don't make you gasp for air and when you find something good you know you got a deal!  We picked up Vanessa and ate out, otherwise we had no kids and that was enjoyable.:-) I need the break every once in awhile. The twins have been doing very well this week, though. I picked up a nice little bike for Buster for $12.40. It has gears and hand brakes and everything. It's bigger than his orange bike and smaller than the blue bike waiting for him to grow into. It's not coordinated enough to ride a bike too big for him. This one I think will be perfect.

We made this Goodwill find for $3.50.  It's the retired American Girl Doll Kirsten.
Missy is quite pleased. 
I found the clothes at the opposite end of the store from where I found the doll all bunched up in a little bag priced for $2.50.
The bonnet has some trials, but other than that it's a nice doll for a little 7 year old Miss.

A Word from Vanessa

Vanessa wrote this article last quarter and I thought she was going to share it so that family and friends could read it, but she's so busy lately the blog is sadly neglected. I am sure Jason and Antionette will enjoy it. And yes, it does mention adoption - and that is what this blog is about, so it fits. Enjoy!                                                       
Mission Trips
 A few years ago, a group of several families from my church was preparing for a mission trip to Tanzania, Africa. Like any other mission trip, it included a lot of fundraising, working, and saving before embarking on the adventure. About that time, someone, promoting a mission project in a different part of Africa, came asking for help for their project, but she said specifically that they did not want short term mission trips. She felt that mission trips spent so much money that could be used more efficiently to help the needy if people would just send it to the missionaries already in third world countries. Her argument at first seemed reasonable, and it made many wonder if short term mission trips were a worthwhile cause. Sadly, her view of short term mission trips is not singular. Others are questioning whether short term mission trips should be supported. After considering this challenge to the importance of short term mission trips, I still believe that in the big picture mission trips are essential. The experience gained by those who go on a mission trip has far reaching effects that can impact both those who go and those in need for years afterward.
 Those wondering whether mission trips are a legitimate and worthwhile endeavor are concerned mainly because of the extreme financial costs involved. Critics point out that mission trips cost thousands of dollars to help out with a job that would cost only a fraction of the money if sent to workers already in the mission field. Looking at the expenses in this light makes mission trips look like a stupendous waste of resources, yet this mentality fails to look at the bigger implications of mission trips.
Mission trips are a way for people to connect with those in need, to understand their needs in a mutual way. This is important. Everyone has heard that there are poverty stricken countries in the world. Most people understand, at least intellectually, that there are people who don’t have enough food, that there are children without homes, and that people die every day from lack of treatment in third world countries. It seems, though, that this knowledge has become too general. While sheltered in the comforts and securities of their homes, people are numb to the desperation of the needy. This isn’t necessarily anyone’s fault. It’s just that the suffering of the needy is so far away, and we don’t see it in real life every day. This is exactly why mission trips are so important.  Short term mission trips make the needs of others real to us. They show us that the suffering people in the world are real. They are the babies we held, the children we played with, and the people we laughed with. When these relationships are made, we realize that it’s not okay that they are starving, dying of AIDS, or begging on the streets living from one day to the next without hope; it’s not okay because they are our friends. When the needs of the real world become personal, it drives us to help, to take action, to do something. This is what mission trips are all about. Yes, they give already established missions help with building projects and evangelistic efforts, but if that was all these trips accomplished than I would certainly agree that simply donating the money to those already in the mission field would be a more useful contribution. But mission trips have lasting impacts. Seeing, touching, and loving the people who have so little yet are so thankful makes giving to them a necessity. Living with less becomes easier and sacrificing for others so much more essential. The mission trip is an investment that results in later financial aid for missions and the needy because people want to give when they are connected with those in need. After they have actually gone, seen, and felt those needs they will give- sometimes in extraordinary ways.
If mission trips are such an important investment, then why not just volunteer and serve closer to home? Sharing with the people in our own towns and in our country is vital, but somehow we don’t seem to notice these people, and sometimes it takes going on a foreign mission trip to open our eyes to the needs close by. This might seem like a strange theory except that mission trips make us relook at our priorities. The needs in foreign countries are desperate. Maybe it’s because they have less technology and distractions that bombard our minds at home, or maybe it’s just being away from our everyday ‘normal’ routines, but on short term mission trips we can’t help but see poverty in almost every direction. It screams into our dull minds that need is real.  When we return home, this vivid picture of desperation doesn’t leave us, and we begin to notice the needs of others at home. We are inspired to help not only the needy in faraway places but the local as well.
That’s what our mission trip did for us. When we came home from Tanzania back in December of 2008, we knew that we must do something more for God and others than we were already doing. Three of our families that went applied to adoption agencies, and a year later, we had brought home children from Africa, China, and even from our own state. In comparison with the great need in the world, the impact that taking in these children made seems very small, yet it has made the world of difference for these kids. This adoption journey has been long and hard for all of us. It has stretched our characters until we’ve felt unable to be stretched anymore, yet it’s from this journey that we have learned and grown. It is undeniable that the impact of our mission trip has been life changing for us.
This life changing impact is not singular to our group. Take Katie as an example. She went on her first mission trip when she graduated from high school. It made such an impression on her that she went back to stay at nineteen years old.  She began a child sponsorship program that sends children to school and provides food for them every day. Now, Katie has taken in fourteen girls as her own. She cares for the sick, delivers babies, feeds whole villages of starving people, and holds Bible studies for the people. She lives passionately for them doing far more than most people do in their lifetimes, and it started with a short term mission trip. She wrote on her blog a couple months ago, “Poverty, and squalor, and disease, and desolation are REAL. They have names, and faces that stare back, and hands that squeeze mine tight. They are beautiful people in need of REAL love.” Katie is amazing, but hers is not a singular experience. She and so many other people have chosen to do this great work because the needs of others have become real and personal to them. If people like Katie didn’t have the opportunity to see the needs of the world in real life, and if they didn’t see the for themselves the work that missionaries do full time to relieve the suffering of others and give them hope, then would they  choose to dedicate their lives to helping these needy ones? Would there be missionaries in the future?
It’s a reoccurring theme. Mission trips impact those who go. Serving changes our perspectives from looking at ourselves to looking at the needs of others. It changes our motivations and our attitudes- how we look at life.  We realize how little so many people have, how hard they work to survive, and how thankful they are. It makes it hard for us to complain when our life at home is made so easy by things like running water, ovens, stoves, laundry machines, and motor run plows. On foreign mission trips, we learn how these people live. We have the privilege to work right alongside them. One young man that stands out in my mind as representing the need and kind hospitality, the poverty and yet the gratefulness of these people is a boy named Alex. Although his parents lived faraway he stayed with his grandmother to take care of her. He was a leader of the scores of children in the village. He was bright, friendly and very interested in these white visitors in his village. We made very good friends with Alex. He would come over with the many other boys and play soccer with us; he came to church and would come around to help us work on our building project. Close to before we left, he brought us to his home to meet his grandmother. His home was a tiny dilapidated mud brick hut. Smoke, from the cooking fire, fused from inside. They had very little except for his prized possession- a guinea pig. Alex’s grandmother was old and frail, but she was happy and greeted us warmly. They both were so thankful despite their need. We will never be able to push memories like these away. These people are our friends, and these friendships have made us thankful for what we have and more thankful for what we can give.
 When talking to my uncle, a full time missionary and a head mission trip and evangelism coordinator in Tanzania Africa, about why he felt that organizing church mission trips is so important, he said that mission trips are for the people that go and their churches back home. The experiences that those who go on mission trips gain are definitely spread. When those who have gone come back to their churches and share their experiences, how they’ve grown, what they’ve seen, and just the needs of the mission field in general, it inspires and strengthens everyone’s faith and urges them to do more to help. The church will as a whole give more to the needy and those working in full time missions.
Short term mission trips are an investment. Their impact has an effect for years afterward, and they touch not only the lives of those who go on one or those who are helped by one. They speak to people who have not had the opportunity to go. Short term mission trips must be encouraged. By these, the funds, the missionaries, and the hearts to help will continue to grow.
Vanessa Ford* . English 101 . Response Paper . 12-03-10

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Dreaming Gardens

Apparently Buster didn't need to go running this morning which was probably a good thing since it was snowing, windy and cold today. Brrrrr.... I think winter is back! Yuck.

The twins spent a surprising amount of time playing with the dollhouse together as well as playing with the legos and the new tether ball. I am in shock and awe. I can't believe it.

Mom and I spent a lot of time looking at seed catalogs and looking up gardening information online. I really want to build a greenhouse. Mom has a lot of experience with a lot of different kinds so I was picking her brains. We had heard that you can't use pvc pipe with greenhouse plastic but mom called someone with experience and we did some research. It should be just fine here. If we are concerned the suggestion is to give the pvc a coat of paint. I'm kind of thinking of a hoop house with roll up sides. We had them when we lived in Lesotho. They were super duper, only my memory is so foggy, that I have to question mom as to what they were really like. I lived in Lesotho 20 years ago and it seems her memory is way better than mine....

Another thing I am really getting interested in doing is growing mircro-greens.  I bought a great book and ordered several seed catalogs. We grow sprouts off and on, but growing micro-greens is taking it a step further. We recently watched Food, Inc. It really truly causes one to think about the stuff we eat. We've always been health conscious  vegetarians following the 8 laws of health to the best of our ability, but we can always learn more and do more and experiment towards better health in this world where everyone is dying of cancer or other disease.

Brianna and I are also interested in growing a market garden of tomatoes. A guy down the road had a beautiful market tomato and corn patch for many years and last year he quit. I'm not sure if I have as big a patch as he does, but we're gonna give it a shot.

We have a large triangle of land we have not ever used for anything. It's time to put it to use. Years ago it was a pig pen which totally fit into the prayer the girls prayed before we moved here from California. Dear Jesus, please help us to find a home in the country with a little red barn, a pond and NO pigs. Amen. ~~~~~ The Lord provided the very place we live in with the smallest, little red barn and tiny pond, and a pig pen with no pigs. The Lord is interested in the details of children's prayers. We've lived here 9 years.

Brianna brought home a set of DVDs on organic gardening from Eden Valley and I already started watching them.

Steve finally made it to the witness stand. This whole court case thing is going on 2 years... Hopefully his part is over. He said the hardest part was identifying the defendant. How do you recognize someone you saw two years ago at the scene of an accident strapped to a backboard and drunk?  Christina and Brianna watched the proceedings.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

B- Day

It's so good to have Bri home! She already made great pizza for our party. She made the cheese with a recipe she brought home made with coconut milk...

And it's great to have mom and dad here, too. We're having fun just being together. We celebrated the twins' birthday today. We made gluten-free cake and cupcakes because I wasn't sure one or the other would turn out. They both did and so did my concocted frosting... OBVIOUSLY!

We pulled out the dollhouse that was sent to Missy for Christmas and Mom put it together. It's a huge, gorgeous thing that I wonder if she will really learn to play with. It has a grand piano and a family of 4 and a canopy bed, etc... very nice. Buster doesn't have a clue how to play with lego, so Steve is on the floor playing legos.... I think for Missy, fish that she is, is the swim suit and goggles were her best present.


This morning Buster was having trouble with being happy and following directions so I suggested we go running again. I didn't know yesterday that it's a mile to the stop sign. Really, I didn't know!!! Anyway, he was less than thrilled about the idea, but he couldn't choose to be happy so we went 

and a funny thing
he stopped crying long before we went outside.

He ran ahead of me and when I put my hand on his back like I did yesterday
he said,
"No, mom, I can do it!!"

When we got to the stop sign I was congratulating him on his awesome running
and he said,
"I feel strong and powerful, it's really a delight!"


Where are you getting all that vocabulary?
Must be good circulation happening to the brain. . . 
I'll remind you of that statement next time we go running.
Running 2 miles before breakfast two days in a row is a pretty good record for a little guy who hates to get off the couch. Maybe this is an answer to my prayer.

But notice how I"m having to run, too.


Christina got up at 5 and made her bread this morning. 
We're amazed at how her dollars are climbing towards her goal!

Monday, February 21, 2011

On the Edge of Emotional


The house isn't cleaning itself.

Having two extra little ones to babysit isn't helping much, either.

Only a few more hours and Bri will be home !!!!

Can anyone give me a dose of motivation??

I'm proud of Buster. He's quite emotional today. Tears are on the edge of his eyelids at all times, but he isn't falling apart and he did his school pages well. He also hurt both hands on the zip line. He didn't want to wear the harness and so he grabbed the tail end of the rope and let it drag him down the bank and it took a bit of skin off of every finger. He came and bravely ask for a band aid. I see he must have been grabbing at grasses, too because there are a lot of slivers, but I wasn't about to push my luck  so we'll deal with them when he's more emotionally solid. There are so many things this kiddo hasn't learned by experience yet about playing outdoors. Last summer he was too cautious and lazy to try anything. Hopefully he doesn't have to learn too many lessons all at once this summer.

Besides the tears threatening to spill, I can tell when Buster is struggling because his sensory integration stuff starts waving big red flags. He's walking on his tip-toes, holding his toothbrush like it's gonna burn him, eating funny and looking like he doesn't quite fit in his skin or he's stiff or something. Anybody know why this stuff seems to flair up like this? What do you do about it?

Run Buster, Run!

He surprised me, actually. He ran the length of Flowery Lane this morning.... mind you, he did it screaming his head off while I ran with my hand on his back. It's great entertainment for the neighborhood, I'm sure.

I had to drive Steve to work so I could have the car because some friends needed me to babysit for them as their little baby girl has been in the hospital all week long. We left at 6:30 before the twins were awake, but by the time I got home Buster was giving Christina grief over nothing. I came in and gave him a time-out, but he proceeded to howl and kick the furniture. I decided he needed to work off the nasties. He wasn't too impressed with my idea of running it off, but the day is gorgeous and I needed something to stop the downward spiral.

I told him we would turn around and return home when the screaming was ended. He decided to ratchet it up a couple notches and I took that to mean he was excited to go a long way.  Near the end of the road, Tank, the big golden we are babysitting decided to visit the little Australian Shepherd tied to the clothesline by one of the farm houses. Golden retriever or no, the big brute is alpha dog. Buster and I had to stop running and end the fight...and lo and behold, Buster forgot to cry after that. He raced me to the stop sign and then practically ran all the way home.  Really, that surprised me!

When we were almost home Buster says, "I love you mom!"
I love you too, kiddo, but because I love you I have to be firm with you. Do you feel better now?
Anytime you feel crabby we can run the length of the road. Do you remember when you were younger and all you did was scream and fuss? Do you remember how I had to be so firm with you all the time?
Do you want to be like that - screaming and fussing and being unhappy all the time?
So, I have to be firm with you so that you are not unhappy. You want me to be firm, don't you?
Yes. I don't want to scream anymore. I don't want to be naughty anymore. I sorry I fuss at you and not obey.
Good. Well, you really can run, you know! You are getting quite strong.

So, instead of saving up my energy for cleaning up this big ol house before Brianna and my folks arrive this evening, I ran . It felt good, but I'm old and we'll see if this house cleans itself up or not.

Sunday, February 20, 2011


My neck and upper back and right shoulder, that is. I have hardly been able to move all day. Not sure what up with that.

Christina took the twins out to play. She created a jumping obstacle course and then got them working on their speed. It was pretty funny to watch. Their jump really was improving by the time she let them quit.

Missy was cranky earlier and so I put her in time out in her bed for a bit. She promptly fell asleep, so I guess we can figure out what the trouble was.

Buster did quite a bit of phonics and reading. He's doing surprisingly well.He knows his sight words and can read short vowel sound words. Later Missy came and asked me to do some school with her. She's working on learning the sounds of the vowels.

We didn't accomplish much else today. I'm too stiff and sore for some reason.

Our Verse of the Week

Proverbs 30:32

  “If you play the fool and exalt yourself,
   or if you plan evil,
   clap your hand over your mouth!

Now here's a practical solution to an age old problem... :-)

Twins have their own set of special temptations in life. If one child is getting himself into trouble the other will be sure to let you know just how awesome they are and how they would NEVER think to engage in such despicable  behavior!! In fact, you surely MUST know that they are an angel incapable of any wrong doing whatsoever.

The next thing you know - the tables are turned and "angel" is in hot water and the wrong doer is proclaiming his virtues. It's a vicious cycle..... Pride comes before a fall and exalting yourself on high is a catalyst for a very hard fall!!

So, my dear children, clap you hand over your mouth and stay on level ground. There is no one good, no not one. . .

As for planning evil, I think we are much too impulsive to plan anything yet, but it never hurts to hide the Word in our hearts to guard against later temptations.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Loving Spring

It's early and might just be here on a visit, but it's lovely. The last few days Christina and I have been burning brush, raking and cleaning up the flower beds.One evening we baked potatoes in the coals of our burn pile. Our fire was rip roaring hot so I pulled coals out just for the potatoes and even then some of the potatoes  were a little over done. It was soooooo exciting for Missy! She was so happy to carry our bucket of foil wrapped potatoes up to the house for supper.

We completely cleaned out the front flower bed. Under all the dead stuff are irises and tulips peeking through the soil.The grass kind of got away on us last summer. That year will ever be the "summer of the twins"... yard work suffered greatly, but hey, last year at this time the twins were pooping in their pants every few minutes and this year they wouldn't think of such a thing. Maybe things will be prettier around the house as well as more pleasant smelling.

If I can shake the weakness this migraine is giving me we'll plant some of  the onion sets this afternoon. Seems crazy early, but we've had a month of nice weather and even if the cold returns it won't hurt the onions.

The ducks are good company when we work outdoors. Turn the hose on and they'll sit by us and dabble in the water for hours. Otherwise they are on the hunt for grubs and bugs happy to be free to roam. They fly in big circles and land on the pond and put on a big splashing show. Christina has done a good job of keeping them socialized while Brianna has been gone. She's discovered they love their necks rubbed.

ps.200 onion bulbs planted :-)

How Do I Know?

It's amazing.

I just know when they are lying.

They can have all the "evidence in their favor" but I have this feeling, way deep down that it's all a boldfaced lie and all the evidence is manufactured.

I would never want to accuse them of lying when they are telling the truth, but there are a few tricks to ascertaining the truth and when those fail me, time will eventually tell. Thankfully, these kiddos, when directly confronted usually come clean, but if not their eyes give them away.

I tell them that God helps me to know. And I believe that.

Put away lying, speak every man truth. Eph.4:25

Can you guess what the issue at our house is this morning? LOL!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Big Birthday Coming Up

All birthdays are a big deal to the twins, but this time it will be their turn.

They can't wait.

When we talk about past birthdays the only one they talk about is their 6th birthday when we took them to the park the second time we met them. We stuck candles in doughnuts, sang happy birthday, gave them each a present and played in the park.

It's their only memory of celebrating their birthday.

Everytime Buster plays with his giant floor puzzle he reminds me that he got it for his 6th birthday from us. Whenever Missy wears the butterfly dress she reminds me that I gave it to her on her 6th birthday.  Buster told someone last week that the birthday in the park was his first birthday. Everybody laughed because he's obviously he's no one year old.

They don't talk about any of their other possessions that they brought with them having any meaning or who might have given it to them.

With much prodding we cannot come up with any other birthday memory. Nothing. Nada!

I wonder if having no birthday memories is because of poor memory, or they were too young mentally, or because there are no photos to stimulate memory,  or is it that no one celebrated their birthday in the past? Surely not, but I guess we'll never really know.

Missy is constantly talking about the birthday cake she and I are going to make. She makes sure we're talking gluten-free and chocolate. If she had her way there would also be cupcakes with lots of frosting, but given the choice between cupcakes and a big cake she'll take the cake every time. She has big plans! Buster is more content to just see what the day will bring. Missy also likes to remind everyone that, as she puts her hand on the top of her head, she is getting bigger! If anyone complements her behavior or abilities she reminds everyone she's almost 7.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Morning Routine Got Shorter

No more lights in the morning for 20 minutes! Yeah!!! They have new colored filters. Both of them are dark and relaxing. We do them at bedtime now and they can even fall asleep with them on. That SHOULD make our mornings that much easier - but don't count on it.

I found a paragraph that exactly describes what the twins do. I read it to Steve and he wanted it printed out. Sometimes it is hard to figure out what is going on, but when you read something like this it's so exact, so precisely what happens that you know without a doubt your reading about your own children. Suddenly it all makes sense.

Yesterday was prime example. We had to leave early for yonder city for their eye appointment. I got them up early. They were excited (because they LOVE going out) and I expected them to get right to business. I made their breakfast and put it out for them. BUT the strangest thing, though they were not fighting the routine and were happy to get ready to go, even with a helping hand they WOULD NOT move at more than a snail's pace. The more I asked them to hurry the slower they got. I looked at Steve and said, "You know, I think they don't know what hurry means. It's like they can't get the idea in their head."

We ended up leaving their breakfast on the counter and handing them an apple because they were not ready to go when it was time.  Can't have cereal and milk in the car and gluten free muffins are crumbly at best.

Well, I was so fooled and they so love when I am fooled. Sacrificing breakfast was worth it.

They have one pace – theirs. No amount of "hurry up everyone is waiting on you" will work – they must be in control and you have just told them they are. Need the child to finish lunch so everyone can go to the playground – he will eat five times slower than usual. Need the child to dress and line up, he will scatter papers, drop clothing, fail to locate gloves, wander around the room – anything to slow the process and control it further. Five minutes later he may be kissing your hand or stroking your cheek for you with absolutely no sense of having caused the mayhem that ensues from his actions.
All those days we were late for church, all those times they couldn't get into the car before speech? Yup! All calculated to control, to get a reaction, to get attention.  Does Missy and Buster sit there and go, "Okay, how can I best control this situation?" Sometimes, yes. Sometimes no. It's just how they operate, but push them, react, or get upset and you will see everything become very intentional indeed.

I pray that I might be WISE as a serpent and HARMLESS as a dove. I need to work on that dove look - totally expressionless in times of stress. :-)

Monday, February 14, 2011

Catch Up

Just got back from a trip to the way-too-far-away city for the twin's vision therapy appointment. Buster is sporting new glasses. Thick as coke bottles, but with prisms this time. Don't tell him I don't like them. I asked if later when it matters to him if we paid for the glasses out of pocket instead of using State resources if they could be made better. They said they could make them WAY better looking, but for now they encouraged me to stay with these.

Yesterday Missy was wandering around bored - a precursor to trouble. I had her empty all her dresser drawers out and refold all the clothes and put them in like piles. She did a great job and stuck with it to the end. Later she needed to pay restitution for destroying someone's property and I had her do all of Buster's drawers too. This is a job she likes to do and it's much needed because when they are digging for clothes they completely stir everything up and shirts and pants and socks are all mixed up in every drawer.

Missy is in bed for a 30 minute nap. She has recently started whining again. Yesterday she had two naps. Today hopefully there will only be one. One whine and I am certain you are just too tired to handle life without a nap. I am thankful when I remember the days when putting these kids to bed for a nap meant an all out screaming and rage session that could last for hours on end with them beating their fists against the wall and tearing the room to pieces. The change has been so slow, but it's change none-the-less.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

A Gift from God

It is of the LORD's mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.
 They are new every morning: 
great is thy faithfulness.
 The LORD is my portion, 
saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him.
 The LORD is good unto them that wait for him, 
to the soul that seeketh him.
 It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the LORD.
Lamentations 3:22-26

I very nearly didn't get it done.
In fact, I eventually had to delegated the job to Vanessa.
but oh, how happy we are that we took care of those bulbs and planted them and protected them from getting frozen, then uncovered them and brought them in to grow.
They are a gift from God,
but notice we had to plant them...

It reminds me;
The Lord has many gifts for us... but often we don't take the time to
look to Him for those gifts
dig for the hidden treasure,
or plant the seeds He offers
and wait.

He says, You have not because you ask not.
Ask and it shall be given you.
Seek and you shall find.
Knock and the door shall be opened unto you.

The bulbs didn't plant themselves, or water themselves,
or make their way to the sunny window,
but I couldn't MAKE them grow.
They are God's GIFT.
And my morning wouldn't be half so pleasant and cheery without them.
 The LORD is good unto them that wait for him, 
to the soul that seeketh him.
 It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the LORD.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

One Year Ago... and Shooting the Preacher

We met the twins one year ago today.

We celebrated by going on an 11 mile hike.... LOL!  The twins aren't nearly as impressed with themselves as we are with them and they were not very impressed with the last couple of miles in the dark. Honestly, though, they did exceptionally well. There was no real fussing or complaining.

We are all sore.

We did the hike in under 4 hours.

During the sermon at church Buster found a hair tie. He played quietly with it in his hand. Once he shot it at the floor by his feet, but he looked a little sheepish and found other use for it, so I returned my attention to the sermon on our need for the Holy Spirit.  He is uncommonly quiet and still generally in church. I saw no need to take the rubber band away....

He must have had some tension on it, because suddenly, the thing broke, shot out of his hand and hit the pulpit.

The preacher startled and said, "Hmmmm, that was interesting!"

Buster was mortified

and buried his head in my lap.

I thought he might cry, but suddenly he was seized with a fit of giggles... and then Christina and the little girl behind me were hit with the same trouble.

The giggles were terribly contagious and spreading.

I knew I had to get it contained... but it was all we mothers could do to maintain our composure ourselves.... I finally had to cover Buster's head with his winter coat and pinch his ear a little while he worked on pulling himself together, his head down in my lap.

Ah, boys. How boring the world would be without them.

Friday, February 11, 2011

An A+ on Being a Romantic

My husband get's an A+ on being a romantic. He's gone all out and there's a surprise around every corner. He makes reservations ahead for every place and there's no waiting or wondering if there's room.

We ate at another nice place.... Thai food. Lots of flavor; ginger, mint, lemon grass. Yummy stuff and suddenly tickets to the symphony appeared and, of course, that was just across the street. A box of chocolates shows up at the least expected of places and a valentine's card. He's gone all out.

He's in his meeting right now. The internet is the pits, so I"m in this little cubicle downstairs trying to get my email... but the set up is bad and I'll be suffering carpel tunnel in about five minutes... I'll just make this quick.

The kids are doing great. Buster won't let himself go to the bathroom. I was surprised. I'd hoped he'd just go along with things. Miralax and prune juice here we come!!  I guess he needs this mean old mom! Otherwise, Sherri says they've been good for her. They all went sledding yesterday - which was amazing to me. We haven't had snow in a month and 3 or 4 miles down the road they are still in the dead of winter. I should have packed snow clothes.

Yesterday, Vanessa took care of dinner for the Elderly Talls....Christina made bread with Tori for the Morgans, and I heard Brianna made muffins with Dakota and Johanna. I guess you could say cooking is in their blood.

Vanessa finally went in and talked to her English teacher. She has had NO feedback whatsoever regarding how she is doing in the class. No assignments have been returned or anything, so, she went into the office and asked how she was doing in the class. The teacher told her she's getting a B+.... which only complicated matters because that is NOT the grade Vanessa is after and how can she fix the problem if she doesn't know where she's having trouble? I question that kind of teaching... I am pretty sure she's headed back to the teacher's office for more concrete feedback.... Wow. She's a different kid than I was, much more bold and assertive. She knows what she's after and she isn't letting the dust settle till she gets there.

Vanessa had a great time with Amanda - the new Bible worker. "OH MOM! She's just like me!!! Both are  missionary nurses in the making and they visited for three hours without a moment of awkwardness or hesitation. It's good. Very good.

Christina has had orders for 14 loaves of bread this week. Thanks to all who are supporting her efforts to raise money for her trip to Tanzania! She never thought she could make money quite like this before. It's amazing for a thirteen year old to count up the dollars as they come in. People are SUPER, DUPER generous. There's no fixed price on the bread. She even received a check in mail from a young man she doesn't really know and he lives too far away to send him bread. :-)

We are all very glad to hear Jason and Antionette and the girls are back in Tanzania safe and sound after all their weeks of traveling all over Africa.

The Lord's been good to all of us.

Thursday, February 10, 2011


Steve is a great planner....

He plans and plans and plans.

Me not so much.

But I do see that it pays off when a person plans.

We are definitely enjoying our get-away!!

We had a very enjoyable evening and ate at a fancy place with an awesome, incredible view.

It took us awhile to just focus on being together and to stop talking about the stressful things in our lives like:

Money, the suburban that needs replacing, Brianna's health, when to start Christina's braces, our children' education, the balancing act of family, church, and work, the twins.... OH, MY! The twins and all that they need...

I had an IEP meeting at the school for the twins yesterday morning. The PT, OT, and Speech gals were there along with the principle (our friend Rhett).  Okay, I know the twins needs a lot of help, but there's nothing like sitting in a meeting talking about all their weaknesses and struggles and problems to remind me just how far we have to go, yet. It's OVERWHELMING to say the least. YES, they have come a LONG, LONG way. It's obvious and clear that we have made huge strides, but it feels like we are attempting to empty the ocean with a kid's sand bucket.

The teachers were encouraging, and I simply could not do it without them, however, they brought me back to a reality check and I left wondering how I could do more.

I have gotten used to the kids weird speech. I know what they are saying, I know what they are talking about and my brain fills in the blanks. People who don't live with them can't do that.

It's surprising to me that Missy comes off bright and "with it" to people so much more above Buster in many, many ways. She has some people fooled. In every test, and every assessment she is consistently behind her brother cognitively and  physically by about 2 years. Even the speech teacher doesn't think her speech issues are as big as her brother's... BUT I totally questioned her on that. I don't think 30 minutes once a week is giving her a total picture. She sees Buster as totally random and off the wall, which is sort of true, but I can always find the connection. Hey, at least he is thinking ! If this teacher would have known him a year ago.... talk about RANDOM!!! Hee Haw!!

I see progress, but it isn't enough. Both Steve and I both see that we need to be super careful about our expectations or we could inadvertently cause them undue frustration and even tantrums. For instance, we know that it is hard for Buster to tie his shoes. Physically he is NOT coordinated and it takes longer and is more tedious for him than the next person. Same with making his bed. It's hard for him. It takes a LOT of effort and determination to do it right and well. Does that mean we do those things for him? For sure, NO! Should I allow him to do a slip-shod job of it? NO! But we can't rush him. We have to be patient and understanding. We have to encourage him a lot because he lacks confidence. He must learn to be persevering and develop those skills rather than continue on in laziness hoping the world will take care of everything and him all by itself.

For Missy, making the bed and tying her shoe is not the issue. Physically she has mastered those things, which is kind of interesting because her gross motor skills are poor at best and her fine motor skills are described as 3 years behind her peers. It's her gross motor planning that get  her in great trouble :-)  Once started she will make the bed, but to get from the bed to the dresser and on to the task of choosing clothes and  getting dressed,  that's where the breakdown occurs.

Both children are hesitant to initiate play. They don't explore. They don't seem to have enough curiosity to propel them to try the unknown. Everything must be modeled and demonstrated and cued. Their spatial awareness, balance, and coordination are all poor. The lack of core strength effects their fine motor skills. They are stiff and rigid in their over all play. They do everything exactly as it has been modeled to them without the slightest deviation in set-up and routine, though their poor coordination throws them off and the ensuing frustration dampens their desire.

There has got to be a way to help them better. Pray with me on that.

Sooooooo, the blood test results are in




Missy is allergic to



That's all that showed up. The gluten and the dairy was not expected to show up, but here we are and I don't know where to head from here. I simply can't put them back on gluten yet. I see so many benefits. The doctor wants me to put them back on gluten for 2 months and then retest. I can't do it. Missy especially suffers on gluten.

My hubby is at his meeting. I'm thinking of finding the exercise machine.

Good day to you all!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Unbelievable Steal of a Deal - or was it?

I ended up on a road I had never been on before and found out that there is a little second hand store in the senior activity center that I'd never heard of and since I had time to kill between appointments I decided to stop. There was lots of old stuff. I browsed around and found a cool denim jacket for Christina for $3 and I was headed towards the cash when....

An older couple walked in carrying a few items to donate to the store....

The gentleman was carrying a Presto Pressure Canner box which caught my eye immediately. I've been in need of a good pressure canner for a couple of years. My old ones need new seals and such but they are so old I can't find the right parts anywhere.

The man put the box on the counter and I moved in real close, put my arm over the box and looked at the store operator and said,"Soon as you put a price on this, it's sold."

Everyone looked startled.

You should have seen the envious looks I garnered. Whew!

One lady approached me and asked, "Are you really going to buy that?"

I sure AM. 

"Oh, well, I sure I hope I am standing by the door when the next one arrives".
(She was way too old to have kids to feed, or I might have felt sorry and let her have it.)

I made off with my prize after they had ascertained that to buy the thing new would have cost me $120 dollars. I think they didn't give me as good a deal as they should have, because I was obviously very eager to have it, but I still saved a pile of money, but you want to know the sad part of the story?

They original owner pointed to the box and asked, "So, you are going to buy that thing?"

Yes sir. I have 5 kids who are eating me out of house and home. I need to do more canning this coming summer than I did last summer.

"Oh, he said, man, if you would have been on the other side of the door when I first got here I would have given it to you! "

Bummer. He should have NEVER told me that.

That took a little of the sweet out of my deal! 

Here's to a happy canning season!

The Bread Baker

Our resident bread baker has been baking bread to fill her orders since 5 AM. Funny how she gets orders Monday night and we have to be in town by 10 AM Tuesday for appointments. She's like how am I going to do this?

Just like every other baker in the world, kiddo. They get up early and have the bread ready to sell before breakfast.

Her loaves are gorgeous and maybe a little extra huge this morning. Since she sent out her flyer saying she bakes bread to raise money for her trip to Tanzania the orders have been really coming in steady, but not just for bread.
Please, bake me a batch of gluten-free muffins. 
Can you babysit for me Thursday night, oh and what about Sunday night?
Can you take care of my birds and cat this weekend? 
I'll pay you to keep C practicing his times tables.

It's good. She's having to balance school and work and keep track of all her orders.

Missy's been saying, "I love you mommy!" over and over today. That's a good sign that today should go happily. Buster sang all through his lights... that's a very good sign!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Gaining Weight Despite Gluten-Free Diet

The twins were troopers getting their blood drawn. I was surprised. I expected quite a few tears and some drama, but there wasn't much to worry about. They are having some basic food allergy testing done. They are both being tested for celiac, though we don't expect real accurate results since they have been off gluten for quite awhile.

Both children were at the doctor's office in their pajamas. Buster was having meltdowns over making his bed this morning and Missy just wasn't doing it. So we came home for a game of redo.  Buster got in the groove and made it happen. Missy is back in bed.

It's all a game, so I'm playing it.

This morning when Buster was all mad about making his bed I tried to come up with a reason for it. I questioned him from different angles and he came up with, "Nothing".  He said nothing happened to set him off. No one did anything. I said, "So, you came up with a bunch of distorted thoughts all on your own? You let you mind get all in a tangle over making your bed when you know you will have to make it anyway?? Wow! That's amazing. You are going to have to think hard now to come up with good thoughts that will get you where you want to go. Are you really having a good time being mad?"


"Is this so much fun you want to do it again tomorrow?"


We then recited our verse of the week: Psalm 50:15 Call upon Me in the day of trouble, I will deliver you and you will glorify Me. I called on God and He called on God and He almost made a change, but  it's so hard to lose face and admit it was not worth it without some time and space so I ended up sending him to bed to think about it and slowly he came around, but it was too late to get dressed. He barely had time to swallow a bit of food before we left at 8:25.

Missy has gained 12 pounds in the 11 months she has lived here. She gained 9 of them in the last 5 months. She looks thinner because she is not puffy and swollen anymore. Obviously there are no concerns about her losing weight on the the gluten free diet. She has been on it at least 5 months. She grew an inch and half in 5 months, but I had thought she would have grown more than that. Possibly her thinner look makes her seem taller. I've blown the soy free diet so many times this week that I will give it up and try again next week when I get back from our little get-away.

This is what happens to bread that rises well and has no elasticity in it! It was really, really good Rosemary Pumpkin bread, though. In fact all our guests Friday night chose to eat it over the regular homemade loaves.

If you are in need of a good gluten-free, soy-free, dairy-free recipe book, check out the Flying Apron's Baking Book. It on half price right now. I think it uses more oil and possibly more sweetener than necessary, but that's adjustable.We've fallen in love with the carrot muffin recipe.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Just Have to Announce

That today was awesome for both kids.

They've occupied themselves well. They have had a song on their lips most of the time, they got creative and used their imagination today. They were pretending they were camping and building a camp fire. I looked out the window in time to see Buster tell his sister to bow her head he was having grace. He prayed forever! LOL. They also had several art projects going. Missy must have taken 2 hours on one picture.

Not to say that Missy didn't take a few swipes at her brother with uncalled for harsh words a few times, but it's been a good day from the beginning to end.

I love days like this.

Not What We Said

Missy, the little stinker, went to her Sabbath school class and announced that her birthday is in a couple weeks and she is turning 7 and she's going to primary with Joyanna! The teacher came to me wondering. LOL. There is no way.

Missy knows we said she had to learn to read first.We've had several major discussions on this topic. She appears to accept the facts when we explain things, however, she is actively looking for a loophole. After doing school for one day last week she is telling people she is learning to read.

This is just an example of her determination to find a way to get her heart's desire. You have to admire that kind of doggedness. I'm positive if we could harness her tenacious will she could do mighty things for God one day.

He Puked at Me

 The morning routine was accomplished two days in a row!

The twins did very well with the morning routine yesterday. They had no desire to do it over and over and over all day again. This morning they are on the ball, too. I'm keeping the redo, redo, redo plan within reach so that if anyone so much as whines about the morning routine, or stalls for 5 minutes they'll soon remember to be grateful they are usually required to only do it once a day. I think this plan was a direct answer to prayer.

Okay... so Buster just leaned over the couch I'm sitting on after downing his water real quick and said to me, "I did it mom!" and promptly puked the water all over the couch.  Whew! he barely missed me. Well, it serves to remind there's a balance to everything. Why is it kids have to be in one extreme or the other. LOL.

Christina went skiing last night. It wasn't good snow. In fact it was mostly ice. She managed to take out Caroline, then Caleb, then some unknown girl and then lost her skis. Thankfully no one was hurt. Caroline and Caleb had the best time reciting how comical it was to watch Christina get off the chair lift.

Vanessa's anxious to meet Abundant Life's new Bible worker. The girl is 19 and just graduated from Arise. She found 9 Bible study interests in the first week she was here. Vanessa will be spending most of the week in town staying at Peggy's to help with the Talls and to be close to the college while I am gone. Peggy is getting married in a week and Vanessa will be grandparent sitting for her while she goes on her honeymoon.

We came home from our walk yesterday to find our house eerily silent and cold. I had just remarked how warm it was outside - nearly 50 degrees only to come in the house and find that it was about 50 degrees in here. Not sure what's up with the furnace, but we have had to get the wood stove going. Problem is, it only heats the livingroom. We know the furnace is OLD but it's not in the budget to replace it just now.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Redo, Redo, Redo.... Wash, Rinse and Repeat...

Buster is sitting beside me on the couch looking at a book. I just asked him how many breakfasts he had today and neither, he nor I know for sure. He just says "Many" but it's closer to 4 or 5 for him.

Cold mush or hot cereal from the rice cooker with milk was the menu.

I ran myself ragged doing this morning routine over and over. They would do great on most of it and then there would be a glitch where they stalled, or got upset and back into pajamas and bed they went. Both kids had a major tantrum each during the course of the day. Buster's was when I sent him to bed for repeat number 2. Missy's was when she knew I was running to the store and she got into her "I'm going to tell you what I'm going to do, and I'm going to town" mode. I said no and she blew royally. I put her back to bed. I called home to see if they had stayed in bed when I left and she had fallen asleep. She just went back to bed for another repeat since she was having a problem with my directions.

Missy can make her bed in 3 minutes flat. She can get dressed in less than that if the clothes are picked out. I've had all three timers going most of the day.

We practiced and practiced our morning routine  so we have it down to a fine art. I am warning them, if they can't do it tomorrow then hey, we know how to practice!

Christina managed to make 6 loaves of bread for her customers. I made really nice carrot muffins that are gluten-free and a new kind of gluten-free bread with rosemary in it, and two different pot pies - between serving breakfasts, of course.

Call Me Crazy!!

and I'm more than sure it's not going to make any other morning better, but it makes me feel like I am doing something to make a difference.

We started the morning over.

Completely over.

They had to get back into bed and when I decided it was time to get up I pretended it was morning and we did the routine from start to finish. AMAZING! Except for light therapy it took them all of 15 minutes to get dressed, make the bed, use the bathroom and drink their water. Then they did lights all over again. I gave the cold breakfast sitting on the counter since earlier. Had them brush their teeth and each go do an outside chore.... and

They are just getting back to find out WE ARE DOING IT ALL OVER AGAIN - including breakfast!

Goodnight! See you in the morning ;-)

I Was Wrong

 I really thought Missy would be on board this morning. After all, we WERE going to bake a cake together. Things are no different this morning than any other morning ... and Buster isn't doing anything either.

Somehow they are holding me hostage to the way they want the morning to go. I have to stop caring, but I don't know how. I want them to follow the rules. I want them to be at breakfast. I want them to do what the rest of the family does. I don't want a battle every single morning. I try not to engage, but when the clock hits 8:30 and they are still standing around doing nothing there has to be some consequence and that's where the eruption occurs. 

I have no desire to make a gluten-free cake anymore. They aren't helping me make it. I'll feel bad later when they are watching everybody else eat Sean's regular birthday cake.

What to do....

I'm praying, praying, praying...

Thursday, February 3, 2011


Today, when Buster was doing his 1st grade activity sheets for reading and phonics, Missy brought out a little kindergarten workbook, opened it in the middle and asked what to do. I was a little surprised. She likes to color, and she likes to cut, and she is even willing to write her letters, but anything more than that she would fight me tooth-and-nail.  I chose not to fight it. It's battle enough to get her dressed in a timely fashion in the morning. I figure once she learned to follow directions we would go there, but she's not quite 7 so we have lots of time for learning to read. Besides, I have this worry that she is dyslexic and think learning to read will be an uphill road.

Today she decided she actually would like to learn something. I spent some time with her teaching her things and she did catch on. She has conditioned herself to only say what she thinks you want to hear, though,  and that doesn't work very well for school work. Hopefully she'll soon figure that out, but it has something to do with confidence. I felt like she really tried and really understood and WANTED TO! YAY!!

I am excited to see her little brain clicking. Before she always did everything wrong whether or not she knew the answer. It was her way of staying in control. I knew it was time to quit today when she colored everything pink - monkeys, bananas, mountains, trees. I had her fix the page and then put it away. I won't be drawn into a battle over school with her.

Her little friend moved from the Kindergarten class at church to Primary. The impact on Missy was huge. Steve patiently explained that Joyanna knows how to read. She is in first grade and does school work every day. She is ready for a more challenging class. Missy spends so much of her time fighting obedience that she has not time or desire to learn to read and isn't ready to go to the Primary class.

She is SOOOO not ready for Primary in every way... but maybe she's ready to do a page or two of phonics activities a few days a week. We'll see.

Learning the Hard Way

Trying to teach

from cause to effect,
to think logically,
to learn from past mistakes,
that negative thoughts propel negative actions,
and all the rest of it,
is tedious and and slow, and PLAIN HARD WORK!

Yesterday was LONG and HARD. We spent a lot of time "connecting the dots" and dealing with natural consequences as well as a few not-so-natural consequences designed to reinforce the lessons both Steve and I were trying to teach. I needed Steve because my patience was nearly at an end.

Today Buster is right on the ball.He can tell you backwards and forwards what happens when you make the right choices, and what happens when you do not. He can connect the dots. And he's happy to do the right thing.

Missy can, too... but she is determined that it won't be so. She's been very sad this morning. I held her on my lap and let her cry, but I cannot waiver on the lessons she MUST learn. I know that tomorrow she will do the right thing. She might even do the right thing for 2 or 3 days in a row... but the disobedience will continue to cycle because her will is super strong and inclination rules.  Buster will cycle, too, his cycle is longer, though and stretching out.

Can you really teach illogical people to think logically? I guess we'll find out... :-)

Pictures of the Church

I keep forgetting to post these pics. I took them early before church started... so most people had not arrived.
There is still a ton of work being done in the other parts of the building, but here's the sanctuary:

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Cautiously Optimistic

I think I might have prayed them out of the neighborhood.

My prayer was actually, them or us.

I could not ever feel safe with that crew of teens up there on the hill. It's not that they are bad people that I know of. I don't know if they do drugs, or drink excessively, though I do go around picking up the beer cans they throw into the pasture, I don't know what they do in their spare time besides dirt bike. I guess it's not really abnormal for some teens to have crowds of friends over creating a raucous day and night.

Though they are our closest neighbor, their house isn't not really that close but my beef was their driving!

I didn't like not being able to sleep for the all night parties, I was totally frustrated with their dog, and I find their strewn garbage disgusting, but it's the FEAR of one of my kids being killed by their immature driving that had me praying them, or us out of the neighborhood.

The worst driving offender didn't even live there. He was just there all the time driving around that one lane blind corner at top speed with no heed to what or who he might hit.

We're still fighting the insurance thing. How in the world can it be our fault for stopping in the road with nowhere else to go  when he was flying, swerving from side to side out of control and hitting the front of our suburban sideways?

Last Saturday, Mary and I were taking our kids for a walk. We wandered along the ditch and through the orchard but found ourselves at the road and the shortest way home was by the road. I dread driving that corner - walking it was terrifying.  I warned all the kids to stay to the side. A child's idea of the side and MY idea of the side vary by about 4 or 5 feet and just as we crested the hill on the blind corner here came that blasted little black Toyota! I screamed, Mary yelled, we ran, we herded our brood off in the nick of time. I was upset. Vanessa was still shaking half an hour later. I was steaming actually.

You wouldn't believe it, but a sheriff knocked on the door 45 minutes later. He wanted to serve Steve yet another subpoena for that court case that won't go away, but since I answered the door I was like, "I have a question for YOU!!'

We explained the problem and shared how we didn't know what to do because it's a private road and we aren't interested in starting a war. He kindly said he would send out an alert to the rest of the police and that our whole road would feel more police presence. We described the little black Toyota and he said he'd keep an eye out.

Two days later Christina and I were on the highway when we spotted our "favorite" little black Toyota being trailed by an unmarked cop car. . .  He's a MARKED man that poor guy! LOL.

Well, all has been quiet at the neighbors house this week and the few times we have seen people there they were loading furniture. We're wondering if it's because we saw the Dad who owns the place take a run up there the other day for the first time in months... The place has been getting trashed.

But we don't really know if they are moving... or just getting rid of furniture.

I'm still praying.  And I'm hoping it's them 'cause our life is crazy enough right now without a move. Wouldn't that turn our lives upside down? ... but then, I wonder who will move in next?

Beating My Head Against a Brick Wall

So, I have a lot of reason to believe Missy slept last night. Some of her most obvious allergy reaction signs are simmering down for the moment and she is even in a good mood.


Will she obey?
Will she do anything I ask?


And neither will he.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Child Insomniac

I am  beginning to realize just how much of the night Missy is awake.

I wonder if she got a full half hour of sleep last night.

You can only imagine what shape she was in this morning or what kind of mood she met me with.

What's the deal?

She's not afraid or she wouldn't be singing and talking and playing with her dolls.

When I insist that she stay in bed I hear tales from the others downstairs of a lot of tossing and turning and huffing going on in her room. Last night was unbelievable, but it's actually not that uncommon and most likely contributes to some of the attitudes troubles.

Buster sleeps. I know because his room is just next to mine.

It doesn't seem to make any difference if Missy exercises hard or not. It's unpredictable. I am wondering if there is more food sensitivities that we don't know of that would contribute to her sleep issues?  While her health is improving all the time, there are enough signs that all is not perfect yet. I took her off soy today. We'll just give it a week or two and see if it helps.

I did schedule a doctor's appointment for a consult about allergy and celiac testing.

In other news:

  • I just got my first phone call from adoption support. That was a long time in coming!!
  • The kids say they just saw the first robin a few minutes ago. 
  • The twins have lived here for a whole 11 months today.
  • Vanessa withdrew from her PE class because when she was sick she turned in an assignment a few hours late, which all on it's own dropped her grade from an A to a B... and well, that would have messed up her GPA and one credit wasn't worth that kind of drop. Instead, for exercise she is taking Missy running in the afternoons. (I don't ever remember having a concern that big over a B grade.... but then I never tried to get into a nursing school, either.)
  • Vanessa ran into her first glitch in the college yesterday. The teacher is having his students watch a movie...but he has kindly said she could do an alternative assignment. Now we are frantically trying to find a book or documentary that adheres to the criteria he set out.