Thursday, July 5, 2018

Fourth and New Friends

This year for the Fourth some new friends that just moved to town invited us for hot dogs, fireworks and board games. 

They live on a cul-de-sac, perfect for roller skates, sidewalk chalk and lots of fun and noise. 

Much fun was definitely had by all!

Poseidon, With Sand In His Socks

Abi got to sing a song in her school play and she did a great job!


Where has the time gone? I haven’t blogged since February and it’s now July? Yikes!

It’s getting harder to blog as the kids get older. I’m more aware of their need for privacy and how telling my story overlaps with telling their stories. 

This spring, finishing school and leaving fourth grade, Abi’s story became a lot harder as some pretty severe trauma behaviors surfaced. I’ll stick to my story (rather than sharing too much of hers) and say that coping has been pretty tough. 

Hubby gave me a few much-needed respite days at the cabin to process all the emotions the situations had brought up. 

I spent a lot of time on the hammock praying, crying, just breathing in the scent of the woods. 

I also used the time to read two wonderful books. “Beyond Consequences” is one that has been on my list for a long time and I was amazed at how accurately it described Abi’s trauma behaviors and suggested the motivations behind them that are based in fear and how easy it is for me to love her and help her ease those fears once I have faced my own issues and triggers. (As if that is ever easy! But oh so worth it!)

Then, I read my friend Niki’s latest book that details her adoption story, a tale that I watched unfold first-person. Still, it was fun to read her book and reminded me that we always make it through the times when it feels like we are swimming through the deep ocean with no land in sight. 

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Graphic Design

For her birthday/Christmas, Curly got an iPad Pro and has been using it to create amazing pieces of digital art. 

Tuesday, February 20, 2018


For Presidents’ Day, we headed to the cabin, but a cold snap came through and we couldn’t get the uninsulated shack warm enough to be comfortable. So we went home again. The kids did have fun sledding for a while. 

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Glamor Hair

I unbraided Abi’s hair so for a couple of minutes she has the 80’s glamor look. LOL 

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Lego Robots

I forgot to post last December about Curly’s Lego Robotics team. They came in third and had a fun time. Best of all, they had fantastic teamwork. 

How to Learn Speed Reading

When your library book is due today (used up renewal over break) and you really want to finish it before you take it back in, you learn to read a little faster!

I remember doing the same thing, and the skill served me well later in school. 

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Snapshot: ShirtScape

Seth: “Mommy, I’d like a t-shirt with a landscape on it.”

Me: “Like Bob Ross paints?”

Seth: “Yeah.”

Me: “Sounds fun.”

Monday, January 15, 2018

Little Cabin in the Big Woods

We got school and work off today to celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Our family decided to spend the day at the cabin. 

The kids discovered that the icy snow was just right for making snow sculptures. Having recently watched a documentary on the Ice Hotel, they were keen to try their own artistic endeavors. 

Bean made a snow castle. 

We took the dogs, of course. Coco loved the cabin, as I expected. What’s not to like about woods and treats and walks and a ride in the car?

It takes a true Pyro to start a fire in the snow. I’d like to note that yours truly made this little beauty for the kids to “roast stuff on.”

Apparently roasting stuff mostly meant eating mini marshmallows out of the bag. 

During lunch, Hubby read to the kids. We are finishing Treasures of the Snow, set in the Swiss Alps, which seemed particularly appropriate for a winter cabin visit. 

Darkness comes early in the winter, so we lit candles and played games and fixed one-pot chicken and rice for dinner. 

I let the Littles eat up in the loft, which they thought was a fun treat. 

Munching Seth’s brownies, singing hymns together on the drive home... it was one of those rare days when the kids had sweet attitudes, the weather was perfect, the cabin cozy and warm. Life really doesn’t get much better. 

Sunday, January 14, 2018

The Adventures of Coco

Follow the puppy raising and training of Coco, my guide dog candidate over at 

Monday, December 25, 2017

Natalie Jumps Into 13

For her “big friend birthday party,” Natalie wanted to go to the new trampoline park, called Planet 3. She invited some friends from school and church, and they had a wonderful time. 

A Just Us Christmas

As much as I love our extended families on both sides, my favorite way to celebrate Christmas is home with our little family. We do the candlelight Christmas Eve service at church, and open one present on Christmas Eve. Then presents and a somewhat special meal on Christmas Day. 

As much as I enjoy traveling, it’s exhausting and stressful with four kids and chronic health issues. Staying home is just so relaxing in comparison. Still, we love our families and hope we’ll see them soon. 

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Coco Dog

Look who I have! This is Coco, a 5-month old German Shepherd pup that I’m going to puppy raise with a potential to train him as a guide dog for myself. 

I decided to go with owner training for a whole bunch of reasons, one of which I get to puppy raise and bond sooner. 

Also, the red tape with having a vision impairment that doesn’t fit the usual legal criteria is really difficult to navigate, and this solves some of that too. 

I’ve researched owner training and it looks completely do-able. Also, owner trained guide dogs are covered by the same access laws. 

So this guy gets to be my shadow for a while and see if he has what it takes to train when he is old enough. If not, we’ll find a new home for him and try again.

And Coco, in his first few days home had these items to share with our readers. 

I am currently planning to play it safe and NEVER step off the rug. Not even for that piece of kibble that I really really want. #CocoDog

How to play with a squeaky toy:

1. Stick it to the Velcro on your Cone of Shame. 

2. Pause to contemplate the Universe. 

3. Flip it so the end is in your mouth. 

4. Squeak and enjoy. 


Saturday, October 28, 2017

The Makings of a Hufflepuff

Abi wants to be a Hufflepuff this year.

I couldn’t find a tie or little preppy skirt, so I got to improvise, which is, of course, my favorite thing. 

Yellow fabric and black paint made the stripes for the tie. 

A plaid shirt from the thrift store was easily dismantled and sewn into a cute pleated skirt. 

Walmart had a lovely witchy hat...

And the ensemble is coming together! Stay tuned for finished pictures in a few days.