Sunday, December 28, 2014

Leading to Christmas

Christmas is a wonderful time.  I've had many, many insights this Christmas season, but finding the time to write them down has been difficult.  So, I'll give it a try now.

We decorated the Sunday after Thanksgiving because I didn't need to teach that day. In my head, I envisioned happiness and just a good time.  Needing an attendant to help you decorate and trying to make it a joyful experience isn't as easy as it sounds. Personalities clash and ideas do not always mesh making me the peace maker. I just want to tell my cerebral palsy to go away and I can handle it on my own.  However, I'm very grateful to have the help.

After getting through decorating, the peace came back as we made chocolate peanut butter cupcakes. It was a recipe that my attendant was happy to share and help Laura to do. 

The Elf on the Shelf has been a pleasant surprise. We have resisted getting one through the years because our daughter didn't want one and we thought it was pretty expensive. But this year she wanted one and we succumbed.

I must admit, at first, the idea of him was moving each night was a bit stressful. It was fun though to search for him.  The routine of finding him each morning gave my daughter something to look forward to before school.  Our elf is named Jack.  Now he is back at the North Pole until next December.

We decided to get a real tree.  I've always been afraid of them burning our house down so resisted. In the twelve years living here, I always had an artificial tree. Jeff and I picked up Laura from school one day as a surprise. The first place we went seemed overly expensive. The second place was up there in price but we found the perfect tree. Plus I was cold and didn't want to look anymore places.  We definitely had fun though and no pressure.  Laura enjoyed it very much.

Again I found myself feeling badly that I couldn't decorate the tree on my own with the kids. Jeff isn't as enthusiastic with tree decorating as he is about outside. However, one of my friend's came over and helped me and Laura. It ended up being a really fun time and her daughter slept over which thrilled Laura.

We did Breakfast with Santa at my church in early December. Jason wasn't crazy about Santa, but we had fun and got some great pictures. Jeff's mom took both Jason and Laura to a Christmas party. They had a terrific time and definitely was in the Christmas spirit.

What I'll miss the most this Christmas season is the mornings leading up to Christmas. Laura updated all of our countdown calendars and would look for Jack.  Then we would talk about Christmas vacation, Christmas season and all the enjoyment.   I'll also miss Jason saying, "mom, look!!" when driving around looking at Christmas lights.

I also loved when Laura made very thoughtful homemade gifts to give family.  Mine was a little white cardboard box. In it was a colorful paper that said, " this is the kissing box." Written on the bottom of the box said "mwaah." She explained that whenever I'm down, look in the box and I get a kiss from her.

She also wrote Jeff a very encouraging letter about nursing school.  She said that she was proud of him. Very sweet.

My mom and sister took Laura go Hershey Park candy cane lights. I opted out due to cold but they had an excellent time.

Jeff, Laura, Jason and I went out to eat and walked around just for fun.  We all had a great time and ran into an old friend.  We enjoyed the decorations, music and energy in the air.

All this led up to the big Christmas Day!

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Magical Christmas Time

Last week I freaked out a little bit. I felt like time was slipping away between school, Jeff's school, teaching and the household chores. So, I decided to go full steam ahead and make my own plans to get it done.

Earlier that week Laura said she wanted to see the Nutcracker that her school was performing. I had no idea she wanted to go and scrambled to see if I could get tickets. The performance was Friday and Saturday but Friday worked better with our plans. I emailed the director and yes I was able to score two tickets.

Then I knew we needed to get a Christmas tree. Every year we set up our artificial tree usually the first week of December.  I felt very behind because we waited to get our first real tree.  So, Jeff and I picked up Laura when she was finished school and got our tree.  The first place we went seemed very expensive.  The second place had our perfect tree, and even though cold, we all had a fun experience.

Friday came and it was my Dad's birthday. My dad and I are very close and similar. I wanted to incorporate his birthday into my plans. Are you ready to hear about our Friday? My attendant, Jason and I went shopping during the day. Jason was so much fun and no issues. We even ate lunch out and he did amazing. 

At the store, I picked up dinner and cake for the birthday celebration. When we got home, we organized what I bought and cleaned.  My dad enjoyed dinner, cake and presents. Then Laura and I were off to the Nutcracker!

Saturday we decorated the tree and had a sleepover with Laura's friend. Laura had a ball and they were very behaved. They actually were quiet when we asked them to!

Monday, December 8, 2014

The joys of life

Have I mentioned how much I love teaching? Yes, I do. Each week I have the opportunity to teach first grade PREP (Catholic education.) It's so much fun and rewarding when you make something make sense to them and they are excited to learn. 

I do have my certification in special education. Lately, I've been struggling if I made the right choice in careers.  Getting a teaching job has been difficult due to disability discrimination and then I had my daughter. When I planned on trying again when she started kindergarten, I found out I was pregnant with my son.

I was contemplating getting a degree in some other field that would almost gaurentee me a job.  Teaching is what I always loved and seeked to do.  Today when I was teaching it confirmed all of my feelings.

After teaching, we went to breakfast with Santa at my church.  Laura liked it a lot but Jason wanted nothing to do with him. Nevertheless, we did get some great pictures that we will cherish.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

So many things happening

I know we always seem like we are up to something, and we usually are.  We just finished up about a week long break and now slowly getting everything back in order.  It's always sad when break ends especially after the school bus pulls away with my daughter and my husband kisses me good bye as he leaves for school. Some people can't wait until their family leaves, I happen to dread it.

However, it's nice to spend one on one time with my little man, Jason. He is now 21 months old and never ceases to put a smile on your face. Jason loved having his daddy and sister around. He started saying, "Daddy!" He is so full if enthusiasm to tell you things but the words get jumbled.  Jason is more of a phrase guy instead of single words. The new phrases are, "Here it is," "There it is," "thank You" and of course "see ya later!"

My favorite is his nonverbal way of saying he loves you. He will come over and put his head on your shoulder, lap or leg.  Jason also will wave for me to come.  He will yell "Mom" and look back waving his fingers for me to follow. Jason tells you to look at things too.

Laura is also doing remarkable things. Her report card was all A's and the comments were absolutely mind blowing. All the teachers love her in class, she helps her classmates, respects the teacher, helps clean the class and enthusiastic for learning. A week before Thanksgiving, she was given the Respect award from her teacher.  Luckily, parents are invited and encouraged to attend. I never miss it.

In fact, I was later than I usually am, but still on time. When she saw me, her entire face lit up like a Christmas angel. My eyes actually filled with tears to see how happy I made her just by being there.

Laura is in second grade but now reading at a third and fourth grade level. At night, she reads over an hour before falling asleep. She told me this morning that she was almost out of chapter books so I picked three up at the library. I wonder how long it'll take her. Jason didn't make it easy to look. He wanted me to follow him and look at everything in the room.

During break, Jeff and I got to spend time together as well. We went to the movies, shopping, and just out together. He was happy to pass level one in nursing. Now he is into level two so we will see how that goes. 

I'm just trying to keep all happy and healthy plus keep a clean, organized house. There are times I feel lost in all the chaos and unsure my role exactly for who and what.  It's funny but I'm definitely a full time mommy and wife but sometimes I have that career itch. Am I a writer, teacher, speaker? I do a little bit of all three but none to the level I feel I should be at. I want to write everyday, send letters to talk and so on. But there's not enough time in the day plus relax too.  It's just a weird limbo type feeling. 

I felt very happy today that at the library someone asked me for my business card because she wanted me to speak at a school.  Luckily, I had them tucked away in my bag along with diapers and snacks for the kids.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Teddy bear project

I would like to introduce to Project Teddy Bear for Kids.  We collect brand new teddy bears for children in need because every child has the right to have a teddy bear of their own.  In a day where child abuse, poverty and sickness among children are growing fast, Project Teddy Bear for Kids would like to bring a little joy into their lives.

If interested in helping us out, here are some things you can do.  You can go to our site, Project Teddy Bear for Kids at and donate for us to purchase teddy bears.  You can email at if you would like to send a teddy bear.  Also, you could spread our mission to your community to help spread our mission. 

Project Teddy Bear for Kids was established by a mother who is determined to help children in any small way. Her second grader also excitedly wants to help other children in the community. Teddy bears provide children a sense of ownership in a crazy world, comfort, encourage imagination and brings some peace.

So, please think about helping Project Teddy Bear for Kids help children in our community. By one teddy bear at a time, we can help put a smile on a face of a child!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

13 ways to be kind to your spouse

Being kind to your spouse is so important especially with couples who have been married for awhile.  Kindness brings feelings of love and friendship. It is sad to say that many couples lose the simple yet essential step of being kind to one another.

1. Purchase or make your spouse a little gift as a surprise.  Tell them they deserve it since they are such a good spouse to you.
2. Do an extra chore that they usually do. Don't complain at all about doing it.
3. Speaking about complaining-don't complain to your spouse about them. And do not talk bad about them.  Try to look at their good points and shrug off the bad. (Unless abuse is in the relationship then try to find help to get out of the situation.) 
4. Cook an extra special dinner for them.
5. Kiss daily and often – this goes for intimacy too. That highly attractive person that you fell in love with still exists.
6. Listen to each other. If he or she wants to talk about their day, let them. Listen and ask questions.
7. Make time for each other. Children are extremely important but so is your marriage. Commit to have some one on one time together at the end of the day.
8. Be good and kind to your children. There is nothing more appealing than knowing that your husband or wife are amazing parents.
9. Don't fight too much. Every couple has a healthy disagreement here and there. However, daily arguments are way too much. It's not good for you, them or any children involved. It takes two to fight.  If you don't like something, figure out how important is it to you and your family.
10. Go out together for something fun once a week. It can be a walk, movie, dinner or just window shop. Ditch the sweats and try to look good for each other.
11. Stay committed to your spouse. Are you spending too much time on your phone? Are you having emotional connections with those other than your spouse? Are you doing things that you need to hide from your spouse? Think about it and if you're making the best choices for the marriage.
12. In the morning, ditch looking at facebook first thing and hug your spouse.  You can talk or simply connect physically before starting a day apart.
13. Dance in the living room together just for fun!

Kindness week

Kindness week is November 10-November 15 and kindness day is November 13.  Kindness is a forgotten action to several of us.  It's not intentional for the general public to be unkind, but the busy life we lead doesn't help.  We need to remember to be kind.

Everyday this week, come back to read another thirteen ways to be kind article.  Hopefully, it will inspire kindness.  Random acts of kindness aren't that hard to figure out or do.  You might be doing them and not even realize it.

Remember to spread the kindness all week and especially on November 13!

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Never forget Scotty

Forgive me if this post is a rambling string of thoughts. My blog is where I can get my feelings out and maybe make sense. I, and thousands of people, are struggling to deal with the death of Scotty.  It's so difficult to move past it in your consciousness because it's beyond terrible for any mind.

Having a son only about two years younger than Scotty makes the impact very big. Each time Jason cries or seems uncomfortable lately, my mind wanders to the poor little boy.  My husband and I can't endure our children crying a few minutes.  The tears he must've shed makes my stomach ache.  

I dont think God wired our souls to deal with this kind of torture. There is not any justification because it was his own parent that allowed it to happen. We can't blame it on some mad man or a crazy person. Child abuse, unfortunately, happens but not this degree and sickness.  I'm glad we don't understand it.

I know Scotty went straight into God's hands.  I hope God made the memories of his short (probably felt like forever) life disappear. I pray deeply for his siblings that survived.  I'm so thankful that they are out of the abuse but feel so bad for memories and the loss of their brother.

I'm not sure if the pain of this will ever go away.  We shouldn't forget because to be loving human beings, we need to feel for others.  So don't feel bad for feeling sad for Scotty and thinking about him.  We are human and loving others is our wiring. 

Without even knowing Scotty, he taught us big lessons.  Abuse is real and needs to be addressed if suspected or witnessed.  Children are innocent beings who need to be loved and cherished. Not harmed because they don't behave in that exact moment.  And most of all, Scotty taught the world that it is ok to weep for others.  We all need to love and look out for others more.  

Never forget Scotty and all the other children who need a super hero right this second. 

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

My 20 month old

Jason is my active and funny 20 month old.  He's learning at a rapid pace and understands way more than what he says.  Anytime there is any music, he will dance.  No matter what music or where we are.  

You simply can't be in a bad mood when you are around Jason.  He greets you in the morning with a, "Hi!"  He always has a smile on his face.  Jason enjoys making you laugh and happy as well.  Whenever Laura is upset, he will go over and put his head on her lap or do a dance to make her happy.

His words are still limited but everyone tells me it's normal. Laura was just very articulate at a young age.  His favorite words are "mom," "bus" and "see ha later!"  He points out every bus and yells, "Mom, look!!!"  Jason babbles a lot and I still would love a baby translator to know what he's saying. 

I can usually figure out what he wants to say by intuition and just his sounds plus movements. Today he wanted to go outside and he pointed at the door and said my name.  I always prompt him with the words so he knows what to say.

I notice that he is getting less shy of strangers.  He was a fireman for Halloween and he actually would pick out candy. Plus he would say, "see ya later!"  Unfortunately, Jason really doesn't like medical people and will cry at the sight of anyone in medical clothing. Even the veterinarian. 

Jason's favorite toys now are an old ipad that his grandfather gave him, cars, trucks and leggos.  He knows pretty well how to operate an iPad. It cracks us up.  All his apps are music and educational based. He also loves playing outside, going for walks and go anywhere.  Jason loves shower time and never fusses with it.

He is still my little helper when giving me a drink or puts food in my mouth. Here is to many more amazing months and years with our guy!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Vote in 2014

The Catholic Church cannot tell someone who to vote for.  However, they can tell you that it is important to vote with your conscious in mind. Thinking about how the vote will affect others and not just seeing it as a popularity contest is important to keep in mind.

In Pennsylvania, we are selecting a governor.   Tom Wolf says he's for education and children yet he is so pro abortion that he is against women being informed before they have an abortion. He doesn't want women to see an ultrasound. Obviously, not really a big child advocate if he's against their mother seeing their baby before consenting to kill him or her.

Tom Corbett believes women should have full knowledge before having an abortion.  That means the mother will be informed about the procedure, how it's done and the developmental stage that the baby is in at the time of the abortion.

Being Catholic, even Christian, means we need to try to make decisions that are in line with our values and morals. Is keeping women in the dark about abortion good for the woman or the baby? What could possibly be the harm in informing women on a very invasive procedure that kills their baby? 

Unfortunately, the answer often comes down to money. Politicians that often support abortion are being paid to do so.  Do you really think pro abortion candidates care if a woman gets informed before making one of the biggest decisions of her life?  Most likely not.  But they will never admit to it because they don't want to lose money.

Yes, there are so many other issues than abortion.  However, what is the most important? The decision of someone's life should be the highest issue on the table. Life is a basic right that we should all have, but to thousands a day, they aren't given a chance.

Here is a link to vote pro life if you choose to do so:

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Having a sick child can be scary

On Wednesday morning Laura told me she didn't feel good and wanted to stay home.  I did my normal mom questioning like, "are you sure you don't want to try it and you'll probably feel better as the day progresses?"  But Laura's voice sounded a bit hoarse and her head felt warm so I agreed with her. I gave her Tylenol and she went back to bed.

My day went on as normal with Jason and teaching.  I checked on Laura but often didn't want to wake her as much.  She ate soup for lunch and completed here homework.  Jeff came home and almost immediately took her temperature.  I felt horrible that it was 102.7! She hardly complained or acted like she had a fever.  Jeff took her to the doctor right away.

The doctor prescribed her antibiotics because it appeared to be strep.  He said he wouldn't know for sure for a few days but said she should miss school and take the medicine. We let her rest, treated the symptoms and I thought by Thursday she would be to herself almost anyway.

I was very wrong.  At 4am on Thursday morning, Laura frantically knocked on our bedroom door. I sat up like a bolt of lightning. My first thought was that she threw up.  No, she was having difficulty breathing!  She was hyperventilating and telling me she could hardly breathe.  Jeff got her asthma inhaler and it seemed to help some.  Then he took out his stethoscope and based on what he heard and what I heard, we knew it wasn't good and out of our skill set.

Laura looked at me with frantic fear in her eyes telling me she didn't want to die. To hear those words from your little girl was enough to kill me. But some inner strength keeps you from losing it in front of them.  I assured her she wasn't and Jeff took her.  She wanted me to go but I needed to stay with Jason.  I was cursing cerebral palsy like crazy.  If I could drive, I'd take her in a second.

Then they were gone.  I felt the world spinning.  Everything so fast but minutes so slow. I prayed every prayer in the book and even my own.  I just sat in the living room feeling scared and helpless.  The minutes ticked on slowly.

I heard the door open finałly and Laura walked in.  I've never been more happy to see her.  She was breathing normal.  Jeff explained that the place he wanted to take her was closed. Going to the ER made her more anxious and he decided not to agitate her and bring her back to me.  Her fever was back to 102.7.  Jeff gave her medicine and we got her all comfy in the recliner. I sat on the couch with a blanket.  Jeff had to get ready to go to school,but not until we saw her temp go down.

During the day Laura rested and I checked her temperature every hour or less. Jeff texted me throughout the day to check on her. My Dad sent her flowers and my friends sent tremendous support on Facebook. I still had to work (long story) but I was able to divide my time well. Her temperature hovered around 99.7 all day.  She refused to sleep until Jeff came home. She slept until 9pm!

Although our sleep was messed up, her feeling better, no fever and breathing better made all the difference.  She's feeling better today but it's lingering. She's going to try school tomorrow half day.

A sick child is so scary but keeping calm (at least on the outside) and intuition plus God will get you through.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Chocolate day

October 28 is national chocolate day! Chocolate is eaten all over the word in thousands of variations. Dark chocolate, white chocolate, and milk chocolate are all celebrated today.

On average, Americans consume about 12 pounds of chocolate in one year. Holidays are often celebrated with chocolate especially Valentine's Day, Easter and Halloween.  Chocolate can be found anywhere and in any combination.

To celebrate chocolate day, enjoy some chocolate during each meal. Chocolate covered bananas, chocolate milk, chocolate sauce, chocolate dessert are just a few suggestions out of millions.  Don't forget the hot chocolate as well.

Surprise a friend by sharing a box of chocolates. Try a new chocolate recipe or cookie. Enjoy a chocolate candy. There are many ways to celebrate today.

What is your favorite chocolate treat?

Monday, October 27, 2014

October is Down syndrome month

October is Down Syndrome awareness month. Did you know that Down syndrome is a developmental disability that affects over 400,000 people in the United States? October is a time to celebrate the abilities of those with Down Syndrome.

Down Syndrome occurs when a baby has a full or partial extra chromosome 21. This extra chromosome will change the course of development.  There are three types of Down Syndrome - trisomy 21, translocation and mosaicism.  Trisomy 21 is the type found in 95 percent of the cases.

People with Down Syndrome now have the life expectancy to age 60. In 1982, the life expectancy was only about 25 years old.  Many who have the disability live full active lives. They attend school, work, and are able to make decisions for themselves.

Down Syndrome can happen to anyone regardless of race, income or ethnic background.  The characteristics of those with the disability are that they are shorter,low muscle tone, and upward slant to the eye.  However, each person with Down Syndrome is different in their own way.

It used to be that babies born to mothers older than 35 had an increased chance to have a baby with Down syndrome. But now eighty percent of the cases are from mothers younger than 35.

Luckily, due to medical advances, people who have Down syndrome live longer even they are more inclined to get sicknesses. They are more likely to have heart defects, certain types of cancer, hearing problems and memory loss.

Even though all people who have Down Syndrome have some cognitive disability, they are often mild.  They do not take away from the person's talents, personality, love and capabilities to live a life that they want.

Take time to understand people with Down Syndrome. They are individuals who might have some differences and challenges, but they are still incredible people. They strive to live out the most wonderful life possible.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Kids care week

Children are our future so what we teach and example will therefore affect the future. October 26-November 1 is Kids Care Week. This week is dedicated in helping children find ways to make the world a better place.

Kids Care Week promotes volunteer work for children. By raising children who are compassionate and ready to help someone else the better our country will be. Here are some great ways to volunteer-not only for this week-but all year long!

Organize your pantry and donate what you don't use or extras.
Donate old book bags,toys and clothes.
Play board games at a senior center or nursing home.
Donate leftover food at a shelter.
Look through jackets that might not fit anymore and donate.
Share your talents with others.
Bake for older neighbors.
Share kind words with your family and friends. 
Donate books to library.
Recycle plastic and paper. 
Water plants and plant flowers.
Turn off lights you are not using.
Reuse things when you can. 
Try not to be wasteful. 
Turn off water as you brush your teeth
Eat lunch with a new kid at school or someone looking lonely.
Call your grandparents.
Practice random acts of kindness. 
Give your teacher a picture. 
Help your friends and family.

Friday, October 24, 2014

The most interesting thing about me

I recently read an article about a writer with cerebral palsy who had a professor who said her disability was the most interesting thing about her.  It made me think about my own life and wonder how people perceive me.

I have fought hard not to be defined by my own cerebral palsy. It isn't an easy task when your disability is so obvious and you need help. I've refused though to use it as an excuse to let it define who I am. 

When people meet me, of course, cerebral palsy becomes a topic. It's a very visual disability that requires assistance (my kind anyway.)  But once they get to know me, especially the ones closest to me, tend to even forget I have a disability. It's not something I talk about on a daily basis or even think about. I even have to think when I'm asked something about my disability because it is what it is.

I'll never forget when one of my friends was helping me at breakfast. She put me in my chair and put the food in front of me. Then she sat down and just continued on with the conversation. I laughed when I needed to remind her that I needed fed! Another time, my late husband told me that women who could walk looked funny to him since he was so happy with me and used to me.

Also, I told my then boyfriend but now husband that I wanted ice cream when we were talking online.  He told me to go get it.  He completely forgot that I couldn't walk. We both laughed at that one. 

Having a disability can't help but change something in you and somewhat shape your perspective. But it doesn't define your soul, personality or being.  If you are a bitter person walking then chances are that you will be a bitter person sitting.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Not for the weak or selfish.

It's too bad when you're eighteen that you don't know exactly what career choice is best.  School is so much easier because of no marriage and usually no children yet. You can focus on studying and enjoying life.

Many times, however, it isn't the case. Many people don't have a career in what they went to school for in college. Adults either return to college or want to when they can. Our family is in that boat right now.

Jeff decided to earn his LPN degree and license. I knew it wasn't going to be easy. Big changes were ahead.  He has a degree in hotel management but that career path is no good for raising a family. Hours are unpredictable and long.

The LPN program that he is in is about a year and a half with the summer off.  We are nearing the end of the second month (but who is counting...right?). 

I am proud of how hard he is studying. He literally comes home, studies,makes dinner, puts laundry in, feeds me and kids then studies straight until 8 or after. He will put Jason to bed and study as we try to spend sometime together. Then we both wake up at 5:30 in the morning to repeat. The weekends are slightly better except Sundays that  he is there but not due to studying.

I know in the end that I'll get my husband back and it won't feel as I'm a single mother.  There are times when I'm helping Laura with homework on one end of the table, Jason is calling mom at the other end and Jeff is spilling out medical facts that I just want to hide in my room.  But I don't and won't. 

It might be a little more than what I expected and I find myself lonely, exhausted or feel bad I didn't get to write. Then I tell myself to suck it up, put on those big girl panties and deal.   In a year or so though I'll look back and think yes we did it.  But by then, I might be engulfed in my own studying for my accounting degree!!

School bus safety

National school bus safety week is from October 20-24.  School bus safety is very important for students and drivers. It is sad to hear of many tragic or even any accident at all involving a school bus. Remembering a few safely tips can help ensure safe arrivals for all.

Please stop when a bus is at a bus stop.  Too often cars keep going pass or in front of a school bus loading or unloading children. Drivers do not realize that kids are running across streets either to make it to the bus on time or run home. Drivers should not rely on a child to be looking both ways or judge correctly how fast a car is moving.

When students are walking to and from a bus stop, drivers need to be aware. Let them cross the street when they need to. If you are late to work or an appointment, driving safely still applies especially around children.

Students need to walk to the bus stop and not run.  They need to look both ways before crossing the street and be aware of the traffic patterns around them. At the bus stop, they shouldn't rough house or play around near the road.  They should not talk to strangers or get into a car of a stranger.  Only board the bus when they come to a complete stop.  Dress appropriately for the weather while waiting for the bus or coming home.

Teaching children how to behave on a school bus is just as important. They need to understand to not being distracting to the school bus driver unless help is needed. No yelling, swearing, standing, jumping or running around the bus.  Be respectful to the bus driver as you would a teacher.

Bullying needs to be something of the past. Bullying,violence, any kind of assault or being mean should not be tolerated.  If a student notices any of these activities taking place, they need to report the problem to a responsible adult.

Pro-life day of solidarity

October 21 is Pro-Life Day of Silent Solidarity. This means being silent during the day for the 50 million babies in just America who have been killed by abortion since 1973. It also means that messages about abortion will fill social media like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter with hashtags like #prolifegen and #silentday.

Abortion is more than a religious issue and way more than a political issue.  Abortion is a human rights issue. Something went terribly wrong to make a law stating ending a life of a growing baby is acceptable. It's equally upsetting and shocking that people will go at great lengths to justify killing these human beings.

Calling an unborn baby a blob of cells or a potential person can only get a conscious so far. Learning the facts, knowing about baby development, and understanding that abortion basically burns and dismantles a baby in the womb should be enough for anyone to say abortion is a horrendous wrong thing to do.  But still some go on justifying and denying to help their conscious deal with reality.

Please do not give up on trying to help people understand abortion is never a good choice.  No matter what the disability or defect a person has a right to life. Adoption is a wonderful option. Plus there are many organizations to help women keep their baby.

Keep silent for babies but then let the education begin.  Education, prayers, conversations, volunteering and love will help both women and children.  Hopefully, abortionists will want to stop the blood on their hands and stop counting baby body parts.  One day at a time and with one action at a time.

For more information -

Rachel's Vineyard - This site will help women who aborted heal and recover from any pain post abortion.  You aren't alone in feeling pain after abortion.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Our Friday

Laura has been off since her half day on Wednesday.  Her school began earlier than others in the area and is a longer day than other schools. She is learning a lot and I really think it is the best fit for her. During a trimester, they have what they call Student Lead Conferences. Your child goes with you to discuss how they're doing in school so far.

Laura's teachers had nothing but glowing things to say. She's doing third-fourth grade work and all in the 90s. Laura is respectful, easy to correct and eager to learn. All good things that makes a mom very proud.

When it ended, we went to the book fair. She already purchased books there, but I wanted to check it out.  I bought two books for Jason and one book for my nephew for Christmas.  And since Laura had such a good conference, I let her pick out something. She picked out a box of girly stationary.

As Laura and I were in her conference, Jason and my attendent checked out where the buses were.  He's learned to say bus and says it very clearly. He liked seeing them from a distance but not so close up.

Afterwards, we took them to Kolbs Dairy Farm.  We got ice cream, milk, apple cider, lollipops and a pumpkin.  Laura said it was the best day ever.  Jason didn't want to share his spoon with me, but he was very happy to get his own and did pretty well feeding himself!

Laura seemed surprised how many times Jason said my name. I think she got sick of hearing it and told him that I was sick of hearing it. I explained to her that I love hearing both their voices and he can talk to me all he wants.

After lunch, we baked brownies and relaxed.  I love being able to spend time with them together.  It's a great feeling to see them both happy and getting along.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

My precious Laura

Hopefully, most mothers feel that their children are precious. I'd do anything for them and die for them in a second if needed. I don't know why but in the last six months Laura has been terrified about me dying.  I have a bad feeling it's from my joking about research on death and cerebral palsy. I don't know. 

It's almost a nightly thing of tears and worries. Laura has this incredible sadness about me dying. Tonight she told me she loved me as much as God's love. She said it will be worse if she died first and could see me but couldn't help me.  She hopes me, her and Jason stick together forever and die at the worlds end together. Talk about rip your heart out and how do you even console her with those fears?

I remember having similar fears about my grandparents dying, parents and siblings.  I often cried in my pillow in bed just worrying.  I'm trying to teach her that worrying doesn't do any good but I don't want to break her sensitivity either.  She's just an incredible kid and I cannot stand the thought of her being hurt by anyone.

Oh dear...

Monday, October 6, 2014

Walk for Life

So back in April, I was asked to be a speaker at the first annual Walk (wheels) for Life in Philadelphia. I felt honored to be asked. I've been very much pro-life since I was horrified learning about abortion. I think I was ten or eleven and some talk show was going over the topic. I remember feeling the same disbelief as I still do today that anyone, knowing facts, could think abortion was acceptable.

I also can't believe I choose abortion as a topic for my debate speech in 8th grade. I shook like crazy but I did it. Through out high school, I wrote plays, poems, research papers and speeches about the horrors of abortion. I did this mainly to educate but also to make some sense to it myself. I kept thinking I must be missing something that thousands saw and thought killing an unborn baby was acceptable.

I still haven't found the answer.  

I felt thrilled giving my speech along with many talented speakers. Father Frank Pavone has been a speaker on pro-life issues for years and years. Terri Schivavo brother gave an excellent talk about his sister.  Terri was starved to death by a court order. She was healthy except lack of mobility and communication.

Over three hundred people came to Love Park. My dad tòok me because I thought it was too adult for Laura. I didn't want to educate her on the horrors of abortion.

My speech focused on the fact that children with disabilities are being targeted for abortion. Children with dwarfism,muscular dystrophy, missing limbs and several more disabilities are being killed daily. The numbers are astounding. I focused on the amazing lives people have even with a disability.  A disability might be challenging but no life is for ours to decide the value. I also talked about the beautiful choice of adoption. 

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Why I stayed

The news is all about the video about the football player punching his now wife in an elevator.  Of course, I thought why would she marry him?!? But then feelings sunk in.  I've been there.

I know why she stayed. That punch wasn't the first. I'm positive of that. It starts off easy - easy for someone to excuse. As time goes on, the abuse worsens but the apologies deepen. You believe he really doesn't want to hurt you. You believe that you need to stay because you understand them. 

Then you set deadlines in your head. Deadlines come and go. When you think it's better, then bam it happens again. The abuse becomes normal in some ways. 

What needs to happen usually is falling out of love. When you fall out of love, you see situations clearer and more objective. Then just make that jump and go!!! When you do, you might look back and think how is that possible I stayed.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014


I don't think I'll ever get tired of hearing my name, "Mom." Jason says it so clearly. One of these days, he is going to have a long sentence afterwards. Right now, he just says Mom followed by words that only make sense to him.  I know exactly why he says it.

Laura always calls me Mom and then tells me something. Jason is mimicking her, but I just wish I knew what he was saying. None the less, it's the best.  I hear it about fifty times a day. I get a kick out of hearing him running down the hall calling my name when I'm in a different room.

Jason also has a liking to the letter E. Whenever I spell his name, he will say E.  I tell him too bad that I didn't name him Ethan!  He definitely is a cute guy. 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

7 things I never knew until parenthood

I've always wanted to be a mom. However, there are a few things I was never warned about or maybe I just ignored out of my own disillusion. Anyway, here are some things that I've learned as of late.

1. If you want to be the parent that spends time with your kids and raise them the way you dreamt, free time is only a few minutes. Or the few moment before you give whatever energy you have left at night to your spouse.

2. Boys and girls are so very different, and that is brilliant. My son figures out things that my daughter hadn't at his age and vice versa. He is physical energy all day except nap time.  She is mental/emotional energy all day. They are amazingly different which makes a fun challenge.

3. The commercials of parents being thrilled when their children go back to school are ridiculous.  I feel very sad when my daughter goes back to school and can't imagine how I will feel when Jason goes with her. When you love someone so deeply, joy comes when they return. I'm not saying I'm crying every school day. I'm very happy she's happy and learning. But I can't deny having a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach when coming back from the bus stop alone.

4. Put the technology away. I admit I like my iPad and iPhone. I text and work from both. However, I do not want my son and daughter to remember me as hunched over looking at an iPad and not them.  Jason actually reminded me of this when he was 17 month old.  Laura and Jason were sitting cute on storage cubes and I was engulfed in email.  He came over, stooped down, looked at me, babbled something pointing to Laura. Then he ran back to sit with her.  I felt like he was telling me, "Put that away - we are growing here!"

5. Parenting styles can be completely different between spouses.  As a couple, you laugh, get along, communicate and are loving. Then they tell your children something or ask them to do something and immediately you see red!!! Parenting as a couple can be as challenging as marriage. But stick with it, have an open mind and communicate. 

6. Like Willie Nelson sings, "You are always on my mind," so are my kids. I try to think three steps ahead and help them live life smoothly. But things will break, feelings get hurt and things will be forgotten.  However, I strive to tell them how much I love them by words and actions. 

7. Love is amazing.  Act in love, speak in love and let love bring happiness. Being stern, mean, rude or a disrespectful parent is so much more a boring horrible life.  Let love bring the joy because that creates the best memories. 

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Jason wiggles

Jason has an adorable wiggle. He wiggles whenever he hears music. We also think that he is mimicking me moving my head due to my cerebral palsy. But whatever the case, it is so cute when he does it. I notice that he likes to wiggle to make people smile. Jason also has his own babble. He is saying some words but he's stringing together a bunch of sounds. One of these days, he will just come out with sentences!

Last night he had a cookie and Jeff was feeding me a chocolate bar.  Jason went for the chocolate bar and when we said no that he had a cookie - Jason dropped the cookie like a hot potato! So cute.

Yesterday I had my new attendent come and try the day out. She was very good in reintroducing herself to Jason. She took it slow and I was right by his side.  He handled everything well and in about fifteen minutes was relaxed enough to let her change him. I know for me how it feels having someone new take care of me so I imagine his apprehension. 

Jason will know just as Laura did that people who help us will come and go. It's a hard reality of life but my love for them and Jeff will never go away. We will always make sure they get what they need no matter who is helping me. I'm still having a hard time with how and why my previous attendent left. It's hard when you get used to someone and they leave without warning.

I know I'm a strong person but I still have feelings. But anyway on to a beautiful day!

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Children's place

Use the code forty3 to get free shipping and 40 percent off at the children's place today only!  I buy most of Laura's school pants and clothes from them. Excellent quality. 

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Oh, I miss writing

Time doesn't stop for anyone.  Time is either our worst enemy or our best friend. I have mixed feelings about time  but mainly I am not too happy with it right now. 

I'll start off by saying my body is not very good with getting older.  I've been having annoying back pain that is more than just a dull ache. It's a stabbing pain that radiates a shoulder blade making doing anything almost impossible.  It travels from my right side to left side depending on the day.  I am not one who enjoys complaining mainly because I don't like complainers. However, this pain has got to stop visiting me.  I have too much to do. 

I've been in and out of physical therapy a lot since April.  Unfortunately, it just keeps returning. I am learning a bit how to handle it - heat,  lying on my back,  medicine. I have made an appointment to figure it out hopefully once and for all. 

The one thing that seems to point to aggravating the pain is typing.  The way I type is unconventional but has been working for me all my life.  I'm hoping to figure it all out soon.  I sit in the W position and type by placing my hand on my knee. Then I use my index finger to type with. 

I'm sure I'll figure things out soon. 

Thursday, July 10, 2014

I chose a good one

I want to start off saying that I'm a happily married woman. I am blessed to be with Jeff and it has nothing to do with him accepting I am in a wheelchair. I hate when people say that like I'm unworthy of a husband because I can't walk. Equally as much as I hate when I hear people in wheelchairs say they just want a man that accepts the disability.  No. You deserve a great person with qualities you like for a very, very, very long time.

No couple sees eye to eye on everything and not everyday is a romance novel. However, he is a good person and helps me realize teamwork is more than me just pulling the weight. My attendent left suddenly over a family emergency. I would've greatly preferred a two week notice but I didn't get one.  Jeff was worried about my stress level and met the challenge.  He works with me as we try to meet our goals.

On June 26, we celebrated four years of commitment. I think we have both grown and matured together. Jeff gave me a blue reusable cup filled with strawberries and chocolate chips. He also took me to see Journey the Sunday prior to our anniversary. I gave him cologne and peppermint. My dad baby sat our anniversary evening and I took Jeff out to dinner as well.

Fairly soon Jeff will be going to LPN school. I'm happy for him that he is meeting a goal but nervous that we will lose touch or break under pressure. Hopefully, we will be fine..

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

The kids in July

I can't believe we are heading into mid July already. The summer is trickling away and needs to slow it down. Jason has been incredibly amazingly cute a long with his sister. 

Jason is the best entertainment. He is constantly busy with doing something and everything. Jason dances at any tune or even no music at all. He still likes his cars, firetrucks and anything with wheels.  I bought him a dump trunk to go with his firetruck. He likes it but doesn't get the concept of it just yet. He's still the easiest little guy that entertains himself. I'm working with him with words. He is saying more and more each day.

Laura is growing up to be a smart, logical and fierce person. She knows what she wants and will work for it. She's been having a good summer with family trips or just hanging out with her brother. Laura has been reading often as wll since we limit her iPad usage. Jeff's parents have been taking her to terrific Tuesdays at a museum close to them. She loves the activities and learning lots. Jeff has been taking her swimming and she's been swimming at my sister's house. 

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Start of summer

Summer is here! Laura has been out of school since June 13, and I think we've been quite busy.  We have gone to a fair, parties, various outdoor events, Atlantic City, new restaurants and now Vacation Bible School. I can't say we've had a boring summer day so far.

My last official teaching day was last Thursday. He will be coming for babysitting and math tutoring during the rest of the summer. I'm also helping Jeff prepare for a math class as he is gearing up for LPN school.  I'm trying to keep Laura's academic skills up also but it's hard after a busy day.

This week I've been teaching Vacation Bible School at St. Basil's. I'm teaching second grade. I have Laura in my class and my friend's daughter for the week. It's a bit hectic in the morning getting me ready and dropped off on time. I hand it to my attendants for making this happen. Without them, I wouldn't be teaching. 

The kids have been fantastic with accepting my disability. They treat me like they would any teacher and that is awesome. We play, sing and learn. Today more than one of them said today went too fast! I said that it means that they were having fun. 

Jason is 16 months and very cute.  He has developed yelling and loves to hear his echo. He is learning about cleaning his toys up and handing us household objects. I'm working on Jason learning his body parts and language development. He still loves to dance, swim, cars, trucks.  He enjoys carrying around his yellow chickie that he got at Easter.  His favorite show is the Chica show on Sprout.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Infantino blocks for Jason

The other day, I decided to buy Jason soft blocks. Jason is 16 months today and is at the age of learning how to build. He is also very much a boy that likes to throw. So, I decided to buy him soft blocks. No one gets hurt but can still have fun.

After about a half an hour of browsing online, I bought the cheaper set from Amazon. I almost purchased the more expensive set, but I had a hard time justifying over $20 on a few blocks. The reviews all said great things but $22 something is a lot of money for a family of four.

I found Infantino blocks for $8.88. They are perfect for a baby even who are less than one year old. He likes that he can  throw them around and no one tells him no. A baby can chew on them and no harm. They squeak as well. I believe that they will last Jason a long time. 

Jason carries two at a time around the house. He likes hitting them together and making the squeak sound. He also lines them up or stacks them two at a time. I think I made a great purchase, and he will play with them for a few years.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Father's Day

This weekend celebrate two family holidays. It's Father's Day and Family Awareness Day this Sunday. These are both very important since fathers are essential to families.

Fathers are often the silent or unrecognized partner in parenting. However, a father who us active in a child's life has a more successful happy child. A study came out recently that father's who help the mother raise daughters who are more successful.

Family awareness day is the third Sunday in June. Family awareness is about keeping family a priority. The dark reality is that society has a way of trying to pull family's a part. The growing habits of cursing, yelling and way over sexualizing everything destroys family. Family should begin with respect first and all else falls into place.

So to celebrate is to not ignore the holidays. Appreciate your father in any way possible. Also, as a family, examine your habits. Are they productive habits or harmful? Try to make the family stronger and build bridges.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

These moments

My children are the best of me. Growing up, I knew that I would have children. It never bothered me not knowing how or if it were possible. Having children was just a must do. 

I played with dolls a bit differently than many other girls. I couldn't manipulate them physically. So, I would line them up and do imagination games in my head. I'd often talk them out loud. Pretending saved me from many hours of boredom. 

I didn't have a grand master plan how having children would work. I knew physically I wasn't capable of caring exactly to what a baby needed. What I did know was I had a lot of love to share. I observed how my parents raised us. There was great things they did and there were things I knew I never ever would do.

God had the plan all a long.  He wasn't going to sit there and tell me details. He let it unfold and helped me learn. I have moments of great joy. I have moments of great sorrow. But I know becoming a mom is nothing I'll ever regret.

The other night Jeff asked Laura to help clean the kitchen because after dinner he came down with a terrible migraine. She accepted the challenge. I swallowed the urge to have self pity that I couldn't do it and my little girl had to. But then magic happened.

I guided her to do the basic clean up, but then she quickly felt excited.  She made it a TV show about cleaning. Laura loved filling the sink with bubbles and asked what she could clean next. My frustration disappeared as we bonded and truly had fun.  

I also entertained Jason as he played in the high chair. He is a smart little boy who is developing daily. Jason just gets things and has a spark in his eye.

Her love for cleaning continued as we sat in her room cleaning even more.  At one point, I had tears in my eyes thinking one day she won't need me helping her (more like guiding her) and she will have a house of her own. Then I thought the need to enjoy these moments even though I'm exhausted and just want to relax.

As I came out of Laura's room feeling accomplished, Jason saw me. He smiled widely, yelled "MA!" He ran to me and sat in my lap. I'm so glad to be alive and in that moment.

I'll have too much time to relax when Jason and Laura are both in school. I need to fight through my own selfish tendencies and allow it to seep into my memory.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Let's go to the dentist

Last Monday, I got the right side of my mouth done. I wasn't as knocked out as I was on the left side. I'm still not one hundred percent but I'm happy it's done!

On Thursday, Jason had his first dental appointment. His insurance has been telling me that when he gets a tooth, take him.  I took Laura when she was closer to three so I could explain it to her. I am a firm believer on healthy teeth because it makes life so much easier!

I'm hoping Jason will not be fearful next time we go.  He cried and wasn't a fan. The best part for him was getting a toothbrush to play with and a squeaky frog.  He did get floride and I was told all is going well. Jason is teething big time too.

Jason was able to sit on Crystal's lap to help him feel comfortable. I was both amused and saddened when the dentist said he didn't have cavities. What 15 month would have cavities?? Then it struck me, some parents just give sugary drinks, not healthy food or never brush teeth.

He goes back in November so hopefully all goes well!

What parents forget....

Too often parents forget who they are talking to and just speak. Yes, this is a vent blog post. No parent is perfect because no human being is perfect. However, it makes my blood cold and body cringe when I hear a parent speak harsh to their child over and over again.

Do they not realize that their feelings are fragile and words hurt? Words stick for years and even a lifetime. Is it necessary to be so rude just because they are your child?

I try to diffuse a situation with love and humor. My patience will be tested and it's hard not to lose my temper. However, I feel words are loving, knowledgable, or weapons. Adults teach kids how to use their words. Do you want to raise a harsh mean kid or a kind loving one?

Stop. Think and Love.

Forms of mothering

Being a mother with limitations is a lot different than without any limitations.  I remember the early years with Laura where physically I couldn't do everything and it would kill me when she'd run to a caregiver over me. But I know now to be patient and present. Laura and I have a solid relationship. 

For a few days, I was concerned about my relationship with Jason. I felt concerned that he wasn't seeing me as his mommy. It was silly looking back at it. Jason definitely knows I'm Mommy.

He listens to me and likes sitting on my lap for hugs. He comes to me when he's tired. He will lean on me and likes our peek a boo game. Jason claps when I sing to him. MWhat I can't do physically, I try to make up for by always being present and verbal. I always tell him words for whatever he's looking at or playing with. I pick up his toys, kiss him constantly and comfort him. Recently, Jason started saying mama and will look at me.

Laura's father passed away when she was 6 months. So raising a young toddler with a partner is different. It's nice to see their bond grow. Jeff takes him out to parks, car shows and spends time with him. Jeff makes me feel good when he listens to my advice and usually follows my style of parenting. 

Jason ia now 15 months. He says Mama, Dada, Laura, baby, uh oh, what, bye, and hi. He is very intelligent and figures out things quickly. When we tell him no, he stops 90 percent of the time. 

Like every mom, I worry if I spend enough time reading to him,educating him, and playing with him. But that's all part of any mother worries.

Not so harsh

I find it hard to hear and understand why people speak harsh or no clue how words hurt. It just takes a few minutes or seconds to think about what you are saying. Love isn't harsh. If you love someone, words should reflect that even if you are angry. If you can't even muscle up nice words, don't speak.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

May is a fun month

May has been a fun and busy month. We were miraculously given a van, Mother's Day, festivals and getting ready for end of school year. I have always liked May.

Laura's school had a Mother's Day tea last Friday.  A few days before, she excitedly told me that her classmates figured out where I could sit so I could be by her seat. She was also thrilled by the fact that she could feed me cookies and hold my iced tea.

I had to hold back my tears as she read her top ten list aloud about the reasons why she loved me. Laura used to be so painfully shy that she would hide behind me. To see her read aloud and actually volunteer to do so plus all reasons why she loved me was almost too much for me.

The Saturday before Mother's Day we went on a long walk. We went to a local farmers market, ate and on the way back, thought we were going a short cut but ended up taking us longer! I was sunburnt! The kids were ok.

My family came over for dinner later on and had fun. It's always nice when we all get together. Jeff sweetly managed the food, set up and clean up.

On Mother's Day, she gave me a similar list. My attendent helped Jason make me a card by tracing his hands and feet.  Jason says new words now - baby is the newest.  He also says ball.  He is getting very good at nesting toys by size. 

Sunday, May 4, 2014

A miracle has happened again.

Life isn't always easy, but God is always present. He knows what needs to happen and it might not fit into your ideal plan, but it's His perfect plan.

My van had some serious issues and has been draining our resources.  One night I woke up in a cold sweat about worrying if the van would break down or no longer drivable. How would I get my kids where they needed? How would I simply do my day to day errands? How can I keep my kids safe?

I entered a contest to win a new accessible van.  I have had the best experience of people voting for me. People really put themselves out there to help others. I'm so thankful that this contest exists to get my situation and others known!!

My mother in law shared my story with other family members to vote for me.  Through that, a cousin of my father in law sent it to her friends. One of her friends owned a new wheelchair accessible van.  She was ready to donate it to Wounded Warriors but after hearing my story, donated the van to me.

All she wanted was to meet me. A friend of mine slept over with Jason and Laura so we could leave early in the morning. My father in law drove Jeff and I up to CT and visited.  The woman who donated the van is truly remarkable. She has built playgrounds in Haiti and now working on building an orphanage in Haiti as well. She is 74! 

When I first saw the van, I felt like laughing and crying. It's so unbelievable that it happened to us. I felt like I won the lottery. It has everything I could possibly want and more. My life will be so much easier now and a boulder of worry is off my shoulders. After a great lunch, Jeff and I drove my new van back home.

Even now as I look out my window, I'm in awe that this really happened and the van is mine.

So thank you to all who voted and keep on spreading joy!

Monday, April 28, 2014

A toddler is good physical, speech and occupational therapy

Jason is now 14 months old. He walks all over and is fast! My attendant and I laugh as we race to the bathroom in the morning to get me ready. We have a difficult time beating him in sometimes. 

For someone with cerebral palsy, therapy is great! In my busy schedule, I have a hard time fitting in gym time. But lately, Jason keeps me moving.  Most of the time I'm on the floor with him. Luckily, I'm still flexible enough to be on the floor. I need to be careful that I do not sit in the W position too long though.

I'm chasing him, following him, playing with him or wrestling with him.  He is active and likes to be on the move. Laura was active too but differently. She wanted me to read nonstop, do puzzles and even art at one.  Jason will sit two minutes for a book and has no time for puzzles right now. Laura also weighed half of him at one so she was easy for me to maneuver. Jason definitely makes me stronger!

Jeff has done an outstanding job making our main living area safe for Jason.  We believe in teaching him no but also want him to be comfortable in his own house. I think we are doing a good balance.

He is good for speech. I say things as clear as possible. I do this so he knows the words and understands what is expected. Jason is getting better at listening to me but I wouldn't be comfortable alone outside yet. I remember teaching Laura early to hold on to my armrest as we walk. I need to encourage that with Jason.

Jason is great for occupational therapy. He has these toys that require some fine motor control. I play and work with his toys along with him. We are both learning and enjoying.

But most of all, Jason is excellent for hugging and kisses. He will just walk up to you and kiss you. Or he comes up and leans into you with his head to your shoulder. 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Busy Saturday leads to fun times

Family time is precious. With two kids growing fast, I want to squeeze in the moments.  On Friday, we did things around the house and it was just a somber time.

On Saturday, we woke up early. All were showered, dressed and out the door by 9:15! Jeff's friend's wife organized an Easter Egg hunt by their house. They live about 40 minutes away.

The only bad part was Jason and I weren't quite feeling good. But we weren't bad enough to cancel.  Laura started out in a cranky mood but then cheered up. She did great at the hunt. Jason isn't into it at all so he watched. Jason is amazing. He can make the best of most situations and is happy.

The park had a play set and a big grassy area. Jason learned how to walk for the first time in grass. He enjoyed playing and rolling around with Laura and Liam (our friend's 2 year old son.)  Jason first kept touching the grass without standing. Then Laura came over and showed him walking in it was ok. Then he walked.

After a little picnic, conversation and playing we said goodbye and headed to Walmart. We got Jason sneakers and sandals. The sneakers are orange and grey. They look lots like his Daddy's sneakers.  Laura got lost for a few minutes and learned a valuable lesson to call my name.

Jeff and I decided to go to Shady Maple. We were only 15min away from it. The only problem was both kids fell fast asleep. So we drove and talked for a bit to give them rest. 

Shady Maple is a huge smorgasbord in Lancaster. I've been going there with my family since I was a little girl. Going there flooded my mind with memories of my late grandmother. She enjoyed taking my family and aunt plus cousins twice a year or so.  They have a huge gift shop that we always looked around.

We went at a perfect time. It was crowded but not overly. When we left, the line was extremely long.  Jeff has to get my food, his and Jason's because it's a buffet style. Jason ate very well and behaved wonderfułly. Laura ate ok.  We went to the gift shop afterwards. Jeff got Jason a John Deere tractor and I got Laura a toy.  

Laura was surprised how another kid could complain about a parent not spending $25 on a toy. She has a great value of money.

Shortly after going home, we all went to bed to relax and gear up for the next day ! The Easter bunny had to come.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Holiness and cuteness

I was to have my feet washed during Holy Thursday Mass. I was a bit nervous about it because of my spastic movements and I'm ticklish. But it's an honor to be asked and felt like God wanted me to. He likes to give me little challenges to overcome.

I wore my sneaker sandals to make life easier. My dad, daughter and nephew came.  Jeff wanted to bring Jason but Jason wasn't feeling himself. So we agreed he should stay home.

Again, I'm so glad I was asked because I probably wouldn't have gone.  It's not a Holy Day of Obligation and sadly, things like those get pushed aside way too much. The homily that the visiting priest gave was great and inspiring. It's pretty amazing really because mainly he talked about why he loved being a priest.

He put things in perspective from a priest point of view. He loves being a priest because he loves helping others. So enthusiastic and happy. I wish everyone felt the same.

When they called us forward, I went to the altar and sat with everyone else. My dad slipped off my sandal beforehand. I did fine and felt an intense feeling of, "oh my goodness, Jesus did this!" He still is by helping us daily.

Tonight Laura was very cute. She told me she hopes to get a certain toy so I don't have to spend money. She's a very caring and thoughtful person. She's also honest.  I'm very blessed to have Jason and Laura!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Jason walking, Laura learning

Jason has officially started walking at 13 months.  One day he decided to take a few steps, then he walked a few more to my dad, and then all on his own. So far, it's not been much harder for me to care for him yet. I just find it so cute to see him accomplish new things.

Jason does like to sit on me,kiss me and the newest thing is lifting up my shirt and kissing my back.  He is usually a good little boy except he is obsessed with trying to turn on my wheelchair, drive it, and climb into it.  Jason still likes playing with cars. Now his favorite toy is a red fire truck made by green toys. He just pushes it everywhere. 

Jason also recognized stuffed animals and gives them hugs plus kisses.  It is cute to hear him go, "aww!"

Laura has been doing some amazing things as well. She likes to work ahead in her math and reading homework. The school uses Raz Kids and she loved it. She has also earned up a level in her swimming lessons.  Laura has been in swim lessons since 2 and it's great watching her tackle new challenges. In June, she has a karate test and maybe will be an orange belt. 

Laura is definitely a learner. She enjoys figuring things out on her own. I think she rather read non fiction than fiction. In the morning, she will help me get Jason out of his crib if he is awake. She gets a kick of him watching her getting on the bus. When she leaves, he says "uh oh!"

Saturday, April 12, 2014

10 facts of life

I've learned some tough facts to swallow this last month.

1. Jesus has taught us to love everyone and be caring. However, He didn't force people to like Him. It's the same now. When people seem to care and have your back, and then make it obvious that they don't. Believe their actions, wish them well and put energy to those who care.

2. Nitro gas makes me cry.

3. My husband does love me more than I realize. Hopefully one day, I'll get it.

4. Every dark cloud moves away to sun. Just be patient enough to see it.

5. Children grow up too quick and parents age too quickly.

6. Even though I'm not allowed to write as much as I want to due to my hips, I'm still productive as ever.

7. Healthy teeth are so important.

8. We do make our own destiny. Don't be lazy and waste time.

9. Being nice is so much easier than mean. Why do so many choose to be mean?

10. Know your self worth and let the true you shine through. Just make sure you like yourself first.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Weekend of relaxation and promotion

This weekend has been pleasant. My attendant couldn't make it Friday so we made it a family day.  Laura had a half day so Jeff, Jason and I picked her up. We went shopping and lunch.  We went to Uno pizza and Laura made her own pizza. She thought it was so cool!  Jeff and I got a laugh out of it because she normally doesn't like pizza. I guess when you make it yourself, it tastes better. 

The rest of the day I sat on the couch.  You see I sit in a horrid position to type. It's called the W position and it's bad on your hips.  My physical therapist said if I want to stop the pain I need to not sit that way.

Jeff and I started the series Dowton Abbey in between nap time and after bed time for kids.  We enjoy it. It's a good story!

Today we went to Charlestown sale, goodwill.  After coming home, I helped Jeff study for a test for nursing school. 

I've been trying to promote my contest for the van but gets hard with a sore hip.  I have friends helping me so that's awesome. 

Please vote here!!

Monday, March 24, 2014

The van contest

I entered into a contest to win a new accessible van. Unfortunately, I was over a week late entering it because I didn't know about it. When I did learn about it, I felt bad taking votes away from others. Then my best friend reminded me we deserve it too, and I took the plunge.

What I didn't expect is the outpouring of love and support that I received. Friends, family and perfect strangers shared my message and voted. Since Saturday morning, I have received almost 300 votes! I am very blessed!

The hard part now is to keep people voting. Voting is until May 9 and people can vote daily. If they answer the extra question, there vote doubles. I hate annoying people. However, this s a much needed van. Mine is falling apart and has constant issues.

If you would be so kind to vote for me, please click here: voting site. It takes a few minutes to set it up but then you can smoothly vote daily.  I would really appreciate if you vote daily.  

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

One year Jason

Jason is a learning, social and on the go little boy. I am filled with joy every morning when I see his little face. He is learning constantly and just being amazing.

Jason is a very fast crawler. You here him coming with his happy crawling breath. He isn't walking on his own, but walks so well with his walker. He has learned how to steer it. Jason used to just push it into a wall and sit down to crawl away. Now he maneuvers down the hallway etc. He follows the person vaccuuming too with his walker.

He says words here and there. "Oh Wow!" " uh oh" Jason can call for his sister and say Boo! He knows the names of our animals. 

I love sitting on the floor and playing with him. He will hug and kiss me.  We play with cars, blocks, tops and all his toys. He likes to hug his octopus he just got from his grandmother for his birthday. I've seen him put toys back in their bin. Jason will sit now for more than two seconds to look at a book. 

Jason is a very good eater. He tries everything and usually like it. He's not big on cake though. He loves to eat chicken, green beans, blueberry muffins and raisins. He likes ice and Greek yogurt.

Jason tries to drive my wheelchair. But what amazes me is that he will listen when we say no for the most part. He will sit down. He might complain and I saw a few short tantrums but nothing horrible yet.

He sleeps all night and takes one 2-3 hour after lunch nap. Jason enjoys going to the library for play and story time. He goes right to the car bin. Everyone comments how social and happy he is.

Laura is the best big sister. She's sweet and will help him. She plays very nicely with him too.

Son of God

On Friday the movie, Son of God came out in theaters. I felt reluctant because I knew it was going to be emotional. CP and high emotions are a hard mix. I can't contain myself easily when hit with heavy emotions.

Jeff and I went and now I'm excited to see it again. The movie made me feel like I was watching the life of my best friend. But of course it was! Jesus is truly my ultimate best friend. He loves me even when I behave in ways He probably would not approve of.

The scenery is beautiful and music outstanding. I heard the story of the Passion several times but seeing everything put it in perspective. Yes, there were hard parts to witness. Some I had to look at the floor for a minute or two. But don't let that deter you. It's worth it even if you are a sensitive person. 

Seeing Mary watch her Son being beat and crucified ripped my heart. Having children,especially a son, I just can't imagine going through that. Mary believed in Him though and was with Jesus all of the time.

I cannot say enough about the ending. In previous movies about Jesus, the ending seemed quite quick. They often show the resurrection for a minute and end. Not the movie, Son of God. The ending left you uplifted and ready time share the Good News that Jesus remains in control. 

The movie is rated PG 13 and I agree with the rating. I'd love to have my daughter see parts of it but it reałly is too violent for someone younger than 13.

One scene struck me odd.  I'm not a Bible expert but I know the New Testament pretty well. When they were going to get the crowd to decide who they were going to set free, they only let those in that didn't know Jesus or like Him. I thought it was everybody that was in the area according to the Bible.

One thing is for sure, believers and nonbelievers should go see the Son of God. It's excellent. 

11 month Jason

It seems like yesterday I was about to go into labor. Now he will soon be a whole year old. Challenges have happened but mostly great joys. I'm one very lucky mommy!

Jason has a natural draw to cars. His favorite toy is a race car that I got him when he was about 5 months old. He pushes it all over and now even the walls making car sounds. We also have a fisher price car that he likes going in and out of. Often he goes in head first!

It's hard to say what his first word was or is. He's been saying mama for months. Up until recently, he hasn't connected it to me but is beginning to. He does say Laura quite clear though. He says, "Oh wow!" He also says Hi! Jason will mimic you so must be careful what you say.  Jason will wave to you.

Jason will do so big with his arms when you ask him how big he is. He also tilts his head to the side when saying "aw!"  He likes to clap, dance and make noises.

He sleeps just about all night and takes two naps. The second one is getting shorter. He enjoys sitting in his crib making noises and playing.

Jason gave up baby food when we went to Mexico and eats whatever we eat, just small bites. Jason isn't very picky with food.

He has two bottom teeth and his top two is coming in. Jason can walk with his dinosaur walker and other walker toy but not independently.  No rush though. He's an excellent crawler and pulls himself up anywhere on anything.

Jason seems amused by my wheelchair. He watches closely when I get in and out.  He smiles when I drive around and I know he will need to learn very early not to touch my joystick. 

He loves going out and about. He looks all around. In Mexico, he did great. He missed his carpeted floor and spacious crib though.

Jason does know the word "no" and we try not to overuse it so it keeps the importance. For the most part, he will stop. But like every kid, he sometimes looks back at you with a mischievous smile and continue his task. Then re direction. 
All I can say is this year flew by and can't believe he will be one on Thursday. Everyday is a blessing.

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