Monday, December 29, 2008
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
I am just truly amazed at each one of my children. God planned and placed them each so perfectly and carefully in this world. Each of my children compliment and give so much to each other. I can not imagine one without the others. Sure there's a lot of bickering and a little competition amongst them. But I look at them, and I am so thankful they have each other. One day Brendan said to me, "Mom, when I get older Nolan can live with me because he has autism. And I'll live next door to you so your backyard can be my backyard." I have told him many times that friends will come and go but he will ALWAYS have his brother and sister. Just tonight Brendan was upset and in tears because he felt he had failed to help Nolan at a church function. What a lot to rest on a little 7 year old's shoulders. But I was so proud that he cares that deeply for him. I always feel sad when I see grown siblings who aren't close at all. I know it's complicated, but I am going to try my best to instill in my children the importance of having a close relationship with each other. It's my job as their mother. And I pray that they always have each other...through thick and thin.
Sunday, November 30, 2008
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
....when you have to drive a certain way home to see the car up on jacks for the umpteenth time!
....when every light in the house has to be on because this is part of his routine and how things should be in his mind.
....when you constantly hear doors opening and closing upstairs in your house, aahhhhhh!
....when your Kindergartner isn't even close to writing his own name or putting his own shoes on.
....when you avoid Home Depot because all of his favorite things are there..vacuums, ceiling fans, dryers, brooms...and he wants to tell everyone about them...and he has a really loud voice.:)....when you have to pretend to sweep him up in a dustpan just like on "Honey I Shrunk the Kids" which is currently one of the only movies he'll watch....and he's been watching it for about 3 months now.:)
....when he pushes his freckly face right up in yours to tell you something because he has little concept of personal space.:)
....when he wears the same hat 24 hours a day for 2 months straight....excluding bathtime but including bedtime. We had to "wean" him off of the hat.:)
....when he has to watch "Different Strokes" every morning because for some reason he can relate to Arnold.:)
....when you walk on eggshells around him because you never know how he's going to react to or handle certain situations and changes.
....when he says whatever is on his mind...whenever he feels like it....honestly and sincerely whether it's appropriate or not.
....when at home he CONSTANTLY needs to be by your side or know where you are in the house...which is why he is snuggling up next to me right now while I write this post.
....when something really upsets him and he has a huge meltdown....and you don't find out what upset him until a few months later because he can't communicate his feelings like a typical child can.
....when you cry over the littlest accomplishments because you know how hard he has worked to get them.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
After having two boys, it still amazes me how Alaina really enjoys dressing up. She's not quite 3 and she has really been into shoes, dresses, purses, and jewelry for a long time now. Where do they get this from? And how do I keep this from escalating into the teenage years! I have a 14 year old niece and she is already high-maintenance. I mentally tell myself, "My daughter will not be getting these things when she is this age." I was a pretty low-maintenance teenager and still consider myself pretty low-key when it comes to fashion. I just recently purchased mascara for the first time in several years after deciding to live on "The Wild Side." Just two days ago, before we left for school Alaina had changed her shoes 4 different times. Yes, she does have 4+ pairs of shoes, a couple of which were found at a garage sale. Last Sunday at church she was admiring another little girl's red fir coat. And her favorite colors happen to be pink and red! If I am wearing my red shoes and using my red purse, she has to wear her red shoes and use her red purse. It is so sweet how she already wants to be like me. However, she won't be looking to me for fashion sense! I love having a daughter and watching her grow. She's got such a personality and she's has a nice sweetness mixed with sassiness about her! I wonder what shoes she'll choose today?
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
It's hard to believe Gary and I have been back from our vacation for exactly 2 weeks. It seems like a dream. Actually it was my dream vacation, in the United States that is. Going to visit the east coast during "leaf peeping" season has always been a dream of mine. We flew in on a Saturday morning to Manchester, New Hampshire and drove up the coast of Maine from there. From the beginning we felt so adventurous. We just had two destinations for the trip and the rest was up to us. Our first stop along the road was Old Orchard Beach, Maine which was the scene of the robbery. A seagull stole my huge fresh piece of pizza right out of my hand as we were gazing at the Atlantic ocean.
After driving on up the coast of Maine through unbelievably beautiful picturesque little villages, we arrived at our first destination, The Trinity B&B on the Ocean in Owl's Head, Maine. We enjoyed our stay here including our breakfast the next morning with a New York City cab driver and his wife who were also guests at the inn. I just loved meeting and visiting with people from this area of our country. So interesting!
Right down the road from our B&B was our first lighthouse excursion. We hiked up to Owl's Head lighthouse and we were the only ones up there, and it was really secluded. If we would have known then what we know now,we would have been nervous. The other day we just saw this exact lighthouse on the travel channel for haunted lighthouses. Too bad we don't believe in that stuff!
One thing that stood out to me like a beacon in the light, was all of the New England church steeples jutting elegantly up towards the sky. They rose above everything else in the little villages we drove through. They were so symbolic and peaceful to me.
After one more night in Maine in Bar Harbor, near Acadia National Park, we headed back down the coast of Maine to explore a little bit of New Hampshire. While visiting some covered bridges there, I just kept thinking, "I miss my children, but I'm not ready to leave this beautiful place!" But, not only did I not want to leave New England, I was more sad about leaving this time alone that I had with Gary. It wasn't just the setting of our trip that was wonderful, it was also the time I had with him. We had so much fun, and pretty much joked and laughed the whole trip. I told him just today, that one of my favorite memories of our vacation was when we were driving up the coast and out of the blue he just looked over at me and said, "You're so beautiful." He still finds me beautiful after 13 years of marriage! Or maybe the glaring sun blurred his vision.:) I just have to say this vacation was worth every penny, because an investment in our marriage is priceless.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
It's been awhile since I posted. Things have calmed down with Nolan. I am now refreshed from a wonderful vacation with my husband to New England. Stay tuned for vacation highlights....
I have been wanting to share another poem of mine that accompanies a piece of artwork I did for an assignment. Yes, I did say an assignment. I co-founded an art club 9 years ago where we get together and present our art. Usually we have an "assignment" or inspiration. The inspiration for this work was creating a piece having to do with our favorite scent. One of my favorite scents is the smell of coffee. Ooh, how comforting. I also wrote a poem on the power of scent.
You're all wrapped up
In a bowl of something
From your past,
Where a cup overflowing
With the scent
Of a better tomorrow,
Envelops your inner-being with promises.
An open window beckons
Your soul for a piece
And your mind and body
Are overcome with the
Feeling of calmness and joy:
You are surrounded by love.
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Ugh, this week has been especially difficult with Nolan. After a couple of days of repeated meltdowns, I found myself starting to have a meltdown. With my hubby working nights, I was dealing with this solo. At one point I started crying and silently muttered to myself, "I can't take this anymore." I found myself even wondering, "Why can't he be a typical child? Why does he have to have autism?" I just don't usually go there and ask those questions very often. I love, adore, and appreciate Nolan for who he is, just as he is. God made him this way for a reason. And I am so proud of him, so proud of his uniqueness. But there are those dark times when I question the difficulties. On Friday at the end of this LONG week, Nolan had his first art therapy class with a small group of children who all have autism. Seeing these beautiful children was just what I needed! Being around other special children like Nolan and their mothers felt so comforting. Nolan even made a strong connection with another child! As I go into this next week with a little uncertainty of how it's going to go, I am trying to remain strong and positive. I am hopeful he will snap out of it. If he doesn't.....well I might need another girl's night out this weekend!:)
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
I am trying to let go of some things as a mother. Like choosing all three of my kids' outfits. I've been blessed with unpicky kids, when it comes to appearance. I've always matched their outfits, chosen their shoes, or atleast gently suggested choosing certain pairs of shoes that satisfied my taste. I might say, "How about these, these are cool." Somehow I turned into a clothes and shoes salesman with my children. And it's like they're little dolls for me to dress up. So it was really hard for me to let go recently, when my older son Brendan wanted to get his hair cut really short. At first he mentioned it occasionally and I would just brush it off. Then he became more persistent. My husband and I joked, "Isn't this scenario usually the other way around with the kid wanting to grow his hair long?" We loved his long hair, his beautiful auburn locks. But it was making him hot, getting in his eyes, and becoming a pain to style everyday. So we gave in and I had to come to the realization that this is a good thing, him having his own preference on his appearance. Him having an opinion and wanting to be seen and heard. It's not like he wanted a tattoo or piercing. But oh, how it's hard to let go!
Monday, September 1, 2008
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Thoughts and feelings exposing me for all to see.
I am free to have true opinions and thoughts without apologies, this is me;
Knowing what is absolutely true in the face of adversity.
I am free to have imperfect children, to be an imperfect wife and mother;
Attitudes and appearances coming forth, real and authentic like no others.
I am free to let go of insignificant details clouding my mind;
Fretting and worrying, taking up precious time.
I am free to disregard what other people think, to eliminate comparisons;
Thinking for myself, living up to my own standards.
I am free to be in my own body, dents, ripples, valleys, and mountains all in their perfect place;
Unkept hair and an unmake-uped face.
I am free to dance without inhibitions and regrets;
Insecurities vanish as I twirl around fancy free, performing perfect pirouettes.
I am free to just BE, to breath and to live;
Content with how He made me, what He gave me is all I need to give.
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Around here we hear a lot about broken things. We hear about broken buildings, broken cars, and broken ceilings on a daily, often hourly basis. You may be asking yourself, "Huh?" Well this is because our 5 year old son Nolan has autism. So along with this disorder comes obsessions and fixations. He has many of them, right now it's broken things. We often have to drive certain routes to see broken cars. Yes folks, there happens to be a car up on jacks down the road that has been that way for a month. I live in rural Kansas, what do you expect!? So sometimes it's just worth it to go that extra mile, literally, to please him. He often asks for so little, and he takes joy in such simple things. When we heard the word Autism, our hearts and dreams for him were broken. Now, we are building new dreams for him. He is such a jolly freckly faced fellow, and we couldn't imagine him any other way. I personally am trying to choose the path of hope and optimism, instead of the path of bitterness and what could have beens. So let me introduce you to one of the joys of my life, Nolan.