Month: February 2014

MY HEART

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This past weekend was one of pride.  I love watching my kids showing respect with the judges, and making new friends at a TaeKwonDo tournament.  They both did great!! They came home with 18 inch trophy’s and Greta came home with the Beast Trophy for breaking.  I think that trophy is a prized possession now.  There were only 4 given away in each age group and she got 2nd place.  I don’t know if I have seen a bigger grin.  The above picture is Henry in blue.  He ended up getting 1st place in Sparring.  Pretty proud of my little guy.  

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Greta is in blue.  Wow look how high her leg is on this head kick.  She amazes me everyday with what she can do.  She ended up getting 2nd in Sparring.  She did great and is learning the higher she gets the competition gets harder also.  

As much as kids can drive us nuts and mess our house up to the point of the Horder producers come knocking they are amazing.  They are amazing of what they can accomplish.  When Greta was little she couldn’t walk or even balance on her own.  She had the littlest little foot braces and PT.  There was a time when the therapist wasn’t sure she would ever walk normally.  Now she is a 2nd degree jr black belt.  I am amazed when I think back at that time.  Henry couldn’t enter a room with people in it without a complete meltdown.  I thought of both of these things as we were driving out to South Dakota this weekend for both of our children to compete in a physical sport that will be loud, with a lot of people.  God works miracles and I have two of them.  

Who am I…according to a quiz

If you don’t live under a rock and visit Facebook with any regularity you have seen quiz after quiz lately.  I have fun doing these quizzes and then having my husband do these quizzes and laughing about our results.

If I were to live my life by these quizzes I need to make a lot of changes, I am doing so many things wrong.  First I live in the wrong state.  As we have 1 degree right now with blowing snow I have a hard time debating this quiz.  One quiz I took said I should be living in the city of Portland.  My husband also got this result so maybe it is the correct answer.  I sure could get out of this horrible cold tundra.  I usually love Minnesota but right now it is getting me a little down.  I also got a quiz that said I should live in Kansas.  That wouldn’t be to bad.  Middle of the country and looks a lot like here.  Something to think of if life here gets too horrible.  I am sure these short quizzes with pick which song you like best knows the best for me.  Does the sarcasm come through.

Next I am a child of the 60’s according to one quiz.  I am going to agree with this one.  I come off as very conservative but if I could let some of this shyness go yes a child of the 60’s would be it.  I love the music of that era and the free-ness of it also.  I love the message of love yourself and others no matter who they are.  Isn’t that what we are called to do? Love our neighbors.  So I will play my 60’s music and teach my daughter how to make simple long hippie skirts like I did in college and try to pass it on to someone.  She might be a hard nut to crack.  Been around her dad, love him dearly, to long.  He is NOT a 60’s child at all.

Next is my career.  I should think long and hard about these results.  I was told I should be a writer.  I like that idea and when I was very young I wanted to write for a newspaper when I became an adult so again not so far off.  I went to college for Communicative Disorders and psychology.  I then worked at a maximum security prison for ten years before moving to the prairie.  I have done little jobs here and there but the main one is being a substitute teacher.  I enjoy it and I like seeing the kids grow and mature, well some of them.  I do want more and I think that is normal to want more.  I have thought about trying to do something in my field without getting that masters degree.  I have thought about getting a masters and I have thought about writing for a small town newspaper just like when I was a young girl.  So many question come up when taking a simple Facebook quiz.

The last one I am going to touch on is a quiz I had our whole family take this weekend.  It was what side of the brain are you?  Are you a left brain thinker so more logical and thought out or right brain which is spontaneous and creative.  I have this in the bag I thought I am the right brain.  I love trying to be crafty and create something.  Was I wrong!!! I got 91% left brain.  For some reason this crushed me.  Am I not creative? I am not spontaneous at all?  My husband got 50-50 which I thought was a joke.  He is not creative at all (I say that in love).  My daughter and son were also almost equal but with more going to the right brain side.  Wow these results really bothered me.  Was I so order driven and logical?  We talked about these results all weekend and I think they were correct.  I am left brain.  I love searching Pinterest for craft ideas.  The thing I noticed is I look at a craft and in my head it is what do I need, how do I set this up, when is the best time to try this.  Holy cow I think of order and logic in terms of creating, not just create.  Any health crisis that has come to my family I do more research then the FBI.  Any school meeting, IEP meeting etc…I seem to almost know more about the subject then the other members present.  I crave knowledge and information.  I research something every single day.  I think having 91% left brain is an OK thing.  We need all kinds to make the world go round.

Now do I believe that a simple quiz on Facebook can tell me about my life and how to live my life?  Probably not but it sure makes you think about the decisions I have made and my future that has not been written yet.

ADVOCATE

advocate

noun |ˈadvəkit|

a person who publicly supports or recommends a particular cause or policy : he was an untiring advocate of economic reform.

• a person who pleads on someone else’s behalf : care managers can become advocates for their clients.

• a pleader in a court of law; a lawyer : Marshall was a skilled advocate but a mediocre judge.

verb |-ˌkāt| [ trans. ]

publicly recommend or support :

Advocate it is a word that I hear a lot and have my whole life. We should be an advocate for others and advocates for the weak, advocates for our animals. It is a word that can bring people together and can cause tempers to flare and tear people apart.

When in high school and college I was a member of the Sierra Club and PETA. I was an advocate for nature and to animals. As I grew older my heart didn’t turn my back on those items but my life changed directions. I became an advocate for my family and for my children. Just to have the best shot in life in general. I became an advocate for kids with Sensory Processing Disorder and Autism.

When my son was little he was very sick. We had him to the doctor and ER all the time. He would spike 105 degree fevers at least once to twice a month. I tried with our local doctors to do something and finally an ER doctor said to us, you need to be an ADVOCATE for your son. You need to push to get him the help he needs so this can stop. I stepped up to the plate and pushed every button and put my foot into every door I could to get him the health care he needed. I was his advocate and still am. I am the one that goes to the school, meets with the doctors and therapist. I am the one sitting in his IEP meetings I am his ADVOCATE and his mother.

My question comes to why is it hard to be an ADVOCATE for yourself. There are times in everyones life when something could be done to make something a little easier. In my experiences of life asking for yourself is hard. It is hard to step up and say I need this or could this be done for me. I have run into some of those roadblocks recently and my husband just says, “Stand up for yourself and say what you need.” That statement is so much easier said than done, at least for me. This needs to be my resolution for my life. As much as I am an advocate for my family and what needs they may have I need to turn the mirror around and ADVOCATE for myself also. I need to let my wall down and when I do need extra clarification or something written down I will ask for that not smile and pretend I heard what was said. I will not be ashamed to say “I am hard of hearing can you please repeat that or rephrase that” I will ask for what is right and fair. It sure won’t be easy for me to do but I will try.

If no one is going to do it for you, you need to do it for ourselves. We all are human and we all deserve to have the best life can offer. A person has to have a purpose. We need to be an advocate for someone or something. Pick a cause something that is near and dear to your heart. Be an ADVOCATE.

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Birthday Party Fun

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My niece had a birthday this weekend so it is a perfect opportunity to travel to see my family.  Birthday’s are always special and fun to observe.  Even more fun when the birthday girl is a smiley, loving now 5 year old little girl.  Little Nora Mae is just a doll and I feel very honored to be her auntie Sara.  

We left to travel to the other side of the state.  I never thought going to the cities would be such a trek.  Now living 3 hours west of the cities it is an event to see large building and multi-lanes of traffic.  Growing up I could get to St Paul in under 20 minutes now it is like traveling to another world.  I love both places where we live, and the cities.  I love the cities for the hustle and bustle.  The variety of things to do and see and experience.  Everytime we enter the cities I feel this twinge of I wish we still lived here.  The kids eyes are always huge with everything from lights, buildings, cars on both sides of us and the list goes on and on.  The kids are rural and they are raised that way.  We live in a small town and by the end of a couple days in the urban setting we are ready to come home. There is something I love about a small town where you know everyone and they know you.  You wave to a passing car, you run into your friends at the drugstore or grocery store.  School is a smaller setting and the kids know everyone in their class and it just is a great place to grow up.  I guess there are pro’s and con’s to each so I am lucky that I have family living in the one so we have a good excuse to experience both.  

We took advantage of being in a metro area and did a little shopping and out for a meal.  Need to pick a restaurant we don’t have near home, and of course visiting with family and a birthday party.  

I don’t get to see my niece and nephew enough so every time I see them they are a little taller and a little more fun.  The kids had so much fun playing and chasing each other and spilling 2000 legos onto the floor.  They laughed and hugged and talked how they loved each other it was sweet and fun to see.  

The adults we had fun also.  My sister is a great hostess, she has a knack to entertain and she does it well.  My brother in law is a great guy, great sense of humor and a great host.  He hooked me up with his private stash of Captain Morgans and an Alabama Slammer drink he had made.  Just took a little bit of the shyness out of me and I was able to laugh and joke with my sister and her friends.  I was thinking later about my sister and her friends I remember when they were little jr high girls and so annoying to be around and now we are all mom’s and more on that level playing field when age no longer matters.  So instead of watching my sister and her friend perform dances to Hanson in my dorm room, I get to watch them be silly interacting with their kids. 

A fun weekend away, a time of family and friends, a time to celebrate birth.  Hope you all had some joy in your weekend.  

Valentines Week

It is fast approaching the day where we will all see pink and red hearts painted across the sky.  Well maybe that is a little dramatic but it seems like it.  I don’t know why but I have never been the lover of this day on the 14th of February.  I think I did as a child making a card box and having our party and passing out the little valentines to each of our classmates was fun but as I grew older the excitement fizzled.  Now I have loves of my life.  I love my husband and I adore my children but I think I can say and express I love you everyday with them.  I don’t need a special day to show them I love them. 

I have a fond memory of Valentines day when in college.  I was away to college in New Mexico and a couple friends and I decided to take a day and make homemade cards for our families and loved ones.  That was so fun we made hearts and took paper lace and made stacks of cards.  This is what the day should be to us every year in my opinion.  A want to show love and affection, not a deadline to get your card and buy buy buy and get caught up in the consumerism of the world.  I made cards for whom I loved.  Maybe my dislike started during the 10 years I worked at a prison.  Do you know how much mail can come through a maximum security prison at Valentines day….LOTS.  The girlfriends send those big cards, you know the ones that are as large a a child.  Then they proceed to pour an entire bottle of perfume on the card and send it in with the pictures no one should be taking to their man.  I am sorry that again wrong meaning of Valentines day. 

My husband and I already told each other that we love each other and there will be no gift buying this year.  With a totaled car last week and some health challenges in the last year we have expressed we are here for the other person and will continue to be there for them.  Our children yes- I will probably get them some candy and a card.  It is fun for them on this day but I hope they know everyday I am proud of them and love them to the moon and back. 

So we still need to make a valentine box for our son to take to school.  He wants one to look like a welder.  We need to get the cards and have him write his name on them.  That will be enough tears to last me a month, he is already whining about writing his name.  My daughter is just having a movie party without the cards.  It just cuts down on the drama in the class, I can see that. 

So Happy Valentines Week to you all.  I hope you have a wonderful day that you can tell people you love that you love and appreciate all they do in your life.  I will continue to kiss my kids goodnight and when I take my kids to school I always tell Greta I love her and Henry and I do the ASL sign for I love you to each other.  It is just our thing. 

Those that don’t have that significant other make sure you tell a co-worker, a parent, a friend or the cashier at the coffee shop that you thank them for being special in your life.  That is what the day means to me, a reminder that we are loved and we are called to love each other. 

Small Victories

When you have a child that has SPD, Sensory Processing Disorder, you learn to look at the world a different way.  My son Henry has SPD.  We are making great strides in some areas, and there are other areas which are a battle for him which makes a battle for the family.  

To have a child that screams like he is getting beat when water from a shower or the wind hits him in the face.  These are two things that hurt him physically to the core.  I get frustrated over this water thing.  Here is my son that will jump off the diving board with no assistance in 9 feet of water over and over and over but hearing the shower running brings on a full panic attack with hives.  Food is our big stumbling block in our home.  Everything is yucky, everything smells yucky and most of the times my son won’t even be in the kitchen with us when we eat.  I feel so bad for him and I know the smell of bread, or a roast makes him feel physically ill.  Taco’s are his favorite all around.  He loves taco meat and he loves salsa will eat it by the gallon.  Taco night is a great night in our house.  No gagging and no crying.  My son also craves sensory input.  What is that you ask? He will bounce of the couch, crash into walls, crash into me- anything to get that deep pressure input his body is craving.  He loves to spin and spin and spin till his poor mother is feeling like she just got off a tilt a whirl ride.  He will hit his forehead with his hand, or a toy, or even his taekwondo belt.  He is craving that pressure.  

With the sensory challenges we have in our home last night was a night of small victories.  It was just Henry and mom last night and his hair was getting a little unruly.  It actually looked like he was growing horns on the top of his head.  Not a good look.  Now cutting hair is on the same order as a shower.  We really can’t go to a shop to have it done it takes to many people to calm him down and it is just to much on my nerves also.  So I cut his hair at home.  This is usually my husband holding Henry and Greta trying to calm him down as I quickly use the clippers to cut his hair.  Last night I got the crazy idea I would do this alone.  So Henry agreed and he sat so good and he listened to Frozen music on his iPod.  He did WONDERFUL.  His haircut looks good and there wasn’t one tear shed by either of us!!!  I then explained I needed to get the hair off his neck and back but I would have him stand in the tub and I would just pour the water on him.  That got a few tears while doing it but no major meltdown.  We ended up celebrating by a great big bubble bath with Frozen music blaring through the house.  He was happy, clean and a new haircut.  Now that is major success in my book. 

When you have a child that looks at the world through different eyes you need to train your brain and eyes to look to see things a little different also.  It might not make sense to you, a neighbor or the woman casting a frown your way at the store but it is your boy and you will protect him and nurture him anyway you know how.  

A day to forget

Yesterday is a day I would really like to forget.  It started like any ordinary day but by 8am it was drastically different.  I dropped the kids off at school got all of 3 blocks or so and I came up to an intersection in town.  It is an ordinary intersection no stop signs, no yield signs you just need to be watching and aware.  I was approaching the intersection when I saw another vehicle just starting to go through.  I applied the brakes like I always would but I wasn’t slowing down.  I was on pure ice I then slammed the brake nope it wasn’t going to help.  I ended up crashing into the back wheel and door of this poor lady in her vehicle.  I then spun and landed in a waist high snow bank.

I ended up hitting my head pretty bad on what I am not sure.  I don’t know if it was the steering wheel, the windshield or the visor which was down at this point.  This was the first accident of any kind I have ever been in and I was terrified and my head was swelling.  Luckily the individual following me was on the ambulance crew and he called it in right away and was able to tend to both drivers.  I was only met with kindness and concern by the town police officer, the county sheriff and the ambulance crew.  I had to go to the ambulance to get checked out that was another new experience.  I was scared in the ambulance because I had a hard time hearing anything they were saying to me.  Yes I am hard of hearing but this was different it was very muffled much more than normal.  When I told them they thought because of the blow to my head and my blood pressure was very high.  There was so many things running through my head.  How is the car, will they get a hold of my husband, what is wrong with my head, will my hearing come back at least to the level it was at?

I ended up going to the hospital where again everyone was so nice.  Once my blood pressure started to go down and I felt more calm my hearing ended up going back to the level I was used to.  My husband made it, my car was towed my questions were being answered.  Luckily no concussion but a good goose egg and it is day 2 now and it is SO tender to the touch.

The outpouring of love and concern has humbled me.  From calls from my mom and mother in law, texts from friends, and messages on social media.  I sure felt and feel loved.  A friend was over within an hour to check on me and she checked on me last night also.  A friend brought us lunch today just so nice.  A call came from New York and Illinois when friends there had heard. Thank you to everyone.

I still am worried about my wonderful vehicle.  I don’t know what will happen with it till next week.  It is a day I hope to forget but I am afraid I won’t