Saturday, March 31, 2012

Jeremiah turns 2!

Well- this is obviously a little late.  But better late than never.

My sweet, curly haired blondy turned 2 last Sunday. (March 25th) It's hard to believe- life goes by in a flash. 

Hi Mommy- I love you!

"Happy Birthday to you..."  The candles managed to stay lit despite the wind. 

Grandpa and cousin Sophia feeding Jeremiah his birthday cake.  Teamwork.

Gotta hand it to the man- he might be old, but he can still try to stand on his head! 

Jeremiah had a great birthday party!  I'm so blessed that he came into our lives! 

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

MS updates FYI

I do not know what causes MS.  My Neurologist doesn't know what causes MS.  One thing that can be agreed upon is it is a very strange disease, and affects all people who have it in vastly different and strange ways.
As many of you know I was diagnosed with MS in November 2010.  Really, my Doc has been calling it "nonspecific demylenation disease, probable MS"  But he leans 99% in the direction of MS.  There is no "test" to determine if you have it.  If you get lesions on your brain, and they get worse over time, and you have odd neurological symptoms that can't be explained by some other cause; it's probably MS.  So that is where I have been for the last year and a half.

Every time I have an MRI, there are slight changes in my brain, new lesions have appeared, but are small.  (go figure- I have 5 kids.  I'm surprised my brain hasn't turned to mush)   Thankfully these changes haven't been huge, because if they were, that would mean my disease is progressing rapidly and I would have to take serious meds.  I haven't had to have an infusion of Solu-medrol since last spring)  This is a blessing because high dose liquid steroid being injected into your veins over the course of 5 days is no fun, no fun at all. 

I write this post because recently I have heard learned that a few more people I know have been diagnosed with MS.  Which leaves me to wonder some things. 

Is MS becoming more prevalent or, is a clearer diagnosis being made because of technology?  Who knows...

When I was first diagnosed and was without any treatment, I was miserable!  I could hardly walk, I stumbled around.  I fell almost every day, usually in the shower because I had NO balance when I closed my eyes.  It was really scary.  I felt like I was groping around in darkness.  I sought answers, but there were none to be found.  My legs and feet burned like they were on fire, they felt like they had needles in them, and they were numb- all at the same time.  Odd, I know.  I was also very tired, like pregnant tired.  If you're a man, you can't relate.  If you're a woman, you know exactly what I mean.  My face was numb, my tongue was numb, I had times when I couldn't see out of my right eye.  I was all around bad off. 

Sorry if I'm giving you a sob story, I don't mean to.  I became very depressed.  I am not a naturally depressed person, so this was a big change for me.  I began to be consumed with MS and how it was taking over my body.  I worried constantly about the kids- and being in a wheel chair, or having to use a walker- or not living a 'normal' life, etc... the list went on.

Stress is a huge factor with MS, it is unclear why.  So we decided to send the kids to private school rather than the homeschool/charter mix we had been doing.  I started eating better.  I never really ate poorly, but I started incorporating more whole foods into my diet.  I tried numerous medications to alleviate the burning/tingling/numb symptoms- none of them worked.  Josh even researched medical marijuana.  He was desperate to find me some relief.  (I know, I know- many of you might guffaw at such a thing, but you don't understand the pain)  No, I am not using medical marijuana! 
Just to be clear :) 

I had been a runner before MS, but after MS took over I could hardly walk- let alone run! Now, not only was I dealing with this issue, I didn't have my outlet of running, which I loved so much. 

Okay- this is getting too long and boring.  I'll wrap it up.  I'm doing much better. Last May I started taking an anti-seizure medication which my neurologist recommended. (Josh made me go to the dr. because I fell when we were visiting his grandparents and it left a knot on my head the size of an egg) I don't know why it works- but it does.  This medication blocks neurological impulses...I guess that's why it works!  I still don't have feeling in my feet or ankles, and really hot water feels cold to me,  but I no longer fall all of the time because I have better balance.  ( I think b/c of the medication) I joined the YMCA because I was afraid to run on the road (I might have gotten hit by a car with all of stumbling around!)  I just couldn't sit around and let MS destroy me.  I got stronger, I commited to working out at least 3 times per week. 

November of 2011, Josh and I ran a half marathon, I am working out about 4 or 5 times per week, and we plan on running the Mini Marathon in May. I always feel like I have the flu. I am still fearful, but I will continue pressing on.  I don't think I'll ever regain what I've lost.  It feels as if my legs and feet are always waking up from an epidural (again- if you've never given birth & had an epidural you can't relate) it's kind of like the feeling you have when you wake up in the middle of night and realize you can't feel your arm because you've been sleeping on it in a strange way.  You frantically try to wake it up in your sleepy stupor- only mine won't wake up. 

I have learned to run this way though.  I just count it out- like I'm in boot camp or something.  One-two-three-four..That way I don't lose step & don't stumble.  I think I count more than I'd like to admit- but hey, at least I'm not laying on the couch watching soap operas and complaining about my MS.

But I do realize there might come a time in my life when I will not be able to walk on my own.  And that is very scary. But for now, I will continue to live my life- and thank God for the tremendous blessings that He has given me. 

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Found! Signs of Spring

I'm always having camera troubles.  I think it's because I take lots of pictures, then never do anything with them.  bad mom.  I should immediately develop each picture I take- unless I don't like the picture, then I should delete it from my card.  Not so.  I have about 900 pictures on my camera right now.  Some have actually been developed....most have not.  I need to clean this mess up.  Maybe I'll work on that later. 

Hey, look at me.  I'm a sweet little strawberry blossom.  I'm glad you weeded me, I was being chocked by those other guys...
HA HA HA HA HA you little strawberries, we'll get you.  We might look like pretty flowers, but we're not.  We'll choke the life out of you, suck away your precious nutrients until you shrivel into nothingness.
Nothing like a the sight of a Red bud tree to lift my spirits. 
But what is that green I see in the distance by the barn...hmmm...
REMEMBER US? We are feeling quite neglected out here next to the barn. At least the kids pick us when they're out here playing house or farm. Poor Asparagus. I really should not neglect you any longer. I will try harder to be a better gardener
Can't wait for this lilac to open up.  I love how it's right next to the swing, I will be able to just sit and relax.  Or the swing will turn into an amusement park ride, and Christian & Isaac will wildly push me and Jeremiah on it.  At least it will smell nice. 

A nice Spring walk, Jeremiah decided to try to wander into the wilderness.  Not so fast little guy!

Hey, Mom!  There is a stop sign here, so we better stop.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

March Madness!

Well- I'm not referring to basketball, but it has been crazy around here.

I took the boys for a walk & took some lovely pictures of spring, but they are nowhere to be found on my camera.  I'll have to resolve that issue later

Josh & I went down to stay at McCormick's this past weekend.  It was lovely.  We literally saw the forest come to life as the green leaves and magnificent buds sprang forth.  We decided to go for a 12.5 mile trail run.  Who knew Indiana was so hilly?

Elijah started baseball Monday.  They practice every night except Wed.  So-life is a little busy right now just with that.

I need to get the garden started.  I weeded my strawberries...hopefully the plants will survive.  They were completely taken over.  I still have a lot of weeding to do.  (I have pictures-somewhere on my camera!)

It feels like the middle of summer around here!  It's beautiful!  I love sunshine and warm weather. 

My baby is going to be 2 on Sunday...I just can't believe it.  He is so cute.

Gotta go get the kids from school now, until next time :)

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Trying to redeem myself

So I shared I bit too much info yesterday.  I will never share again about singing "Rock The Casbah"  How embarrassing.  More embarrassing that I know most of the words.  yikes.  Josh and I are so different that way.  He can't even hear the words to most songs, just the rhythm, beat...the words are like background noise to him.  I hear all of the words.  Opposites attract.  I could go into another singing shenanigan with that one- but I won't.  You should be thankful. 

We've been busy around here.  Josh is doing trim work, and being the perfectionist he is, it takes a lot of time.  I can wait.  I'd rather have it look nice.  I appreciate his attention to detail.  I have actually hung up a few pictures.  Not my favorite thing to do because Josh is a perfectionist and I'm afraid I won't hang the pictures with exact symmetry.  But, I was forced into action because I was tired of seeing all sorts of pictures piled up on the bookshelf.  I didn't just start pounding nails in the wall, I actually used some of my hidden away math skills and measured things out.   I also dusted the ceiling fans and light fixtures....and I made pizza dough.  (not like I'm bragging about my accomplishments or anything :)

Elijah had a speech meet and won a blue ribbon for an original speech.  It was a great speech about classical music, and how he can use it to glorify God.  He is a good boy.  He will be starting baseball soon...that will be a crazy schedule.  They practice every day after school!  It would be easier if school were closer, but that is the choice we've made, so we'll deal with it.  They go to such a good school, it's worth the extra time.

Abigail is going to her first "sleepover" with people other than family in a couple weeks.  She is 8.  I have been against sleepovers, but I trust the family and know she will not be exposed to things she should not be exposed to- so it will be okay.  She will also be participating in a Math Bee next month.  She and Josh have been working on some math skills together.  She'll do great, especially if Josh is helping her.

Isaac's teacher from school has been on leave b/c she had to have a kidney transplant!  oh my... when I went to eat lunch w/him the sub said if all kids were like Isaac, her job would be so easy!  I'm so blessed by my children.  When I hear things like that, I feel so proud of them.  Not like "I'm the best parent ever...look at how good my kids are!"  No- it's a joy to see that the Holy Spirit is working in their lives.  Isaac played his last basketball game of the season today.  He scored 3 goals, and was very sad to see the season end.  He loves basketball.

Christian is my buddy.  We play hi-ho cherrio and boggle jr.  just about every day.  He knows how to spell simple words and is writing pretty well.  He has his kindergarten testing next month.  I can't believe it!  He is getting so big- Jeremiah sure will miss him when he goes to school.  They are best friends.  He can't wait to play soccer in the fall, and hopes daddy will be his coach. 

It sounds like I'm writing a Christmas letter or something....just trying to keep everyone updated on what's going on.  When you have 5 kids, there is usually a lot going on. baby is going to be 2 on the 25th of this month.  His curly blonde locks are getting curlier and longer.  I fear I shall have to cut them soon.  I said I would cut his hair after he turned 2.  But now that the time is near, I don't think I can go through with it.  He talks a lot.  And he is a wild man!  He gets it from Christian.  He loves the moon.  We had leave the house at 6:30am the other day and the moon was still out.  We were traveling in the same direction as the moon.  He kept saying "look mommy moon....I catch it.  Get moon mommy, get moon."  If you could just hear his voice saying this, it might melt your heart.  He is so sweet. 

So I guess that sums it up.  I could go on more with the details of our lives, but I'm sure you're bored enough.  But at least I'm not talking about the Clash. 

Friday, March 9, 2012

this is NOT kosher

The CD player in my van is broken.  Well, not exactly.  It just doesn't like to eject CD's unless it's below freezing, thereby forcing me to listen to the same CD over and over and over again until it the temp drops below freezing again.  Then I must quickly eject the CD and put in a new one.  (if the van warms up, all is lost, and the CD will not come out) 

I am tired of the same old 5 songs (all of the others skip because the CD is so scratched up- yes I know I should be more high-tech, not relying on CD's of yester-year, but I am not)

Anyhow, this leaves me in a bind.  Silence is good sometimes.  But I like music. Most music played on the radio is not pleasing to my sensitive listening ears, so my choices are limited.  The Christian stations are okay- sometimes- but honestly I don't care for most of the songs.  I like NPR sometimes- but most of the time the things they talk about in their "news" stories is quite vulgar, and not good for my kids to listen to.  The "alternative rock" station is still playing the same songs that were popular when I was in high school.  Q95, well- I won't even go there.  Country stations...okay, but not really my style.  Radio Disney, not going there either.  It's an "encourage children to be promiscuous" propaganda station.   But that's just my opinion.

So I'm stuck.  And I actually found myself singing "Rock the Casbah" yesterday as I was flipping through the radio stations.  Something is terribly wrong.  I need to get this CD problem resolved.  

I'm sure you found this post to be rather enlightening.   I really need to come up with better things to be concerned with.  Sharia don't like it.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

I am...

There are a lot of things I could do.
There are a lot of things I should do.
There are a lot of things I do...
There are a lot of things I really do

But what should I do?
or be doing?

Sometimes I feel unappreciated.  I think it's easy as a stay at home wife and mother to feel that way.  People don't see the 'behind the scenes' activities.  I don't think most people know what I really do.  In a group of people, the first question asked is usually "So...what do you do?"  Often, I feel embarassed to say..."oh, I stay at home with my kids" 

I am not embarrassed by why do I feel so shameful when confronted with the question?  Sometimes when I hear this question, it's like I've heard the judge put down his javelin with my guilty verdict!  It's ridiculous. 

"Yes...I stay home with the kids..."  I stammer.

Not acceptable.    I should say YES I STAY HOME WITH THE KIDS!  And it should carry just as much weight as if I'd said I am a Neurosurgeon! 

Sadly, it does not. 

I am a good wife
I am a person to confide in
I am a taxi cab
I am a cook
I am a baker (yes, there is a difference)
I am a maid
I am a nurse
I am a psychiatrist
I am a therapist
I am a playmate
I am a teacher
I am a nanny
I am a worm discetor.  (I don't like this job)
I am a hairdresser
I am a friend

I am a child of God.   I forget that one sometimes.  (too often) and HE has created me to be just who I am. 

I am so blessed to be able to stay home with my kids.  I think I would have made a fine doctor.  Growing up, I wanted to be two things.  Either a mommy or a doctor.  (But at least now I'm pretty good at diagnosing my kids illnesses) 

I am happy with life, but I do feel devalued at times.  I could have been... But I am.  I am the mother of 5 of the most amazing kids you'll ever meet.  And they are going to grow up to be amazing adults.

Saturday, March 3, 2012


I have heard the phrase said before:
"The awful grace of God"

Does this mean awful, or does it mean awful.

I don't know. Either way, it scares me. 

I have been working on giving my kids grace.  This is hard because in my opinion, on any number of days, grace is not what I think they deserve. They deserve my righteous indignation. Right?

God is not lacking in administering his fair share of righteous indignation, so why should I be?

Well...I am not God. 

( a loud guffaw should follow)

no, really...I'm not.  but sometimes I play the part. Sorry to disappoint.

(does your computer ever sound like it's taking pictures of  I guess I need a new computer;  or I am really paranoid)

waaaaaaay off subject. sorry.  I get off track sometimes.

Anyhow, back to grace.

I don't understand it, and I don't show it nearly enough; but it truly is the foundation of our faith. Isn't it?

Is it the foundation in your faith. And what does it mean?  What does it mean to you? I'd like to know.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

these are the days of our lives...

The mountain of laundry is, well...mounting.  I shall fold it when it's all dry.

I bought various cheeses from Marsh today.  the bag failed to make it home with me.  do I go back to reclaim my bag?  of course.  do I have the time?  of course not.

The mini marathon is creeping up on me, and I haven't run over 6 miles in months, let alone 13.1...ughh... I did run 2 miles and swam a mile today, so that is something, just not enough.  There wasn't enough time to do more.

You should see my storage room- no, wait- you shouldn't.  it's ridiculous

I did play lego's today.  And we ate lunch with Isaac.  When we returned from lunch I made Italian Chicken, read a story to my little guys, changed the diaper that came back from the grave, laid Jeremiah down, made Snickerdoodles & smoothies with Christian, and got the kids lunch's started for tomorrow.

I should be folding the laundry, but like I said, it's not all dry.

And I could be organizing the storage room.  But that is something that needs an entire day dedicated to it.  If not more. 

Life goes by so quickly.  I am blessed to be a stay at home mom- but it amazes me sometimes how much I can't get done in a day.  I guess I better get off the computer and run up to Marsh before I pick the kids up from school and try to reclaim my cheese.  I lost my receipt.  (of course)  I think I threw it away with that awful diaper.  And I am not digging through the trash for that.

Have a blessed day :)