Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Blizzard 2016 at our house

As most know, the east coast was hit by super snow storm. Our area had about 28 inches fall starting on Friday at 7pm and ending Sunday around midnight.  Every time I looked out the window, it was white and more white.  I don't like the snow because it's a pain in the neck going anywhere.  I don't mind togetherness but even after awhile, that gets difficult. But we survived!

Laura had her green belt ceremony in karate.  I am very thankful that we could go without the snow. I'll write about her karate in another blog. Laura had one of her friends sleepover on Friday night. The girls were super excited. I was super excited for Laura since this year has been rough for her with some kids. So, seeing her so happy made me happy. I can also say that I have only seen Laura be so excited on a few rare occasions. Like when I told her she was having a brother!

The girls were fantastic and so nice to each other.  We let them watch Harry Potter and took Jason into our room to watch the Minion movie. Jason liked it but Jeff and I expected it to be a bit better.  We thought it was boring, but Jason watched it so that was good.  We put Jason to bed and the girls went to bed about 11.  It was blowing and snowing outside but we were all warm and safe.

About 5:45, I heard the girls were up. I was surprised they were up so early but I guess they were excited.  I laid in bed trying to relax and keep one ear out for them.  About 6:20, Laura knocked on my door to let me know that we were having a blizzard. And also that our dog, Lucky, couldn't make it outside and had an accident.

I came out to the living room and it was a whirlwind of carpet cleaners, paper towels and dog leashes.  They wanted to put the dogs on leashes and go out the front door. In my haze, I agreed.  It was blowing like crazy so that didn't work. Then they wanted to try the back and it was all giggles and confusion as they tried getting dogs outside during the blizzard. I managed to get them back in. I'm sure the neighborhood loved the commotion.

Unfortunately, her friend left earlier than planned due to the seriousness of the storm. Before leaving, they did some science projects.  After she left, we all relaxed and ate lunch. After putting Jason for a nap, Laura also fell asleep on the couch. Jeff did homework and I did a little of everything. That night as Jeff snow blowed once more, Laura and I cleaned the house.  She even vacuumed. She told me that she was happy to help me since I helped her so much.

Her friend slept over again on Sunday night because there wasn't school on Monday due to the snow.  They did just fine!


Thursday, January 21, 2016

10 must do activities on a snow day


Favorite activities on snow days

Here are some of my favorite activities to do on a snow day. Where I live, they are calling for a couple feet on Saturday.

Sleep in
Color with the kids
Cook with the kids
Bake together
Binge on Netflix 
Make cardboard houses
Draw pictures of dream vacations
Drink hot chocolate 
Eat chocolate 
Stare at falling snow
Tell your kids how much you love them and why
Play board games
Play card games
Play in the snow
Online shop
Cuddle
Pajama day!
Slumber party
Eat popcorn 
Dance party
Play in snow
Organize closets
Organize rooms
Rearrange furniture 
Clean your wheelchair 
Call relatives
Check on neighbors
Shovel neighbors walkway
Cook beef stew
Bake a cake
Watch HGTV
Pet your dog and cat
Clean out your pantry
Do your taxes
Change sheet day
Pilates and yoga
Play Doh!
Clay playing
Finger painting 
Make your own play doh
Teaching braiding hair
Read books
Act out books
Work on potty training
Mad libs 
Long bubble baths with toys
Make pudding


Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Day of acceptance for people with Disabilities

A story of a brave boy

This past Sunday was an odd day all around.  I didn't teach prep because we had off for Martin Luther King weekend.  I picked Laura up from her first slumber party around 9am.  Although she had fun, she was extremely tired as expected.  She didn't want to nap so I let her watch TV.  The weather forecaster's were unexpectedly calling for snow. I planned on going to Mass that night as usual but with snow wasn't so sure.

I played a lot with Jason.  He led me to his room, turned off the lights and told me, "don't be scared, mommy." As he proceeded to play with his tiny light saber.

Jeff cooked us an amazing lunch.  My favorite tomato mozzarella salad and a sandwich, corn plus fries. He also bought me an orchid. Both of the kids claimed that they were starving but wouldn't eat.  

After Jason took a nap, Laura and I finished catching up on watching Super Girl.  Afterwards, I had her shower and take a nap herself before Mass.  I sat with Jeff on the couch and watched it snow.  I kept feeling that I really shouldn't go to Mass. My ramp is very dangerous when slippery and Laura was exhausted.  But I decided to go.

My Dad came to pick us up and as expected, my wheelchair went sliding down the ramp. Thankfully, I didn't run into my father but I did hit the gate he held open.  My knee was sore and snow covered. I brushed it off and went to Mass.  Laura slept on our 10 minute drive but she stayed awake and participated during Mass. The homily was good and helped me explore some feelings I've been dealing with. So, I was feeling happy about my decision of attending Mass.

Then just as my wheelchair was secured in the van and we discussed going to dinner - Jeff called.  He usually doesn't call but we always text so I knew something was wrong. He said that he thought Jason needed to go to the ER! I didn't give him a chance to explain. I said I'm on my way!  When we arrived, I waited in the van as my dad took a shaken Laura inside. I tried my best to calm her on the way home. Laura is very kind hearted and her brother is everything to her.

As I waited for Jeff and Jason, I tried to center myself and prepare for whatever was coming.  I pictured broken bones or eating something he shouldn't. I knew I couldn't panic for Jason's sake. Jeff placed Jason in his car seat. He appeared ok but it was dark so I couldn't see a lot. I saw that he had been crying.  Jeff got in the driver’s seat and told me what had happened.

Jason is active and likes to push boundaries as every two year old boy. Well, he was standing on the arm of the couch and before Jeff could tell him to sit down, Jason dove off and smack right into the end table.  He hit his lower lip right on the edge. Jeff explained that there was lots of blood and he cleaned him up as much possible and put a big bandaid on to stop the bleeding.  He wasn't sure how bad it was due to blood but wanted it to be checked out.

As we were checking into the ER, a security guard was there. He talked to Jason and gave a high five.  Jason was very quiet but not a whimper.  Our ER checked him out and determined that he needed stitches. But the doctor was truthful in saying that he might need a plastic surgeon to do it due to it being his smile.  You want it done right. They recommended us to go to DuPont hospital for children which is a forty five minute drive. We completely agreed.  I didn't want anyone doing it unless they felt completely confident. 

As they looked and cleaned his lip, Jason didn't cry or fight.  I know Jason and knew he was holding back the tears.  That killed me to see because he had to be in a tremendous amount of pain. I bite my lip by accident often and know how painful that is so this had to hurt a lot!

DuPont was wonderful.  Our ER called ahead so it made everything go quickly.  I was also happy because they treated me like they would any mother in this situation. The wheelchair was irrelevant which it should be.  Jason needed four stitches.  They put him to sleep and we could stay with him if we choose. We did decide to stay. As they told us about all of the possible side effects, my stomach knotted and I could feel myself getting emotional. I took a deep breath and had to be strong for Jason.

At DuPont, they have someone come in and distract children as they put IVs in or other painful procedures.  She was very nice and had an iPad.  Before that, Jeff gave him his phone and he watched Netflix as I kept family and friends updated to what was going on with my phone.  The lady played iPad games with Jason, Lego games and watched Thomas. Again, no crying.  His face turned red sometimes as pain was worse and he'd look to me for reassurance but not a peep.

Quickly our little room filled with two doctors and two to three nurses. He fell asleep fast and it's so bizarre that his eyes were open. The doctor told us that would happen.  Jeff and I were silent in our thoughts and listening to any noise and comments from the staff. The TV was on with a goofy kids tv show which made us nervously chuckle. But for the most part, we were completely still, silent, and gave each other reassuring glances that Jason would be okay.

The hardest thing was as they were stitching him, he whimpered.  Whenever he did, the doctor would increase the sedative. My heart broke hearing him.  The whole thing took about 20 minutes.  They told us that Jason would sleep 20 minutes or longer afterwards but he actually woke up about two minutes after.  He was groggy and drifted in and out of sleep but he was aware. 

They gave Jason an orange popcicle to eat so they knew he could handle something in his stomach. He refused.  We tried everything but think it hurt too much.  He finally did take a few sips of apple juice and we were clear to go home! Ironically, Jeff found the movie Cars on the TV right before we were clear so Jason didn't want to leave. We told him he could watch it at home.

On the way home, we stopped at WaWa because I didn't eat since noon and it was now 1 in the morning.  Jason talked to me about trucks and wanted to hear his favorite song, Happy. Shortly after Jeff got back in the van, Jason was asleep.

Today he's doing much better and the stitches are dissolving.  I take him to his normal doctor Friday to make sure he's ok.  Laura has been an amazing big sister and kind.  I'm thrilled it wasn't more serious and will be happy if we never need the ER again (but that's wishful thinking.)


Tuesday, January 19, 2016

The LilyPad scale for people in wheelchairs

I had the wonderful opportunity to have a trial period with the LilyPad scale. As someone who uses a wheelchair, being weighed isn't easy, and in many cases, nearly impossible.  I found that not being able to be weighed especially difficult when I was pregnant. We always had to guess or just estimate.  

The LilyPad Scale is light weight and easy to set up.  It basically comes with five components - mat and four holders for the wheels. This makes storage very easy because many scales for wheelchairs are huge and heavy.  The convenience of storage is a huge plus especially if you have a busy household like I do. You can also take it with you when you travel.

To use the scale, you need a manual wheelchair and a smartphone.  I, personally, use a motorized wheelchair most of the time but do have a manual chair for times when needed.  You need to line up your chair perfectly on the four wheel holders. Then the smartphone app is neat and easy to use.  It can remember weights to keep track of your progress.

From my point of view, I found it difficult to use because I have athetoid spastic cerebral palsy. So, in other words, I move around a bit more making it hard for the wheels to stay just so in the holders. I would've liked something else in addition to the smartphone app that says how much you weigh. Someone might not always have a smartphone with them.  I also find the price to be quite high for the general population. It costs approximately $700. Perhaps a medical office could use this though and afford purchasing one.

In summary, the LilyPad scale is a terrific idea and much needed for people in wheelchairs. You must have and be able to sit still in a manual wheelchair. If you can place your chair precisely on the system and be very still, it works great.  Plus you need a smartphone or there is no other way to read the weight.  And, it costs around $700.  If interested, they offer a 30 day free trial before purchasing.  Go to their web site at 
LilyPad Scales


Friday, January 15, 2016

When your kids leave

Isn't it funny when your children are running around like crazy, yelling or arguing and all you want is quiet? Then all of the sudden they are off to grandparents or sleepovers and then there is nothing but silence. Too much silence. And then you wonder how am I going to fill the day? It's a funny rhythm as a parent. You long for bed times and then when they're gone - you want them back!

What do I do when the kids leave? I clean and organize. I know, I know that I already do that when they are here but it's a bit easier to be more thorough when they aren't.  I also don't feel guilty that I'm not ignoring anyone by going through boring paperwork or reorganizing the plastic containers cabinet.  At lunch, I kept looking at the clock so I didn't miss nap time. Yet no one here was to go for a nap.

I fast forward about 16 years in my mind and think of the silence I'll surely feel then.  No trucks whizzing by, no one asking me to play or if they can do something. I know growing children is all a part of life and involves getting my own life so to speak. But right now, I'll crack open a book as my husband naps before we do dinner and go out dancing. Unless we rather sleep!

Tomorrow the house will be full of life again until Laura has yet another sleepover. But we will at least have Jason back and let the noise begin again. 

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Laura and her art

Laura has had a love of art since she was one. Art and art projects were her absolute favorite. Some of her favorite gifts were tape, construction paper and glue sticks.  I must say that she is very creative too.

On Monday, she started her after school drawing class.  It's an hour each Monday and it's right at her school.  Well, I can't say she didn't like it. She loved it and I loved seeing her smile!  I'll have someone take a picture for me later about how nice it came out. She added very cool details.

Laura's life has been ever changing since she entered the third grade.  Other than working harder in math, her life has been coming together nicely though.  She decided to join the choir at school.  She has a remarkable singing voice so I'm happy. She's liking her dance class and doing well in karate. She will have her green belt next Friday.  Yesterday she was invited to a slumber birthday party and one of her friend's will be sleeping over next weekend. Sweetly she cried a little that she'd miss me too much but I know that she'll be just fine.

As her mom, it's been my greatest joy seeing her grow.  It's also been a huge challenge to keep up with parenting her. It's ever changing and hard sometimes. I never know what mood she will be in and how to navigate.  I'm also giving up more control and giving her more responsibility of what she needs to do. It's been hard because I try to make her life as smooth as I can, but knowing I can't live for her makes me realize I need to loosen up.  I'll never stop protecting her though or being on her side.


Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Jason is a gentleman at two

Jason has a keen understanding of my disability. He doesn't question - he just accepts and acts. I noticed his willingness to help me soon after he learned to walk. Jason would always bring me my cup and hold it for me. 

Today, after waking up, I told him that I'd be out with him as soon as I use the bathroom.  He said ok and opened the door for me and turned on the light. He left and less than 30 seconds later, he came back and did something very kind. He went in and picked up the lid to the toilet for me! I was so surprised. Then he said, " have fun going potty!"

Jason will help me play and if I can't do a certain thing, he says, "It's ok, you tried." Whenever I get ready for bed, he will put the light on in my room and say, "Are you going to put on your pajamas?" He never thinks differently or treat me different because of my disability. Jason called me a princess after placing a rainbow crown on my head.  He tells his sister that she's pretty or did a nice job on art work.

He likes to let Lady and Lucky in and out of the house. In fact, he insists on it. Jason asks me if I'm ok if I cough or sneeze. I think he's pretty intuitive young man considering he's not even 3!

Monday, January 11, 2016

Jaw spasm?

Since October pain has been a big part of my life. I don't like to talk about it because I'm just not into complaining. However, it's getting fairly ridiculous. Between my hips, teeth, medical tests, and wicked colds - I'm tired of it.  Now this morning, my jaw hurt so bad that I couldn't open and chew a muffin for breakfast. My personal care attendant suggested that I go to my doctor.

At first, they thought an ear infection. No,  Then she thought it was strep throat.  No.  The only thing that she could determine was a jaw sprain or spasm.  That's a new one to me!  She said liquid diet and soft foods plus prescribed muscle relaxers and pain killer.  Luckily, right now, my pain went from an 8 to a 3 so I'm happy.

I have a few teeth issues to take care of but looking for a better dentist.  I'm hoping that come February everything will begin to calm down and I can be myself once again.

On the bright side, Jason told me that I was a princess today. Laura had her drawing class after school. She also decided to join the school choir! Jeff is doing well and only a month left of nursing school. I'm keeping up with my resolutions. So, there are many things to be happy about but just wanting to be pain free and happy.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

7 funny things people say to those in wheelchairs

People say the most interesting things to people in wheelchairs. I know that I'm not alone on this. The sad part is that it catches me completely off guard and I don't have time to think of a witty comeback. As I walk away, I normally think of a great one but it's too late!

Here are some of my favorites:

1. At Doctor Express, after having Laura see the doctor and on our way out, the doctor taps me on the shoulder and says, "You're so brave!"  Really? For what? Laura is sick - not me.

2. When people say, "I'd like to know more about your disease." Ok, I have a disability- not a disease. And there is Google- I'm not a walking encyclopedia.  I do give disability presentations, let me give you my business card.

3. When you hear, "Let's race!" I'm not driving a car or in NASCAR.  I'm not a teenager just waiting to go fast in my car. I'm in a wheelchair- just walking around like you.

4. "How fast does that thing go?" - Really? How fast do you run? I honestly have no idea nor care.

5. "Are they really your kids??" - No, I pay them off to follow me all day asking me for stuff and saying Mom three hundred times a day.  Yes, I can get pregnant and have babies.  Just tell me you think they're cute - nothing more is needed.

6. "I can't imagine not being able to control my muscles. I think I rather die." Sorry you have so much little self worth. Life isn't horrible to need help. After all, I can't imagine going through life saying annoying statements to people but obviously it doesn't bother you.

7. When I'm dancing with my husband, someone comes up and says, "Do you like the music?" No, it's horrible. Or I'm deaf!  In all seriousness, if someone is dancing, they most likely like the music. Just saying.



Friday, January 8, 2016

My family and charter schools

Laura's school has family bingo night. This year was our third year going, and we had lots of fun. Not because we are crazy about Bingo but because we just have a good time. This year, my sister, joined us for the first time. We always have an excellent time together.  A few of us came close to winning. A few times Laura came real close but we didn't win.

I love Laura's school and am so sad that Govenor Tom Wolf is trying to kill charter schools.  I understand unions back him and he gets money from them. However, how can he just rip funding from great schools just to appease the unions? Charter schools are so good because of no unions. Teachers actually love what they do, and it shows.  Money isn't a driving force but teaching is.  When you have teachers that love what they do - you have kids who love to learn. That simple.

Well, all I can do is pray and write my Govenor.  It's getting late, and I play hockey tomorrow.  Have a great night.


Thursday, January 7, 2016

Laura, super girl, needs a sick day

When I was sick, I rarely had a chance to stay home because my parents had to work. I went to my grandparents house. It wasn't horrible by no means but it would've been nice to stay home. I remember though how warm my grandparents house was, the endless glasses of orange juice, lying on the floor with an afghan and sleeping on and off with soap operas on in the background. I had the best grandparents in the world.

Early on in my life, I decided when I was a mother, I'd try to stay at home. I wanted to give them that gift as long as possible.  Seeing your children sick is the worst feeling. You can try as much as you humanly can to make them feel better but even we have limits. I use my mother instincts and just love.

I try to raise my kids how I'd like to be treated.  We do pajamas, medicine, juice, bananas, toast, warm blankets, hugs, television time, iPad time and soup. We check temperatures and medicine chased with candy.

Today is a sick day for Laura and we have done all the above. We are now watching the series Super Girl. We are both enjoying it and nice to see her smile.  I know she's not feeling one hundred percent but she's getting there.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Surviving cold weather with a disability

In my forty years, I have learned a thing or two about cold weather and cerebral palsy.  The two don't really like each other but unless you want to stay in your house 24/7, you need to figure it out.  I go stir crazy if I'm in my house more than two consecutive days so the cold weather is something that I must deal with.

Being safe is the number one priority. If you aren't safe, it's silly to attempt anything if it'll harm you. I learned this more than once by making not so good choices. One time it was negative degrees and I took Laura to the bus wearing sweatsuit and fleece poncho. No gloves or ear muffs or heavy jacket.  By the time she got on the bus and I was at my gate, my hand was burning, stinging and going numb.  I was so terrified that I wouldn't get into my house and no attendant for thirty more minutes.  I fumbled with my gate and could open my door. But it took my hand a good 10 minute to return to normal.  So, if outside is dangerously cold, don't go unless you're prepared.

I now wear a heavy coat under my poncho.  I don't always wear gloves but I will sit on my hands or tuck them in the poncho as we wait. I have an attendant at my house earlier and if it's super cold - she will go instead of me. Plus it's good to know she is there in case I can't get back in the house. If you don't have a poncho, use a blanket on your lap and tuck it under your body. This will contain body heat.  

My poncho keeps me pretty warm and repels water. So it is great when it's raining or snowing. These hand warmers are easy to use and they are reusable! They also make toe warmers! Get a microwave heat pad and put it under your jacket.  They stay warm for about an hour.

Someone heats up the car for me before going in. Cold makes your muscles tight. I can always tell if I'm cold in a picture if my legs are straight out in front of me. Everything tightens. So being as warm as possible is good.

Wipe off any metal of your wheelchair to protect it from rust.



Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Laura, the reader of many books

Laura is such an avid reader. Her reading ability and comprehension has always made me extremely amazed.  At nine years old, she is reading the last book of The Harry Potter series..  My dad watched one of the movies with her about a week ago, and he couldn't believe that she had never saw the movie before.  He said she knew all of the parts coming up and even some of the dialogue. She understood and recalled it from reading.

For Christmas, Laura had gotten more books from the series called the Diary of a Minecraft Zombie.  I started her on the series for her birthday back in September.  She loved them and wanted to read more. So, for Christmas I knew she would love it.  I bought her three more of the series.

Last night I picked one of the books up as she was doing her homework.  To my surprise, she already read all of them.  I asked her, "What do you mean that you read all of them?" She happily replied that she, in fact, read them all. I was completely astonished because they aren't that small and she was quite busy during break.  I told her that I can't buy her another book for awhile but she could ask her librarian to order it in for her.

I'm very happy she likes to read. When I was young, I enjoyed reading but had such a difficult time holding a book.  I would end up holding it down with my knees and bending my neck to read.  Even then, I had trouble keeping the pages still. Back then, there wasn't any kindles or iPads like now.  I certainly would've loved it if they were available.

Israel, Laura's biological father, also loved to read. He read constantly and often spent all night reading.  It's absolutely amazing how many traits she has and he died when she was just 6 months.  It makes me feel sad to think what they would've been like together.  I know that he'd be crazy about her.  But they certainly share the love of reading!



Monday, January 4, 2016

Melissa and Doug Magnetic Car Loader

Jason received many neat toys for Christmas. Jason favorite toys are cars, trucks, construction trucks and anything transportation related. We have many things with wheels in this house and it captivates him for a long time.

As a last minute idea, I purchased the Melissa and Doug Magnetic Car Loader.  It's a very basic toy when you look at it.  It's a truck with a flat bed carrying for colored cars. The top of each car has a magnet and the truck has a wooden arm that moves with a magnet. It can grab each car one by one. 

Well, as soon as Jason opened this toy up on Christmas morning-I believe he fell in love.  He really didn't want to open anything else until we coaxed him. He liked his little wooden truck. 

It's amazing that usually the best toys are the most simple opening the door to the imagination.  I enjoy watching him play with each truck and hear him talk it through. To buy or look at it go to 
Melissa and Doug Magnetic Loader


Sunday, January 3, 2016

Back to my childhood church Sacred Heart

Having to use a wheelchair means you also spend time using elevators. I've had my fair share of experiences using elevators in numerous places. I'm probably certain all of the experiences could be a book one day.

I'll share my most recent adventure.  I'm a practicing Catholic, and January 1 is a Holy Day of Obligation honoring Mary. All that really boils down to is that you must attend Mass to spend time learning about Jesus's mother. Many churches that I normally attend had Mass at 7pm or on New Year's Day morning. I was looking forward to a relax day on Friday and not go anywhere.  I searched the area for an earlier Church that had an early evening Mass time, and I found it.

It was at a church that I often attended as a child- Sacred Heart in Royersford. I remembered though it wasn't accessible back then but maybe times have changed. As a child, my dad carried me up the concrete stairs and held me in his lap.  

 Jeff called for me and they said that they added an elevator. So, I talked my Dad into going to the 4pm Mass. He was reluctant but I think was ok having most of the evening free afterwards. We arrived and went in. I was excited to see the church since I haven't been there since I was probably my daughter's age or so. We found the elevator. At first, it looked like you needed a key. But you didn't- you just needed to open the door.  

My Dad opened the door and he and my nephew gasped.  The elevator was the size of a regular public bathroom stall.  Since I'm not good at hitting buttons, Laura was skinny enough to fit in with me.  My Dad closed this wooden gate that resembled a baby gate and shut the metal door.  

Laura was scared and I admit that I wasn't thrilled.  I'm claustrophobic but I couldn't show it or panic with Laura there.  She hit the button for up. Then she gave me a death grip around my neck as I said it won't be long. As you went up, you could see the walls of the church. It really reminded me of a vault that they lower a casket into. But I didn't say that either.  Sure enough, it was quickly over and we were up.

I felt greatly relieved until anticipating that in about an hour, I'd have to decend back down. Laura and Zef were quietly arguing who would go with me. I found odd considering how nervous Laura seemed. 

The church was beautiful and old.  It wasn't designed for a newer motorized wheelchair. The only place for my chair to be was up front. Not my first choice, but hey I did this to myself by picking this time. It was extremely quiet and the type of church that you knew any noise you made would echo.  Having athetoid spastic cerebral palsy, moving isn't an option - it's a constant.

So, picture me in a bigger wheelchair, up front of this quiet marbled floor church. The homily (or sermon) the priest gave was about silence. They sang Silent Night. There was no escape from silence. Then, it hit me what am I going to do when they hand out Communion? I had to go somewhere because the aisle was too narrow for people to walk around me.  I just prayed that I could go up the next aisle without getting stuck.

Luckily, Communion went without a problem.  I didn't go to my seat afterwards because Mass was almost over.  Next was the elevator ride down.  My nephew came with me and we could barely fit.  He's a bit bigger than Laura.  He was also scared but going down seemed like a few seconds - still quite creepy though. I zoomed out of there with the hope of not returning. 

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Hind sight is 20/20

Don't you hate when you make a decision and then realize small tweaks could've changed the course of the day dramatically? I hate that when it happens, and today seems to be a series of these.

Back in November, I ordered tickets on groupon for Young Innovators Fair in Oaks, Pennsylvania. It cost $36 for two of us and I jumped on it because Laura loves science. Today came and it was a series of questions- who was going to take us? When would we get back? Etc etc. Finally, after an off topic argument, it was determined that Jeff would take us and get us later.

Well, we arrived and I was full of hope plus excited to spend one on one time with Laura. It was pretty clear that within a few minutes, Laura would hate it.  There were thousands of people and we could hardly see the stands because of layers of people waiting. I don't like crowds but my daughter hates crowds with a passion.  Way too much people.

We walked and walked. We looked at what we could but pretty much she wanted to go.  I was annoyed because of spending money plus not being able to drive. I knew Jeff wouldn't be happy turning around to get us.  Ugh!  But he did and we left.

Now looking back on it, we could've been there at 9 to beat the crowd. I could've packed food to just sit at table to eat and wait for crowds to die down. The food line was beyond long. I could've gotten tickets for Sunday instead and went when less crowded. I could've forced Laura to stay and just deal with the wrath. So many options and I picked wrong I think.

So, if we go next year, I will plan more wisely.  Now we are home, I ate, Jason's napping, Jeff's working on things,Laura's playing zoo tycoon on the Xbox and I'm working.  I'm also praying the next six hours are better than the previous six hours.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Happy New Year

Happy 2016!  I hope you reach your dreams and goals.

New Year's Eve is probably my least favorite holiday. I remember being about 10 or so and breaking out in tears when the ball dropped. Why? Because I hate saying goodbye to time. I don't like seeing people I love get older, and I'm not a fan of change.  I'm also not a fan of alcohol. January is also my least favorite month because it's just cold and drab. Even though all these things I don't like, I still always wish to be invited to a party but usually am not.

I do like the idea of a new start and goals. I remember every year for Christmas I was given a daily diary. I liked cracking it open and smell the fresh paper. I enjoy keeping a log of what went on etc. Opening that journal excited me.

My resolutions for this year are:
1. Finish writing my book
2. Complete my web site
3. Build on my save money blog
4. Read ten books
5. Improve on my mothering and being a wife
6. Save money 
7. Work out more regularly 
8. Grow, learn, change, forgive 
9. Teach

This year Jeff will graduate soon as a nurse, Jason will potty train, Jason will start preschool in the fall, Laura will be a fourth grader and continue her green belt training. Who knows what else exciting changes ahead but knowing us - it should be fun!